- Slikback goes hard while Soda Plains taps into rave on this club EP.
- Touring Asia last year had a big impact on Slikback. Since he hooked up with Hyph11e and Shanghai's SVBKVLT last year, his style has turned from sleek to snarling. It was a sound he showed off again for his show-stopping set at last weekend's Club Quarantäne stream, where gqom rubbed elbows with screamed vocals and serrated leads. This new split for PAN, with underrated producer Soda Plains, continues Slikback's transformation and outlines the ongoing transcontinental club music exchange, as the two artist's toughened styles feed off each other.
The first thing that comes to mind when hearing Slikback's slamming productions—"AKI" and "UZAA"—is the gnarliest techstep drum & bass imaginable. The Kenyan producer is not making noise for noise's sake, but there's an unrelenting soundsystem pressure here. Listen to how bits of "AKI" sound like a stuck gear trying to get going again, or how the drums on "UZAA" disintegrate on impact like falling meteors.
That's not to overshadow Soda Plains' contributions, which represent his first new material since 2018. These tracks speak the language of UK hardcore—screeching synths and bouncy drum breaks—with unusual configurations. "Glacier" moves like a marching band, while "No Fear" has a trap flavour. PAN's ongoing Split series, so far featuring Toxe, Crystallmess, M.E.S.H. and Tzusing, has refigured the Berlin label as once again scaling the heights of global club music innovation. With Slikback on board, PAN has outdone itself, boasting four of the most exciting, unreal club tracks we've heard all year.
A1 Slikback - AKI
A2 Slikback - UZAA
B1 Soda Plains - Glacier
B2 Soda Plains - No Fear