- ‘What is techno’ is not a matter of opinion, it's a matter of difference - and repetition. From the foundations of the music to where it finds its most sublime expression, that’s the principal at work, and people who say it all sounds the same – well, it’s just because they can’t hear the difference.
Alex Under is someone who can. His music takes the stale formulas of the old beast and makes them playful and young again. If it’s techno by numbers, then they’re magic numbers, mostly. His tracks often play with the phasing of the loops, to the point where the elements of the music are socialising with each other: breaking up, then re-coupling in new combinations. It’s minimal too, but in the proper sense of the word – working with as little as possible to make something work as well as it can. And work it does: on 'Collage' Under pushes his style further on three tasty techno workouts that bristle with strumming rhythms phasing through each other in party mode.
'Distantes' is the big-room business, utilising long build-ups, tear outs and breakdowns to drive the groove through the loop and right into the floor. It’s a nice piece of classic techno with a touch of the Reinhart Voigt of old - guaranteed to frighten pets and the elderly.
'El Encuentro' follows suit, bringing the noise through a spooky loop haunting its way towards a sombre padfest where it reflects for a moment how far past its bedtime it is before returning to the business of burning the floor.
'Fortuito' is the quirkiest of the numbers here, playing with out of phase rhythms, an almost Studio Eins-ish bassfloor, and a melody that sounds for all the world like what skeletons dance to, if and when they do... It’s the most playful and interesting of the three, and is the closest Under comes to finding his own difference among the repetitions.
All in all, a decent EP full of floor-filling, functional techno with that little something extra – and that’s more than enough.
A El Encuentro