- Ricardo Villalobos, as famed for his cosy alliance with Richie Hawtin as he is for his music, has won as many critics as fans with his recent sprawling productions. The introspective double-pack 'Ascho', released on Luciano's Cadenza label at the beginning of the year, was praised by some as a work of genius, and reviled by others as an impenetrable, self-indulgent work with, ahem, minimal dancefloor appeal.
'Fizheuer Zieheuer', Villalobos's first proper offering on Playhouse since 2003's seminal 'Alcachofa' LP, is sure to bring about similarly mixed reactions. Clocking in at a whopping thirty-seven minutes, spread over two sides of vinyl, it's the first side where the action is. The unwavering 4/4 kick makes the track surprisingly club-friendly, but really just serves to provide a framework within which Villalobos can test out and play with more curious, disorienting microrhythms.
Depending on your taste and your dancefloor, you'll love or loathe this unashamed experimentalism, but be sure to listen out for the brass stabs buried deep in the mix and wait for the pay-off: a rousing horn fanfare, apparently sliced from the Chilean national anthem, which bursts triumphantly from the speakers before being swallowed back into that relentless percussive chug - a percussive chug which then drones onto Side B for a further (dull) 20 minutes.
This epic 12" will give the haters plenty to hate on, but those who take an interest in Ricardo's excursions to techno's outer limits will find themselves handsomely rewarded.