- Ethereal Sound's apparent mission to keep things as gossamer as possible continues apace with this, the imprint's first EP from someone not named AntonZap. Area is the nom de recording moniker of Chicago radio station WNUR's finest, M50. Innate Obscurity falls directly in line with his label associations—Echospace, Wave Music, etc.—mixing dub techno fundamentals with deep house techniques across its three cuts. The most obvious referent, though, might just be Autechre circa Amber, when the IDM duo was elegantly fusing solemn melodies with intricate rhythms.
To be sure, Area doesn't confuse with his beat structures. Each track here can easily be mixed into just about anything in the house range. There are little touches, however, that reflect an attention to detail that goes beyond mere loop construction. "Tiny Moments," in particular, clicks and pops like it was built with headphones in mind. That said, "Innate Obscurity" has just as stunning of a descending synth line, one that sounds as though its climbing down an infinitely long flight of stairs, but a heavy enough bassline to balance its featherweight tendencies. Area, like Zap, has found a balance between emotion and function that should delight home listeners and club dancers alike.
A1 Tiny Moments
B1 Broken Glass Everywhere
B2 Innate Obscurity