- 2562's Fever is the sound of a sampler. It would have been easy to get hung up on this idea once David Huismans had announced that his fourth full-length would be composed solely from late '70s and early '80s disco records. But in practice it's almost inescapable. Nowhere is this more overt than in the album's drums. In the case of third track, "Juxtaposed," each hit is purely ephemeral, lifted with scalpel-precision from its source without so much as a suggestion of decay. It initially feels a touch hackneyed, but then a producer's true worth can often be measured by what they do around the beats—this frame becomes swarmed by chubby white noise and unstable synth lines, whipping up an average set of samples into something dangerous.
This main compositional tool remains apparent throughout Fever, to the point at which it becomes a primary trait. The other is the continuation of the Huismans' exploits in non-4/4 house and techno. It's at the point where the two meet—Huismans' innovative streak slamming into the limitations of his self-imposed restrictions—that Fever grips. Opener "Winamp Melodrama" is Huismans doing triumphant rave but requiring Porky Pig-like sample stuttering to execute the idea. In "Aquatic Family Affair"'s overly clipped beats a sort of awkward sense of singularity emerges in its groove, backed by a trademark 2562 chord-progression. The harcore-esque lead line from "Brasil Deadwalker" seems to have been snatched on a more wholesale basis (rather than conjuring up a riff from single notes) but still requires legwork to wed it to a dark, 135 BPM techno throb.
In essence, working with snippets of audio harks back to the limitations faced by producers at the dawn of dance music when their Emus, Rolands and Akais could handle only a couple of seconds of data, so it's perhaps no coincidence that Fever has an air of the era about it. "This is Hardcore" captures a certain early '90s poignancy, compounded by the way in which its lead line is rough cut in order to make musical sense. Penultimate track "Wasteland" feels stretched and primal but totally compelling because of this. And in closing the album, "Fever" sums up the LP at large: an innovative trek through retrospection, and a concept pulled off with dexterity.
01. Winamp Melodrama
04. Aquatic Family Affair
06. Flavour Park Jam
07. This Is Hardcore
08. Brasil Deadwalker
09. Final Frenzy