Originality and innovation is something held in high regard at Broken Culture. Sure, sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t, and those that know the rules tend to break them much better, but where would this music scene be if no one tried? One producer that’s definitely trying his utmost to mess with the d&b tempo is London based beatsmith Gaunt, who’s recent teaming up with Silent Dust’s genre hopping, boundary pushing label none60 just recently made it’s way through our ear canals, dusting away the cobwebs of a host of mediocre, safety rope clutching digital releases. With one foot firmly in the techno scene, his tense, paranoia infused production jitters through d&b as skippy hats journey along surprise filled paths of thumping kicks and taut bass lines.
Although nothing entirely new, the name of the A Side undoubtedly a reference to Jonny L’s Piranha imprint that could be said to have pioneered this d&b/techno crossover (couldn’t resist a throwback at the end of this post), Guant provides a modern update on a sound you don’t hear much of lately as clapping snares and loose hats build hectically through rolling kicks into the repeating vocal sample and camptivating synth of Pirahna. Full of suspense, the overpowering, almost muddy sound claws it’s way under your skin as drum edits and rolls, daringly carrying on until you’re just about to check if it’s skipping, build and build to the tracks crowning moment. Coming into it’s own after the breakdown, a new vocal samples introduces a cheeky, funk filled bass line that polishes off the track, a reward for the consistent teasing of it’s earlier stages.
On the flip, Percolation is slightly more spaced out in it’s intro but no less jittering, tight kicks soon building through dizzying atmospherics as the track steadily opens out, cymbals catching you off guard before a rising bassline that it’s simply impossible not to move to brings the track in organically. Cutting in and out and introducing new elements, hums and swirls, as it pleases, it’s sound is slightly trappy in nature, although pleasingly less synthetic. Although this track frustratingly never quite seems to release it’s tension, it’s definitely a dancefloor teaser that the likes of Doc Scott have already learnt can have the crowd hanging on the mix. Although a sound that I’d find it hard to come back to often, it’s constant thud a slightly uncomfortable annoyance for home listening, it’s one that without a doubt has a time and a place within sets and is pleasingly against the grain. Grab it direct from None60 here.