DILEMN - TALK ABOUT US EP [APORN023]
For many, electronic dance music in France will always be synonymous with the big names such as Cassius and Daft Punk. Their musical innovation and style almost single handedly created what is still thought of today as the French House sound, a style that has continued to influence producers around the world from the late 90’s until today. While these giants of the club scene still resonate today, there is a whole new breed of French producer who are taking the lineage of French House and twisting it together with the sounds of dubstep and multi genre bass culture and once again producing something fresh, boundary pushing and exciting to continue to establish French club culture’s standing as a scene of imperious innovation. Having already developed Parisian superstars Dirtyphonics within the AudioPorn family, Shimon’s A&R skills and knowledge of the French scene have been proven once again with the exclusive signing of Dilemn whose debut Talk About Us EP for the label selectively draws from the palette of influences that Cassius and Daft Punk used in their referencing of Parliament and Funkadelic, but twists it with heavy bass and intricate production from the more cerebral end of dubstep and breaks to produce an EP which is the perfect marriage between bass, soul and groove. A marriage of which both Daft Punk and George Clinton would surely approve.
The Talk About Us EP features current darling of the UK Bass scene Ayah Marar whose featuring on tracks with Calvin Harris, Yogi and Camo & Krooked as well as her own singles such as ‘Mind Controller’ have made her one of the most talked about names in bass culture in 2012.
'Talk About Us Ft. Ayah Marar’
Snapped up by Mistajam’s show on 1Xtra for a world exclusive first play, the title track opens with Ayah Marar’s instantly recognisable vocal layered over a half step heavily reverbed drum pattern and layers of P funk synths, until a triplet bass drum rolls into a mighty wall of drum step and bass. Interspersed with slamming heavy chord progressions, the track skips along in half time DnB, the beats and interlaced bass buzzes, screeching robo bird calls and oscillating grime wobbles interjected with occasional Egyptian sounding acidic riffs. This is sing along, feet stomping, drum-step masterclass mayhem. A guaranteed killer for dubstep, DnB and mixed genre dancefloors alike, a pop diamond wrapped up in a layer of bass grime. Proper.
'Watts Of Funkin’
Opening with answer and call Harpsichord and heavily processed keys, the track adds flashes of RZA style speeded and clipped vocals and heavily evocative sounds in the vocodered melody which (with a nod and a wink back to France and Daft Punk) brings the key styles and influences of French House slamming up to date with a heavy drenching of gutteral bass. At the drop, the track can be taken one of two ways – for those listening on headphones the track is a slick funky house dubstep neck snapper which introduces a slightly sinister off beat ska harpsichord stab alongside the disco and vocal clips. For those listening in a club (and for this only really something as mighty as the Valve Sound System could do it justice) you get all above with the addition of a ghostly layer of humming stomach churning sub that only comes to light when the system can deliver it. This is without doubt one of the most surreal combinations of styles to ever work its way into a dubstep track, it is thrillingly original and an awesome representation of French dance and bass culture past and present.
Kicking off like a long lost Quincy Jones instrumental the pounding hip hop style beat is undercut with a sleazy night time staccato rock guitar alongside Dilemn’s trademark P funk influenced synth lines lending lashes of melody to the intro. The beat then doubles up into four to floor (dancefloor flip out guaranteed) until the dubstep hyper drop where warping bass belches are crisscrossed with jarring savage off key synth riffs, ripping and tearing through the track. After a video game rave breakdown, the drop flips the track straight into four to floor with the same spirit crushing bass but with added bubbling pops and 8 bit melodies until the beat gives way to dubstep once more. People talk of DJ battle weapons; this is a true weapon of mass dancefloor destruction. A club bouncing dubstep and four to floor bomb to send any crowd into total meltdown. Nasty.
'Kill The Nation’
Having already taken in dubstep, DnB, drumstep and everything in between, Dilemn takes ‘Kill The Nation’ into four to the floor electro territory with a suspense filled intro, guitars and electro sparks ghosting in and out of the mix, until the opening breakdown where a deadpan female voice repeats a dead eyed hypnotic mantra up to the drop where a pure acidic bounce bubbles alongside the repeated vocal line and speeded vocal clips and bollywood strings. A second male vocal then switches into the track alongside the paranoia giving the track a feeling of industrial warehouse late night psychosis. For when the fair weather ravers have long since left, this track soundtracks when the real party starts and the hardcore are just getting started. Slightly intimidating, slightly warped and totally incredible, this is as evocative of smoke filled wide eyed early morning as you are likely to get. Casual euphoria crew need not apply.
'Afraid Of Change’
Closing the EP is Dilemn in sci fi space exploration mode. Reaching for the stars in ethereal wonder, the intro is the sound of excitement at potential new discoveries counterbalanced by the drop where the discovery turns out to be wave after wave of zombiefied lurching automaton bass shuffling forward with deadly inevitability. Again the second drop switches into double time with rattling rapid-fire bass streaming and surging out of the speakers. A reinterpretation of a 50’s sci fi future, this is the sound of new weird worlds made real. Somewhere between sinister and awe inspiring this is mood dubstep to switch people out of euphoria or screwface and into somewhere altogether different. As with every Dilemn track, the emotions (alongside the production) is complex, something altogether rare in today’s one note dubstep and beats world.
Beatport Exclusive: 9th July
General Release: 23rd July
Label: Audioporn Records
Cat # APORN023
Dilemn - Talk About Us EP
1. ‘Talk About Us Ft. Ayah Marar’
2. ‘Watts Of Funkin'’
3. ‘Two Points’
4. ‘Kill The Nation’
5. ‘Afraid Of Change’