Asusu "Velez" b/w "Rendering"
Of the trio of Bristol-based producers behind vinyl label-cum-live act Livity Sound, Asusu has been the least active individually over the past couple of years. His partners, Kowton and Peverelist, have each been releasing a steady stream of well-received club tunes in recent months—including their stunning joint effort for Hessle Audio, "Raw Code" b/w "Junked"—but we've not heard from Asusu since his last Livity Sound outing, the massively underrated house jam "Sister," back in 2011. Yet while he may be the least prolific of the three, Asusu's productions are no less impressive than those of his more visible Livity Sound brethren.
As has been the case with both Kowton's and Pev's recent releases, these new tracks clearly show the positive influence that developing the hardware-driven Livity Sound live show has had on the three producers' studio work. "Velez" in particular is a tight, spartan production that does away with many of the bells and whistles of modern club music in favor of the less-is-more approach that was a necessity of early house and techno. The track uses a deceptively funky patchwork of metallic drum hits and percussive loops as its core, which Asusu loops and builds upon with evolving layers of distorted hats and booming, sub-heavy kicks. It's pretty classic stuff, but it's delivered with a brilliantly raw, no-nonsense energy that turns "Velez" into an excellent club track.
B-side "Rendering," meanwhile, is a little more melodic. Again, the track is based around a similarly rhythmic—albeit slightly more spacious—core loop, but here Asusu strips back the drum-machine patterns in favor of distant, muddied melodies and thin, fizzing synth stabs. The result is a hypnotic piece of club music which unfolds slowly, drawing the listener in with its mesmerically simple groove before gradually morphing into something altogether warmer and nostalgic. As with the a-side, it's not exactly revolutionary, but both tracks here are prime examples of raw, stripped-down dance music that's been executed perfectly—which is precisely what we're coming to expect from the Livity Sound stable.
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