Stingray313 Electronic Countermeasures EP
When it comes to legit Detroit techno credibility, it's hard to top Stingray313 (a.k.a. DJ Stingray a.k.a. Sherard Ingram). The man is affiliated with Urban Tribe and Underground Resistance, pals around with Moodymann and used to serve as Drexciya's tour DJ. He also heads up his own imprint, Micron Audio Detroit, on which he's releasing this new EP, Electronic Countermeasures.
As one might expect, the EP is stacked with the sort of raw, machinelike sounds that the Motor City is known for. More than anything, Electronic Countermeasures is an exercise in hard, menacing electro. Its four tracks all clock in above 140 bpm and ride fiercely on the back of stripped-down breakbeats and a harsh, almost industrial sound palette. Stingray's economical approach to production is especially impressive, as the songs on Electronic Countermeasures have plenty of space, at times seeming to be built around only a handful of sounds. Yet throughout the EP, the music remains dark, ominous, and, most importantly, effective. Granted, these tunes are most likely only suited for a very particular sort of dancefloor, as songs like "Signal Analysis" and "VLF Device" could be described as downright scary, particularly when the former's nightmarish voiceover begins or when the latter brings in some klaxon-like bursts and a pinpoint synth "melody" that truthfully feels like its drilling through your skull. "2.4 GHz ISM" and "Spread Spectrum" could be described as marginally lighter, but only in comparison to the EP's other offerings.
Electronic Countermeasures is not a feel-good release. Here in the XLR8R office, it's been described—only half-jokingly—as the perfect soundtrack for murdering someone. In all seriousness though, the EP may not be tailored for the average dancefloor, but it's undeniably excellent and Stingray's uncompromising approach is a big part of that. Even if it's only suitable for bad dreams and the sketchiest of late-night warehouse raves, we imagine that Stingray wouldn't have it any other way.
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