H-SIK "Sonic Rage" b/w "No Promises"
Based in Amsterdam and born in the Ivory Coast, Herve Sika (a.k.a. H-SIK) is the latest addition to the increasingly adventurous roster of Bristol-based label Black Acre. True to the imprint's recent form, his first single—which follows a debut mini-album on Error Broadcast last year—is an eccentric mix of juke-indebted drum-machine workouts, jungle breaks, and epic film-score synths. It's a combination that feels like shouldn't work, yet it all comes together to form an enjoyable, if somewhat chaotic, two-track release.
At first, with its emphasis on huge, blown-out kick drums and chopped rap vocals, "Sonic Rage" isn't a million miles away from the simplistic bombast of trap. However, the sheer weirdness of Sika's arrangement, along with the jungle and juke-like drum breaks that pepper the track, elevate it well beyond the realm of big-room beatmaking. The early emphasis on bass is something of a red herring anyhow; as the track progresses, it evolves into dense patchwork of rapid-fire drum hits and tense synth lines, ultimately morphing into something much more akin to old-school rave music.
The slightly more spacious "No Promises" is the pick of the two though. Here, Sika builds on a slightly less erratic jungle rhythm, moving the emphasis away from the low end and toward an atmospheric backdrop of drawn-out synth pads and slow-motion vocals. A slightly dissonant wandering synth lead gives the track a cinematic quality, as the cheap, horn-like sounds emulate the pseudo grandeur of some low-budget sci-fi TV show theme tune. The effect provides a nice juxtaposition to the inherent energy of Sika's fast-paced beats, resulting in a production with a pleasantly deceptive amount of depth to it.
- NewsAphex Twin Talks 'Syro,' Gear, '90s Rave Culture, and More in Extensive New Interview
- GearDntel Shares Five Essential Pieces from His Home Studio
- FeatureReal Talk: DVS1 on Respect, Photography on the Dancefloor, and the Battle Between Art and Entertainment
- FeatureHi-Five: Tin Man Selects His Top Acid Tracks
- MP3kidkanevil "Thousand Year Forest (One for Yosi)"
- September 18: New Forms Festival 2014 with Oneohtrix Point Never, Hieroglyphic Being, Helena Hauff, Madlib, and More
- September 24: Decibel Festival with Marcel Dettmann, KiNK, FaltyDL, John Roberts, Steffi, Simian Mobile Disco, and More
- October 15: Amsterdam Dance Event with Four Tet, DJ Koze, Jon Hopkins, Karenn, Ben UFO, Floating Points, MCDE, Talaboman, and More
XLR8R Downloads Player