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  • Filed under: Review
  • 07/17/2013

Interplanetary Prophets Zero Hour EP

A collaboration between Hieroglyphic Being (a.k.a. Jamal Moss) and Ital (a.k.a. Daniel Martin-McCormick) feels fitting; the former is a pioneer of leftfield electronics, while the latter is a rising star amongst today's hardware-obsessed avant garde. After colluding in extended studio sessions, the producers have taken on the name Interplanetary Prophets and condensed their collective output into three hefty tracks for Planet Mu. The Zero Hour EP unites Moss' years of experience as an analog technician with Ital's shinier proclivities, and the combination proves to be potent.

The entire a-side is devoted to "Burning Chrome," a 14-minute cut of itchy minimal techno. The compact, muffled beat exudes a tightly controlled energy, and the sprinkles of glimmering instrumentation feel smooth and precise. But the Interplanetary Prophets add a rough edge to these pristine elements by bringing in crackling waves of static and an irregular kick drum, which results in a lurching, unconventional momentum.

On the b-side, the duo reaches beyond the dancefloor for inspiration. "Zero Hour" channels post-punk electronic bands like Ike Yard; the song's bubbling, glitchy beat and reverberating spoken vocals are reminiscent of the band's "Loss." Still, Moss' and Martin-McCormick's track feels cleaner and clearer, as if they produced it in high definition. Furthermore, the offerings on Zero Hour never feel cluttered—the Interplanetary Prophets manage to stir up hypnotic mysticism with spacious instrumentation and patient structures. The shortest track on the record, "Running out of Time," unfolds over the course of six minutes but never actually develops a beat. Its sonic elements—twinkling melodies, extended high-pitched notes, and low, foreboding bass tones—appear and disappear from the mix, transforming the track in tiny increments.

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