One of the most alluring aspects of the anonymous UK production outfit Gescom is the stylistic freedom the group exhibits from one release to the next. This is likely due to the constantly shifting personnel responsible for the project's 16-plus-year-spanning discography, a roster that has been known to include Sean Booth and Rob Brown of Autechre. Nevertheless, despite the fluidity of Gescom's sound and cast of producers, there's always been a disjointed, hip-hop-indebted framework tying it all together. Four years after the release of its last record, the acid-tinged A1 - D1 EP, that inherent style is apparent as ever on the new, five-track Skull Snap EP, although it's been skewed this time with samples of horns, strings, and other live instrumentation.
Bombastic opener "Seventh Stone Triangle" sounds like a warped Kanye West b-side, boasting anthemic string arrangements, operatic bursts, warbling organ chords, and heavily treated guitar crunch over the top of a head-knocking beat. "Seventh Ace Deuce" could be described in much the same way, but the remaining three cuts on Gescom's EP find the nameless artists working in more esoteric realms—with better results. Standout tunes "R Zee Oner Panix" and "Cake Mic" utilize diced-up drum recordings and a bit of indiscernible noise for a handful of pared-down grooves, which, no matter who is doing the knob twiddling, have long been Gescom's strong point. Though nothing on the Skull Snap EP is all too surprising or even that exciting when it comes down to it, it is nonetheless a welcome update from the elusive IDM veterans.