Reviews: Carl Craig DJs


CiM: Series Two



"Soft Rain" [150k RealAudio]

"Factory Preset One"

[147k RealAudio]

Series Two isn't quite the latest release from Simon Walley, but it definitely deserves another mention while his material on Delsin circulates. Walley is one of the many unassuming and hugely talented artists out there that we're hoping to see a lot more of (erm, now that we're keeping track in print once again ...).

The evidence is right here--etched in five cuts: "Bias" opens the EP, a late-century house construction. This isn't your typical homage to Basic Channel or other reductionist turn, however. Walley instead manages to transform a collage of chimes, stretched notes and fade-away melodies into a deceptively simple dance track.

More complex is "Soft Rain," an absolutely gorgeous song with the perfect balance of metronomic precision and emotional outpourings. Again, one of CiM's strengths seems to be in building fuller songs out of what would normally be great DJ tracks. The kick, white-noise hi-hat and melody would normally suffice, but the strings and bassline pull you in unexpected directions. Not unlike some of the music Jason Williams and Kit Clayton construct for the Parallel label, this is the kind of track I play to newcomers when I want to get them to understand techno in all its wonderful complexity.

The tracklist for the B-Side reads like Sharpie-scrawled place-holders: "Factory Preset One, "View 91 Fill" and "Edit Micro Tune." You can be sure that the music behind the titles is anything but haphazard.

The first of the three is quite a departure from "Soft Rain" in both instrumentation and its more dynamic feel--reminding me of the post-electro syncopations of the Clear or Dot labels. Whatever the inspiration, it is makes for a great, manic track that is sure to shake things up on the dancefloor.

"View 91 Fill" is [wait for it] a filler track, with a hyper bassline that fades away, leaving us with "Edit Micro Tune." This last cut brings in the four-count with of some semblance of a delay that makes this very funky before anything gets a chance to build. And, unlike the other cuts on this 12", Walley shies away from the traditional "layer upon layer" approach. Instead, this one seems to "shift" from beats to strings, each sound inbetween being a gradation between the two.

While I can't always put my finger on what CiM is up to on these tracks--all I know is that I want to hear more...


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