Now this is brilliant: a new ep by EDMX that takes me on a trip back twenty years ago! Ed Upton, as you might know, has been producing for more than fifteen years under numerous aliases but is mostly known as Ed DMX, DMX Krew or EDMX. Two features are prominent in his work, namely his versatility in regard to styles and genres, from classic electro over (booty) bass, pure techno and house to experimental electronic music and ambient, and his predilection for using analogue machines. The Dutch label Shipwrec has just released his “153 Mission EP” which, in turn, consists of four slabs of hardcore acid coming straight out of a real TB-303.
There’s something odd about this record because it’s most definitely old school in style and approach, nevertheless it sounds superbly fresh, as if this specific kind of raw music has just been (re)invented by Upton. Surely, the main reason for this is that it gets hardly played anymore nowadays in the average techno venue. But it is also because all four tracks are some of the best takes on acid you’ll have ever experienced. To quote a lame rock band: “Even better than the real thing”. This can undoubtedly be said of “What The…” which is a monster that‘ll spit fire over most dance floors. Its beat thrashes in a fast tempo while these well-known high-pitched acid sounds shred your brain to pieces.
And yes, I am very familiar with this kind of auditory havoc. I’ve devoured it since I was sixteen, when I went out for the first times in Belgian clubs such as Cherry Moon and Montini (where Stanny Franssen a.k.a. G-Force was a resident, among others). As it goes with one’s first contact with a certain music scene, it was extremely impressive and unforgettable. It stuck. This further explains why I’m so exhilarated by a track such as “Grab The Beat” with its simple 4/4 and rampant 303 tones. It evokes the darkness interspersed by stroboscopic lights and lasers as well as the wild enthusiasm of clubbers in those days.
But I must emphasise my point earlier made: this is only partly about sheer nostalgia. What’s more, EDMX has managed very well to twist together the vivacity, power, vitalism, excitement and fun of hardcore acid in this ep. And that, for me, is a great achievement. Get it and if you like to have it on old-fashioned vinyl, be sure to be quick because the pressing is limited to 150 copies.
EDMX – “153 Mission EP” is out since November 19th
1. 153 Mission
2. Card Slot
3. What The…
4. Grab The Beat