1. Billy Hologram
2. So Malleable
6. Head Bocs
- 1 Up mini album (Warp Records)
no better label to throw down the gauntlet and challenge
your ears to a duel than Warp Records. '1 Up' by Steve Milanese
is no exception as it starts off sounding like Flat Eric
taking a trip to a ragga club, its Mr Oizo bassline and
booty shaking beats rapped over by what seems to be the
terrifying bark of Satan's dog. This sets the decidedly
uneasy tone as Milanese indulges in some typically tricky
Warp-style beat-mangling and rams some mid-nineties jungle,
complete with shouts of "Original", "Easy"
and "Geezer", through the musical mincer.
squelching bass and snatches of slowed down breakbeat trauma
couple with a Stephen Hawking-style robot vocal on 'Cowboy'
but this is just Milanese toying with us until the real
terror is unleashed. The onslaught begins with the dark
atmospherics and tension-building sound effects of 'Iacon'
that give way to a stumbling, staggering drum and bass rhythm
driving us on through gunshot beats and evil, grinding,
clanking groans from hell. This is pure Armageddon for the
eardrums, banging, pounding and freaking you out before
exploding in a doomsday buzz.
is given as we are dragged deeper still into the sinister,
dark and fiery pits by the even more obscure, formless racket
of 'Flex'. Momentary relief comes courtesy of a quivering
little melody that sounds almost too nervous to impose itself
before it inevitably gets swept away and drowned by another
tidal wave of clattering drums. The panic attack continues
with 'Head Bocs' as tense strings are shot down by jackhammer
rhythms and maniacal laughter to end an anxiety-riddled
journey of shattered rhythms, demonic noise and general
manages to produce music that is more menacing than the
Aphex Twin on a bad trip, and that is quite
some achievement, though whether that is something to be
proud of is a matter of opinion. Sounding at times like
a one man band falling down the stairs this is either clever
and challenging or unlistenable and challenged depending
on how you want to see it. Either way, it's certainly not