Under the artistic direction of Kingdom, the Night Slugs label started their US division, Fade To Mind. The sounds are similar – energetic club music, whipping, underground like the mother label and adapted to the American rave scene, which right now is finding new inspiration in electronic hip-hop. It sounds marvellous, on paper: Kingdom is one of the producers who are the epitome (along with FaltyDL and Machinedrum) and one of the best examples of the best post-dubstep patterns applied to worn-out local IDM mechanisms. It seems like the releases are going to have that chopping 808 rhythm and unnerving background, and the first signing, Nguzunguzu, is perfect for the occasion, a duo from LA operating between elastic and broken house, the spectral post-dubstep of labels like Tri Angle (but with muscle) and flashes of madness in the vein of Aphex Twin or Venetian Snares at half speed.
And the tracks reach the requisite standard for a hype such as Fade To Mind. On the iPod they are insistent and tormenting, and on a good soundsystem they are incredible. The progression of the witchy traces of “Timesup” to the altered, stealthy rave sound of “Water Bass Power” take us towards the pure abstraction of the basslines, and the tribal breaks and psychedelic effects of “Wake Sleep” are brilliant. The remixes, as a counterweight, are more radio and indie-friendly: Kingdom decreases the amount of dark soul on “Timesup” and Total Freedom slows down the early stages of “Wake Sleep” so it’s almost a horror film soundtrack. Here’s a heads up: beware of what can come from Fade To Mind. It could become event better than it’s mother label.