Elgato ElgatoTonight / Blue
HESSLE AUDIO (HES015, 12” + digital)
If at the time the word “funkstep” was used –to no avail, as we all know– to identify the more advanced, liquid or, let’s use one simple word, “interesting” extreme of funky house, then this 12” debut by Elgato should be acknowledged as a funkstep record from start to finish. It is because it takes elements of that syncopated rhythm and those open spaces to end up with a kind of garage that has all the qualities of progressive: oscillating and hypnotic synthesiser notes, carefully elaborated breaks, voices that create an emotional landscape, the feeling of travelling. Elgato is a widely known DJ in London –if you’re roaming the underground circuit, of course– who with these two tracks makes the move towards production, in order to establish himself as a new name on a scene which, as he knows as well as anyone, is overly populated to saturation point. So this move is a one he put some thought into, not a hazardous one: both “Tonight” and “Blue” look to add something new to an area we already know only too well. “Tonight” is the funkiest track of the two, sounding most like Lil’ Silva, Don Daneeka and DVA, although towards the end Elgato adds a luminous detail –as if Joy Orbison helped him out a bit– that frees him of the tyranny of the formula. Much more open and emotional is “Blue”, which uses female vocals, cut-up and passionate, as if they were love sighs. This is one of those 12”s that doesn’t change the rules, but does make your life better.
Claude T. Hill
Elgato - Tonight
Elgato - Blue