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Album of the Week: Conforce - Escapism

Our album of the week comes from Conforce, with a beautiful piece of Escapism.

Artist: Conforce
Album: Escapism
Label: Delsin Holland
Release Date: 12/12/2011

Boris Bunnik, the gentleman behind this release, claims he doesn't “tend to think in styles”, and that “good music explains itself”. After one listen to his latest long player that ethic immediately jumps to the fore.

Because Escapism is one of those rare moments wherein coherent motifs of house and techno present themselves, unabashedly, but it would take a thoughtless critic to brand the LP as simply either one of those two central electronic genres. And that's not just thanks to the heart on sleeve dub accents present throughout the tracklist.

Then again, if one word can describe these contents it may well be dubby. We open with noises that threaten to bring on the sparse, solid industrial atmospherics of Perc. Then the track in question, Revolt DX, instead reveals flailing percussive hooks, and warm, simple organ tones, the latter of which are then carried, bar-to-bar, adding to the pendulum-like feel and positioning the arrangement more in line with the John Tejada school of sound.

Elsewhere things do darken, and veer off further to the left of the playing field, ensuring the first tune can easily be argued as the most universal. In contrast, the slow electro-techno outing Lonely Run is a prime example of the more challenging efforts included; a stumbling, rumbling bassline jerks over sluggish kick drums while synth refrains filter out onto successive knife-edge breakdowns. All of which create a pensive ambience that's far from dancefloor friendly, but if used correctly would clearly imply the DJ was ready to pounce.

And it's at this tempo Conforce is at his most deft, as the gentile techy awakening Diversion proves. All crystalline chimes, plodding drums and live claps, expansive keyboards expand, and belie what was originally a relatively hollow sounding arrangement.

The result references the greats of depth, from camp Compost's less poppy, jazzy fare, to the immersive output of Swayzak. Comparisons and descriptions to one side though, the reality is Bunnik's latest full-length offering is one that should equally submerge minds and hook feet, and so demands repeat listens, both in solitude and with post-club company. Impressive.

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