TRG – Tower Block review

Cosmin Nicolae, the Romanian supplier of fine flavours of funky, dubstep and experimental house, has an impressive track record and diamond studded production history. With a slew of releases on such renowned labels as Tempa, Hessle Audio, Hotflush, Naked Lunch, Soul Motive and more, “Tower Block” marks his debut 12” on Untold’s Hemlock Recordings.

A patter of clip clop beats and hissing percussion, interspersed with the subtlest of cheeky blimps, kicks things off on the A Side. Crackling, white noise type shuffles and a warping, hiccupping rhythm lead into a chirruping number, rebounding with curious idiosyncratic energy. Low-end flurries of bass compliment the delicious melody in the most alluring of ways – a disconcerting, dark room vibe, exacerbated by a palette of sounds which bounce around the soundscape like rogue elements.

On the flipside, “Breton Brut” sees TRG tuning into more bizarre experimentalism, utilising a strange combing rhythm, a similar booming bass to that of “Tower Block”. Sweeping SFX, like nocturnal creatures whistling, shuffling and whispering between each other plague the track. The track builds gradually, layer upon layer, yet never quite settles. There is a pervasive sense of anticipation and impending doom as the drums change their pace and style around the half way mark to a more frantic tribal, out of breath sound, pacing over the top in the lengthy six minute venture.

Belinda Rowse