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Lunice – Stacker Upper Review

Big things have been expected from Lunice Femin Pierre II for some time. Ever since his first remixes slipped out on Big Dada and Top Billin’ back in 2009, the Montreal based dancer turned producer has been big news in leftfield hip-hop circles. Those who groove to the sounds of Mike Slott, Rustie, Hudson Mohawke and Nosaj Thing have been waiting patiently for a proper Lunice record to emerge.

Thanks to Glasgow’s premiere Luckyme imprint, that wait is now over. But is Stacker Upper, the 21 year-old’s first official single release, any good? Thankfully, it is. Whilst nowhere near as far-out, experimental or genre redefining as some of his LuckyMe labelmates, Lunice still offers a fresh new twist on hip-hop. It’s just that he makes music for people who dance, rather than worthy men with microscopic beards and oversized headgear.

The real genius is the simplicity of his sound. Somehow, Lunice is able to make memorable, hummable tracks with only a handful of elements. Take lead cut “Hitmanes Anthem” which despite being little more than a beat, bassline and rising/falling keyboard melody,  sounds immeasurably big. The same can be said of the bassbin bothering “Hip Pop” or the  analogue freakazoid crunk out of “Purp Walk”. Even the EP’s most complex track, the wonderfully sweet and melodic “Fancy Forty” comes cloaked in Lunice’s trademark production and there’s also a great Rustie rework to contend with.

As debuts go, it’s impressive and should be an essential purchase for anyone interested in the kaleidoscopic new world of next-level hip-hop. Expect even greater things from Lunice in the years to come.

Matt Anniss