There’s been plenty of reason to stay closely attuned to the Throne Of Blood release schedule over the past year or so, as the New York based label has successfully cast off the ‘founded by The Rapture’ tagline. Instead, the focus has switched to a succession of Trans Atlantic drops from the likes of Mugwump, Populette, Harkin & Raney and most recently Paul Woolford and Mat Playford under the Ford Inc alias. Amidst these more established names, another exciting facet of the label has been the continual emergence of Bicep.
Nominally two thirds of the team that run Feel My Bicep, all the knowledge of vintage and current strains of house, disco and techno that ensure the site sits apart from the majority of the hype obsessed bloggerati has seemingly been poured into their productions. Having impressed on their Throne of Blood debut Darwin, which featured a bewitchingly brilliant Retro/Grade edit, Bicep serve further notice of their potential with this second release for the label.
Cunningly titled EP2, Messrs Ferguson and McBrair adopt a suitably smooth analogue poise on opening gambit “Silk” with sparse 808 excursions allowing the acid tinged rhythms the focus of attention they deserve. “Purple Sweat” slows proceedings down somewhat, with a thick gloopy bassline that gradually accrues a menacing tone amidst a cascading shower of textural light and percussion. Revealing a taste for pastry, “Choux” is perhaps the most accomplished production here, with a rough low end thrust primed for the warehouses offset by searching chord washes and gently bubbling acid, before all vacate to make space for a simply gorgeous piano refrain. It’s a complement to their productions that the accompanying, tightly wound refix of “Silk” from veteran producer Mark Verbos does in no way overshadow proceedings.