Ron Morelli is known as the driving force behind the ultra-prolific but always engaging L.I.E.S label. The challenge now facing the straight talking DJ and occasional producer is to step from behind the shadows of the behemoth he has created and to carve out his own identity. Surfacing on Dominick Fernow’s Hospital Productions label, Spit is Morelli’s own statement, but it is one that remains inextricably linked to the aesthetic that underpins L.I.E.S.
A grey film of grime covers the eight tracks on this album, and it conjures up that uncomfortable feeling of spending a sticky summer’s day in the city. Spit gnaws and bites at the senses, has a sensibility that’s twitchy, ill at ease and restless. In the same way that L.I.E.S appears to be a platform for any thing that Morelli and his colleagues are feeling, no matter how extreme or obtuse, so too does Spit throw out a kaleidoscope of sound.
There’s “Crack Microbes” a hyperactive, banging techno groove, powered by slamming drums. “Sledgehammer 2” sees Morelli stay in the same terrain, as a foundry hammer bashes out shrill, noisy emissions, while “Fake Rush” is tortured minimalism, as if Morelli decided to deliver an especially warped take on Tan-Ru or Minimal Man material from the 90s. The other dance floor moment is “Modern Paranoia”, where the L.I.E.S. boss marries steely percussion and relentless drums with claustrophobic analogue squeals and squalls, while a murky, grainy bass holds it all together.
The rest of Spit descends into abstract compositions. “No Real Reason” has an off-beat rhythm supporting cavernous, swirling textures, while both “Radar Version” and “Slow Drown” are dead pace affairs, where shadowy sound scapes and eerie chimes prevail. Rather than living up to the outsider tag that many have attributed to L.I.E.S, Spit was conceived in the epicentre of a big city, where a million different tales play out every day. Don’t miss this unique story.
1. Radar Version
2. Modern Paranoia
3. Crack Microbes
4. Sledghammer II
5. Fake Rush
6. Director Of…
7. No Real Reason
8. Slow Drown