2016 will go down as a year of great activity for Gerard Hanson. The low-profile Texan producer released his first E.R.P. record in three years and now comes Acido 22, the first Convextion record in almost a decade. It was this project that Hanson originally gained attention during the mid-’90s and which has yielded a remarkable series of EPs and self-titled album.
The reason for the adulation that Convextion’s work receives lies in its author’s ability to create music that is steeped in the tradition of Detroit techno, with a particular focus on Carl Craig, Red Planet and Derrick May, but which sounds utterly distinctive and belongs only to him. That sounds like quite an achievement, but take a listen to practically any Convextion record and the synths and strings have an almost supernaturally beautiful resonance that can only have come from Hanson’s studio.
These signature elements are audible on the untitled B-side track on Acido 22. Set against a backdrop of fuzzy percussion and drums, Hanson creates a soundscape that features melodies that whisper like angels alongside a suspenseful, almost frosty lead synth. It’s spine-tinglingly evocative while also having the effect, common to Convextion work, of spiriting the listener away from their surroundings. On the other side, there’s a similarly themed track. Devoid of a kick, it also sees Hanson pepper the arrangement with melancholic synths that warble their way over a looped tonal sequence.
The only real difference is the occasional break into skewed, doubled up percussion – possibly an indirect stylistic nod to the label he is releasing on – but like the untitled B-side, this is a mesmerising piece of mood music. Hopefully we won’t have to wait close to another decade for Hanson to produce a follow-up.
A. Track 1
B. Track 2