Errortica - Safely Stowed (Les Yeux Orange, 2020)
The renowned French label up the stakes once more with the stunning debut vinyl EP from Russian producer Errortica, which will take you on a journey to the deepest crevasses of the soul and right back again.
To curate a wide variety of outlets to demonstrate your interests, sounds and passions is quite a feat, and for some it comes very naturally indeed. For anyone or group interested in starting a label or some kind of similar ongoing musical project, its always important to begin with a foundation that is rock solid, yet contains a lot of room to grow, and that often comes from the enthusiasm and adoration that flows from the heads who started it all. An identity is what begins to form with passing releases, DJ sets and online presences, with that identity represented by the music showcased, released or mixed, and in turn this allows listeners to become drawn to those who become enamoured with the sounds these labels look to push. We are pulled closer primarily by the totality of the gifts offered to us, a blend of elements that channels perhaps into instantly recognisable features that we all know and love about common trends but spends the time to offer up something new, something bold, something intrinsic to that label and that label alone. Some labels pride themselves on their individuality, inviting producers to release on their imprints with the idea of their sound acting both as a furthering of their audial values but also bringing something new to the table, a new flavour that aligns with the core of the sound and branches out into new territories. When the mindset dwells within the constantly expanding, the eternally spreading and the overtly accommodating, then you are onto a winner in being able to continually explore the boundaries of sound and feel, an understanding that when set in place at the beginning of a label's life cycle has the ability to represent as wide a variety of stylings as possible. Its about representing and conveying a feeling, a presence within all the dance music which gets released that becomes synonymous with that imprint, a sound that becomes ingrained in music lovers across the globe, a relationship built on the flows that occur when engaging with tunes that sing to the rhythms of life. A resource, a tool kit, a guide of sorts that helps us see more and understand more about the essences that dictate contemporary dance music sensibilities, with the music acting as gateways into further inroads of enrichment. It becomes somewhat of a beautiful journey, as we follow and await with baited breath the next instalment that will further open our minds to new and exciting opportunities. When a label is capable of this, you truly are onto a winner, and for some imprints the excitement never gets put on hold for one second, as we are continually carried away on a tidal wave of intrigue and adoration.
For many, sourcing music comes from the internet, namely a little website called Youtube, and for all the channels that premiere phenomenal music, Les Yeux Orange remains very much at the top of the pile, perhaps due to the fact that it remains so much more than simply an online music gold mine. Founded back in 2013 by Noctambulo and Humangigz as a musical collective, with producer Alan Dente joining soon after, they started off with club nights alongside their revered Youtube channel, before starting two labels in 2016, Les Yeux Orange and sub label Good Plus, both of which have become adored over the years for the musical content and sublime vibes. Les Yeux have curated a identity that runs through everything they do, from the premiering of excellent music through to their wild and diverse Dj sets, through to the music they release on their labels, it all acts together as a package that remains inherently total in its audial excellence. Their Youtube channel has continually pushed brilliant music, with many music lovers discovering tunes from smaller labels across the globe, with an emphasis on diversity, representation of sound and all round feel good vibes that has meant people always trust in the tracks that crop up on the channel. For this writer in particular, it was one of the gateways into dance music a few years ago, and that thought is echoed in the hearts and minds of so many others, who have journeyed along so many paths found within their extensive online playlists. The tracks premiered showcase just how dedicated Les Yeux are to providing a audial tone, with many records found here shining individually but acting alongside one another with ease and brilliance, which has helped to craft the adoration that so many feel for the resource. The next step logically was to form some imprints, in order to channel their passions even further, and the music that flows from both is something to behold as it dips and weaves through the spectrums very much the same as their Youtube channel, the two becoming increasingly interlinked as time passes by. From the Les Yeux Orange imprint, which focuses more so on the driving progressive electronic side of things, some selected highlights to check out include the superbly progressive and tonally enriching sounds that flow from the Wav Fuzz produced 'Cold Fresh Air' release, the label's debut record, that landed back in 2016; the gorgeous tones and hazy horizons found within the N.Stal produced 'La Plage', that also came out in 2016; the wickedly diverse and eclectic sounds that resonate from the joint Mytron & Ofofo EP 'Topography', that arrived in 2018; the inherently deep and emotive heaters found on the Ringard EP 'Lacrima Rossa', that also landed in 2018; and finally, the excellent electro tinged mini master piece that is the M.S.L produced 'Periphery'. From the Good Plus sub label, which focuses on fantastic edits, some select highlights include the now famous debut, 'Coco/Jungle', released back in 2016; the sultry cosmic grooves found on the '1979' EP, that landed in 2017; and the excellent pumped up cuts found on the 'Ghost Dog' EP, that arrived last year. In all, Les Yeux have crafted a spellbinding array of dance orientated material, be it from their youtube presence through to the records they cut and issue, it all flows together so effortlessly, bound by a well written narrative that continually binds people to the groove of it all. All facets of the dance are covered, enriching those who have broad tastes and emotive outlooks with all the good vibrations they could ask for, and that is testament to the heads behind it all. We're sure you have been graced by Les Yeux's presence before, but we still reckon you have the time to check them out a little bit further. Its a journey that remains seemingly endless, and we are all for it.
And now, we arrive at their latest release, the debut vinyl EP from Russian producer Sasha Balykova a under her Errortica name, 'Safely Stowed'. In recent years Balykova has demonstrated some serious talent in her Dj sets, with her mixing style showcased on Test FM and the 2019 Vilnius Boiler Room, and the time now seems right for her to demonstrate her production credentials. Being a graduate of music school, the music found here remains impeccably constructed and arranged, with the overall feel one of spellbinding melodies and deep heavy beats, a sound that is incredibly well rounded for a debut record. The music wraps itself around the mind, channelling into the wayward notions we all want to pursue when listening to music, as we are carried along by pulses and swells that shake the walls and the bodies that dance within it. The record is simply yet another incredible chapter to add into the ongoing Les Yeux story, and this record is one of their most compelling yet. There's even scope for an amazing Anatolian Weapons remix to be thrown into the mix, and so without further delay, lets take a dive into this captivating soundscape.....
Up first comes the title track, and we begin with all the ingredients being shown to us as an indication of what is to flow next. The key sequences flux within the underbelly of the track, crafting a rhythm of sorts for the drums and additional key lines to align themselves to, and when the percussion moves into its fully evolved form, the heart rate really starts to get going. The incredible mix of elements and features is testament to Balykova's arrangement skills, with the ongoing flow exceedingly clear cut in allowing for all the notes and sequences to be highlighted and bought to life, as our minds are firmly placed right next to the very core of the progression. Its intoxicating to the point of euphoria, a slow chuggy flow that contains so many points of interest, as the structures take the time to switch up their densities and rhythms in order to create a seemingly never ending narrative that weaves and dips with the times effortlessly. We are carried along by the keys, the softly spoken chords that resonate from deep within the track, their touch counteracting so well with the deep dubby undertones that flow underneath the drums, a inherently complex sound that comes across so well to the listener. As openers go, that one is very very strong indeed. Up next comes 'Never-Ending Fun', and this one starts off with the razor sharp drumming patterns leading the way. They are quickly joined by the pulsating bass line, that fits itself into proceedings very well indeed, as the drums look to add further elements into the mix. Before long, we are joined by a series of melodic sequences, ones that conjure up images of the heat of the night, or a vast landscape that unravels out in front of us, a highly visceral tone that does much to spark interest and emotion inside us. The breakdown sees the keys shining in all their emotive glory, from the bottom end bass to the highest chord driven peaks, its simply glorious to get involved within, to understand every facet, to feel and enjoy every piece of the puzzle. The drums slam right back into view soon enough, as the vocal sample whispers over the bedrock of sound, perking our interest as it spins a word driven narrative to compliment the instruments, with the flow of the track still moving onwards with incredible energy and power. The tune moves between the lines once more, taking the time to move and change between gears, the structures constantly moving between differing layers in order to drive the progressions onwards and upwards. Its simply irresistible, easily one of this years best momentums, one that will ring out across the lands for years to come. Unstoppable.
Up next comes 'Master Slave', and this one begins with some gorgeous swells indeed. The chordal lines have a wonderful sense of dynamism to them, with two lines working alongside each other to craft a very ethereal atmosphere indeed, with the chords setting up the drumming patterns that emerge very nicely indeed. The structure now moves onwards, with the main keys dropping out to draw our focus to the groove, with yet another brilliant bass line moving into view within the mid section of the track, as the flow then looks to reintroduce the chord sequence, this time showcasing an excellent free flowing feel. There remains an intense focus on sonics within this cut, and this emphasis really comes to the fore as the track slides through its breakdown and looks to introduce a wonderful acid line, with a sprinkling of chords and keys floating in and out view with such elegance and feel, a continual flow that has become one of the cornerstones of this EP. The track finds time for one more breakdown, this one extending out even further into the outer realms, as driving chord lines move up and down, crafting a overarching feel that is highly intense and expertly executed, with the sharp transition back into the core driving sound tasting so sweet indeed. The acid line weaves and dips as it traverses the plains one more time, taking us away to new realms that seemed so far away before, but now feel closer than ever. A real stunner. To wrap things up on this excellent record, we have the Anatolian Weapons Acid Club Mix of the previous cut, and its quite an interpretation indeed. The track begins off with the creative drumming sequence, with an ever so slightly melodic bass element pounding right through proceedings, which seems to act as an anchor for continual melodic elements to begin to revolve around. The bass line soon follows, occupying the middle ground once more, as the keys begin to make their presence known, taking on a form and flow reminiscent of the original cut, as they move and dip between differing sequences with ease and feel. Anatolian Weapons then switches things up in quite spectacular fashion, as the acid line smashes through into the mix, breathing a heavy dosage of energy into the ongoing narrative, providing a wonderful sense of groove and movements onwards and upwards. Its one final spellbinding narrative that becomes woven into our hearts and minds, a flow that transfixes and resonates so brightly, a record of such excellence and interest, and one that will ring out within our consciousness for days to come.
There's so much to be celebrated about this record, and that is due to the excellent mind of the producer behind it. Balykova has crafted a brilliant sound, one that relies on musical complexity to craft progressions that remain unmatched, the vibe she pushes defined by curation of emotive burning sensations and grooves that are stitched together by transitional excellence and understanding. Each cut remains an ever shifting journey, one that carries along the listener on a wave of quietly spoken euphoria that touches and caresses us with its delicate tone, all the while providing a deep set sound that would move mountains if played at the right frequency. Its another glorious chapter in the Les Yeux legacy, and we cannot wait to hear what both parties will come up with next. A real stunner, in every sense of the word.
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