Release Date: Mar 11, 2014
Record label: Planet Mu
Genre(s): Electronic, Experimental Techno, Experimental Electronic
Since 2009, Nick Edwards (a middle aged man from Bristol, according to his Twitter) has self-released numerous EPs of electronic noise as Ekoplekz and been featured on underground labels Editions Mego and Punch Drunk too. Straddling the worlds of dance music and sound art, his output is too weird for the club, and his first LP ‘Unfidelity’ is no different. Initially, post-punkers Cabaret Voltaire seem obvious influences, as the record is saturated in reverb and harsh industrial sounds from opener ‘Trace Elements’ onwards.
Definably, Ekoplekz (Nick Edwards)’s Unfidelity is an undressing of deeply coded and textural music. Immediately comical in its shape and in its design, the record is full of damp-sounding instrumentation and dry knock-kneed drum patterns. Grotesque to the point of the melodic lines seeming to sloppily slip off of the rhythmic bone, Unfidelity oozes a sound that recalls strange combinations of hopeful and dystopian comic book environments, an image that, reinforced by the cover art, seems to parody or at least embody the very idea of the album’s parts.
Nick Edwards is a man of many aliases. The Bristolian, who curated the now defunct Gutterbreakz blog, has unleashed a panoply of releases under a variety of names, with Ekoplekz seeming to be the most prominent. Over the past few years, the producer has flirted with experimentation and improvisation, never really focusing on a distinct style or form.
Ekoplekz — Unfidelity (Planet Mu)Ekoplekz’s music is the equivalent of roast beef and Yorkshire pudding, a weird and quintessentially Limey concoction that could have only been spawned on these islands of tea and crumpets. This isn’t to say a non-Brit wouldn’t find anything to enjoy on Unfidelity, far from it, especially with clear Kraftwerk and Brian Eno influences bubbling under the surface, but it’s fair to say that a few signposts are liable to get lost in musical translation. Mentioning Kraftwerk and Eno is a good place to start, though, because essentially Ekoplekz’s music boils down to a subtle melding of old and new.
College was supposed to be a brave new world. Get out of Shitsville and the endless nights sitting in lay-bys getting stoned, or doing hot knives and playing darts in mates' garages. Start afresh. Reinvent yourself. Get a fucking life. Instead, most nights I ended up comatose in my friend Marky's ….