Release Date: Oct 29, 2012
Record label: Hessle Audio
Genre(s): Electronic, Club/Dance
Eight tracks, Pangaea? To paraphrase British comedy genius Tony Hancock, that's nearly an album full. But no, the Hessle Audio co-founder's first single of 2012 is a "double EP," despite totaling 43 minutes. It's also further proof that Kevin McAuley's music, which has been informed by such a range of electronic music influences, edges closer to trad techno with every release.
Plenty of words have been used to describe the scene-defining UK dance music of Leeds-based Hessle Audio label. "Funny" has not been one of them. Yet there it is, in the opening minutes of label co-founder Pangaea's Release: Missy Elliott, imploring via sample, "Do your thang/ Just make sure you ahead of the game." Again and again, until Timbaland urges the same.
PangaeaRelease[Hessle Audio; 2012]By Will Ryan; December 3, 2012Purchase at: Insound (Vinyl) | Amazon (MP3 & CD) | iTunes | MOGTweetPangaea and his label, Hessle Audio, have been working with a clear purpose for the last two years. Starting with a six-track self-titled mision statement back in 2010, Pangaea has helped lead the current crop of bass music heavyweights out of traditional garage and dubstep dance molds and into techno-infused weirdness grounded in a full swath of UK hardcore sounds, giving birth to jaw-droppers like Objekt's "Cactus" and Bandshell's "Dust March" on Hessle earlier in the year as well stuff like Joy Orbison's string of 2012 collaborations with Boddika and whatever the hell Blawan was off doing this year. Pangaea's newest outing, a "double EP" by the name of Release, gracefully typifies the current state of Hessle, sliding ever closer to tried-and-true techno while whittling London sounds to their barest bones.
It's highly appropriate that when I loaded the promo for Release into iTunes the genre tag read simply "Hessle Audio. " After all, Pangaea, along with other acts on Hessle's roster, have all been instrumental in cementing the label's rich and cohesive sound: a dance music sub-genre in its own right. As with other Hessle discs, Release offers abundant low-end and clear, lean arrangements that nod in the direction of a variety styles: funk, garage, techno and even the elegant simplicity of some of the early Warp releases.
Producer’s progress from pure dubstep is marked by moments of compelling abstraction. Chris Power 2012 A release schedule of eight singles in six years is virtual inactivity measured against the hyperactive output of some electronic music producers. But London-based Pangaea (Kevin McAuley) seems to be more interested in maintaining a certain standard of quality control than many of his peers.