Machinedrum – SXLND EP
Travis Stewart has made a conspicuous habit of excellence in the last year. In Room(s) and Sepalcure (his project with Praveen Sharma, aka Braille), 2011 had records whose holistic conception of juke, jungle, house and hip-hop – all nestled in the pillowy, ambient soundscape the Berlin native is renowned for – were entirely representative of the extent of flux in contemporary electronic music.
SXLND picks up the baton at a slower tempo, employing a familiar array of soul-saturated vocals and rich synth arrangements on No Respect. Van Vogue and DDD venture into newer territories; the former employing dog barks and brickie wolf-whistles alongside a muscular arpeggio, the latter an idiosyncratic homage to 90s US house music. Few superlatives do SXLND sufficient justice, so we won't bother.