Toxic might be Loco Dice’s first record this year, but we shouldn’t give the guy a hard time about it. He’s been busy. Embarking on Richie Hawtin’s ‘Beyond EDM’ tour of US colleges, helping Uncle Sven as a resident at the Cocoon night in Amnesia, throwing his ‘Under 300’ gigs around Europe and continuing to oversee things at Desolat, it’s no surprise that Mr. Dice hasn’t found time to get in the studio.
Auxotox opens proceedings (and the trend of silly, meaningless names), its powerful bassline offering firm funk undertones against a backdrop of leftfield synth, weird samples and delayed flanger effects. The stabbing chords that emerge at the five minute mark set this out as a winner; a druggy after-hours tech-house storm in a teacup.
Following it, Dextox compounds thundering kickdrums with a flexing, muscular bassline. An unforeseeable post-breakdown brass derive makes for a second half that has endless oomph, the sustained urgency and tension bringing all the disparate elements into one shimmering, relentless finale.
On the flipside we have Neurotox, the most techno-orientated cut present, it’s nine minutes of unforgiving pads, muted samples and syncopating synths. Very functional, but the attention to texture ensure it’s anything but dull.
In the same manner, Retox brings proceedings to conclusion. A trippy minimal house cut the weird delay samples, nostalgic bleeps and blips and unsettling thug vocal samples make it a fitting end.
Four tracks of steam-powered minimal and tech-house, with meticulous attention to detail, this EP is reconfirmation of the traits and endeavours that Loco Dice built his musical empire upon. Thankfully, not eponymously titled, Toxic EP finds a Loco Dice that is clearly as invigorated and excited by production as ever. Let’s just hope he doesn’t leave it such a long time before his next release…
|Artist: Loco Dice
Title: Toxic EP
Our Rating: 8/10