On the Radar: Axefield – Pressure Drop

Axefield acid techno

Dutch producer, Axefield, releases his latest EP, Pressure Drop, this week. The Waveform Transmitter’s Ste Knight absorbs four slabs of acid-drenched goodness.

Everyone loves a bit of acid, don’t they? Particularly when it is smothered all over sun-soaked beats and melodious keys, as with Axefield‘s latest offering on Atomnation, Pressure Drop.

Axefield‘s EP kicks off with the strangely titled Ostrich Ride to Other. While the track name may seem to be cryptic at first, we soon see that the track does exactly as it says on the tin. The thumping house beat, reminiscent of a large bird thudding across the terrain, is joined in the mix by a heavily filtered, swirling synth, which is conjures imagery of sandy wisps being blown across desert dunes. The acid bassline continuously moves the track on, ebbing and flowing in and out of the track giving it a heady heatstroke that invokes languishing lazily in a hazy tropical climate.

Walk Under the Falls cranks the energy up a notch. The track is introduced by a thick, slightly distorted kick drum, which teases in lilting pads as more samples are segued into the tapestry Axefield is weaving before our very eyes. The Dutch producer carries the thematic random spoken samples from Ostrich Ride into Walk Under the Falls. We can hear the sound of a woman laughing and talking in a dreamlike fashion. Perhaps this is heatstroke? Whatever it is, the track once again plunges us into an acid bath for the second half, squelchy bass and acid blips taking over the mix.

Track three, Last Minute Man, opens in lush tropical gardens, with birdsong coaxing the listener deeper into the foliage. The humidity rises as we wander through the equatorial vegetation, huge drops of water rolling off the ends of bright green leaves into puddles below. It isn’t long before the acid begins to enter the fray, adding to the fantastical qualities of the track. Birds chirrup away throughout as the occasional bongo comes into play, giving the track an almost tribal feel.

Our final track, Power of Resonance brings things right back to the dancefloor, with a thick bottom end that is punctuated by a piano house-style riff. While we don’t lose the exotic altogether (the track contains toms and features some rather nifty cowbell), this track is perfect for the club. The acid is never far away, poking it’s head up over the parapet but maintaining a back seat in this track, only appearing fleetingly around the midpoint.

Axefield Pressure Drop is released on Atomnation on September 8th.

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