On the Radar: Benwaa – Sepia Woodlands (Exclusive Premiere)

The almighty Gibbon Records are back with another stunning release, this time from their ‘man-at-the-top’, Benwaa. The Waveform Transmitter’s Ste Knight takes a wander through ‘Sepia Woodlands’.

You ought to remeber that, at the back end of 2017, The Waveform Transmitter treated you all to an exclusive full album mix of Gibbon Records‘ 3-year anniversary compilation. The retrospective summed the label’s 3 years up perfectly, touching on electronica, progressive house and tech house.

Benwaa, the top dog at Gibbon, releases his latest EP, Sepia Woodlands, as a Beatport exclusive on January 15th, with the general release dropping on January 29th. It is safe to say that this latest release from the Gibbon stable is anything but sepia.

The EP kicks off with the euphoria drenched title track, which Benwaa. Percussively, the track starts out with a funky rhythm, rife with tribal grooves and organic instruments that echo the woodland of the title. Beautiful synth patterns enter the fray, as a rising tone is accompanied by a rich swell before the break, which swoops us down into deep pools of elation. Orbital-style plucks are thrust to the front of the mix, taking centre stage as they skip gracefully across a bubbling bassline and top end percussion.

Two remixes back up the original, first from Gibbon mainstay, Drew Miller. His rework adds a darker, more sinister edge to the track, by way of its menacing bass throbs. We’ve exited the Sepia Woodlands and are now creeping through significantly more ominous territory.

Higson is up for the next remix, his echoing a train journey through misty morning countryside, we are taken back past the original Sepia Woodland to our city dwelling, as our transport rattles past fields of crows, which appear as a blur as they take fright and lift to the skies. This is a wonderful take on the melodic, tech house sound.

The B-side sees Benwaa return with Rainbow Woodlands, which opens with a heavily distorted bassline and discombobulating pads that ebb and flow in and out of the mix. The euphoria present in Sepia Woodlands is present, albeit juxtaposed with more melancholic elements for complete emotive feel.

We are lucky enough to be able to premiere the whole EP, right here. Sit back, relax, light whatever herbal remedy you prefer, and let your mind take a stroll through Benwaa‘s Sepia Woodlands (pre-sale link, here).

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