With A Sagittariun dropping his latest EP, Fahrenheit 451, on his Elastic Dreams label, The Waveform Transmitter’s Joe Evans takes a listen to three tracks in prep for the upcoming album.
With two book title references on this EP and another called The Jupiter Chronicles, it should be safe to say that A Sagittariun is familiar with the work of sci-fi writer, Ray Bradbury. Perhaps no surprise, as his work has often been referred to as “cosmic techno”. Based in Bristol, A Sagittariun’s work is deeply rooted in the dance scene, but what makes it stand out is those spacey diversions. Releasing mainly on his own Elastic Dreams imprint, he has built up quite a back catalogue. This EP is a taster for his new third album, which is to be released later this year.
The EP opens with The Golden Apple, a deep, grainy, bass synth, seemingly drawing you into a dark, post-industrial, night-driving landscape. Steady, on-beat, reverse-reverb bass drums drop in and out, raising the urgency. But, when a lighter, oriental-tinged synth line comes in, the mood changes into something almost transcendent.
The next track, Blue Lotus, focuses more on rhythm and sound effects. The beats are softly crunched, eventually giving way to four-square bass drums with more complex patterns over the top, as well as some ambiguous harmonies. The closing track, Liebe Tanzen, is an unrelenting stomp with disco attributes. The synth lines work well on this providing a good counterbalance to the bass. To be honest, I could have done with a bit more synth chords on this one, just to give a bit of relief from the constant drums.
Overall, all three tracks give the feeling that they are quietly evolving throughout, nothing ever repeats in exactly the same way. There’s a lot more hiding in the background too, suitably crunched drum fills, thin flanged effects and sounds that almost sing at you (maybe I imagined that last one). Everything feels considered but overall the approach is simple, don’t introduce too many ideas and overwhelm the track. It’s a difficult balance and well executed. I look forward to hearing the whole album when it comes out.
You can grab the full release, now (buy link), but in the meantime, take a listen to a preview of the EP, below.