Review: Saytek – Improvisations (EXCLUSIVE TRACK PREMIERE)

Live hardware paragon, Saytek, returns to long-player terrain with his new album, Improvisations. The Waveform Transmitter‘s Ste Knight takes a listen and presents an exclusive premiere of the brilliant album track, The Future Then (Live). Check it out, below.

This week sees the inimitable Saytek  – real name Joseph Keevil – dropping his brand new LP – Improvisations – via the very well-respected live-artists imprint Awesome Soundwave which is, of course, the brainchild of Carl Cox and Christopher CoeCox has been championing Saytek for some time now, and with good reason; the producer and live artist is a wizard behind the controls, and is continuously pushing his sound to the limits, making use of a wide range of hardware to manufacture an incredible listening experience.

Saytek has been producing for a couple of decades, now, having seen his first release back in 2001, when he dropped his Orange Drive / V3.8 Dub on Console. But, it is in more recent years that things really have taken an upturn, with artists like Darren Emerson, Mr. C, and Kevin Saunderson all getting behind his sound and pushing it via their channels. Impressive stuff indeed. It was in 2018 that Keevil released his last LP – Live Stories – via Emerson’s Detone imprint.

Improvisations follows form, as Saytek puts together an album that is, as with Live Stories, 100% live recordings. This is pretty much as close as you’ll get to witnessing Joseph playing out live, without actually being stood in front of him and his panel of hardware. The album kicks off in genuine Keevil fashion, with Spherical (Live) injecting energy from the start as we are treated to a solid house track with Chicago running through its veins.

Soul Machines (Live) follows a similarly housey path, with vocals commanding the breakdowns throughout, before we start to err onto more technofied terrain with the zealous percussion and growling synth work of jam Back on the Circuit (Live). It is his masterful use of hardware that allows Saytek to span across the house and techno spectrum, which Keevil demonstrates throughout the entirety of his scintillating long-player.

More acid as we are drawn into Acid Jam Seven (Live) by glitched out vocal snippets, and a dexterous expo of how the little silver box should be treated. No Effective Control (Live) takes on a house sound that could be likened to that of Octave One, before Move This (Live) builds on the sound of Detroit house with a wonderful midway synth breakdown that welcomes in a banging techno kick drum – one for the warehouse and potentially an excellent track upon which to close out a set with a bang.

Broken Process (Live) revisits the snappy vocal elements, while strings swell around the headspace, before we are launched into the rave-nostalgia of Feel It Raw (Live). “Can You Feel It?” yes, we fucking can and it feels amazing! Fixed Interval (Live) offers some monstrous kicks, which segue in a delectable synth and panic siren sound – not one for the faint of heart.

Hard Chord (Live) is just as you would imagine. Solid percussion and whooshing pads give way to a peak time techno workout, with synth stabs and stuttering chatter exciting the eardrums for the penultimate track on the album.

We finish on a high, and our EXCLUSIVE PREMIERE, with a final nod to the Motor City presented in The Future Then (Live). Gorgeous arpeggiating synthesis is married together with a repeated vocal refrain – “Future” –  that receives treatment throughout, and the final third of the track sends us off with the hairs on the nape of our neck stood to attention and excited serotonin-loaded shivers coursing through the body. An excellent album closer if ever there was one.

You can pre-order Saytek – Improvisations here, and you can buy the album through the same link on Friday 23rd. In the meantime, enjoy our premiere of the final track on the album; The Future Then (Live).

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Author: Ste Knight

Editor at The Waveform Transmitter. Lover of acid basslines, cavernous kick drums, and dark rooms. Cut his teeth to Surgeon's blistering techno assault at T-Funkshun in Liverpool and hasn't stopped for breath since.

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