Review: Michael Melchner – π Came First – Colt Music
Michael Melchner is back in business with his π Came First EP for Madrid’s very own Colt Music label. After several releases on labels like Concealed Sounds, Paragram, DoEasy, Love Letters From Oslo and many more, Michael once again shows us his idea of minimalistic house and techno that clearly relies on simple structures and a driving groove to keep dancers and clubgoers over the world in motion. For the third release by Colt Music he sticks to his strengths and offers a nicely done thee track EP. He joins the label after records from Hamid and a re-release by Brian Harden which also offered minimalistic and grooving tracks to the young label’s catalogue.
The opening is handled by the title track „π Came First“. A wooden kick drum and a nicely filtered and shuffled bassline serves as a solid foundation with sharp drums and a sloppy clap on top. The melancholic pad that softly slides into the arrangement regularly is the stand out sound of this tune, generating an odd feeling. Dreamy bells as a nice variation that somehow remind of church services are supported by an unexcited conversation used to fill up the track and spice things up a bit. In general this track isn’t a hard hitting four to the floor track, it’s a weird and playful one that plays with short breakdowns that are introduced by shuffling drum segments. It’s this unorthodox way of arrangement that make this track stand out of other minimalistic tunes these days, this almost experimental attempt is hard to find in the minimal scene and therefore very special. „π Came Second“ keeps things going and opens up the b-side. A hypnotic string floats through the back in a calm way. The bass-drums are stomping and have more drive which functions great in the break-beat’ish arranged kick section. The drum parts overall are very agile and once again have shuffled parts that make the track more exciting. The nicely filtered vocal comes straight from the bottom and sounds like it makes its way from the ocean abyss to the surface. The breaks clearly stand out in this track since they are quite different to what we are used to. No kick and a lot of drum programming and tuning in those areas treat your ear. This leads to a nice mix between the hypnotic basis and the heavy shifting drum sounds. This minimalistic and bouncing attempt translates in great fashion, placing you in a nice dream and waking you up in between to make sure you’re still hooked on the groove. „Prague“ closes the EP with a powerful kick drum and an extremely deep bassline. The drums are a bit louder on this one which is a nice contrast to the energetic lower frequencies. Drum rolls and delayed clap parts take over and meld with the industrial sounds and strings that are introduced throughout the 6minutes lasting journey. The whole „π Came First“ EP adds a small new facet to Michael Melchner’s repertoire with the stumbling arrangement and heavy use of shuffled parts. The sounds are a bit more industrial than normally and also have a certain uniqueness. Still sticking to the groove and his minimalistic taste, he really experimented with new ideas and tried something new that led to three very enjoyable tracks that are definitely different from the rest of his catalogue.