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SUOL head honchos Chopstick & Johnjon have gone back to basics with their latest offering. The four original tracks on their Momentum EP are the result of some extensive studio jam sessions – getting deep into the grooves, tweaking all the sounds live and later distilling the best bits from the recordings while hardly making any changes. The idea behind this spontaneous approach to the production process was to achieve a rougher, dirtier sound that captures the freshness of a live jam. Featured vocalist CeCe Rogers asks “What Is House Music” on the EP’s opening track.
Maybe it is exactly that grittiness of the looping drum machine, the shuffling snares, crisp claps and relentless kicks, the filtered stabs with swirling delay feedback. Warm analogue pads take us into “Salvation”. On top of a classic TR groove, gleaming arpeggios and a sweet vocal float blissfully over the heavy bass of the toms before a little synth melodies echoes away into infinity. The low tom takes charge once more at the beginning of “O-Negative”, which is centred around a big analogue lead sound that morphs and modulates while short, snappy snares add urgency. Glitchy feedbacks try to veer off the track but the rhythm is kept tight as the energy level rises before we are left with a dreamy comedown part after the peak.
We wrap things up with “Catalisa”, which adds a layer of disco funk to the synth jam with its bass guitar sample and organ stabs that dance around a filtered vocal sample in the background. Playful machine percussion takes us to the end of the EP that proves you don’t need many elements to make great house tracks if you know what you are doing – Chopstick & Johnjon certainly do.