Nathan Drew Larsen: Prairie Path Frustration

Nathan Drew Larsen's ferocious comeback on Fresh Meat Records, with Tevo Howard and Audio Soul Project remixes.

I spent every summer holiday between 1985 and 1992 on the Illinois Prairie Path, a trail built over old railroad tracks that winds through the Chicago suburbs. Used mostly by cyclers, it takes you through some green stretches but also the geology of a more modern, much uglier terrain: of old factories repurposed as apartments, warehouses without anything to store, dead malls and the fringes of downtowns abandoned of everything but blackened bricks and labelscars.

There’s a hum to the title track of Nathan Drew Larsen’s first solo release in five years, evocative of a motor or an idling rage. Layered over the top are bells, vocal clips, even birdsong. You can assume a lot based upon this: an inner turmoil up against the outside world, perhaps one influencing the other as they spill over.

The second track on the EP features remixes by Tevo Howard and Audio Soul Project. Tevo’s take on “Left There” is simply brilliant: scratchy Italo or Krautrock played back through Blake Baxter’s boom box. Electronic music rarely manages to succeed beyond dance into “storytelling”; both Tevo and ASP’s edits of “Left There” do.

Available in Chicago at Gramaphone, internationally at Juno


Published first in 5 Mag Issue #130, featuring Kerri Chandler, Dance Mania, Spiritchaser, Fatback, Edward Fields and more. Become a member of 5 Magazine for First & Full access to everything House Music and save 60%!