This was slipped under the transom just before we hit deadline day. We’re still cleaning up from it. NCW (aka Nick Wilson) drops an EP with rare explosive force on Apartment Records. NCW on NCW is bursting with energy, animated by a creativity that is virtually unrestrained by any consideration other than what will fit on half a slab of vinyl. You can call that “leftfield” and by the standards of the time it probably is. Increasingly I’m finding what’s listed as “leftfield techno” as embodying everything that I originally liked about techno — experimentation, futurism, a feeling of communion or a silent solidarity. Everyone used to make techno records this way, and those worth listening to still do.
NCW on NCW rolls out with “Cluffy’s Dream,” with trance-like chords racing over a metronomic stomp. The middle two tracks are where the sweet meat is at. “Shut Up Dennis” is, simply put, the best techno track released this month, pulsating with soul and one of the most energetic dancefloor workouts you’ll find. From driving subterranean techno on “Dennis” to the atmospheric “LILT4Kenzo” is a wild ride from one side of the disc to the next. Even at their most pretty — and in parts this is achingly beautiful — NCW’s tracks have a grime to them, a love of lofi distortion and thrill at seeing what monsters come out when you bury a needle in the red.
NCW: NCW on NCW (Apartment Records / June 2021 / 12″ Vinyl)
1. NCW: Cluffy’s Dream (07:48)
2. NCW: Shut Up Dennis (07:19)
3. NCW: Lilt4Kenzo (06:27)
4. NCW: Silkworm Rising (06:12)
⚪️ Disclosure Statement: This record was submitted as a promo by the label.