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LISTEN TO: BYETONE

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Pulsing, driving minimal electronic music veering from techno flavor to more distorted droning riffage. BYETONE came out with its third record SYMETA at the tail end of 2011, and had I heard it earlier it may have my made my best of year end list. Real, nasty groove is the basis of Olaf Bender’s music, and he has a serious rollercoaster of a way with making the most out of his grooves. Rarely have I ever heard a track so funky and menacing at the same time as “Golden Elegy”. Throughout sinister synths ooze over a hip hop beat while the pulsing sounds of an alien landing fill the rest of the music’s space. The track, and album ends with a recitation of something spoken in German. Earlier in the album you find “Opal”, just under 7 minutes of slow build, slow build, gaining steam electronic hypnosis that immediately evaporates after reaching its apex. “Black Peace” begins with full on buzzing synths. The bass drums are blasting from the outset, but that quickly morphs into a new wave beat while the synths stay their course. The beat drops, letting the synth action take hold for a moment, only to come back with a more muscular drum beat that is swarmed by droning, and swirling synths creating a most amazing and intoxicating wall of sound that holds court until song’s end. Really amazing stuff, I can’t count the number of times I’ve listened to this. Powerful, groove laden music. Out on RASTER-NOTON.

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