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E-Spectro & Hells Kitchen – Agora (Blendwerk)

Blendwerk has been one of the more interesting labels to pop up this year. E-Spectro and Hells Kitchen have done an amazing job with the A&R and branding of the imprint. The artwork is really unique and you can tell each release is meticulously planned and thought out. The labels fourth release is out this week and without question it’s their biggest offering to date. The label bosses deliver their first EP for the label entitled ‘Agora’ which comes with remixes from Logiztik Sounds, Mehmet Akar and Teho.

The title cut finds E-Spectro and Hells Kitchen at their very best. it’s certainly one of the most haunting melodic techno tracks we’ve heard this year. The titanium coated beats have been processed to shimmering perfection while the trippy, aquatic electronics go through a wide spectrum of twists and turns that are incredibly captivating. The low slung grinding groove has a cool nasally quality about it and will certainly sound immense on a club system. The twisted conclusion of warped hooks is intense but no so over the top that you wish it would stop; quite the opposite actually. It’s a beautiful wall of harmonic noise that’s been carved to perfection by E-Spectro and Hells Kitchen.

The first remix is supplied by Logiztik Sounds who has really risen back to the forefront of cutting edge electronic music this year. His outings on Traum, Manual and Inlab have all been spectacular and he closes the year off with a great remix here. His ‘Agora’ interpretation offers a more stripped down and punishing approach to the piece. The deliberate sounding beats have a lot of drive and the grinding lead line has been twisted to sonic perfection. Certainly a better fit for the dance floor and it’s one that Logiztik Sounds has been showcasing in his sets since this summer.

The second and final remix of ‘Agora’ comes from another one of this year’s most talked about producers Mehmet Akar. The Turkish producer has really delivered something special here. Currently sitting at #2 in our overall Hype Chart Mehmet has reworked the twisted themes from the original into something that is breathtakingly beautiful. Smooth harmonics give the production an effortless glide that only comes from a true studio veteran like Mehmet and the well processed keys seem to have the perfect amount of glisten for that extra special quality.

The second original on the release in entitled ‘Trugbild’ and it comes with the same great qualities that ‘Agora’ does. Actually it’s almost like ‘Agora’s’ little brother. The clusters of mallet-like keys are completely mesmerizing and the shuffling drums really make the groove that much more dance floor worthy. There are times where melodic techno seems to be completely dead but when it’s done this well it’s lifespan seems to have a much brighter outlook.

The lone remix of ‘Trugbild’ and the EPs final track comes from Teho who is making his first appearance on Blendwerk. The French producer has added some nice entries into his discography this year with outings on Parquet, MNL and Grrreat Recordings. Teho’s ‘Trugbild’ interpretation seems like the ideal piece to close the release off. The elements from the original are well represented here but in a smoother, gentler way if you will and it leaves you with a warm satisfying feeling overall. Great release from Blendwerk, looking forward to seeing where they take things in 2014.

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