Robert Babicz needs no introduction, and he’s back on the increasingly excellent Selador with a four track EP, following up ‘Rosegarden’ from October of last year.
The title track is both chunky and astoundingly lovely, with glacial washes and reverberating stabs setting the mood early on, before the killer bassline is unleashed. It’s the interaction between the bassline and the subtle, trance-like lead melody that really makes the track, and when the gentle strings and chiming countermelodies join in, it’s as emotional as it is groovy. Whatever one thinks of the optimism expressed in the title, it’s clear that Robert Babicz is going to be responsible for making a lot of people happy with this one – gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous.
‘Massive’ sees Robert Babicz channeling his Rob Acid alter-ego, living up to the title from the off with a powerful 303 bassline that provides the foundation for the carefully orchestrated chaos that follows. The track hits full-tilt after minute and a half, assailing the listener with acidic licks, and somehow managing to up the intensity levels even further after the breakdown. There’s no questioning Robert Babicz’s utterly mastery of this sound, and this is a prime example.
The third track, ‘Turn Around My Friend’, plays up garage influences, with breakbeats fluttering behind the heavy four-to-the-floor kicks, and boasting the most brutal bassline since King Unique’s teeth-rattling remix of Jamie Stevens’s ‘Tribe of the Disco Kings’ (and it’s no surprise to find that King Unique’s been a huge supporter of this one). A simple, eerie melody keeps the track progressing, but really, all the action is below deck on this one.
Finally, ‘Tonefabrik’ returns us to the beautiful future-house sound of the first track, with a bustling, groovy bassline and crisp percussion leading the way, topped with an understated but gripping theme, busy plucked motifs, and blissfully aquatic melodies that lift the track around the breakdowns. I defy you not to fall head over heels for this one.
Even coming from a veteran like Robert Babicz, this is an astonishingly confident, accomplished, and well-rounded EP, with the two harder cuts complementing the two melodic beauties perfectly. This is probably Selador’s finest release so far, and it’s one of the strongest packages of 2014 so far. 9/10