At its best when whipcrack snare madness takes hold

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Machinedrum - 'Vapor City'

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Machinedrum – ‘Vapor City’

Berlin-based American electronic bod Travis Stewart caused an agreeable kerfuffle with his ‘Room(s)’ album two years ago, when his embracing of Chicago footwork was deemed an individual, if inauthentic spin on the style. Its successor retains a zeal for fiddly, intricate beats, but recalibrates them: at times, the airy vibe sails close to late-’90s drum’n’bass (‘Gunshotta’, ‘Eyesdontlie’). An overly soft mid-section (‘Center Your Love’, ‘Vizion’) reveals that chillout-esque pleasantness isn’t Stewart’s forte, but that’s not to say this album’s only good when the whipcrack snare madness takes hold. ‘U Still Lie’, foggy and inert ambient house, is proof of that.

Noel Gardner

Details

Record label:Ninja Tune
Release date:23 Sep, 2013