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Illusions of Power is about political corruption, the collapse and seizure of control, sparring nations, war, drugs, gangs and the fraudulent, media systems that spin it all into rolling, fear-mongering 24 hour loops. Illusions of Power is about the horrors of the modern world and a humanity haunted by its bloodied past. But as every long dark tunnel comes to an end, Illusions of Power too has its glimmers of hope.
Written with an arsenal of hardware gear from the Londoner’s studio in Berlin, Dax J’s Electric Deluxe debut is a militant, yet atmospherical dancefloor assault. As he has proven over a slew of EPs for EarToGround Records and labels like LDNWHT, Deeply Rooted, Clergy and his own Monnom Black label, his sound is a compelling and thoroughly contemporary one. Dax J’s productions are typically mercurial, informed by the past and fortified with a wide range of influences from acid and ambient, to jungle and drum & bass. His EPs are rich, kaleidoscopic ventures involving an array of tempos and moods, and Illusions of Power is no different.
In “Reign Of Terror” and “Harry The Hatchet” on the A-side, and “Zulu Nation” and “The Quest” on the flip, Dax J flexes sinewy techno muscle in his rave-inciting idiom where the new and the oldschool collide. Then in the angst-ridden “Cartagena Square” (built around field recordings from Cartagena in South America) and dreamy breakbeats of “Breaking Visions” Illusions of Power present two very different diversions from the dance. In one there is light and a sense of relief; in the other, shadowy omens of the world are massing. The future is full of promise, but be on your guard.
Dax J - Illusion Of Power, Released 2016-09-16, Electric Deluxe, EDLX051
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Five years and over 30 releases later Speedy J’s Electric Deluxe is as vibrant and forward-thinking as ever. From humble beginnings the boutique label has blossomed into a first-class station for electronic music that’s both functional and thought provoking. It has become the home for established and emerging artists alike to experiment beyond their usual parameters, a testing ground for new projects, and a platform for innovative methods in the production, consumption and packaging of modern dance music.
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