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Artist: Jamaica Suk
Title: Dreams Of A Distant Journey
Format: 12" Vinyl
Release date: July 12, 2019
A1. Jamaica Suk - Dreams Of A Distant Journey (Inland Remix)
A2. Jamaica Suk - Road Between (Original Mix)
B1. Jamaica Suk - Dreams Of A Distant Journey (Juho Kusti Remix)
B2. Jamaica Suk - Dreams Of A Distant Journey (Original Mix)
Jamaica Suk returns with the third release on her quality-not-quantity imprint Gradient, with two fine originals matched by two excellent remixes.
‘Dreams Of A Distant Journey’ is an expansive soundscape of brooding, time-stretched, distorted synths which growl and morph around a heady, delayed chime motif. Ambient in structure but more brutalist in texture, its hazy feel is exacerbated by off-kilter percussive touches whose looseness add an element of free form jazz into the mix. It’s a beast of a composition that’s fit for a sci-fi film or a mesmerising live show all the same.
‘Road Between’ is Jamaica Suk in club mode, with pummelling bass arpeggios and discordant metallic percussive rhythms firing in all directions. Subtle variations give character as cymbal hits cut in and out and reverbs push sounds further into the distance. With the bass line channelling classic Electro and Techno and the sound palette very much modern-day techno, it’s a potent blend.
The title track gets two excellent remixes. Inland has made his mark on both Ostgut Ton and Boiler Room, and it’s not hard to see why with his pummelling work out. Hard machine funk underpins his version with frantic bleeps pulse away under shuffling shakers and intense cymbal rides, with a thick undercurrent of rubbery bass at the heart of the matter.
Finnish master and Deep Space Helsinki man Juho Kusti provides the other remix, giving a deeper and more gentle interpretation that makes good use of the chimes over a sputtering beat. The brief breakdown gives a bigger nod to the original, and opens the door for those magnificent textures to glide over his succinct but powerful rhythms.
Side note: the title of the EP is steeped in Jamaica Suk’s family history. It was originally the name of a track by Southroad Connection, the 1970s funk band that her relative Paul McKnight performed and composed with.
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