Wednesday, June 10, 2009
Warning: This post takes a step backwards.
Today BT released his first musical work since the eclectic and ambient This Binary Universe(2006). The track - available "exclusively" at Beatport.com and only to US customers - is entitled Rose of Jericho, and currently has 3 mixes (the album mix and 2 remixes) out, with another 3 to come in 2 weeks time.
Three years after BT decided to tread a different path with TBU - a beautiful album, but entirely bereft of "club music" - he's brought himself back somewhat to his prog-house/trance days, in the vein of Godspeed or Namaste from Movement in Still Life(1999). Words like "eagerly awaited" spring to mind - Movement was an amazing album (still is, 10 years on), and while the successive Emotional Technology (2003) and TBU are masterpieces in their own right, fans have been wondering when the man might come back and make something that will blow them away on the dancefloor. I am one of those fans.
Picking up Movement in 2001, purely because I'd seen the cover so many times at Real Groovy that I became too curious, I'd have to say BT put me firmly on the train towards being the electronica fan I am today. His attention to detail in the sound, beautiful synth and vocals over more than a simple house beat, mixed in with breaks and flourishes that no-one like Sash! or Paul Van Dyke could pull off, I was thoroughly smitten. Seeing him live in Auckland twice at God's Kitchen and Two Tribes, he easily outshone "bigger name" DJs like Mauro Picotto, Above & Beyond & Tomcraft) with both sets, mostly with superior track choice and energy. Let's face it, the guy's a hero of mine. And he doesn't sing too shabbily either.
Spot the fanboy
Listening to Rose Of Jericho today though, I'm yet to be impressed by it. Sure, it's a decent track, but hardly as memorable as I expect from the man. The beat reeks of Tiesto & Van Dyke, which I guess the Cali crowd lap up (judging by how packed Tiesto was on NYE 07/08 in LA). The synth is tight, but it's minimal, progressive, and fairly easily forgotten. No vocal, no drop, no breaks. It could have been written by any generic house name. Especially Du Monde, or Deadmau5 on an unproductive day.
Maybe I've moved on, or maybe he has. But I swear I still hold a special place in my heart for BT's exceptional work - I'm just not quite sure this qualifies.
Album will be out near the end of the year, which may be a totally different kettle of fish. For now, I'm going to go listen to Hybrid to fill the void.
Edit: Checking a few clips kicking around of stuff he's working on for the album, they did sound better. Here's hoping!