Cutoffrkss

Cutoff

The label name ‘Alien Jams’ has never felt more fitting than for it’s latest release, rkss’ ‘Cutoff’ EP. Making up the fifth in the catalogue on Chloe Frieda’s radio station-come-record label, the 12” takes you on a cosmic voyage, floating past distant planets with a child-like awe at the unknown.

For previous releases, the London-based Robin Buckley has taken a rather conceptual approach. Their ‘Tunnel’ EP experimented with sampling randomly generated YouTube videos, while the Where To Now? released Top Charted abstracted well-worn EDM presets to create an experience like visiting Coachella on a heavy dose of LSD.

In comparison, ‘Cutoff’ sounds like Buckley just having fun. The title track explores Night Slugs reminiscent percussive madness, cranky 4/4 thudding into oblivion. Box room reverbs and squealing modulations give the piece an invasive closeness, cracking snares and blunt kicks bouncing off the walls brazenly.

Other tracks find themselves in a state of delirium. ‘Wave’ sets intoxicating ripples of synthesiser against a bubbling soup of spring reverbs and tape echoes, discordant bleeps occupying the backdrop like a time-machine in a 1970’s sci-fi flick. ‘Load’ on the other hand could easily find its place in a DJ Sotofett or Madteo mix, idle-minded basslines powering through windy layers of background ambience.

Having been a follower of Buckley’s work since their early releases, it is satisfying to see where their journey has taken them. As mentioned, the last few releases have seen Buckley move in a perhaps more conceptual direction, so in many ways ‘Cutoff’ feels like a return to his early ‘Basement’ and ‘Submerged’ EPs, but with refined purpose and sensibilities.

  • Published
  • Nov 03, 2016