Vapor City Archives
Last year’s Vapor City LP kicked off a year of Machinedrum projects centred around similar musical and conceptual themes, including EPs, an interactive website, a tour and free downloads. Vapor City Archives brings the series to a close, and despite the impression the title gives, this is a proper album – not a collection of B-sides and outtakes. Building on the connections between slow hip-hop rhythms and double-time footwork beats, Archives is a further exploration of some of its predecessor’s roughly sketched-out ideas.
The drum ’n’ bass influence is more explicit on much of this newer material, even when the busy rolling snares are switched for the frenetic bass drums of footwork breaks. At the same time, the synth-pad washes, acoustic pianos and guitars and vocal snippets are more upfront, putting more emphasis on the melodic elements. These are all relatively subtle shifts, but anyone who was excited by the previous instalments should appreciate this just as much.
Top track: Hard 2 Be