MOONSTARR with DJs ROSINA, ASHWIN TUMNE and FRANKY GUNNS at Area 51 (577 King West), Friday (March 2). $10-$15. 416-410-3475. Rating: NNNNN
Since his intriguing debut 10-inch single, Hexed, appeared in 1997, there's been talk of the drawers-ful of beats transit-riding downtown producer Moonstarr was sitting on.When would a full-length record come out? What was the bloody delay?
Moonstarr makes no excuses for taking more than three years to come up with the follow-up to Hexed. The tracks were ready, he admits, but other stuff came first.
The producer founded the independent electro imprint Public Transit Recordings, which released the deep Asian grooves of LAL as well as a couple of transit-themed compilations of local producers and DJs. Eventually, Moonstarr's record got bumped off his own label's release schedule.
"My album was supposed to drop last summer, and then we got wrapped up in the label," he laughs. "LAL was a big thing for us, and we really wanted to concentrate on letting as many people as possible hear that record. It's all about artist development for us, but unfortunately, that takes time."
Luckily, Dupont was worth the wait. The six-song record is split between old and new material, with a series of voice-mail interludes breaking things up. Three year-old tracks like Dust, an infectious blast of bossa cut-ups and stuttered drum programming, feature huge, jazzy loops, while the newer cuts lean more on the side of pared-down techno.
A full-length album is scheduled for this summer, but we've heard that before.
"I just wanted to get over some of the older stuff," Moon explains. "You can't keep sitting on it for years, and I had a specific idea about what I wanted this record to be about, and they fit. There's a lot of instrumental hiphop and breakbeat stuff, and that's the vibe that I get when I'm on Dupont.
"The new stuff still has the big loops and gritty sound. I haven't lost touch with the roots, but it's developing, too. I've got lots left over. There's some hiphop stuff I'm sleeping on as well as some other surprises. You won't have to wait this long again, though. I promise."