Friday, 14 May 2010


2009 was the making of FaltyDL. Drew Lustman, a 26 year old producer/DJ from New York, had unprecedented success last year with numerous releases on the established Ramp Recordings and Planet Mu labels showcasing his unique mixing of 2-step, garage, soul and house within his work. Comparisons have been made with artists such as Martyn, Burial and Dorian Concept.

Lustman's greatest influence in music is the UK jungle and garage scene, something which is absent in his home city of New York. These influence have a clear presence in his work, with his signature sound of 2-step infused productions, with a penchant for chopped up and looped vocals as well as rich melodic textures within tracks. His work also touches on the new glitch-hop scene, with an influence of US hip-hop taking effect on areas of his work. He defines his sound as 'New York Garage', an apt description for his sampling of UK bass music and US hip-hop and jazz. When not making beats, Lustman is a part-time supervise teacher, wish I had teachers who made great electronic music...

FaltyDL's first major release came in June 2009 on the Ramp label in the form of the EP 'To London'. The three track EP, which includes 'To London', 'Meta-Cognist' and 'Tom@Ramp', displays FaltyDL's brand of garage/dubstep beats and sounds accompanied by soulful vocals. The lead track, 'To London', is the best example of this, with a jittery beat laying the foundations for emotive chopped-up male and female vocals.

The 'To London' EP was released just one week before FaltyDL unveiled his debut LP 'Love Is A Liability' on the Planet Mu label. The LP is brilliant, with Lustman managing to create his own world with varying mixes of hip-hop, dubstep, soul and electronica ranging throughout the album. The first track, 'Human Meadow' is without doubt one of the highlights of the album, a track which received a lot of attention from the first lady of dubstep Mary Anne Hobbs due to its innovative “ ambiance, round, warm melodies and skippy 2-step beats”. The track was so popular it has also had an EP dedicated to it with remixes provided by names such as Boxcutter and Luke Vibet. The track 'To New York' is the most explicitly dubstep influenced track, with a warbling bassline and varying synths accompanied by a distorted looped vocal which begins halfway through the track. The range of tracks is highlighted by more downtempo numbers also, with 'The Shape To Come' and 'Truth' offering another dimension to the albums plethora of sounds.

'Love Is A Liability' Tracklist:

1. Human Meadow
2. Dionysos
3. Encompass
4. Winter Sole
5. To New York
6. The Shape To Come
7. Our Loss
8. Truth
9. Enuia
10. Anxiety
11. Pink On The Inside
12. Paradise Lost
13. The Shape Has Come
Lustman's third release came on the Planet Mu label in October 2009 with the 'Bravery' EP, which I think is his finest work to date, a real example of IDM (intelligent dance music). This EP is so hard to pin down, with tracks taking a number of different influences, but still somehow managing to coherently fit alongside one another. The opening track 'Made Me Feel So Right' is almost an ode to UK garage with the disorientating beat of the drums and snippets of emotive female vocals coming in and out of the track. However the EP from here on plays through a number of genres, ranging from dubstep, hip-hop, soul, electronica and even elements of disco. My favourite track on the EP, 'Mother Beam', almost verges on the glitch-hop, with dubstep beats, layers of synths and soulful female vocals, accompanied by calls of "it ain't hard" from Nas at varying points on the track (a sample from Nas' 'It Ain't Hard To Tell'). The tracklist for the EP can be seen in the picture below.

One week after the release of 'Bravery', FaltyDL released the single 'Party' on the Ramp label, backed with the track 'Alpafun'. This release established a signature sound that runs throughout much of his material, with a bass heavy 2-step beat accompanied by chopped up soulful vocals melodically singing 'Party' and rhythmic percussion adding another layer to this great track.
FaltyDL's most recent material comes in the form of the excellent 'All In The Place' EP, featuring the tracks 'All In The Place', 'St. Marks', 'Discoko' and 'Groove', released in March on the Rush Hour label. The EP follows a signature style, crossbreeding dubstep, garage and funk into what is a classic yet futuristic bass sound. It most resembles his work on the 'To London' EP, and is a really great listen which I would recommend to all fans of experimental electronic music. For more information on FaltyDL visit his myspace page which is

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