Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Pearson Sound - 'Blanked/Blue Eyes' (HES016)

Quality control once again proves to remain high on Hessle Audio releases, and was it ever in doubt with the knowledge that the prolific David Kennedy (aka Ramadanman, Pearson Sound) was producing release 016? Not for one minute. 2010 has been an outstanding year for the young producer/DJ, who seems to progress with each release, keeping standards high whilst experimenting with styles. Already to his name this year is the 'Ramadanman' EP, 'Your Words Matter/More Than You Know' (Midland), 'Down With You/Higher', 'Glut/Tempest' as well as the killer juke influenced 'Work Them/Fall Short'. Now under the alias of Pearson Sound, the first time he has worked under this name since 'Down With You', comes the release of 'Blanked/Blue Eyes' on the ever transcendent Hessle Audio. This release seems to combine elements of both his work as Ramadanman and Pearson Sound, combing similar sounds to what has gone before in 'Work Them' and 'Glut' as well as 'Gambetta'.

'Blanked' is the track which has been making the most noise, finding itself in the hands of the taste makers weeks/months before its release (Ben UFO, Oneman, J.O. and Blawan have all been strong supporters of the track). 7 minutes 13 seconds long, 'Blanked' slowly builds, patiently building a wonderfully worked break beat created on 808's that recalls breaks from the old school days of early 90s drum & bass/jungle. It's a resolute stripped back beat that forms the basis of the track, which after 1 minute is accompanied brilliantly by an Untold style reverberating bass kick. Progressing under this format, male vocals slowly work their way into the foreground of the track as do the every swarming synthlines that work in tandem with the aforementioned vocals, eventually drowning out the delicately built percussion. This adds a weight of emotional intensity to 'Blanked', a darkness in tone yet beauty in the way on which the male vocals and vox'd female wails interplay. This has become a marker of Kennedy's work over the past few years, excellently crafted tracks designed for the dancefloor that still evoke certain feelings and emotions. The break beat is re-introduced after the 4 minute mark, a move marked by a surging bass kick to kick the track back into a mode of progression. Vocals slowly fade away into the distance, breaks moving the feet of those that care.

'Blue Eyes' is equally adept to the A-side, and although it builds similarly to its partner, the style is slightly different and more playful in my opinion. A wonderfully laid out 808 percussive beat is set up early on, almost like a slowed down juke beat, a genre which has left its a mark on the work of recent producers including Kennedy himself ('Work Them/Fall Short' as well as previous and future Addison Groove material). The creation of such percussion dominates the opening, with the track finally kicking into life on the minute mark, signalled once again by an enormous Untold-esque bass kick which thumps to say the least. Playful synth arrangements (almost sounding as if they are produced from a type of game console) and beautifully soul drenched female vocals provide a nice foil to the more rigid percussion, slowly encapsulating the foreground of the track whilst the rolling percussion is pushed into the shadows, but only briefly. The bass kick once again asserts it's authority, reclaiming dominance whilst the vocals still float tentatively in the background, giving that soulful edge to a stripped down beat and heavy bass.

You can preview/purchase 'Blanked/Blue Eyes' now by clicking here. It's a big 12" release, one not to miss. Pearson Sound x Hessle Audio. A combination that was only going to produce high quality.

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