Bulgarian producer extraordinaire Strahil Velchev aka KiNK staying true to nature has released yet another triad of dance-floor burners with the release of ‘Chorus EP’ on the versatile Singapore based Midnight Shift imprint.
Straight off the bat , the title track ‘chorus’ greets us with a graceful intertwine between a sh-101 bassline and a stab reminiscent of a 90s deep house tune . As the track builds and the filter opens up; the crunchy-stab explodes into euphoric goodness complete with raw saw-tooth motifs. It is prudent to point out that KiNK manages to keep the listener intrigued without the presence of a prominent breakdown. The only one being filled in by his typical snare roll build up that leads into a smashing percussive bassline that’s going to get the sweat dripping off any dance floor.
Here’s a quote from the man himself on how this track came about as mentioned to the Bandwagon crew
‘Chorus’ is a track that came along out of testing hardware units. I bought a guitar pedal which was called Stereo Chorus Flanger, and I was just testing the sound and running some synthesizers through it. I found this nice melody, I pressed record… and that’s how the track came about!
The second offering on the Singaporean imprint begins will a dull and drone-like pad , a deceiving precursor to what follows next. As a dusty kick comes in along with the usual claps and hi-hats the track reveals its true nature. An acid-laced, eerily dark and melancholic slider takes shape. The track squelches, squeals and winds it’s way into trippy obscurity as KiNK strips this track down to the bare bones. The drums aren’t fussy are and good enough to keep you hooked onto the track. In fact it compliments the omnipresent acid , which to me sounds like it’s picked up from one of his many 303 – clones. As we progress further into the predictive unknown , warm-ghostly chords chime in and rapture with dissonant simplicity rounding off another excellent piece of music from the Bulgarian maestro.
The second track I did with my friend, an artist named KEi. He’s my long-time collaborator, he showed me how to make music about 19 years ago. And in recent times we started to make music together – so this is our first result after many years of friendship. We’ve been listening to an artist called Madame X for inspiration, she used to be an artist active in the 80s’, and sounds very Prince in a way. So we named a track after her because that’s what we were getting inspired by. Via Bandwagon.sg
The last track on the EP is another belter as it greets us with a delicious breaks – inspired kick drum with generous analog saturation to give it a touch of nostalgia. As you listen, the track grows onto you like the beginning of a great story. A lush-emotive pad swoops in enveloping the higher frequency spectrums. Suddenly you are shot-back in time to when detroit-electro was sending ravers into a tizzy. The track meanders into a gloriously blissful journey. Until two minutes in.
KiNK tears the track apart to pieces but retains the key elements with audacious ease. The baseline erupts as a vicious , unforgiving saw-tooth lead rips the heart out of the peace that once was. Paying tribute to the 1983 classic, Cybotron – Clear , there is no questioning this man’s roots. Throughout the experience , KiNK demonstrates the prowess of his production capabilities with arrogant impetus as he draws the listener in and out of contrasting vibes like dipping elegant green tea bags into hot-water.
The third one is called ‘Emotional Breakdown’. Again I was testing different instruments and they inspired me to go this way musically. Track is more break-y, and because of the uneven shape of the beat, I also wanted to have the word “break” in the name of the track. I found it interesting to name it ‘Emotional Breakdown’ also because of this emotional night with synthesizers playing with sax. Via Bandwagon.sg
BONUS LOOPS ( VINYL ONLY)
KiNK also has a surprise in store for all vinyl aficionados, offering four original loops that are distinct from the entire EP. The electro-inspired loops are designed to be used as tools and can be layered over a variety of sounds. Glitchy, off-beat and tastefully construed , the serious DJ can certainly find space for dropping any of these in their sets.
I closed the record with a couple of loops I produced. It’s something I started since about two years ago, because I play most live shows nowadays, and I decided also that I wanted to use records as an instrument in my live sets. So for two years, every record I do, I ask the label to add those infinite grooves which I can use during a show. And hopefully, other creative DJs can also do that. Via Bandwagon.sg
Cat: MNSW 004
Released: 15 Sep 16
Genre: Minimal/Tech House
Buy the EP via Juno
An avid lover of electronic music since 2008 , A content contributer at Border Movement blog & one half of Twokid Wickid and my two cents on music culture in India.