Essential is a word we try to refrain from flippantly banding around this site. After all, a term with such weight should be reserved for releases that undoubtedly deserve them, such as Bicep’s forthcoming You/Don’t EP.
The Irish duo have had a sublime run of late, with recent releases on Love Parade, Throne of Blood and Under The Shade not only proving them a versatile and productive act, but also a pairing that have a refreshingly playful, pseudo-tongue-in-cheek approach to music, something that is also abundantly clear on their blog.
“Whilst moving forward is essential in music, looking back is equally important” say Bicep of their excellent recent ‘Muscle Worx Mixtape‘ for Fader magazine, a theme which continues through this EP. Both You and Don’t Do It manage to sound simultaneously current and classic, stripped-back and full, familiar and challenging; a feat that not only creates a fantastic record, but makes it a uniquely Bicep one.
You, produced in collaboration with fellow Northern Irishman Ejeca sounds like an homage to a 90s warehouse rave. The vocal sample sounds like it was nicked straight out of 808 State’s record bag, cut up to infinity and forced to play with some MIDI strings and familiar percussive samples. The result is a track begging for main room attention, and one that still feels overwhelmingly danceable despite moving with a sense of reserved euphoria for its duration – perfect end of night ammunition.
Don’t Do It sees the duo team up with the excellent Serge Santiago under his Waze & Odyssey guise Omar Odyssey. Joining laid back hat shuffles, lush pads, and a bruising bassline, it’s difficult to imagine circles in which this cut would not be received with the appraisal it deserves.
The release represents a continuation of sterling form both for the Bicep boys and Will Saul’s ever-fruitful Aus label. With friends and residencies in all the right places, superb production credentials and a wicked sense of humour, Bicep look set for the huge success they rightly deserve.
Bicep – You / Dont (Aus Music) drops July 16th