Remember Through Motion? Perhaps Midlands first break through release, well that was back in 2011 and unlike many electronic releases it still hasnt lots its original deep yet anthemic sheen. Through Motion had an emotional grit to it that hinted at something painful in Harry aka Midlands life at that time with the line ‘you start to believe your own lies’. Since then Midland has not always remained in this deeper territory, toying with the UK Bass Techno type sound on occasion, however he seems to be at his most evocative when drawing on those deeper recesses of thought, take the Placement EP. However we often felt that Midland didnt quite get the acclamation he deserved, perhaps because his more emotional pieces were too light for the dancefloor and his tougher music too devoid of depth. As to whether this is true is a matter of opinion, however it is apparent that his latest releases ‘Trace‘ and the current record ‘Archive01 / Real Time’ appear to address this issue, combining incisive main room credentials with a pleasing amount of depth.
Lead track ‘Archive01’ is the brash younger brother who is attempting to upstage his older more considered sibling ‘Real Time’. Like any young upstart Archive01 quickly lets you know what he’s all about, in this case, the dance floor. Almost tribal in composition Archive01 sounds as though Midland has trapped a native Australian in his studio, given him a drum machine and swapping his didgeridoo for a synth, whilst in the background he fattens up the beats and layers in some of his now customary depth. Real Time on first take is certainly the more considered listen, however dont be fooled, its subtly doesnt make it any less of a dancefloor beast. Largely built around two very short vocal snippets and a single note synth line Midland layers in additional sounds, creating a gentle crescendo that almost looses itself in a cacophony of ideas, before stripping itself right back and continuing its pilgrimage towards dance floor immortality, well at least for the remainder of this year. Highly recommended.
Midland – Archive01 / Realime (Out Now)