John Talabot is another man masked in mystery. With his face concealed in a veil of Tin- Foil, this Barcelona-based producer has released a continuous flow of underground house records since 2009; all of which are deep, cavernous floor-fillers that have been murdering the dance- floor with their glorious, upbeat licks.
Over his relatively short career Talabot has released on a few labels, Permanent Vacation, Young Turks and his own Hivern Discs imprint, and it’s this avenue that Talabot has decided to release his debut Fin, a mysterious, sad and pulsing house record that is not only a significant departure from previous material, but is one of the best releases of the year so far.
While this record replicates the sounds of the inner city, and the alley way ambiance of producers like Burial, the first track ‘Depak Ine’ hints at another side of this metropolitan hustle. Centering around this eerie Amazonian jungle loop, Talabot plays on the similarities between urban decay and the constricting nature of the rainforest, and utilises the mystery of these sounds to create a thick collage of interlocking primal melodies which all groove gloriously around the steady clicks and shuffles of progressive house.
Despite the strangness of these sounds, this record is certainly geared toward the 5 AM sweat pit of the dance-floor. ‘Destiny ft. Pional ‘ showcases the strong undercurrent of pop, and soulful house prevalent in his material. Pional’s lush, and layered, vocal lines perfectly compliment the angelic swoops of the synth that sound like showers of gold dust against the gruff metropolitan beat.
Throughout the record Talabot perfectly orchestrates these points into moments of striking analog beauty. As the record progresses, it is clear that Talabot is not remotely intimidated by the confines of house , and the skeletal structure of the basic 4/4 pattern. Constantly morphing the beat around this machine gun syncopation, it’s mutating the confines of the basic 4/4 pattern that Talabot really uses his artistic vision to attack the senses. ‘ Oro Y Strange’ is a harrowing track that loops around desolate screams, replicating the dark sounds of the city’s underbelly. One of the many highlights of this record is the gloriously upbeat “Last Land”, a euphoric club-banger that once again showcases the producers skill in creating strong rhythmic tracks that seem eternal and ever progressive.
As you can probably tell this record is packed full of suprises at every turn, so I’ll leave the next bit up to you. All I can say is, even if you don’t do anything else today, go and listen to this record. Thank me later.