BRIGHT lights, hydraulic powered stage apparatus, and a whole lot of garage/house crossover beats were on show at Glasgow’s SSE Hydro on Thursday night as Disclosure kicked off their UK tour.
Bristol’s very own Julio Bashmore has been in the spotlight of the British dance music ever since his debut EP on Claude Vonstroke’s highly influential Dirtybird circa 2009. A few more monster tracks like Battle For Middle You and the almost legendary Au Seve, and you’ve got a producer with a bit of pressure on his hands to keep up the “banger-momentum”, a dilemma many artists face after their slightly above-average production is heralded as the status quo. Many, like Duke Dumont and unfortunately Disclosure as it seems, don’t go down the right path when harmonising between both the underground and mainstream worlds.
From the get-go, we’re graced with a raw house beat coloured with soul samples, a very homemade style of production as opposed to a crisp Central London studio production. Smooth sun-kissed tracks like lead single “Holdin’ On” are the kind of songs that deserve to be on airways, as I’m sure BBC Radio 1 will at least put it on their C-list of frequently played music (or possibly the notorious “In New Music We Trust” list). “Rhythm of Auld” is a beautiful, warm time machine bringing back the deep soul to the general public courtesy of J’Danna, a vocalist that makes three appearances on the album.
This album isn’t an ode to just disco, garage or anything specific. There are many pop-oriented dance songs like “Let Me Be Your Weakness”, and some straight up bite-size club tracks shortened for the sake of the listener’s attention span (e.g. “Bark” and “What’s Mine Is Mine”). In reality, this is the sweet spot for any dance producer trying to navigate both extremities of the dance scene while maintaining artistic integrity. It could even be said that this is the sophomore album Disclosure need to have; a more mature edition of the type of music made on Settle, which nonetheless was a great album.
There’s something special happening at the intersection between UK garage rhythms, house music tempos, and deep dubstep whomps. Events like AC Slater’s Night Bass series in Los Angeles prove that the US palate is primed for this emergent style. For the uninitiated, the Certified Jackin’ YouTube channel is one of the best outlets to keep track of it all, and if you dig through its archives, one name will appear over and over: Chris Lorenzo.