Artist: Slam
Title: Azure
Label: Soma Records
By: Darren Rhys | 19 March 2007
  • A: Part One
  • B: Part Two

Slam "Azure"

Out Now on Soma Records

Slam need no introduction. Synonymous with Glasgow's underground scene and their genre defying record label, Soma, the duo have garnered a reputation as international DJs, accomplished recording artists and respected collaborators.

After a short break from the scene, you'd be forgiven for thinking Orde Meikle and Stuart McMillan were enjoying a well earned break, yet they return showing the fruits of their studio labours with 'Azure', a pre-cursor to their eagerly anticipated long player.

In truth, there is little to define between the two parts of this release. Upon playing 'Part One', I was left feeling slightly cold by the opening arpeggiated melodies which sounded extremely familiar, seemingly presets from a couple of well known VST instruments. A techy beat carries things along initially, and, determined to soldier on to the end of the track, the introduction of a stunning array of warm pads, strings and an intricate weave of emotive synths certainly endeared me to the piece. A careful sequence of evolving fx add an almost industrial sounding undertone to proceedings. The result is another monster from Slam, yet more musical than one would have expected and certainly something which is going to be around for some time to come.

Part Two continues in much the same fashion, a slightly more reserved introduction being the obvious difference. The mix would probably suit the end of a set, building constantly to a sublime crescendo.

The tracks aren't overly complex, but this is not to the detriment of the pieces, both of which are infectious. If this is what we can expect from Slam's forthcoming album, then I'm sure there won't be many complaints both from existing fans of the Scottish wizards and those being introduced to these steadfast contributors to the underground electronic scene. Keep an ear out for the 4th studio album, with DJ support already pouring in from the likes of Laurent Garnier, Francois Kevorkian, Steve Bug and Tom Middleton.

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