As music lovers, we all have sounds that do something strange to us. It doesn’t matter whether it’s violins played a certain way in an orchestral piece, or the twang of an overdriven Rickenbacker in a punk tune the fact remains that there is always some form of sound that works on our psyche and our feet better than others. For me, I’ve never really liked hearing a 303 scream and chatter in that very trancey way that seems more and more common these days. It’s probably something to do with the resonance that means it cuts through a mix better as a lead than the alternatives. Sure, there are times that it gets me going, but my choice is a 303 going the other way – getting down and dirty amongst the lower registers and filling up a track with the snarl and bite that very few other instruments come close to emulating. I often find it a shame when I hear people talking about the ‘Acid Sound’ being rinsed out these days, because they are mostly talking about the first example here, and virtually never the second, and the second – if you listen to a lot of those old records – is really what defines Acid House.
First coming to our attention on last years DABJ All-stars Vol 1 for Glasgow label Dixon Avenue Basement Jams – a record that continues to stand out even amongst Dixon Avenues other A-grade releases – TX Connect has finally got his own full EP, and it’s a vicious beast of a record that the DABJ one only barely prepared us for.
Eternal Acid is a darkside party anthem of epic proportions, a detuned, thuggish 303 weaving all over the place like a devil dog full of Buckfast and barely aware of the trouble it’s causing. And beyond that monster bass, the snares and cymbals hold a running fire fight for frequency domination, each trading their blows and licks across nine minutes of some of the blackest, most raging acid you will probably hear this year. There’s barely a moment to catch your breath before Jackin’ Like There Ain’t No tomorrow rolls in; in other hands this slightly airier, almost synth-pop piece would be exactly that, but here it morphs constantly, teasing us with belches and growls and threatening to turn on us if we take our eyes of it for even a second.
The B side is from the same scoured country. Living Thru Your Life similar in mood to Eternal Acid but somehow more stripped down, yet more open and meaner in it’s own way, the tight syncopated beats marshalling a proper Acid march onwards and upwards before it unexpectedly loosens up and dissolves at the end. Cheetah Blades remakes the formula, adding a touch of melody to a tearing riff and the stomping beats.
I don’t know if TX Connect feels the same way about the raw, heavy bark and grind of the 303, the clatter of snares and thump of toms as I do, but judging on this, his first release on fledgling label Bad Mums Club, he seems to be someone with a fine understanding of the sort of down low madness that freaks out the mind and fills up the dance floor.