Monobox – Rectangle / Film – M-Plant

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Title: Film / Rectangle
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As part of M-Plant’s 20th Anniversary, it’s good to see Robert Hood re-visit one of his decisive monikers, Monobox. 

Blatantly influenced by Sci-Fi’s sensibilities, Hood’s original project started life way back in 1996 with a series of 12”s. Realm, Downtown and Population were released on M-Plant between then and 2001. Molecule, for the French label, Logistic, was the last release over ten years ago in 2003. So with the 20th Anniversary upon us it seems an ideal time for a new release to be heard by the next generation of techno head-nodders, and the old.

Film has that warm, absorbing, familiar sub-bass that gradually builds over the course of the track and grows ever more threatening as it progresses. This menace is in turn supported by a minimal 4/4 kick and driving percussion while the enticing melody, in contrast, hovers just above everything, slowly drifting through the track like smoke breathed out from some kind of Alien face.

Rectangle is harder, metallic edged b-side mixing fodder. The thumping kick ploughs along singlemindedly while bursts of the archetypal techno ride cymbol ring out intermittently. It’s mechanical elements are tempered, however, by an otherworldly harmony that spins out across the track, in similar fashion to Film, and in full keeping with the theme of the Monobox moniker.

It’s not an overwhelming release but there is a subtlety to Hood’s minimilism that’s always present, and while not being particularly innovative in production there’s always that mesmerising quality in these hooks and melodies that just makes you smile. Definitely worth a check.