As the experimental envelop is torn to shreds, Roel Funken offers the Schematic team a futuristic balance of primed electronics tied to leftfield dub extracts and leaves listeners to decipher for themselves how these frequency ranges will interact with their lives.
[Release page] There’s really no stopping the Funcken brothers. As Don steps back for a breather, Roel forges forward and keeps the family name and reputation intact. Jumping on-board the mighty Schematic ship this time, Roel dives into both known and unknown environments on Mercury Retrograde. Collaborations and remix duties aren’t too far in the distance here as Rena Jones (Cartesian Binary), Cor Bolten (Tympanik Audio), Seaming To as well as Scanone (Outside) are all mixed into the recipe. But just as these sonic assistants alter and detail even further the fabric of electronics, so too does Roel Funcken in his constant mission to create something new and fresh in the cosmos of wobbly electronics.
Mercury Retrograde, while dipped inside bass bins filled with beats and rhythmic distortions, also unveils several hidden beauties. Tracks like “Deer” (a remix for Seaming To), “Smart Ambient” (a remix for Known Rebel), “Mesmer” (collaboration with Rena Jones) and “Bextures Teeth” (video below) bring with them a personal warmth and spark that is engulfing in its foray of emotion and direct motion. Pushing time out of the way and making room for melancholy and peaceful transmissions, these pieces are quite consuming and contagious. Elsewhere the brain is set to stun as tracks like “Boose Gumps,” “Cork Walls” and “Gangsta Riddim” (a remix for Scanone) ricochet their extraterrestrial funk and dub via coherent rhythm skewing and percussive manipulation. Fragments of Shadowhuntaz break through on the rap version of “Cork Walls” (which was the initial trigger for this track and is only available as a download here). “Textures,” perhaps the most brittle of the pack—and the closing entity—derails its preceding tracks and shines its Miles Tilmann’esque ambience and low-riding flood of melodies to unearth a cosmic bubble of sound.
As the experimental envelop is torn to shreds, Roel Funcken offers the Schematic team a futuristic balance of primed electronics tied to leftfield dub extracts and leaves listeners to decipher for themselves how these frequency ranges will interact with their lives. Day or night, Mercury Retrograde is an accomplished slice of audio exploration that slaps the ears and heart around with ease and finesse.