(08.18.08) Over five and a half years since his first release for Rednetic Recordings, their founder and hard working electronic musician in his own right Mark Streatfield releases a new album for the label. Soul Paradox sees the return of his Zainetica project after spending the intervening years releasing material through a long list of labels including Lacedmilk, Enpeg Digital, Boltfish and Kahvi amongst others. The album is available in a numbered limited edition CD digipack edition and as a digital download direct from the Rednetic website.
Soul Paradox, the follow up to Escaping Dust, the debut release for both Zainetica and Rednetic early in 2003, is a 74 minute album consisting of 11 tracks that vary in length from around six to eight minutes. The music itself is very precise, sharp and calculated but is certainly not devoid of feeling or lush, warm tones. Undoubtedly drawing from his heavily Detroit influenced side project Cyan341, Streatfield pushes the boundaries further with Zainetica, mixing it with classic glitch electronics and experimenting with a fusion of electronic genres to produce a hybrid sound of his own. With numerous releases to his name over the last few years Streatfield has refined his sound whilst still allowing himself scope to experiment and subtly expand on his ideas. Take for example the glitchy metallic distortion of “People More Fuel” or the mellow bassy ambience of “Delicate Wings,” both are tracks from earlier releases and feature various degrees of deviation from the crisp, rhythmic electronica found throughout the album. Another recurring factor throughout Soul Paradox is an underlying ambient quality that floats along adding a degree of warm emotion and a soundtrack quality that compliments the more obvious rhythmic elements. Throughout the album, although it often exhibits bassy tones, crisp rhythms and a degree of glitchiness, each track also has a slightly retro electronic quality resembling the warm sound of analogue synths. Although present throughout the album in various degrees, it is on the tracks like “Nomad” and “Soul Paradox” that the Detroit influence shines brightest; the first a deep bassy techno influenced whir and the second a jittery bassy dub. Streatfield even fuses his techno rhythms with trance style synths for “Fat Angus” towards the end of the album. Don’t let that put you off however as they are intelligently incorporated into the track in a creative way that avoids the inevitable cheese factor that can be introduced if they are not used with some discretion and thought. Although the album flows nicely from track to track, Streatfield allows himself a certain degree of scope to experiment, discretely taking his tracks in different directions whilst maintaining the consistency an album needs to be taken as a coherent piece of related musical pieces.
Rednetic, along with other British labels such as Cactus Island, Expanding, Boltfish and the newly resurrected Neo Ouija label, have and continue to produce consistently high quality music from new and recognised names on the electronic music scene. Soul Paradox is no exception with Rednetic continuing to put out some of the best beat-infused melodic electronic music around.
Soul Paradox is out now on Rednetic. [Purchase]