After his recent contribution to Second State’s latest compilation, DJ/Producer Kai Van Dongen presents his first solo release with the Berlin favourite. Based in London by way of Johannesburg, Kai is quickly establishing his rightful place within the scene, with additional releases across some of techno’s most revered labels already under his belt.
“Flash” opens up the record with high intensity fast paced rhythms. Heavy kick drums pound while frantic hi-hats gradually grow and build into the track before an array of percussions are brought into the mix. A deep electro twinged bass line adds extra weight to the soundscape while fluttering keys float here and there before submerging into the powerful bass. Up next is “Vortex”, Kai makes use of a number of impactful breakdowns that separate the bass driven main body. Heaving kick drums and a low, tremouring bassline dominate the opening, drawing you in further before twisted synth notes are slowly dragged in. A choppy vocal sample reverberates over the riotous drums as the various elements are eliminated and faded out to close.
On the flip side is “Hypno 6”. This celestial cut dials back the intensity while still managing to deliver on impact. A myriad of bleeps and tweets align together to build the melody while toms, kicks and snares drive the rhythm. Spiked cymbals and cosmic synths constitute a sci-fi narrative, while remaining firmly club-driven. Closing out the record is “Acid Wave”. As the title suggests, this thriving acid laced roller ends the record on a triumphant high-note. The 303 takes full control while a thumping kick drum and searing hot cymbals take care of the percussion. Major keys play and overlap upon one another to develop an undeniably upbeat and joyful mood to the closer. Not your usual acid track, but one that shows the creativity and cunning of Van Dongen’s productions.