DJ Joe McBride AKA Synkro was yet another recommendation from a friend but this one took me on quite the journey of discovering new artists, unheard of (by me) until I started digging through older Synkro tracks. Another artist playing around the 2-step, future garage, electronic scene but also delving into the ambient, futuristic ether. This immediately appealed to me and I started asking around if anyone knew of anyone else similar……I found quite a bit
Synkro – Changes
With almost 40 releases under his belt with various collaborations Synkro released his debut full length LP ‘Changes‘ September 18th 2015. While developing his unique sound from within the dub-step era, he seems determined to resist classification, hearing influences from Boards Of Canada, dBridge, Burial and Oneohtrix Point Never. Now signed to Apollo Records, Changes remains bass-heavy but can retain the scatty 2-step beats of Burial yet still take you on an atmospheric journey. One of the best albums of 2015 so far!
Only a few days of this album dropping I caught an article by a favourite label of mine A Strangely Isolated Place, reviewing Joe McBrides latest and it referenced him being one half of Kiyoko. A band that I was already familiar with (but wasn’t aware of the Synkro connection) because of their ‘Isolated mix’ a few months back. A much more chilled out affair featuring chosen tracks by Synkro, Kiyoko, Jon Hopkins and Tangerine Dream to name a few…
Wanting to find some more like this, I left a message on the ASIP page and got a suggestion that I try an artist called ASC. Specifically his releases on Auxiliary records…..well, I didn’t get that far! His Silent Season were the first I found and I loved them!
ASC – Imagine The Future
Much more on the dark ambient side with a soundscape feel to the album. James Clements’ ASC is full of intricately detailed and well thought out productions, almost telling some sort of futuristic story. Lots of sound effects and atmosphere that make these songs a must for listening to through headphones! Having been signed to many different electronic labels 2010 saw ASC launch his own imprint Auxiliary.
Synth Sense – Tomorrow’s World
Released on Auxiliary and staying on the dark ambient side of telling a musical story, Synth Sense do a very good job of portraying an almost dystopian style future Earth with a nod of the head to Blade Runner with track titles like Nexus 1. Having started their career making Drum ‘n’ Bass, Synth Sense still like to produce their music around the same concept but not to be held back by stereotypes and draw heavily from film and sci-fi giving their music a cinematic feel to them.
Not content with all these newly discovered tunes, I dug a little deeper! Seems Synkro Joe has a lot more work to listen to out there….
Akkord is another project of Joe Synkro, this time pairing up with Liam Blackburn (Indigo). Not totally leaving aside the ambient tendencies of Synkro and Kiyoko, Akkord still lines up the 2-step qualities but also ties it in nicely with some jungle, dubstep and techno. A little more hard hitting but quality tunes none the less!
That only leaves Liam Blackburn to finish with! As Indigo he follows along similar footsteps as Joe Synkro, maybe a little stronger on the beats in the jungle/DnB field but as he now goes under the name Ancestral Voices, things have mellowed once again back into the realm of ambiance. Again almost cinematic in feel. With an album coming out next week, check the trailer!