Review: Myown – Vesna

Last year the fledgling label left_blank put out three stunning releases from Vessel, Lorca and Visionist and El Kid, and with each the standard was raised for what would follow. The latest effort comes from Russian producer Myown, aka Vtgnike. There isn’t much known about him, but he’s got some mind-bending tracks on Soundcloud, in which he redefines Russian pop, stoner reggae and anything you ever thought about mashups with this entirely unexpected blend of Aaliyah and DJ Rolando, and he posts some weird-ass shit on Tumblr. The “Vesna” EP is on an entirely different plane of existence, sidestepping any popular-culture sensibilities all together, closer in mood and style to his “Sueta Nebitiya” album for Radology, as he fuses paranoid garage beats with found recordings and demented soundscapes.

“Suromna”, seemingly named after a town in the Vladimir area east of Moscow, kicks off with time-signature-less beats that merge with unrecognisable vocal samples and other-worldly droning, a combination of late-night imaginings and nightmares. A beautiful Spanish guitar lilts above the settled chaos, as the track drifts towards what one might term a standard structure, before it is swiftly chopped, looped, flipped and undermined by boisterous percussion and unstoppable bass-stabs. This manic fluster gives way to gentle disquiet, a resolved groove, before cutting out without warning. “Vesna” plays out like a paranoid, voyeuristic take on UK garage. Present and correct are the shuffling beats and mutated basslines, but instead of the standard chopped-up vocal samples, one might expect from such a track, it feels like the sampled song – a John Doe in this case – is being played out underwater and in its entirety. It’s brimming with awkward terror, and I can’t wait to see the fun DJs will have in mixing this particularly ungainly track.

“You Can Stop Everytime” would be a standout track on any release, but in this case, standing as it does alongside two tracks of such quality, it’s simply the perfect closer. A steady 120, it takes a brief easy-listening sample and fuses it with gentle beats, heart-warming melodies and murmured buzz for three-and-a-half minutes of throbbing bliss. It even sticks to a proper 4/4 structure, making it the perfect conclusion to this otherwise frenetic EP. A few months ago El Kid tweeted the following: “LB004 + LB005 masters sound massive. Watch @leftblankuk carve themselves a niche.” With these three tracks you can see that the label is keen to explore the twisted, awkward side of house and garage in a way that no one else is right now. You’ve heard LB004 – just wait till you see what Vessel has in store on LB005. While you wait for these to drop, check out the free track “Kozerog”, shared by Little White Earbuds. I actually recognised that sample…

LB004: Myown – Vesna (Preview) – Forthcoming 19.03.12 by left_blank

Myown – Vesna is out on left_blank on March 19

Aidan Hanratty

Dublin ...