Model 500 “OFI” (R&S)
Seemingly from out of nowhere, Juan Atkins revives the flying saucer attack of Model 500 with a hot new single, his first in quite some time under the moniker. “OFI” stands for “Object Fying, Indentified,” and it can be considered a 20-years-later sequel of sorts to “No UFOs” from his 80s heyday. The track has a modulated vocal that provides a hook, but the main draw is the fat, bass-heavy electro jam that accompanies it. It’s a massive chunky groove full of squiggly arpeggios and sequencer patterns that demonstrate once more how Atkins is a master of his craft. B-side “Huesca” is more of a straight up Detroit techno number, coursing at a speedy tempo with the same techy goodness that defined much of Model 500’s seminal output (as well as some of Atkins’ Infiniti material in the 90s). Despite so through and through harking back to Atkins’ earlier days as a producer, these tracks are really exciting and manage to sound fresh. Mad Mike turns in a remix of the title cut which is a little bit more DJ tool-oriented and more like a tweaked re-edit than a thorough remix concept, but it still manages to capture the energy of the original while making it easier to mix in/out. It’s great to hear 2 solid new cuts from Model 500 that are so strong for both electro and techno (and everything in between) DJs.