Mark Broom & James Ruskin: Night Nurse EP (Beard Man)
The leading track on this EP is so perfectly named that it nearly makes me laugh out loud. “Pigeon” features a synthesized hook that coo-coo-coos away would be funny if it weren’t so damn infectious. In fact, it’s enough to merit a nice minimal workout just on its own to the extent that it’s surprising when a big reverberated chord strikes two and a half minutes in. A gloomy set of pads and moodier elements creep into frame in its final moments, a bit of a left turn as well. These seemingly unrelated elements all come together in an oddly pleasing way. Norman Nodge streamlines his remix to perfectly fit his aesthetic, punchy and deep. On the other side, “Night Nurse” has a staggered kick that lends it a bit of post-dubstep flavor, but the rest of the track is straight up techno, again contrasting melancholy pads and atmosphere with a persistent bassline (buried amidst the kicks, but comes to the fore later) and light sequencing lines. It’s probably the best of the three tracks, but “Pigeon” is hard to shake. Quality tracks from two veterans of the genre. Side note: I bought the tracks on iTunes, and it sounds like there’s some surface noise, perhaps ripped or mastered from the vinyl? Pops and clicks. Not a terrible thing but slightly odd for an iTunes download.