Vinicius Honorio, also known as BTK, has a decades long history as a performer and producer, with much success and accolades as a dark drum’n’bass artist. His BTK moniker has enjoyed release on an array of respected labels over the years, toured internationally and received support from some of the biggest names in dnb, including Optical, Ed Rush, Ink, Andy C and many others. Since 2014 he’s also been making massive moves in techno and has released tracks on a range of esteemed labels like Planet Rhythm, DrumCode, Illegal Alien, Skeleton, Arts, & Hayes.
Developer’s imprint Modularz has een an important techno-pushing powerhouse since its inception in 2009. Its roster is practically a “who’s who” of techno– Developer himself, Edit Select, Jeroen Search, Terrence Dixon, Elyas, Audio Injection, Oscar Mulero, Stanislav Tolkachev, Rebekah, Eduardo de la Calle, Silent Servant, Truncate…the list goes on. Vinicius now adds his name to this roster with three intense stompers.
“Shinobi” shuffles in with a bouncing beat and trippy sound-design, clangy metal hits looping as jittery hats pull the rhythm in unexpected ways. The synth swirls and metallic trills are subtle and carefully placed, the looping synth parts creating mystery and anticipation, slowly pulling you in and casting a spell. Mysterious but not quite fully dark, the track also takes us a bit into sci-fi territory without fully blasting off into outer space … the mystery is human, not alien.
Continuing in this almost earthy direction, “Vibrations” resonates with a grounded, anchored, assuredness. Built around a hypnotic vocal, “Vibrations” is controlled by a syncopated percussion like loop that slowly pans in stereo as the beat complements and works against it, creating a powerful push/pull within the groove. These are the kinds of “riddim forces” that make dancers move their feet, even if they are tired and don’t feel like dancing. Vinicius’ productions here also seem to take on many subtle details, sounds and textures in the soundfield that are present, but aren’t fully upfront thus drawing the ear in even further, creating focal points for the mind to follow.
The last cut on this EP, the title track, is the standout. The name resonates, I would imagine born out of pandemic vibes, emergency on planet Earth, acknowledging in track form the trouble we humans are experiencing. The last 2 years have taught us all that we are on borrowed time. The synths and sound-design reflect these feelings perfectly. The main synth is industrial and grinding, the pattern unusual and complex, herky-jerky, grimy, dark, machine-like and unrelenting. The vibe is unmistakable, with anxiety and even fear bleeding through. I personally have been feeling that lately dance music has not been the best at reflecting the soul and trouble of the times. Titles have always been important in techno in particular, leading the listener conceptually.
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