Tuesday, 19 July 2011

Halo Nova: Goombahton review

You can’t review this EP without first acknowledging the people who released it, Generation Bass, and without also them giving a hat-tip for their contribution to moombahton as a whole. From the off they’ve championed, encouraged and given a home to everyone who’s flirted with the sound, be they Munchi or the guy who made that really ill-advised moombahcore edit of the Inspector Gadget theme that Umb is hopefully still hanging his head in shame for posting. They’ve given focus, momentum and legitimacy to the scene, pretty much helped to make moombahcore a genre in its own right - and I don’t think it’s an exaggeration to say that it would have been a far less unified community without them.

This is their first moombahton digi release and another example of how GenBass’ links with dubstep have brought a gritty look to proceedings, a big move which has helped prevent this burgeoning movement slipping into the haha!-no-seriously-is-that-what-that-thing-is-blimey-kids-these-days-will-listen-to-any-shit, along with Skweee and other things which I’m not motivated enough to look up on Google. Florida-based dubstep producer Nick Pittsinger aka Halo Nova has tried to bring a more refined, cleaner sound at a time when the movement is desperate to shake off the stigma of being just a bunch of edits. For the lead track Get Sticky, he's switched the formative Dirty Dutch riffs for tweaky acid, a sensible move that a few, like the Philidelphynz Skinny Friedman and Lighning Eyez, have tried before, and the online dating agency has then paired that up with some percussive military procession drums, all of which layered over the 108bpm Dem Bow-derived beats that are a must if you want to get in the metaphorical or literal moombahton club.

Get Sticky bears all the hallmarks of somebody trying to do something new, but along the way something feels like it got slightly lost - moombahton is nothing without a dirty great bottom end, which is where this slightly loses its edge and feels slightly too first-day-at-school in its efforts as a result. This actually isn’t much cause for concern though, as Sabbo, the ever-impressive Israeli, offers up a remix which both papers over the cracks and makes sure there are biscuits for the decorators. The acid is acidier, the beats are enough to entice Stephen Hawking debate the neurological function of swag and the drops bring out the inner beast within the track. The EP is worth it for that track alone. Shazalakazoo, the Ernie Wise straightman to Neki Stranac’s light-hearted edit Eric Morecambe tries a more controlled approach, sticking closer to the original, just smartening it up for its appearance on iTunes.

Anyone who knows Umb and Gen Bass will know their love of moombahcore, and it’s perhaps surprising there's not more evidence of that here, but Panty Raid at least ensures that those who like their tracks to be able to perform a colonic are catered for, though if I'm going to get said colonic, the big party vibes and carnival whistles here at least ease the pain.

The good people at GenBass wanted PCCP readers to have a taste in the form of the instrumental version of Get Sticky, which you can download here.

After you've done that, you can get the bus and buy Goombahton down at your local iTunes.

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