Funkineven – Species EP
Funkineven (Steve Julien) gives us five tracks of lo-fi science fiction on Julio Bashmore’s Broadwalk label. Don’t worry – the music is as wild as you’d expect from the artist despite the more conservative label releasing it. The tunes are groovy and raw, bare and effective, making the most of very little. On The Joker, Julien brings the tempo way down and then runs it all the way back up again. It’s a characteristically direct move, one that would be out of place in most DJ sets but fits right in with his anything-goes mixing. It would no doubt level a dancefloor in the right context.
Julien concentrates on groove, accepting incidental technical weirdness as a feature of the music. The kick in Beat Tunnel flanges randomly and the sample in Mars has an uncomfortable crunch to it. The unpredictability is welcome, but what’s more important is the attitude behind it. Julien lets the details work themselves out, encouraging us to do the same and focus on getting down.
Funkineven’s Species EP comes highly recommended for lovers of drum machines, studio jams, and major-key acid lines (see Aviator).