Dj Nate - Hatas Our Motivation
Reviewed by Chris Lawes Source: (Hyponik)
Footwork, a small, self contained dance scene, until recently restricted to a handful of colleges and public schools in Chicago, and it’s affiliated musical style juke has been generating a lot of interest in the UK’s music media lately. Helping the spread of this hyperactive bastard offspring of ghetto house, booty and hip-hop is 20 year old Nathan Clark AKA Heat Squad’s DJ Nate.
Originally intended for use in his crew’s battles in gymnasiums and parking lots in his native Chi-town, Clark and his contemporaries’ fast-paced, manically layered, 909 excursions have been directly influencing musical shifts across the pond (think Addison Groove’s Footcrab, or Ramadanman’s Work Them) so it was only a matter of time before a UK label made the move to transplant some of this roughly hewn originality from the blog feeds and battles to record boxes and clubs over here. Keen to re-assert their credentials for forward thinking signings, Planet Mu have stepped up and bagged DJ Nate for his debut album release Da Trak Genious, preceded by this 12″ Hatas Our Motivation
All six tracks on this release are characterised by clattering, barely quantised 909-esque toms, collapsing into themselves yet providing a sparse, quasi-rhythmic framework for Clark to drape layers of coarse bass, ominous synths, one-shots and audaciously sourced multi-pitched samples, all triggered with a looseness and fluidity that leaves the ear struggling to keep up.
The title track is essentially a study of how far a single sample can be looped, cut and stretched, a "haters our motivation" vocal snippet taken to points beyond those that any other producer would dare to go. He's sailing pretty close to the wind with the Evanescence sampling See Into My Eyes too, dropping the pitch of the vocal down so far, and so rapidly that the listener is left floundering among the frenetically popping toms and digital artifacts, until the mind locks onto the cut at the end of the 8 bar phrase and order is partially restored. At first listen, this shifting, rhythmically unstable material can give the impression of an ADHD sufferer with his Ritalin supply cut off, locked in a room and given an MPC on which to act out his frustration, yet closer inspection reveals moments of intelligent aural hypnotism and a genuinely ingenious insight into the psychology of music for dancing.
What we’re listening to here is a movement in gestation, a group of musically unconstrained, creatively naive fanatics steadily and independently turning an obscure hobby into an artform. And it’s exciting.
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