Another act to seemingly surface out of thin air, SBTRKT burst onto the scene to remix tracks for the likes of GORILLAZ, MODESELEKTOR ad BASEMENT JAXX.
However, the grime and dubstep infused producer / performer insists it took years to hone his craft before proclamations of his decade long servitude came of fruition. All of which seemed to have payed off. Having to reprobate willing offers of remixes, dismayed at the prospect of premature exposure he seems content in not surrendering to being over used and exposed.
Tying in with his anonymity, SBTRKT, like few of the greats, hides his true identity in the way of a tribal mask. "Live performance and music in general these days seems to be about the celebrity of it...something I'm not into...the music I make is slightly unexpected and the music is part of that idea. I'm really into old cultures and new; also, my background has roots globally. It's inspired the way I conceptually write music, and in the end (the mask) is just the visual identity of that..."
His way of release seems to tie into this ethos, choosing email, twitter and soundcloud to disperse new pieces. Why this in itself is nothing new, as an artist, SBTRKT is something of a revolutionary, not only in calculating an imposing dominance on the grime world, but envisioning the genre altogether. "When I first started playing around with sequencers, I sent out CD demos to my mates named 'future garage'.
With his album released in June, to critical and public acclaim hailing it album of the summer and constructing a live show, SBTRKT has just featured as the supporting artist for HOLY FUCK'S May UK tour.
SBTRKT's compositions, also issued via Ramp, Tempa and elsewhere, feel full and complete. With emphatic bass weight and miscellaneous percussive sounds, the Londoner establishes lasting moods on Step In Shadows, often applying dense builds and ambitious arrangements. Through stuttering samples and an uncompromising rhythmic rumble, EP opener "Colonise" swings hard, with crackles and skipping kicks. The subsequent, growling "Hide or Seek" is equally immense-it's fleshed out and loaded with ideas. Just as thumb pianos bump up against rippling synths on the title track, "Hide or Seek" offers sudden, gorgeous string swells that materialize unexpectedly, with no rhyme or reason. When the violins rush in, from way out in the middle of left field, it's a new beast altogether, as if some pest has gone and yanked off its mask.