darko Album Review: Don’t Be Scared Of The darko

Sorry to have missed you last week, it has been a crazy time of change for Where’s The Vibe: all good things and growth we promise. But this week we are back and bringing you a healthy dose of techno. It is time to shut out the lights and embrace the dark…o. darko, Dirty South’s latest album, was released last week, on November 16, 2018. This album is an absolute trip and sparks every receptor in your brain. Dirty South creates a beautiful 41 minute experience of house/techno, which is given shape and direction through the use of melody. With that being said, lets find out what lies in the darko.

One of the crazy things about being in the dark is knowing there is so much in it, as you look into it, but you only know what is truly there when you get to it. Dirty South takes this same phenomenon and applies it to darko. Techno/house is the darkness that darko puts us in, each song is the listener realizing exactly what is in the dark. The album allows the listener to find so much within the genre and each song is a different set of feeling. darko instead shys away from being a “journey”, and more an encounter with the techno soundscape of each melody.

Beginning with ‘Temps’, darko starts off with this very mellow rise into the album. Opening with dulled synth and muffled vocals, that rise into the full body of the beat. The song is very relaxed and provactive. It is a smooth listen. The synth sounds rise and fall while the high end melody loops; a pattern which is returned to after the large build. Listeners loosen up at each slide, and are just prepared to listen to the rest of the ablum.

Relaxed techno persists into ‘Kino’, but the song has a little more gusto. Dirty South takes the sense of security found in the pattern of ‘Temps’ and locks the listener onto another mid level pattern with ‘Kino’. The song is bouncier however, and the bass defines it much more. ‘Kino’ features strong snare and beats that land sharper- beats do not slide into one another like in ‘Temps’. By using sharper beats, the listener can really hear each line overlapping one another. This is especially heard later in the song when there is the loud building pitch that builds back into the original rhythm.

‘Kino’ fades out into a high whistle sound and is left behind as ‘Cassetta’ plays. We say left behind because ‘Cassetta’ leads with everything it is going to provide. This song inspires the head bobbing. Everything in ‘Cassetta’ is inpiring a lot more movement. It feels fuller and bodied. It is a work where every piece, beat, and sound are stitched together so the product is greater than the sum of its parts. The song needs nothing added or taken- it just belongs exactly the way it is. A phenomenal track all around.

‘Cassetta’ fades out and ‘Piksi’ ominously makes itself present. A humming of chords followed by the emergence of the guiding melody brings the listener into the building of this club classic. ‘Piski’ has sounds, of all sorts, emerging all through the song. All while using the first two rhythms heard to keep you moving. The song is unique and energetic even with the darker vibe that it creates. You love it because it is doing so much with sound, while still staying true to that melodic house feel.

The album until this point has had amazing build-on’s, but with ‘Konda’ Dirty South defines build-up. The song uses volume, the initial melody, and other shaping sounds to make you feel this state of anticipation through the entire song. You want to keep moving and feeling each sound, because it feels like every moment of ‘Konda’ is building to the greatest moment ever. The song builds up into build-ups that build up. It is an amazing cycle and makes the listeners heart race and curiosity spike.

‘Lava’ does exactly what you’d expect: sets your feet on fire. This song moves your entire body, and has one of the best club vibes of the album. You feel that classic house bass line vibrate from your chest to your feet through the whole song. Not to mention that the use of an amazing build up, with the transformation of the initial melody sound and the scooping static bass keeps the song interesting. The song moves along as you move along the dance floor. Even sitting you cant help but bounce the whole top half of your body. The song even adds another level as it goes dormant, just to erupt ‘Lava’ again before closing out.

Keep your body moving after ‘Lava’, because ‘Rossa’ is another club bop. ‘Rossa’ has a deeper feel than its predecesor, but does not shy away from the dance floor. The guiding melody starts lower than mid level pitch, and the song does not really introduce anything higher than that until later. By doing that, it gives the song a very underground vibe. Underground is where is stays too. Even with the higher effects in the build, ‘Rossa’ brings it right back down to where it started. It is deep sweaty techno/house.

‘Corda’ is the album closer. Dirty South wraps up darko by sythesizing the energy of club house and techno with the relaxed nature of melodic house. Using the transe feel that existed earlier in the album, while still sustaining some of the higher energy of the back end of the album. Each song really did belong to its own sound, but it is good to see ‘Cobra’ show a little piece of each sound type. A great piece alone, but also a great cap to darko.

You can flick the lights back on, because that takes us out of darko. Looking onto the album, you can see what a work it is. Dirty South sculpts techno and house into so many different forms this album, while still staying true to the genre. It is amazing how on one album there is very head based music and also extremely body based music. darko is without a doubt one strong album, and in the end nothing to be afraid of. So shut out the lights with ease, because techno house beats are all there is in the darko.

Until next time.


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