seems like this year is the most productive and diverse for patrick stevens of hypnoskull’s fame. escape3 organization is putting out releases at amazing speed, exploring different dimensions of rhythmic electronic music. somehow on each subsequent release patrick manages to present a different focus on different aspects of pure rhythms. starting with sona eact where harsh pulverizing beats are taken to the violent extremes, continuing with tunnel and its almost punk attitude spliced with straightforward technoid rhythms while hypnoskull seems to embody it all and use “lighter” approach to sound manipulation. and when you thought that there was no more room left to squeeze yet another project in - patrick comes up with reset. released on unit (technoid offspring of pbr), this cd keeps up with traditions established by the label and delivers hard uncompromising techno loops, compressed and charged to the point of ultimate intensity.
this relatively new (started in 1999) project is the most techno-oriented side of patrick. hard upbeat techno rhythms are the driving force here. ranging from crashing monotonous textures to lighter and more “jumpy” patterns contrasted with sparse and detached atmospheric pieces. the percussion is precisely controlled, polished and manipulated contained within the tight genre boundaries. this cd is not as hypnotizing as hypnoskull and not nearly as crushing and dense as sona eact. loops possess certain density and heaviness remaining at the same time within the realm of techno. small amount of background machine sounds and noises are added to the mix (after all it would not be patrick’s project without them). as usual with hypnoskull-related projects, variations are built on top of persistent driving loops, giving the music a definite “streamlined” feel, and as usual you are advised to listen to it loud and with a good set of headphones - it loses most of its charm when listened to on a weak stereosystem.
I found “ion cro” to be very pulverizing and energetic release, a hard techno with intentional monotony and precisely controlled harshness. reset is surprisingly solid and focused project presenting yet another side of hypnoskull’s sound. my list of favorite bands working under escape3 will have to include reset, together with sona eact that got there earlier.