A short but sweet 17 minute demo from the UK, this debut from Detritus is as solid as the hard beats that rattle, crunch and pound below its industrious electro surface. It skims from a variety of electronic influences ranging from the percussive and noisy (Converter, Imminent) to the inventive electro stylings of Snog.
The title track ushers in the disc with a blast of repetitive, driving rhythms and starkly melodic background tones. The breakneck programming flavors the track with a hyperactive quality. This carries over into "Detritus," the percussion taking on a slight drum n' bass feel, with a steady, pulsing beat guiding it through all its various shifts and changes. Very loop oriented in structure. "Nailed" pulls back on the pace and adds some really nice orchestral sounding programming to the mix. The rhythms still writhe with a fair bit of grit, but they surrender the spotlight to these smooth, gliding harmonies. Some voice samples, the only words on the disc, are collaged throughout the piece. Something really clicks with this one, and it stands out among the four.
"Dust" throws the rhythm section back into full force for the dance friendly finale. A steady 4/4 beat (the kind that sounds like any other techno track when you crank it up and stand across the street) starts things off, with a subtle but omnipresent choral/chanting sample slowly gaining prominence as the song continues. The beats interchange back and forth, picking up more layers with every switch and finally coming to a close with a different strain of the same straightforward drum n' bass heard earlier.
Aside from the somewhat obvious complaint that this disc is too damn short (probably some of the best feedback a demo can receive), Martyr is an impressive debut that promises even more impressive things to come. Three of these tracks are up at mp3.com for you to make up your own mind.