Killekill revel in the peculiar. Whatever the genre — from stark, unnerving techno to gnawing acid — the Berlin imprint work the art of the tic: a brief eccentricity, however minor, that causes one to perk up and take notice. It’s what separates them from contemporaries that ply the norm and what makes their releases worth seeking out. Sometimes the tic arrives in the form of a massively confounding “WTF is this sound even doing in a dance song?” moment. Other times it’s more subtle, burrowing its way through your conscious until you’re struck with an eventual realization of what you’re actually hearing. Then there’s the off-hand instance where both occur, as is the case with this most recent offering from Ian McDonnell, Irish techno producer and one-half of Lakker, working here as Eomac. “Spoock” consists of two primary components: an electrically charged kick and a rusty bike tire, rotating at a haphazard angle. Upon arrival, it’s maddening and almost off-putting. Yet its ability to mutate by the bar, never circling through with precisely the same pitch, sucks the listener further into the grinder. McDonnell then introduces a ping-pong slap and with it, the realization that taken individually, any of these three sounds would be negligible. But by paying heed to the manner with which they cascade off one another, he’s utilized them to concoct a serrated bit of techno lunacy.
On the flip, remix duties fall upon Lucy. And to no surprise, given his propensity for all things foreboding, it’s as ominous as the original. The Stroboscopic Artefacts boss streamlines things some, opting for a more linear approach, doggedly building from a dissonant croak rather than forcing us immediately into the squalor. The creaky tire does reappear, though Lucy has let the air out, weaving the remains through the proceedings. Of the two other included originals, “Stylised & Desensitised” is my pick. Understated in comparison, McDonnell tentatively lets life into the track, introducing fleeting bursts of analogous clinks as it chugs along. It’s without the same smack-dab wonderment of “Spoock,” but musters a comparable bit of spectral dread. “No Name” works out a vocal sigh, framing it around some upticked drum programming reminiscent of Hessle’s trademark. Within the context of Killekill’s loosely-defined arsenal, Spoock serves as a proper introduction to a producer deserving of your attention, in the most immediate sense.