Whether as Portable or Bodycode, Alan Abrahams has long been a distinctive presence in dance music. A Process, Abrahams’ latest 12″, is his first for Frankfurt’s Live at Robert Johnson, a singular and adventurous label that thus seems a suitable home for his productions. The 12″ is also his first release since last year’s Into Infinity album, on which he introduced synth-pop elements to his signature, vocal-led jack tracks, though it’s more a return to previous motifs than a major push forward.
The title track’s original mix is thick with hallmarks of Abrahams’s sound, riding on a tough, classicist stab melody and rattling, densely layered drums. Moreover, it features another slice of his self-help lyricism. As he croons lines like, “nothing worthwhile happens easily,” the track seems to naturally ebb and flow with his voice. The “Flutramental” is an interesting prospect, in which Abrahams’ synth strings drone raga-like in the background, while guest Lcio provides a flowing flute solo. The original’s drums and stabs take their time making an appearance, and they’re so propulsive that when they do, they push the flute out entirely. It eventually reemerges, however, newly syncopated with the rhythm. A Process may be typical Abrahams, but it still sounds pretty atypical and free compared to the rest of the market.