Rndm, Third Hand Smoke

Artwork by Clair Morgan


Buy Vinyl

I first heard of Dial’s plan to start a deep house sub-label called Laid about two years ago. It sounded like a great idea; a way to bring in a fresh sound in what was then still a minimal-soaked dance music world. Finally in 2009 Dial’s younger brother was born with the first two records from Laid. Of course, a lot happens in two years of dance music history. Laid’s opening salvo comes after deep house has been “revived,” this time with the minimal bandwagon in tow, their vacuousness made only more obvious by all the a cappellas professing “soul.” After a wonderful inauguration by Detriot’s own Rick Wade, Oliver Kargl, best known as Rndm, continues to steer Laid into the deep end.

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Laid is perhaps an unexpected home for Kargl’s first solo release aside from his contribution to last year’s “You Are My Mate” comp. His body of work with Efdemin as Pigon is so techno oriented, I figured Rndm to be the techno lover of the bunch. Not so, as “Third Hand Smoke” is house to the core. Its laid back shuffle of kick drums and acoustic percussion takes the tune through a swirl of silky pads, its devastating three note bass line locking everything together. The breakdown is so expertly crafted, anticipation for the bass line creates pure musical euphoria nearly overtaking the casual atmosphere Rndm has created. For me, “Third Hand Smoke” easily sits with “Silent State” as one of the best house tunes produced this year.

On the flip we find Rndm’s “K271 RMX” of John Robert’s “Relate,” which is forthcoming on Laid04. The late night vibes roll on into moody pads, a squelching synth and some pitched down vocals that are actually a nice touch. On a more granular level, the acoustic hand claps add a very human element to the track. A “dub” version of “Third Hand Smoke” rounds out the package, although it sounds quite different from the A side. Aside from the sublime bass line and some bongo hits, “Third Hand Smoke Dub” is a melancholic comedown from the heights of the original. Laid may have arrived late to the deep house party, but platters like the fantastic “Third Hand Smoke” assure fans they’ve belonged all along.

adamm  on July 16, 2009 at 3:16 PM

Excellent record, it’s a shame they’re not doing digi as well as vinyl. I have to agree, this is possibly the best thing I’ve heard all year. Dial/Laid/Smallville family are releasing nothing but quality.

Andrey  on July 16, 2009 at 6:12 PM

I like the dub version better for its extra-tough bassline. The original sounds like many other tracks but is well nice nevertheless. Rndm should be getting prolific soon – Wakefields from Dial compilation was effin anthemic!


RNDM & John Roberts – Third Hand Smoke « postmodern lifestyle  on August 14, 2009 at 4:33 AM

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