A scraping, disheveled snare dribbles through the traditional jungle bass sounds. Warbling, uncompressed synth lines melt under lo-fi beats. Under the bright strobes and aggressive speaker system of the clubs, Scarlet Manifesto might as well be filler during DJ changeovers. But in a home stereo environment, the record takes on a whole other persona. Thanks to artists like Cleveland’s Hanna, who is not just a laptop jockey, but a trained musician, electronic music scenesters might breathe a sigh of relief.
With a bit more rawness than your routine drum n’ bass, Hanna has veered from his normal house and techno productions to vie for a bit more street cred. Although this territory has been explored several times by artists like LTJ Bukem, producers like Hanna should be able to break off a little sumthin’ sumthin’. Not necessarily as hard-edged as implied, the frying-pan snares stir enough noise to get one to notice. But don’t let the tacky keyboard lines of “The Atonement” fool you. This guy’s got talent. But he needs to refine the manic style and structure he adopts before he can become a real contender in this vast arena.
Shadow Records, 26 W. 17th Street #502, New York, NY 10011