Cooly G is back. The South London producer / vocalist’s latest project from the Hyperdub lab is a playfully dark and welcome development of the unique sound found on her 2012 debut album, Playin’ Me. She continues to draw inspiration from the more sinister (and probably sweatier) corners of London’s underground nightclub circuit and confidently finds a home in the delicate balance between cool detachment and club euphoria.
Opening track “Hold Me” begins the club adventure with sensual jazz vocals over ritualistic drum patterns. The track is as casually hypnotic as it is euphoric; the narrative is simple and urgent. Haunting vocal samples bring the song away from the bar and into the heart of the nightclub while retaining the familiar hope for romantic fulfilment.
“Oi Dirty” (feat. Scratcha DVA) is where things really kick off as Cooly G and guest Scratcha DVA ricochet between lightly percussive bounces, crisp cymbals and violent, dramatic strings. Cooly G’s ability to move from seductive club siren to confrontational battle MC is a reminder of the volatile emotional setting of the nightclub as a social space. Dirt, sweat and hedonism become ingredients for the most instantly thrilling song on the EP.
The final track “Molly” builds on the tension and Cooly G’s attraction to tribal percussion and manic dancefloor energy is shown through her technically brilliant manipulation of depth; abrasive and harsh electronics are given a lush and warm 4/4 house backdrop to create a chilling yet hugely satisfying atmosphere. ‘Hold Me’ is a cohesive statement on the full spectrum of the club experience; euphoria dripping with darkness.
‘Hold Me’ is out 27th Jan on Hyperdub Records. Pre-order it here.
Words: Kareem Reid