Record of the Week: Gantz – Dying on Acid

Deep Medi are bringing us headlong into the new year with some of the most leftfield electronica they’ve released to date. Label regular and dubstep eccentric Gantz leaves genre conventions behind with four tracks of dubwise sample-based psychedelia that brings to mind the hallucinatory hip-hop of Brainfeeder and Leaving Records, along with artists like Botany or Teebs, far more than the spacious bass-meditations usually associated with the Deep Medi camp.

Opener ‘Fugazi’ is built around a dusty harp arpeggio that winds itself around an obscured vocal and a clattering beat reminiscent of Fis’ ‘DMT Usher‘. Gantz’ penchant for organic, textured sounds works in his favour – the beat, crafted from muffled, woody knocks and scrapes, sounds warm and human alongside the vocal and the strings. The track ends with an oft-memed Dark Souls sample that leads into the heady darkness of ‘Shivy’, featuring Bristol rapper Dedw8. This one’s a little less out-there, but hits home all the same, Gantz providing enough murky weirdness to carry the lukewarm rhymes. Rider Shafique brings far more heat than Dedw8 on closer ‘Sharkeyes’, laying down his expressive, syncopated flow over a murky K-hole of an instrumental.

‘Dying on Acid’ is a bold choice for the title track, proving itself to be the strangest and most minimal cut from the EP and providing enough psychotropic dread to live up to its name. Everything about this one is gloriously weird and unconventional, from the tripart structure, to the hallucinogenic sound design, to the shuffling, seasick beat. The 99th release on Deep Medi, this one stands out for all the right reasons, as one of the most unique and imaginative to date.

Dying on Acid is out now on Deep Medi. Buy it here.

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