Review: PERA STA ORI – Iskios EP (Yellow Machines)

Four hybrid compositions break Yellow Machines’ five year silence.

It’s been 5 years since Yellow Machines last released an EP. A label known for exploring the full electronic spectrum, dropping multifaceted releases combining tranquil IDM bleeps with rough-and-tumble jungle, the latest melodic offering has made the wait worthwhile. Having published music from artists such as 214, Jerome Hill and Dexorcist, the label has served as a platform for innovation and free-thinking, rarely sticking to a solitary genre. With Jude Greenaway, better known as ScanOne, as the brains behind the operation, this should come as no surprise. A veteran producer and DJ, Greenaway has been in the game for some 20 years, hybridising elements of hardcore, bleep, IDM and electro into sonic sorcery.

Breaking the Yellow Machines silence is Thessaloniki’s George Kontogiannidis under the alias PERA STA ORI (Beyond The Mountains), serving up a four-track EP of diverse character. The Greek producer has music coursing through his veins: having studied Music Technology in his motherland, Kontogiannidis has composed for over a decade, founded the label Numb Capsule Records, and is a part of the cooradio and BreakAPlate online magazine teams. Akin to his diverse contributions to music, Kontogiannidis’ output bears a similarly unrestricted and widespread complexion. Showcasing a fine ear and disregarding for genre conformity, both of PERA STA ORI’s original tracks feature characteristics of techno, breaks, IDM and Sheffield-referencing bleeps.

Opening track Kato Apo To Dentro’s quick tempo, snappy percussion and thick, fuzzy texture move the track along with bounding energy. Wonky, distorted vocals partner chiming bleeps to bewilder, juxtaposing against the focused hits of the snare and robust pulses from the kick. The track clearly references breaks and bleeps, journeying along through shapeshifting breakdowns, stripped back sections and obvious rhythm. It’s a tough ask to summarise and describe the track due to its busyness and dynamic nature. ScanOne’s remix of Gone Beautiful takes the other spot on the A-side, and sees the label boss’ masterful technique in full force. Another uptempo number, vaporous bleeps chime atop organic snare hits and clean cymbalwork, with soft pads breathing yet more life into the track. Humming basslines swoop beneath choppy, spirited breaks, making this a track for the floor.

On the flip side, New York’s Brenecki provides another rework of Gone Beautiful with his signature rave-tinged electronics. Glitchy breaks and pulsating synths shake with force, before undulating keys add a euphoric tone to the track. When compared to the original and ScanOne’s flip, it’s almost as though three original tracks have been produced. Rounding off the EP is the source of these two remixes: PERA STA ORI’s Gone Beautiful. Rampant broken percussion marries with shimmering hats and broad, strung out bass to produce another head-spinning dimension to the EP.

YM015_PERA STA ORI_ISKIOS EP is out now. 

Buy it here.

Words: Jens Berring

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