Whilst ‘Interval One’ is his first release on Berlin label Leisure System, Will Ward is no newcomer to the scene. The producer is already known as a member of electronic trio Circle Traps with friends and Portico members Duncan Bellamy and Jack Wyllie. Born in Cambridge, but now based in London, Will spent his teenage years making music with Duncan and aspiring to become a Jungle DJ. Duncan went on to meet Jack at university, and the three formed Circle Traps in 2010, releasing their acclaimed debut EP on Subeena’s OPIT imprint the following year. Whilst Duncan and Jack continue to make music and tour as Portico, Will makes a regular appearance as host of Radar Radio’s Gravy Show, a popular London broadcast showcasing emerging electronic music.
Balancing high-octane dancefloor rhythms with tranquil, trance-inducing melodies, Will’s solo work sits neatly between “pumping house and windswept techno”. The EP retains some of Circle Trap’s experimental style – its tracks a haze of distortions and barely-there vocal samples – but trades down-tempo, off-kilter rhythms for a steady progressive House groove.
On Hyp mix duty this week, Will treats us to a range of club focussed numbers, with a nod to the noisier side of House and Techno. Starting with an intergalactic time stretched version of Donna Summer’s legendary ‘I Feel Love’, we’re then brazenly dropped into the brutal, industrial clattering of ‘Vitriol’ from Romanian Techno figure Cosmin TRG. A number of Ward’s unreleased tracks make their way into the mix alongside dirty House cuts like ‘Feelings’ from charismatic LA producer and L.I.E.S. affiliate Delroy Edwards. Rounding off the mix of influences is a sublime Will Ward edit of 90s Ibiza anthem ‘Your Not Alone’ by Trip-Hop group Olive; the celestial chords of the original are looped and transformed into a strangely disconcerting piece with smatterings of static noise and alarm sounds.