Reason Stendec – Impulsion EP

Reason Stendec – Impulsion EP

Whilst his main latter-day musical ensemble – the analogue-electronica evangelising Metamono – appears to be on hiatus, Jono Podmore (also of Kumo and Cyclopean) still has a few newer projects on the boil to keep himself from being idle.  Alongside campaigning to publish a biography-meets-drumming-theory-manual to honour the late great Can drummer and former collaborator Jaki Liebezeit, Podmore has also reignited his long-dormant Psychomat label to bring some off-piste sonic produce into the world.  The second release in this new run of releases from the imprint, which originally operated in the late-‘90s, appears in the form of this new 12” EP from Reason Stendec.

With Podmore generating all the music and the previously unknown alias-toting Reason Stendec on vocals, in a curious way this 3-tracker reconnects with and as well as extends upon certain tropes from the original era in which the Psychomat label operated.  Recalling the globalist explorations of Jah Wobble, Natasha Atlas and Transglobal Underground as well as the remix culture of twenty years ago, the Implusion EP is a flashback of sorts – but one that doesn’t feel clunkily retro.

Although only featuring three versions of the titular track, each incarnation is significantly different enough to warrant some turntable time.  Hence, the de facto original version finds Stendec intoning with deep prowling gravitas in English, French, German and Hindi whilst Podmore wraps around an array of samples, dubby bass-lines, Persian drones, pulsing programmed drum layers and twinkling percussion to conjure up a charismatic cinematic atmosphere.  Perhaps less imposing, yet still enigma-encoded, is the more deconstructed “Vocal Mix” version, which cloaks the original in murmured Kraftwerk-like mechanical voice mutations and hissing electronics.  Proceedings close on the more drastically reworked “Kumo Remix”, wherein vocals are virtually scrubbed out to allow Podmore to stretch and remould the track into an unashamedly extended burbling technoscape, which brings in shades of his most beats-laden moments with Metamono as well as the rebuilding techniques of serial remixer Andrew Weatherall.

Whilst this debut Reason Stendec extended-player isn’t the most radical thing you’ll hear in 2017, its assured backward glances and non-conformist cross-references hold some alluring promise for the future.

Pyschomat Records