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Japanese eccentric/genius Kouhei Matsunaga (AKA NHK yx Koyxen) is back with his anarchistic, deconstructivist, dancefloor acid techno with this 26-minute, five-track debut wig out for London based Diagonal records. ‘Hallucinogenic Doom Steppy Verbs’ is an experiment in unfettered creativity and technical prowess that unravels the roots of electronic techno, crushing the aesthetic and rebuilding it into an unstable, degenerate, hardcore madness.

12" £8.49 DIAG017

12" on Diagonal feat. XiX.

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Hallucinogenic Doom Steppy Verbs by NHK yx Koyxen
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9/10 Ant Staff review, 13 February 2015

Kouhei Matsunaga pops up on Diagonal with this amusingly titled 5 track EP. Opening up with the skittering drums and warped backwards sounds of the brief ‘218’ making way for the epic eleven and a half minutes that is ‘845’. Kouhei’s productions have been gradually veering more and more towards the dancefloor in recent years and here he’s in full on wreck a club/ warehouse mode with this subs driven bum shaker. The bassline feels like its in a constant state of flux with an effervescent fizz, joined by some proper squelchy frantically bubbling and squirming acid. The overall effect like raving in a glass of Alka Seltzer. Halfway through the bassline changes gear again, becoming lower and heavier while the steppy breakbeat pretty much gets left alone for the most part of the track. No doubt Powell has been rinsing this at those “Raves” I read about in The Sun in 1988.

‘932’ features some vocal action from XiX and sounds like a deranged Drexciya circa ‘Bubble Metropolis’ then goes full on 4/4 pounding wonky techno Subhead style if anyone remembers those guys? The snaking acid feels like it has a life of its own making me imagine a plague of tiny fluorescent pink robotic ants pouring from the speakers and wriggling around in my underpants. ‘234’ is pretty disorientating with collapsing drums and mangled techno synth riffs.

‘953’ also features muted vocals from XiX, giving it the old ‘Going Out Of My Mind’ so when you hear it on drugs you’ll think it’s actually not his voice but one inside your head, after briefly questioning your sanity the bassline will soon make you forget your brief moment of psychosis and you will embrace the pleasures of dancing as every cell in your body becomes liberated from it’s human prison as you visualize yourself raving on top of the millenium falcon as Kouhei hovers inside a Gundam Mecha mobile suit blasting his skewed vision of techno from his laptop. A refreshing antidote to a lot of current techno’s dystopian direction and the Berlin techno goth epidemic.


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