Current Value is one of those artists who, if he doesn’t release for a while, we as a scene collectively feel that absence. In a year where Noisia are taking their final bow in tours and releases, we hoped the German super-producer wasn’t also toying with the idea of taking an extended break. Luckily, not only is he back but he’s exploring new labels and sounds, praise the D&B Gods. After a remix of his own title track on Zombie Cats’ Mutation Remixed album and a collab track with Rene LaVice of all people on the Exposed 001 compilation on Device of all places, CV’s new solo multi-track is dropping this week on…Korsakov Music?
Now that you know we weren’t kidding about Mr. Value playing around with new formats and A&R values, let’s take a look at the Runway EP, due out this Friday. How do you even A&R someone like CV anyway? Let’s just assume the Korsakov crew didn’t give him a whole lot of notes, because this EP is just as technically flawless as it is completely mad and glitched out. In fact, label manager Elmar AL/SO Van Eijk had pretty much the same reaction as we do:
“This was a crazy chat we had. He completed and sent me three tracks in one evening, and most of the A&R conversation was just me going ‘…how?’ He started and completed them that evening; not as if he just had them laying around. His response? ‘Yeah I have a fast laptop.’ I don’t care if he’s on the NASA server. That’s not normal.”
Runway opens with an excellent case in point in the form of the title track. Absolutely chaotic synths are just barely tethered to a subtle but none too minimal beat which, when flipped to 174 techno somehow becomes even more chaotic. Said beat is holding on for dear life to keep this track from becoming fully experimental and it manages to just barely succeed in staying danceable. From there, “Insistence” and “The Herd” become a bit more recognizably D&B with lashings or ravey neuro, but we’re back to organized chaos with “Wheelspin,” whose high-pitched, circular synths are somehow even faster than the snares. How even…?
The closing track and our premiere today, “Machine” is a melding of the glitchy chaos and more classic D&B that defines this EP…sort of. Heavier on the glitch than “Runway” or “Wheelspin” with interstitial radio pop sounds and full of fast, chugging snares, “Machine” also has a lovely melodic tinge to it. The composition, while complex to say the least, is almost orchestral in the way the layers are set up so even though the individual elements are experimental and chaotic, it doesn’t feel that way. The melodic vocals and ambient sound design ground the track. It’s a fitting landing on this sonic Runway.
With these recent Device and Korsakov Music releases under his belt, it’s anyone’s guess where Current Value will head next but it matters naught. Wherever he goes, he continues to leave a trail of masterful production and mind-expanding sound experimentation in his wake. It’s not a typical sound for Korsakov Music but they’ve just upped their cool points by about a million releasing him. Who in their right mind would say no to this legend? Please never leave us again, Mr. Value..
Runway drops tomorrow, December 3 on Korsakov Music. Pre-order or pre-save here.