Throwing hi-def sounds into three-dimensional space and rendering bass in increasingly uncharted waters, Walton arrives on Sneaker Social Club with a future-leaning EP of dance wreckers for the tough crowd.
Even his earliest releases were pushing things forwards as the weightless grime thing gathered momentum, but Walton always swerved the rest of the pack and simply approached grime-rooted club music with his own experimental instincts. His mammoth body of work takes in totemic labels like Tectonic, Hyperdub and Ilian Tape, and as time has passed and music has moved on from micro scenes to a generically fluid individuality, so Walton has grown as an artist. Recent drops including his Maisie By The Sea album have started to embrace more experimental spaces alongside his familiar twist on grime, and this mini-LP for Sneaker continues that level of progression.
On the A side, long time Walton fans will be more than happy with the intensity of ‘PJD’, which is as fierce as we’ve heard Walton go to date. As ever, his beats are never a simple matter, with every hit embellished with needlepoint sound design. The sound zips around the stereo field, but never at the expense of the track’s impact. Still, there’s space for other vibes too, as on the deep, sweeping pads and electronica twitch of ‘Quasar’.
By and large, Walton keeps the pressure up. ‘Rush’ is a bludgeoning instrument and ‘Dread’ teases with a jerky, stop-start demeanour which lands heavy blows when it kicks in. But shorter cuts ‘Detach’ and ‘Shots Fired’ also allow space for other aspects of Walton’s craft to come through. It’s these cuts which add to the overall listening experience and show just how much he ahs to offer as a producer.