Mutations I: Death, Taxes & Hanger Vinyl, EP
Mutations II: Delicious Intent Vinyl, EP
Available: September 2, 2022
Hanger plays to Aquarian’s strengths as a solo artist, serving as a strong reintroduction to the club music that first won him praise. Notibly, Aphex Twin recently played multiple Aquarian productions made with Deapmash as AQXDM in DJ sets across the globe. The title track kicks off the A side, and it’s a heavenly slice of juddering jungle pressure. Even better is the alien electro of ‘Sam Handwhich’ on the B side with its pulsating synth lines adding a marvelous new edge to his tried and true formula.
Berlin’s Aquarian lives right in the sweet spot between humour and fury with his productions. With his Hanger Management edits label (compilation titles include Don’t Look Back in Hanger and Holiday HAM, among others) and his love of sandwich puns of the pork variety, this is someone who clearly knows their way around a deli. Do not mistake that whimsy as a cover for a lack of prowess: Aquarian is among the finest at dismantling a drum break into ecstatic rave gold, as evidenced once again by his debut EP for Amsterdam’s Dekmantel label entitled, Death, Taxes & Hanger.
Aquarian brings out the boxing gloves for the second part of his Mutations EP series, punching in some incredibly visceral beats with piledriving house rhythms and twisted breakcore. Following his 2020 debut album The Snake That Eats Itself, his first offerings for Dekmantel give a more restless and maximalist energy. The broiling bassline on ‘Delicious Intent’ becomes fried with high energy techno stabs, a dazzling jazz break of sax and drum fireworks explodes ‘A Familiar Place’, and the mercurial ‘If U Wanna’ is tightly packed with ephemeral clips of scrambling beats and contorted strobes of guitar flashes.