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Ital Tek
Timeproof Kareem Ghezawi , April 25th, 2023 08:45

Alan Myson has come unstuck in time

It’s ironic that in order to create art you sometimes have to cut yourself off from the wellspring of inspiration that produces it. Out of all the methods of making music, the soundproof vacuum of the modern studio can most feel like a liminal space outside the jurisdiction of everyday reality. According to Ital Tek, the studio also messes with your perception of time, warping its apparent linearity and amplifying that sense of being in a bubble. To him and other producers, that temporary release from routine creates an ideal environment to weave meaning from life experiences that would otherwise go unexamined.

Weaving is a good metaphor for Ital Tek because there is something unquestionably textural about his music. There is a materiality in the way he layers textures like a swordsmith packing atoms as tight as they will go – or the way his guitars rip through tracks as if they were fabric. There is a density and dankness to his music, but also a glow that illuminates its dark corners – especially with the new record, Timeproof.

As opposed to the cinematic impetus of Outland, there is a driving gutsiness to proceedings here. From the crackling static that opens ‘Phantom Pain’ to the grainy modulations of the final track ‘Timeproof’, there is an industrial angst that grinds onward. Throughout, Timeproof pulsates and heaves with an array of surges, pulses, and rumbles that dip, dart, cycle and shred.

Working harmoniously alongside those jagged frequencies, are chasmic spatial arrangements that evoke colossal movements of nature. The lapping melancholy of ‘Cold Motion’ feels like a pan out to restless high seas, while the ambient synths of ‘Heart String’ groan and churn like tired tectonic plates. The industrial and earthy vibes interact well, creating a sense of awe as well as dread.

Timeproof is structurally melodic and emotionally charged like most of Ital’s recent work, but also flecked with ghostly rhythms that dematerialise before realising their potential. In ‘The Mirror’ a breakthrough bassline stomps and shouts in unison with showstopping guitar loops that erupt as if suddenly released from a cage. Likewise, the bass and kicks that grumble and clatter two minutes into ‘Phantom Pain’ hint at a quiet yearning for the club sound system.

Despite the rise and fall of multiple scenes around him and their attempts to pull him into their gravitational orbit, Ital Tek has stayed true to his own shapeshifting star. His fifteen years at Planet Mu have been marked by a remarkable consistency in both the frequency and quality of his releases. In Timeproof there is an overarching feeling that he is on the way to finding a sweet spot between making music that moves the body as well as the mind.