Thursday, 27 November 2008

Starkey – Ephemeral Exhibits

Starkey the Philly based street bass badman is only going to drop his debut album on the excellent electronica label Planet Mu imagine that. If you’re not familiar with Starkey yet pick up your ears and take them over to the dance floor. He makes street bass, which is a kind of mish-mash of all things a little bit dirty and full of bass. It could range from Grime, Dubstep, Bassline, Electro, Hip-Hop and god knows what else in-between. He also likes to make it all sound a bit wonky and Sci-Fi in a kind of B-Movie style.

Ephemeral Exhibits takes us on a journey through space via the gutter, Starkey manages to pull off beautiful melodies and dirty skanked out dance floor hype all at once. The guy has an ear for music, this may be something to do with his classical music training; he has been playing piano since he was about five and has done classical scores. He is defiantly in love with the dirty end of the dance floor spectrum though as this album suggests in bucket loads.

Gutter Music kicks off the album in fine style, it sets the tone perfectly with wonky, growling, wobble bass and punching drum patterns designed to move you. Check out the forthcoming Gutter Music EP on Keysound for some tasty vocal action from renegade Grime don Durty Goodz on this one. The album just features the original instrumental though, but good god its pure hype.

Starkey doesn’t just go for all out dance floor bombs though he also has a mellow side that comes out every now and again in the form of a emotional dance floor weeper, like Marsh. With its hushed pipe blows and half step, dirty south Hip-Hop drums; it has a sad kind of vibe with a spooky edge, Yoda might skank to this on his marshy little planet all on his own in Star Wars. If you listen carefully you can even hear him moaning with an alien pitch bend. More mellow vibes come from the classical string led Time Traveller.

Other highlights on the album are the aggravated bass shakers of Pictures, Dark Ally, Pressure and the hypnotic music box banger Striking Distance; they all have the hyped energy of a madman Stark Bot on a rampage with a digital chain saw with lasers in his eyes.

The final two tracks are kind of special as well: Bang Bang the Witch is Dead, which featured on the Angel EP earlier in the year on Creative Space and the epic closer Spacewalk. Bang Bang… is a wonky bubbler that sounds a little like you are falling over and dancing all at once, which lets face it we have all done at some point. Spacewalk is a classic last track, it has everything you want: happy and euphoric vibes and a bouncy up-tempo rhythm mixed with huge bass and beats, plus that melancholic end of night kind of sound.

Starkey’s Ephemeral Exhibits: Robo Street Bass From Out Of Space.

1 comment:

Steve said...

Check out Starkey's top 10 records of 2008 at

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