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HELLbus, in the space of three tracks, established their credentials with this reviewer and then some. They blew me away with Table Fate (January 2006), Lift (March 2006) and certainly tickled me with their Azoora collab track January One (April 2006) although I think I prefer my HELLbus pure and undiluted. Which is what you get with the splendidly adventurous (and extremely well named) I Miss You Little Black Heart. Best to strap yourself in though, before you start the track off. HELLbus have a known habit of making some propulsive mixtures and IMYLBH has enough for just about anyone.
Joe Cockner (aka HELLbus) likes everything about music, as his list of references/influences will show you. I bet the music will show you more eloquently than any words can though. The one thing I have always appreciated with this artist’s work is the depth of musical detail, and the time and effort involved in making all that detail work stand out in the completed mix. Little Black Heart is a classic example of exactly what it is that makes HELLbus work, at least for this reviewer. He describes this track as ‘dark house/blues influenced ‘ and in some ways, I can see that.
What I see more though is an artist willing to work to tease that beat out, make the damn thing work for you and I will put money on it that the track will NOT seem like six minutes long or anything like it. Again, a sign that the artist has sweated a great deal about getting it right. It has an indecently infectious bassline, along with the aforementioned blues influences (in this case coming from the piano). Stylistically this scores off the scale, as pile driving as the rhythm is, the different elements of the track spin around and capture your attention just as much, neither being able to outdo the other. The two line vocal works surprisingly well too, and it’s use is just sparse enough to keep you wanting to hear more. It’s a rainy day, and I’m glad I’ve got this track to make me feel a whole lot better about it.
For the full backlog of music reviews visit his website RebelRiffs