Originally published on Ibiza Spotlight.
Whilst Maceo Plex continues to ride the wave of success which exploded for him in 2011, Texan born Eric Estornel also stokes the fires of his more mature alter ego, Maetrik, releasing the Unleash the Beast EP on his Ellum Audio imprint.
The Poem, on the A-side, instantly creates an intriguing atmosphere. Samples of Reggae Poet Mutaburuka echo around the dark chamber that cyclic synth patterns have created; a weighty bass struts along the bottom end of the track like an arrogant shadow, never really getting anywhere and never really meaning to.
Over on the B-side, a marginally more up-tempo Walk Alone (Maceo Plex Revenge) continues the theme of solitary saunter, but with more forward impetus than The Poem. Enjoyable but forgettable, this is the slightly weaker moment of the EP - the plastic cheese between gourmet bread, if you will (best not to).
The final offering, To The Top, dances around the edges of quiet hysteria; the dissonant notes of a chemical-heavy synth ricocheting about the inside of my head remind me of that cheeky post-5am moment when you look around the club furtively wondering if you might be losing your mind just a little bit . . .
These tracks aren’t exactly accessible. In fact they’re downright antisocial. They won’t give you instant gratification or compel your shoulders into grooving. They are dark, brooding and slightly unsettling – and it’s sexy as hell. Unleash the Beast is not a groundbreaking EP – these are sounds we’re very familiar with from Estornel - nor does it fall into the quick release ‘banger’ category, designed to ‘kill’ the dance floor. Rather, it creates a dark, timeless space in which to lose or discover yourself, as you see fit. Mutaburuku says it best in The Poem:
“This poem shall say nothing new. This poem shall speak of time unlimited; time undefined…”
Turn off the lights and get introspective.