Over the years, the artist known as Dragon has become synonymous with the standard of quality music and performance the USA has to offer. As an artist, there are few in the scene whom are more devoted to their art than him, and Dragon is known from coast to coast as an unceasingly enthusiastic worker and supporter of the scene. His music reflects this, fitting equally well amongst yet not being defined by any one sub-style.
Following his milestone debut album is his second collection of orchestrations and arrangements, "Spirals Of Time" which is as much an evolution as it is a diversification from his earlier works and signature style of driving bass beats. Full of gritty and crunchy leads, driving rhythms and organic background atmospheres; "Spirals of Time" is very much a timeless album that will take up sonic space across the globe and outwards.
: Album Review by Axis Mundi :
Senses-dilating drones and tones preclude the introductory track, offering hints at the driving intensity to follow. Growling rhythms blanket a neatly underlined bass-beat rhythm. The low and midrange elements build and open upwards towards a subtly complex and evolving network of snares and high hats. The kick drum stitches the track superbly, glitching and breaking at all the right moments. Twin bass lines duel in rumbling fictitiousness as the synths trade off in waves of tension building and release.
Appropriately, this track is a notch more ominous and foreboding than its predecessor. From the ground up, the bass line rides a slightly higher frequency, with slight, yet frequent and fresh changes in structure. Plenty of filthy squelches get right in your face with an array of lighter panoramic effects lending capaciousness to the sound. There are several escalating rhythms at work here painting an ego-crushing scene of intergalactic infinity.
Filter sweeps, dissonant metallurgy, and pitch riding resonance are just the beginning. From the first few second forth, the ears are graced and branded with juicy sounds spanning the frequency bandwidth. The mind can really get lost in this one. The track's compelling undertow is just the thing a moonlight dance-floor needs to properly ignite. The leads are cleverly gated and panned to keep each ear busy on its own, leaving your brain and your body multitasking in translation.
Complex mathematical break-beats punctuating a mean bass line snap into place, and airy tubed pads curtain the background with vocal exhalations. Additional vowel filters are hard at work up front. The atmospherics are superb in this piece. Squishy rhythms collude with cyclically oscillating unexplainables for building bodily locomotion. Dragon's synth work in this one provides a sinister, living aura undoubtedly best enjoyed amidst deer filled environments.
Tribalistic percussion and froggy, squelchy rhythms summon otherworldly entities of sound. Primordial kick drums seem to rise from a soup to kiss the sonic spirits above. The result is a biomechanical lovemaking session between the cutting edge of musical evolution and the primitive urges and needs the patterns fulfill. Glitched and pitched mudric wails are full, warm, and up front. Lo-fi walkie-talkie squelches communicate with supersensory complexity with inhuman utterances of supernatural snake riders.
The intro to this track gives a taste of its creator's diversity of style before gradually transitioning into his signature brand of floor shaking beats. There is enough going on in this ten minute odyssey to keep a dancing body moving in moments outside of time. Pitter pattering high hats coincide with gated mantric rhythms. The secret is in the sauce, and in this track, the sauce is in the background, where the thick background of sound is illustrated for the front stage leads to dance upon.
The tempo is tweaked up a notch, which works well with the layers of drones and pads seemly suited for the sunyata experience. Compressed and filtered high hats provide an up-down for the head to bob to, and by that point, it won't be long before the body follows suit. There's an army of sound layers here, each nestled into their own frequency, colliding against each other in their neural advancement. Then, the tension builds in an unexpected way as layer upon layer seems to unravel like threads in a cat's claw before snapping back into an elevated level of excitement.
In the Spirals Of Time
This track is much more aptly described as a grand finale than an outro and encapsulates Dragon's ethic of not giving up early in the final few minutes. Indeed, "Time" is a peak-time blaster, perfect for that time in a mix when you are ready to blast upwards and outwards. Neither linear nor cyclical, Dragon lifts you up, puts you back down, spins you on your toes for a bit, then blows you in a new direction at the moment you've caught your breath. It's easy to ride this one out until the very end. Building synths and sweeps team with energetic percussion until a climatic tempest of psyche suspension.
released March 8, 2011
all rights reserved