Pocket 808 :: released August 19 2010
The atmosphere shifts and tilts on end, sonic textures rattle in place and machines whir to life with the spark of buzzing electronics. In just under a minute, you’re welcomed into the world of Pocket 808 and their album Proximo. Get strapped in, this is going to be a trip.
The brains behind that grand opening – the skewed instrumental track Prefix - and the rest of the twists and turns hidden throughout Proximo are Sameer Sengupta and Ken Cloud, the Australian explorers of all things sonic that first struck gold together after teaming up as Poxymusic at the turn of the millennium, bringing every kid in club land to their knees as DJs began to wear their tunes out. But this isn’t about that past project, this is about Pocket 808, an entirely new beast that’s finally been uncaged by its creators.
Painstakingly constructed and perfected over an epic two year stretch in a dark Sydney studio, Proximo finds the Pocket 808 masterminds flexing their electronic muscles and relishing the freedom to create something that not only sounds and feels evolved from what they had been doing before, but also something that’s different to what others are doing now.
Having developed their impressive chops working on the Australian dance and production scenes for countless years now it’s a no brainer to think that Messrs. Sengupta and Cloud would have famous friends knocking down their door to collaborate with the pair, and indeed Proximo is overstuffed with guest stars, including rockers Nathan Hudson and Phil Jamieson crossing over on belting singles Ghostship and the machine-meets-man burner Monster. Elsewhere She Bites finds Armand Van Helden regular Nicole Lombardi roaring against the big electro production, Jamie Lloyd adds his hushed croon to the tech’d out tracks Nothing More and Better Man and even Claude Von Stroke chimes in with his hazy reworking of Warpaint. Another standout is the stunning wonky- bass ride, Surfaces, sealed with the wild words of the late Ali Omar, Sydney’s sorely missed dub stalwart.
As impressive as their digital rolodex is however, in the end Proximo is Pocket 808’s moment, one which the pair of studio big guns have been building towards for years now. Fittingly, Pocket 808 don’t waste a second of it.
Now available at all good record stores, and through iTunes.