NOTES: “PLUNGE INTO DARKNESS” BY SHCURO

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Originally published in Portuguese on VICE Portugal

The way Shcuro showcases his music has been through some fast mutation over the last couple of years. The producer from Lisbon, Portugal, went through a road of dub rhythms with his Distant Shore EP (2012) and the Rastronaut’s Legba (2013) remix, deviated for the interior of tech-house – Ignis Fatuus (2013) and JYGB’s Sun Soaked / Money (2013) remix – and turned sharply, without any tragedies within, in 2014 with the acidic techno EP Plunge Into Darkness.

Considering his stylistics shifts, Shcuro has a consistent identity and versatility. He whom also produced an astonishing sound forA.M.O.R’s experimental LP, and keeping with Honey the project ERVADOCE. Among all his music, there’s always a grey and deeply dark touch, from either a more assertive knob or a simple presence hidden throughout the more audible tones. “Plunge Into Darkness” is Shcuro releasing the murk that always roamed his spirit, with full-rotation beats, beefy industrial sounds and screaming synths. A throughly acidic trip for a night ending in an emotional debacle. “Agremi Somnia” keeps the industrial roots, the aesthetic deepness and borrows from trance the verve of piercing synthesisers.

Plunge Into Darkness doesn’t even sin for having just 15 minutes of running time, as it seems to be an eternity, given that we jump inside an endless dark pit. The expectation is that Shcuro remains in the genre, as he seems just right for it.

Release Date: January 2014 | Label: Con+ainer

NOTES: “GOVERNMENT PLATES” BY DEATH GRIPS

Originally published in Portuguese on VICE Portugal

A glass pops and shatters. It’s followed by a sharp, lugged, monochromatic sound, which penetrates the eardrums and pursues a paranoid, distressing and prophetic scream. An electrifying synthesiser that crosses the bones yanks out and the agony proceeds, always in the dark. The intro of Government PlatesDeath Grips’ latest album, unveils a loosen straitjacket schizophrenia in a scabrous mental solitary confinement.

Stefan Burnett aka MC Ride, the lead singer, remains truthful to his thing: psychopath (“Pressin down the pillow ‘til I can’t hear yo breath, for no reason”), violent, frenzied and nihilist. The difference is that he’s closed in on itself. If in No Love Deep Web – their first release under their own label, Third Worlds – the synths were clearer and Stefan Burnett pulled the audience to his inner world,Government Plates rolls in a cloistered rhythm and this rapper seems to be as fucked as ever. In every beat and synth punch there’s a demented struggle to release himself from the system that sucked him in (“Government plates / On location / I’m a corporation / Fuck location”) and from the demons corroding him and from which he releases himself through drugs. (“Can’t wait to fuck my brain. All I need to forget is today”). Burnett isolated himself in an inner battle that corrupts him and he’s exposing it to the world.

The smothering drums and the experimental keys of Death Grips follow their own natural gene, although there are purgatory moments in Government Plates, where neither the sound is as psychedelic or clairvoyant. But it is an album that always steers in line with a inherent heady darkness for a hardcore hip-hop.

Release Date: November 2013 | Label: Third Worlds | Official Download: Click Here

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FRONTSIDE GARDENS

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Photography: Ivan Maslarov

 Riding the same skate parks swarming the city may be annoying after some time. The ramps show no new fun, the grids look easy enough to pull new tricks. Albeit in Hackney Wick, the Frontside Gardens is ready to be explored.

Designed and erected by Frontside’s owner, Andrew Willis, the sustainable park is open since September last year, located in an old warehouse site revived from death with Olympics leftover materials. Willis, a Civil Engineer with special affect for sustainable designs, projected the park for a competition and built it to last a few months. Until now, the Gardens are still in place. “I’m looking to start a company to fight for the area, and fight for the belief that got the project started, the idea that it’s not for profit.”

The site is a few miles off Victoria’s skate park, adding more options to the area and projecting the growth of the sport. Willis is applying for licensing for the site to keep up and hopes to turn it into a youth centre within a year. “It’s more like a reclamation, which is how I want to keep it. I just want to carve something that will make it work in the future.”

Website: Frontside