Say what you like about Four Tet but "same ol, same ol" is unlikely to be included. Having put out a rather under-par fourth album in 2005 with Everything Ecstatic and following it with ongoing collaboration with Steve Reid this 4 track EP is the first piece of solo material we've been given for a while, but boy was it worth the wait. Having slightly exhausted his form of cut-up beats and calamitous percussion, he crafts here a more minimal and deep techno formation that hints at conforming but always keeps it's hand hovering dangerously over the sabotage button where the slightest press could send the beat spiraling off into glorious irregularity.
From the opening title track to the closing disco percussion of Wing Body Wing these songs take in deep breaths of space then exude from their every pore sublime ripples of sonic richness. At over 10 minutes in length Ringer is a stunning way to open this EP. The sense of space is achieved by the slow build up and gradual layering of vast swathes of tone and delicate beats that climb upon eachother, higher and higher, until they stand proud, surveying this endless landscape. Ribbons drips with moist lushness while Swimmer rides the wave of a constant, resonating tone then slowly fades in erratic cymbal beats that swirl from one ear to the next with anarchic confidence. Wing Body Wing pulls focus on Hebdon's trademark recuttings of jazz breaks and brings them into line with a deep heartbeat and almost african rhythms. Gentle melody tip-toes around this rhythm making way for driving bursts of synthesizer.
This EP heralds a very promising direction for Hebdon. This is techno made with an afrobeat/krautrock sensibility and it may be minimal but this artists grasp of detail is very much present. Every moment of this record has been viewed under a microscope but the result sounds effortless and joyous. It beats with an unstoppable pulse and shields its eyes from the glaring sunshine ahead as it looks forward to the expanding horizon it has just created.