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White Noise: Marquis Hawkes - Sex, Drugs & House

Monday, 25 November 2013

Marquis Hawkes - Sex, Drugs & House

Label: Dixon Avenue Basement Jams

After emerging last year on the ace Cabrini Green EP, which featured WN favourite Sealion Woman, Marquis Hawkes has proven an enthralling producer over his three releases on DABJ. His slow house / acid jams are rich analogue workouts which never fail to hit the sweet spot, and with Sex, Drugs & House Mr Hawkes has let loose his best offering to date. Big Papa is a lush slice ruled over by a bumping bassline, keeping the mood light with subdued keys and concise drum programming which gives the groove exactly what it needs and not a kickdrum more.

The temperature begins to rise on the oddball anthem Get Yo Ass Off My Grass, where metallic percussion leads elastic acid twangs à la Gerd in an energetic arrangement. Of course, it’s the titular vocal which takes centre stage, either sampled or pitched up to an earworm falsetto, looped in ghetto-tech style and miraculously never wearing thin. Acid Snowfall wears its 303s less surreptitiously, its acid line evolving fluidly over a crushed vocal bark and stripped percussion sure to get clubbers into the heads-down zone. After a trio of winners, closing number Hold On proves the EP’s biggest surprise, its rugged beat intriguingly counterpointed with a genuinely emotive vocal which runs the course of the whole track, astutely pitched down and dubbed out to create a real contrast with the taut snares. With his latest Marquis Hawkes proves himself amongst the ranks of the best producers, those who can try something different on every single tune and nail it every time.


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