This is Montreal-based Deadbeat aka Scott Monteith's fourth full-length release on the ~scape label. Since the release of his previous outing, New World Observer in March 2005, Monteith has spent the vast majority of his time on the road, honing his skills as a master craftsman of genre defying electronic dance music. Though fans of Monteith's previous ~scape full lengths might find it difficult to envision his music as the soundtrack to a rollicking dance floor, Journeyman's Annual is the first to showcase an updated version of the Deadbeat sound that has quietly been overtaking his more meditative work over the last year and-a-half. This is modern bass music of an entirely unique sort, crafted with the intention of moving asses as much as stimulating minds. Easily the closest stylistically to his previous work for ~scape, the opening two tracks employ minimal techno's careful ruminations on endlessly repeating groove structures, while sitting comfortably in dubstep's doom-filled, 140 bpm pocket. For the album opener, Monteith enlists the aid of violinist and fellow Montrealer Sophie Trudeau (ex-GY!BE, A Silver Mount Zion) to craft what is potentially the darkest song in his entire catalog. "Melbourne Round Midnight" combines a lurching funeral organ line with vaporous horns and a thunderous one note bass drop to create a chugging dub monster. Along with Trudeau's string arrangements, Monteith also calls upon vocalists to expand the album's sonic palette. This record also features Bristol-based Bubbz, who spits a fiery tale on "Refund Me." "Deep In Country" marks the triumphant return of Moral Undulations, whose bad man vocal stylings provide a rhythmic assault. "Gimme A Little Slack" features Montreal's DJ Jah Cutta, and the dynamic duo craft a piece of pure heavyweight bashment, filled with searing percussion, impossibly low bass, and a vocal hook that will stay in your head for days. Finally, as a bonus to this already fine set, this record includes Deadbeat's much sought-after remix of Saul Williams' "Black Stacey" from 2005. Previously only available on an incredibly rare promo-only 12", the track has been a trademark finisher of Deadbeat live sets and has driven the floor into a frenzy each and every time. Easily his most diverse album to date, Journeyman's Annual is a far reaching account of new creative connections and rhythmic inspirations drawn from the four corners of the globe, and a spectacular sign of things to come from one of electronic music's premier low-end prophets.
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