Ray Valioso: Einladung
Real Soon

Agnès names his debut Ray Valioso 12-inch Einladung, German for ‘Invitation,' and the disc is certainly inviting enough. On three pounding cuts, Agnès, who operates the Geneva-based label Sthlmaudio Recordings and co-runs the new label venture 60Sec, enlivens his passion for deep minimal techno with tech-house swing and dubby production effects. A classic slow builder, “Get The Strings?” opens side one with syncopated metallic percussion accents rising over a heavy bottom end. The Swiss producer twists and stretches the percussion sounds into elongated shudders before a high-pitched string tone similarly moves to the forefront, signaling the tune's metamorphosis into an insistently lurching, dub-funk pulse shadowed by faint vocal fragments. The B side hews to a more purely minimal template: “Keep It” opens promisingly with a joyously swinging strut and owl-like garble but adheres a little bit too much to its one-note groove, while male and female voice exclamations ricochet over a pounding, dubbed-out tech-house pulse in the more satisfying “ Rhodes Island .” A classy tech-house trio.

December 2006