In a previous piece about Gourmet about a month ago, we referenced that techno has become a staple of the Cape Town dance music landscape. Sometimes it draws on more Western influences and sometimes it incorporates localised rhythms and syncopation – shifting the atmosphere from the darker elements of European techno to a lighter, warmer, more soulful groove.
This incorporation is not exclusive to South African producers though. In fact, Berlin has become renowned for it and Swedish duo Kiasmos implemented this shift with a devastatingly potent effect which is most notable on their powerful slow-build track ‘Burnt’ off their 2014 eponymous album on Erased Tapes. Closer to home one looks to the likes of Floyd Lavine amongst others, and now, Morning Moves.
Based in Cape Town, 21-year-old producer and DJ, Mickael Michaelides has been on the scene since before leaving high school, delivering his brand of dance-able music in many strains. Until recently, his contribution predominantly took the form of DJing, once as part of the duo, GOLDO in which 1991’s Maxime Alexander was his partner, and more recently as a solo act. Today we’re given a look into where his solo production resides. With a clear and natural feel for electronic percussion and a sound leaning towards melancholic and minimalistic frequencies, ‘Rise’ is the first track in a project based upon a single series where the artwork and music are intently related.
The artwork for this opening single was directed and captured by Dylan Godfrey (of 1991) and Luke Houba.
‘Rise’ opens with a rolling four to the floor kick which pounds away beneath mysterious synths. Slowly the more percussive elements are introduced until the off-beat hi-hat signature to much house and techno enters and the track finds its groove. This is intensified as an arpeggiated synth line joins and gives the track real gravitas. In a similar fashion to the way that symphonies were written, minimalist techno tracks often aim to capture the journey of a composition starting out small and delicate and building towards a climax which then fades out with intricacy. It’s commonplace for techno producers to use up to 7 or 8 minutes to achieve this sensation.
Morning Moves’ greatest achievement for this, his first track in a series of single releases, is capturing that sensation in a more widely palatable 4 minutes.
In a city where techno is so readily available, it is encouraging seeing producers pushing themselves to release original music. If ‘Rise’ is anything to go by, the following instalments of his single series are highly anticipated.