George Kostopoulos – Unnoticed
(Slope Point, 2021-10-29)
Some consider that Earth is just a meaningless dot in the universe, while others may question why a dub techno release is reviewed in a magazine dedicated to hypnotic techno…
We see two reasons…
Firstly, we support the idea of hypnotic techno being a subgenre of underground techno, characterised by constant repetition and inherited from Detroit’s minimalism, but we also admit that it can rather be seen as “an aesthetic” – repetitive – which can be found in any music genre, including in dub techno.
Secondly, dub techno is often considered as a “close cousin” of atmospheric hypnotic techno in particular, for sharing common roots found in ambient & chill-out music, as well as in specific pioneering projects such as Basic Channel. Furthermore, many artists of the current hypnotic techno scene, such as Luigi Tozzi or Markus Masuhr, originally come from the dub techno scene and/or are highly influenced by it: Tozzi’s work on Non Series is particularly evocative in that sense for instance, while Masuhr enjoys separating his dub techno work in labels such as Slope Point, with his hypnotic techno work in his own label Pragmat.
Slope Point, based in Barcelona and born in 2019, is entirely dedicated to the dub techno sound. The label has succeeded to bring the ageing sub-genre to modernity, however in a slightly different way than Well Street Records, which has been pursuing the same “modernisation objective”. While Well Street Records has refreshed dub techno by merging it with the UK bass, Slope Point plays the deep card and the subtle percussions to bring the sound in 2021. “Unnoticed” by George Kostopoulos is particularly representative of such an elegant sound signature.
The Greek artist, both as a producer and DJ, has clearly chosen the dub techno path, even if he goes a bit more housey in rare releases, such as in his EP “Elephants“. Kostopoulos only produces since 2019, but already has a massive album in his discography, Taaffeite, where he deploys his undeniable talent in twelve mystical dubby tracks. For the rest, he released some EPs and some tracks in VAs, and can apparently only be followed on Soundcloud, for comprehensive access to his music.
“Unnoticed” shows its colour straight from the opening track: deep, dark, with roaring electronic laments. Evoking DeepChord’s US school, Kostopoulos creates an interesting balance between the light and the dark layers along his four tracks, on his way to bringing the sound into charismatic dimensions. Kobus & CO2MIC contributed their know-how to the project in a very humble way, by departing a bit from their beaten tracks to adapt their sound to Kostopoulos’ journey.
Mesmerising, subtle, with well-designed beats, the release can only come up with many superlatives, making Kostopoulos a serious artist to follow in the dub techno sub-music.
WRITING BY: CEDRIC FINKBEINER | 8 NOVEMBER 2021