Si Begg

The Director's Cut

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Si Begg's credentials as one of the most distinctive producers in techno are untested from the evidence of Director's Cut, and it includes some of his best tracks since the five-years-gone First Class Ticket to Telos LP (released as Buckfunk 3000). Even while spinning a hooky track capable of succeeding in a 30-second advert or a video-game sountrack, Begg is able to coax the most amazing sounds -- electric pianos that sound like none you've heard before, distorted basslines with more grit than any you've heard, multiple point-precise effects lines working in tandem like gears in a Tag-Heuer. Perhaps realizing that it always helps to dip a toe in different waters, he also uses some great collaborators: two-thirds of New Flesh is more than enough to pull off an excellent British hip-hop joint on "Moveup," Miss MC lends some ragga authority to the twisted dancehall of "Buss," and Chicago jacking bod DJ Rush is heard (on the stark house track "Body") with not his turntables or his sampler but his party-time vocals. Of course, Si Begg doesn't need a guest feature to brilliantly reference a left-field style of dance music; "Technology" is a high-stepping production with clipped percussion and an unmissable melody that would slot perfectly into a set of 2-step dance. Nearly every artist on Mute can crossover to the electro scene without even thinking about it (or, as happens more often, thinking too much), but it's the rare figure who can also hit the street level of an up-to-the-minute style like garage rap -- the preserve of crews like So Solid Crew and Dizzee Rascal -- with a mere twist on his trademarked sound.

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