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Mark E - Shelter

Mark E - Shelter


Ten years and twice as many records have come out since Public Release shared its inaugural 12-inch with the world, and it feels fitting to mark the occasion of its twentieth with new work by a steady partner in crime, Mark E. The English Midlander, known as a peddler of classic house laced with the unexpected—sprinklings of frisky Italo and wiggly disco here, splatterings of taut techno and woozy dub there —made his P.R. debut with 2016’s steamy industrial chugger, Sky Horn, and has also been a frequent remixer for the Northern Californian label.

The 12-inch starts on a bone-chilling note with the titular track, a spartan warm-up that’s a creeping bass on the low end, wispy pads in the mids, and a scratchy looped vox sample on top designed to haunt your dreams. A freaky intro that unnerves as it allures. On the move now, Mark burrows deeper into a hypnotic groove with “Shelter,” a midtempo cyborg cut, half round, warm, organic percussion, half cold-tothe-touch synth chord sustains. The energy and urgency feels like new territory, but the execution is signature Mark E.

On the reverse is a pair of more melodious tunes, the shuffling cyberpunk groove that is “M-54,” then the prickly “Shinkansen,” which has a sputtered and bleary-eyed thrust to make feet jitter and hips shake.

A twist on the man's disciplined studio workmanship that we've come to know—arrow-straight arrangements, celery-crisp drums—that’s spiced with a few pinches of psychedelic, inside-out wickedness, devilishness to keep you wired, buzzing.

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