REVIEW Red Axes ‘Kalacol EP’ [Life And Death]

Red Axes have delved into the underground music scene headfirst, and they seem to have hit the ground running. Constantly sharing the stage big boss, Dj Tennis, and scheduled to play at Innervisions and Life and Death’s love-child party, Rakastella in December, the Israeli duo must be doing something right. 

A percussion heavy, already underground dance music anthem, ‘Kalacol’ is a strong start to an even stronger EP. It begins with what we will soon learn is an incredibly catchy rhythmic pattern, one that continues on to be the backbone of the track. After an appropriate length intro without a bass line, it enters and we can hardly remember a time where it wasn’t heard. Chugging away, onward and upward, onward and downward, it quickly steals the show. Female vocals, futuristic synth tones, and crisp samples all convene together to create the most perfect backdrop for the star-striking bass line, putting the finishing touches on Red Axe’s latest hit. 

‘Vego Gam’ has a much cheekier, more disco-esque feel, paying homage to their funky roots. It may be void of vocals, but it isn’t void of emotion and the track’s cool guitar solo emphasizes this, while once again employing a wide range of percussion instruments and samples that help keep the rigidity of rhythm yet the relaxed state of improvisation. The inclusion of synth-pop sounding key pads in the high register adds the finishing touches to this genre-bending track. 

Keeping the same hard-hitting themes as the previous tracks, ‘Round’ also has a mind of it’s own. Low-toned distorted vocals repeat, coupled with rounded bass notes, creating a very ritual-like rhythm. Almost fully mesmerized by the cycle of beats, two elements bring us back, the cowbell and the rising-pitched, ultra-altered guitar. Proclaimed by the group as ‘future Goa electronics’, the listener can’t help but hear these elements.

‘Sami’, the EP’s closing track, is perhaps the most obscure, which Red Axes has described as a ‘shamanic tribal trip’. At a slightly slower tempo, with muted percussion and downward tapered vocals, the track is certainly a trip. 

Red Axes ‘Kalacol EP’ was released on October 6th, 2017 on Life and Death. (Tess)