In Vancouver, BC, there are few names that will elicit as much reverence as Michael Red’s. He is a true pioneer in the underground dance realm, his journey taking him from Halifax to Vancouver and being renowned the continent over, as a fearless DJ and visionary producer with deep roots in Reggae, Hip Hop, Dancehall, Dubstep and Jungle’s early days. His passion for supporting burgeoning artists in Vancouver’s vibrant scene, has blossomed his Low Indigo label and event series, which has given rise to some exciting young talent in the city and helped to connect seemingly disparate parts of the scene. His contributions to building the local scene can not be understated as he was one of the main curators for the acclaimed New Forms Festival and the founder of the city’s notorious Lighta! Sound.
Hydrology is an uncompromising exercise in authenticity. Referencing various moods, styles and emotions being their own streams, this collection of music finds connections by bringing together things of difference, and making sense of them. It’s as textural as it is visceral. Club music that sits somewhere between industrial Techno and spaced-out Dubstep. It sounds as if there was no way the music wasn’t created in outerspace. Bass-drenched and emotive, each track has a weightless sensation that resonates deep in your chest. From the throbbing techno-bass proclivities of ‘No Stars’, to the intense (and tense) menace of ‘Planetary’, to the meditative simplicity of ‘That’, Mr. Red shows us that his productions aren’t afraid to chart unexplored and exciting waters.
This album transcends genre titles, and with songs like ‘Slip’, we see a master producer putting on a clinic in restraint. Michael expertly manipulates space and dynamic to create songs like ‘Virgo Transition’ that consists of fewer sounds than you can count on the fingers of your hands, yet still hauntingly compelling. His collaborations with Blind Prophet and Spurz show another facet to his prowess and nicely round out the package with a sonic flare that would work equally well in headphones as it would on a dance floor.