Dubtil debuts on [a:rpia:r] with an exquisite three-track EP.
The seasoned Romanian producer’s contribution ends a four-year hiatus for the label, since Ricardo Villalobos’ ‘Empirical House’ LP back in 2017.
Both Dubtil and [a:rpia:r] have been pivotal in the evolution of the minimal movement in Romania. Alongside the bottomless roster of innovative artists coming out of Bucharest, Dubtil’s work has been significant in shaping the landscape within the subtle, tripped-out corners of club music.
Previous works have landed on SIT’s Amphia, Raresh’s Metereze, as well as a collaboration with Cristi Cons for Nervmusic which featured on the Trommel channels in 2017. Although, like much of the minimal circuit, most tracks remain unreleased and shared amongst friends, making official releases a significant insight into their works.
Many of these introspective, long-form works have been the soundtrack to a number of Sunwaves sunrise moments, most notably ‘Repet Slap Repet’ being eased into the mix by Rhadoo deep into after-hour realms.
Arpiar016 opens the door to three elegant cuts from his locker. Varying energies meander between menacing, club-hungry moods and the more immersive, sci-fi world of Dubtil.
‘I’ is the lengthiest and most ominous of the three. A stern bassline wraps itself around a bed of cryptic, warping textures and a druggy beat chugging in tow. Fine textures develop into organic melodies, leaving much for interpretation in this cosmic head trip.
Rhythms head towards techno in the driving urgency of ‘II’. The palate remains on a reasonably dry tip, highlighting the Romanian’s ear for producing emotive ideas with very little, and often ordinary sounds.
909 hats and rides pin the groove, dipped in warm reverbs triggering subtle swings of movement in the high end. Elements continue to connect as the track unfolds, whether its a nimble bass note slotting between the gaps of a melody, or a subtle hi-hat tweak, progressions are infectious.
‘III’ nails this slow-burning approach in a more relaxed, breaky affair. A blissful chord sequence builds over the lazy breaks, drifting in and out of the mix, breezing through a nature-inspired bed of textures.
The dedication to his craft comes through in both Dubtil’s deftly designed music, and a humble presence on the scene. A refreshing music-first presence soaks up an online presence, with limited information and the occasional Bandcamp release.
Buy the record at juno.co.uk.