Review: Steve O’Sullivan – Dimensions LP [SUSH056 / SUSH057 / SUSH058]

We broke the news of Steve O’Sullivan’s collaborative album earlier this year but I don’t think anybody could have imagined just how good this body of work would be. Obviously, Steve and Sushitech go way back and there is very few places that this highly acclaimed three-part six disc album should land on.

The collaborative nature of the album is as much as celebration of the intersecting genres that make up this corner of electronic music as Steve’s mastery of it and to our knowledge there hasn’t been a release like it recent years. From the outset ‘Dimensions’ is as finely weighted as it gets. Steve’s track ‘From East To West’ with Soela and the deep dubby house of ‘Triple Distilled’ alongside Frenchman Brawther really set the tone for the longplayer.

Flipping over ‘Dimensions’ I side A and the energy levels receive an energy boost with SOS combining with Ben Buitendijk on ‘Take It’ and Thomas Melchior on ‘Spirit Funk’. Both jams are a lessons in stripped back atmospheric house and although this a common thread that runs through both Steve and his collaborators work the difference in styles is impressively diverse.

Previous Sushitech artists SIT appear on a more minimal leaning work alongside Steve on ‘Dark At Five’ and again the album takes yet another emotive twist. Joining side C on the first 12” is Lawrence and the forlorn heavy hitting beats of ‘Just One More Thing’ complete the third side of the album. Flipping over and one of minimal’s leading emotive names Christopher Ledger works with Steve to turn in one of the more atmospheric works on the album on ‘Interference’. Christopher shares side D with none other than previous collaborator and genre instigator Ricardo Villalobos and ‘Closer’ see’s the pair meet at a juncture which is decidedly a 50/50 signature of sounds.

‘Dimensions’ II kicks off in slightly different direction and Sushitech sister label Pariter artist Derek Carr combines with Steve on the upbeat bassline funk of ‘Still Zero’. This uptick in BPM and vibe is followed through with a hookup with none other than Steve Rachmad on ‘No Ghosts’, ‘Midnight Special’ with Mark Broom and ‘Dark Forces’ with Markus Suckut. Side G continues the theme of who’s who of deep dance music with Conforce sharing the dials on the ethereal ‘Elemental Dub’. Completing side G is Exos and ‘The Hidden’ and they turn in a quintessential slice of dub techno.

Heading towards the business end of the album and perhaps one of the more emotive sections of the album see’s SOS partner up with Vince Watson on ‘Shadwoplay’. While Vince is perhaps known for more upbeat works his collab with Steve is a balanced blooming piece of dub techno. Drawing the second part of ‘Dimensions’ to a close and Soela and Steve deliver the most downtempo track on the release and ‘Home Alone’ brings the disc to a fitting close.

The final disc on the album is a more club focused journey and part III of ‘Dimensions’ dedicates a side of the each of the two records to a collab. The first of which comes from an old allie Ricardo Villalobos and the shimmering ‘Short Circuit’ features pristine pads, muttered utterings and crisp drums. Flipping over and Thomas Melchior returns on ‘The Shadow’ with more deep shuffling house. All good things must come to an end and side C of the final disc is taken care of by Dana Ruh and hers and Steve’s ‘Beneath The Surface’ the subterranean banger undulates throughout while over play of synths flickers above. To bring the curtain down on ‘Dimensions’ Soela returns to the studio with Steve on ‘Healing Spirals’ a forlorn electronica leaning track that neatly ties up the release with a dubby bow.

As well as working some serious magic on the mixing of the entire album, label head Yossi Amoyal has a bonafide classic album on his hands. Again, this work of art from Steve is a timely reminder of just why Steve O’Sullivan is so highly prized not just in the dub techno realm but as an over arching electronic music artist.

Steve O’Sullivan’s ‘Dimensions’ LP part I, II and III is now available via deejay.de.

More info on Sushitech Records
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More info on Steve O’Sullivan
Trommel Feature | Trommel.066 | Facebook | Resident Advisor | Soundcloud | Discogs