ZamZam 72 comes from one of our favorite producers for the last few years, the elusive Andy Mac. Known in particular for his “Diving Bird” series, a buy-on-sight trilogy of 12”s on Bristol’s Idle Hands, the idiosyncratic producer also has releases on No Corner (in collaboration with Ossia), and the seminal Punch Drunk label. His unique style of chopped, techy, warm, pastoralist dubwise had us from the first, and the tunes he sent us flew through our A&R gauntlet with ease. His are records we return to again and again, revealing more subtlety with each listen, free from genre or tempo constraints.
“Dawner,” the first of two transmissions from Lands End, Cornwall, is a perfect encapsulation of the Andy Mac sound: melancholy yet uplifting, rooted in techno-steppers yet rough-hewn and organic, breezy yet piercingly introspective. Led by a staccato kick and insistent metallic snare, featuring a bubbling Hammond organ lead by Richard Blackbarrow of cult UK Rough Trade band “Bob,” this one shimmers with summer warmth, lens-flare refracting saturated side-light, made for dusk sessions and sunrise sets, preferably out of doors, far from any city.
Layered with field recordings of streams and sea, “Tawny Grammar” is an altogether deeper affair, a dark, hallucinatory journey into the power of repetition in a 140-ish style. Shaker, kick, and hi hat lay the foundation for a looping and loping Binghi drum and guitar chop that begin their journey hacking through a dense undergrowth of sound, only to find themselves ensnared in a web of backwards delays and psychotropic effects that suspend the unwary in a strange tension between minimal and claustrophobic… the dance’s dark beating heart.