Posted on February 13, 2023
FRESH JUICE: ‘Cleansed’ by HESK (Low Key Recs)
Toronto based Dutch producer HESK shines on Mel G’s Low Key with the all out footwork of ‘Cleansed’.
Words by Oisín Campbell/ Design by Michael Savage
Buy/ Stream here: HESK / CLEANSED
Hip-hop centric footwork in form, HESK’s ‘Cleansed’ is a flurry of originale rooted instrumental steppers. Programmed by the Dave Smith OB-6 and a Roland MC-307, the Netherlands native combines his hardware base with ebbing synth work concocting grime and trap friendly tones throughout.
Opening with ‘Sizzle’, HESK does exactly that with the UK flavored entrance and chasing kicks. Armed with a low end sub bass, it thuds most prominently amidst its breakdowns adding significant weight to the track’s overall atmospheric feel. Title-track ‘Cleansed’ emerges with a G-Funk style melody that releases the groove alongside more toe-tapping subbed dub and high pitched kicks & claps.
Acidic squelch is the order of the day on ‘Static Juke’. Its vortexing synth progression is brought to the boil, becoming embedded by further rigid foundations. Upside down and inside out, ‘Circled’ revolves on itself with its wriggling melody and ethereal sound screens developing a real energetic wall. On close, ‘Ribbons’ mutates from an eerie synth pallet with extra-terrestrial backgrounds and the Dutchman’s by now staple hot stepping percussive rhythms
There is a real organic flow of energy with each track’s succession. Described by label head Mel G as having a feeling of ‘connective tissue’ within its DNA, ‘Cleansed’ thrives on its minimalism leaving room for its more complex inner core that is destined for soundsystem situations.