The beginning of Irreverence dabbles in intricate melodic piano ambiance that one may expect from a historic four-piece of classically trained French gentlemen - so it’s mildly shocking to know that Dirtyphonics first honed their production skills with metal riffs. After teasing bass fanatics with more than a half-decade spent tempo-shifting club bangers from the Bloody Beetroots (“Warp”) to Benny Benassi (“Electroman”) and Krewella (“Killin’ it”), the collective builds the initial drop of their debut LP across nearly five minutes and two tracks — the classical arrangement of ”Prelude (White)”, and the epic march of “Prelude (Black)” — before finally rewarding fans with a devastating rolling bass release.
Similar to Korn’s The Path of Totality, Irreverence fuses the brutality associated with late-’90s nu-metal and current bass-music. Unlike their predecessors, “Los Angeles”, which features fellow European electro-metal outfit Modestep, and “Walk in the Fire” are an earnest bridge between the sound of their youths toward today’s obsession with bass wobbles and not a feeble attempt to maintain relevancy.
This broad production palette and irreverence for tempo restrictions (the LP swings from the 175 BPM of “Los Angeles” to the 128 Euro-house of “No Stopping Us” and “Chaos” half-stepping at 88) allows for the quartet to challenge the defining aesthetics of their big-name collaborators. Both “Stage Divers” (feat. Steve Aoki) and “Hanging on Me” (feat. Liela Moss of The Duke Spirit) showcase their ability to work a big room without losing the edge of their underground roots.
Even amidst Miami Music Week, it seems Daft Punk have been able to steal much the attention away from the vast field of producers, but Dirtyphonics (along with fellow four-piece Birdy Nam Nam) are proving worthy challengers for the pinnacle of the French electronic pyramid.
Essential Tracks: “Stage Divers” (feat. Steve Aoki), “Los Angeles” (feat. Modestep), and “Walk in the Fire”