With a nonstop release cycle and a seemingly endless cadre of producers in their pocket, VALE has become a one-stop-shop for the darker textures and compositions of broken beat electronic music. Having tapped into the likes of Kursa, Seppa, Hurtdeer, and Whynnel over three years ago, it is a safe bet that they possess a keen understanding for the most hair-raising musings from around the world. In just the last year alone, VALE has released tracks from Smigonaut, Voljum, Wessanders, Hullabaloo, and Resonant Language, showcasing the skillsets of what are surely tomorrow’s dons of low-end production. Following up their massive Awareness compilation, their fresh compilation Dimitri’s Table is a parred-down, tactile assortment of nuclear powered sound design.
The concept of Dimitri’s Table is at once both novel and elementary; Elements combine to form compounds. Compounds have different properties from the elements they are composed of. Reflecting this ethos, every track on the compilation is a collaborative effort. In some contrast to previous VALE releases, this collection of tunes carries an atmospheric weight that is often left behind in favor of razor-sharp bass design and tonal aggression. The first track, “Zappified”, is a 4x4 doozy rendered with all manner of vowel-esque wobbles and crescendo’d bass courtesy of Carlo Frick and Abelation. KLIINE, DMR, and Walrus Tales join forces once again with their track “Eccentric“, a vivacious drum & bass adventure with a little half-time flirting around near the end of the composition. Channeling emotive flavor, Phicizist and Zain Wolf utilize specific note relationships, building and breaking tension with the use of distorted harmonics and rhythmic turnarounds in “Stages of Depression“. DFNKT and GEMO take things through a glitched-out matrix in “Wobble“, breaking apart waveforms inside of granular synthesis. Closing out the compilation, Waeys and Dayle bust out perhaps the thickest sauce of them all in “Merge“, with pulsating, resampled textures rupturing speaker cones and eardrums alike.
2018 has seen dozens of high-octane producers sling their biggest and baddest tunes to date, and for those at the top of that spectrum, VALE is a platform unlike most others. Maintaining a clear musical palette is paramount to the success of a label, and that’s the cornerstone of this compilation’s experience. After a year of non-stop releases and spotlights, one can only wonder what continues to brew deep in the VALE laboratories.