Violent Beauregarde – Viscosity

by Jack Reid

Violent Beauregarde is a producer, from Bath, that can only be described as future-breaks. Violent seems to specialise in guitar licks reminiscent of Tycho’s earlier work, in combination with laid back beats and warm and cosy atmpospheres. A follow up to the more beat driven Deadbeat EP, the aptly named Viscosity takes a different focus. The Viscosity EP seems to be a genuine study in syrup-y, thick pads and atmospheres. Let’s break that down a little more.

The reversed guitars that are perhaps the most prominent feature of Tar are really the mood setters for the whole release. As I sit listening to Tar with the sun beating through the window, heating up the still air, I can’t help but think it all makes sense. As guitar flips right side up around the halfway mark I can’t help but imagine slowly curling smoke in a baking hot room. The use of samples on this release, as in Violent’s other EP, is well executed. Snatches of what could easily be American public access TV from the 60s are peppered over the beats, creating a kind of meditation vibe.

The opening atmosphere of Submerge threatens to jump into the already overworked corner of dark, underwater machine room that XLR8R seems to have an obsession with (but that I’m quickly getting bored of). However, the signature guitar licks come in and nicely counterbalance the submarine organ atmosphere. There is something about this track that still doesn’t connect as much as the other two; I guess it’s hard to give a big clout to a track that is deliberately submerged.

Syrup’s defining feature is the vocal line which appears, in its inaneness, to imply a pair of spaced-out party crashers that can just about keep it together while they dance over Violent’s beats. The beats themselves adopt the cadence of a kind of stoned proto-Disclosure/XXYYXX, with bending synths all over the shop and bike chain hihats tripping over themselves. The effect is that of being inches from passing out at the end of a bender in the sun, with those repeated vocal lines bending up and down over more disconnected TV samples. It’s nice that the track has that vocal personality injected into it, but I do feel that an instrumental release is also in order to show off the beats a little more.