browna

ASC browna

March 7, 2016
edited about 1 year ago
Definitely agree with the comments below! James Clements aka ASC, can do no wrong in my eyes. Every album he has produced since 2011 has been absolutely outstanding!! I only say from 2011 as I have no interest in the whole Drum n bass scene so I can't comment on productions prior to 2011.
His ambient releases on Silent Season are honestly some of the finest deep electronic music albums I have ever heard!!
Anyone new to this guys music should check out his double CD album - "Time Heals All" on the fine Silent Season label....utter genius!!!
MENTAL_JUNGLIST

ASC MENTAL_JUNGLIST

March 24, 2016
Very true what you have written/ replied.
Sometimes I have the feeling to hearing still D&B vibes in some of his latast tracks. Maybe its a remnant of his musical voyage.
Adhlc

ASC Adhlc

March 16, 2016
I agree completely - though I'd back it up a little further and say 2009 instead of 2011. "The Astral Traveller" is one of the smoothest Drum & Bass albums I've ever heard. Even if you don't particularly like the genre, that album is still worth checking out. Also, "Nothing Is Certain", which came out in 2010, is an absolute masterpiece and was his first LP to break away from the traditional Drum & Bass sound.
SYSTEM-J

ASC as reviewed by SYSTEM-J

June 8, 2011
This guy is rapidly becoming one of the most important names in electronic music. I'm not a massive fan of his older, more conventional drum 'n bass material, but in the last couple of years Clements has found an outlet for a much more ambient and experimental direction. Obviously the hype centres around his role in the Autonomic sound, but that's just the tip of the iceberg. Melding ambient and IDM with drum 'n bass, dubstep, techno and a huge obsession with science fiction culture and philosophy, ASC is making some of the most cutting edge music around that still evokes the spaced-out futurism that has defined so much of electronic music for the past 40 years.

Check out the Sci Fi Files EPs on Covert Operations for the more utopic side or his work on new label Auxiliary for a darker vision of the future. His masterpiece, though, is the astonishing Research And Development album under the alias Intex Systems. This album came out in 2006 and yet Clements had to wait four more years for anyone outside the drum 'n bass scene to wake up and realise his talent. It may not be that much longer before we come to regard him as one of the great electronic musicians of the last 20 years.
distopia

ASC distopia

December 27, 2011
edited over 2 years ago
SYSTEM-J
his older, more conventional drum 'n bass material


IMHO, to say that ASC has been conventional on dnb is to misrepresent completely his productions, or alternatively not to have a very clear idea of what conventional dnb is in the first place.

Furthermore, given the recent minimalist turn on dubstep and dnb, I would say that the late ASC is more in tune with the general direction of the scenes he's working into than the ASC of the early-to-mid years.

The whole Cov Ops, techmospheric experiment has been the true, strikingly against-the-grain, alternative project in drum'n bass scene in the 2000s -probably the first substantial novelty since No U Turn invented neurofunk. It created a musical niche, a center around which authoritative producers as Mav, Electrosoul System, Implex and ICR gravitated in their creative time. It fused together the techy of techstep, the psychedelic of neurofunk, the emotionality of GLR-style atmospheric drum'n bass, and sometimes a touch of the more soul/funky stuff, especially on drums and voices.

ASC's tunes were archetypal of that: "Forcefield" and "Zero Sequence" (COV015), "Quadraxis" (feat. Motion, COV021), "Snowstorm" (GRR004), the "Distress Signal" / "Second Sight" plate (on Soothsayer), the "Drum Track 3" / "Fresh" plate (on Offshore), "Alphane Moons" (late on Vibez, but produced at least 1 year before I guess), "Airborne" (with Sunchase, COVCD002), the ASC & MAV collaborations, all those tunes are as different as sophisticated and full of musical sense. Not conventional at all. For some interesting reasons, even the tunes one can legitimately describe as not particularly innovative were of record-high quality and brillance: "Heatseeker" (VBZ035) and "Find A Way" (never to be released I guess) are good examples.

Now that the label is gone and ASC himself seems to be willing to clear the blackboard and start again from zero It's all good to point to the new stuff he makes. I'm not necessarily enthusiastic about it, but it's good electronic music, all the more good as it enabled him to reach some well deserved popularity. But appreciation for current productions need not come at the expense of past work. I'm sure that many of the new fans are not familiar with the first part of James' discography. Strong suggestion: go browse some oldies - it's all on sale in digital format, the rarity of vinyls is no excuse. No one will regret the move.