Couldn't be happier to get this one - one of the best releases by Source without a doubt. The A side is classic, heavy, the centre piece of the EP. However the B side is what many sign up for. Emotional, intricate Jungle at its best. Any owner of this will be attached, there isn't a way not to be. 10/10 from me.
Source Direct may be most famous for the barely-constrained tension of their darker work, like the 2 LPs they put out on Virgin (or Astralwerks for us North Americans). But for my money, this 2-track EP is their best.
"Secret Liaison" is a classic Amen groove, exuding the freshness and optimism of early Photek. The build-up has a quick ride cymbal segue into the amen rhythm, yet you can tell there's more to come. When they drop that guitar chord, the bass hits, and the tune finally opens up… heaven. An ethereal synth pad, sounding a bit like vocals, hovers over top and imparts a sense of progress as the track continues. The drum programming is excellent as usual, but this song fits together so well as a whole, I can hardly bring myself to focus on just one element.
"Complexities" has a similar atmosphere and although it doesn't reach quite the same heights, it's still an excellent moody drum & bass track. This one is driven by a clever interplay between samples that creates a convincing impression of melody in a rhythm-forward track. In typical SD fashion, everything is fully fleshed out here, the tune propelled along by subtle touches aimed at (as they said in one infamous interview) "helping the listener… listen." Listen for these and you won't be disappointed.
I would kill for a reissue of this EP, and I hope Nonplus (or anyone really) comes through with one.
I always confuse the two titles! the one here for me is the Amen monster that rolls along with a deep jazzy chord and some subtle strings, that's all it does but it does it so perfectly. Fearsome and beautiful at the same time. No way this one is leaving my crate.
For me it's almost all about Complexities. Starts off with beautiful lifting pads with a slowly building break. Then you finally hear the reasoning for the name Complexities when a man speaks the word in true Source Direct fashion echoing into the distance. The bass is a big punchy 808 that fits the track perfectly. At around the 2:45 mark the second break is layered on and this is when the tune truly starts taking shape. The chords switch up after and the layers of breaks change quite nicely. Little jazz stabs with woman vocals are added and then my favorite part hits in when the chords re-enter and the tune gets dark and moody (around 4:40).
Truly a classic that should never be overlooked.
I can't really comment on Secret Liaison much as everyone knows this is one of their best tunes ever made.