Jack Murphy – Points Zero (Don’t Be Afraid SPE005 – 2014)
It is a peculiar relationship I have to some labels and artists, Don’t Be Afraid being one of them. Enjoying most of their releases, I am not too concerned when missing out some of the output. What prevails is a feel of safety, the knowledge they are around and accessible when I need good music.
Luckily, I did not give a miss to Don’t Be Afraid’s newest four-tracker titled “Points Zero”. It comes from Jack Murphy, a San Francisco based artist who had previously released two EPs on Frozen Border sub-label Reference. His Digital Tsunami mix already indicated a good taste and worked as teaser for the actual release, which appeared in the label’s Special Editions series.
Most of the time, Don’t Be Afraid offers a well-balanced mix of techno and house, and it is not any different here. “Points Zero” deserves an applause from both crowds.
Murphy’s toolkit would be unthinkable without drum machine sound, but in the title track, we hear strings complementing the synthetic jacking. Thereafter “4MT” has all the ingredients of a floor killer, a clapping and hitting track where monotonous sequence rubs itself against rallying percussion. On the flipside, downbeat-ish space dub intro leads “Prefec-R” to the stomping grounds of deep house. However, for me the best part comes with the minimalist “Thieves”, a sneaking and bleeping piece of techno hypnotica. This record is born to be liked.