Force Placement is the alias of Los Angeles-based DJ / producer Jason James, who hosts FB Radio on RWD.FM as well as co-runs The Black Lodge, a regular underground techno party in LA. Over the last couple of years he’s released two EPs on his own LA909 label that have flitted between techno, ambient and leftfield sounds, and a year on from his preceding release ‘Coursing’, this latest download-only EP sees him linking up with Tigerbeat6 and LA’s Perpetual Dawn party crew for five tracks that see him setting the controls for gritty, analogue-driven techno. Opening track ‘Dirty Camry’ sends a massive distorted synth bassline fuzzing and sparking against a stripped down backing of 4/4 toms and snares as delay-treated ambient drones add to the sense of vastness, the throbbing rhythms reaching hypnotic momentum as twinkling melodic tones slowly emerge out of the darkness.
If the aforementioned track offers up a stereophonic treat equally suited to both headphones and a large PA, ‘My Mind Is Telling Me No’ offers up the most hard-edged techno excursion here, spending its nine minutes threading rippling synthetic textures and ghostly, delayed-out vocal calls through a tensely coiled backbone of pounding tribal 4/4 kickdrums and scissoring, aluminium-thin hi-hats, the phasing effects almost guaranteed to mess with your head over a good set of headphones. Elsewhere, ‘Mirrors’ injects some dark drama into proceedings as ominous swirling chords build against a backing of pressurised tech-house snares and shuffling kickdrums before elastic analogue synth bends begin to worm through the mix and eerie female soul vocals flit back and forth, before ‘Lifter’ closes this EP on a mostly ambient note, sending glitchy tones fluttering against crystalline melodic notes and slowed down, crushed sounding vocal loops, the idyllic surface masking darker, more unsettled waters. On the evidence of the tracks here, Force Placement is a producer who definitely deserves some wider exposure.