Granny Records’ duo Hana come correct with their first album, offering a refreshing take on techno and IDM variants in the vein of Jan Jelinek, Raime, Actress and hints of the mighty Chain Reaction label. Mastered at Berlin’s Dubplates and Mastering by none other than Rashad Becker, a name that often appears in the run-out groove of artists who inhabit a curiously funky techno-not-techno netherworld – Hana’s debut self-titled release grows in stature and listening enjoyment with every spin. With a sense of fun and adventure inhabiting the grooves, Hana (who are also part of label-mates, Good Luck Mr Gorsky), explore experimental timbres and ghostly vocalisations with a lightness of touch that belies their recording credentials.
Starting off with an abstract, “Clicks and Cuts” style intro, “Liv” slowly finds the sweet spot between mutant Detroit electro funk, a hint of the indie/dance territory of Matthew Dear and the abstract, yet rhythmic 12″ releases on the Beatservice label, by Norwegian duo Information from the mid 90s. “Obermaier” implies the groove to begin with, until a wrong-footed man-with-two-left-feet rhythm leads into minimal acidic flourishes. Album opener “SM” heads in a Ricardo Villalobos vs. Nonplace Urban Field direction, as the lopsided rhythm and sepulchral vocals add a haunted edge to proceedings. “CR80” uses beautifully syncopated live drums and urgent female vocals, and adds a driving, belligerent synth riff falling somewhere in between DMZ and Gary Numan. Echoic, boingy sounds threaten to derail the beat, but somehow it manages to maintain, reminding me of Shed and A Made Up Sound; more in overall feel than in the specific sounds. For those that enjoy abstract electronics that work just as well on headphones as on the dance floor, Greece’s Hana are a duo to watch.