Ara-u & Radioactive Man – Plastic Attack EP (Asking For Trouble)

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It’s been a couple of years since we’ve received new material from British electronic producer and former Two Lone Swordsmen Keith Tenniswood under his Radioactive Man alias, his previous release on vinyl being 2017’s ‘Luxury Sky Garden Remixes’. Two years on, this latest 12” EP on Asking For Trouble ‘Plastic Attack’ sees Tenniswood teaming up with Venezuelan producer Ara-u to deliver four new tracks that deal strictly in chunky and robotic classic electro.

On the A-side, ‘Datatheft’ kicks things off in classic cold European electro territory as clicking drum machines rattle against vast bouncing bass drops, the icy coldwave synths that drift in the background swiftly giving way to dark distorted bass bursts and squelching acid 303s. Throughout, there’s a sense of relentless robotic snap to the rhythms, with the modulated analogue synths that noodle through the track’s second half injecting an undertone of Detroit tech-funk that nicely suits the eerily phased night-drive atmospheres.

By comparison, ‘Failure To Communicate’ gets more stripped back and gritty, taking the infamous “what we have here is a failure to communicate” Guns N’ Roses intro sample and stretching it out over a backdrop of harsh industrial snare snaps, murmuring analogue bass sequences and vampy synth flourishes, the resulting pressurised fusion sitting far closer to US-style breakers’ electro styles.

On the flipside, ‘Daytime Robbery’ offers up the real highlight here as wobbling sub-bass builds up claustrophobic levels of pressure against repetitive siren-flash synth stabs and spidery drum machine kicks with seemingly no respite from the cyborg darkness, before ‘The Last Waltz’ closes this EP off with a furiously overdriven stomp through fuzzed-up bass synths, rattling 808 snares and vaguely EBM-meets-acid sequences that keeps the pressure high until its final moments. Characteristically storming stuff from Radioactive Man that’s sure to go down well with the unreconstructed electro heads.

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