CD, Hive Records, 2006
Hive Records, purveyors of fine hard electronic music, bring together two heavyweights from the scene for a battle over 14 rounds, each taking it in turns to assert their dominance. The resulting skirmish is presented as “The Abuse Technique”, an album that pits New York’s Stephen J Knight (alias Edgey) against the UK’s Matt Green (alias Depth Error) and it isn’t going to be pretty.
Knight is the first to step up, starting things off relatively gently before unleashing the full force of his sub-bass and mental beat onslaught. From there on out the pace is kept at an insanely high rate, Knight and Green not faltering for one second. Trying to describe either of their output is particularly difficult; such is the dense layered complexity of the electronics being produced by each contender. Of the two, Knight’s contributions are harder, more aggressive and manic. Green is slightly more controlled with smoother edges and rounder basslines but this does not detract from his output as he puts up a good fight to Knight’s full-on breakcore torrent.
Only occasionally does Knight pause for the shortest of breathers before launching back into his aural onslaught with renewed vigour. He even hints at a more subtle side to his work, particularly on “Malice Spoils” and “Clocks” where a drifting ambient backing shines through the more restrained passages. Green however utilises more well-chosen samples and controlled rhythms with a more structured approach to his work. This is best illustrated on “Precious Metals”, a track laden with bouncing bass, crashing breaks and a healthy dose of appropriate samples. Knight answers with his own take on the same style which turns up the power a couple of notches and adds a big dose of metallic industrial effects to add a harder edge to proceedings. By this stage, the battle is heated with each side throwing everything they have into the fight and pulling out the stops to retaliate with an even more ferocious response than before. Green’s “Then Come Respect” for example deviates from his usual rounded breaks and plays Knight at his own game with a twisted industrial breakcore assault of his own. As the album draws to a close the exchange heats up, Knight producing one hard breakcore attack after another and Green responding with increasingly harder and more aggressive tracks to the end.
Green probably went into this pairing as the slight underdog but after a valiant fight both he and Knight come out of the arena pretty equally matched. Knight stuck to what he is good at and Green raised his game just that little bit he needed to compete with him on his own terms. Another good release from Hive Records.
— Paul Lloyd