12″ picture vinyl, Livevil, 2007
A label’s first release can frequently be considered a broad statement of intent in terms of style and substance and, if good enough, it may even set the bar for future releases. “Camo Cuts,” a 12-inch picture vinyl split released on the nascent label Livevil, is one of those releases which sets the bar pretty high. After checking out “Camo Cuts” I’m left wondering what else the Livevil label has up its sleeves, as well as hoping for more Scrap.edx releases and a S.O.R.E.H.E.A.D. full-length debut.
Side A features two top-notch quality new tracks by Scrap.edx which show a new side to this artist’s music, well-known for fast-paced and mechanical pummelling beats, as well as subtle detail and characteristic sample use. While keeping a similar level of intensity to that found in “Recoil The Void” and detailed composition (as in the split “collect:erase”) with “Where Are You Hiding?,” Joshua Colella cranks up the groove and serves an intense and memorable hybrid cocktail of industrial beats and drum’n’bass broken rhythms. As expected, it is peppered with a multitude of choice samples. Coming as something of a surprise, and deviating the most from Scrap.edx’s signature sound, the mash-up madness of “Devastating Microphone Control” is another show of versatility and skill at layering samples and playing with broken rhythms; another engaging track though it may seem to lack some intensity.
Hailing from Quebec City and sharing members with the hardcore/industrial act Corrupted Suburbs, S.O.R.E.H.E.A.D. are pretty much the new kids on the block, and side B of “Camo Cuts” is their first official release. They’re out to impress and impress they do, opening with the excellent “My Hip Hop Will Rock,” a fast-paced mash-up of breakbeats, driving industrial rhythms, the occasional guitar sample and hip-hop influences. After grabbing the listener’s attention, they give the listener a breather with “The Soundtrack,” a slower but still intense piece, before ending with “Never Ending Morning,” which masterfully shifts from intense rhythms to what is something of a mellow (but rather fitting) ending of breakbeats and guitar strings.
Simple and elegant, consisting quite simply of a camouflage pattern, in addition to artist and track information in the center, the artwork for this picture disc is also worthy of notice and is the proverbial cherry on top of the cake. Definitely a treat for the eyes as well as for the ears.
— Miguel de Sousa