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Live Review: Christopher Port shines on stellar EP, Everything in Quotes "DARK"

25 October 2017 | 9:47 am | Rosie Rae

After a couple of very strong electronic releases this year, CHRISTOPHER PORT has returned to bestow upon us his stunning new EP, Everything in Quotes "DARK."  True to Christopher Port's style, the EP is a showcase of his diverse tastes and eclectic influences. Port effortlessly marries a myriad of edgy, rave-era sounds, with a hint of modern drama. Subdued and incredibly sexy, Christopher Port knows just when to hold back, and when to get those synths wobbling. As the name would suggest, the new EP offers a much darker perspective of dance music, with deeper baselines, and rhythms that are highly reminiscent of classic UK styles.

To say that Christopher Port has evolved would hardly do justice to this complex and cleverly constructed body of work. From the gentle tap of the high hat, and a warm oozy synth of 'Nobody Chose You', Christopher Port hooks you in. The crackling electronica and rich atmospherics could be likened to acts such as CARIBOU or fellow Sydney siders SEEKAE, yet there's even a touch of new labelmate FLUME (Future Classic teamed up with Pieater for this release) in his navigation of dynamic ranges.

Second single off the EP, 'Baby It's Not My Will', further delves into this new side of Port, plunging deeper into the darkness. Doing a spectacular job of creating tension and never quite easing up, he creates an energy that's relentless yet still enjoyable, masterfully combining moments of stress and euphoria. Using heavy vocal effects, he creates a spooky dance track that's a slight touch on the break pedal from the track opener, before shifting gears yet again in 'Raver VIP'.

Soulful vocal samples and Port's trademark garage sounds and polyrhythms create the bed for this track to lie on, but it doesn't stay still for very long. As soon as you're lulled into thinking this might be his chillest track yet, with all its tinkering and bleeping, the reprieve is over as an addictive bass comes into play, and then is taken away again. It's this ebb and flow of surprising elements that make Port's music such an enthralling ride to be on, and 'Raver VIP' serves as an incredibly exciting snapshot into where he might potentially be heading.

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Finally, ending with the aptly named 'Uppers', Port once again utilises soulful vocal samples and Jamie xx-influenced polyrhythms to make a thriving, writhing cacophony of sounds to make a subtle, yet intoxicating closing track. Showing his know-how of restraint, Port never gives too much, and instead opts to give a little at a time, adding in one or two layers and taking a few away. Snowballing into a perfect 3am track, 'Uppers' really does rise and rise, before being steadily phased out with control to close.

Having adopted and developed his own sound, Christopher Port weaves together stark electronic elements, and infuses some serious soul with his intricate percussive patterns, and warm floaty melodies. The broken beats and fuzzy baseline are real driving forces across the entire EP.

Christopher's EP, Everything in Quotes "DARK", is out now via Pieater x Future Classic

Words by Rosie Rae and Emma Jones