With releases that continue to be erratic and incalculable, spüke’s latest track ‘DRUNK’ turns back the clock to the 1980s, to the rise of acid house and the TB-303. A brand new step in his own production journey, the track serves as yet another testament to spüke’s genuine curiosity and ardor for sonic exploration, never concerned with creed or genre.
‘DRUNK’ is a faultless time capsule of the acid house of electronic music’s past, and this reflection offers hope for the future, with music that is as bright and inventive as it is nostalgic. The new track features the sounds of the Roland TB-303, a novelty bass synthesizer (and arguably the most sought-after machine) that was released by Roland Corporation in 1982. Designed to simulate bass guitars, it was regarded as a commercial failure and discontinued in 1984, merely 2 years into production. But the sound itself gave rise to the beginning of the acid house genre, and the defunct device helped lead the electronic music renaissance in 1980s Chicago, along with iconic Phuture DJ, originally comprised of Early “Spanky” Smith Jr., Herbert “Herb J” Jackson, and Nathaniel Pierre Jones, aka DJ Pierre.
The term “acid” is derived from the distinctly harsh “acidic” sound of the Roland 303’s squelchy resonant filter. Experimentation with the device by Phuture led to some of the most dynamic sounds of the era and made for music that was more than mesmerizing.
With such a rich history, it’s no wonder spüke has dove headfirst into what has influenced a larger portion of his discography. “I’ve enjoyed the 303 sound for a while now,” spüke says. “I’ve been incorporating it melodically in a couple of recent works… but I wanted to skew off and create a faster, harder, grittier track [with ‘DRUNK’].”
The original TB-303 is hard to come by, with original versions selling for upwards of $4,000 on eBay, so to create something authentic and original, even with new VST plugins and samples, can prove to be immensely difficult. And yet, ‘DRUNK’ seems to replicate a great deal of this nostalgic sound perfectly, bearing an unmistakable resemblance to Acid House of old, while keeping other aspects of the track buoyed to contemporary production techniques. The blend is electrifying, as custom robotic vocals also echo the phrase “Is it the acid? Is it the whiskey? No! It’s this fucking music!”. While the term “acid” does refer to the drum machine, listeners will definitely be left on a high from this titillating track.