Complimenting his 2017 release, ‘Everything in Quotes “DARK”’, Christopher Port’s latest EP ‘Everything in Quotes “LIGHT”’ pulls us deeper within the Melbourne producer’s cosim of UK Garage.
Consistent with his previous work, which along with multiple original releases includes drumming with Airling and #1 Dads and producing alongside BUOY and Jack Grace, ‘Everything in Quotes “LIGHT”’ serves as a welcome cerebral stimulation. Before pressing play on this one, have lubricant on hand because the spontaneity of Port’s sample laced production will have your auditory lobe turning gears and your body feeling some type of way; house beat progressions are reupholstered in scratchy, capricious hi-hat and snare sequences, but no matter how schizophrenic the treble section, the steady four-on-the-floor thrum of kicks is sure to evoke a visceral impulse to dance. The opening track, ‘DTF’, may very well be the pinnacle of the EP in this sense. A progressively intensifying shuffle drives this cut into a myriad of samples and arpeggiating keys that you can’t help but lose yourself in, but all the while the mix remains crisp.
In succeeding track, ‘Me & My Heart’, vocal cuts are illuminated in a fashion similar to Port’s 2016 single, ‘My Love’, creating a foreground for a trance inducing slew of synths to swirl behind. Evolving just short of the track’s terminus is the song’s most climactic moment, leaving a desire for closure, and after drifting through the next track, ‘What I Leave Behind’, this longing is only prolonged by an otherworldly soundscape of birds and children upon which ethereal chimes and unintelligible vocal samples frolik. This phase of the EP is marked by an air of serenity that teeters on the border of the familiar and uncanny, effectively carving a depression for the ultimate track to fill.
‘Find a Way’ packages this EP up neatly, with the call and response of vocal samples serving as a fine patterned wrapping paper. With an unfailing kick, shakers help keep time, but you won’t be counting. Rather, you’ll be entranced by the modest bow that tops everything off: a climactic breakdown with just the right amount of room on either side.
If by this point, the amount of hip shaking has tired you to the extent where you can’t take a decent step back and contextualise this EP within its surroundings, you’d be missing out. In a garage dance party, ‘Everything in Quotes “LIGHT”’ is a beautifully presented gift that adds a splash of colour to the celebration. Even if you aren’t a fan of the present itself, there’s nothing to be disappointed about; ‘Everything in Quotes “LIGHT”’ is at least wonderful gesture, a nod to classic UKG with the unique twists of one of Australia’s most talented beat-makers.