The EP features four tracks from the duo themselves plus two collaborative efforts
This EP certainly packs a hefty punch if you're a fan of tech-house. Joel Hyland and Olly Coles, AKA Havana Dub, have done a great job with the four individual tracks and two collaborations that make up the Phase 2 EP.
First up is the title track, which has skippy, pronounced percussion, a funky bassline and a vocal sample saying "phase two" repeatedly. Next comes a collaboration with Cardiac called The Function, which follows a similar formula but with added acid and the vocal sample saying "to the function". That's followed by Surch, which starts with a muted kickdrum and tambourine and builds with a synth riff. It's a more minimal track than the first two, with another vocal sample and a less intense backbeat.
Track four is entitled Hit Back and again builds with the adding of various sounds which include an acidic riff, a one-note string line and snare rolls. Again it's quite a minimal cut, with the string line and acid riff used in the breakdown. Number five is another collaboration, this time with fellow Mancunian Ranura Groove, and is up a dark chugger that uses samples from horror film trilogy The Purge to good effect. And then finally track six, Time, takes a deeper approach than the rest, with another random vocal sample put to good use.
The only real criticism I have is that if you listen to all six tracks one after another, they do start to sound quite formulaic. But that's not going to be a problem when they are played individually in a DJ's set, and what I do love is the raw, uncompromising sound of pure tech-house... which this EP is a great example of!
Words: Danny Slade
Release date: 3 April
Review Score: 7