EP Review: ARKLEY – Origins (Our Space Records)

The DJ Arkley looking at the camera
Credit: Arkley

Emerging Scottish DJ and producer ARKLEY has released his EP Origins via Our Space Records and it continues his music influenced by classic 90s rave and big beats sounds. The 3-track EP is an utter joy and perfect to soundtrack the summer. Genres of music may have their moment in the sun, but to see a resurgence of music influenced by the rave and acid house scene brings back smiles and, obviously, dancing.

The lead track ‘Back 2 Love (House ’89)‘ soaks itself in the spirit and sweat of the M25 orbital raves and warehouse parties of 1989’s second “Summer of Love“.  Analogue synth stabs and chopped-up house diva samples ride an irrepressible rhythm track all the way to a heady climax. 

All I Got Is Love‘ switches things up with an early UK garage influenced Korg M1 workout.  Sliced-up vocals interlock with skipping drums and an instant-classic M1 organ bassline to create an irresistible summer groove track. 

However the closing track takes the vibe to a whole new level. The tempo on the hardcore breakbeat-inspired ‘Burnin’ (138 Energy Mix)‘ is simply insane. With an infectious synth riff and pitched up vocals, the track recalls the relentless energy and rugged grooves of The Prodigy‘s ‘Experience‘. It is a frenetic, manic track full of wild abandon.

ARKLEY’s infatuation with music has been there from day one. Writing and playing in bands as a teenager and self-producing home demos from a young age, he started listening to The KLF, Primal Scream, Chemical Brothers and Daft Punk who soon infiltrated his own music. Soon after immersing himself with these classic electronic acts of the 90s, ARKLEY was led down the path to acid house and 90s rave where the Origins EP was born. It expands on ARKLEY’s fresh and intuitive ability to reinvigorate classic 90s dance sounds to make timeless-sounding modern records. To be honest I cannot wait to hear more.

The EP was produced by ARKLEY in his home studio and mastered by Mike Marsh (The Prodigy, The Chemical Brothers and Basement Jaxx).  It follows ‘Rave ’92 (Everybody Dancing)‘ and his debut ‘Music (Over & Over)‘, which was used on primetime BBC News to soundtrack scenes from Leeds Festival 2021. 

For more information on ARKLEY please check out his website and twitter.

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