- WARPLP90RLong Player £20.00
Lifestyles Of The Laptop Cafe
Double LP in paper inners, in 5mm outer sleeve with download card insert. Tucked away in the great depths of the Warp catalogue is this elegant, liquid heartache of a record. An album credited to the late James Stinson, one half of cult-Detroit techno unit (alongside Gerald Donald) Drexciya, Lifestyles... stands as one of the remarkable records of the genre. Stinson died a year after release, lending this already beautiful work endless resonance. Where the dystopian aqua-tronics of previous Drexciya were often jet-black, cold, brittle and abrasive this is a yearning soul music, played out down rain soaked streets, the buzzing lights of industry flickering in the darkness, the warm blue of a new day ready to break. This is a record where techno reached its raw, most emotive peak... Sustained pads paint minor-key melodies while electroid-vocals are buried deep in the hydrothermal mass of squelching bass-clusters and funky-filtered bleeps. At its skittering percussion core, a stripped back 808 tapestry, sequenced into myriad jazz-inflected shapes, a pulsing kick drum the snapping heartbeat, ticking hi-hats bursting from every angle. All this tingles with the ghosts of records past, of Kraftwerkian humanoids, of first-wave Detroit, of refracted Hancock and Ayres, but as Stinson intones on the fifth track, Let Me Be What I Wanna Be, Lifestyles is a creation all of its own special making, a sound that would inspire the latter day deep-house machinations of Omar S, Jus-Ed, Moodymann and influence – however indirectly - a wealth of current UK / US bass operators including Actress and Kyle Hall. More importantly it remains a beguiling epitaph to Stinson’s sadly distinguished life.