Willamette Dubs, the debut double album by one Lamont Kohner, who might or might not also be Boise’s Patrick Benolkin, wearer of such clothes as Electricwest and Eluder, has arrived in a 2CD set format.
Containing five original cuts and five remixes that run the gamut from hard-edged dark dub techno to minimal electronics and more textural ambient explorations, Willamette Dubs makes a bold first impression that is at once unique and traditional. As the title of these works might indicate, Kohner’s sound owes a lot to the elements, bearing a lurching rhythmic low end and detailed atmospherics that wash over the sparse chords they surround – there is something very strong here that resembles an unspoken identity, almost as if Lamont himself is a ghost, cursed to forever haunt the bottom of the Willamette River in Portland.
The remix personnel for the second half of the album are Germany’s minimal techno recluse Ndru, the Dutch electronics mastermind Ohrwert, Denver’s woodsy ambient techno spirit Grey Deer, Philadelphia’s lurking analog mutator Morris Arch Nightwork and South Carolina’s bedroom obsessive Coppice Halifax. In addition to submitting a remix, Brian Grainger (Coppice Halifax) also mastered the entire album and curated all five remixes.
Willamette Dubs is a fantastic display of hi-fi electronics and a worthy point of interest for anyone of the dub techno or ambient persuasion. Headphones are encouraged.