Dreamtrak is Oliver Horton who spends most of his time locked in an East London studio surrounded by vintage synths and speakers. His music as Dreamtrak has been steadily surfacing online over the past 12 months, winning over the likes of A.G. Cook, whose remix of the track still stands as one of the micro-genre’s best moments.
Horton’s debut Dreamtrak EP (Double Denim Records) is a collection of intriguing detours into the world of dance music. ‘Bad Thoughts’ serves as its lead single. A robotic kickdrum and appletalk samples lay the foundation for a solid groove, which is subsequently skewed as it reaches several lightly stabbing peaks. Parallels can be drawn with the blissed-out europhia of Scandinavian producers Todd Terje or Lindstrom.
Each track on the EP begins with a very simple mission: ‘Do Re Mi’ is a half-speed flip of one of music theory’s 101 basics, eventually turning the simple Do Re Mi concept in on itself across five epic minutes. ‘The Tide’ and ‘Control 2′ are the pop peaks of the EP. In Horton’s own words, ‘The Tide’ is his attempt at an ABBA song and features vocalist Alexander Burnett who worked closely on the concept. ‘Control 2′ is a collaboration with vocalist Joe Flory (a.k.a. Amateur Best) which takes sharp synths and pairs them with a home-made sampler. Flory’s smooth voice is chiseled to a point over airless synths, resulting in a gloriously vacuum-packed piece of pop music.
Dreamtrak’s five song survey of electronic music from the view of his studio is a fascinating, quirky take on some familiar sounds twisted into his own unique mould. Horton’s debut is an intricately crafted snippet into his variety of life, containing his interpretation of sounds both familiar and distant. An interesting EP and one which adds thought and balance to the current musical landscape.