Throwback: Surgeon – Atol

Later this month, Anthony Childs, a.k.a Surgeon will grace the city of Manchester with his presence. Bringing a plethora of stomping techno records straight out of the darkest corners and most unexplored spaces of the Berghain, he’ll be smiling away as he delivers yet another one of his uniquely unrelenting, but appealing sets.

Surgeon’s upcoming appearance in the rainy city got me thinking back to his debut album ‘Communications’ which he dropped back in 1996 on Downward. A truly seminal album in the techno sphere and an album that should be required listening for any student of the genre.

The whole album is constructed with simplicity that in turn creates an overwhelming sense of power. From that hard, driving bassline in ‘Wire’ to the minimal inspired bleeps and blips of ‘Wave’, or the feeling of euphoria as ‘Syllable’ finally unleashes itself upon you, it really is so hard to walk away once you’ve started listening.

The standout song of the album ‘Atol’ is geared towards the dancefloor and Surgeon packs it densely with so much groove and rhythm. Much of it comes from that glorious hi-hat combination which is masterfully layered over a smooth and rolling bassline. On top of this Surgeon has created a catchy loop that adds just enough texture to the track without overpowering the instrumental.

Hamraj Gulamali


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