Since he emerged on Hessle Audio in 2014, Bruce has proven himself one of the UK scene’s most consistently creative new producers. Inhabiting the abstract space between house and techno in the post-dubstep landscape, he approaches percussion and song structure from leftfield, showing up many producers who are happy to merely follow the rules. So far he’s shown himself able to craft tracks of great subtlety as well as abstract bangers for the dancefloor.
In a sense, it’s no surprise that his latest EP for Hemlock packs a surprise. Lead cut Before You Sleep is an ominous lullaby, its plodding kick and yawning bass growl hosting an unexpectedly sweet melody, made all the more tender for its contrast to the industrial atmospherics. In Line is more familiar territory, a featherweight drum workout that revels in minute details, but its fizzing mutations might be too academic for club play. Sweat gives the pack its final twist, its warped bass sweeps dripping with menace, fractured sonics placing the listener deep inside the workings of an infernal machine. There’s an abstract quality to this set which means it’s more suited to avant-leaning listeners, but few can match Bruce right now for bringing consistently fresh sounds to the UK scene.