Available on: Kompakt 12″

‘I Don’t Smoke’

The all-singing, all-dancing Matias Aguayo is undoubtedly one of contemporary dance music’s heroes, but sometimes his shtick can be a bit flowery in my opinion.

The I Don’t Smoke EP is Matias’s first proper solo record since 2009, and its title track, unfortunately, is a little on the kitsch side. It’s very well made, with Aguayo’s slight of hand shining through on those subtle synth melodies, but again, it’s a bit too flowery, it’s a bit too wiggly, it’s a bit too Los Updates. I’m sure there are people that will go mad for it, but they’re the same people who eat up Luciano’s Vagabundos nonsense and clap along at techno raves. You know the type. You hate them.

Things pick up once Aguayo’s got that out of his system (maybe Rebelledo gave in and just gave the girl a cigarette). The slutty slink of ‘Comeme Riddim’ sets you up, and the charcoal drum assault of ‘Ninos’ will surely knock you down. Designed for the DJs, it’s the sort of track (and it is a track – no song bullshit here), you could listen to all day. No clapping required. But just when you think this EP’s peaked, it closes on the slowly-building ‘Dance Machine’, which sounds like it was conceived behind some re-wired traffic lights at a New York street party in ’87. Fantastic stuff, and proof that although Matias Aguayo might be best known for his eccentricity, the foundations of his sound are about as rock solid as you can possibly get.

Chris Campbell



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