Back in February, global broadcasters Boiler Room visited Sheffield to celebrate the history and heritage of electronic music in the Steel City. Of course, the bleep behemoth that is Warp Records had a significant presence, but it wouldn’t have been a true reflection of the local scene without Central Processing Unit – releasing techno and electro 12″s from B12 to Sync 24, the label has been flying the flag for the city since 2012.
With CPU representatives playing both parts of the dual broadcast, it was a celebration of Sheffield music new and old. The thing is, nobody based there has actually released on the label. DMX Krew (London), Automatic Tasty (Dublin), Annie Hall (Detroit), Jensen Interceptor (Sydney), Maelstrom (Paris/Nantes), Nadia Struiwigh (Rotterdam); records from all four corners of the globe have materialised on CPU, but curiously, none from the town it calls home. Well, until now.
96 Back, real name Evan Majumdar-Swift, was practically an unknown quantity ahead of that aforementioned Boiler Room appearance. Search the name online and you’ll see someone relatively youthful and fresh-faced, but the impending, synaptic firing debut on CPU demonstrates a production style beyond his years. On a mind-altering, cybernetic EP, penultimate track ‘050’ is noxious compared to the rest: plunging classic grime tropes into an electro framework, the Steel City resident fuses distorted bass stabs and 8-bit synths with his sludgy, neck-snapping groove.
Provisional Electronics is out next month on Central Processing Unit.