EP Review: The Hatch Series - Various Artists

The Hatch Series is the first in a planned annual compilation series from DhARMA, a new label that has already impressed with a couple of their releases this year.

Made up of five tracks from five different artists it's a relatively eclectic set showcasing DhARMA's progressive approach to A&R. The EP opens with a blues-influenced IDM track from Kyson. There is a little hint of Nicolas Jaar to 'Drifting On By', with a soulful vocal and a slow, textured feel to the production work.

Atiko Misaki's 'Do You Remember Me' is all gentle piano chords and relaxed trumpet, pleasingly jazzy and left-field and even slower than the EP's opening. In contrast 'Midnight Travellers' by Tibalt is a little more upbeat, a striking gothic-electro-prog-opera piece. It may be a little less universal than Misaki's track but the pounding drum-set snares and eighties synths aren't without their charms.

Next up is Silly Rabbit with 'Subsonic Sunset'. It is a mildly Germanic glitch-pop piece, full of big ambient noises and synthetic drums but it never quite seems to get to its destination for me..

The EP is rounded out with 'Beta' by Skai Nine, and it's a pretty good summary of where DhARMA ultimately seem to have their heads as a label. It's experimental electronic music that manages to be greater than the sum of its parts, a whirling cacophony of gentle sounds that comes together to create a softly stuttering pop record. It concludes a short, interesting statement of intent with the first two tracks proving particularly enduring.

The Hatch Series is released on 1 October through DhARMA. Preview the release below through Soundcloud or pre-order from DhARMA here.