Anodyne isn’t strictly a new entity. In fact, the man born Colin Cloughley has releases dating back to the mid 90s, making his career longer than most in the fickle world of electronic music. But since his appearance on a compilation for seminal UK electronica label Skam Records in 1996, Cloughley’s musical activities have slipped below the radar. He’s clearly been keeping busy during that time, though, as he re-emerged last year with a mature and fully-formed sound, drawing heavily on the golden era in which he cut his teeth, but with a technical and compositional know-how which speaks of years of experience.
Cloughley’s return to form, Corrosion, was an album-length homage to the dancefloors of the Warp era; a mixture of majestic techno and breakbeat hardcore which went a long way to recapturing the rush of the new which made that music so influential. Garnering plenty of attention and some high profile remix work, the album is followed this year by a slew of EPs showcasing more disparate sides of the Anodyne sound: the recently released Destruction 808 EP for dancefloor heat, and now the Empires EP on ever-reliable London label Combat Recordings provides a more coolly cinematic experience.
Cloughley may have been absent from the scene for more than a decade, but his return is strangely timely; the Anodyne sound, while drawing on the sonic tropes of the 90s, finds touchstones with the searing industrial techno of the Downwards camp and the paranoiac bass pressure of dubstep’s more screwfaced exponents. Not to mention his being embraced by the establishment figures he clearly admires, from Rob Hall of Skam to Warp stalwarts Autechre and The Black Dog. Colin spoke to The Quietus from his native Ireland to discuss what’s changed in the past 15 years – and what’s stayed the same.
Empires E.P. Remixes Part 2
Empires E.P. Remixes Part 1
Witchfight (10 years of Combat Recordings)