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Delusions Of Grandeur
2 X 12" (INCL CD)

Toby Tobias has been responsible for some fine quality music over the past 10 years with labels such as Rekids, Nang, Let’s Play House and Quintessentials all dropping his unique brand of raw, analogue house and techno. A DJ’s DJ who always seems to pull out a lesser known gem and make it sound like a classic, Toby knows his music as well as his studio, inside out. We’ve been proud to deliver three EP’s from him on Delusions but we all felt the time was right for a full length, especially considering that 7 years have passed since his debut LP Space Shuffle on Rekids. Toby fully embraced the scope and breadth that an LP affords a producer, holing up in his Hackney studio and losing himself in his machines. Rising Son is the result of those sessions and it’s brilliant!

From the opening machine funk of The Wonder featuring vocals from Atwell we can hear that Toby is quite sure about the direction he’s taken for the LP. 808 beats bring vintage electro vibes whilst Atwell’s vocal hints at the golden era of Chicago house, adding a soulful touch to the rigid groove. Love Affair continues the theme of off-world utopia where the droids have a heart and soul and sing torch songs of love lost, the Moroder-esque influences bringing a retro sheen to the LP. As we continue through tracks such as Sloflava and Sending Signals we find blissful, downtempo jams which perfectly soundtrack this imagined night time world which Toby seems so happy to immerse himself and his listeners in.

I Robot follows, providing the one cover version on the LP from the Alan Parsons Project as well as being an LP defining focal point. A track which shows that when the machines are working for you, it could just be a perfect world. But Broken Computer soon shows us what can happen when things go wrong. Incidentally, this is from a genuine computer crash which Toby managed to capture using his phone. A beautiful glitch in the system which spewed out such a mournful noise and a very happy accident that would be completely impossible to create if you set out to try.

As we continue we’re treated to the likes of Friday Analogue Jam, Whisper It and Weird Danger, all echoing bleeps, squelching bass notes, heavenly pads and precision beats. In some ways we get a feeling of a land that time forgot, in others something of sublime beauty and futurism. That Toby can paint pictures with his music in this way speaks volumes, knowing instinctively when to draw out a mood or feeling or flip things on their head to command your attention and beg another listen. And another.....

Published: September 22, 2015