Since the presentation
of Hyperdex-1-Sect on the Sound-Line Vol. 3 compilation, everybody had
been eagerly awaiting the first CD by this alluring collaboration project
between Sevren Ni-Arb (X Marks The Pedwalk, etc.) and Jonathan Sharp (New
Mind, Bio-Tek, Hexedene, etc.) And I confirm you it was worth the
wait! "Metachrome" is nothing but a 4-track mini-CD with 4
bonus remixes by each member of the project. This release will certainly
not win first prize in the sleeve desing and artwork, but the music could!
Fans of X Mark The Pedwalk's last two releases will for sure treasure this
one. Others will simply charge the master of going Euro-dance.
Personally, I just admire the utmost perfect production work of the songs
and their poignant and polished arrangements. The disc rips straight
into it with 'Mind', a track all Side-Line readers should know by now,
but the best is yet to come! Estefania's splended voice gets a very
prior position on this release and this just wets my appetite for more.
To my mind, Hyperdex-1-Sect is nothing but pure sensory joy! Grandiose
melodies meshing together with extremely catchy sensual feamle choruses.
Superb advanced music rhythmed by upbeat dancey electronic beats and bass
drums. 'Death Is Not The End' and more especially 'Les Amants' are
pearls you rapdily get addicted to. X Marks the Pedwalk shows us
in his great remixes how far he is able to underline the beauty of his
girlfriend's voice and adds his, now typical piano lines and dynamic kicking
beats. New Mind abuses once again his devilsh bass blasts and brings
some ordered chaos in the rhythm arrangements rednering a rougher and wilder
profile of the songs. Hyperdex-1-Sect is no doubt the revelation
of the year! A must have.
(Side Line, No. 22 - No.2 1996)
Yet another collaboration featuring Sevren Ni-Arb. This time around he's teamed up with the brains behind New Mind, Jonathan Sharp. The music behind this project is what was salvaged from Sharp's involvement with Cyber-Tec Project mixed together with the audio stimulatory productions of X Marks the Pedwalk. The vocals are shared between Sevren and Estefania (who also did vocals on XMTP's Meshwork CD) and the music lies somewhere between solid electro and the unique blend of techno that Sevren has been dabbling in. There are four original pieces on "Metachrome", 'Mind', 'Les Amants', 'Hear Nothing', and 'Death is Not the End'. 'Mind', the opening track, is a catchy piece with a great tech-beat, piano breakdowns, scratchy rhythms, and loads of sounds that intrude and fade away. 'Les Amants' is the first track to feature Estefania's vocals placed a top a steady, driving beat and moody sequences. The atmospheric begining of 'Hear Nothing' give way to a smooth, slow rhythms, and rich vocals by Sevren. For a slow-paced song, 'Hear Nothing' still plays off well, beckoning the listener to delve into the sequences and get lost amongst the subtle melodies. Reverting back towards the sound of 'Mind', 'Death is Not the End' is an up-tempo song with various unique synth sounds working in unison, blending together to form a piece loaded with energy, yet gentle on the ears. The second half of this MCD is comprised of two XMTP mixes and two New Mind mixes. The result are tracks that retain most of the original sound, but lean more towards the sound of the mixer. What you almost end up with are two tracks by each New Mind and XMTP. There are rumors afloat that more mixes might arise, possibly by the like of FLA and cEvin Key, but we'll just have to wait and see what happens. In the meantime, keep an eye out for this MCD to be released in the states in the near future. (Industrial Bible 1997)
Hyperdex-1-Sect is Sevren Ni-Arb (X
Marks the Pedwalk, U-Tek, Ringtailed Snorter, etc.) and Johnathan Sharp
(New Mind, Bio-Tek, Hexedene, etc.). With the coming together of
the electro scene's two most prolific artists (the two have contributed
to close to fifteen different projects combined - excluding production
and remixes!), one can only expect the absolute best. Hyperdex-1-Sect
deliver exactly that. The comparisons to XMTP's Meshwork are obvious
here as Estanfania who provided vocals on that album returns with to accompany
Hyperdex-1-Sect. However, Johnathan Sharp's influence on this record
is prominent as is it much darker and more foreboding than Meshwork.
Metachrome has XMTP's obvious techno slant, driving dance beats, airy synths
and Sevren's signature vocals contrasted with Sharp's heavier percussive
accents and powerful rhythms. One could say that this album is a
great blend of XMTP's Meshwork and New Mind's Forge. The U.S. version
of Metachrome contains all eight tracks from the original 1997 import plus
three bonus remixes from Download and Empirion.
- Although, this EP is basically four songs with two or three version of each, it a great listen from start to finish and never gets the least bit repetitive. Empirion's remix of 'Mind' makes buying the U.S. version worth every penny. Download does two new versions of 'Hear Nothing', which are very mellow compared to rest of the disc, but also quite good. If you missed buying this as an import, here is your chance to pick it up again with three new tracks. The always brilliant Sevren and Sharp certainly do not disappoint, and hopefully there will be a new Hyperdex-1-Sect release soon.
(Industrial Bible - Domestic version review)
Hyperdex-1-Sect is a collaboration between
Sevren Ni-Arb of X Marks the Pedwalk and Jonathan Sharp of New Mind
and Cyber-Tec. Metachrome, the first EP from this duo, is based upon work
originally intended for Cyber-Tec Project. Consequently, the music here
sounds somewhat reminiscent of "Let Your Body Die" in its leanings towards
techno sounds. In keeping with Sevren's current philosophy, both Sevren's
and guest vocalist Loretta Sterling's vocals are usually untreated. Originally,
Metachrome was to include remixes by FLA and Cevin Key, but this disk contained
only the four original tracks plus two mixes each by Sevren and Jonathan.
Unfortunately, Metachrome often sounds more like Hi-NRG music such as Jam
& Spoon than it does the cross between EBM and techno it was meant
to be. The big exception is "Mind," an incredibly successful example
of innovation in EBM. The mixing of various vocals styles and the variations
within the track keep it from getting repetitive, while the build-up to
several energetic crescendos keeps the dance floor packed. A few of the
other tracks aren't too bad, such as the original mix of "Les Amants,"
but nothing extraordinary.
- I recommend Metachrome for DJ's purely on the basis of "Mind" (or better yet, the compilation Soundline Vol. 3, which contains "Mind" plus other great stuff). For regular collectors, I'd steer clear of this release unless you have no problems buying a disc for one song alone. (Graven Space)
Hyperdex-1-Sect is a side-project involving Jonathan Sharp of Bio-Tek/New Mind, and Sevren Ni-Arb of X Marks The Pedwalk. The vocals are provided by Sevren, accompanied by female vocals from Estefania (also from XMTP). Sevren's voice draws so much emotion from me. No other voice affects me nearly as much. Metachrome begins with Mind, which starts with a groovier beat and almost whispered vocals. The voice bursts into a louder near scream, almost always forcing my eyes shut, followed by a smooth voice trailing after it, demonstrating how expressive his voice can be. And never before has a cymbal crash been used so effectively. Enter Les Amants, which brings in the smooth, errorless techno that also heralds Estefania's entrance, with her beautiful, and very distinct, voice drifting in on the chorus. Hear Nothing is a slower, pulsing song, alone in the dark and adrift with a distant whisper. Probably the strongest atmosphere on Metachrome. Death Is Not The End has some of the cleanest vocals, and most coherent lyrics, Sevren's done. The rhythm and melody to the song is never tiring. The problem with the song is that it's the last. Fortunately, there are also 4 remixes of the songs, 2 by XMTP and 2 by New Mind. The XMTP remix of Death Is Not The End turns it into a duet between Sevren and Estefania, serving as one of the best techno-dance songs I've heard, and my favourite track. Mind is also remixed by XMTP, but completely redoes the song, with Estefania singing one part of the original, and it becomes a very echno-laden song. But, oh, so good. The New Mind remixes are a little harder, but unfortunately don't do as much for the songs. This is probably the longest review I'll ever write for 4 songs and a couple remixes, but this is one of the best CDs in a while and I'm not near to doing it justice. Metachrome will hopefully end up being the first part of 2 Hyperdex-1-Sect releases sometime in the future. I can't even imagine having *8* songs as good as these. (Effigy Zine)
HYPERDEX-1-SECT might very well be an unknown name, but Sevren Ni-Arb (XMTP) and Jonathan Sharp (NEW MIND) certainly aren't novices when it goes down to writing some highly infectious danceable electro-body music. Their collaboration's results appear on "Metachrome" in form of 4 original trax plus 2 remixes from each bands, 8 spinning tunes in total! Needless to say this is the highest quality electro dance music with little cute sounds placed among well thought out and effective sequences. XMTP remixes especially effective utilize female vocals by Estefania, basically if you like the last XMTP offer "Meshwork" this is it! NEW MIND remixes mark some harder beats but raw side of their is perfectly matched up with melodic sequences. The outcome is astonishing dynamics - perfect for dirty dancing, yeah! Truly excellent album and they say it's only the beginning of this fruitful collaboration. (Cyber Wounded - April 1997)
Oh my god. This has been my favourite CD since I got it, and has been played and put on repeat more than any other CD since.. well.. since X Marks The Pedwalk's "Meshwork". This is Jonathan Sharp from Bio-Tek and New Mind working with Sevren Ni-Arb and Estafania of X Marks The Pedwalk. Sevren's voice does so much to me. I couldn't adore it more. 'Death Is Not The End' is the defining track, due to the melody of Sevren's vocals and simply the motion of the song. 'Mind's beat (and that one cymbal crash.. purrr) and rhythm with Sevren's almost funky-rappy vocals through the verse, followed up by somewhat harsher yelling, coupled with a softer voice beneath. Am I being too obvious with my gushing? You can recognize aspects that New Mind brought to the otherwise more (new) X Marks The Pedwalk techno sound, and whoever it was that said, "Let's get New Mind and XMTP together" needs to be making more decisions in the music scene. Of course, those who don't like the new techno sound of X Marks The Pedwalk will probably like this even less because it pretty much goes fully into the techno-dance realm, just that it's eons better than anything IN that realm. Especially the XMTP remixes, which are all-out dance music, and SO damn good. The remix of 'Death Is Not The End' turns it into a duet between Estefania and Sevren, which went over pretty well at the local gay club I brought it to. Erm. Not that I went to a gay club. I could be saying so much more, but this is long enough.. ahem. Suffice it to say, if you like the new X Marks The Pedwalk sound, or amazingly smooth male and female vocals over beautiful electronic techno, electronic music, this is a *MUST* have. The only problem lies in that it's only 4 songs + 4 remixes of those songs. The scary thing is that those 4 songs are worth more than 30 of most other bands.. (from Storming The Base Of The Alien Foe on CKMS 100.3 Waterloo, Ontario, Canada - taken from XMTP homepage)
This is simply the US domestic issue
of the previously only available by import release of H1Sect. For those
of you who don't know by now, Hyperdex 1 Sect is a project that consists
of Sevren Ni-Arb(XMTP, UTEK, PAX, etc) and Jonathan Sharpe(New Mind, Biotek,
GunHed, Hexedene etc). This cd basically consists of four songs, and then
7 remixes of them. The domestic version contains some incredibly impressive
mixes by download and empirion, as well as the xmtp and new mind mixes
that can be found on the import version. Very impressive dancey electro,
with a switch off between male and female vocals. Truly an enchanting cd
that will surely have the club floor fanatics in a rush. I just cant tell
you how much I have enjoyed this release. If you are a fan of either X
Marks or New Mind, you are sure to love this as well, with the masters
of electro combining their efforts together to mount a front against mind
aching drivel. If you're an avid collector or someone new to xmtp/new
mind stuff, you need to pick this up even if you have the import, as the
intensitiy of the download and empirion mixes is high on the asskicking
meter. With the release of New Mind "Forge", XMTP "Drawback", and Hyperdex
1 Sect "Metachrome", our friends in Europe sure know how to keep us happy.
Hyperdex-1-Sect is a side-project involving
Jonathan Sharp of Bio-Tek/New Mind, and Sevren Ni-Arb of X Marks The Pedwalk.
The vocals are provided by Sevren, accompanied by female vocals from Estefania
(also from XMTP)...Sevren's voice draws so much emotion from me. No other
voice affects me nearly as much. "Metachrome" begins with 'Mind', which
starts with a groovier beat and almost whispered vocals. The voice bursts
into a louder near scream, almost always forcing my eyes shut, followed
by a smooth voice trailing after it, demonstrating how expressive his voice
can be. And never before has a cymbal crash been used so effectively. Enter
'Les Amants', which brings in the smooth, errorless techno that also heralds
Estefania's entrance, with her beautiful, and very distinct, voice drifting
in on the chorus. 'Hear Nothing' is a slower, pulsing song, alone in the
dark and adrift with a distant whisper. Probably the strongest atmosphere
on Metachrome. 'Death Is Not The End' has some of the cleanest vocals,
and most coherent lyrics, Sevren's done. The rhythm and melody to the song
is never tiring. The problem with the song is that it's the last. Fortunately,
there are also 4 remixes of the songs, 2 by XMTP and 2 by New Mind. The
XMTP remix of 'Death Is Not The End' turns it into a duet between Sevren
and Estefania, serving as one of the best techno-dance songs I've heard,
and my favourite track. 'Mind' is also remixed by XMTP, but completely
redoes the song, with Estefania singing one part of the original, and it
becomes a very techno-laden song. But, oh, so good. The New Mind remixes
are a little harder, but unfortunately don't do as much for the songs.
This is probably the longest review I'll ever write for 4 songs and a couple
remixes, but this is one of the best CDs in a while and I'm not near to
doing it justice. Metachrome will hopefully end up being the first part
of 2 Hyperdex-1-Sect releases sometime in the future. I can't even imagine
having *8* songs as good as these.
(Antithes of Grinding Into Emptiness)
Although I was never lucky enough to
own the import of this when it first came out on MCT, after listening to
this, I can't help but wish that I had. I was never really that much
into New Mind (execpt for his remix of Birmingham 6's Policestate),
and that's what turned me off about this disc. I did manage to purchase
the US version when I came out, and I was, quite frankly, blown away. Hyperdex
is the perfect mix of the X Marks the Pedwalk style with that of New Mind's.
The four original songs are very good in their own right, but the real
highlight of this collaboration are the remixes. Both of the artists
involved take the pieces and meld them into their own style. XMTP
adds vocals by Estefania, and turns the music more towards what you might
find on Drawback or Meshwork. New Mind's mixes are a little more
agressive, but not too "in your face." So, basically, it's
like having brand new XMTP and New Mind tracks. Unlike the original
version, we find three extra mixes of the tracks by different artists.
Emperion messes around with 'Mind', and Download provides two mixes of
'Hear Nothing'. Quite simply, this is an amazing CD, and if you're a fan
of any of the aforementioned bands, this cannot be missed.
(Colonel Toasty of Grinding Into Emptiness)
Consisting of the joined forces of Severn Ni-Arb (XMTP) and Jonathan Sharp (Hexedene, New Mind, Bio-Tek), Hyperdex-1-Sect combines Euro-techno with the dark sounds of the black-clad dance scene. The result is an eleven song EP consisting of four tracks nad their remixes. Although Severn provides vocals on the majority of tracks, the real kicker is Estafania with her banshee beckoning croon. As the secret ingredient to this disc, her tantalizing voice only appears on four tracks leaving you begging for more, but happy you got anything at all. The remixes are fairly divided up with XMTP, New Mind and Download credited for two each and Empirion jumping in to remix 'Mind'. Download's two not-so-different renditions of 'Hear Nothing' get poor placement not only falling consecutively, but also being the last songs. Unfortunately, the position is warranted as the tracks are far enough from the rest of the CD to be disruptive rather than the usual cacophonous sound expected from the Puppy project. My favorite songs would have to be 'Les Amants' along with the New Mind mix of it. Not only does Estafania sing on both versions, the programming is a combination of skill and ecstasy. There are enough breaks and fills to keep the ears and the body tuned in without it becoming another background techno tune. For some reason 'Death Is Not the End' is the only track remixed by both Severn and Jonathan giving three different artistic interpretations of the same song. If anything, the downfall of "Metachrome" is you only get four songs, but the four you get are enough for now. (Outburn, Issue #7)
Hyperdex-1-Sect is the result of Jonathan Sharp (of New Mind) and Sevren Ni-Arb (of X Marks the Pedwalk) joining forces to create brilliant electronica, with female vocals provided by XMTP's lustrous Estefania. "Metachrome" consists of four different songs, with seven additional remixes. It sounds like the band is more related to XMTP simply because of the amount of piano and female vocals, not to mention the fact that Sevren is singing in all of the songs. In other words, if you like XMTP's "Drawback", then this could be considered a superb extension of that. 'Mind' sounds like it came straight off of the "Drawback" album with the similar use of delicate electronics and stunning piano. Sevren's vocals seem to flow perfectly into the mix, even when it sounds like a distant shouting during the chorus. On the following song, 'Les Amants', it sounds like Sevren took some singing tips from Sharp since now he's practically screaming angrily throughout most of the song. Estefania lends her heavenly vocals to the chorus, adding a lot to the upbeat tempo and light XMTP trademark synths weaving their way through the mixture. On the third track, 'Hear Nothing', Hyperdex-1-Sect slow things down a bit, relying on a breakbeat with intricate bleeps, occasional piano, and underlined with thundering bassy synths. The band speeds thing back up with the next song, 'Death Is Not the End', which starts rolling when razor-sharp synths make their presence felt, while sanguine vocals and recurrent samples (a woman saying "Death is not the end" over and over) really dominate the song. The rest of the album is comprised of remixes done by the likes of X Marks the Pedwalk, New Mind, Empirion, and even Download. Download remixes 'Hear Nothing' twice, sensing that a song revolves best around an incredible breakbeat. While adding noisy rhythm patterns and an orchestral loop that would make even Beethoven proud, the clamoring breakbeat continues and is remarkably enhanced as the song progresses. (Voltage, Issue #7)
Four tunes, and 7 remixes by X Marks the Pedwalk, New Mind, Download and Empirion. The original pieces show a nice touch on orchestral techno (kinda like X Marks), with lots of cool melodic and harmonic experimentation. Indeed, this is crafty fare, indeed. Each of the four songs is distinct from the others, and yet Hyperdex-1-Sect has still managed to notch its own sound. Well done. The remixes are innovative as the acts who made them. Complimentary, and yet completely new visions of the songs. This is a cool set which shows the potential for variations on a theme, as practiced by good mixers. (Aiding & Abetting, issue #157, 4/98)
Hyperdex-1-Sect has finally been released
in the U.S. and it is spectacular!
- Jonathan Sharp, (New Mind) and Sevren Ni-Arb, (Xmarks the Pedwalk) collaborated to create four of the finest dance tracks in both of their lengthy careers.
- Each one is intricately laid out and extremely powerful, combining the very best aspects of each band's recent works(such as Estefania on more than one track!). This alone is worth the price of the disc, but as an added bonus X Marks and New Mind contribute their own remixes (as well as two mediocre remixes by cevin Key on the U.S. release from 21st circuitry) that are even more danceable than the originals. A must have for fans either musician. (The New Empire)
the first release by Hyperdex-1-Sect, a duo consisting of Sevren Ni-Arb
(of X Marks The Pedwalk, amongst other things) and Jonathan Sharp (of New
Mind, amongst other things). It's also the first release from MCT Productions,
a new UK-based industrial label, who've got some interesting stuff in the
- Given the pedigree of the two halves of Hyperdex-1-Sect, it comes as no surprise that Metachrome is really rather good. There's no huge surprises in store here, but there's certainly many worse things to be than a fusion of XMTP's Meshwork and New Mind's Forge. Well, to call it a pure fusion of the two sounds wouldn't be entirely accurate, it's closer to the mark to say it's a fusion of the two given a marked techno slant. Since XMTP's recent direction has also had a strong techno influence, the first impression you get when listening to Metachrome is that it's rather closer to Meshwork than Forge. In addition to the sound being lighter than that of recent New Mind, the vocals here are either Sevren's or those of Estefania, who provided the female vocals on Meshwork. However, Sharp's contribution becomes more apparent on repeated listening, both in the sound being darker than that of Meshwork, and numerous stylistic aspects that are very clearly New Mind-ish.
- OK, enough musing over who did what, on to the music itself. The EP contains four distinct tracks, plus two mixes each by XMTP and New Mind. It's an interesting way of doing things - they co-operate to create the tracks, then each takes a couple and makes it the way they'd have done it if they'd been working solo. It's this as much as anything that makes who did what clear. The first track is "Mind", a quality piece of techno-tinged EBM that bears more than a slight resemblance to some of the material from Cyber-Tec's self-titled debut EP, particularly in the case of the vocals and lyrics, which are very De Meyer-ish in places. Given Sharp's involvement with the first incarnation of Cyber-Tec, it's not too much of a surprise, and I understand that the resemblance was not unintentional, perhaps as a way of showing that Sharp and Ni-Arb alone could do the Cyber-Tec thing better than the full Cyber-Tec line-up could.
- After the "EBM with techno trimmings" of "Mind", "Les Amants" is a more overt EBM/techno crossover. It fuses a harder verse with Sevren's vocals with a light, techno-style chorus featuring Estefania's vocals. As with "Mind", the programming's excellent, fairly heavily layered, with lots of nice classy touches. However, if there's any track on this EP that I have a problem with, it has to be "Les Amants" - the chorus is just a bit too light and bouncy for me, a little too 2 Unlimited. Still, that's a minor gripe. "Hear Nothing" isn't quite as light, and reminds me more than anything of a dark, claustrophobic take on something from Lassigue Bendthaus's Render (an album which seems to retrospectively have become the root of all EBM/techno crossover).
- The fourth and final (unremixed) track, "Death Is Not The End", has a much more obviously New Mind-influenced sound. Basically it sounds like Ni-Arb providing vocals for a New Mind track. Given that the title is quite clearly Sharp's, as is the prominently placed "Death is not the end" sample, I wouldn't be at all surprised to discover that this was Sharp's music with Sevren's lyric and vocal.
- The first of the two XMTP remixes sees "Mind" given a serious working over. Estefania's vocals replace those of Sevren Ni-Arb, and also add some additional lyrics to those in the original track. Musically the XMTP remix is a more open, spacious affair than the original. It's much more obviously a techno track, and is almost minimalistic in places. The second XMTP remix, of "Death Is Not The End" takes a similar approach, stripping the track down, although not to quite the same extent. Both vocals from the original remain, as does the rather nice piano line, which seems more prominent in this remix once the other layers have been stripped off. Both remixes are excellent, taking the tracks in new directions without mauling them in the process.
- The first of Sharp's remixes is of "Les Amants", and this takes a more direct approach to remixing, adding lots of New Mind-ish atmospherics and a pounding breakbeat. While not as subtle as the XMTP remixes, it does stamp Sharp's own sound firmly on the track without shattering it in the process. The New Mind remix of "Death Is Not The Answer" didn't really have to alter the track much, since it was very much a Sharp track to begin with, but the remix gives it some extra "oomph" while throwing in a handful of interesting samples.
- So, looking back over the EP, we have four good tracks and four good remixes and my only real problem was the slightly over-bouncy chorus to the original mix of "Les Amants". On the face of it, this should be a recipe for a very high rating indeed. After all, it's eight tracks by two artists whose work I like a great deal, and they're all good. However, it's this uniform quality that in the end means I can't rate this as highly as I would Forge or Meshwork. They're all good tracks, but there's nothing truly outstanding here, nothing that grabs you by the throat, slaps you in the face, and stops you dead in
the track in the same way that, to give two appropriate examples, XMTP's "Facer" or New Mind's "Furnace" do. While there are no tracks that you skip, neither are there any that you stick on auto-repeat for hours on end. Oh well, I guess eight quality tracks will do for now, although I hope there's a chance of more material from Hyperdex-1-Sect in the future. (© Al Crawford)