Michigan wizard John Beltrans many stylistic shifts during his impressive career intersect to great effect on this release, his first for Glasgows Seventh Sign Recordings. The project sees him in fine form, skilful and versatile, capturing a storied artist as he cements his modern sound.
For titular piece Highway, Beltrans Latin lineage and techno heart conjure shuffling, insistent percussion that hugs a hypnotic melody and deep driving bass. The swirling melodic hook progresses into a subtle but evocative string section, encapsulating Beltrans compositional guile in a masterful piece.
Thank Goodness I Found You takes a creative right turn as polyrhythms melt into dreamlike melodies and voices. A unique track, fractured and complex in form, but warm and heartfelt in execution, Beltrans deft touch neatly balances the strange and the soulful.
The solid, compelling Now the Clouds Are Gone opens side two with techno grace, weaving hypnotic melodies into a tense, building riff that drives the piece while retaining Beltrans trademark crafted beauty. Rounding things off is an ambient mix of Thank goodness, Beltran teasing out new forlorn atmospheres as only this producers producer can.
Ranking among Beltrans finest work, this is a milestone of this special artists stellar contribution to electronic music and a fitting addition to the formidable Seventh Sign catalogue.