Madloch's Sound Avenue rounds out the month of July by welcoming Forty Cats back to the label for her debut EP. With well over a decade's worth of DJ experience, Russian artist Christina Gavrilova aka Forty Cats has been a fixture of her country's nightlife, sharing the stage with Jody Wisternoff, Nick Warren, Yotto, Dave Seaman and more. Christina's production debut landed three years ago via 8bit Music, and in relatively short order the Russian artist has gone on to release projects via Lane 8's This Never Happened, Hernan Cattaneo's Sudbeat Music and Mango Alley. Also finding a home on Sound Avenue, Forty Cats opened the year with a remix of 'Dreaming Home' by Eric Lune, before going on to re-imagine Nopi's 'Hookan Idyll' a few short months later. Now as we enter the year's third quarter, Forty Cats returns to Sound Avenue with her first EP project entitled 'Forest Beast', alongside remixes from Berni Turletti and Weird Sounding Dude.
Although best known for her brand of energetic progressive house, Forty Cats chooses to flex a deeper part of her studio repertoire on 'Forest Beast'. Beginning with dulcet beats and warm, roomy grooves, Christina crafts a narrative of soulful piano stabs and ghostly vocal edits which carry a smooth energy into the main break. Panoramic synth textures, cinematic swells and spacey effects create a lovely sonic eco-system as the interlude evolves, eventually resetting the framework for a late-night finale. Looking to add additional tools for all the adventurous selectors out there, Forty Cats has also included an Intro Version to bring further depth to the release.
Providing the first remix of 'Forest Beast' is Berni Turletti who makes his label debut. Perhaps best known for his releases on Or Two Strangers, Higher States, Sudbeat Music and The Soundgarden, Berni Turletti brings a unique energy and perspective to progressive music. With the backing of Hernan Cattaneo and Nick Warren, the Argentinean artist has been tipped as one of the genre's future stars. With a 2021 highlighted by projects for Droid9, Plattenbank and Mango Alley, the Cordoba resident now adds Sound Avenue to his resume with a gorgeous rendition of 'Forest Beast'. Berni sustains an understated yet confident club energy, reshaping the groove into a funk-fuelled delight, while creamy piano's fade in and out of coherence against a backdrop of evolving textures and enlightening vocal fragments. Looking to bring further emotion to the narrative, the main break melts down to an array of incandescent melodies, planting gentle splashes of serotonin across the one-minute interlude, before ultimately giving way to a soothing finale.
The second and final interpretation of 'Forest Beast' is provided by Weird Sounding Dude who returns to the label for his second appearance. Based in Bangalore, the Indian artist is now considered one of his country's most beloved progressive house producers. As a favourite of the genre's premiere tastemakers, Weird Sounding Dude has compiled an impressive discography with standout releases via Anjunadeep, Hoomidaas, The Soundgarden and Sudbeat Music, while receiving play and support from Hernan Cattaneo, Nick Warren and Guy J. Having made his Sound Avenue debut last year with a remix of 'Union Eterna' by Matias Vila, Weird Sounding Dude now makes a welcome return to the label with an equally impressive take on 'Forest Beast'. The Bangalore resident's relentless curiosity for rhythmic and harmonic experimentation basks in progressive radiance here, as a delirious blur of hook heavy synths, shadowy vocal fragments and wavy arps emerge from a bed of pulsating beats and voluptuous basslines. Its eager optimism peaks across a one-minute interlude, collapsing under its gravity as modulation rises onwards to a thumping drop and hypno-fuelled finale.
Christina reveals more of her creative attitude on the EP's closer 'Infinite Gradient'. Exotic drum arrangements, dubbed out grooves and a smoky architecture ultimately carry you down a meditative rabbit hole, as aquatic arps and spastic effects unite for a fluidly florid finale. Forty Cats effortlessly dodges any typical genre templates here, breaking preconceptions and made-up minds, opting for a heady journey to put a stamp on what would have to be considered her most adventurous release to date.