A jump from the oblique and experimental PAN imprint to the relatively orthodox Hyperdub label signalled a change for Lee Gamble and his oeuvre. Having released a trio of drifting, introspective and off-the-grid LPs, Gamble pondered the recent socio-political climate and decided to react by invigorating his sound; his desire was to ratchet up the sonic pressure without sacrificing too much of what makes his music singularly his own.
While his prior output focused on what the producer and DJ has described as the signal or idea of the music, Mnestic Pressure is his attempt at applying a sense of force, aligning his tracks to the grid and integrating recognizable genre forms. "Ghost" recollects Gamble's first love of old school jungle, while "Istian" evokes a slowed down UK garage shuffle. Most of the tracks feature either more distinct melodic content (see "A tergo Real") or pronounced, sometimes explosive, beats ("UE8," "23 Bay Flips" and "East Sedducke"). Yet, Gamble eschews traditional time signatures, favouring oblique rhythms and ornamented pads.
That he's able to maintain a fine balance between the surreal and the straight showcases the producer's keen ear and adroitness at arrangement. Mnestic Pressure feels like a synthesis of electronic music's best bits woven together in an intricate pattern, expertly, as very few producers can. (Hyperdub)