Various Thoughtless Times Vol. 1

Thoughtless Music is a Toronto-based techno imprint with a decidedly minimal flavour. After the last decade’s expatriation of so many of the city’s finest producers (Mike Shannon, Jeff Milligan, Jeremy P. Caulfield, Jake Fairley, etc.) to Europe, it’s refreshing to see the next generation of Toronto technophiles finally stepping up to the plate and making themselves heard without leaving home. Much of the Thoughtless roster — Eric Downer, Repair, Noah Pred, KiloWatts — have been kicking around for years, perfecting a form of functional, often austere techno that doesn’t really pander to the trends flying out of Berlin nightclubs week after week. Instead, many of the 11 tracks collected here (and made available only as digital MP3s via Beatport.com) belong to a resuscitated pure school of techno that eschews the showiness of the current club minimal, with its electro breaks and off-kilter syncopation, for a synthy, more mechanised old-school approach. For anyone who misses the mid-’90s boon of the Force Inc. roster, or a time right before minimal techno went theoretical and then decided that it ought to be sexy, Thoughtless Times will take you there. (Thoughtless)