The folk here at Wieden + Kennedy are a multitalented lot and strategic planner Oscar Powell is no exception. By day he's devising breakthrough strategies for clients like Nike, by night he is 'splicing rough and gritty new beats from sampled No Wave debris'. Powell is featured in the current issue of alt-music bible The Wire this month.
More Powell info, purchases and downloads (but sadly not fluorescent afro wigs) available from Diagonal Records.
Boomkat said of Powell's latest release 'Untitled' on The Death of Rave label:
"Powell's third release refines his ascetic blend of lawless New York no wave, cold European electronics and late '90s D&B with incisive vision and propulsive torque. The EP's standout 'A Band' emphasises a chimeric indistinction between the "real" textures of sample-spliced guitars and drums and the gritted tension of painstakingly processed electronics, somehow sounding like MMM producing for MARS, whereas the ductile, visceral wormhole of 'Acid' feels more like Bob Ostertag mangling Phuture. At its iciest, the bruxist thump of 'Rider' is an assured nod to Suicide, yet sliced with the precision of prime period Digital or Dom & Optical, whilst the loosely skewed but in-the-pocket groove of 'Oh No New York' is one of few contemporary examples that genuinely augments post punk tropes without merely reaffirming them. And far from stylistic tourism, these tracks are wrought with integrity and guile, forged with awareness of their sub-cultural history and coolly swerving its dead ends with a stoic intelligence and discipline that's sorely lacking from the reams of "yeah, we've got 3000 unreleased tunes on our hard-drive" set of producers: Powell may only have a handful, but they're probably better than yours."
Below is a taster of the Body Music EP that you can stick in your ductile wormhole, described by Boomkat (again) thus:
"If Blast First's Vainio / Väisänen / Vega sessions spawned offspring, there's every chance they would sound something like Powell. Alloying the motorik rock efficiency of Suicide with the dryly stoic purism of Pan Sonic, he's conceived one of the most impressive, refreshingly potent new sounds we've encountered in ages. It's Techno for bored rockers, or rock for jaded Techno fiends, working calloused, industrious grooves with more swagger than a teddy boy on payday, coupled with the kind of stiff, anti-social funk branded by Ancient Methods."