Mike Van Rose: Hitchhiker review – Soundtrack to your January detox
Mike Van Rose
Hitchhiker, Mike Van Rose’s debut LP, is bookended with Jvlia and Portobello, two anchoring locations lending a timestamp of its creation. The geographical distance between these places (the producer’s native Portugal and Ireland) is captured in the varied sonic terrain of the 12 tracks.
A unique quality of techno is its ability, via rhythmic tones, to remove contemporary context from the songs. This is the case with Hitchhiker, as it rarely embodies the present. It’s apt, then, for Time Travel, an exuberant instrumental, to be the highlight.
The electronica-fuelled elation on Something Free’s interplay of throwback major-chord synth with fuzzed drum-machine harks back to The Beloved’s 1993 hit, Sweet Harmony. Naturally, this warrants a welcome trip down memory lane.
Elsewhere, Spectrum 48k recalls the trippy soundtrack of Mario pacing through animated environments, populated by vicious piranha plants and gold coins hidden in conspicuous floating blocks, whilst clad in his red overalls.
Ultimately, the adrenaline-inducing instrumentals created by Van Rose are ideal for anyone adopting a post-Christmas January detox involving prolonged treadmill sessions.