Mahoney’s vision for Delinquent Delivery is visible on this release, showcasing his talents which range beyond A&R and delving into production. U features five untitled tracks, contrasting thumping dancefloor driven techno with spacey atmospheric ambient tones. With over twenty years experience as a DJ, Mahoney’s ear for precise, engaging rhythms and melancholic tones can be heard throughout U.
A1 sets the tone of U. A thumping kick lays the foundation for the track, with gritty, cutting melodies juxtaposed with polished, pensive tones. Rhythmic structure is a large component of Mahoney’s signature sound, with cleverly placed hats and snares audible on A1. A strong link to the sounds of Detroit sounds of the ’90s is audible here, synonymous with Zenker Brothers et. all.
A2 continues down the path previously set out, with another dance floor directed track. More subtle than previously heard, Mahoney drives the track with a glossy lead, only to break the track up and juxtapose it with a gritty, murky underlying melody. A2 also focuses heavily on rhythmic structure, with well-placed spacing allowing energy to be retracted and reintegrated with more tenacity.
A3 takes U to a different space with an ambient excursion. Mahoney here showcases that he is capable of creating lush, captivating soundscapes which transport the listener to a place of tranquillity. Dark, harrowing undertones are balanced with ethereal swells, maintaining the aura of the record established.
B1 moves back to the dancefloor, with a thumping kick and jagged, piercing tones. Mahoney’s versatility as a producer is evident here, as B1 moves in the same vein as the A-side of U but is completely different in style. Prime-time dance-floor material, this track drives forward with ferocity and grace, cleverly being broken up with sparkling synth tones only to hit back harder than before.
B2 closes out U. A bouncy kick drum sets the tone, with atmospheric, dark swells creating an engaging sonic tapestry. Sparse, delicately placed lustrous tones take the lead, with airy swells contributing to form a wonderful balance of light and darkness. Mahoney’s focus on precision within rhythmic structure is again noticeable here, with rhythmic elements forming their own melodies throughout B2.
U is Stephen Mahoney’s first full release on Delinquent Delivery and captivates the essence of his vision as a producer entirely. Versatile, engaging and polished, U contains five tracks which all compliment one another wonderfully. U is a record which is as useful in a DJ’s record bag as it is for home listening.