Lost & Found – Dedication EP Review

The UK house scene really is quite a mixed bag, as are the majority of the Beatport charts for EDM in general, there’s some absolute gems out there, but there is also some absolute soulless nonsense too. Lost & Found is no stranger to the UK underground music scenes, but he is surprisingly new to making music; this is the first ever release from Lost & Found, but you would never believe it from the unique territory trodden and impacting massive deep house sound to be found on the three track Dedication EP. The EP is being released through Switched On Records, which is owned by a gentleman who goes by the name of S.E.F., whom you may have heard of if you listened to BBC Radio 1 in the latter part of 2012.

Lost & Found and myself both come from completely different walks of life, yet have somehow ended up at a similar place in life where our paths have crossed unexpectedly. I’m a musician, producer and vocalist myself, I don’t listen to as much music these days as people may expect, I use that time to focus on my own music instead, but lately I’ve found myself listening to The Edit Show, a radio show hosted by Lost & Found, after having met him through Twitter, he showcases the best in house from across the world and occasionally drops one of his own tracks into the live show just to surprise listeners. Lost & Found is quite different from my own music; I make pop-rock with an industrial electronic twist, he makes deep house — with a very uniquely musical touch, from the moment I first heard it I understood that he was a music artist making house music and not just another wannabe producer fiddling with presets and loops. Before this point I actually thought that EDM had become overdone by the recent boom in its popularity and sudden amount of producers jumping on the seemingly oblivion-bound bandwagon, but Lost & Found doesn’t follow trends and doesn’t care for genre snobbery so long as it is a top-drawer track.

The Dedication EP

My relationship with the Dedication EP from Lost & Found has been a very unusual one from the beginning, I’ve heard this record grow from mere little ideas being played in real-time in Ali’s London studio to commercial sounding mastered songs ready to be released. I can recount at least a dozen occasions when Ali has called me late at night whilst I’ve been programming or working on my own music to share what he’s been doing or a few ideas he’s had. The Dedication EP was created and mastered in Ali’s studio, he has been the only person involved on this record from beginning to end; Solitude breeds creativity and the darker side of the human mind is allowed to run rampant alongside the lighter side in a person, this results in dark yet extremely melodic music as Lost & Found has shown with the Dedication EP. The reception to the EP has been great and has picked up a lot of positive comments from various other publications. This EP is dedicated to several people as you may have guessed from the title, this EP is dedicated to the late Martin Dawson and Shawn Francis, the title is also a nod to how much dedication in every aspect is required to be a self-produced music artist.

No Regular Jam

Hitting play floods your ears with organic thumping percussion with unusual depth and what is sure to become a fan favourite with the layered up kick drum, Lost & Found does percussion especially well thanks to a background in the garage music genre. The triumphant “don’t call it a comeback, I’ve been here for years!” are the first words uttered on this record from a vocal sample taken from LL Cool J’s hit record ‘Mama Said Knock You Out’, this is quickly followed up with “I’m gonna rock this land!”, again from ‘Mama Said Knock You Out’, a very bold statement from Lost & Found and an indication of where he has been and where he is going. The synths for me are the sound of modern city nightlife with playful synth stabs, the chiming synth melody combines with the bass to produce a very enjoyable record which would be at home on the soundtrack of a racing game, the club or on your home hi-fi, this track will hook people who don’t typically enjoy electronic music due to the majority being somewhat lacking in musicality, and it will even ensnare some hip-hop fans with the LL Cool J vocal sample.

The Last Laugh

‘The Last Laugh’ is a clap infused track which was born to make you want to get up and dance, and that’s the ultimate objective for any artist of this genre in my opinion, the well-produced low-end from the tight mix and mastering makes a lot of independent house producers’ tracks sound very small by comparison thanks to Ali’s brilliant handiwork. This well structured heavyweight peak time track features no vocal samples yet has an almost verse-chorus song structure which makes it tremendously catchy and addictive to listen to if you’re familiar with instrumentals, a very good introduction to EDM if you’ve yet to get acquainted. I expect this one to do especially well in the club scene thanks to the hefty kick, a melody you won’t be forgetting any time soon, tight harmonics and of course the rich grooving bass.

Time Never Waits

As with ‘No Regular Jam’ and ‘The Last Laugh’, ‘Time Never Waits’ is a darkly memorable and enslaving track which stands out from a sea of mediocrity found throughout much of the genre. This track features a stuttered female vocal which makes the words incomprehensible and becomes more of an instrument, this vocal arrangement is especially striking alongside the punchy drums seemingly combining electronic and organic percussive elements which wouldn’t be out of place in a sprawling soundscape. ‘Time Never Waits’ remains focused and entrancing to the listener yet very danceable thanks to the animated yet natural rhythm.

I’ve always had a strong interest in electronic music as I enjoy using computers to create works of art and communicate feelings or experiences, as such it made me very happy to see such a good friend’s record sitting on iTunes in the New Singles & EPs area, a very appropriate and pleasing place to find his record.

Lost & Found's Dedication EP in the New Singles & EPs Section on iTunes

Lost & Found’s MPC style workflow and approach to music with his Maschine leads to non-quantized and ungridded rhythmic percussion patterns which really groove thanks to his playing all of the rhythms rather than programming them. The fusion of man-made percussive work and uniquely original melodies played on his little family of synths make this music which causes even someone who isn’t familiar with the genre or a fan of it to thoroughly enjoy the euphonious experimentation that Lost & Found maintains throughout the Dedication EP. This isn’t just another 4/4 muddy puddle of sounds which has plagued a lot of places I’ve found music in the past, this is a fresh take on a genre by a musician rather than just another DJ producer throwing tracks out there with very little care for the quality of music itself.

Personally I’m looking forward to seeing where Lost & Found goes next in his music, Lost & Found definitely tore up the rulebook with this one but I’m betting that a lot of people are going to be trying to figure out how he achieves his unique signature style! If you’re after fresh sounds designed from the ground up, you can purchase Lost & Found’s Dedication EP from iTunes, Beatport, and Juno Download, alternatively you can see what is new over on lostandfound.mu.