Tracks

Protect-U: "Motorbike"

(2012)

By George Bass | 24 May 2012

It’s amazing what can happen through horseplay in the studio. Label boss Mike Petillo and his sidekick Aaron Leitko were just dicking around, battling each other with obscure analogue synths. Next thing they’re an act, Planet Mu have signed them, and are prepping techno sketch “Motorbike” for release. Featuring the chunkiest slabs this year, it’s a complete pastiche of the ’80s in five notes. If the bass line doesn’t grab you, turn back now because not much else happens for the duration.

Not much else has to. “Motorbike” is a prowler; precisely want you want playing if you draw up to the lights on Street Hawk. Lesser tracks have carried whole B-movies, and Leitko and Petillo layer the atmosphere with artificial strings, proving they can do more than just superficial funk. Street Hawk malfunctions but the two men keep him going, the keyboards drooping but refusing to shut, like a drinker’s eyes. After six minutes they do, but only once they’ve shown you you don’t need a bag of tricks to keep people enthralled—you just need one trick, done perfectly.