[IFM036] Spin & Pick

by J.Alvarez

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You may know the man behind J.Alvarez—Seattle producer Chris Roman—from his prodigious, excellent electro recordings as 214. (If not, start making up for lost time, straggler.) Shifting gears under this new alias, Roman has proved himself to be equally adept in the steamy realm where techno and house intermingle and get it on—right on the freakin’ dance floor. Spin and Pick—his debut release for Innerflight—offers four tracks that function as both high-quality DJ tools and sumptuous headphone listening.
“Spin And Pick” kicks off the EP with a stark, funkiness that’s at once earthy and spacey. You can hear traces of Roman’s electro background in the stuttering cymbal taps, but the rhythm here hews closer to techno’s linear propulsion. The stoic bass line gives a heavy gravitational pull in contrast to the shimmering, Bernie Worrell-like synth squiggles and whorls whisking you toward the stars. Alvarez uses vocals (mostly mutters and whispers) as textural coloration and chilling undercurrent rather than as conveyors of specific words. “Watch Your Step” is galloping, momentous techno with huge, clap-enhanced beats and a suspenseful main melody redolent of Goblin’s most memorable horror-film soundtracks. The hard-driving rhythm, boosted with a prowling, growling bass line that could make a statue dance, makes this ideal peak-time business.
The urgent, shuttling techno of “Noon” launches you out of mundane reality, aided again by Alvarez’s phenomenal skill for creating bulbous, motivational bass lines. The record closes with “Come Back,” whose massive, sweeping clap-augmented beats bump against a rotund yet buoyant synth bass figure as a beautifully melancholy melody drones in the distance. Having established himself as one of America’s foremost exporters of electro, Roman’s alter ego J.Alvarez shows that he’s on the fast track to ascending to the techno stratosphere, too. 

Support from:

Tomas Jirku - Thoughtless Music
"Tight, great song-writing in a realm where most producers don't know the meaning of the term. 'Spin and Pick' particularly nails it, and I love where 'Noon' takes us."

Bryan Zentz - M_nus
"Yes! Really great vibe and beautiful production from Chris here. My faves are Noon and Watch Your Step. Thanks!"

Noah Pred - Thoughtless Music
"Heat! Especially digging the first two."

Bryan Zentz - M_nus
"Yes! Really great vibe and beautiful production from Chris here. My faves are Noon and Watch Your Step. Thanks!"

Rennie Foster - RF / Thoughtless Music
"I like the title track, good break hip-hop-ish vibe and interesting bleep baseline."

Justin Sloe - Droog
"J.Alvarez has a unique style that is fresh as it is refreshing"

Revy - Bleepsequence
"Diggin these a lot, thanks! Hard to pick a favorite but Noon is freakin smooth…"

Alex Ruder - KEXP 90.3fm
"Yes! New J.Alvarez! Always a treat and so solid."

Cyanwave - From 0-1
"Great Release, Watch Your Step will be getting some play here :)"

John Massey - Subspec
"Another great release! Innerflight and Mr. Alvarez make a great fit…Cheers!"


released April 29, 2014

Written and produced by: Chris Roman
Mastering: www.audibleoddities.com
Cover layout / design: Mitchie Vega (pranagraphic.com)
Copyright: Innerflight Music



all rights reserved


Innerflight Music Seattle, Washington

Seattle’s Innerflight Music has a reputation as a forward thinking music label and production crew responsible for countless events in and around the Seattle area. With a diverse label roster of talented artists, 2013 has seen the label rapidly gaining attention with a steady stream of unique releases touching on various flavors of techno, house and a touch of future bass music for good measure. ... more

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