What happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object? Don’t know? How about when a drum’n’bass deity collides head on with a trance god? The result is the title track of High Contrast’s new EP, The First Note is Silent. The EP features the production talents of High Contrast and Tiësto, with additional production coming by way of the extremely talented electro act Underworld. The EP is a preview of what’s to come on High Contrast’s next album, which is slated for a February 2012 release according to Hospital Records. The convergence of these producers was not by happenstance; the song had its beginnings rooted in 2009, when High Contrast remixed Tiësto’s Kaleidoscope and subsequently went on to co-produce Underworld’s track Scribble in 2010.
The unlikely trio has successfully managed to impart their own unique sound on The First Note is Silent, while somehow managing to keep their contributions working in complete harmony. The final product is a highly uplifting, visceral piece of music that you can feel as much as you can hear. Underworld’s Karl Hyde manages to perfectly capture the mood of the song with his inspirational vocals and elevating melodies. The song flows seamlessly due to the filter-choked bassline and an arpeggiated lead synth that is the sonic equivalent of water droplets crashing on a hollow surface. As the song proceeds, awkwardly chopped segments of Hyde’s vocal precipitously materialize, commanding the listener’s interest.
The EP also features a trance mix of the tune by Tiësto himself and a B-side called Fearful Symmetry. Tiësto’s trance mix captures the same spirit of the original d’n’b version while adding a more progressive overtone. Fearful Symmetry will spin on many DJs’ turntables over the next few weeks–a real stormer from Lincoln Barrett’s alter ego. It’s worth noting that the official video for The First Note is Silent was written, recorded, and edited by High Contrast (see below). When asked about the video’s concept, HC stated: “I wanted to make something that took ideas from Eisenstein’s theory of intellectual montage, where one shot plus another shot equals something greater than both, but not do it in as literal or proselytizing a way as he did.”