Kieren Hebden & Steve Reid – ‘Strings Of Life’ Ltd. 12″ [Text]

A record so damn good that despite the hype we wanted to weigh in on quickly; finally released on wax comes occasional collaborators Kieren Hebden aka Four Tet and Steve Reid taking on seminal Detroit techno in stunning style. The two cover ‘Strings Of Life’, creating it’s most out-there, and in someways it’s most faithful, versioning in one hit. Recorded live sometime before the jazz drummer’s passing in 2010, it’s become a well-known artefact that showcases the experimental and adventurous vein of both artists.

Almost fitting that the vinyl release of this comes in the wake of news about the passing of Ornette Coleman. It’s proper free-jazz style, embracing multiple ideas and song styles playing out at once from totally different ends of the spectrum, coming together for something really special. Can’t help but think that Coleman would’ve been a fan.

Derrick May’s original working is identifiable throughout, moving underneath splashy drums and what feels like every electronic trick Hebden has going live. It’s three elements are distinctive as a result, all entering the mix from different angles but melding together nonetheless. Hands-down one of the best versions out there.

Unfortunately it feels like only about ten copies of this landed, but hopefully there’s more (even in a less collectable sleeve) on their way. No doubt you can purchase off Discogs at ridiculous pricing soon…but as always we’d encourage you not to.

Released on Hebden’s own Text imprint, the record comes in limited numbers, in ” a handmade Letterpress sleeve designed and printed By Marta Dos Santosall” with all proceeds from this record go to The Steve Reid Foundation. For those that missed a copy fortunately there’s a few streams, one of which embedded below.