Last year, NYC-based Mexican artist Debit released Animus, her debut full-length on NAAFI. It was an otherworldly exploration on gender and sexuality through ambiance and rhythm which turned out to be one of the best electronic albums of 2018. After dropping the five-track Love Discipline EP via Quiet Time shortly after, she paired up once again with the Mexican collective and label to bring us SYSTEM, her newest EP.
As with her previous output, on SYSTEM, Debit dives deep into concepts to provide her work with some context. This time, influenced by the Mayan language and Tzotzil literature, she invites us to challenge those aspects of society which aren’t normally questioned. This notion is represented here on the song titles, but most notably by her extensive deconstruction of a genre we can’t wait to come back in style: tribal guarachero. Its triplet-based patterns and pre-Hispanic samples can be heard throughout most of the EP, but in original, unexpected ways. She strips tribal to its rhythmic bones, and its typical drums are distorted, flanged out, filtered, or downsampled – generating frequencies that fill the sound spectrum, as she makes harmonics and undertones dance like a skilled sound choreographer.
SYSTEMS shows Debit’s music in its rawest, spikiest form to date – amping up the textural contrast found on Animus to perform aural acupuncture on our eardrums. Tribal’s irresistible rhythm is enhanced with mechanic techno coldness, and blown-out industrial sounds, making this a daring take on dance music.
Opening track “The Alphabet” finds her collaborating with fellow Monterrey producer and tribal guarachero heavy-hitter Javier Estrada, and together they summon acid rain through a circular beat. “My House” and its hollow sounds messes with our perception, while “Medicine” both pounds and scrapes our brain, demanding all of our attention and energy. The EP closes out with another collaboration, “Numbering,” this time with Teklife’s DJ Earl. The low-end-heavy number is all about tones an oscillations, hijacking our bodies to the beat of organic drum sounds.
In her ever-evolving musical universe, Debit will never give us the same thing twice, and that’s how we got SYSTEMS. Here, the past and the future converge, cracking a window to a parallel universe where a pre-Hispanic dystopia is taking place.
Listen to SYSTEM here:
Debit will have a release party for SYSTEM at Elsewhere (Zone One) on Friday, June 21. Get tickets here.