Title: Backwards Words
Artist: xQz
Release Date: 2014 Aug 10
Genre: Trip-Hop / Downtempo
License: CC BY-NC-SA
Label: Cult Classic Records


xQz is a 21-year-old producer from the Ukraine who is always looking for new approaches, new angles and backwards words.  It’s in the wide range of samples, chilled beats, and his perspective where xQz sets himself apart from many other producers in the downtempo game.

xQz’s Backwards Words

xQz is a minimalist when it comes to setting up a rig to work with (from the release notes): “Just me, my laptop, 16 pads and a pair of headphones, that’s it.” and when it comes to his selection of samples: “When it comes to sampling there are almost no boundaries…” except for sampling other producers samples.

It’s no surprise that with this attitude towards sampling, he starts with something as relatively un-heard as the opening of a V-Disc from World War II, and treats this work as a continuous stream of chilled beats all the way to the end, which closes with another V-Disc sample.

In between the opening and closing tracks, there’s a wide range of chilled groove and excellent techniques on display.  One track might take a sample, chop it up and re-sequence it then build on it, while another might take a sample played backwards, while a third might start with the beat, and weave samples around the beat.

There is no single technique or style on display here.  xQz’s approaches are almost individual to each track.  Yet, every track reaches the same chilled vibe that the others have presented.  The mood is consistent throughout the whole release.


xQz has been studying music for four years.  Yes, he’s only been studying music for four years.  On this, his first release on Cult Classic Records (but not his first release – he has another, self release work on BandCamp) he has proven that he is a formidable force in the downtempo world.  While his style carries many of the hallmarks of other producers, it is clear that his flexibility in adjusting his techniques to match the materials he is working with are outstanding.  More to the point, his multi-faceted production techniques allow him to choose how he wants a piece to come out, and make a recording that has a consistency from beginning to end.

xQz: Backwards Words

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Posted by George De Bruin


  1. thanks for this review man. it really warms me up to keep up.
    stay true to yourself.

    1. Thank you for checking out the review. I’m glad you appreciate it…definitely stay true to what you want to see in the world.


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