I don't know if the Discombobulated Step on Hanz's Plasty I is a sign of a return to the deep, dark, cyberpunk cool of days to come, or a continuance of the current self-regarding, high-tech fear of the Black Mirror cult, but I kind of hope it's the former. The short album fires off jagged knives of hiss and roughly sampled atmospherics that don't coalesce into anything as comfortable as a narrative arc.

The aural equivalent of Coffin Joe, Hanz ploughs his furrow through the oiliest of scrapyard landscapes. It just invites flowery symbolism.

Some context for Hanz's dyspeptic world view can be discerned in the work of fellow Tri Angle alumni Haxan Cloak, and Ninja Tunes' darker contributors. Some moments call back to Goldie, some to the gothic chain-banging of Fat of the Land. 'Your Local Shapeshifter' works through these influences while sticking to a small number of beat patterns and overlays. The producer prefers to work in simple, recognisable themes, reconstituted with jittery filters and deep, whistling soundscapes. The album is most enjoyable when tracks are thrashing around all over the place, never quite comfortable in their own skin.

'Page' takes a single, snake bite of a snare and surrounds it in clattering percussion and snatched suggestions of speech. There are very few solid bass kick patterns that do not dip out of the mix, only to return filthy with new and clashing accompaniment. Things whirr and slip in and out of clarity.

The real buried gem here is 'Root Words'. I struggled to find a precursor to it; Rough Trade's Counter Culture sampler from back in 2002 had a track on it called Mice In Drain by Dymaxion, which had a similarly nutball world view. The track throws together a steady, pounding tom beat with those gloomy ambients, but then proceeds to break into a creaking, glitchcore beat with no discernible logic or reason for existing other than in the demented reality conjured up by the track. It's with these tiny moments of madness that Plasty I grabs at the listener's throat and drags you into its orbit.

For such a brief work, Plasty I packs a real punch. At it's strongest when it is throwing shade on its own more settled rhythms, it's a scary ride.