Thursday, 02 May
**Mario Bertoncini performs John Cage renowned masterworks: Sonatas and Interludes (1946-48) for prepared piano** "In this composition, Cage expresses his interpretation of the permanent emotions of Indian tradition: the Heroic, the Erotic, the Wondrous, the Comic (the four light moods), Sorrow, Fear, Anger, the Odious (the four dark moods), and their common tendency toward (central) Tranquility. This was Cage's first composition using Hindu philosophy as a basis, and he composed the Sonatas and Interludes in a period of time during which he was reading extensively the wo… Read more
Thursday, 25 April
*Featuring 23 tracks, including 4 new exclusives and vinyl only tracks* In the space of three years and some 25 releases, Eglo Records has established one of the UK's finest future funk-and-soul-based catalogues. 'Vol.1' collects highlights from their tight-knit roster, starring the best bits by bossman, Floating Points alongside straight aces from Funkineven, Arp101, Fatima, GB: The Abstract Eye, Mizz Beats, and Shuanise. You could hardly ask for a better introduction than CD1s heavy-hitters such as Floating Points' still-anthemic 'Vacuum Boogie' or the rugged bounce of Funkineven's 'She's… Read more
Mark Nelson's cherished Pan American quietly slip back into our consciousness as a band proper, now adding the estimable talents of Steven Hess (Cleared/Haptic) and Nelson's former Labradford bandmate, Robert Donne to the project. While Nelson assuredly handles all production, the live feel is definitely more prominent, folding in the patter of Hess's percussion and Bobby Donne's languid bass at the centre of seven beautifully diffuse soundscapes bordering on the frontier lands of post-rock, dub techno and ambient electronica, yet never clearly falling within any one sector. Every el… Read more
Yu Aseda aka Ena invites us into the Tokyo underground with debut album, 'Bilateral' for France's 7even Recordings. As with his RA mix and prior 12"s for 7even, he presents a well rounded and individual sound taking inspiration from dubstep, techno and electronica to shape detailed, etheric rhythmscapes bristling with finely rendered textures and probing tonal dynamics. The ghosts of Berlin, London and Jamaican dub are omnipresent, manifesting in the King Tubby or Burial-esque concrète-carving of 'Inutility', whilst 'Unplug' has a midnight electro-jazz effervescence redolent of Jan Jelinek of DJ Krush. T… Read more
*'Four Piano Studies' is the first release on Ryan Teague's own 'King Tree' label* "Following the success of last years full length album Field Drawings, composer and multi-instrumentalist Ryan Teague offers up this contrasting EP of beautiful and poetic solo piano pieces. Combining Minimalist, Impressionist and Romantic influences, Four Piano Studies conveys a modern take on an age-old format whilst still conveying a sense of real originality. Short and concise, these compositions performed by Semra Kurutaç (Piano Circus) strike an immediately haunting tone in the listener and provide another insight into the range and breadth of Ryan's output."
Cosmin TRG further refines his house and techno tastes on 'Gordian' two years on from his debut album, 'Simulat'. Packaged in the sort of grown-up tip-on gatefold slipcase you'd more expect from Stephen O'Malley's Ideologic Organ imprint, both the titular, conceptual inference to ancient myth and the sleekly developed brand of techno within imply a carefully considered development of the Berlin-based Romanian producer's ideas. Proceeding to jettison any tangible connection with rave and dubstep in favour of a buttoned-up, earnestly focussed conservatism, Cosmin Nicolae offers, "The title references … Read more
The third volume of electronics-savvy saxophonist Colin Stetson's New History Warfare album series, and if you ask us, the most pungent and poignant of the lot - thanks in no small part to the dab hand of Ben Frost, who recorded its 11 tracks in single takes and has done a splendid job of capturing the molten intensity of a Stetson live performance. Pre-release chatter has focussed on the presence of Justin Vernon, who handles lead vocals on four of the tracks: particularly noteworthy are the pulsating, cyclical opener ‘And In Truth’, which sounds like Philip G… Read more
As this compilation on Brighton's Soundway label adeptly illustrates, Nigeria in the 1970s was a melting pot of different cultural influences, both from African sources and the wider influence of music from other corners of the world - most notably jazz and blues. This double-disc sized compilation draws together 26 tracks that have never before been reissued, offering a unique slant on how we think about Africa's contribution to what has previously been termed world music. As we'd hear on tropicalia recordings from Brazil in the '60s … Read more
**Gatefold card slipcase** Crafty, melodic IDM taking in layered ambient composition ('Forum'), alongside complex techno abstraction ('Serialiser'), intricate drumfunk epics ('At sixes' and '…And Sevens'), and pirouetting electro ('Kirly's Dreamband').
There are flashes of excellence on this record, the work of a former model Carmen Hilestad, which is styled very much after post-grunge alt.rock, from Beat Happening through to Murray Street-era Sonic Youth, but approaches it with a contemporary Scandi-pop sensibility, a bit of early MTV / AM radio swagger and crisp production befitting its home on Smalltown Supersound. If there's a criticism to be made, it's that it never quite settles down in to one thing or the other - Hilestad doesn't seem to know if she wants to be Kim Gordon or Chrissie Hynde, Carrie Brownstein or Lykke Li. This indecision… Read more
CLR collate the most recent five volumes from Adam-X's killer Traversable Wormhole project together with a 73-minute composite mix. Adored by everyone from Chris Liebing to Dominick Fernow, this collection is the place to go for proper darkside techno thrills, especially if you like your rhythms churned off-the-bone and synched with that shark-eyed New York swagger. Pushed to pick highlights, we'd direct you to the shuddering roil of 'Paradoxical Consequences', the tunnelling, minimalist funk of 'Negative Energy Density' or the droning 4/4 beast, 'Worldline', but it's probably best experienced as a whole package, mix included.
**CD and super thick booklet of liner notes, photos and lyrics** Analog Africa roll us back to Benin between 1969-1980 for a killer third volume of Orchestra Poly-Rythmo de Cotonou heat. 'The Skeletal Essence Of Afro-Funk' once again exposes the genetic roots of Vodou groove, a well trodden mash of rhythms - Jerk Fon, Afrobeat, Pop Fon, Jerk Sakpata, Cavacha Fon, Pachanga and Afrobeat - anchored by the deadly combo of drummer Leopold Yehouessi and bassist Gustave Bentho and funked up with dual vocals and the slinkiest electric guitar accent… Read more
Thursday, 18 April
The most keenly awaited entry in Fabric's mix series for a while is finally here. It's over a year since Karl 'Regis' O'Connor, Dave 'Function' Sumner, John 'Silent Servant' Mendez and Peter 'Female' Sutton called time on their Sandwell District collective and label, but Function and Regis continue to use the name for their DJ/live incarnation - and it's the sound of that battle-hardened tag-team which is captured on Fabric69, a 30-track rinse-out of high-torque techno broadcast from their bunker in Berlin. The first half of the disc feels like it belongs to Regis: his def… Read more
**Includes a bonus disc selection of ClekClekBoom singles from the archive** French Fries' Clek Clek Boom label shows how they do in Paris with tracks of his own bundled with bass-wise Chi-house hybrid exclusives from Jean Nippon, The Town, Manare, Ministre X, and Coni. CD1: The bossman tosses his stepping, holo'd-out 'Southside' and c*nty consideration, ''Yo Vogue VIP' to the 'floor beside The Town's deft, dust-scuffed 808 dip and roll on 'Dice'; Jean Nipon goes grimy with the brass stabs and slicing syncopation of 'Coming At You', Coni locks down to a… Read more
*Includes Two Bonus Tracks* One of our favourite albums from the Kompakt archive is now finally given the reissue treatment via Koze's own Pampa imprint. Here's what we said when it first came out: "Koze has done something rare with this album - carefully assembling a tracklisting that's perfectly tweaked for primetime warehouse abuse alongside music that's hand carved into the most delicate homespun niche you could possibly imagine. The immediate destroyer here is the almost unacceptably good "Don't Feed The Cat" - a classic jack-track full of the most spannered synth mutilations you… Read more
**Glossy digicase with label catalogue and fold-out liner-notes** Editions RZ collects historical recordings of Italy's forward looking and influential Gruppo di Improvvisazione Nuova Consonanza 1967-75, a collective featuring Egisto Macchi (percussion + celesta), Ennio Morricone (trumpet), Walter Branchi (bass), Franco Evangelisti (piano), John Heineman (trombone + cello), Roland Kayn (hammond organ + vibes + marimbaphon), Giovanni Piazza (horn), Frederic Rzewski (piano), and Jesus Villa Rojo (clarinet). All skilled players and composers, the Gruppo di Improvvisazi… Read more
**Double CD with label catalogue and 24-page liner notes housed in trifold slipcase** 'Kompositionen 1950-1972' collects 16 compositions by Christian Wolff. "Most of the pieces collected for this portrait of Christian Wolff document the composer’s early activity and were mainly recorded around the time of their composition. Each recording exemplifies the sound gestures from their time. "Finally I realized that the kind of sound made in an indeterminate situation includes what could result in no other way; for example, the sound of a player making up his mind, or having to change… Read more
**Glossy digicase with label catalogue and fold-out liner-notes** Editions RZ collect ten early works by the late Morton Feldman (1926 - 87). They're largely his shorter pieces, spanning compositions made between 1952 and 1959 alongside esteemed peers including David Tudor, Cornelius Cardew, John Tilbury, and János Négyesy. ""In his compositions for piano, which make up a central part of his oeuvre and in which all of his experience is accumulated, it is the play of Feldman's hand whose touch is intended precisely for the 'untouchableness' of sound. The clear character of the 'attack' th… Read more
**Double disc with label catalogue and 12-page liner notes housed in glossy trifold slipcase** Expertly compiled selection of Tudor's essential performances of works by John Cage, Morton Feldman, Christian Wolff, Sylvano Bussoti spanning 1955-1963. "Includes "Music For Piano 21-36", "Variations 1", "Variations II", "Winter Music", "Piece For Four Pianos" (including performance by Feldman), etc. Essential document. "David Tudor, pianist -- a profession, a vocation, a life. From 1950 until around 1965, David Tudor was the epitome of the pianist who could simply play anything. In fact, David T… Read more
'Rites' is the chilling solo debut proper by Sri Lanka-born, Bristol-based composer and sound designer, Paul Jebanasam. It arrives via his own Subtext label - home to a series of bracing recent releases by Emptyset and Roly Porter - to deliver a payload of gothic electro-acoustic composition blending neo-classical, black metal and electronic drone traits with an insoluble, elemental alchemy. It should come as little surprise that he's also been known to handle sound design for film, but 'Rites' is concerned with far loftier, artful ideas as the label's press expounds; "Rites brings together a unif… Read more
Sham Palace, the label owned and operated by Sublime Frequencies associate Mark Gergis, presents an amazing selection of intense and driving Dabke - the regional folk dance style popularised to some extent in the west by Omar Souleyman. Not limited to Souleyman's native Syria, this selection spans the Houran region "...a swathe of south Syria and north western Jordan, beginning just below Damascus, and encompassing the Syrian cities of Daraa, Suweida, Bosra, and the Golan Heights. Its populations include Syrians, Bedouin, Druze, Palestinians and Jordanians." It takes in seven … Read more
'Vier Stücke' or 'Four Pieces' by the renowned sound art pioneer, composed between 1988 and 1999, collected and released in 2000. 'Vocrolls II' (1988) is the longer version of a recording of toy marble coming to rest in a Tibetan metal bowl, and later processed through an early phase vocoder algorithm in "physics-defying fashion" on a computer at Berlin's Technical University. It marks Kubisch's first work with computer processing and is eerily redolent of the interference we'd hear now on skype calls or youtube compressions. 'Mouseware' (1998) is the soundtrack to an installa… Read more
Thursday, 11 April
ahhhh, this is so good. Michigan noise celebs John Olson and Nate Young are joined by new blood James Baljo to coin their new era of mutoid wave music on 'No Answer: Lower Floors'. You freaks will also be pleased to hear that former members Aaron Dilloway and Mike Connelly return to the fold for this slab of cold, zombied meat, converging primal visions of regressed futures previously imagined in records by the likes of TG or The German Shepherds. There's a sense that the group's divergent individual interests - Nate Young with Regression, Stare Case, Moon Pool & Dead Band, John Olson … Read more
Bobby Krlic returns with his hugely anticipated second album as The Haxan Cloak, and his first for Tri Angle. It's an unrelentingly bleak offering that will satisfy fans of his terrific Aurora Borealis debut, but it also has a more electronic, rhythmic feel befitting of his new label and which will potentially appeal to an even wider audience. Though it was supposedly conceived to soundtrack a soul's journey beyond this mortal coil, don't come at it expecting some blissed-out amble through Elysium; Krlic's vision of the afterlife is a decidedly gloomy and abyssal, an all-out descent into the… Read more
**Housed in die-cut slipcase** Erased Tapes illuminate the sorely overlooked work of Continuous Piano Music pioneer, Lubomyr Melnyk, on five pieces in collaboration with the label's stars, Peter Broderick and Nils Frahm. As reputedly the fastest piano player in the world, Melnyk conceived and developed a signature style of rapid notes and note-series, sustaining speeds of over 19.5 notes per second in each hand, and also holds the record for most number of notes played in one hour with 93,650 individual notes. Of course, that's impressive, but not as impressive as his music, here … Read more
LA's Danny and Tiffany Preston aka Rainbow Arabia reach out with a canny 2nd album of colourful synth-pop following their well received debut LP for Kompakt. At once perky and melancholic, 'F.M. Sushi' has a more defined '80s synth sensibility than its predecessor, replacing the ethno-touristic elements with songs full of clean, crisp and bubbly synths and drum machines referencing classic Italo, UK synth pop and minimal wave.
**Includes a bonus disc of singles** Glasgow's most infamous neo no-wave unit unleash their razing debut album on Night School. Favourites of Optimo's Keith and Jonnie - who released their debut 10" - and a staple of the UK noise/rock circuit, Divorce wield a blistering, heavyweight sound defined by larynx-wrenching vocals, martial percussion and megalithic guitar brutality. There are nine crushing slabs of tight-as-f**k noise rock on 'Divorce' and they're all recommended to those who aren't easily satisfied.
"Following 2011’s ‘Kiss Each Other Clean’, ‘Ghost On Ghost’ is the fifth studio album from Austin-based Sam Beam. Beam felt it time to move from what he called the “anxious tension” from this record and his previous one (‘The Shepherd’s Dog’). “This record felt like a reward to myself after the way I went about making the last few,” he says. Recorded in New York and produced by Beam’s longtime associate Brian Deck (Modest Mouse, Califone, Fruit Bats), helping achieve Beam’s vision were a group of stellar musicians including Rob Burger of Tin Hat Trio, Steve Bernstein, Tony Scherr, Kenny Wo… Read more
Finders Keepers' 3rd volume of Ilaiyaraaja tunes offers a bounty of south subcontinental '80s electro-disco-pop. While their previous collections have homed in on his work with the "Tamil Nightingale", K.S. Chitra, and "The Electronic Pop Sound Of Kollywood 1977-1983", this one follows in the same groove as Bombay Connection's excellent 'Fire Star: Synth Pop & Electro-Funk From Tamil Films 1984-1989' or Cartilage Records' amazing 'Play That Bat Mr. Raja' compilations with 17 songs selected for their dancefloor potential. Drawn from a collection of over 4500 (and counting) songs mostly written for o… Read more
Nu-boogie's flyest practitioners display the breadth of their versatility on this well put-together debut album. Childhood pals Andy Harber and Richard Roberts established an enviable rep with a pair of 12"s for Alex Nut's Ho Tep label circa 2010/11 that effortlessly slid between house, '80s boogie and hip hop with incisive, modern production swerve blending Dilla-esque MPC knocks with digitally-misted, Actress-style flex, and the romantic boogie psychedelia of, say, Maxmillion Dunbar, or the filter disco curves of Thomas Bangaltar. Their eponymous long player finds them deadly cool, deft a… Read more