Thursday, 24 April
Fourteen years after his abstract pop landmark, 'Endless Summer', Christian Fennesz presents its conceptual companion, 'Bécs' on Editions Mego. He's released a good few albums and collaborative projects in the interim, perhaps most notably the expansive, drone-based 'Black Sea' (2008), and the Fenn O'Berg albums with Jim O'Rourke and Peter Rehberg, but none quite as accessible and ambitious as this one. Taking its title from the Hungarian word for his home city, Vienna, 'Bécs' (pronounced 'baeetch') also features additional modular synth from Cédric Stevens (Acid Kirk) and Polweschel's rhythm section, Wer… Read more
After 2012's corrosive Unknown Vectors EP on Visionist's Lost Codes label and a subsequent agonising silence, SD Laika's debut album for Tri Angle 'That's Harakiri' makes absolutely sure that no one in this new grime renaissance has a stranger, scarier, more enterprising voice than he does. Peter Runge is based in Milwaukee, but sounds like a jeep-sized inter-dimensional arachnid being based in a mess of webs underneath Wiley's house. This especially deranged collection of tracks branches outwards in two directions, exploring more experimentally noisy forms and textures as well as a wider area… Read more
Konstantinos Soublis aka Fluxion follows Type's reissue of his classic 'Vibrant Forms' with this set of buoyant dub house riddims recorded in New York for Echocord and starring reggae vocalist, Teddy Selassie. Taking clear inspiration from the seminal precedents of Main Street and Rhythm & Sound, Fluxion gives the Tikiman-alike Teddy Selassie a plush suite of stepping, skanking riddims rent with widescreen dub techno atmospheres, oscillating back and forth between lean, fluidly 4/4 instrumental steppers and dread-heavy future roots styles topped by the achingly mellifluous vocals.… Read more
The inimitable Estonian ex-pat takes inspiration from current hood, Brooklyn, in the darker, beguiling pop contours of her 3rd album proper. The challenging yet gratifying arrangements of 'Histrionic' are testament to both her consistency as a boundary-pushing artist, and an enduring belief in the role of pop music as a model for incisive cultural commentary and observation. Her sound here is more layered, spacious than previously heard, yet denser than ever, crammed with uncanny lyrical observations and interweaving, chimeric traces of psychedelic Trap and UK Bass music oiled with the sensua… Read more
"Muyei Power or Orchestre Muyei (muyei means ‘our country’) was one of the top dance bands of the 1970s in Sierra Leone. Soundway Records' first collection of music from this West African country (‘Muyei Power: Sierra Leone in 1970s USA’) is an album of rock-infused, 'afro' music from a group that traveled the world throughout the mid 1970s. Fusing elements of electric Congolese and Nigerian music with fast, syncopated, uptempo modernised arrangements of traditional music, Muyei Power produced a series of unique single-only releases that have been unavailable for 35 years. The rar… Read more
Hour long live performance by Detroit's dub techno maverick Steven Hitchell aka CV313. It was recorded live at Primary club night, Chicago on 24th August, breaking down to ten tracks, each built from numerous loops and elements of previous releases gelled with live instrumentation and processing inna DE:9 style. Recorded direct from the house mixer so there's some compression/limiting which couldn't be reversed.
"Imagine a 21st-century amalgam of Talking Heads' Remain in Light and D'Angelo's Voodoo, with a little of OutKast's Aquemini thrown in for good measure, all filtered through TEEN's distinctive musical vision. And listen closely: the tracks are filigreed with all kinds of fascinating events buried deep in the mix. Any great band evolves. And even though TEEN have released some excellent and acclaimed music in their first few years of existence, they knew they were still discovering their voice — in more than one sense of the word. TEEN just might have found it on their brilliant second album, Th… Read more
After more than twenty years, and following two recent EPs and an extensive touring plot, the hugely influential and iconic Pixies mark their return with ‘Indie Cindy’, their first full-length album since 1991’s ‘Trompe le Monde’.
**Double CD including all tracks from the vinyl editions + two previously unreleased recordings. Packaged in rigid double CD box with booklet** Morphine Records collate Charles Cohen's spellbinding recordings made a rare Buchla Music Easel modular synth circa 1976 - 1989 in this nigh-on essential retrospective. Equal parts electronic exploration, free-jazz and cosmic noise, Cohen's private body of work amassed over nearly two decades amounts to a deeply personal, vivid sketchbook of abstract ideas rendered in tangibly crisp yet elusively diffuse analogue vectors. For many, many years, fol… Read more
Thursday, 17 April
*Incredible album of oblique Batucada/Techno Hybrids - new on Hospital Productions* Nicolò Fortuni and Nico Vascellari's flamboyant Ninos Du Brasil battery make their Hospital Productions debut with an infectious blend of bespoke Batucada rhythms, techno and punk in 'Novos Mistérios'. It's a perfectly inappropriate release for Dominick Fernow aka Prurient's label, bound to baffle the purists and incite the dance in equal measures. Pairing carnivalesque percussive rituals with the slinky contours of stripped techno and a deeply engrained punk sensibility, Nico and Nicolò cast a unique al… Read more
Steve Hitchell and Rod Modell present the first part of three double CD disc sets distilling their nebulous and cultishly adored catalogue in the wake of 2012's 4LP best-of, 'Altering Illusions'. In classic Echospace tradition,they pair original, hard-to-find material with exclusive versions. This first volume of three is dedicated entirely to Steve Hitchell's cv313 alias, offering thirteen misty variants on a closely defined dub house theme of fluid chord flux, heaving dub bass and expansive dub noise. Equally recommended to the hardcore followers and noobs looking to dip a toe in their tranquil waters.
**Edition of 200** Texturally rich and deeply engaging sound art occupying space between GAS, Philip Jeck, and Bellows. Recommended! "Giuseppe Pinot-Gallizio was a founding member of the Situationist International and inventor of Industrial Painting. These artworks were created by machines, which automatically made abstract expressionist paintings on long rolls of canvas, to be cut up and sold by the metre. Graham Dunning’s ongoing Music by the Metre project is a homage to Pinot-Gallizio. Dunning creates abstract music machines from found tape loops, dusty 78s, live enviro… Read more
On this second album, husband-and-wife duo Mike Paradinas (μ-Ziq) and Lara Rix-Martin have honed their craft further and teamed up with French singer Vezelay for some supremely chill rides. The delicate synths and vocal harmonies, both positioned just so, can trace their origins to Paradinas's earlier milieu of 90s electronica, and even further back to 70s and 80s cosmicism, but they also resonate appealingly with contemporary moods in downtempo, such as those of Tory Y Moi or How To Dress Well. A work of calm and carefully engineered beauty.
"Christian Löffler is co-founder of Ki Records and well known for his intense, deep moving sound with melancholic undertones. After several releases for Ki and Orphanear, the imprint of Dial’s co-founder Pawel, his debut ‘A Forest’ is now being released through Ki."
**Crazy, hard-rocking proto-punk aces from Detroit circa 1975-1980** "Five years after the second life of Death was started with the release of their revelatory 1976 album, ‘For The Whole World To See’, Death’s ‘III’ slams the door on the vault with a powerful set of songs that bring equal amounts of rock and ethereal soul-searching, in high-fidelity, rich bottomed, studio-grade sound. • ‘III’ starts with David inside a deep 1975 guitar improvisation, rising up through atmospheres and prehistoric guitar murk to coalesce in jagged monster-riff-dom. The whole exercise recalls Funkadelic’s great Eddie Hazel whi… Read more
**Includes bonus CD with remixes from Machinedrum, Will Saul, Breach, Ben Pearce, Mount Kimbie & Actress** Kelis returns with a Dave Sitek (TV On The Radio) produced glossy sixth album dripping with funk, soul, gospel and Afrobeat influences - he first album for Ninja Tune. 'Food' is the equivalent of comfort eating, heavily informed by a nostalgic impression of the music Kelis grew up with - her father was a Jazz musician - and therefore flush with "proper" instruments accompanied by some electronic embellishments just to let you know it was actually released in 2014. It revolves around an eponymous theme … Read more
*Now available again after far too long on CD through Drag City* "Over the years Smog records ranged around from several completely selfplayed and recorded efforts, dictated by voices from within, to more collaborative projects involving the people outside Bill Callahan’s head. However, never before was there a Smog album made like this. Produced and co-arranged by Jim O’Rourke, ‘Red Apple Falls’ combs back the passions of ‘Wild Love’ and ‘The Doctor Came At Dawn’ to make an even part, revealing a purer pop sound; all of it pressed into pure 24k gold. Why is it that Smog looks to find beauty in su… Read more
MJC marks the next big step in her flourishing catalogue with a signature mix of deep and techy house for Fabric 75. Since the late naughties, the London-based British-Japanese producer has been at least partly responsible for a sub-mainstream swing towards fresh, raw house music with a classic integrity. This mix showcases where she's at right now, blending mature house grooves with party-time peakers in seamless style. Over 17 tracks she wends a way from Trus'me's 'Somebody' to Fran Von Vie's trancy synth-pop piece 'Lonely Nights' via her own edits of KSKY's 'Madness' and he… Read more
Absolutely off-the-chain explorations of Arabic tropes and wayward improvisation from a core member of the Montreal scene, recorded in Cairo, Egypt and starring Sun City Girls' Alan Bishop on two tracks. From effected vocal cut-ups to psychedelic electronics via humid ambient collage and extended oud meditation, it sounds like very little else we can think of. "Music For Arabs is like Music For Airports for taxi drivers: mood music of a mood of a time as a space and vice versa to maybe while the time away in a Cairo traffic jam when all else fails. Its ambient hope is meant to conjure up so… Read more
Reissue of Larry Heard's 1996 album. Openly inspired by Ridley Scott's visionary sci-fi classic of the same name, 'Alien' is a plush artefact of Chicagoan Afro-futurism ranking among the jazziest, deepest in his catalogue.
**CD mounted on spotgloss-printed and embossed card sleeve** 'Reset' (2008) is a fine showcase of solo work by Kotra, owner of Ukraine's Kvitnu label. It inhabits a space between the clinical glitch output of Raster-Noton and a rawer, wayward experimental sound relishing in strange, dissonant tones and clashing organic textured samples with sharp electronics over 16 pieces ranging from CoH-like decimation to blown out experiments in distortion and clipped glitch acrobatics.
Thursday, 10 April
Superlative recording of Gavin Bryars performing his elegy for the Titanic accompanied by an ensemble including his four children on low strings and Philip Jeck playing improvised turntable, among others. Nearly 40 years old now, Bryar's signature and best known composition continues to undergo change and refinement in its partly pataphysical reflection of the tragedy, speculating further on the notion of Bandmaster Hartley's group performing 'Autumn' on the vertical deck of a slowly nose-diving ocean liner, and also below sea level, accompanied by the… Read more
Loops Haunt returns with an excellent album of heady, layered, woozy percussive jamz for Black Acre on his new album 'Exits'. "Toying with Jungle and Hip Hop on Zenith and outright sound design on Ark, the wilderness-bound beat alchemist uses his isolation to explore and create his otherworldly sound palate. Lurking behind immaculate drums are the windswept sounds of the desolate North and mechanized textures plucked from his Father’s workshop. Exits is designed to be listened to as one continuous track, opening with ambient mood and emotion, layering outboard synths and found-sounds on the title tra… Read more
The first album ever outside of Spain to focus on the history of Gipsy Rhumba, one of the most interesting musical culture clashes, first taking place in the early 1960s. In the Catalan region of Spain gipsies, primarily known as the creators of Flamenco, came up with a fascinating hybrid style - Gipsy Rhumba - which blended together Latin and Rhumba music of Cuba and the Caribbean together with their own flamenco, as well as the emerging rock ‘n’roll from America. As well as a musical overview of this unique art form, the r… Read more
South American-born Parisian Valentino Mora returns with a tough and convulsive take on dance music with this long awaited 13 track album for ClekClekBoom. Named after the NASA vessel currently in orbit (which itself is named in honour of seminal Astronomer Johannes Kepler), the album builds on the sound made popular by 2012's "Yo Vogue" fusing elements of House, Ghettotech and Electro nicely over-compressed for maximum impact. Highlights include the Levon Vincent aping "Change The Past" and the Millsian 'K62' featuring compatriot and labelmate Bambounou.