Monday, 25 August
Masterful modular techno poundings from the Brummie techno boss - his first proper Token release following a remix of Grovskopa's 'Sex and Violins' in 2008. Both cuts are recognisably Surgeon productions, but perhaps not instantly so due to his new palette of modular synths. The original 'Fixed Action Pattern' galvanises signature shuffle and bruising kicks with a bristling, chaotic noise energy that's a thrilling new addition to his sound, whilst the aquatic Dub carves the groove to a solemn halfstep lurch steeped in sepulchral groans and consumed by oncoming waves of masticated electricity. It's a real burner.
Enchanting, refreshing house from Deepblak's Damon Bell for London's Meda Fury division of R&S. Positively spilling over with good vibes, 'Hue-Man Made' serves five tracks of Afro-centric rhythms sprinkled with lush keys and radiant synths to mark out ground between Jamal Moss at his most lucid, and the supple grooves of Mr Raoul K or Aybee. Check for the breezy strums and triplet gyrations of 'Hue-Man Made' or the beaming cosmic grooves of 'Radius' and 'Enthusiastic Minor'.
Nimble, dreamy remixes from LoVil (Ricardo Villalobos and Max Loderbauer) and the Booma Collective's Oren Ratowsky & Solpara. The LoVil version of 'Pendule' is surely one of the best (of many) remixes in recent memory from the venerable Berliners, squashing the groove to a seductively sticky pulp swarmed with old skool early '90s ambient pads inna 2014 hi-tech jazz style. Ratowsky & Solpara's remix is pedestrian by comparison, but useful for dreamier tech-house times.
Space-headed slo-mo techno/hip hop trips from R&S's new signing. Five tracks explore downtempo zones akin to Cloud Boat in 'On The Edge Surrounded With The Shores Of Assudrey', beside the sci-fi hip hop noise of 'Deer Drink From The River' and two pieces of scratchy modular noise in 'Dialectic A' & Dialectic B'. Fans of Fhloston Paradigm or Herva should check it oot.
Nimble, fruity tech-house standards from UK legend Colin McBean aka Mr. G. 'P Bar Jam' pays dues to Berlin's most notorious nightspot with a skipping 909 groove and sultry chords; 'Tripped Out' eases off on a skanking deep techno/house flex midway between Radioslave and Chain Reaction styles; 'End Of Day Jam' slydes out to poised organ chords and laidback, effervescent groove.
Slickly irresistible swing-jaxx from one of the biggest UK house production units. 'Mistakes' is a perfectly measured, in-the-pocket burner with sweet vocal, '90s Korg M1 riff and supple subs; 'Dimensions' is tuffer, reminds of Karizma productions; 'Bird Flu' is a freakier tribal driver with wicked balance of dark stabs and frothy 4th world vibes; 'Foorest' is a sonar-scanning reduction of trippy bleep techno and skanking minimal house.
Bobby Champs, West Norwood Cassette Library, Kevin McPhee and J. Tijn as remixed by J. Tijn, Knowing Looks, Kamikaze Space Programme, and WNCL. J. Tijn turns Champs' 'Krenshaw' into a bruising/bruised techno tool and Knowing Looks sparks WBCL's 'Drop' as a breakbeat 'ardcore ruction. Kamikaze Spacxe Programme runs roughshod over Mcphee's 'In Circles' for a rugged drum tool, and WNCL cools off on a remix of J. Tijn's 'Flat'.
A trio of burned-out house bangers from Detroit's Patricia plus a dead shifty remix from James T Cotton. As with Patricia's 'Body Issues' release for Opal Tapes and Inhalants 12" with Jahiliyya Fields for L.I.E.S., their debut on Ghostly International presents a heavily obfuscated house style, burying fizzing, toiling drum machines and melancholic pads behind ferric smokescreens. The style is most effective in the motor city moodiness of 'Hulderhusan' and 'Foie Gras', but the most effective dancefloor cut has to be JTC's itchin' I-94 Lick of 'Drip Dawn'.
Ital continues to twist the putative conventions of house and techno on his third album in two years. 'Endgame' feels light years away from his earliest transmissions of natty, lo-fi house, and much closer to brooding, minimal, modern house and techno styles, eking out a headier, weirder space somewhere between the styles of Tin Man, Kassem Mosse, and Joey Anderson, for comparison. The difference between then and now is perhaps his switch from software to select pieces of hardware, resulting in a more linear plot and liquified, worm-holing momentum on 'Endgame', no doubt enhanced by mixing and mast… Read more
Midland's Autonomous Africa gang regroup for a 3rd session, this time accompanied by General Ludd. Midland opens with the raspin' drums, chants and Carl Craig-style progressions of 'Safi' beside General Judd's scuffed 'n skippy Glasgow bassbin killer, 'Burning Mask'. B-side, Auntie Flo captains the soulful, hypnotic vocal and drum percolations of 'Daabi' somewhere between London and Tanzania, and we find JD Twitch at his loosest with the lilting riddmic cadence of 'Maya' making for a dizzy tribal trip. All of the label's profits from sale of this record go to the Mtandika Mission in Tanzania.
Anthony Naples mans up the 3rd 12" on his Proibito label after sessions from Huerco S (Royal Crown Of Sweden) and Local Artist. Side A jams hard with booty-slamming kicks and filtered synthlines coming off like Delroy Edwards reworking old skool Daft Punk before sailing out to a finale of lush new age chords. On Side B he comes craftier with nifty drum programming and shifty, strangely dubbed-out chords, again descending to a blown-out breakdown only to return groggier and washed out. Canny stuff, check it oot.
Following a cool Public Information album, Austin Cesear's debut for Anthony Naples' Proibito is by turns one of the label's lushest and most challenging releases to date. On one hand you've got a dreamy deep house groove rich with warm sub-bass and strewn with breezy soul-strung samples on the B-side '1 Year', while the flipside is all about deferred gratification and experimentalism, with the filtered, detached loops of 'Yep' and the brittle strangely compressed space and unyielding build of 'Slink'.
Grubby, swangin' house and techno trax from Hank Jackson for Anthony Naples' Proibito label. Hot on the heels of his outstanding Mister Saturday Night Records single, Hank knuckles down to a ruddier, shiftier sound here, from the seasick jack of 'Palee Hit' to the insistent tribal cadence of 'Track 3' and the tape head-melting distortion and groggy welt of 'Sizzler'.
From Kansas via Brooklyn, Huerco S returns with four ferric-drenched psy-house shufflers for Anthony Naples' Proibito label. His first new material since that ace debut album 'Colonial Patterns' and the 'Aphelia's Theme' 12" for Future Times is distinguished by a subtle expansion and concentration of his sound - basslines feel chewier, knotted, and the atmospheres wider, lusher. A-side loads up one piece of decelerated groove and melting kosmiche dub tones, plus a slinky filter shimmy that comes off like a Soundhack inversion. B-side goes heavier with the kicks inna gritted, grun… Read more
Anthony Naples' Proibito label introduces Toronto's Local Artist on a gritty, charmingly rudimentary techno/house session. The big tune is A-side banger, 'Mr. Kiwi's', a frisky combination of latinized shakers and pinging delays anchored by a proper, bootin' kick drum, while the rest of the EP hovers between disco-looped deep house on 'Zero Zero Four', and more skewed, dubbed out groove experiments on the flip with the Syncom Data-like dust shimmy of 'Sun Raw', and the Huerco S or Madteo-esque hypnotiser, 'Mansion Of Hours'.
Anthony Naples' Proibito label unfurls its first delivery; three tracks from Huerco S in his Royal Crown Of Sweden guise, backed with murky remix by Bookworms, Steve Summers, and Lori Antenes. From the sounds of it, the whole gang have been heavily dosing up on vintage Theo Parrish records and DJ sets. A-side, he comes close to STL for that sluggish sorta red-eyed Theo worship with the crooked, overlapping bass grooves and melting 4-bar loops of 'Vänern', but there comes a point just before half-way when the elements mystifyingly coalesce and you realise its own pr… Read more
Ric and Max do their bendy, extended remix thing with NoW's bona fide Warp classic, 'Aftermath'. The 24 year old bleep techno template is extruded thru their modular arsenal to resemble a strange older version of itself, the vocal pitched down to a pensioners ramble and all the energy of the breaks and bass diffused into snaking, whirring polyrhythms. Frankly, it's boring. However, their Electric Jazz Version is ace, dicing up sprung drums, darting bass motifs and feathered vocal flits to sound some menagerie of psychotropically-enhanced, flying chimeras performing an ancient ritual involving multi-dimensional time signature switches.
Blown-out lo-fi house and techno patter from Oakland, CA's Worker Parasite, new on Opal Tapes.
Dank darkside industro-dubs from Italy's Violetpoison - one half of the Violetshaped duo with Shapednoise. This has to be his most diverse yet coherent statement to date in this guise, from the captivating display of voltage control in 'Gabbia Di Faraday' thru some massively killer industrial disco romps in the searing arpeggiations of 'Lisergico' and the Autechrian convolutions of 'Run', to Silent Servant-like 115bpm sleaze in 'The Key' and 'Sovrastrutture'. Definitely the best of Opal Tapes' latest batch - purported to be their last for a little while. Hope this one makes it to vinyl… Recommended!
Hot on the heels of his lovely 'King Bromliad' 12", Floating Points deals another one-sided treat for the DJs and dancers. 'Sparkling Controversy' has all the hallmarks of a sterling F.P. joint - cone-caressing subs, dusted drums and effervescent keys - given nuff room to slyde and rub up the slinkiest sorta dancefloor friction.
Slamming techno from London's Dax J. This is the sort of stuff that makes you dance like a gurning Bushwhacker; straight-up pounders with busy 909 programming streaked by moody synths.
A pair of lush, sultry deep house grooves taken from Ron Trent's follow-up LP to 'Raw Footage'. No quick fixes here, taking all the time he needs to really cast his spell.
Super stylish, wavy disco/house, Frankfurt style, from Lennard Poschmann aka Orson Wells on his 2nd 12" for Live at Robert Johnson. In possession of the sharpest rimshots we've heard in ages - we're big rimshot fans o'er here - the four tracks of 'Open Light' feel timelessly fresh and effective. 'Drifting' does just that with sparkling synth arpeggios and kinkiest rimshot patter set to a suave 112bpm swing, and the gorgeous 'Sky Traffic' tickles slinkier cowbells and floating chords with a poetic flourish recalling vintage analords and Italian techno moments. 'It Takes Two To Tango' hinge… Read more
Trim, ambient garage and D&B from another newcomer on R&S' Apollo series. "Akin's sound has taken in influences from moving between the Midlands, Australia’s famous surf coast and his current base in Bristol. In his own words "Morphing landscapes are a constant theme of my work, ever changing by nature." His music process mixes self-recorded instrumentation and field recordings and interprets these in the studio into his signature soundscapes. The six tracks on his debut EP (including one collaboration with 3rdeye) continue label boss Renaat Vandepapeliere's love of mellow, electronica and … Read more