Monday, 02 December
Marcell Dettmann and Head High (Shed) take Modeselektor and Apparat's three-headed beast to the 'floor. In his raving Head High mode René Pawlowitz aka Shed retools 'Bad Kingdom' as a moody rave-pop anthem with a scuffed garage-techno chassis, making great use of the originals soaring chords and Sascha Ring's pleading vocal over gritty, swinging rhythm engine. Dettmann's remix is squared at peaktime use with a sort of industrial carnival techno momentum mauled with coruscating distortion for unrelenting effect.
Atom ™, Kangding Ray and Ancient Methods revamp These Hidden Hands' album tracks for the 'floor. In Uwe Schmidt aka Atom ™'s hands, 'When Told' becomes a sprung, roiling techno weapon rent with dazzling spatial diffusions and streaking, Deathprod-like synthlines whilst saving that gloomy vocal for the most crucial moment. With 'Diesel' Kangding Ray flexes some brute, driving techno muscle, and Ancient Methods lock 'Isopod' down to a determined drone techno march...
Clipping the heels of their killah 'Genesis EP', Mumdance & Logos rinse off 2013 with two searing 'ardcore mutations for Tectonic. Recalibrating the genes of '93-style jungle with bootybass claps, pneumatic bass and razing mentasms, the darkcore dread of 'Legion' is tilted at the most delirious hours of the dance, whilst 'Proto' comes with a kaotic chemistry of Belgian techno hoovers, Detroit-style pads and timeless darkside swerve. Watch yer eyebrows!
"Vanessa (A Dreamer) is the second 12” from Brooklyn-based artist Divvorce on Fifth Wall, the imprint he founded last February with Hound Scales. Drawing influence from such pretentious sources as Franz Kafka, the early work of Darren Aronofsky, and a solitary walk through the streets of Paris during Fashion Week, the EP consists of two compact slices of techno(?) and two remixes. First is the meandering, dreamlike “Wander 7,” followed by the truculent but jubilant “Roquentin’s Release” and finishing with remixes by fellow Fifth Wall artists Physical Therapy and Unklone."
Sterling Sound Signature debut 12" from 22 year old Detroiter, Jay Daniel. Ruff, rugged, and driving, the 'Scorpio EP' yields four tracks steeped in classic 313 house styles, and blessed with an irrepressible vitality bound to work marvels on the 'floor. A-side 'No Love Lost' eases in with a tight blend of Omar-S like keys and bustling machine groove programmed with the itchy swing of Howard Thomas or Kyle Hall, and 'Brainz' knuckles down to a proper buck session a la Anthony Shakir, all noisy, tracky drums with nary a care for melody. B-side is a proper disco heater, 'I Have No Name… Read more
Classy, timeless deep house done Berlin-style by Ji-Hun Kim and Julian Braun for the quietly consistent Just Another Beat label. 'Somewhere Else It's Going To Be Good' is a lovely debut album, mingling new versions of tracks from their two 12"s with a brace of brand new recordings tracing similar connections between brake pedalling deep house and electronica/ambient home listening. The pace rarely trouble the 120bpm barrier, tending more to the Balearic tempos with warm, padded machine grooves and dusty but lucid melodies recalling early AFX and Global Communications.
In the running for best title of the year, Automatic Tasty's 'Sentimentalist's Choice' is a fine session of Braindancing quirks from Sheffield's Central Processing Unit label. The lad's latest release follows issues for Ireland's Lunar Disko and Acroplane Recordings with four tracks ranging from the Larry Heard-like bassline programming and Other People Place vibes of the title track to slick but low-key electro-funk sounding like a long-lost Detroit vibe on 'Late In The Afternoon', thru to bleeping early '90s techno of 'Praise Brigade' and the sweetly harmonised AFXian acid of 'Window Funk'.
British techno veteran Ben Sims steams thru 44 tracks in 70 minutes on his Fabric 73 entry. Kicking off with his pal Paul Mac's Kryptic Minds collaboration, 'Icon', the mix takes in some of the freshest techno and jackin' house releases around, scanning recent aces from Alden Tyrell, J Tijn, Clouds, L-Vis 1990, Mike Dehnert, Fokus Group, Ø, Truncate, Gingy & Bordello, Marcel Dettmann, Ben Klock, Rod and many, many more. Pounders a plenty.
Tight Brum-style bangers from Berlin's Sleeparchive. Taking cues from classic Downwards and German EBM the 2nd part of Tresor's 'A Man Dies In The Street (Pt.2)' sessions ranges from jagged, synthline driven romps to tense, metallic pounders and sub-heavy bleeping minimalism, all built with the kind of infectiously prodding efficiency you'd hope from this fella.
Rekids sift out five remixes by German producers and producers based in Berlin. Includes Marcel Dettmann's early remix of Mr. G piece, 'U Askin?' and the rugged Ben Klock timepiece mix of Jamie Anderson and Deepgroove's 'The Clock', plus a minimal, pumping Ryan Elliott remix of Nikola Gala, and Roman Flügel's trance-wsie remix of Radioslave's 'My Bleep'.
Jimmy Edgar pumps out three electro, house and trap grooves on his Ultramajic label. Two cuts, 'Ultraviolet' and 'Qlinda' give it up for Chicago with hard-edged, booty-clapping drums and stinging electro synthlines, whilst 'Mercurio' finds a fine blend of Berlin-style dub chords, rugged trap fills and weighty subbass for the slinkier dancers.
*Ships Friday* **Marbled sky blue wax in debossed, reverse card jacket ** James Fox explores swinging, dubbed-out garage-techno grooves on his 2nd EP as Severn Beach, backed with smart Rick Grant and Leon Vynehall assistance. On 'We Continue' he synchs crisp hi-hats, rimshots and wiggly bass with debonaire synth pads for the high rollers, before linking with Rick Grant on the rolling square bass and shifty drums of 'Slow Clap' and handing 'We Continue' to Leon Vynehall for a more in-depth Basement Dub.
XDB, Steven Tang, and Carsten Jost & DJ Richard rework the poised deep house of Lawrence's 'Films & Windows' album. 'Angels at Night' is reframed in contrasting perspectives; XDB reworks it with gritty shuffle and lovely mystic house vibes building to a stepping finale, and Steven Tang tempers it to a ghostly, driving sound somewhere between Jamal Moss and Convextion. Lawrence's Dial Records co-founder, Carsten Jost and White Material's DJ Richard give 'Marlen' a rolling, sub-aquatic techno-house revision.
Jesse Somfay's Borealis alias offers up a muscular stack of dark and moody rave electronica. The enduring influences of early '90s hardcore and techno are amped with the energy of contemporary production for an expansive, sweeping suite taking in widescreen trance on 'Foldfrost' along with the peaking techno of 'Pewter Sigh', and at best, hgis unique style of rugged swing in highlights such as 'Angelsmoke' and the Darling Farah-like 'Nightlong Language' or the rogue hardstyle of 'Streamsnare'.
Spaced-out deep house trips from the Rush Hour camp. Maxi Mill's 2nd 12" proper offers two contrasting cuts: 'Lost And Found' balances new age voices and dusty, dubbed out atmospheres on a brilliant FM synth bassline with a strange, ambiguous, out-of-time-and-place appeal to psych the 'floor; 'Speed Balance Weight' is a deft upstepper pivoting off ricochet rimshots with agile bass stabs and cool, minimal riffs reminding us of MRSK's style.
Ms Kraviz follows her classy debut album with this collection of unreleased and early material. 'Mr. Jones' includes the eponymous B-side from her early Rekids single shimmied up against the tantric 12 minute session of 'Desire', a twinkling Afro-beat infused groover, 'Black White' and the seductively low-lit sweetness of 'So Wrong' and the mesmerising 'Sheer' plus the subtly building techno-house arrangement of 'Remember' with Luke Hess.
**Metallic-ink embossed and letter-pressed jacket** Strong techno-house/electronica trax from the Belgian collaboration of Sagat, &apos and Walrus. Their muscular and mind-bending 'Kikkerkelik' synchs driving kick/bassline with a a twirling, virulent synthline that burrows deep and tweaks the nerves, whilst 'Kaketu' works out a big-bottomed acid house chug stung with sharp EBM stabs and 'Swth Central' gets down with a spaced out and swinging Detroit techno vibe.
Leeds-based producer follows his 10" for Lone's Magic Wires label with a powerful 3-track single for Berlin's Leisure System. 'Kronos' brings a Neil Landstrumm-style ragga-techno rave vibe, whereas the swinging flex of 'Mesonoxian' dices with moody mix of techno and sprung Yorkshire bassline sounds and 'LS6' pounds out a prime Berghain techno tattoo.
Barcelona's Hivern Discs team up with Young Turks to give The xx a dope disco makeover. Marc Piñol turns 'Fiction' into a chugging balearic disco fact with canny Larry Heard-style bassline and Mistakes Are OK give 'Reunion' a much happier outcome with unravelling triplet groove, choral pads and a triumphant finale. Round hears 'Missing' as a piece of piano-house-pop in the vein of Everything But The Girl's moody '90s pop classics, and New Jackson turns 'Swept Away' into a grown-up late night shuffler.
Rod returns for a 2nd session of lithe, hypnotic techno tools on Ben Klock's label. 'Anindica' meditates on modulating acid sequences and rattling old-skool 909 rhythms intent for strobe-lit peaktime action. 'Hux' is slinkier, sensual, riding dubbed-out, building chords and deft, swinging hi-hats with nods to classic M-Series and reminding of Shed's EQ'd tools.
Melodic, London-style tech-house backed with remixes by U and Quarion. Love & Mercy's debut EP strides between the sweet but gritty swing of 'Rainfall' and the tumbling breakbeats and bass workout 'Polytomy' to U's grubbing, basslin-heavy rework of 'Polytomy' and a light-footed, trance-infected Quarion remix of 'Rainfall'.
Plush, deeper tech-house pop on Hypercolour. Three cuts shimmy from melodic, melancholy swing on 'Distorted Symmetry' to the pirouetting arpeggios and posh-trancey builds of 'The Shape Of It' and a gritty kicker called 'I was Born To A Woman From Space'.
Powerful, deep-playign big room techno roller by Mote-Evolver regular, Psyk, released by CLR.
Classy, diverse grip of trax from Milan's Boot & Tax for Optimo Trax. Lead cuit 'Acido' is a stripped back acid swagger with anthem potential written all over it, whereas 'Egon' beams out into cosmic techno-disco space, and 'The Simone' dices with dubbed-out wave disco charm beside the spaghetti western Italo of 'Comprendes'.
Dark 'n sleazy house funk from Finnish player, Arttu. 'UFO Funkin'' has the sexy, alien drive of Detroit's Blake Baxter or Juan Atkins, but done with a stripped down, rugged flair of his own, whilst 'Passing Out Privileges' leans in with a Larry Heard-like bassline and scuffed, barely-hinged jakkers drums bound to send 'em wild.
Alkan returns to the 'floor with chromed-out chords in 'A Hold On Love', psychoactive acid on 'Bang!' and a weird, chopped up breakbeat number 'Check Out Your Mind'.