Monday, 23 March
The strangest and strongest album we've heard yet from avant-garde traveller, Felicia Atkinson. Arriving from Oregon, USA, via the French Alps base of Shelter Press - the publishing platform she runs with Bartolomé Sanson - it unfolds a highly visual sonic topography built upon collaged and randomly selected texts taken from her 2014 publication, 'Improvising Sculpture as Delayed Fictions', plus 'Rechereche de la Base et du Sommet' (René Char, 1955), and 'Madame Edwarda' (Georges Bataille, 1937). We're informed that the production is DIY, recorded with super basic software … Read more
Brooklyn's Denetia & Sene debut on Rinse with a curious pop hybrid of thumping slow disco and gothic R&B.
Carl Michael Von Hausswolff and Martin Rössel posture a heavy techno-rock sound on the penultimate edition of Raster-Noton's Unun series. Effectively bringing the project full circle to Mika Vainio's earlier 'Vandal' EP, the Swedish veterans of avant-garde and pop swagger balls-out with the crushing lurch of 'Leibniz' before tacking to more experimental arrangements with mutant Balearic chug of 'Ramon Llull' and the convulsive croaks and drones of 'Calculus' warranting comparisons with Nick Klein or Emptyset.
Richard Chartier presents an expanded digital version of the elusive Pinkcourtesyphone release, 'Three Themes', made available after a micro-run of 10 x 7" copies for Superior Standards in 2012. Also sharing elements with his magical 'Foley Folly Folio' album, it unfurls long versions of the gorgeous ambient drifts, 'Afternoon' and 'Evening' themes, plus the doomier envelope mix of '62000 Valentines' to soundtrack your come-downs and come-ons.
A quartet of proggy rave boosters from from Warp. Ranges from super-bright breakbeat 'ardcore rush, 'Silver Sun' to the rattling techno of 'To Live And Die In Grantham', thru a buoyant chug-off 'Springtime Linn', to the widescreen sound designs of 'Unfurla Cremated'.
Jam City flourishes a breathtaking pop sound with his not-so-difficult 2nd LP, 'Dream A Garden'. Phase-shifting from the sleek contours of his seminal 'Classical Curves' to a much grittier, slower and bittersweet style laced with his own vocals, he discerns a gap in contemporary electronic/pop music, and proceeds to boldly prise it open, casting coy glances at Prefab Sprout, Prince and Talk Talk from the midst of his finely-layered, swirling arrangements. It's the antithesis to the Club Constructions - themselves influenced by his own reductionist style - stitching a dis-affected heart t… Read more
Monday, 16 March
'Music for Amplified Keyboard Instruments' is a beautiful synth music obscurity by a largely unsung hero of the genre, David Borden. Originally released in 1981 on the little-known Red label outta Holland, it has been reclaimed from the safety masters and reissued for your delectation by John Elliott's Spectrum Spools nearly 33 years later. Quite understandably, many heads are suffering synth ennui with the sheer tide of forgettable reissues in circulation right now, but this one is like a sad beacon in swelling seas, radiating the sweetest melodies and harm… Read more
Beppu (The Boats) ratchets the industrial levels on the second part of an album trilogy that started with 'Coercion' in 2014. With 'Persuasion' he allows the machines to lead the compositional process, letting himself be taken into the red by unrelenting, Vainio-style noise pulses and four-to-the-floor kicks with rail-gun 16ths side-chained to near-oblivion with a bone-head momentum. Sonically, we can trace the record's roots back thru the narky grooves of Spanish industrialists, Esplendor Geometrico, while the album name and track titles pay tribute to J.A.C. Brown's book on brainwashing, 'Tec… Read more
**Strong, Dilla-meets-Morricone-at-Gaslamp Killer's-place vibe on this one** "Instrumental psychedelic hip-hop hybrid Lilacs & Champagne spent their first two albums shining a light on the darkest corners of vintage European cinematic oddities. Their eponymous debut album and the follow-up, Danish & Blue, were warped, psychedelic takes on damaged funk and b-movie film scores. With their palette now thoroughly smeared, coconspirators Emil Amos and Alex Hall are flirting with the makings of a masterpiece in Midnight Features Vol. 2: Made Flesh. From the mournful… Read more
"Brittle Love is a suite of songs scratched together from the teary depths of a computerised pop dream. From a few raggedy Technicolor melodies bloom luscious strings, xylophones, and drum machines. But something’s not quite right: you can almost hear the sticky-tape holding together the synthesisers, the vocals are forever slipping away from the beat. This is pin-point electronic music put together with Early Learning Centre scissors, a pot of PVA glue, and a page of Lonely Hearts classifieds ripped from a regional newspaper. Joe Snape makes precise music in bright colours with the help … Read more
Digital reissue of a 2001 Muslimgauze ace. Worth checking for the fizzy stepper, 'Rebiana Sand Sea' alone.
Spicy Muslimgauze digital reissue, originally released on Minidisc in 1998. This is Bryn Jones in noisy mode, operating right at the biting point with a secret blend of distorted studio 'erbs. In four parts he wrecks some deadly drum loops with excoriating noise pressure, drifting from more meditative, glitch-clipped dub in Part 1 thru some lethal drums and reversed string loop friction in Part 2, onto the deep fried chops of Part 3, and the squashed drum n' noise fruit of Part 4. There are few artists who can hypnotise and sustain our attention with such minimal means as Muslimgauze. This is a prime example.
For the first time, Muslimgauze's 1998 session for the Mort Aux Vaches series, recorded at VPRO Holland, is available to download. The original 52 minute set is broken down to three parts. Accompanied by Ryan Moore (The Legendary Pink Dots) and Werner Durand, the live session renders a radically different take on Muslimgauze's usual aesthetic; freeing up the loops and oscillating between dub density an much more open space. It definitely still a Muslimgauze album, but not quite as you know it. Check!
First download issue of Muslimgauze's 2000AD album, 'Baghdad'. Written in Manchester, 1998, it's a typically challenging and ruffneck session by the prolific artist, dealing in salty, distroted dub for the most, with prime highlights found in outstanding darkside flex of 'Ceylon Dagger' with its deep Berlin dub chords and mad vocal breakdown, or in the strange disconnect between ornithological chirps, trim tablas, subs and fragrant vocal in 'Morphina Gobi'.
**Debut edition of intriguing, minimalist composition** "Reckno is extremely proud to present the first art artefact under his own name by composer, listener, artist and all round great human Alan James Read. Two ever changing yet always the same minimalist compositions. This music doesn't have many obvious parallels; metallophone hail stones falling on a well tuned roof or an American primitive one string Zen ensemble. Visions of a robotic harpist in a sunlit field, the sky is a metallic blue; ancient and futuristic, stationary and swirling, a 3D audio sculpture of a waterfall."
Fractured, intra-dimensional raveries from a very promising new artist plucked out by Reckno - home to Kinlaw, Joane Skyler… Imagine what Maria Minerva might sound like had she been raised on jungle and gauzy IDM rather than '90s house, and you're within grasp of 'Oh Tina No Tina'. Naif, nursey rhythm lyrics and half-heard glossolalia perfuse an bloom in the cracks of rickety lo-fi structures, whether explicitly alluding to late '90s jungle in the crumbling hard-step and wilting ambient chords of 'Simon Peter James', or implicitly bound to dancehall in the exotic sway of 'Bounce 70… Read more
Spilling forth from his Opal Tapes debut, James Place offers the scrambled ambient coordinates of 'Living On Superstition'. Working in æther between the gritty loop deviations of Harmonious Thelonious and Not Waving's dusty radiophonics, Place nimbly clips and nudges frayed phrases into spectral misshapes and fluidly offset grooves. A few of them could likely work on leftfield dancefloors, especially the filter-clogged string samples and hazy tones rubbed and synched into 'High Rise (Rainier)' or the Gold Panda-esque strobing chords and knobbly bass rhythm of Lyra's Grin', whi… Read more
Epic five minutes from Shlohmo: rustling chimes precipitate a wide Reese bass and crashing drums on a footwork/D&B tip also favoured by Lee Bannon, before peaking out with post-rock energy and collapsing back to whence it came.
Ms. Herndon's latest laptop exploits herald her 'Platform' album, forthcoming on 4AD. 'Interference' could be considered a follow-up the trance peaks of 'Fade' from her 'Movement' LP - a roiling shock of forward trance-tronics dense with chopped, refractive vocals and chaotic harmony reminding of T C F's ecstatic data overloads.
Inga Copeland flexes a new moniker and altered palette in the surreal chamber pops of 'RELAXIN' with Lolina'. At an avant intersection of R&B, dancehall minimalism and electro-pop, Lolina creates her own world of sonic oddity and nursery rhyme delivery. The self-titled opener sounds like Autechre's 'Piezo' given a lo-fi baroque pop make-over, while the MIDI keys and grubby bounce of 'Miss Understood' warp like a funfair mirror version of a Palmistry riddim. Most unsettling of all, 'Relaxx' hits stranger pleasure centres with deliciously discordant piano and disconcerting vocal reminding us of Carole Caroompas. It's really kinda genius.