Monday, 22 December
Shackleton triggers another tribalist chain reaction with 'Deliverance Series No. 2'. Shack presents two extended trips subtly refining his craft to a fluid, rhythmelodic flux sparking with vital, hypnotic energy. The eleven minute 'Dominion Rings' coolly charges up percolating drums and fizzing synth dynamics to a signature lather of lilting groove and keening pads linked with a lattice of dub-fried electronics to a staggered polymetric finale. 'Cast The Die' deals in a more worldly fusion of Eastern-gazing chant, Raga-like motifs and natty percussive patter with a queered eldritch quality that's Shackleton to the core.
'X I E' is the first new Monolake release since the 'Ghosts' (2012). It marks his return to tensile steppers dynamics and brooding sci-fi atmospheres following an exploration of reduced D&B structures. 'Xor' unfolds a 127bpm tech-step pattern harking back to the styles of his 'Polygon_Cities'-era recordings; 'Inwards' is a cinematic panorama of grey-skied, beat-less sci-fi themes rife with brooding Berlin connotations; 'Ethernet' rolls in that narrow gap between Teutonic techno and Bristolian dub dread, anchoring slinky hi-hats with darkside bass propulsion a la Pinch and his patented ambient sound design.
**Upfront Exclusive** Coyote Kings round up the cream of underground instrumental grime - Famous Eno, Strict Face, Yamaneko and co - for 'Coyote Kings Vol.2'. It's quite possibly one of the most extreme collections of this sound we've heard in 2014, from the sheer, widescreen minimalism of Chemist's searing 'Fall Back' and the raving onslaught of 'Puzzlebox Riddim' by famous Eno to the dizzying spar of elements in Strict Face's 'Taipan Showers', and especially in the piercing, lip-bitingly tight licks or 'Rinse Compressor' by new name, Underclass, or T_A_M with the squashed, squirming dread roil of 'Graze Tha Trax'. Wicked session.
**Incredible reissue exploring the largely unknown work of Else Marie Pade - a true pioneer of electronic music and musique concrète** Wow this is a stunner. Else Marie Pade's 'Electronic Works 1958-1995' is a truly precious survey of a lone, pioneering voice in electronic music. Born in Aarhus, Denmark, in 1924, Else created the first piece of electronic music played on Danish radio, 'Syv Cirkler (Seven Circles)', marking the early development of an (up until now) largely hidden body of work inspired by her experiences while interred at a Nazi prison camp as a teenage… Read more
Xhin heads up chapter 3 of the 'Five Years of Artefacts' series alongside tracks from Tommy Four Seven, Kangding Ray and Dscrd. 'Blade Moth' by Xhin is also the best on offer, slashing whipcracked white noise over perpetual kick drum motion for the stompers; Tommy Four Seven does his excoriating techno muck thing with 'FFFFF'; Kangding Ray churns up the wleting bass and spintered drums of 'Luna'; Dscrd does mucky industrial things with the sludgy force of 'Apparition Hill'.
Bay Area junglist Lee Bannon presents a sweeping follow-up to his much-loved 'Alternate/Endings' album for Ninja Tune. Signed to leftfield hip hop powerhouse Babygrande Records, 'Main / Flex' sounds like a long-lost collusion between GZA, Burial and DJ Scud, where Charlie Benante of Anthrax and Teklife's Deejay Earl just happened to pass thru the studio with some seriously loaded hash cakes. In fact, the latter half of that statement isn't fantasy; Benant and Earl do feature, but the rest is all Lee Bannon working out his dreadest '90s demons with hard-cut fusions of rugged hip hop, warehouse-bashing tech-step and rolling, swinging, darkside garage-techno mutations.
Marcel Dettmann's pals do the techno biz: Answer Code Request nails it with a fine balance of lamping, tribal brutality and dizzying Detroit chords; Norman Nodge brings the party with rudest Chicago acid flair; Lockertmatik aka Kryptic Universe serves the cosmic jazz techno-meets-Profan flex of 'M_Lock 4', as heard on Dettmann's Fabric 77 mix; Ryan James Ford impresses most with his near-weightless 'Arthure Iccon' move doing to techno what Logos et al are doing to grime right now.
Russell Haswell joins Philip Best's Consumer Electronics for the face-melting force of 'Estuary Electronics'. Following on from the Mattin-produced 'Crowd Pleaser' (2009), it finds the pioneering duo at their most virile and vital across seven tracks rife with sputtering tech-n0!se and, of course, Best's spray it, don't say it delivery. It's a cruel, vicious f**ker and therein lies its charm in showing up most of their field as dilettantes. Between the flatulent jag of 'Teknon' to the staggering, 'floor bleaching force of 'Co-opted' or the 'Air Lock' monologue that seals the… Read more
Kinky, rugged Portuguese dance music from Violet and the One Eyed Jacks lot. We'd advise drawing straight for the carnivalous acid romp, 'We Had Visions' or the strange, Barnt-like jag of 'Two Edged Sword', and then whack up the Shcuro remix for a messy laugh.
Suave Japanese house boogie from Takuya Matsumoto for Clone's Royal Oak series. 'EKR's Galactic Dance Part 1' rubs out some salty SDC-style jazz-funky electro; 'Part 2' drifts off in a symphonic daydream glyding on strings and padded bass groove. 'The Sun on the Refugees' sounds like Steve Reich meets Titonton, and 'Satellite Orbit Funk' shakes down some Theo Parrish vibes.
Poised club constructions from Frenchman, Sylvere on vol. 3 of Trax Couture's World Series. Four efficiently stripped cuts wurk out tracky drum pattersn between ballroom house, industrial techno and sparse, techy grime, at best in the more melodic swing and dip of 'Hackney' or the mad, percolating funk of 'Industrial Roving'.
Zeitkratzer director, Reinhold Friedl continues his dissection and re-evaluation of classical tropes with this mesmerising investigation of the Neo-Bechstein Grand Piano - the first electronic piano of the 20th century. 'Golden Quinces, Earthed for spatialised Neo-Bechstein' follows from the relative violence of 'Inside Piano' (2011), one of our favourite releases of that year, with a much more subtle approach, using the Neo-Bechstein's in built pick-ups and radio receiver - the first of their kind when invented by Walter Nernst and Hans Dries… Read more
Sweetest 2nd bite of Panda Bear's "…Meets The Grim Reaper" album. 'Boys Latin' takes it title from the name of a prep school in Noah Lennox aka Panda Bear's hometown of Baltimore, Maryland, and comes off like some mad fusion of E.M.A.K. style slow-mo Kosmiche electro with Burial-style woodblock hits and, of course, his percolating, pitching vocal cut-ups. It's a bewt.
Soul-burning deep house set collecting the best of Jovonn's Goldtone label. Includes eight sought-after and foundational gems originally released between 1991-1993 on the New York City-based label, with big highlights in the gritty swing and blazing vocal of 'Be Free (Vocal Mix)', the suave glyde of 'Flutes (165th Street Mix)', the chiming Afro-centric lilt of 'Back to NY/NJ', and the super sweet symphonics of 'Crying Strings'. Prime!
'Svaeninger' is a haunting collaboration between Danish electronic music pioneer, Else Marie Pade, and Danish sound artist Jacob Kirkegaard. Despite their 51 year age gap, the duo clearly see eye-to-eye, or perhaps hear ear-to-ear, in 'Svaeninger', which consolidates their uncanny perspectives of liminal, electronic tone. They both approach the project from a similar background in exploring the very peripheries of sonic phenomena and our perceptions of them. And so with 'Svaeninger' they investigate what happens when they collide their respective Otoacoustic emission… Read more
Scuba back for a 3rd session of naughty Berlin tech-house shuffle as ESS. 'Come' mixes traces of the UK's virulent Jackin' sound with a Breaks-y production palette and proggy, Berlin-ready arrangement.
Monday, 15 December
One of 2014's sickest 12" gets a makeover from Grovestreet, Lotic, Logos and DJ J Heat on PAN's first digi-only release. We've become so familiar with the original cut that it's great to hear some new perspectives on its accelerated vision. M.E.S.H.'s Janus pal, Lotic diffuses the elements in a dazzling display of polymetric acrobatics and complex, sweeping synth shapes; Logos sublimates its structures into widescreen weightless gases and noirish strings with serious late night, gazing-from-the-30th storey appeal. We're also introduced to a pair of relative unknowns: Grovestreet impres… Read more
Kevin Martin and Earth's Dylan Carlson summon the apocalypse in this crushing addendum to 'Angels & Devils'. Devoid of vocals, on both sides the battle-scarred titans bunker down to a fusion of teeth rattling trap and dub rhythms with strung-out, world weary guitars as stripped back and glaring as anything from the album. A-side 'Boa' frames Carlson's contemplative electric guitar strokes inna pregnant, widescreen scene of windswept ambience and keening metallic timbre before delivering worm-charming bass shocks and shuddering trap drums; B-side plays even icier with etheric SAW II-sty… Read more
One of 2014's most virulent labels, 1080p, give Moon B some room to stretch out with the fug-house styles of 'Lifeworld'. Dense with crushed samples lopped from boogie, new age and electro-soul tapes and wax, it's a well stoned mooch around Moon B's ferric headspace, previously glimpsed in his productions for PPU and Going Good. The closest comparison would be DJ Screw mixtapes and Delroy Edwards' 'Slowed Down Funk' sessions, but there's also something more esoteric, dreamy about B's vibe and selection that should be taken with caution if you're listening while driving, y'know? Otherwise, "stuff a stocking wid it!"
**Triple LP includes download code** David Moufang aka Move D reprises his celebrated Reagenz duo with Jonah Sharp aka Space Time Continuum for The Bunker New York, five years since their Workshop album and two decades on from their seminal, eponymous debut LP on Source. A live recording conflation of correlating ideas from jazz, house, and ambient electronica, 'The Periodic Table' plays-through six extended meditations effortlessly, imperceptibly segueing between effervescent machine rhythms, dub house momentum and fractured jazz abstraction over the course of … Read more
Proper fug-house flex from Masks, the new duo of Patricia and Alexis Georgopoulos ov Arp, The Alps a.o. It's dreamiest techno-house soused in ferric noise, pushing deep into the night with the claggy jack of 'Wormhole' parting to the booming kicks and dusty shafts of melody in 'Vapors', alongside an tracky, trancing workout reminding of Legowelt or Xosar in 'Zebra', before easing off the 4/4 kicks for the clipped machine funk flight of 'Fragile Feelings'.
Massive Gorgon Sound versions of Kahn's 'Dread' (2012) missile for Deep Medi. 'Dread' gets a heavy-troddin' gangsta overhaul with bloodshot vocal FX and re-tuned riddmic chassis aimed straight at the biggest speaker stacks. Likewise, 'Late Night Blues' is duppied with darker vibe, making the strings cut nastier, more electroid, and the galvanizing the mid-bass to biting impact.
Matthew Herbert's cut-and-run dancefloor series reaches number 8 with four servings of louche, soulful house in his inimitable style. At its sweetest, the crooke soul of 'The Wrong Place' gets it right with woozy vocals by Hejira's Rahel and the laidback, string-heavy shuffler, 'Remember Ken' with Ade Omotayo, who has worked with Amy Winehouse and Kindness. For something a grittier, get on the twanging, motorik techno-stepper 'Ticket', or the Durian Brothers-esque Afro-centric wiggle and dreamy thumb piano bleeps of 'Her Face'.
Meakusma coax out a dead druggy Porter Ricks remix - their first in 12 years! - on this dubbed out session from Japan's Ryo Murakami. The originals stir up a sub-aquatic roil of elliptical bass hits swarmed with silty electronics and driven into darkest dub crevasses filled with strange voices. The remix from Thomas Köner and Andy Mellwig's Porter Ricks is a masterclass of intangible sound design, rending 'Statical' to the peripheries with fizzing electronics and weighted with an unhurried sub-bass that unfolds below fathoms of heady swirl to a glorious conclusion.
Lil Jabba takes it back to Local Action with a flighty follow-up to his 'Scales' LP and the more recent ace, 'Gully' for True Panther. The '47' EP cycles six triptomatic cuts consolidating coldest instrumental grime, numb trap and dainty footwork with his signature, surreal atmospheres. 'Stalka' starts up with a tetchy trap/grime flex tussling against bittersweet hooks, lush pads; 'Dusty' does footwork tension with stomach-tightening syncopation and soulful swoon. The icy/warm couplet of 'Skates' and 'Tea' check into that same strange, slow and glassy headspace as Mr. Mitch's recent, brilliant d… Read more
Klasse Recordings boss Luca Lozano follows his Optimo Trax session with a trio of rugged early techno-house emulations backed with divine DJ Fett Burger remix. There's a certain turn-of-the'90s vibe to Luca's originals, from the pumping Dance Mania flava and gritty drums of 'Mister Right Now', thru the sub-loaded and killer early hardcore/Belgian rave vibes of 'Come With Me', to the whirring, jacking R&S psychedelia of 'The Afterworld'. DJ Fett Burger's Orgonitt Meme Deep mix is icing on the cake, taking the vibe of 'The Afterworld' to New York City circa 1991 with big ol' Nu Groove-style B-line and drusm wrapped up with mad samples chatter and lush chords. TIPPED!