Monday, 08 November 2010
It's been a long while since we've heard from Carl Finlow, and although this new EP from Cultivated Electronics doesnt actually feature any new work from the great man himself, its good to get a little reminder of what it is he does so well. On remix duties are two of Finlow's musical disciples - Sync 24 and Morphology, who treat the original material with all the care you'd expect, delivering a flawlessly produced machine funk double-header you'd be well advised to check if you're a follower of Andrea Parker's Touchin' Bass crew or, indeed, Finlow himself.
The debut album from Japanese quartet Bo Ningen fuses psych-rock and spaced-out fuzz pedal abuse to tremendous effect, announcing itself with the sublime crunching motif of '4 Seconds To Ascension', a riff that might be a kind of gloopy, hyperactive distant cousin to Jimi Hendrix's 'Fire'. The album progresses at a blistering pace, tackling the kraut-ish 'Yurarura Kaeru' like a less single-minded Wooden Shjips with interlocking guitars and yelped vocals, before making the Hawkwind-meets-Fugazi racket of 'Koroshitai Kimochi (Reprise). In their quieter moments they transpire to be just as int… Read more
Truly mesmerizing outernational rhythm trips from Mark Ernestus (Rhythm & Sound) and Burnt Friedman, reinterpreting secret rhythms from Freidman and Jaki Liebezeit. The Ernestus mix of '5' is a stealthily paced and loose groove, tucking Liebezeit's drumming into ornate swirls with a tumbling cadence, gradually adding of kilter stabs low in the mix until a final flourish of arabesque washes seals the cut with a sombre mood. Burnt Friedman's own mix of '7' has a more defined Afro-lilt with evolving rhythms finding a stumbling groove together with Daniel Schroter's B… Read more
Detroit rockers Tyvek make their In The Red debut with this insanely rowdy and dazzlingly succinct collection of punk-rock missives. Apparently Tyvek have been known to manifest themselves as a five-piece, but this sophomore album from the band marks a streamlining of their sound, reducing their number to a trio and in so doing reshaping their sound into a traditional DIY garage format. There's no beating around the bush here, and the band are underway with a Ramones-gone-wrong intro of "Four, Three, One Two!" on the opening cut (titled '4312', funnily enough) and clearly Nothing Fits is the… Read more
Deeper blue shades of tech-house from Washington, DC's Benoit & Sergio, making their debut on Spectral. This version includes the vocal, plus an Acapella for those of you who want to get busy.
Psych-folk combo Fern Knight return for a third release on the VHF label (their fourth album in all), and as with the key works of contemporaries like Espers and Feathers it harnesses a sound that's greatly indebted to the far-out, acid-inflected sounds of bands like Comus as well as fusionist acts like Pentangle and Fairport Convention. Prog also plays a part here: 'Epitaph' is a cover of the King Crimson song, and it's handled quite brilliantly. Frontwoman Margaret Ayre leads a beautiful arrangement that boasts wonderful cello parts and typically lyrical harp lines courtesy of Jesse Spar… Read more
Monday, 01 November 2010
Hyperdub seal Terror Danjah's position at the top of UK Grime with his stone cold solid 'Undeniable' album, featuring guest spots from Mz Bratt, Griminal, D Double E, Bruza, and Lauren Mason. Unlike his 'Gremlinz' LP, or previous 'Hardrive' volumes this feels much more like an artist album proper, rather than a "best of" or a collection of recent riddims. Basically all the fat has been trimmed to reveal 14 heavyweights portraying Terror in his most futuristic form, dispensing with UK Funky - Danjah styles - on 'Breaking Bad', and performing Wiley-style Devil fixes on classic material wi… Read more
Numbers aim high with the debut release from hotly tipped vocalist Jessie Ware, mightily reinforced with production from masked-man-of-the-hour, SBTRKT. 'Nervous' is basically where the UK underground is at right now, in flux between frictional elements of Garage rhythms, melodic Electro-Boogie synths and deft Tech-House sophistication. With SBTRT's dextrous programming and Jessie Ware's diva-next-door vocals this is one of the years most distinctive club tracks. Shifting up two gears, SBTRKT flies solo on 'Fright' with twitching, forward-leaning propulsion and very canny bassline form… Read more
Local Action step up their game with a much poppier offering from Deep Teknologi's T. Williams featuring Terri Walker, backed with a remarkable Mosca remix. 'Heartbeat' has seemingly stored up the heat it built up over the summer in the sets of Four Tet, Ben UFO, Brackles, Toddla T and the rest, to work like an autumnal Funky radiator, layered with sun-baked vocals from recent Roc-A-Fella signee Terri Walker over supple bass and a totally classic-sounding synth arrangement. The effect is somewhere between street level Funky and more classy fodder from Ame or Henrik Schwarz. Mosca… Read more
Werk Discs' core member, Lukid, drops his third album for the label, including three previously released tracks and two handfuls of brand new cuts. Usefully enough, the hovering drone of 'Chord', the smudged slowhouse of 'Saddlebags' and the Dilla-esque 'Veto' from his 'Foma' album make their debut appearance on wax, congruously slotting amongst a largely downtempo and heavy-headed set of home listening material. Lukid's music has never really been intended for the club, and the best way to digest the eight new tracks is from the most comfortable chair you can find, preferably with a brew and a biscu… Read more
An utterly absorbing and time-dilating double LP of masterful synth music from one of the scene's most prolific and respected sons, Expo 70 aka Justin Wright, together with Matt Hill - who recently dropped that brilliant Umberto album on Not Not Fun. Aiming a few notches above the reams of DIY tape spools, 'Where Does Your Mind Go?' was recorded professionally at the studio of Jason Meagher (No Neck Blues Band) in upstate New York over the course of one evening and features production values worthy of the D&M vinyl cut and full-colour, tip-on gatefold sleeve. The four tracks total… Read more
Returned from the core of the sphere of the unknown, Space Dimension Controller delivers a luscious double pack for R&S, and on marbled vinyl to boot. There are few in modern techno/house/electro quarters who haven't been charmed by his 12"s on Royal Oak and Kinnego, and that number is set to increase with these seven tracks. The epithet adorning both plates "Created aboard the Electropod of a time-trapped futurist" neatly encapsulates 'Temporary Thrillz', from the silvery electrosoul shimmer of 'Mercurial Attraction', to the Anti-G slide of '2EZ (Autopilot's Lament)'… Read more
Alpha Pup rope in a seriously hefty roll call of remixers, taking tracks from Nosaj Thing's 'Drift' into new dimensions. Most impressive are the Dorian Concept and Jamie xx versions. The former flipping 'Voices' with his astro-dynamic arrangement for a mystical, far-eastern feel in anti-G, while the latter creates a sublime rhythmic tension with bobbling halfspeed switches and almost deliriously woozy compressions with a dark, melancholy effect. Of course that's not to discount Jon Hopkins' noisily explosive electro mix of 'Us', the psychedelic ultrafunk of the Daedelus mix, and a rare piece of Dntel loveliness on his version of 'Us'. Very classy stuff.
Chris & Cosey's 2nd album for Rough Trade, 'Trance' was originally released a year after their seminal 'Heartbeat' LP, in 1982. Now reissued with impeccable timing in the midst of a cold wave revival. The genius electronic auteur, Chris Carter, and the agent provocateur, Cosey Fanni Tutti moved into even darker territory with these eight tracks, using Chris's dynamic studio innovations and Cosey's notorious imagination to articulate unspoken feelings of darkest misanthropy. The atmosphere of 'Trance' is unremittingly overcast and reassuringly darkside, from the cyber-tribal ritual sequences of… Read more
Best known as a founding member of Tarentel and The Alps, Jefre Cantu-Ledesma returns with a brand new album for Type having previously released solo material through Spekk, Arbor and his own label, Root Strata. "Love Is A Stream" marks a radical rethink of the classic dream-pop template, taking an impressionist's brush to the established genre traits. Full of noise and expertly sculpted feedback, tracks such as 'Loving Love' feel like an all-analogue take on Fennesz's noisier moments, complete with hazy exchanges between skyscraping major 7th chords; you might equally sugge… Read more
Helixir drops his debut album for 7even, armed with ten brand new tracks including his recent eponymous single. 'Undivided' is essentially the slicker rolling cousin to F's agile 'Energy Distortion' album, putting a breezier and light-footed French spin on the techy garage sound with spacious dub awareness and a frothy feel for melody and trippy harmonics. 'Sumemrtime' sets the effervescent steppy garage sound just in time for autumn, while 'Quiet Storm' flexes some bristling dub-tech chops and the ace 'Atlantis' combines almost Raymond Scott-like melodic bloops with murky bass flow in unique s… Read more
Deeper Funky freshness from DJ Dom, Brackles & Shortstuff's uni mate. His four tracks fall very neatly in line with previous PTN drops from Hypno, Hackman and Doc Daneeka, treading that line between BLN-style Deep House and LDN Funky. Our favourite has to the sublime 'Plastic People' with it's Mr. De-alike electrosexual synthwork, or the filtered acid squirm of 'Untitled', while the flipside contains the more percussive, almost Broken Beat sound of 'Boss Mode' and the naked glow of 'Computer Love'. Keep an eye out for his forthcoming releases on Blunted Robots!
Ten Chi-town classics culled from the esteemed catalogue of DJ International. From the sounds of it they've all been mastered from vinyl, but that really only adds to the nostalgic effect of these gems. House pioneer Chip E opens with the freestyle-infected 'If You Only Knew', followed by an alllllll-time classic in Fingers Inc's swooning 'Mystery Of Love' and a soul-powered jacker from Frankie Hollywood and Ricky D 'Feel The Fire'. JM Silk slicks it up with 'Music Is The Key', followed by the awesome 'Can U dance' from Fast Eddie, disco … Read more
No, your eyes do not deceive you, this is a brand new release from the notoriously work-shy Isolee, dropping two beautifully judged tracks for Dial. 'Toern' sets the pace to deep and squidgy mnml House (what else?) subtly propelled by a liquid loose bassline and stealthily hypnotic percussive quirks, but the best feature has to be those almost blink-and-you'll-miss-em pitch shifts, nudging the synthline just off course to brilliantly trippy effect. The title track initially reduces the elements further, working with a slower, undulating bass groove accumulating laye… Read more
"The previously unreleased spooked-out psychedelic-jazz score to 70s Czech's 'other' favourite teenage witch flick." 'Saxana - The Girl On A Broomstick' is another Finders Keepers truffle hunted from the archives of the studio that brought you 'Valerie And Her Week Of Wonders', one of the most celebrated reissues in their immense catalogue. It includes the entire studio sessions (plus psychedelic effects) written by Angelo Michajlov and performed by the Karel Vlach Orchestra, 27 tracks in total including truly hefty sleevenotes from Andy Votel (we could barely pul… Read more
Matthewdavid's Leaving Records - home to records from Ras G, Dak and Oscar McClure among others - expand their remit with Sumsun's excellent debut album. Taking cues from the most psyched end of Indie pop a la Animal Collective, the cosmic noise of the LA beats scene and the kind of boogie/proto-house sounds Maxmillion Dunbar has been exploring, Sumsun sets an invitingly tropical and heady agenda. 'Ants' opens with a smudged Balearic rhythm embedded in acres of filtered and effected harmonic noise, kinda like Panda Bear in a Lacoste trackie. On a slow-motion tip 'Wind Stone' is again swamped … Read more
Four Tet is latest in line to remix The XX, dropping a lithe, discofied version of 'VCR'. There's seemingly not a week that goes by without a new Four Tet remix but he's not slacking with this material, sprinkling the trio with his magic kraut-disco dust for a warm and twinkly piece of dancefloor pop with his trademark crisp drums and charming synthlines cushioning the vocal. Lovely.
Arne Weinberg dons his Onmutu Mechaniks guise for two deeply dubbed techno tracks backed with a superb XDB remix. The systolic throb of 'Lupus Moon' sets the ambiance with stereo-panned midnight dub chords and velveteen synth textures, which XDB duly beefs up with firm jacking bass and mnml bleeps, sounding kinda like a more shadowy Levon Vincent production. One for the deepest techno and dub house heads.
"Wareika Hill Sounds is the contemporary roots reggae project of Calvin Cameron - mainstay of the original Light Of Saba line-up, the genius behind Lambs Bread Collie - who to this day lives above the headquarters of the mystic Revelation Of Rastafari, in the Wareika district of Kingston, Jamaica. In the great pedagogical traditions of the multi-cultrual Light Of Saba, and before that Count Ossie, this new recording runs together two JA musical traditions - a kind of drumming (and drum) brought from the Congo, and the island's variation of calypso - into a thundering grouna… Read more