Sunday, 09 October 2011
First single lifted from Skylar and Piper Kaplan's accomplished debut album. Imagine the scene; wide angled heli-shot of two young blondes, shades on, in denim shorts, white t-shirts, and maybe leather blousons, beating down a coastal highway in a cherry red corvette, but it's all watched by a soviet-era Russian on his government issue TV on the 25th floor of his gruel-grey tower block. Well, we'd easily imagine 'Slivers Of You' to be playing in the background, transporting us and them through the box into a simulated California dream. Perhaps 'I've Got Some Happiness (leland)' is wh… Read more
One from the vaults of Patrick Pulsingers back catalogue, 'Look Straight' is a slice of electronic funk from the viennese crew known as the Private Lightning Six. The track dates from 96 and was released on the little known Gelb records, and is a fantastic taster of their work. Following the beats are some of those jazzy chords that the Cheap crew do so well, add a flowing bassline and some extra snares that crackle across the beat, and you have a wild, dark groove. Interspersed with a telephone call, and a detuned wind instrument, 'Look Straight' brings the genius of 96 b… Read more
"Hair Police member Robert Beatty produces two pieces of lush, womb-like synthesizer melded with hypnotic processed female voice. Highly intricate and textured electronics weave in and out of gelatinous loops of speech with expert precision. Artwork by the artist." Obviously, this is nowhere near as gnarled as Hair Police. In somnambulant mood, Beatty lulls us into a softly glowing, fleshy world of 'Raining Order', textured surfaces glistening with micro-tonal harmonics while a lone lady (Ainsley Wagoner) beckons from the distance, ushering us closer to the core, which just happe… Read more
Surefire Funky 'floor shakers from the Tickles production unit. 'Call 4 Backup's a bit of a beast, working the simple but deadly formula of Dutch Rave synths and infectious Funky swing, while 'Da Growler' tucks into a more percolatin' sort of dutty ruffige, and 'Crater Face' piles in with roguish bleeps and hardcore drum programming for the get down. Tip for the Funky fiends!
In Planet E's 20th year, Carl Craig hands his 'Where Am I' production for The Tribe aka Marcus Belgrave, Phil Ranelin and Wendell Harrison, over to Agoria and Kyle Hall for plush contemporary interpretations. Agoria's 'By The Fireplace' version is a luxurious movement swooning with velvet brushed bass and enriched with lush string orchestrations. Kyle Hall's doesn't quite live up to the maturity of Agoria's seductive sound, but comes authentically close with a sumptuous rearrangement that's at least the poshest track we've heard him produce. For context and balance, the sublime original exemplifies the pinnacle of Detroit jazz sophistication.
Jumbled bag of flavours, from Funky to post-Dubstep, Electro and Footwork from the B. Yrself Division. On a Neo-Garage/Funky-compatible flex, there's the darker warehouse vybe of JTRP & The Phantom's 'Ecstasy', the tribalist flux of Brake 7's 'Pingu' and KNC's Dubbel Dutch-like 'Gone'. Best of all are those cuts which fall broadly in the 808/Footworking catagory, with highlights on ∆∆'s 'Eardrums', the boogie-soul infused Footwork of Keiska's 'Celdi Riddim', and the melancholy blue pressure of Huerco S' 'Got Me Inna Trance'.
Third and final volume of the compilation series aimed at raising funds to help those affected by the Tohoku earthquake in Japan earlier this year. On the LA side, you've got cool cuts from Nguzunguzu, Computer Jay, Daedelus, Monopoly, Matthewdavid, Build An Ark and John Tejada, all offering myriad styles of electronica, Hip Hop and House, and from Japan there's some neat cuts from Quarta 330, AOKI Takamasa, Haruki Matsuo and Daisuke Tanade, among many others, spanning synthpop to 8-Bit electro and Raster.Noton-like Techno, including an introduction to many artists you've probably never heard of before, well, ones that we haven't heard at least.
Cool label compilation checking thirteen years of Electro-Techno from Austria's ace Pomelo imprint. There's some gems worth digging out of here; make sure to check John Tejada on a breakbeat flex remixing The Private Lightening Six, andAlex Cortex's Drexciyan tribute 'Farewell Wavejumper' or Ph03's similarly obsessed 'Long Distance Call'.
Full spectrum, 14-track showcase for this influential Berlin-based indie. Coming up to thirty releases since 2009, it's a fine time to recap on their finest moments, which come from Zola Jesus with the dramatic 'Sea Talk' and 'Vessel' from her 'Conatus' LP, besides the sharp shredding of Marnie Stern's 'Transparency Is The New Mystery', Moon Duo's motorik gem 'Mazes', EMA's tormented femme-rock and the folksy jangle of Laura Gibson's 'Spirited'.
"Wanda and the girls, under the direction of puzzling collagist DEM HUNGER, dive deep into a pool of dirty milk on "Bass Urine." Hand woven fragments of sound are smudged together and tossed into a dubbed-out ocean of strange electronics and abstract depression." Sally (horrible bass), Susan (wet drumset), Sarah (mouth) and Wanda (tape edits and cook) suck us into a subterranean wormhole, diffracting us through shards of broken dub techno, planes of ambient akin to BJ Nilsen and Stilluppsteypa's 'Space Finale' and some unquantifiable, fractal other.
African and jazz-inspired electronic Tech-House. With '1st Floor' they carve out a cool mid-tempo groove with oscillating latin syncopation, mesmerizing bass, brassy synths and dubbed Cabaret vox, all well restrained and with a very sophisticated appeal. '2nd Floor' is slightly more stripped down and smoky, and 'Jazz Shaman' very much indebted to Fela Kuti and the original Afrobeat sound, but with an approach much closer to the Moritz Von Oswald Trio.
Eagerly anticipated 3rd album from Miss Liz Wendelbo and Sean McBride, the svelte figures behind Xeno & Oaklander. It should be fair to say that these two have both spearheaded and produced some of the finest moments in the current Cold Wave revival, and 'with 'Sets & Lights' they prove there's still much life left in the machines yet. Their detached, enigmatic sense of elegance and restraint is core to the sound, from the iced NRG pacing of the title track and its dovetailing male/female vocals, across the beatless scape of 'Untitled' and in the robust Darkwave-Italo propulsion … Read more
If you're new to Throbbing Gristle then, well, shame on you; but don't worry, all's not lost, you can get up to speed with the help of the band's Greatest Hits, newly remastered. First released by Rough Trade in 1980 with the apt subtitle Entertainment Through Pain, it's an unbeatable summary of crucial material from Gen, Chris, Cosey and Sleazy's first three albums (Second Annual Report, DoA: The Third and Final Report and 20 Jazz Funk Greats), taking in the robo-fetish disco of 'Hot On The Heels of Love', the piss-streaked paranoia of 'Subhuman',… Read more
Live performance brought out Throbbing Gristle's talents for improvisation and provocation, and it's no coincidence that most of their classic albums contain sizeable extracts and edits of their shows; the live arena - be it grotty club, gallery space, concert hall or even the band's own rehearsal space - is where the action and the innovation really happened. The bulk of Heathen Earth documents one particular performance which took place in 1980 on "Saturday the 16th February between 8:10pm and 9.00pm"; the tracklist is filled out with two recor… Read more
The tragic death of Peter 'Sleazy' Christopherson earlier this year signalled the end of Throbbing Gristle, whose surviving members are currently working to complete their final album before retiring the name. It couldn't be a more appropriate time to revisit their revolutionary records of the 1970s and 1980s, remastered by Chris Carter and reissued on Industrial Records. Their first proper album, The Second Annual Report is essentially an edited collection of live and studio takes, and still sounds fresh and uncategorisable. 'Slug Bait' has lost no… Read more
Throbbing Gristle's second album, remastered - making for markedly superior sound quality to some previous editions - and reissued on Industrial Records. This finds the band at their sleazy (no pun intended) and savage best, reaching an apogee of apoplectic rage on 'We Hate You (Little Girls)', and has to rank as one of the most brilliant British evocations of decay and dysfunction to appear in any art form, ever. For all the P.Orridge-helmed murk, you feel Chris Carter's presence more firmly on this album - as on the the steam-… Read more
Sunday, 02 October 2011
Three years since triggering a avalanche of House music into the UK underground, the Night Slugs co-owner drops his debut album. The title, 'Neon Dreams' succinctly captures the spirit of the times; the yearning for a sense of retro-futurist sophistication, synthesized nocturnal fantasy space and sexed-up groove. It's aspirational music, coke and moet, not spliffs and red stripe, and hence a very "London" sound, iced to the eyeballs and cool to the bottom of the pocket. Modern House boogie, of the Electro, Funky and deep varieties are at its core, from the slinky triplets of 'Forever You' … Read more
'We Stay Together' is a brand new doublepack from Andy Stott, a companion piece of sorts to the radical inversions of the 'Passed Me By' EP released earlier this year. Its predecessor left many heads dazed upon impact - in the best possible sense - and these six tracks, produced in its wake, amp the pressure to throttling degrees. Entering the digital compression chamber of 'Submission' you become a willing participant, before the lights are cut and you're forced to adjust to the humid atmosphere and bruising, muscle-contracting darkroom throb of 'Posers'. Suitably initiated, the EP's… Read more
Heady LA HipHop vibrations from the Sun Ra acolyte, delivered on the Poobah label. In typical style, listening to this feels like you've just smoked some alien cess on a blazing hot day; you're now heavy under the influence of Ras G and his cosmic ways. It kicks off with a transmission for his late, inspirational brother 'Requiem 4 Mr. Yancey' before bringing the beats in slow but hectic style with the psyched oscillations of 'Hollywood/Where Dem Trees' and the zig-zagging 'One 4 Steve EL'. On a higher plane, 'Ancestral Echoes' cools your beans to more med… Read more
Impressive debut album from Blue Daisy, sidestepping post-dubstep, post-FlyLo trip-hop cliche and fashioning his own distinct sound, one that's surprisingly full of harsh textures and hard angles. There are some lovely moments on here; we're instantly drawn to 'Spinning Channels', featuring amorphous vocals from Anneka, which begins in synthetic drift-psychedelia mode before organising itself into a nicely nocturnal, dubbed, boogie-house groove. Heidi Vogel's vocals are also treated and cut up to the point of abstraction, a wail of humanity echoing through the cavernous reverb of 'Fall… Read more
Good to have you back Pole, where've you been lad? Germany's foremost practitioner of crackle-infused dub atmospherics seems keen to emphasize his music's reggae DNA here: the organ melody of 'Wipfel' sounds like the hook from a Jahtari digi killer put through the Berlin blender. 'Wurzel' is similarly bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, but with a fiercer skank on it, and a more minimal, focussed sound design. The highlight for many though will be Pole's own dub of 'Wipfel' - in which he hollows out the original, filling the space with extra sub-bass pressure and some rude echo FX. It's the sound of a master at work and demands to be heard LOUD.
The results of Damon Albarn's recent musical mission to the Congo in aid of Oxfam’s relief efforts in the DRC for which he was accompanied by the likes of Actress and Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs (hard not to picture 'em as some mismatched military platoon in a Hollywood war movie). But of all those involved in this attempt at culture-colliding pop music, it's the Congolese musicians who are the stars of the show, bringing the necessary grit and glee alike to each track. It's hard not to be won over by the looped, jazz-dunked hip-hop of 'K-Town' (featuring N'Gotshima), the impish… Read more
'Monkeytown' is Modeselektor's 3rd album, and finds the duo at the peak of their powers: in 2011 they're probably one of the world's most sought-after live electronic acts. But while that sort of fame can usually dilute creativity or credibility, Gernot Bronsert and Sebastian Szary are as vital and invigorating as they've ever been, if not more so, still siphoning the most vital ideas from underground UK and US dance scenes and reprogramming them with a knowing Berlin lean - and all on their own independent label. Their guests for this outing include Thom Yorke, Anti Pop Consortium, Otto… Read more
L-Vis heralds his 'Neon Dreams' LP with the sleek, modern boogie House of 'Lost In Love', backed with remixes by Bok Bok and Jam City aka Night Slugs Allstars. The original's got a very radio-friendly, mid-90's-meets-2011 House feel, while the club mix adds some well-tanned sax and fruitier bassline for that friday-night-at-MoS touch. For a ruder groove, peep Bok Bok and Jam City's Night Slugs Allstars Street Mix on a sweet-but-dirty House flex.
**Immense collection of exquisite Bollywood horror-funk themes reclaimed by the FK crew - hugely recommended!** After what seems like a thousand years of blood, sweat, tears, and a lot more blood, your zombified disc disciples at Finders Keepers unveil one of their most essential collections yet. This musical mausoleum of malformed freak funk and dreadful discothèque pop has been resurrected from the maligned cinematic subculture of Bombay's bloodthirsty horror film industry and witnesses the cognoscenti of the Bollywood pop scene at their most creative, destructive an… Read more
**Finders Keepers mark their 50th release with a return to the vaults of Serge Gainsbourg accomplice, Jean-Claude Vannier, whose imaginary soundtrack 'L'Enfant Assassin Des Mouches' was the label's first release back in 2005** "'Electro Rapide' is a collection of rare and unreleased archive material from the studio archives of legendary French orchestral pop composer Jean-Claude Vannier. Taken from the period before and during his revered creative relationship with Serge Gainsbourg (reaching their halcyon with 1971's 'Histoire De melody Nelson') these tracks reveal a rare glimp… Read more
AK Kids (the duo of Steven Hyslop and Akira Kiteshi) cook up four crooked collaborations. With 1000names for 'Pop Girl' he's on a squashed electro-boogie lean, and alongside Argyle Pimps on a scrunched and noisy Hip Hop tip. Best of all is 'Charles Bronson' with Slugabed, using samples from the eponymous film for a delirious, fractal face melter, before jamming a slow-roastin' Rave joint with Coco Bryce on 'Acid House'.
London's master of multifarious House moves drops his second 'Tenement Yard' volume. It's a heavyweight session, tipping the scales at 15 tracks of Bass driven, frisky-rhythmic Dance music with genes spliced from Broken Beat, Garage, Rare Groove, Tech-House and all that good stuff what meks you move on a weekend. From initial listens we're gauging a "deeper" sensibility to this collection, especially in the lushed out likes of 'Illuminate', 'Die 4 U', 'Wasteman Of Love' and the swooning chord sequence of 'Can't Trust Myself to Trust You', for starters. But, if you're after mor… Read more
Romping Kuduro Rave remix session from Caspa, Munchi, and Voxels, backed with Acapella. Caspa alternates the energy between halfstep grind and snare-rolling Technoid roll-out, also in condensed radio edit, whereas Rotterdam's Munchi factors in some clipped and stabby Bubblin' flavour and Voxels drops the pace for a radioactive House ride. Sweaty fun times.
A welcome return from one of Detroit's finest, now working with fellow Tokyo resident Takasi Nakajima. Following their recent inclusion on Marcl Fengler's Berghain 05 mix and ahead of a long-touted ART release, the duo play it deep and melodic but driving and tribal with 'Rapture', while Ian O'Brien cools the rhythms into a more sensuous, bass-driven remix.