Monday, 22 November 2010
Rudeboy 4/4 Garage and House riddims from Mark Krupp for L2S. 'Light Anthem' borrows a few tricks from Armand van Helden's late '90s handbook, while 'Badman In Chicago' pushes a funkier, boomptier 4/4 sound with warping bass and Dancehall samples. Tuff.
Architeq and Tirk have one final fling for 2010, peppered with revisions from Dan Lissvik and Mr Beatnik. The former flips 'Odyssey' into a beach-ready slap-bass strutter, while the latter reworks the title track into a stoned electrodub shuffle. Architeq's original stitches up fonky rhodes and dubbed out melodica in his frayed and freaky slowdisco style while 'Halloween Acid' sounds like Luke Vibert on valium. Recommended.
Mountain Of One's Leo Zero is invited to select and blend a diverse and pop-friendly mix set by Strut Records. expect choice cuts from Chris & Cosey 'Exotica', Can 'Halleluwah', Brain Eno & John Cale 'Spinning Away' next to Balearic classics like The Countach's 'My Oasis' in the midst of Afrobeat classics, discoid art punk and skanking reggae.
Dutty stinkin' Grime styles from Mr V aka Virgo! More recently the Notts badman has been concerned with Bassline matters, but the 'Cinema EP' sees him roll out a swaggering Grime sound, from the mad moody bleeps and bilious bass stabs of 'Cinema' to the warped skank of 'Boy Better Know' and a crushing, triplet filled edit of the Home Alone theme tune! Seriously, no one can touch NHNH when they're packing this much heat!
'Ariel' is the first single from Stateless' forthcoming album 'Matilda', blazing a new direction into electronic sounds, backed up with a Rustie remix. The original fits Chris James' distinctive songwrititng with Blues-y west-African guitar, overweight kick/snare and purple dubstep tropes, sounding not a million miles from the Joker remix of The Heavy. Rustie's remix takes the track on a progged-out astro-safari replete with Battles style vocal treatments and fancy synth plumage.
Hailing from Columbia, Missouri, Heater are a three-piece DIY indie outfit comprising former member of Cave and Sneakers - Zach McLuckie (guitars and vocals), plus Jeremy Freeze of Jerusalem and Starbaskets (guitar), and Jon Wujick of California Raisins. Their debut release together 'God and Hair' is a melodic, lo-fi pop album with elements of '90s indie-punk a la Sebadoh, Sonic Youth or The Clean with a very concise are satisfyingly raw and viscerally noisy sound, enhanced in no small part by the analogue recording from Cave's Cooper Crain. Like the Black Math LP, also out this week from Chicago's Permanent Records, it's limited to 500 copies, never to be repressed.
Monday, 15 November 2010
Eight releases down, Numbers drop the anthemic 'Goldtooth Grin' from Glasgow's dubstep rotter, Taz Buckfaster. The lead cut has been in circulation for over 12 months with those in the know, charted highly by Gernot Modeselektor as far back as 2009 and featuring regularly in the sets of Jackmaster and his numerous numbers affiliates. Basically if you're into the most melodic, melancholy and crunked-out end of Joker, Starkey or Girl Unit this is an absolute baller. 'Robogrime' follows on a ramped-up instrumental electro-Grime tip for the DJs, while 'Strike First' licks out a warped bass sounding like Azzido Da Bass's 'Dooms Night' inna 'ardcore ruffige style. Tipped!
Punch Drunk celebrate their 20th release in typically idiosyncratic style with a Radiophonic dub-scaping session from the shadowy Ekoplekz. Not much is known about this guy, apart from the fact that he's from Bristol and has an exceptional taste for gorgeously spooked analogue electronics. These two tracks deploy vintage hardware and lo-fi cassette players in an improvised manner to make charmingly trippy little riddims, perhaps like Daphne Oram, Richard H. Kirk and Chris Carter got locked in the studio with a sack of stinky green. 'Stalag Zero' is the more bloopy of the the tw… Read more
SBTRKT, Salem, Main Attrakionz and Ghost Hunter are drafted in to remix tracks from These New Puritans. The eleven tracks of 'Hidden' are practically kick-starting a new decade of art-rock/pop experimentation and the appointed remixers are qually part of that brave new world. From a brief tribal introduction SBTRKT propels us into a version of the purposeful 'We Want War', with vocals sounding uncannily like Massive Attack's 3D over agitated Electro-House blares and scissoring UK dance syncopations. Next, the American underground is exposed with two rather immense r… Read more
Heavyweight platter from The Bug, dropping two brand new cuts with vox from Hitomi and Roots Manuva, plus remixes of his classics 'Skeng' and 'Poison Dart' from Autechre and DVA, respectively. To be fair, the opener 'Catch A Fire' could easily have appeared under his King Midas Sound or Black Chow aliases, largely due to the balance of Hitomi's honeyed vocals with the bottom end tug and crushing snares. Quite surprisingly, 'Tune In' is the first time The Bug and Roots Manuva have colluded on a track, finding a scorched common ground between their rooted disciplines with Roots coming off like … Read more
Lords of the American electronic underground, Lazer Sword aka Lando Kal and Low Limit, drop a heavyweight debut album. Over the last two years their presence on the influential Beat Dimensions series and individual solo records for Numbers and the excellent Innovative Leisure label have cemented their reputation as ones to watch. That all pays off with their full-length premiere, 15 tracks of dynamic hiphop and electro featuring MC guest turns from Turf Talk, M. Sayyid, Zackey Funk Force and Myka 9. As it goes with electronic HipHop, there's always a production duo whose … Read more
Arriving around the same time as his greatly anticipated return as The Sight Below, this new LP from Rafael Anton Irisarri shows a different side to this talented composer/producer. 'Lit A Dawn'is a typically dense and immersive composition that integrates pensive, tentatively paced piano figures with arcs of vaporous background ambience. The compressed and muffled quality of the recording only heightens the impact of the music itself: as slow and purposeful as it may be, it somehow also feels as if its on the verge of rupturing or breaking at the seams. After this lyrical opening… Read more
*Long-awaited new album from this amazing project, sounding somewhere between Ben Frost, Tim Hecker, Philip Jeck and Fennesz* The Fun Years are responsible for one of our favourite records of the last few years, the magical 'Baby, It's Cold Inside'. This is the much anticipated follow-up, delivering their first new material since an inclusion on Kompakt's Pop Ambient series. Arguably, it's their finest work, evolving the grainy loops and organically constructed drones into a living, breathing mass of intangible yet deeply affecting emotions set somewhere between the majestic blur of… Read more
Arresting new single from the hotly touted Spokes. Since the release of their 'People Like People Like You' debut, this Manchester-based five-piece have attracted the keenest attentions of the post-rock/indie cognoscenti, resulting in a firm handshake with Ninja Tune's bespoke Indie imprint, Counter. After gestating their sound for the last 18 months they emerge with a boldly accomplished and near-symphonic sound, at once unnervingly positive yet with a fragile seam of melodic sensitivity, no doubt accounting for a great deal of their popularity. With the rousing, anthemic voc… Read more
Tidy disco package from the diverse Meakusma camp, featuring remixes of Sic! from Errorsmith, LowLow and Quarion. It's been far too long since we've heard new material from Errorsmith, aka half of MMM, and his mix of 'Orange Sky' is worth the wait. At first glance it may seem like a very straight playing piece of disco punk, but the super punchy production disguises some wickedly skewiff elements like bass riffs which seem to veer just off groove or those pitch tilted synthlines subtly nudged to brilliant effect. On the flip MoM and Mathematics contributor LowLow gives an excellent Italo-pop version and Swiss House producer, Quarion, rolls on a deeper House vibe.
Continuing their unwaveringly impressive reissues run, Light In The Attic present a brand new edition of this ultra-obscure 1969 private press album from psychedelic maestro Jim Sullivan. Adding to the mystique surrounding this lost gem, Sullivan himself disappeared without trace n 1975, with only an abandoned Volkswagen Beetle and emptied out motel room to offer leads as to his still unknown whereabouts. Sullivan's biography seems to paint him as a nearly-man, hanging out with stars on the West Coast and even snagging himself a cameo in Easy Rider along the way. This record came about when a… Read more
Line's latest release comes from Chicago's Scott Cortez. With hints of Fennesz and learned guidance from the sounds of Eno and Robin Guthrie et al, Scott works with treated guitars to create velveteen drones and blissed ambient spaces, often teetering on the brink of drifting into more secluded, and shadowy spaces but always remaining within view of the light. The effect of these nine tracks is a little like sitting at the window of a log cain on a remote hillside, watching a wintry sky outside almost imperceptibly cycle through a spectrum of tones, and of course conjuring Gas-like… Read more
What's this, then?! Becoming Real follow smart drops for Ramp and Lo Fi Funk with an 8-bit Grime killer featuring Trim and backed with remix from DJ Rashad! The lead cut 'Like Me' owes as much to Wiley as it does Zomby, arranging optimized bleeps inna cold Eski mix style assisted by typically brilliant bars from Trim. 'Showdown In Chinatown' follows on a more abstract sino-grime tip with trickling melody and bristling, brittle electro rhythms, and again authenticated by Trim. On remix duties Rashad ups the ante with a pounding 160bpm Juke version, next to an instrumental of 'Showdown In … Read more
Quite surprisingly, Clubroot's tracks have remained untouched by external forces, until now. SPL, Bryan Zentz and Kuma chip in with powerful, 'floor-ready services. SPL's mix of 'Semptiternal' is easily the ruffest and tuffest of the lot, crashing in with artillery strike snares and amped-up hardcore bass with dramatic results. Brian Zentz is well known for his tough techno output, but makes a strafe into atmospheric halfstep with this 'Dulcet' version, keeping the drums and melody suspended in dread airspace while the bass brings the menace from below. Taking a different look at the same … Read more
This has to rank as one of the most hotly anticipated albums in Brian Eno's recent career - no doubt in part because it's his first release for Warp, and therefore marks the union of two of electronic music's most revered institutions. Small Craft On A Milk Sea (the first new Eno album since 2005's often song-based collection Another Day On Earth) takes the form of fourteen improvised pieces conceived to be "the mirror-image of silent movies - sound-only movies". Made in collaboration with long-term associates Jon Hopkins (previously to be found making records on Domino/Doub… Read more
A radically different approach delivers an album of signature Stereolab stylings embellished by an improvised recording process. All 13 tracks were laid down at Instant Zero, their studio in Bordeuax, in the same session as their 2008 album 'Chemical Chords'. 'Not Music' differs from its predecessor by way of Tim Gane's more experimental approach, messing around with a "series of about seventy tiny drum loops" before adding improvised chord progressions played on piano and vibraphone. "Building them up from there - later slowing the tracks down or speeding them up- was a totally new way of do… Read more
From the community at Glasgow's Green Door Studios, Optimo's JD Twitch has assembled this thoroughly endearing comp of classic punk, funk and rock cover versions. As part of a series of musical workshops at the studio, local kids on the Youth Music Summer School course worked with a bunch of older, more experienced musicians from groups such as Mothers & The Attics and Michael Dracula, and got involved with mixing, engineering and producing this release. You may have already heard the incredibly infectious version of ESG's 'Moody' by two 10 year old twins from Ghana, but you've … Read more
Markus Fischer joins the illustrious ranks who've appeared on Taylor Deupree's excellent 12k label, presenting a supremely delicate solo debut. He cites his movements up and down the West coast of America during the last two decades as a major influence on his sound, infusing frayed, fractured and quietly restrained compositions with field recordings and allowing lo-fi noise textures to creep and grow around both the artificial and natural sounds like tiny little organisms which slowly catalyse the whole thing into life. Fischer uses an array of battered, salvaged pianos, a xylophone m… Read more
Revered modern clasiscal pianist and Moritz Von Oswald collaborator, Francesco Tristano, delivers an excellent new album for Infiné. 'idiosynkrasia' melds electronics and modern composition with effortless grace, spilling into nine tracks of unique forms with a cunning feel for rhythm and hypnotic melody. 'Mambo' combines all those elements for an initial display of prowess, before slipping into the sumptuous solo piano arrangement of 'Nach wasser Noch Erde'. The album's most distinctive dancefloor moment is the excellent title track, a robust House rhythm entwined with rhodes an… Read more
Another mega-anthem for an alternate reality from Sam Meringue aka Outer Limits Recordings. The devotional drone-pop smasher 'Julie' features golden lines like "Juleeeee/ You Don't Have To Kill To Be Happeeee" and "Juleeeee/Smell The Fear Upon Me When You're Scareeee" set to the most fugged-up swarms of tape noise and epically muffled drums with sticky synth secretions spurted all over the top. 'Plastik Child' comes from the same zone of brilliance as Autre Ne Veut, only amplified to the power of Nena and therefore disgustingly addictive. Highly recommended if you got the Greatest H… Read more
Sam Meringue aka Matrix Metals aka Explorers aka Flashback Repository aka Wingdings, inhabits his Outer Limits Recordings guise again following a mental LP for Not Not Fun. His head is in some late night cable channel zone for this one, paying tribute to the zonk box on 'I Need My TV' via the medium of hypnagogic soft rock romance, and sounding like a less sly Ariel Pink in the process. Of course there's loads of gunky FX, but overall the effect is unnervingly lucid. On 'Burnin' Through The Night' we're introduced to some alcoholic TV presenter type before a crimpin' bit of … Read more
Groove Chronicles rope in an all-star cast of remixers to rework El-B from Garage, Funky and Bassline, past, present and future. Pick of the bunch are DJ Q's skipping old-skool vibes, Dobie's dread-fuelled 'Dalston Skinny Leg Crackhead' remix, or the effervescent bump 'n flex of Photomachine's cosmic dub, but it's a damn fine set all round for juicy vocal House of the Funky/Garage variety.
Chart smashing stuff from the Olde English Spelling Bee camp, dropping the debut from Brooklyn's hugely tipped Greatest Hits. Aside from having one of the best names ever, this band also make some of the most f**ked up pop music we've heard all year. Think Autre Ne Veut doing a guest spot on The Hitman And Her presented by Pete Waterman and James V/VM in a Michaela Strachan mask, and you're almost there. The PWL-production line groove of 'Danse Pop' is our favourite, while 'Make You Mine' strikes a baggier rut of Balearic sunshine, pished-up on warm vodka and starved of oxygen from smokin… Read more
One of the highlights from their s/t debut album, 'Commotion' appears backed with remixes from disco dons Tiger & Woods and Capracara. The title cut comes deeply infused with the spirit of early '80s 4AD releases and embellished with a subtle Italo/PunkFunk propulsion ripe for the more discerning Indie discos. But, those in need of a more groovesome fix should check the Linn-esque snares on Tiger & Woods '80s weekender-ready remix or definitely head to Capracara's sultry late-night strutter, tweaked with the right measure of cold electro synths and spaciously dubby atmospherics.
KidKANEVIL evidently likes to hear his top sh*t remixed, hence this killer collection of reworks tackling his 'Basho Basho' album from Daisuke Tanabe, Cherry Chan + Kiat, Daedelus, TOKiMONSTA, Bug, Throwing Snow, Om Unit, Blue Daisy, Eliphino, and Illum Sphere. OK, well some of these already appeared on digital formats so we'll breeze about the ones that didn't... Daisuke Tanabe's mix of 'Lantern 1' has some excellent, almost electro-acoustic features and a sweetly fragile sense of space, and Cherry Chan's mix of 'Lantern 2' is equally deft a… Read more