Monday, 05 January
Radioslave pays dues to early breakbeat house with two swerving grooves for Running Back. 'Children of the E' harks back to that fertile early '90s epoch when hip hop collided with house and Belgian rave in London warehouses to make some of the deadliest dance music known to man. The 'South London Mix' is more rolling, rude, with sped up hip hop break and the drone of distant whistle posses accentuated by strafing rave riffs and anchored by weighty subs. The 'North London Mix' is more dramatic, spaced out, stepping off a dipping breakbeat into colder, darkside vibes.
Blackest Ever Black part the curtains to reveal Tarcar's compelling debut of "shut-in dub dysfunction" at the closing strokes of 2014. Sealing the label's most prolific year to date on a particularly evocative note, 'Mince Glace' dwells in the nether regions of the echoplex, dreaming of creaky psych dub from AC Marias to Leven Signs and peddling sozzled, spectral organs for reclined minds. Vascilating between bombed-out and spiked-up vibes, it's a superb showcase for Carla dal Forno and Tarquin Manek's wayward tastes, proving equally effective in the amorphous mystery of shorter bits like the… Read more
Dro Carey and his Tuff Sherm alter ego divide their energies over three twisted productions backed with a boomin' DJ Vague remix. In Tuff Sherm mode he's in the mood to bang with the slompy jack of 'Scope' and a darkly playful EBM jakbeat titled 'Prime Engine'. Switching to Dro Carey mode, he works with shivering hi-hats and a moire of Fairlight-like bass pulses of 'Prime Engine' ina mutant grime fashion, which DJ Vague promptly turns into a space-headed take on B-More house. Tipped!!
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
**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.
Cologne's Reinhard Voigt stretches his legs on a pair of strident Kompakt house standards. 'Rachanee' revolves sweet samples of unknown Far Eastern origin over a squashed electro bassline and old skool bleep techno style hook. 'Tisch Für Zwei' is darker, burrowing into the dance with hypnotic monotone bass, pinging brass stabs and kinkiest interplay of cowbells and rimshots to rub the 'floor to a lather.
One of 1080p's earliest discoveries, Young Braised, returns to the prolific Canadian label with a very worthy follow-up to 'Japanese Tendencies' (1080P05). Comprising producers Karmelloz and a i r s p o r t s, Young Braised realise a properly oneiric, vaporous sound with 'Northern Reflections', mixing cloud rap memes with drowsy new age tones in nine parts, at best in the Basic Channel-screwing 'Entertainment' and the perfectly blunted snap of 'Daydrift'. RIYL Jack Dice, Main Attrakionz, Spaceghostpurp.
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.
Austria's Trust label survey their 15th anniversary celebrations. Includes the dry robo swagger of Dez Williams, 'All That Remains', plus discordant Detroit electro from Stingray313, and sharply contoured darkside electro from Microthol, plus a gorgeous ambient vignette by Biepang.
Fully loaded with instrumentals from Preditah, Faze Miyake, Jammer, Rude Kid, Skepta, Swifta Beater, Beast, and more as used in the most recent LOTM Battle Arena.
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
Austrian avantgarde-electronics trio Radian team up with Giant Sand’s Desert Country Songwriter Howe Gelb. A special collaboration of Americana with jazz and electronics. The band founded their own label 2014 in order to release unique Radian projects special limited editions."
Pure dread pressure from Quest for keepers of the dubstep torch, Innamind Recordings. Two sides of the dubstep coin: 'Vampires' brings the evil minimalist sound with super-wide subs and scattered halfstep lean hingeing on wooden crack; 'Overcome' jumps up for the rave with nasty synth stabs and jugglin' drums for a proper old skool 'ardcore-style twiss-up.
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.
**Warm, woozy slo-house abstraction. RIYL Madeto, Hashman Deejay, Lnrdcroy** "Vancouver studio heads Neu Balance breathe deep on Pacific Northwestern air and exhale a debut of meticulously dazed hybrid house and ambient electronica, synthetic and playful with a twisted holisticism. “Rubber Sole” drifts in and out of a borealic yet lush minimalism and over to a jumped-up maximalism that is also present in their live shows. It also blurs from a sort of pre-apocalyptic and overtly filtered, processed and generally heavy synth layers and partially dismantled beats into a bright naturalism/pa… Read more
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.
Lawrence English returns with two sides of wavering drone coaxed from Elka 30 organ. 'Lonely Women's Club' was recorded over the month of July in 2011 whilst nursing his newly arrived daughter between the hours of 11pm and 4am. It's a subtly hypnotic and visual piece, all hovering, shimmering tonal hues just out of focus and gradually, imperceptibly ascending to dreamy overtones. It's a perfect addition to the Important catalogue, and warmly recommended to anyone who has fallen in love with their Eliane Radigue issues.
"Krystal Klear joins forces with a fresh off the boat vocalist in the form of Flex Washington. A two track 12 alongside a crafty Accapella for the Djs showcases a another step in a darker club foundation for the label head merging elements of new jacking R n B on top of rigorous drum patterns all tied together by the romanticism in Flex's vocal tone. The tracklisting of the release was inspired by classic vocal 12's of the late 80's early 90s which is represented by the alternative acid flexing drum-a-pella version of the A side alongside a 12 inch only bonus of the bare accapella giving a tip of the hat to KK's musical heritage ranging from turntablism to body rocking."
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'.
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