Monday, 08 June
**The legendary leader of The Wallias Band fronts his first new 7" in decades!**"Exactly 30 years now went by since the last time any Hailu Mergia's original material was released. In the past few years the reissues of his old recordings brought him back to the scene allowing a wider audience to discover his great music. The combination of african roots and western influences gave his music a unique touch which is again the strenght and charm of the two new tracks released on this 7" for Philophon. A wave of elegant melodies will hit your ears while your body won't stop be driven i… Read more
Reissue of a rare and sought-after French synth wave side from 1981. It's times like this that I wish iI paid more attention to French at school: all the background on this 12" is, err, French to me. But we can tell you it contains four tracks of skinny Gallic wave pop, including the disco-readied drum machine punch and fleshy synths of 'Ersatz', the moody swagger of 'Demain Berlin' and the excellent, dub-bassed post-punk pop of 'Mauve', all housed in a delectable monotone jacket and printed inner (sleevenotes in French).
Almost hard to believe but this is Gavin Russom's 1st release for the like-minded house of L.I.E.S. We say that because he seems like such an obvious candidate for the imprint - he's from New York / makes psychedelic house on analog machines / loves a bit of grit under the nails. Anyway, he fits the label like a glove with three cuts here, opening the filters for a full on cosmic flight powered by chugging kicks in the epic A-side, 'Mantle Of Stars', while B-side brings a noirish Carpenter vibe with 'Brood Queen' and the slamming, arpeggiated drive of 'The Telstar File'.
Fort Romeau gets to grips with that icon of late '80s pop, the Fairlight synth, in five crystalline cuts of boogie house following his well received 'Insides' LP for Ghostly International.
Most unsettling record of the week award goes to Erik Bünger and Jan-Filip Tupa with 'The Empire Never Ended' for the excellent Infinite Greyscale series (cue baffled round of applause). Explanation is required: In 2006 researcher Thomas Knoefel found a mysterious, single-sided 78rpm record at the Society for Psychical Research archive in London. It was a reverse cut, meaning the record played from the centre label out, and contained no information other than the date 1948 and a phrase, "Dangerous! Do Not Play!", accompanying the recording of an unidentified male speaking in u… Read more
Cotrim contributes to the noisy dance music game with a fiery set of buckers for One Eyed Jacks. Five tracks of raw-as-f**k noise squeal ranging from totally blunted swells to slamming kuduro-noise jackers.
Further to the reissue extravaganza surrounding Bernard Fevre's seminal library disco, Obsession serve his super-rare, 'The Strange World of Bernard Fevre' (1977) to download for the first time. Expect a full on Moog fest in fourteen parts, with a wingspan from the revvin' disco chug of 'Hell Riders' to the percolated wiggle of 'Restless' and pulsing alien scapes of 'New from Future'.
40 year anniversary remastered reissue of a rare and sought-after library album of funky alien disco by Bernard Fevre, who's probably best known as Black Devil Disco Club. From the man himself: "Cosmos 2043 and Suspense were made one after the other in 1975. Writing and production took two months for the first album and four months for the other. I chose to do everything myself, because I didn’t trust the other producers and musicians; I thought they were way behind the times. Besides, I’ve always found that other people around me paid little attention to music, and seemed old, unfashiona… Read more
Vintage horror disco fromage curdled in 1977 by Bernard Fevre a.k.a. the legendary library composer behind Black Devil Disco Club. Lashings of wigged out Moog and funky alien grooves oozing and ponging like fresh baked Camembert.
Beau Wanzer raids his archive circa 2002-2008 and comes out dripping with wave filth. 'Untitled' is the Chicago artist's 1st album collection, following years of service with Civil Duty, Hypercube, Mutant Beat Dance, and Streetwalker. It's an urgent, cryptic dispatch from the brink of hardwave, minimal electronics and post punk, driven by arcane machines and infected with an oppressive, melancholic urban atmosphere. There are ten track on board, each framing Wanzer at his moodiest, most obtuse, from the recursive delays and snake-hipped shuffle of outstanding opener, 'Groove's No Z… Read more
Bio Rhythm pull one from the top shelf, reissuing A Thunder Orchestra's little known Belgian coldwave ace, 'Shall I Do It?', backed with two Mick Wills edits. The original was first found on the impossible to find 'Messe Noire' cassette, and last spotted on Walhalla Records' 'Underground Wave Volume 4' compilation. It's a standout example of Dirk De Saever's defintively darkside '80s emissions, mixing signature turgid swagger with gloomiest synths and vocal samples in the classiest, coke-numbed style. Mick Wills' reconstructions lend a bit more energy while keeping the OG vibes… Read more
Monday, 01 June
**Upfront Exclusive** Sawf London's Coyote Records pull another wicked debut from the pack with Spokes' 'Green Eyes' session. Working at the soft spot between OG grime and new age ambience, their three originals present lucent visions of our present future, crisply detailed with avian flute chatter and prickling electro drum palettes, at best in the Slackk-approved 'Lo Pan Strikes' and the shades-on at midnight ATL vibe of 'Mutations'. On a remix tip, E.M.M.A. proves a fine candidate to spin the light-headed dynamics of 'Ritalin', earthing its diaphanous bleeps and white noise washes with do… Read more
The nastiest cat in Paris rips the head off it with eight tracks of rabid noise tek for In Paradisum. Belligerent, brutal and bone-'ard, 'Sewing Machine' unleashes a barrage of f**ked drums and salty distortion between the banking squall of 'Loom' to the thunderous gabbercore assault of 'Fruit', taking out weak-hearts with the lumpy mash of 'Fubu Knight' and honking, atonal caterwaul of 'Pocket Pussy' up next to straighter battery in the more even keel of 'Zaltan's Jackets', the stressed venting of 'Body Control', and panic alarm of 'Sweatpants Chick'. Really good stuff this.
**The long awaited, sublime new album from Shuttle 358 finally surfaces. Ten years on from his gorgeous and much-loved 'Chessa', Dan Abrams mixes more melancholy, enchanted and even caustic elements into gauzily nostalgic scapes. A massive recommendation if you're into classic Eno & Budd, Wolfgang Voigt’s Gas, Kreng, Fennesz, BoC or Stephan Mathieu** "With the days of synthetic minimalism fading beyond the horizon in our rear view mirror, we pick up where Chessa (12k1030) left off. In his most bold and experiential work yet, Shuttle358 (Californian Dan Abrams) pulls you into… Read more
Jaw-dropping debut solo album from Nozinja, the brains behind South Africa's maddest export - Shangaan Electro. Arriving five years since he set floors alight from Limpopo to Salford with an acclaimed compilation for Honest Jon's, he presents the most diverse Shangaan expo to date with 'Nozinja Lodge' cycling between free-wheeling 180bpm signatures to highly idiosyncratic takes on militant Hi-NRG disco via string-heavy epics and pinging digi-dub pop mutations, all sprinkled with his patented, super-bright and melodic arrangements. For energy and soul he's practically unrivalled on the worl… Read more
Jamie xx practises safe raving with his debut solo album proper, following a 2011 collaboration with Gil Scott-Heron and production as part of The xx. 'In Colour' posits Jamie as the pre-eminent posh soul boy, lifting and massaging inspiration from the rich heritage of late '80s + early '90s London dance culture and channelling it into a pop-ready format palatable to Radio 1 daytime tastes and festival soundtracks. The putative "soul" of rare groove, boogie, hardcore and early jungle is sucked out and spliced with vocals in feathered arrangements ripened up for students and yummy mummys… Read more
**Edition of 300** 'Sirens' is an utterly captivating side of alien ambient composition by Kara-Lis Coverdale (collaborator with Tim Hecker) and LXV (a.k.a. David Sutton) for Mexico City's quietly ace Umor Rex label. Committed over 14 months between 2013 and early 2015 at studios in Jersey City, Philadelphia and Montréal, it blooms eight strange and often incredible flowers shaping the voice and various electronic inputs into vaulted, complex harmolodics and rhythmelodic cadence with an effortless, sweeping quality that's really got our tongue right now. It's much more gentle than,… Read more
Keysound link up LHF and UK dance legends, The Ragga Twins, on a ruffer set of 'nuum mutations. Amen Ra, Double Helix, Low Density Matter and No Fixed Abode divide duties accordingly, coming with four tracks ranging from darkside megadome wreckage with the dread 2-step junglism, 'Fugese', beside the radar-skimming roller, 'Exodus', whilst '2000 Dust' runs at a ruder, Ghost-style garage tilt, and 'Street Wise' dips with jazzy midnight halfstep flex.
Ital wears his darkside '90s techno hardhat for Gang of Ducks in 'Toxic Work Environment'. Striking like some Adam X tunnel techno joint with the cold and gloomy kicks and drones of 'Syndrome', the session deals in superb X-Files techno themes with the brooding chord and creepin' swing of the title track, for 'Canker Store' to run a ruddier, bass-driven style under the same, inclement conditions, and 'The Citadel' presents a moment of tranquil sci-fi reflection like something from the Ghost In The Shell soundtrack. As ever, G.O.D. are on hand with a beat0-driven rework of the latter … Read more
All City finally sling a new album from Onra! Trailing the 2nd volume of his acclaimed 'Chinoiseries' by some four years, 'Fundamentals' gets back to what he does best; cracking the sun out of classic boogie, R&B and soul tropes inna lean, criss-cut '80s-meets-'10s style. There are 13 tracks featuring a plethora of new MCs and soul voices, all playing out like the perfect soundtrack to sunset on the balcony or glyding deckside with fruity cocktails and your boo. You know the vibes, and so does Onra.
Primal Black Metal power from multifarious Montréal survivor Pierre-Marc Tremblay a.k.a. Akitsa (also Âmes Sanglantes, Contrepoison, Outre-Tombe). Longtime supporters, Hospital Productions, present his fifth album; a nine-song force of nature fusing elements of industrial noise and leaden synth atmospheres with punkish outbursts and possessed lyrics incanted in his native Québécois French. It's emotional, spanning a spectrum of feelings from ecstasy to misanthropy, galvanising piloerect effect with the towering silhouette of 'Dévoilé' alongside the razing, blank-eyed swagger of 'Le feu de l… Read more
Best Available Technology reveals another batch of blunted deconstructions with 'Excavated Tapes 1992 - 1999 (Vol.2)' via Astro:Dynamics. Following on from BNJMN's more recent deconstructions and outings for Left Blank and Styles Upon Styles, it sounds out ten cryptically crushed and frayed off-beats and ambient enigmas operating in their very own time-and-place quite unlike most else out there. They range from unstable equations such as the ghostly, fragmented 'Sncs9' thru to recursive lower case shoegaze styles in its longest piece, the five minute 'Si… Read more
Black Acre bruk loose with Tsunga's solo debut volley of 'ardcore/B-more rufige. 'Maris Piper' bangs out choppy jungle swerve streaked with darkside pads and brooding breakdowns inna classic fashion, whereas 'B More Dog' feels more upfront, closer to say Mumdance's brittle but lushly expansive sound designs mixed with a cheeky old skool rudeboy attitude.
Techno veterans James Ruskin and Mark Broom hearken back to their B-Boy and electronica roots with 'Refuge of a Twisted Soul' for Skam. Their follow-up to 'Light Box' (2011) binds those roots tighter than ever, communing the sound of dying machine voices with the distant muscle memory of limbs on lino. They're cranky, creaky neck-snappers synching rusty snares and bombed-out bass with electronic gremlins that sound like the sentinel bots from the Matrix; a skunked-out throwback to the twilight strains of Skam's golden days.
Brain-flossing modular workouts by the American-based Iranian artist last spotted on Morphine Records with the excellent 'Architectonic'. For Record Label Records, the self-explanatory 'Arrhythmia' deals in playful complex polymetrics coming off like an ecstatic, febrile Florian Hecker or Autechre production, all lacerating plongs and pointillist pulses with an unhinged logic primed to scatter bodies and heads.
**Includes ace 12"x12" art insert by Martin Skauen** Wiggly disco bits from the brilliantly titled Sex Judas and Ricky on Optimo's main label. A-side, the greazy bass licks, shuffled drums and tobacconised vocals of 'Det syke vesen som kjeder seg i bunnen av mennesket' come off like Arthur Russell meets Laid Back at some cosy Chicago disco dive circa 1983; B-side they keep the vibe drugged and horny with 'Pope Naked The First' beside Rob & Nicky's Acid Rub pecked with barking dogs and chummed up with a writhing 303 bass.
**Far Eastern-tinged cyber-pop from the NYC underground** "SETH is the project of NYC's James K that she started with Gobby in 2012. SETH is whimsical. SETH is half-self-conscious, twice as demonic. It works in another dimension, throwing a few shaky rope bridges when absolutely unnecessary. It's using time for all that it’s worth, not quite leaving any space to breathe. For their second album, released on cassette, this time via 1080p, SETH searches for a way out of a pretty nasty place it found itself in. Using the elements of darkness and light, SETH seeks a new shelter - lush and v… Read more