Monday, 18 November
"Since late 1995 Staalplaat has issued limited edition releases by Muslimgauze. Until now 9 of those releases were available, and they are all sold out. To explain once more: the limited editions are for die-hard fans, giving the possibility to collect a lot of Mr. Muslimgauze's music (and imagine: there is still much you didn't hear). Beyond The Blue Mosque is the first in a series of those compilations. Compiled by Berrie Kamer (VPRO's Mort Aux Vaches man) with the best tracks taken from Izlamaphobia, Azzazin, Return Of Black September, Deceiver and the Zealot 10". The music … Read more
"Fundamentally in the traditional ethno-percussive camp of the Muslimgauze oeuvre, the core style of Beirut Transister is raqs sharqi/baladi (traditional belly dancing) and is at home with titles like Observe with Sadiq Bey and especially Jebel Tariq. Though tracks can be recognized from parts of the latter, these are alternate versions and where Jebel is a continuous set, each track on Beirut stands alone. This album delves into raqs sharqi/baladi as tempo and density of rhythm shifts from simpler patterns to vigorous cascades of lush, layered tabla that varies from song to song to… Read more
"If ‘Satyajit Eye’ only blinks at Indian culture, the album ‘Al Jar Zia Audio’ stares at it with both eyes wide open. It is known that Jones looked further than the Palestinian conflict, and also borrowed extensively from the rhythms of India, Pakistan, and other Eastern cultures. Like crossing borders in the bigger Islamic region, Jones takes whatever comes to hand, and moulds it into his own trademark sound – often imitated, never surpassed. The tribal bang of the drums, the sampled voices of the radio, combined with a strong sense of melody, makes the music of Muslimgauze stand ou… Read more
The legacy of Muslimgauze is handled with reverent care and attention by Anders Peterson on four deeply atmospheric reworks for Staalplaat. Also known as Relapxych.0, Peterson was undertaking a large-scale project transferring and remastering the stockpile of unreleased Muslimgauze gear when he was tasked to apply his sought-after studio skills (favoured by V.O.D and Staalplaat) to these four archival pieces. In effect, Anders amplifies and enhances the more atmospheric elements with lush, widescreen strokes rendering the subtlest sounds to the peripheries while galvanizing th… Read more
Misty Conditions presents two Planet Mu renegades as you've rarely heard them. It's the new vehicle for Henry Collins aka Shitmat and Richard Wilson aka Burnkane to explore their less puerile side, and the results aren't bad. With Henry now based in France and Richard in LA, the project took shape over email, manifesting nine tracks of raw-to-the-bone machine drum sparks and layered samples processed with bespoke software. There's nary a daft jungle appropriation in sight; instead the pair take inspiration from Footwork's rudimentary sample techniques, roughneck electro-techno, industrial… Read more
Steve Moore (Zombi) and Daniel O'Sullivan (Ulver, Guapo) achieve heady synth-prog heights with their debut Miracle album. It's the strongest indictment yet of their twin passions for epic dance music and tortuous, noirish pop arrangement, coming off like Depeche Mode or John Foxx soundtracking a giallo set in a zombie-infested discotheque. O'Sullivan's vocals are stellar, a dramatic multi-track constellation of voices set against gorgeous, hyperreal instrumentals synthesising Italo disco, '80s FM electro and widescreen cinematic atmospheres in nine parts. At the top 'Good Love' strikes deep with … Read more
'Telepathics Meh In-Sect Connection' features enigmatic Japanese sound artist Kouhei Matsunaga in collaboration with Autechre's Sean Booth and Mika Vainio. It's the second in a series of four releases featuring Kouhei both in collaboration and solo mode on Important, and quite undoubtedly the most challenging of the lot. Besides his more recent work as NHK with Toshio Munehiro on Raster Noton Kouhei is a known for his interactions with an extensive number of like-minded musicians and artists including Sensational, Asmus Tietchens and Co… Read more
Slip Discs' sixth release introduces 20 year-old Manc MFAAH, with an intriguing suite of computer music - one of their best releases to date. 'Everything Better Under White Light' renders an abstract six track ecology of abrasive textures and isolated frequencies which the label deftly describe as "the computer's natural noises take on the quality of field recording rather than dense tapestries being constructed from found sound." The artist skilfully segues and traverses dimensions between brain-prodding, Ikeda-like glitch and pressurised subbass frequencies, juxtaposin… Read more
**Mind-bending wild-dream hookup between Richard Youngs, Heatsick and Luke Fowler. Ace!** "Lurists are the collaborative effort of Glaswegians Luke Fowler (who's also releasing his debut LP on Dekorder next month) and Richard Youngs with Berlin ex-pat Steven Warwick aka Heatsick (PAN Records). Warwick and Fowler had been friendly since playing several bills together with their old groups Birds Of Delay and Lied Music. Richard Youngs and Luke Fowler have a collaborative duo that has been active for over a year now. This collaboration spans a diverse range of territory from austere elec… Read more
**Engrossing, alien modular synth deviations from Derek Jarman Award-winner and collaborator with Heatsick, Richard Youngs, Alex Neilsen. Recommended!** "Fowl Tapes II is the debut solo album by Luke Fowler, a Glaswegian musician, artist and filmmaker. Fowler played in the groups Lied Music and Rude Pravo and curates the Shadazz label. He has collaborated with Jean-Luc Guionnet, Eric La Casa, Richard Youngs, Lee Patterson and Tohsiya Tsunoda. His documentary films have explored "counter cultural" figures like Scottish psychiatrist R. D. Laing, English composer Cornelius Cardew and Xento… Read more
Slip Discs' RNCM graduates present two works on one disc. The first, 'Virtual Airport' (2010) features the words of Matthew Welton set to the operatic vocals of Seaming To & Sofia Jernberg, with music by Larry Goves (electronics), Oliver Coates (cello), and Sarah Nicolls (piano). The second, 'SHUCK! & Black Valley', a "play for quiet voices" features words by Sam Quill set to stark, nocturnal electronics by Laurence Tompkins and sounds something like something like an experimental piece for Radio 4.
Instra:mental's Kid Drama aka Jon Convex returns to that Autonomic D&B sound on four tunes for dBridge's Exit, including a killer hook-up with Om Unit. A-side, his solo flight remind us just how good Instra:mental were, especially in the midnight Vangelis synth panorama and jittery step of 'In Mind' and the Timba-tech R&B/D&B R&D of 'What Do You See'. B-side the shadowy Hands Liek Crime appears on the skulking stepper, 'Retract', and 'Grind' features Om Unit teaming up on a tense, slick slow/fast essential.
Kaiju stalk dread dubstep ground on their fourth single for the Kryptic Minds label in the last year. 'M16' is classic Osiris gear, all snarling mid-range, scooping subs and tetchy halfstep swagger; 'Clang' holds off of a slower, tighter darkside lean sweetened with ghostly female vocal.
James T Cotton loads up two kinky old skool-style house bombs for Ghostly, backed with a darker DJ Qu remix. 'Valley Road (We Are 1)' harks back to that fertile, influential early '90s era when labels like Nu Groove and KMS were meshing techno, house and breakbeats with a sense of utopian dancefloor abandon. 'Alpha Helix' is craftier, nodding to the hi-tech funk blueprints of Manchester and Detroit's Derrick May and A Guy Called Gerald with intricate synth and drum programming. DJ Qu brings the single up to date with a darker, streamlined techno take on 'Valley Road (We Are 1)'.
Crushing halfstep from the Rinse FM stalwart. 'Magneto (Feel It)' leans in with that minimal sound also favoured by Youngsta, Kryptic Minds and SP:MC; 'TVR' is more nimble, slower, reminding of Mensah and Loefah's old skool NYC aesthetics on Lobster Boy and Swamp81 with heavy-rolling electro and bass house swing.
Following the politicized culinary excursions of 'Plat Du Jour' and his acclaimed collaboration with Roisin Murphy, the boy Herbert is back with a brand-new LP that eschews the more outlandish Coke-crushing antics, in favour of a comparatively straight-up (though no less stimulating) blast of funk blasted perfection. Opening through the jaunty cast of 'Something Isn't Right', Herbert immediately asserts his intention to appeal on a broader level - with gorgeous strings, fantastic vocals (courtesy of Dani Siciliano, Neil Thomas and Dave Okumu) and an utterly insistent rhythm bursting f… Read more
**Orange wax** Ghost Mutt melds B-More, Trap, Footwork and zig-zagging electronic hyperfunk on the 'Rumble Pak' EP. 'Rumble Pak' slams down tightly wound American club Breaks with ecstatic hardcore yelps and airborne strings; 'Queens Road Masonic Lodge' is a strange development of Trap-style 16th note snare rolls and Giallo-esque string arpeggios amped for 2013. Flipside, '3310' gives a strong nod to the LuckyMe and Rustie/Hud Mo sounds with flashest stabs and wild, cut-up riddim, whereas 'Dintuno?' tilts hi-pitch vocals and rapid-fire footwork drums for the gangsta rollers.