Monday, 02 March
Phonica start their 2015 schedule with a haul of deep and percussive house tracks by the Italo/Hispanic unit, S. Moreira and Xinner. Slow Life's Berlin-based percussionist, S. Moreira lends a loosely fluid patter to Xinner's lushly spacious electronic in the free-floating velocity of 'Through The Rings of Saturn' and the night-drive momentum of 'Communication Breakdown', before going dolo with the psychy broken beat cleft of 'Orbiting Around' and a woozy whorl of a 'Spacedub' for 'Communication Breakdown'.
"Debut album 'Wild Peace' was released in June 2012, after the then five piece had surfaced 18 months prior to a flurry of blog attention. The record is a near-perfect encapsulation of their early sound, with critics calling it “dazzling, hypnotic and deliriously seductive” and “truly magnificent”. However loud the acclaim, the release was inevitably overshadowed by the shock death of drummer Peter Hayes a few days before release. The band recovered in private. The songwriting pair of guitarist Thom Hill and vocalist Linda Jarvis would spend two years working on the tracks which would form Era in … Read more
"Immensely inspired by the beautiful simplicity embodied by the laws of nature, especially the number Pi and the notion of the golden ratio, Michał Lewicki has always been searching for new ways to implement mathematics into his music. But aiming for the perfect proportions while making the music feel natural and complex at the same time has been no easy feat. In the creation of “Ton” he applied a very technical approach, utilizing various random midi generators, midi delays, polyrhythms, pitch shifters, scales and more in order to create something that posseses a life on its own, bringing hi… Read more
"Sydney's Au.Ra, a duo composed of Tim Jenkins and Tom Crandles, release their new full length Jane's Lament, a work which carefully envelops the listener in dreamy hues of sound. Made over the course of two years, the LP was birthed from improvised jams the pair play over droning guitars and looped drum beats. Tracks like “Sun,” and “Pyramid” emerge slowly out of interplays between simple melodies and layered, reverbed instrumentation. Au.Ra's “emotive soundscapes” perfectly encase their nontraditional pop songwriting, like on highlight “Morning,” where shimmerin… Read more
Shifted follows up his 'Under a Single Banner' LP for Bed Of Nails. Part 1 of a twin 12" set, 'Arrangements in Monochrome' yields four mechanically worn-down grooves seeping from the oily, emulsifying drones of 'You're a Replacement' to the thrumming grey techno missile 'Arrangement In Monochrome I' and over to the viscous momentum of '6ft of Silence' or the ventilation shaft extrusion, 'The Velvet Rope'.
Shifted takes a quieter, creepier tack towards cinematic industrial scapes and pulsing rhythms on 'Part 2' of his 'Arrangements in Monochrome' session. Dangerously opiated and out-of-reach, his sound here marks a subtle step forward/away in terms of sound design, and a more noxious reduction of his signature palette, guiding us from lightless drone and drizzle in 'The Incoherent' to urgently scan ocean floor depths in 'Arrangement In Monochrome II' and the bleakly gorgeous 'Second Wash', while 'Entartung' gets tangled in a flux of rusty aquatic rhythm and 'Lenine' leaves us stranded in alien space station atmospheres.
Hot on the heels of 'The Puppeteer', DRS shows another two faces of his sound. 'The View' is softer, liquid, with fragrant soul vox and brooding bars by DRS; Enei weighs in for a much heavier fusion of footwork perc and hardstep pressure replete with 'floor-shocking drops.
Lustrous ambient and slick, moody electro-house from man-machine Kurt Baggaley (a.k.a Scape One) on Netherlands-based Something Happening, Somewhere label. A-side is spanned by the beatless, oceanic arpeggios and black cloud pads of 'Former Self', culminating in a locked groove vocal intoning the track title. B-side, The Drifter remix fits a rustling tech-house groove to slivers of the original arpeggios with a darker sense of dancefloor romance; 'Far Between' eases off into brooding deep electro reminding of Ra-X's 'Opium Den' sessions.
Schizoid electronica/dance-pop variations from a new avatar to Acéphale. At its widest parameters, 'Almost' takes in everything from trap and R&B to abstract electroncis and amen rinse-outs, but at its core is a '90s trance-pop and trip-hop romance that push queasily nostalgic buttons for many listeners of a ripe age.
Super modern synth-pop from Italian duo, Margot, backed with a fine Erol Alkan remix to kick off Ivan Smagghe's Les Disques De La Mort label. Their original 'Waldorf' is a grinding, darker electro ace, paired with an uptempo, melancholic disco bomb Club mix with vocals reminding of classic Erasure and Bronski Beat. On the B-side, Erol Alkan decelerates and warps the groove with fizzing synths, dubbed percussion and peaking chords for optimal dancefloor effect.
Chevel is one of the most distinctive new techno artists to emerge in this decade. 'Air Is Freedom' (2013) is his 2nd album and a fine introduction to his uniquely cracked but supple, grooving aesthetic. Imagine Bellows making techno with Kowton and Levon Vincent and you've almost got the measure of his style, which is best heard in the off-kilter throbs and crackling small sounds of 'Nightbus', the claggy acid swagger of 'Darios Diet' or the club-ready thwack of 'Entanglement'.
Class club trax by Italian producer Chevel for the Spanish label, Non Series. Skilled and damn effective 909 workouts steeped in Detroit and Berlin techniques but with a kink and parry all of his own style.
"Second solo LP from Causa Sui guitar player/producer Jonas Munk. These three long pieces aren't defined by Munks signature guitar-approach, they are rather the fruits of a musical vision of vintage synthesizers, organs, piano and analog electronics elegantly weaved together to create extensive formations of pure sound. The harmonic simplicity and unrestricted dedication to sonic balance and texture is something of a first in Munk's body of work. This is pattern music, characterized by slow builds and subtle, but refined, transformations, where gradual tectonic shifts and tiny h… Read more