Monday, 25 August
Master-craftsman, Kevin Martin absolutely murders it with his fourth and finest LP as The Bug. A perennial pest at the outposts of dub, ragga, extreme noise and electronics, The Bug treats his periodic albums as dispatches from the brink, and 'Angels & Devils' is his most captivating of them all. Blessed with, and structured around sterling vocals from some of his favourite artists - Liz Harris (aka Grouper), Gonjasufi, Death Grips, Copeland, Flowdan, Manga, Miss Red, Warrior Queen - plus a collaboration with JK Flesh, it marks a pinnacle of not only his hard-wrought sound design skills, b… Read more
LA's Mono/Poly makes good with his most high profile album to date landing on Flying Lotus's Brainfeeder. "From the first orchestral trills of “Winds of Change” you know you’re in for something special. As the track builds the listener notices not only the content but also the production chops – this is a record which sounds exactly as big, glossy and up front as its creator wants it to. Rebekah Raff adds scintillating harp work to “Transit to the Gold Planet,” but it’s the way Dickerson integrates it and builds on it which is really special. “Ra Rise” sounds like sunbathing in space, Nik… Read more
Masterful modular techno poundings from the Brummie techno boss - his first proper Token release following a remix of Grovskopa's 'Sex and Violins' in 2008. Both cuts are recognisably Surgeon productions, but perhaps not instantly so due to his new palette of modular synths. The original 'Fixed Action Pattern' galvanises signature shuffle and bruising kicks with a bristling, chaotic noise energy that's a thrilling new addition to his sound, whilst the aquatic Dub carves the groove to a solemn halfstep lurch steeped in sepulchral groans and consumed by oncoming waves of masticated electricity. It's a real burner.
From hooded Wegie scamp to world-taking producer, Rustie continues to blaze a neon trail with his crackshot 2nd album, 'Green Language'. Packing all the stomach-churning, heart-bursting rush of a triple-barrelled mitsi, it's a dancefloor melding, accelerationist expression of emotions that can't be adequately summed up in the English lexicon, amped with guest vocals by D Double E, Redinho, Danny Brown and Gorgeous Children. It scales up the thizz attacks of 'Glass Swords' to impossibly ecstatic levels with his signature blend of tiered harmonies, crashing trap dynamics and traces of jaw-br… Read more
Sudanim drops a pair of proper bobby dazzlers on Her Records, backed with serious remix treatments from new cats, Drippin and Amotion. 'Pleasure Flood' is a fiercely shark-eyed reduction of ballroom, Baltimore and London club styles littered with the sound of spent shells and, quite brilliantly, not a melody in sight; it's a pure percussive thrill. Likewise, 'Abondance' allows any excess, twysting out industrialised drums and surging bass to steel the best 'floors. Remixing the former, Drippin makes an impressive introduction with his tetchy, quarter-tone edits and trap whirrs, whilst Amo… Read more
Neo-no wave agitator $hit & $hine dumps a killer funk load on Powell's Diagonal Records, hard on the heels of 2014 madness from the label boss, plus Russell Haswell and Bronze Teeth. 'Powder Horn''s wiry, banjoed skronk marks Craig Clouse aka $&$'s 1st new album since 'Jream Baby Jream' and that split slab with Gnod back in 2012. Poised between rambunctious clatter and clipped, in-the-pocket groove, nine tracks fling-a-body from the virile strut of 'Astro's Hat' to the burned-out Pump styles of 'Spray Bottle', taking in the rollicking jag of 'Bingo' and the nitrous-fuelled breakbeat torsi… Read more
Downwards' gloomiest duo summon the spirits of Coil and Cocteau Twins on this compelling sophomore 12". Like Teutonic cousins to Blackest Ever Black's Dalhous, Oake channel wide ranging influences from film, literature and esoteric musics to create texturally rich and evocative arrangements which don't necessarily sit well in any pre-ordained genre. Their 2nd outing is a bleak call to like-minded souls, using worm-charming subsonic pulses and banking wails on 'Sehtohree Diin Chromtas Vehns' to seduce both techno heads and goths, whilst 'Tuturden Giit Chreteen Dwe' displays an increasingly vis… Read more
Proper bass excitement from Addison Groove featuring a serious footwork soul joint with the late DJ Rashad. Gwan ruffer than his recent album, 'Dat Ass' boots up flashing Chic stabs and killah strings inna pumping Miami Electro mutation, whereas 'Push It' hooks up happy hardcore/jungle samples on a pneumatic footwork bass and 'Masamune' flexes out with forward '97 D&B styles nodding to Source Direct or Photek with a mnml 2014 stance. Best of all is the uncannily titled 'U Been Gone' with Chicago's recently deceased footwork pioneer, DJ Rashad, in flux between Dilla-style soul sample chops, junglist breaks and manic bass cadence. Big shotta!
J Mascis’ ‘Tied To A Star’, the follow up to his acclaimed Sub Pop debut ‘Several Shades Of Why’, is led by the songs ‘Every Morning’ and ‘Wide Awake’, was recorded and produced by Mascis and mixed by John Agnello at Bisquiteen in Amherst, MA. ‘Tied To A Star’ also features guest appearances from musicians Ken Maiuri, Pall Jenkins (Black Heart Procession), Mark Mulcahy (Miracle Legion) and Chan Marshall (Cat Power).
Enchanting, refreshing house from Deepblak's Damon Bell for London's Meda Fury division of R&S. Positively spilling over with good vibes, 'Hue-Man Made' serves five tracks of Afro-centric rhythms sprinkled with lush keys and radiant synths to mark out ground between Jamal Moss at his most lucid, and the supple grooves of Mr Raoul K or Aybee. Check for the breezy strums and triplet gyrations of 'Hue-Man Made' or the beaming cosmic grooves of 'Radius' and 'Enthusiastic Minor'.
Nimble, dreamy remixes from LoVil (Ricardo Villalobos and Max Loderbauer) and the Booma Collective's Oren Ratowsky & Solpara. The LoVil version of 'Pendule' is surely one of the best (of many) remixes in recent memory from the venerable Berliners, squashing the groove to a seductively sticky pulp swarmed with old skool early '90s ambient pads inna 2014 hi-tech jazz style. Ratowsky & Solpara's remix is pedestrian by comparison, but useful for dreamier tech-house times.
Dark0 follows his Lost Codes debut with a lean, trancey grime session for Mr. Mitch's Gobstopper label. Like Slackk or Ikonika's forward styles, Dark0 fuses brittle 2-step/grime patterns with well-oiled, fluoro folk/road melodies in a distinctly UK fashion. However, unlike the aforementioned, his sound also errs close to Hybrid or Sasha-like prog arrangements, and if we're getting wavey in the club at 3am, it's got strobe appeal...
Canada's fertile pop/electronica scene comes good again with Evelyn Mason and Jeremiah Klein's first single as Evy Jane for Ninja Tune. Lest we forget, the duo's debut for King Deluxe was a real burner, every bit as addictive as anything from fellow Canucks, Grimes, Weeknd or Junior Boys. That's in large part due to the smoky allure of Evelyn's vocals, and no doubt due to Klein's subtly exquisite production, which sound at best here in the heaving digital haze and melodic tristesse of 'Closer', in the sweeping sub-bass dynamics and filigree vocals of 'Sosoft', and the Rhythm & Sound meets Junior Boys dub-pop styles of 'Worry Heart'.
Space-headed slo-mo techno/hip hop trips from R&S's new signing. Five tracks explore downtempo zones akin to Cloud Boat in 'On The Edge Surrounded With The Shores Of Assudrey', beside the sci-fi hip hop noise of 'Deer Drink From The River' and two pieces of scratchy modular noise in 'Dialectic A' & Dialectic B'. Fans of Fhloston Paradigm or Herva should check it oot.
Reissue of 'Oceanheart', the 1986 follow-up to 'Synthesist' by Ashra drummer Harald Grosskopf. Whilst its better known predecessor dealt on the cusp of Krautrock's twilight period and new age spheres, 'Oceanheart' very much sounds of its mid '80s era with polished digital drums and synths balanced between the dancefloor and Miami yacht decks. The DJs really need to cop a listen to the taut, arpeggiated funk of 'Eve On The Hill', the MIDI-tethered tablas, slick bassline and sparkling pirouettes of 'Pondicherry Dream', and the airborne swing of 'Minimal Boogie', whilst suave home liste… Read more
'Synthesist' was created on the cusp of a new decade, as the New Age of the '80s was dawning and the titans of Krautrock had largely left their best work behind them. Harald had worked with the very best of them, playing drums on seminal albums by Klaus Schulze, the notorious Cosmic Jokers, Ashra, and Tarot before he retreated to the West German countryside with a MiniMoog and Revox Reel-to-Reel in 1979 to create his personal opus. It's been said elsewhere, but it bears repeating that this album feels like a symbiosis of the two eras, the proggy excesses of the '70s reigned in by per… Read more
Nimble, fruity tech-house standards from UK legend Colin McBean aka Mr. G. 'P Bar Jam' pays dues to Berlin's most notorious nightspot with a skipping 909 groove and sultry chords; 'Tripped Out' eases off on a skanking deep techno/house flex midway between Radioslave and Chain Reaction styles; 'End Of Day Jam' slydes out to poised organ chords and laidback, effervescent groove.
*Digital edition with bonus remixes from Perc and Alex Deamonds* Tensile techno, grime and electro-bass rhythms from the ever-luminous Ikonika for Hyperdub. In contrast to her previous records, there's the feeling she's taken a step back from full-on modernism to bring vintage styles forward in her unique way. A-side, 'Position' jacks up a wily fusion of Dance Mania/Chicago house with Socafied Grime and electroid synthlines, and 'Praxis' twirls a glistening helix of industrial halfstep drums and bittersweet, 3D synth motifs. Flipside is better yet, bringing the crisply punc… Read more
**Airless, ecstatic modular music from former member of Godspeed You Black Emperor** "Five years after founding Le Révélateur, Montreal-bred musician Roger Tellier-Craig returns to Root Strata with Extreme Events, a collection of dense sonic studies that betray a futuristic and timeless beauty. Alongside collaborator Sabrina Ratté, who creates the project’s videos and live visuals, Le Révélateur operates at the ideological intersection of audio and visual, analog and digital, nostalgic and anticipatory, human and machine. Extreme Events is characterized by complex rhythmic asymmetry… Read more
"Telecult Powers, the candle burning duo of Witchbeam & Mr. Matthews, known for their ritualistic live shows and previous releases on Baked Tapes, Draft, Pizza Night and more, bestow upon us their new album "Black Meditations", a six part sonic meditation on the connections between man, myth & magic. “Black Meditations” taps into the world of folk magic, reaching out to the spirit world through sonic practice, with the duo praying at an altar of bizarre electronic instruments handcrafted by Mr. Matthews. Through this "Hoodootronix" music Telecult Powers taps into the current in… Read more
Traag follows his alter ego Siobhan's 'Southgate' LP for Opal Tapes with a raw, sleazy session for Italy's Gang Of Ducks. Punkishly cocked with drawling vocals and greased up with slow, kinky boogie and electro rhythms, it lands somewhere between '20 Jazz Funk Greats'-era TG and the snottier No Wave styles of Dracula Lewis or $hit & $hine, at best in the loping, reverse edit loops and snivelly delivery of 'Win The Lotto', the mutant disco propulsions of 'Mr. Alan', 'Rubber Doll' and 'Stray Dog', or the coiled electro slither of 'Tropical Fruit'.
Slickly irresistible swing-jaxx from one of the biggest UK house production units. 'Mistakes' is a perfectly measured, in-the-pocket burner with sweet vocal, '90s Korg M1 riff and supple subs; 'Dimensions' is tuffer, reminds of Karizma productions; 'Bird Flu' is a freakier tribal driver with wicked balance of dark stabs and frothy 4th world vibes; 'Foorest' is a sonar-scanning reduction of trippy bleep techno and skanking minimal house.
Bobby Champs, West Norwood Cassette Library, Kevin McPhee and J. Tijn as remixed by J. Tijn, Knowing Looks, Kamikaze Space Programme, and WNCL. J. Tijn turns Champs' 'Krenshaw' into a bruising/bruised techno tool and Knowing Looks sparks WBCL's 'Drop' as a breakbeat 'ardcore ruction. Kamikaze Spacxe Programme runs roughshod over Mcphee's 'In Circles' for a rugged drum tool, and WNCL cools off on a remix of J. Tijn's 'Flat'.
A trio of burned-out house bangers from Detroit's Patricia plus a dead shifty remix from James T Cotton. As with Patricia's 'Body Issues' release for Opal Tapes and Inhalants 12" with Jahiliyya Fields for L.I.E.S., their debut on Ghostly International presents a heavily obfuscated house style, burying fizzing, toiling drum machines and melancholic pads behind ferric smokescreens. The style is most effective in the motor city moodiness of 'Hulderhusan' and 'Foie Gras', but the most effective dancefloor cut has to be JTC's itchin' I-94 Lick of 'Drip Dawn'.
Burly EBM electro-techno by former Instra:mental-ist damon Kirkham aka Jon Convex. Both tracks make much more explicit reference to the '80s and '90s heyday of EBM and 'ard techno than most of his contemporaries, laying down strong kicks, cowbells and slinky rimshots boosted with mauling acid bassline on 'Force', and some proper Front 242/ Nitzer Ebb sexiness in the powerful throb of 'Snake'.
Ital continues to twist the putative conventions of house and techno on his third album in two years. 'Endgame' feels light years away from his earliest transmissions of natty, lo-fi house, and much closer to brooding, minimal, modern house and techno styles, eking out a headier, weirder space somewhere between the styles of Tin Man, Kassem Mosse, and Joey Anderson, for comparison. The difference between then and now is perhaps his switch from software to select pieces of hardware, resulting in a more linear plot and liquified, worm-holing momentum on 'Endgame', no doubt enhanced by mixing and mast… Read more
Midland's Autonomous Africa gang regroup for a 3rd session, this time accompanied by General Ludd. Midland opens with the raspin' drums, chants and Carl Craig-style progressions of 'Safi' beside General Judd's scuffed 'n skippy Glasgow bassbin killer, 'Burning Mask'. B-side, Auntie Flo captains the soulful, hypnotic vocal and drum percolations of 'Daabi' somewhere between London and Tanzania, and we find JD Twitch at his loosest with the lilting riddmic cadence of 'Maya' making for a dizzy tribal trip. All of the label's profits from sale of this record go to the Mtandika Mission in Tanzania.
**Superb Thai psychedelia, strongly recommended to fans of Sublime Frequencies or Chris Menist's Paradise Bangkok label!** It all started over a year ago with the caption “MINDBLOWING PSYCHEDELIA FROM THAILAND” the Youtube video that accompanied this head line on the Dangerous Minds Blog was exactly that. Here was a group of Thai musicians being filmed parading through a remote village hundreds of miles away from Bangkok playing some of the heaviest Psych known to mankind out of a crazy homemade soundsystem. Who were these men and how on earth was this not some unearth… Read more