Monday, 07 December 2009
Mancunian sextet Table are led by David O'Dowda, whose songwriting drives the band's enigmatic, subdued soundscape. The muffled, electronic tones of 'Songs You Can Sing On Your Own' cast the overwhelming prettiness of the piece in a peculiar glow of understatement, eventually building up to more lyrical guitar and piano accompaniment. In a comparably low-key fashion, 'Most' almost plays out like a quiet To Rococo Rot track, its pulsing backing track facilitating minimal piano melodies while harmonised voices tune into a lamentful groan.
Big room-ready dub techno tracks from the Echologist aka Brendon Moeller. It's four tracks of the usual high-quality you'd expect from somebody of Moeller's stature, from the cavernous reverbs of 'Giant' to the deeper house atmospheres of 'Swell' and the pumping epic 'Ritual' made for the get-down crew.
Full Pupp's Ytre Rymden Dansskola roll out the misty-eyed Balearic disco vibes on three tracks baced with a remix from the prolific Lindbaek and Frisvold. It's all about opulent synths and over-lush vibes here, from the disco-swoon of 'Bange Anelser' to the mesmerising, sauna-heated keys of 'Kahluha Madness' and a slightly noodlier version of the maturely paced 'Bange Anelser' from Frisvold & Lindbaek, keeping the atmosphere suitably laidback and smug.
Sensuous house treats from the deeper end of the pool. Following solid releases from Anton Zap and Lerosa, the Brit-based imprint collects tracks from STL, Vakula, Jagged and The Zohar. It's Jagged's 'Hollywood' that sets the tone for the EP with an instructional late night groove for the lovers while The Zohar delves into the sumptuous bass depths of 'Getting Down In My Car' for any fans of Rick Wilhite or Trus'me. Meanwhile, STL gives another lesson in pure machine control with 'Myxmassong' stretching out on 10 mins of shimmering midnight chords and sushi-raw beats b… Read more
London's infamous Ali Renault does one for the weirdos on David Vunk's Moustache Records with four tracks of man stirring electro disco inspired by the trip from Chester to Rotterdam (666km, 9hours 35 mins by car). The 'Running On Vapours' EP cruises by the slick 'Rimini Boyz' and the slo-mo disco drag of 'Dockland Dirt' before pulling in at Kenny's truckstop-disco with 'Running On Vapours' and finishing with a Hi-NRG flounce on 'Melloch'. Klass.
Marco Bernardi has garnered notable support throughout the decade for a string of cherished and well recieved releases for a host of labels like Frustrated Funk, Clone, and Soma (under his Octogen alias). It's always been hard to pin down his style, as he restlessly shifts between all manner of Detroit related disciplines from techno to electro and house, with a constant theme of proper machine soul comparable to Convextion's Gerard Hanson. 'Switches, Drawers and Washing Machines' is his first album under his birth name, peering over the full breadth of his st… Read more
Dos Mas make their debut of darkside dystopian electro on the Clone affiliated Frustrated Funk imprint. Apparently the duo of J. Garcia and L. Gomes have links with a Spanish clique of the notorious Central American gang MS-13, and this is probably the first and last release from Dos Mas, which is a massive shame because they sound a lot like Ultradyne or Drexciya in a stinking mood with a doomy take on the purist analog electro style. Ace.
Heavily chopped-up orchestral sampling resides at the core of the lead production on this Kadebostan EP, 'Monkey Swing (Straight To The Zoo Mix)'. It develops into a pretty impressive Eastern European-themed folk-techno track by the end - not the sort of thing to be forgotten in a hurry. 'Love In Looxor' isn't nearly so confrontational but features some beautiful, maudlin string sampling and muted pad chords, while 'Vodka Wedding' picks up the pace a little but preserves the Baltic instrumental flavours of the prior tracks.
Warmer house tracks from the ever-excellent Swayzak backed with Rennie Foster and Shane Berry remixes. Their original mixes of 'Easy' and 'Hof Ter Lo' work up a sexy mid-90's house feel while Shane Berry's 'Dirty Works Mix' of 'Easy' adds a deep-but-raw feel with electro-fried synthlines and Foster turns 'Hof Ter Lo' into a much more successful dubby tech-house version with swirling synthline psychedelics. Ace.
This single is a cover of the Jim Reeves festive classic by vintage-styled popsters Camera Obscura, who do a splendid job of converting the winsome country roll of the original into something more in-keeping with their luscious girl group sounds. They even get some Christmas bells chiming, and at the end - as the story reaches its sad conclusion - you hear the blizzard winds starting to gather. Lovely.
Toughened rave tools from three long standing dubstep soldiers. On the A-side Kromestar hooks up with Leeds stalwart Distinction on a rude electro flecked riddim made with the sharpened drops and precise elements for the DJs to get busy wth, while Finnish dubstep rudeboy Tes La Rock curdles the riddim on 'Do You Know The Future' with mid-range strikes aimed straight for ya stomach...
Fonky happy-house from Jesse Rose backed with a Savage Skulls remix. Together with a little engineering help from label head and Switch producer Dave Taylor, Rose give it up for the party with some jaunty sample-work and electro stabs to get the fidget kids excited. On the flip Savage Skulls blend in a shot of potent Booty flavour, adding slapping claps and taut edits for a surefire floor-burning version. Big fun!
Sweden's Jinder (neé Little Jinder) sweeps into town with the charming electro pop of 'Youth Blood' backed up with a crucial revision from Bok Bok and further dubstep/nu-raving remixes. The original blatantly screams pop potential with captivating Scando chord changes and alluring Euro-disco vocals like some perkier cousin to Sally Shapiro, but all our attention is on the Bok Bok mix. The Funky upstart makes great use of the originals tangfastic synths while adding his own darkside bass hum and clacking riddim syncopations, doing it proper disco 3000 styles. Followin… Read more
Two kings of the fidget/electro-house empire featuring remixes from Nacho Lovers and Noob...
Prins Thomas's Internasjonal label delivers two new productions presented by Colin 'The Mole' de la Plante: 'Family' is loaded with luscious disco stylings, soundtrack-style strings and bouts of electric piano. 'Rotation' relies yet more on the Rhodes action, stabbing in amongst deep, almost tribal hand-played percussion.
Dark, simmering melodic techno from the man behind My Best Friend, stirring up a deep and involving chord progression along with minimal, shuffling beats and whirring atmospherics, all conspiring to render a curiously futuristic midtempo soundscape.
Calling upon the assistance of Patrice Baumel, Riley Reinhold showcases some more of his work via his own My Best Friend label, featuring his own production 'Lights Go Out', whose defining feature is a rather beautiful line in quivering, William Basinski-style eroded piano lines, fleshing out the customary Reinhold minimalist beat framework. Baumel's take on 'Klaus' ditches the rather effective , almost elegaic tone of its companion in favour of brash, arpeggiating synth lines and an overwhelming sense of motorised propulsion.
Its title is track lifted from the eponymous Blue Roses debut long-player, but the remainder of this four-track EP points towards slightly different, new directions. New song 'First Frost Night' expands upon the rickety homespun folk of the album and makes gestures towards slightly more ethereal Bat For Lashes-style material. Further to that there's an Irma Thomas cover included ('Anyone Who Knows What Love Is (Will Understand)') plus a great live recording of 'Doubtful Comforts' recorded with Grammatics.
Building up to the release of Tycho's forthcoming album, 'Coastal Brake' gets the single treatment, delivered with remixes from Danish shoegaze-tronica hero Manual, Ghostly regular Lusine and cosmic disco enthusiast Hatchback. The original sees producer Scott Hansen looking beyond the Boards Of Canada influences that tended to characterise early works. Those warm, vintage-styled synths are still very much present, but the upbeat tone of the production and its deep, warm rhythm section lend a broader appeal. The Manual remix sounds very much as you'd expect, full of reverberant splashes and… Read more
Nu-Balearic institution Subway deliver a varied three tracker for the on-trend London imprint, Deadly People. The group show the breadth of their talent with cuts ranging from the cool Krautrock-disco drive of 'DBO' reaching for the stars while the goovier 'Outbreak' relaxes to a pastoral disco pace with a charming British/German crossover appeal, followed by the arcing arpeggiations of 'Vanguard' coming off like Belbury Poly for the dancefloor. For analog fetishists everywhere.
Basement Jaxx's recent album, Scars, was originally conceived as a double album, with one disc designed as an outlet for the band's customary festival-pleasing floor-filling anthems and the other taking on a more unexpected, ambient persona. Perhaps predictably, Scars turned out to be a far leaner affair than this original idea might have led to, leaving a hefty portion of 'soundscape' left over. So here it is, presented as Zephyr, a collection of far more experimental, textural works than you'd expect from Basement Jaxx, although the appetite for star guests remains in place: that giant o… Read more
It took us a while, but we eventually came down from the high of that first Blue Daisy EP, only to be bowled over again this week with four more tracks of the lushest post-dubstep/instrumental hiphop. 'Strings Detached' presents another of his pressurised house/garage templates, compressing the rhythm under tonnes of ambient wooze to make the rhythm fray and dissipate with each loop, constantly cycling through mutating reverb and delay settings for psyched effect. On the flip 'Hunterz' shows another side to Blue Daisy with a smart-banging hiphop rhythm scrunched in the style of Sam… Read more