Monday, 11 January 2010
Guido adds yet another string to his bow with a very smart future R'n'B mix of Rox's 'No Going Back'. The hotly tipped Bristolian gives his own spin to Rox's vox with militant kicks, strafing strings and lush synth pads to further cement his own style next to the likes of Joker, Ginz and Gemmy.
Anthem alert! After doing the rounds on dubplate and CDr between those in the know, 'Um Bongo's Revenge' from the hotly tipped Julio Bashmore makes a debut appearance on Claude VonStroke's Dirty Bird imprint. Coming at the end of 2009, this anthemic title track is purely indicative of the blurred boundaries and tropically heated fusions happening in UK dance music (Bashmore is based in London), and spreading bird-flu-like across the world (to labels like San Fran's Dirty Bird). On 'Um Bongo..' Tabla drums fuse with batty-slapping UK subs and ghetto siren calls with a… Read more
**Includes a Boomkat exclusive bonus track** A follow-up to the Volume Objects 12K album release that arrived at the very beginning of the year, Autistici's Complex Tone Test continues to explore a broad spectrum of electroacoustic phenomena, derived from digital, instrumental and naturally occurring sounds. 'Key For A Lockable Cabinet' is an especially striking confluence of these elements, sounding like a study of intermingled woodwind, mellotron and environmental crackle while preserving the implicitly melodic qualities that illuminated the 12K long-player. Delving into more synt… Read more
Ultra-heavyweight techy dubstep from Compound One. This series has resolutely burrowed deeper into a well defind style over the course of five releases, and further hones the method with 'Perhaps The Darkness', programming sharp-shooting snares, overweight subs and darker atmospherics to excite anyone on the brink of the whole D'n'B/Dubstep crossover territory. 'Bad Magic' on the flip rearranges this formula with equally sick results, making two solid tools for the DJs.
Sa-Ra's Shafiq Husayn comes correct with 10"s of spiritual soul powered hiphop backed with a mental Flying Lotus version of 'Evil Man' and J Rocc's mix of 'Cheeba', both lifted from the 'Shafiq En' A-Free-Ka' album. All ears are going to be on that Flying Lotus version, fluctuating between flashes of darkcore inspirations and jittery junglist flex-outs, sounding like he's added a healthy dose of Steve Gurley to his recent listening habits after the Burial inflections of recent works. J. Rocc does a fine job with 'Cheeba' embellishing the ha… Read more
Having released one of the last decade's smartest, most literate debut albums (by a mainstream American indie rock band, at least) Vampire Weekend return with a no less sophisticated sophomore, presenting a broader tapestry of influences and an even more rarefied ear for genre-colliding instrumentation. Still very much in love with the idioms of African pop, 'Horchata' gets the album underway with thumb piano melodies and unconventional beat-making whilst Ezra Koenig's lead vocal is greeted by cradling string arrangements. Equally ambitious in its stylistic scope is the more upbeat 'Whit… Read more
New Manchester label Love & Disaster opens its doors with this four-track EP showcasing some of the city's foremost burgeoning talents: Airship, Dutch Uncles, Jo Rose, Delphic and Everything Everything. Leading the charge is 'Kids' by Airship, whose fiery onslaught is primed to make a good-sized dent in 2010. More angular in its approach and execution is 'Ocduc' by Dutch Uncles, a track that brings to mind Deerhoof, and perhaps even Steve Reich in its playful, yet rather complex interlocking repetitive phrases. The big draw here is bound to be Delphic's 'This Momentary'… Read more
Dry grooving tech-house minimalism from Audion. 'Instant In You' weaves glottal utterances with scraping metallic synths and a hypnotic bassline in classic Audion/Dear style.
Detroit legend Delano Smith does the business with three tracks of irresistible house styles. 'Nebula' is all about the spirit building chord progressions and rubbed disco-bass wiggle, while 'Road To Nowhere' drifts off into purple hued and velvet cushioned synth pads before the superb 'This Heart' takes us to the core of the Motor City with hovering space cruiser synth drones and supple bass to warm the cockles of anyone into classic 313 house. Fans of Tama Sumo, Anton Zap or Cassy should check without delay!
A new ambient release on Moodgadget from New York's Jay Bodley, Flower Garden Of Doom is an EP entrenched in the icy atmospherics of Norwegian black metal, with the artist himself having made admissions to being mildly obsessed with thee mighty Ulver. All that said, there's plenty of light and sonic warmth to 'Sun Hammer Pounding', whose glowing, wafting tones fill the air with gauzy luminosity. You can hear a certain amount of Fennesz's Black Sea in 'Vision Creation Newsun (Version 3)' and 'Men, Women And Children' exudes phantasmagorical loveliness with its crumbling, muffled air currents. Recommended.
As the Someone Good label blurb so evocatively states: "Polaroid cameras did more than simply recount past moments - the medium itself inserted a soft-focus, dream-like quality that appeared to suggest vague recollection over exacting reality." This idea is carried over into Akira Kosemura's delicate instrumentals: they're vague and suggestively wistful, imbued with a sense of time and place with a selection of background field recordings that play to the memory. These pieces are so understated and hushed you can hear the mechanism of the piano and the movement of the keys themselve… Read more
The first thing you need to know about Afternoon Saints is the line-up: Sonic Youth's Lee Ranaldo joins with avant-garde icons Christian Marclay, Gunter Muller and David Watson. Additionally, the recording sessions were mixed down and edited by Jim O'Rourke. This stellar meeting of minds resulted in an album's worth of bizarre soundscapes, collages and free-jazz drone exercises. Ranaldo is joined by Watson on guitar, although the veteran New Zealander also features prominently on bagpipes - surely one of the most underused instruments in the experimental music world. Backi… Read more
Room40 reissue the British guitarist's experimental album, dedicated (apparently) to the dubious charms of the Hawaiian shirt. Mike Cooper has been a figurehead of Britain's blues, jazz and R&B scenes since the 1960s, leaning towards the avant-garde with later collaborations alongside Lol Coxhill, Keith Rowe, Eddie Prevost, David Toop and Steve Beresford. More recently, Cooper recorded an album for Room40 with Necks pianist Chris Abrahams, but this recording takes us back half a decade or so to a collection of solo, exotica-influenced electroacoustic experiments. Cooper's fixation on al… Read more
A record from one of the three founding members of Belgium's notorious Funeral Folk collective - and perhaps more notably, a member of Sylvester Anfang - Hellvete is very much in a similar mode to last year's Sylvester Anfang II album, with a key difference being a tightening of the more structured and composed elements of that sound. Otherwise, the same haunted, avant-garde campfire drones are in place, with creepy acoustic passages jostling alongside submerged, smudgy production and trance-inducing, hypnotic rhythms.
Smarter dubstep experiments from Russia's i3i3 on Eight:FX. 'Explosion Mind' uses what sounds like a classic techno riff over shuffling 2-step breaks while 'Rock & Groove It' uses shuddering metallic dub chords to build a tense riddim for fans of the Mindset imprint or Peverelist.
For this latest album Adam Green eschews many of the loungier, croonier tendencies of previous efforts in favour of more rough-edged fare, and from the very start it sounds as if its paying off. During the album's first entry, 'Breaking Locks', Green wearily checks into a hotel and memorably announces: "I took off my winter clothes/My body looked like forty or fifty crows", describing himself as "a barechested ghoul with his cigarette eyes and visible drool" and "too awful to ever be thoughtful". You always get the sense that there's a certain amount of archness behind all this, though th… Read more
Ecstatic Peace regulars Tall Firs join forces with Soft Location, who were introduced to one another by that other longstanding EP act, Awesome Color. Spearheading this record is the sultry vocal presence of Kathy Leisen, whose singing somehow conjures references to both Chan Marshall and Neko Case whilst not sounding especially like either. There is a certain authoritative presence to Leisen's vocal, whose delivery is crowned with a tangible atmospheric resonance on these recordings, cradled in a delicate web of clean guitar tones and expertly poised drumming. There's … Read more
Moonbeam (aka Pavel Khaleyev and Vitaly Khaleyev) are a prolific pair, racking up releases on all manner of different labels, with Traum being a regular stopping off point. This latest single underlines the virtues of the duo's hi-tech, high energy club music, leading with the appropriately ferocious 'Tiger', which is anything but minimal with its use of slavering, rampant basllines.
Another pairing of tracks culled from Paul Kalkbrenner's Berlin Calling soundtrack, this time fronted by crunching 4/4 funk of 'Bengang', which really sets itself apart with cut up guitar samples and a driving, almost Yello-like take on dub-techno in the second half. 'Torted' is a more by-the-book club track with minimal, stabbing chords and the most stripped bare of pumping drum patterns.
Backed by three solid remixes, this latest EP from Roland M Dill arrives with a lead track, 'Low Go', that's built on satisfyingly glitchy beats and a big, booming bassline with plenty of snarl. Darko Esser and Secret Cinema offer overhauls, while the Sian remix seems to bring a little more breathing space into the mix whilst introducing an element of playful menace via the noisy bass enhancements.
Former Proptronix fixture PJ Pooterhoots drops his minimal tech-house styles of yore in favour of four hard-screwed electro joints. 'Miami Swipe' comes across like Otto Von Schirach writing a CBBC theme tune, while 'Touch The Back In Time' has a spastic jitter-boogie agenda and 'Chase' speeds up an electro classic until it devolves into an electroid mulch.
Hugely impressive instro-hip-hop dynamics from the Lucky Me-associated Loops Haunt. 'Impact Omnihammer' is his first release, dropping two tracks of insane crushed beat styles on the increasingly crafty Black Acre imprint. The title track gives the wonked-beat ting an industrial jack-boot to the teef with shockingly well manipulated rhythms, before 'Joplin' shows his nicer side with dainty melodies and beats like Clark tussling with Architeq over the last line of Kenny. A must check for fans of techy, beat-driven electronics - highly recommended!