Monday, 25 August
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
"Montreal's Sami Blanco (one half of previous 1080 releasee AT/NU) digs back into the most classic of sungazing rhythmic ambient ideals for "Daydream Drawings". Currently living way out in Yellowknife, Temple Volant made this 60 minute cassette entirely with an Electribe sampler and collages of field recordings, ambient drones, noisier rhythmic textures & lo-fi bath folk. Temple Volant is the supremely colour-drenched celebration of the human body being the vehicle for the soul, with heavy holistic vibes leaned against fuzzy, familiar experimental sonics. “Daydream Drawings” medi… Read more
Dynooo deals his most striking body of work in 'These Flaws Are Mine To War With'. Paralleling the sheer contoured aesthetics of peers and like-minded artists such as James Ferraro, M.E.S.H. and TCF - whose remix was a highlight of Dynooo's 'Mesh N2 Air' LP - his 4th album since 2011 revels in hyper-lucid textures and finely layered, detailed dynamics rent in elegant, spacious arrangements to fall headlong for. It feels as though it's operating in multiple dimensions at once, strafing piquant pizzicato strings and choral synth voices across wide ambient scapes intersected… Read more
"Severed Heads are one of the longest surviving bands to emerge from the Australian post-punk independent music scene. They began in Sydney in 1979, incorporating elements of 'industrial' noise-generation, tape cutting & looping and electronic sound synthesis. As the project developed song-structures and vocals were employed in a more-or-less recognizable mutant electro pop style. After many line-up changes featuring Gary Bradbury and psychedelic guitarist Simon Knuckey, Severed Heads was the vehicle for composer Tom Ellard. By 1983 they released a C-60 cassette called “Since The … Read more
As James Murphy of LCD Soundsystem said of “The Bus”, “I always wanted to make a song that sounded like that* "Executive Slacks was spawned in Philadelphia by three restless art students - Matt Marello, John Young and Albert Ganss in the early 1980s. Starting out with performance art in subways, they soon took their angst-ridden act to galleries and night clubs. They recorded four songs in the fall of 1982 that became their self-titled EP released by local independent label Red Records in 1983. On their debut EP Matt Marello roars and churns out white-hot shards of guitar while… Read more
Anthony Naples mans up the 3rd 12" on his Proibito label after sessions from Huerco S (Royal Crown Of Sweden) and Local Artist. Side A jams hard with booty-slamming kicks and filtered synthlines coming off like Delroy Edwards reworking old skool Daft Punk before sailing out to a finale of lush new age chords. On Side B he comes craftier with nifty drum programming and shifty, strangely dubbed-out chords, again descending to a blown-out breakdown only to return groggier and washed out. Canny stuff, check it oot.
Following a cool Public Information album, Austin Cesear's debut for Anthony Naples' Proibito is by turns one of the label's lushest and most challenging releases to date. On one hand you've got a dreamy deep house groove rich with warm sub-bass and strewn with breezy soul-strung samples on the B-side '1 Year', while the flipside is all about deferred gratification and experimentalism, with the filtered, detached loops of 'Yep' and the brittle strangely compressed space and unyielding build of 'Slink'.
Grubby, swangin' house and techno trax from Hank Jackson for Anthony Naples' Proibito label. Hot on the heels of his outstanding Mister Saturday Night Records single, Hank knuckles down to a ruddier, shiftier sound here, from the seasick jack of 'Palee Hit' to the insistent tribal cadence of 'Track 3' and the tape head-melting distortion and groggy welt of 'Sizzler'.
From Kansas via Brooklyn, Huerco S returns with four ferric-drenched psy-house shufflers for Anthony Naples' Proibito label. His first new material since that ace debut album 'Colonial Patterns' and the 'Aphelia's Theme' 12" for Future Times is distinguished by a subtle expansion and concentration of his sound - basslines feel chewier, knotted, and the atmospheres wider, lusher. A-side loads up one piece of decelerated groove and melting kosmiche dub tones, plus a slinky filter shimmy that comes off like a Soundhack inversion. B-side goes heavier with the kicks inna gritted, grun… Read more
Anthony Naples' Proibito label introduces Toronto's Local Artist on a gritty, charmingly rudimentary techno/house session. The big tune is A-side banger, 'Mr. Kiwi's', a frisky combination of latinized shakers and pinging delays anchored by a proper, bootin' kick drum, while the rest of the EP hovers between disco-looped deep house on 'Zero Zero Four', and more skewed, dubbed out groove experiments on the flip with the Syncom Data-like dust shimmy of 'Sun Raw', and the Huerco S or Madteo-esque hypnotiser, 'Mansion Of Hours'.
Anthony Naples' Proibito label unfurls its first delivery; three tracks from Huerco S in his Royal Crown Of Sweden guise, backed with murky remix by Bookworms, Steve Summers, and Lori Antenes. From the sounds of it, the whole gang have been heavily dosing up on vintage Theo Parrish records and DJ sets. A-side, he comes close to STL for that sluggish sorta red-eyed Theo worship with the crooked, overlapping bass grooves and melting 4-bar loops of 'Vänern', but there comes a point just before half-way when the elements mystifyingly coalesce and you realise its own pr… Read more
Dark Entries' rampant reissue agenda continues apace with the eponymous debut by prolific French synth-poppers, Opera Multi Steel. Expect typically elegant gallic pop a la The Human League in 'Rien', thru a sort of pacy, baroque take on Talking Heads in 'Fêtês Komité', to the noirish emoting of 'Jardin Botanique' and the disco-prime 'Massabielle'.
"The best improvisors are the ones that seem to invent and uninvent their instruments right in front of your eyes and ears. Swedish pianist Sten Sandell and Norwegian drummer Paal Nilssen-Love are two musical champions with a long experience of doing exactly that. ”Jacana”, the latest in our occasional series of unusual duo combinations, features the pair’s sparky improvised set captured at the 2013 Kongsberg Jazz Festival in southern Norway. ”Jacana”’s three tracks find the players flying close to the limits of their comfort zones, sometimes resembling the strange formalit… Read more