Monday, 18 August
Kompakt gang on annual manoeuvres with 2 CDs, 25 tracks of European house and modern disco. In among the minimal tech-house standards you'll find some peachy highlights, none more so than the Voigt Brothers' swaggering 'Tischlein Deck Dich'; Saschienne's darkside EBM driver 'Horacio Delirium'; the big room romp of Maceo Plex's 'Conjure Superstar'; the tucked triplets of Thomas Fehlmann's 'Eye'; or the midi pomp of Jürgen Paape's 'Heuriger'.
Lil Jabba brings different, trippy styles to the fore on his keenly awaited follow-up to the 'Scales' album for Local Action. On 'Gully' for True Patnther, the Brooklyn-based producer adds potent traces of techno, trap, and jungle to his Footworking frameworks in six parts covering a broader range of tempos and moods. We can think of few producers in this field who apply such a painterly sensibility to their work, from the fluid darkside strokes, sprayed beats and pointillist melody of 'GRoTTo Anthem' to the hyper-detailed, lucid nightmare vision of 'FLeXIN. (Jabba's CuT.)', taking in the odd-wo… Read more
*Excellent collection of fractal electronics and disrupted 808 beats from New York-based conceptual artist James Hoff Mastered at Dubplates & Mastering, Berlin. Artwork constructed using viral images from James Hoff with typography by Bill Kouligas** James Hoff's razor sharp second LP for PAN, 'Blaster' reveals the effects of computer viruses upon the composition process, and their potential to fxxk with networks of communication. Across a seven-track A-side suite, and a B-side of 'Scratch' tools, Hoff uses the eponymous computer virus to infect 808 drum patterns which become the mutant build… Read more
**Upfront Exclusive** Samuel Kerridge puts a donk on it for Blueprint, backed with three of his signature doom scapes. The Berlin-based artist's follow-up to 'A Fallen Empire' opens with the pounding coda and descending tones of 'Operation Neptune', streaking slow-motion Stuka screams over tortured bass hits to asphyxiating effect, whilst the bombed-out 'Surrender To The Void' sculpts monolithic black metal riffs and slow roiling drums reminding of Pan Sonic. B-side, 'Paint It Black' spills evil, muscle-wasting drones and bone-snapping percussion before rearing up the twisted metal relief of 'Paint It Black (Reprise)'. Strong twelve.
"This collaboration – featuring the two strongest Nordic voices around today – started back in 2009 as an exchange of letters, then developed into two live performances, one at Oslo Jazz Festival, the other at the Henie Onstad Art Centre, where this album was recorded. Mixed and mastered by Helge Sten (Deathprod, Supersilent), Meshes Of Voice presents a stunning vocal universe of confessions, whispers and seductions. A key inspiration was film maker Maya Deren’s surrealist, cyclical Meshes of the Afternoon, a milestone of visionary film from 1943, creating a complex world of musical fictions akin to those of Julia Holter and Joanna Newsom"
Demented, Brutal, heavy techno session from Surgeon and Regis - finally available on download formats.
Pye Corner Audio expands on 'Black Mist', taken from 'The Outer Church' compilation released by Front & Follow, now backed with new track and a blown-out Old Apparatus remix. The dramatic original is given time and space to let that Dr. Who-style bass riff and soaring synth to take flight across the A-side, whilst the flip brings the funereal slow techno processional, 'Bulk Erase', into play beside a roiling, radiant render from Old Apparatus, who also fold in oriental field recordings to abstract and exotic effect.
Sigha's Our Circula Sound label racks up cat#002 featuring one original track, and remixes by Shifted and James Ruskin. 'The Politics Of Dying' is a solid DJ tool, structured rigid and unremitting for dark room actions. The Shifted remix smudges its sharp contours for a more dubbed, swinging groove, while James Ruskin subtly strafes closer to Regis' patented hydraulic flow with his optimised dystopian atmospheres and rolling bassline.
Huxley returns to Aus with a second EP, co-produced with S-Man (aka Roger Sanchez) for an anthemic, sub-heavy 4-tracker.
Dark Sky set the scene for debut album 'Imagin' with a striking pair of cuts. 'Silent Fall' introduces the pleading indie-soul vocal of Brooklyn's Grey Reverend over Kraftwerkian synth chimes and a rolling bass groove, justifiably described byt he label as "in uncharted territory between James Blake and Moderat". By contrast, 'Odyssey' is squared up for the dancers with lean, industrialized electro-bass and drums swung out somewhere between Front 242, Joy O/Boddika, and Rinse-style London jack. Smart.
Second Storey - fka Al Tourettes - sets the scene for his upcoming debut album 'Double Divide' with the dense, fizzing techno of Shaman Champagne' and corresponding remixes by Perc and Aden. Like recent examples from Untold or Randomer, Second Storey boots UK techno into more wayward new shapes here, whereas Perc takes it right back to knuckle-dragging industrial pound and Aden gives it a kinky electroid boost.
Nerve-rattling electro and cyber-punk from Travis Galloway (Traag, All Gone Records) in Siobhan mode for Opal Tapes. The title of 'Southgate' refers to a nefarious area of his home city, Michigan, and signifies a broke, rusty industrial aesthetic that creeps under the skin like crack bugs in a Philip K Dick novel. The mood is harsh and unforgiving from the sludgy trudge of 'Del Ray '97' to the Mid-West electro-tech shudder of 'Rail Spit', cutting loose on neon-lit city street scenes like some leather-clad golem brought to life by 'Citrac'-era James Ferraro and Cleveland's James Donadio aka Pro… Read more
Rinse FM dance-pop from Roska. The sweet-toothed sensations of the soulful 'Crossed Wires' with Himal, and the hi-tech- funky burner 'Master Of Persuasion' with Rachel K. Collier are offset by the red-eyed gyrations of 'Superlemonhaze' and the rugged, stuttering swing of 'Right Here'. Fun for all the fam.
Prins Thomas gets fruity with the opening tracks from Seahawks' 'Paradise Freaks' album. The Tim Burgess-starring 'Look At The Sun' is re-modelled as a sun-dazed, squelchy electro-disco burner in the Sweet Surprise Mix, and stripped to instrumental essentials on the dub. Better yet, Maria Minerva sits pretty in the lush, fleshly Full Spectrum mix and instrumental dub.
One of Sweden's most underrated synth-pop/R&B exports return with their magnum opus, 'V' on Secretly Canadian. Building on the glistening examples of their two albums and the pop diamond, 'High Summer', they return with breathtakingly spacious production recalling work by TCF or Arca and encompassing soaring vocals, windswept R&B rhythms and light-footed house, but more often left to radiate beatless within their exquisitely realised soundspsheres. However, if we've got any gripes it's the unfortunate appearance of folksy fiddles and guitar riffs, which, if replaced with practically anything else, would enhance the album hugely. Oh well, it's lovely otherwise.
"After the release of 2012’s acclaimed Circles LP, Moon Duo’s Sanae Yamada and Ripley Johnson relocated the band for the second time since its 2009 formation in San Francisco, this time from Blue River, Colorado to Portland. Yamada and Johnson had been touring extensively as a duo for the entire lifespan of the band, but they decided they wanted to try something new and add a drummer in advance of their European dates in summer 2013. That drummer ended up being John Jeffrey, who was hired sight unseen after meeting Moon Duo’s manager in Berlin.“The dynamism and flexibility that a drumme… Read more
Black Acre mark their 50th release with two cuts by Clap! Clap! fusing African percussion, electronics, and Footwork rhythms. As such, it concisely sums up Black Acre's rooted-yet-forward aesthetic, juggling febrile, effected drums, bleeps and mystic organ like Shackleton gone Soca on 'Buck', whilst the lilting thumb pianos and chants of 'Ichnusa' are much sweeter, acidic, and fragrant. Happy 50th anniversary Black Acre!
Lap steel guitarist Mike Cooper meets The Necks' pianist, Chris Abrahams on record for the 2nd time. 'Trace' was recorded in 2009, not long after the duo had released their 'Oceanic Feeling-Like' (2008) album collaboration on Room40. Again, it documents the two maverick improvisers doing what they do best, creating characteristically subtly-evolving soundscapes where Cooper's distinctive lap steel flits over Abrahams' warm, levitating beds of synth and organ drone. The session breaks down to three 20 minute parts, the first establishing a breezy tone with something "other" lurki… Read more
Irresistible Tsonga Disco House from Penny Penny circa 1994, backed with equally infectious remixes. Now 20 years old, 'Dance Khomela' works the slinkiest SA take on the US garage-house phenomenon that was burning up everywhere from New Jersey to Newcastle at the time. Taken from the amazing 'Shaka Bundu' reissue, it's now backed with the brooding bass and uptempo shake of DJ Moruti's 'Milandu Bhe', plus the inimitably tucked syncopation of Tshepang "Rambo" Ramoba's 'Aye Papa Penny', and the Black People Msanzi's remix of Ntsako's 'Xirilo'. Lot of names most people won't know here, but trust us they're all outstanding! Big TIP!
'Intercepts' is a declassified dispatch of industrial espionage and ambient adventures from the chambers of Pye Corner Audio and Alessio Natalizia aka Not Waving. Inspired by the arcane, furtive world of spy rings - from the Rosenburgs to the Cambridge Five and the Duquesne case - they present encrypted analog communiques resonating with the mystery and drama of those covert operations. Pye Corner Audio sets out a killer suite of signature, lustrous synth arpeggios and soft-soled but driving bass perfect for purring around European cities behind blacked out windows, whilst… Read more
Compiling select cuts from Danish dub techno types Kenneth Christiansen and Dennis Bøg's Pattern Repeat series. All tracks have previously appeared on vinyl and as digital downloads, but make their first appearance on CD. It's dub techno through and through, finding subtle new angles and shades in a well trodden sound. Kenneth Christiansen runs the Echocord and Echocord Color labels, Dennis does the same with Baum.
DJ Q and DJ Haus pipe up with a 2nd set of 'floor burnin' garage-house swingers. On top deck they whisk up the champagne bubble and pan pipes of 'Str8 Jugglin' and the ruder rudder of 'Eros Dance'. Below deck they shake out the kinky swing of 'All Nite' and a DJ Q remix fired up with 'ardcore breaks and a West Yorkshire rudeboy stance.
‘Out Of Reach’ has been unavailable in any official format since its original release in 1978 and is one of Can’s rarest, lesser-known albums. This is due in a large part to the fact that bassist Holger Czukay left the band and drummer Jaki Liebezeit has a reduced role, leaving most of the rhythm duties to percussionist come-lately Reebop Kwaku Baah. As on the group’s proper swansong, 1977’s ‘Saw Delight’, new bassist Rosko Gee largely leads the group, and his jazz-inflected playing is marvellous, especially on the centrepiece improvisations ‘November’ and ‘Serpentine’.
Melbourne's Mark Wundercastle serves 1080p their heaviest techno session to date with the 'Cell' EP. Six tracks take inspiration from 2nd wave Detroit techno, cyber cafes and early '00s Euro bangers, ranging from the bouncing jack of 'AC' and moodier synth streaks of 'FRDM' to the Shed/Soloaction-style breakbeat rave techno of 'Gute Zeiten' and 'NZ721'.
Percolating psych-dub stepper from Peaking Lights. Aaron Coyes juggles sprightly dub bass, piquant chords and electronic gremlins below Indra Dunis' breezy delivery, replete with a chorus you can sing-a-long to. Just don't tell the Balearic types that they're dancing to a dubstep rhythm…
Ghostly International's most emotional artist makes good with the shoe-gazing, euphoric electronica of 'Spectre', blessed with a tender, jazzy Bibio rework. The original is all heart-rending guitar chords and stadium-sized dance-rock thump, whereas Bibio's remix is dead sweet, reworking the chords on acoustic guitar with little reverse tape loops and Rhodes fills burnished with bird song and quiet, rustic drums.
Luke Slater remixes Marcel Dettmann in a trio of wicked PAS versions. 'Apron' from MDR 06 is condensed to a tripping wormhole of flickering rimshots, hypnotic bass and lip-bitingly tight hi-hats in the 'Tubed Mix 2', and properly roughed up in the Rhythm Mix. 'Rush' on the other hand, is rearranged for 'Deep Release', meaning a steady build and filtered white noise breakdowns designed to take the big rooms by hook or crook.
*Reissue on Superior Viaduct* "San Francisco's first and only rock n' roll band, Crime loomed over the entire Mabuhay Gardens scene with their blistering 1976 single "Hot Wire My Heart." Crime's loose, damaged rock n' roll was as immediate as it was controversial. They were Punk by any definition, yet shunned the label with a guttersnipe sneer. Their meticulously cultivated aesthetic of S&M graphics and police uniforms produced some of the era's most indelible imagery. One of their finest moves was playing in the San Quentin prison yard. Formed by guitarists/vocalists Johnny Strike and Fr… Read more
**Deliciously strung out twilight music for fans of Ensemble Economique** "Legendary Hearts ooze an elusive chemistry. The collusion of Andrew Cowie’s disembodied synth sensibility and Kieran Hegarty’s fluorescent liquid guitar lines result in strange medicated states not easily grasped on first pass. Their previous (and only other) recording, 2012’s Songs From The Elevator, plays a little like the softest soft-rock sieved through a porridge of melted pills: chemical, blank, alluring, indistinct. The duo’s latest psychoactive sculpture garden, Aerial View, takes inspiration from a s… Read more