Monday, 31 March
Achingly fragile, sublime folksong from Tokyo's Ai Aso - an occasional collaborator with Boris, and White Heaven members You Ishihara and Michio Kurihara. Somewhat of an about-turn for Stephen O'Malley's notoriously heavy Ideologic Organ label, 'Lone' showcases Ai's exquisite, "whisper-thin acid folk" voice in a live setting at Daikanyama UNIT, Tokyo 3rd November 2012. Her performance is nothing short of captivating, accompanied by keyboard and guitar, she glides sylph like thru a suite of seven songs, each seemingly on the verge of evaporation yet delivered with an unwavering confidence that's almos… Read more
'Codiaeum Variegatum' is Anne Guthrie's quietly striking solo debut opus seamlessly blending field recordings and instrumental composition into beguiling new forms. With elemental alchemy and incredible sensitivity to the smallest, most unique sounds and textures, the Brooklyn-based composer and sound artist parses multiple dimensions of room and field recordings of French horn, violoncello and contrabass into truly captivating interzones bristling with microscopic detail and quiet, curious energy. Thanks to canny use of extended microphone placement - most likely stemming from h… Read more
'Psychic 9-5 Club' is the nigh-on flawless 3rd album from HTRK - quite easily their most ambitious and rewarding outing yet. In contrast with the affective weight and morbid pallor of their 'Work (Work, Work)' LP - which was constructed as a duo after band-member Sean Stewart tragically died halfway through recording, this new suite finds space for a sliver of reflective light epitomised by the pathos of Jonnine Standish's vocals and Nigel Yang's deft, spaciously dub-wise production. There's still that sense of grief and dysphoria, but it feels like they've come, or are coming to terms wit… Read more
Constructed from material recorded between 1987 and 2013, 'Bauteile' is an intensely detailed electronic study constructed by two veterans of the German electronic scene. It's one of the freakiest emissions we've heard from either producer, a fractal melee of avant-electronic funk and gyroscopic sound design culminating their extensive research in all areas of contemporary music. The piece plays thru as an unbroken, 70-minute wormhole of sorts, effectively spanning two centuries of musical development in a mind-bending chicane of psycho-acoustic trickery and advanced processes.
Phillip Sollmann aka Efdemin returns to Dial for his third album of sleek, purring deep techno and house. Under this guise, Sollmann has more or less defined soulful German take on house and techno with a string of albums and acclaimed singles pursuing the aesthetics of '90s Detroit and Chicago thru a prism of Cologne and Berlin-styled minimalism. The result is an intimately detailed sound, driven by twin engines Motor City alchemy and Euro-dynamik sound design to "express the paradoxical relationship between beauty and decay." Recording mostly took place in his Berlin-Wedding studio, The Meadow, a… Read more
Florian Hecker's latest major work for Editions Mego investigates the serrated schism of nature and culture through a further focus on the unique timbral properties of the voice and our perceptions of language. "Articulação deepens Hecker’s collaboration with Reza Negarestani, author of the libretto created for Hinge . In two distinct renderings this piece articulates a complex scene in which the two obelisks of the script - one from the perspective of nature and one from the perspective of culture - are recited simultaneously in an informational yet dramatic style. Hinge* features the legenda… Read more
Donato Dozzy and Neel's Voices From The Lake drop the best release yet on The Bunker New York. Befitting of the club/label's dark, purist techno aesthetic, their three cuts chart unfathomably deep, fluid minimal techno zones, swimming between the womb-like systolic sub pulses, siren chorales and silty pads of 'Velo di Maya' to the turbulent, stormy roil of 'Sentiero' and concluding with a prime example of their live practice - the best showcase of their attunted style - with an eight minute live edit of 'Respiro' unfolding patiently hypnotic bass modulations and rising crests of harmonic noise with a lushly meditative poise.
Butterz Royal-T and Flava-D set the levels to fruity UK garage house on their debut collaboration. 'On My Mind' bubbles up classic Korg M1 bass notes, zipping purple riffs and slinky swing for the big people; B-side brings a ruder, bassline-driven Version 2, and a lush, airborne 2-step Version 3.
Two years after the excellent 'DIN' LP, former Pit Er Pat player FAY Davis-Jeffers returns with a bolder, even more arresting sound on 'Deathwatch', again released by California's Time No Place label. Anchored by wilfully, cannily off-the-grid grooves, we hear a more sultry and warped FAY this time out, much to our satisfaction. Nine tracks twyst and wriggle between the clattering, itchy funk of 'C.a.y.a' to the lo-slung post-punk bass riffing and swaggered sensuality of 'Sex Hats' thru the collapsing industro-dub rhythms of 'Can't Fall' to tumbling, extra-tropical syncopation and synth discord in… Read more
'A Series Of Shocks' collates the latest house and techno research from Tobias Freund's Non Standard studio. It appears three years since his debut solo album, 'Leaning Over Backwards' on Ostgut Ton, and a year since his latest outings with longtime collaborator Atom ™. There's eight tracks in total, delving deep into a classically stripped down, powerful club sound characteristic of *that* Berghain/P'bar vibe. We're really feeling the darkside breakbeat house Wild Pitch vibes of 'If' and the rolling techno aerobics of 'Ya Po', and its 'Heartbeat' inversion, but also the cavernous daft o'clock techno minimalism of 'The Scheme Of Things'.
Huntleys + Palmers swiftly followi their brilliant Drumtalk 10" with a fine introduction to four new artists - "no B-sides here!". Styles spread out between Kwaito-infected deep house of Cruffy's 'Subculture' - we guessing a nod to his home city, Glasgow's Sub Club institution - plus a kinky, whipsmart acid jack called 'Pamela Two' from Argentina's Carisma, the twirling chords of Proxymore's clinically demented 'Ministry Of Silly Talks', and an infectious, bustling Afro-house swinger from Prophets Of The South entitled 'District 6'.
Total holy grail techno business from Detroit's Erik Travis, reissued by Frustrated Funk. 'Programming' collects four rare-as-fxxk electro-techno peaches by one of Detroit's original booty-techno producers - including the skipping funk of 'Programming', the darker techno-pop instrumental of 'Joy One Mile', a mind-blowing 'Techno World' and the deranged funk of 'This Is My Beat'. U-N-M-I-S-S-A-B-L-E!
Reissued from the cold, two classic Heinrich Mueller (Dopplereffekt) productions taken off 'Der Zyklus II' (2001). 'Elektronisches Zeitecho' spills serpentine arpeggios and timeless Drexciyan melodies on a the A-side, and 'Mathematische Modelle' makes robotic doe eyes at Kraftwerk on the B-side. Unmissable stuff.
*Extended Digital Edition* 'Music for Stocking Top, Swing and Staircase' is a spellbinding archival discovery documenting a performance by one of the missing links in experimental electronic and prototypical industrial music. John Lacey is one of the background players in British electronic music and conceptual performance art. He was an early collaborator with Chris Carter and Cosey Fanni Tutti and a crucial member of COUM Transmissions alongside Throbbing Gristle's Genesis P-Orridge. Lacey contributed technical direction … Read more
Probably our favourite release on RVNG Intl comes from metal duo Lee Buford and Chip King aka The Body produced by Bobby Krlic aka The Haxan Cloak for their crushing 4th album, 'I Shall Die Here'. Abetted by Krlic's visceral production, The Body sound more fearsome and physical than ever before, shaping a series of tracks which only seem to get more intense and nightmarish as the trip takes hold. From the funereal trudge of opener 'To Carry the Seeds of Death Within Me' we pass through successive stages revealed like some hemlock-induced hallucination, from the eschatological resignatio… Read more
Four-way face-off from Osiris' hand-picked yung-guns. Killawatt opens with a roiling techno-stepper and Ipman twists out a proper sound-system test loaded with cone-crumpling sub pulses and dive-bombing dread synthlines. Kryptic Minds' own Simon Shreeve debuts his Mønic alias with a bleak as f**k dubstep techno vortex, and Metrist cuts out an undulating piece of noise techno chicanery.
Skip-master DJ Q deals in pure UK dancefloor pop on debut album 'Ineffable' for Tom Lea's Local Action label. Since the early 2000's the Huddersfield-based DJ has been central to the UK garage scene with a massive catalogue of original productions, remixes and not least for his DJ duties at Radio 1 Xtra and countless clubs across the country. For his debut album proper - following nuff compilations and mix CDs - he channels the classic vibes of Todd Edwards and MJ Cole with rugged touches of UK grime and a filtered French disco touch, accompanied by radio-and-club-friendly vocals from a select pos… Read more
*Epic three and a half hour digital edition with bonus content* At long last, Echospace's CV313 project, 'Dimensional Space' finally sees the light of day, packing one disc of original material backed with extensive revisions from Steve Hitchell and Rod Modell themselves, plus additional reworks by King MIdas Sound, BVDub, The Sight Below, and Reference. So the story goes, the original masters recorded 1996-2010 were submerged underwater due to a flood in the duo's home studio, with many reels never recovered. The ones they did manage to salvage have been painstakingly rest… Read more
The xx producer strikes solo with 'Sleep Sound'. Imagine Four Tet meets Panda Bear and you've got the gist of 'Sleep Sound' - a seductive melange of harmonised, cut-up vocals, bubbling UK garage house and warmest pop undercurrents to tickle the cockles.
Forward hypeR&Boogie heat from the chief Night Slug and the hottest vocalist on the block. Following their debut collaboration 'Guns & Synths' which opened the acclaimed 'Cut 4 Me' mixtape, Bok Bok kit's Kelela with a Jam City-styled, Eski-reduced diffusion of Linn snare crack and sparking funk guitar chops held tense against those honeyed vocal flits and gasps. So good!
Total aces from the improvising, No Wave percussion/electronics duo Morton J Olsen and Rubén Patiño aka NMO on Barcelona's crucial Anòmia label. Operating somewhere between Powell's technoid incisions and Russell Haswell's freestyle freakouts, the duo's 2nd EP - following the cracking 'Dominant Akkord' cassette - yields four cuts of militant, awkward electro-acoustic funk bowling between the deranged reggaeton cyberpunk of 'Full Spectrum Dominance' and the robo-bogling 'Parasomething' to a swaggering No Wave banger named 'Dirty Huts' and the tense, roiling snares and fre… Read more
"It is important to remember that sound is ultimately a physical medium. Vibrations, emitted through the airwaves collide with surfaces, reflecting and inflecting in a blissfully chaotic interplay before finding their way to our ear drums. It’s here, in this space of reflection, that Simon James Phillips has created Chair. It’s an album of clustered piano works, where notes compound and flutter in a spiraling flow of attack and decay. Using the natural sustain of both his chosen instrument and the recording environment - the Grunewald Church in Berlin - Phillips’ playing draws out the … Read more
A welcome and typically beguiling return from Finland's Merja Kokkonen aka Islaja, who's now dropped the freakier folk elements in favour of trippier, modern art-pop and minimal wave. Four years since we last heard from her on Fonal with 'Keraaminen Pää', and in the Hertta Lussu Ässä trio for De Stijl, it would appear she's had a radical revision of her sound now stalking ground somewhere between Björk and Maria Minerva, yet without any concession to her strikingly unique, oneiric sound. You could possibly attribute her palette shift to the input of Heidi Mortenson, who co-produced and mixed the alb… Read more
Smarter Tech-House party trax from UK scene stalwart Tom Demac. On his return to Aus, following the 'It Grow Again' EP with Will Samson, Demac displays his craftiest side with the canny transitions between bassbin-rocking house, mad folk string dischord and vintage samples (anyone care to let us know what it's from?), on the surefire 'Linda's Theme', whilst flipside deals the deft tech-house shunt and strafing vocoder wail of 'Vodocoder's Revenge', and the rugged yet supple swing of 'Days With Poly' for the dancers.
"Phon.o´s new E.P. continues his quest into the deeper zones of club music. Combining influences from UK House, Garage and Berlin Techno he manages to further define his very own sound. Featuring guest appearances from malaysian duo Bass Sekolah on the hymnic 'Here now' and additional keyboards from San Franciscan mastermind Joshua Kit Clayton on the more introverted 'Moonwalk', this record has a strong narrative that manages to work on the dancefloor as well as on the home stereo. Or, simply speaking: for the girls and the boys. The 50WEAPONS035 is intimately tied to the forthcoming #… Read more
Kowton, Bonobo and Dark Sky remix MJC's 2011 tech-house roller. We'd recommend heading straight for Kowton's rugged, spaced-out reduction for scuzziest thrills.
Pumpin' analogue techno ravers from Landstrumm and Optimo's Keith McIvor in Doubleheart mode, including a jam with the ubiquitous Ralph Cumbers aka Bass Clef. Landstrumm's confessional 'I Trade My Ass For Drugs' confides a jackin' New York House-meets-UK rave sound, and Doubleheart's 'Tetse' tucks into a reggaeton-meets Bleep Techno sound. Maddest of all is 'Ode To Passive Souls' from Landstrumm, Cumbers and Operator, riding gnarzy triplet techno swagger and discoid bleeps to the darkroom.
**Includes excellent reimxes by the Cyclist and OOBE** "Cleaning Tapes 5th release comes as a 6 track collaborative EP from Norwell and S Olbricht (Opal Tapes, Farbwechsel), Mastered by Opal Tapes' Stephen Bishop featuring remixes by OOBE (Opal Tapes,) M. Buckley and The Cyclist (Leaving Records/Stone Throw.) With artwork by Studio Hopt."
**Churning techno for fans of Lucy, Eomac, Lakker** "Touchin’ Bass takes a different turn this time by introducing you to newcomers MKFN, a live production project formed in 2012 by Babar Raza (US), Ovais Hassan (UK) and Fahad Ahmad (Canada). Over the course of the year they have designed a system that allows them to create music across borders that has been defined as experimental, dark and gritty. The collective integrates each member’s extensive musical background gained from working across multiple genres. This unique combination invites distinctive sounds into the studio forming the founda… Read more