Monday, 25 May
We find Wolfgang Voigt in his natural habitat amidst the sweeping, Gas-like ambient scenery of 'Rückverzauberung 10'. Written to commemorate the opening of German national park, Hunsrück-Hochwald, where the piece is played through loudspeakers to enchant the woodland and vice-versa, it gracefully unfurls just over an hour of deep forested strings and quietly intoxicating atonality in a reflection of the the wild, rolling landscape and its natural topography. From the elegiac appeal to the woodland cover art, it's arguably the closest you'll come to Voigt's templa… Read more
Luke Abbott coins his Buffalo Temple label with the cracked serenity of 'Music For A Landscape'. His 3rd album, an original soundtrack to 'The Goob', also doubles up as a canny lead-on from 'Wysing Forest' (2014), pursuing that LP's sonic psychogeographic themes from Cambridgeshire to his home ends in Norfolk, also the location for filming of 'The Goob'. Incorporating richly scenic field recordings of insects provided by Chris Watson and Anna Bertmark (to be clear, they provided the sounds, not the insects), the albums gently unfolds with t… Read more
Skee Mask slings a 2nd lot of crackshot techno on Ilian Tape with the 'Junt' EP. His 1st release, 'Serum', issued in late 2014, injected a much-needed dose of broken, sparky and rude funk to the techno scene, and this one does much the same, with an added swell of blistered, psychedelic noise texture and shots of sweetened melody for good measure. The title track kicks up a cloud of dusty atmospheres and dub-sprung dynamics to ease us in, before 'Hover' almost loses its mind in a roil of atonal apparitions, to be rescued by rolling groove and sweeping, sunken pads. 'Larus Canus' follows at a more… Read more
The London/Bristol axis churns up a military grade bomb from Mumdance, Pinch and Riko Dan. 'Big Slug' holds tight to a dread UK sound, all city-at-night gloom licked with apocalyptic intro and cantering bashment groove streaked by hellish metallic apparitions and Riko's yardie bark. The instrumental 'Lucid Dreaming' opens more hyperreal weightless dimensions framed by pendulous roto-rimshots and desiccated bass hits closer to gabber than grime but with the discipline of modern minimalism, anticipating a tangible evil that never comes but constantly lurks at the periphery, like some sort of sublime panic attack - summing up the vibe of 'ardcore UK dancefloors. Tip!
**Heinrich Mueller's 2004 sonic treatise on the state of technology and its dystopian social application still rings true today, if not more than ever** The first album proper from Heinrich Mueller as Der Zyklus, who's best known for his releases as Dopplereffekt, Arpanet, Japanese Telecom, Elektroids and more. The legend returns with new sound experiments from the Dataphysixs sound laboratories - a collection of abstract interpretations that veer from BBC Radiophonic Workshop experiments in sound design and effect processing (all with a biological theme), to the supremely kill… Read more
*White Vinyl Edition* 2nd LP of ear-worming electronic-pop from Becoming Real - a strong tip for those missing Holy Other or Tri Angle's bewitched pop aesthetics. Between 2010 and 2012 Becoming Real was behind a string of smart releases for the likes of Ramp, Moshi Moshi and GETME!, and then… nothing until 2015. With 'Pure Apparition' he reminds us what we have (or might have) been missing with 12 tracks of eldritch-tinted pop deviation soused in dreamy melodies and stranger electronic tones given impetus by strong yet deft dancefloor impulses. Dunno if it's just us but it seems li… Read more
Stephen O'Malley's Ideologic Organ presents an expression of survival in the face of extinction with When's elaborate concrète tribute to The Black Death, or Svartedauen, which wiped out two-thirds of the Norwegian population within a few years after 1349 AD. Prompted by a series of grim drawings on the subject by Theodor Kittelson - one of Norway's most renowned artists, who is also responsible for a number of classic Burzum album artworks - 'The Black Death' was, perhaps understandably, a firm favourite with Norway's burgeoning Black Metal scene upon release in the summer of 1992, offerin… Read more
Swanky, diverse new Dial compilation featuring exclusive material from all your deep, techy and ambient house faves. This has to be the most far-flung suite we've heard fromt he Hamburg-based label, unravelling a fine spectrum of coherant styles between Christian Naujocks' poignant opener, 'For A While' and Dawn Mok's R&B abstraction, 'Like Thoughts Or Moments We'll Fall' via the simmering, airborne deep house of Lawrence's 'Chex Dupont', drifting shoegaze-pop from Pawel, Physical Therapy's skewed junglism, and the posh trancey luft of DJ Richard's 'Zero'.
Special request for Regis and Fis remixes of Akkord from Houndstooth. Last spotted on 'HTH035', these two sympathetic mixes correspond with the original's bloodied and brutalist sound design, with Fis absorbing and infusing a conflagration of 'Gravure' and 'Continuum' with rolling, windswept ambient motifs and turbulent hydro-electric charge reflecting the semi-industrial, semi-pastoral landscape of the 'Hayfield To New Mills' trip, whereas Regis carves the same cuts into a lurching, monolithic techno-stepper disciplined with the cranky Whip Hand of a maniacal Mill overse'er.
'Fridge Trax Plus' compiles Editions Mego's pivotal first ever release with the successive 'Live and Final Fridge' to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the label's existence. Back in 1995, along with the output of Warp and Sähkö, these trax marked a bold progression of electronic music towards the convergence of dance music dynamics and experimental abstraction, paving the way for a whole generation of artists to follow in their wake. Transforming recordings made inside a fridge into humming ambient drones, swarming noise clusters and sparking techno pulses, they're genuinely… Read more
*New from Root Strata - a huge recommendation if you're into Pye Corner Audio, John Carpenter or early Depeche Mode* Perfectly realised homage to OG '80s VHS library music from Jared Blum as VisionHeat. Root Strata had the pleasure of picking out 19 pieces for 'The Chosen Themes - Program I', ranging from hi-NRG adrenalizers to ominous 'ludes and swanky electro-disco showcasing Blum's remarkable breadth of styles and a carefully assembled aesthetic wisely nodding to the likes of Carpenter/Howarth, Goblin's Claudio Simonetti, Klaus Schulze, Harold Faltemeyer and those othe… Read more
Bass Clef does his bright and melodic modular dance thing for Belfast's Rudimentary Records. 'Humming Blurs' sprawls the A-side with chiming, avian synth tones ruffled by stuttered and collapsing techno-dubbed drum chicanery for the IDM sweetboys and girls.On the other side, 'Chanson Du Ricochet' charges up a freakish, sputtering sort of alien techno deviation wrapped in shredded ribbons of salty modular scree and amorphous noise.
Expertly selected compilation of blindspot gems from the 'Worldwide New-Wave, Post-Punk and Industrial Underground 1978-1984' picked up and spat out by London's venerated Cherrystones. A killer compilation for both the insatiable digger and curious psych-o-naut alike, it starts at the fringe and moves every farther outwards via the sort of selections that only come from decades of paper cut cuticles and breathing in decayed cardboard in mildewed basements and record shops. From an unfamiliar t… Read more
Zed Bias takes the safety off his Madd Again! project with Specialist Moss, Killa Benz and Trigga for the 3rd release on Manchester's Swing Ting label (ov the eponymous clubnight). Bashment is the flava, served on the bone with body-burning heat in three courses. The rugged heft of 'Badmindself' runs dancehall voodoo with auto-tuned vox laced to glute-shaking subs and crunching industrial drums, before 'Beg Nar Fren' starts up nice 'n sweet and turns nasty with airhorns, 'ardcore hi-hat shake and gully bass. Best of all, though, is 'Duggu', bringing fwd an acidic tang and bouncing soca d… Read more
Truss churns out three chunks of industrial techno grot for Perc Trax. His first release in this guise since 2012, 'Kymin Lea' does rusted electro rhythms and bleached-sky pads across the A-side, with a surprisingly sentimental tenderness to be found in his steely structures, whereas flipside, 'Clawdd D' trades in beligerant, discordant UK techno, and 'Wyefield' gets off on a spooked South Western techno bang à la Polygon Window.
Feathered soul from Throwing Shade, with breathy vox by Emily Bee. "Her second EP ‘Fate Xclusive’ effortlessly covers ground between seductive downbeat pop (lead single ’Honeytrap’, vocalled by Emily Bee), pulsing club (‘4eva Fate’) and contemporary leftfield electronic music (‘Mirror’). All bear the rainbow fingerprints of her signature kaleidoscopic production style. The EP release sees her poised to build on a busy last 18 months and reach a wider audience. October 2013 saw her debut release – ‘Mystic Places’ – on Kassem Mosse’s Ominira imprint. In May 2014 she released the ’19 J… Read more
Arch techno-conceptualist Thomas Brinkmann presents his most intriguing solo outing yet with the abstract sound structures of 'What You Hear (Is What You Hear)' for Editions Mego. In an attempt to detach himself and his art from any concrete descriptors and also camouflage the intent behind these tracks, Brinkmann offers a greyscale of electronic fundamentals largely devoid of his patented minimalist rhythm trickery or discernible melody, allowing the music to do the talking and make us poor sods work harder to describe what he's doing. Thing is, he just kinda gav… Read more
Thore Pfeiffer makes his maiden voyage on Kompakt's Pop Ambient artist album series. Hand-picked for the job by Wolfgang Voigt (a.k.a. Gas etc.), Pfeiffer's 'Im Blickfeld' follows Leandro Fresca's inaugural edition with a feather-light moire of panning pads and quiet ambient thought bubbles owing much to the original Pop Ambient aesthetic whilst also gently refreshing its now well-established memes. Rather than any grand, layered statements, Pfeiffer exhales wispy chords and airborne chimes in a smoky mesh of tones and phrases, forging intangible structures somewhere between the elus… Read more
Champagne-soaked UK dance music from TRC and Princess Nyah on the one and only Crazylegs. The original's a big vocal showpiece with Nyah's vocal gilded by shiny '80s synth chrome and 2-step shuffle, with a couple of Todd Edwards-style chops for slick measure. DJ Q's remix resets it to a bouncing bassline-house flex with gear-shifting bass and 4/4 meter bringing fwd that Todd Edwards vibe.
"Saved & Sanctified: Songs of the Jade Label The rawest, DIY gospel ever resurrected. The West Side of Chicago was just an annex of the deep rural South for Gene Autry Cash and his flock of recent Old Dominion transplants looking to cut their fiery, unadorned sounds indelibly to plastic. His Jade label absorbed those God-fearing artists: family bands with wailing kids and barely amateur groups sourced from local parishes, infused with reverberations of country and western and deep soul. Glinting authenticity shines from every track like a diamond in the unpolished rough—each group completely convinced that salvation comes through song."
"While legions of artists show fidelity to psychedelia's roots, Unknown Mortal Orchestra has always shared the rare quality that makes the genre's legends vital, a constant need for exploration. Last year, frontman and multi-instrumentalist Ruban Nielson descended into his home studio in a Portland basement to chart out where's he traveled since his last set of unhinged psych-soul ballads. He discovered that the best way for him to move forward would be to look back. Where Nielson addressed the pain of being alone on II, Multi-Love takes on the complications of being together."
"The Eccentronic Research Council’s fabulous fourth album, ‘Johnny Rocket, Narcissist & Music Machine… I’m Your Biggest Fan’ is written from the persuasive point of view of an obsessional fan of a (fictional?) local band - The Moonlandingz, who gig around the (fictional?) South Yorkshire district of Valhalla Dale. The album also sees The Eccentronic Research Council team up with Lias Saoudi and Saul Adamczewski of South London’s The Fat White Family, who ably play the role of The Moonlandingz."
**Submerse bruks out and footworks rhythms at his lofty apartment in Tokyo** "Taking in the smooth silky feeling and textures of 90’s Slow Jams and R&B music videos, ‘Stay Home’ converts these into submerse’s unique style of beats. Aiming to work as the soundtrack to urban scenes of life, whether you’re roaming the city streets at night or by just staying home and capturing these moments from a window. ‘Stay Home’ also ventures into footwork rhythms on a few occasions. While his first EP’s and his recently released debut album ‘Slow Waves’ dealt with nostalgia and exploring the city life of Tokyo, submerse has finally found a place to stay and call home."
Steve Rachmad rides the rhythm for Luke Slater's Mote Evolver. Four tracky cuts, at best in the molten metallic funk of 'Stroke 1' and a sparking jack attack, 'Stroke 4'.
Legowelt and hirsute pal bang the box on a 2nd Seaside Houz Boys session. You get four patented hardware rubs, ranging from adrenalized panic to vintage faces Drums style and the electroid winner 'Deepness of X70002'.
Warp set off their 2nd showcase of killer new dance music from Lisbon's Príncipe crew. Up top, you'll find the mystic flutes and streaking synths of Alto Nivel Produções' low slung tarraxinha, 'Directamente', next to the slamming-but-slinky drums and jagged, SND-like chords of Nidia Minaj's 'Pra Fechar', and DJ Maboku's slow and super wide remix of 'Tarraxo Electrico' by DJ Lilocox ov CDM. Flipside, we're introduced to Puto Anderson & Deejay Ninoo with the kinky, woody drum syncopation of 'Camarate' at a mean slow flex, and, likewsie, we hear from DJ Big Vado and DJ Estra… Read more