Monday, 25 August
Hot on the heels of his lovely 'King Bromliad' 12", Floating Points deals another one-sided treat for the DJs and dancers. 'Sparkling Controversy' has all the hallmarks of a sterling F.P. joint - cone-caressing subs, dusted drums and effervescent keys - given nuff room to slyde and rub up the slinkiest sorta dancefloor friction.
From hooded Wegie scamp to world-taking producer, Rustie continues to blaze a neon trail with his crackshot 2nd album, 'Green Language'. Packing all the stomach-churning, heart-bursting rush of a triple-barrelled mitsi, it's a dancefloor melding, accelerationist expression of emotions that can't be adequately summed up in the English lexicon, amped with guest vocals by D Double E, Redinho, Danny Brown and Gorgeous Children. It scales up the thizz attacks of 'Glass Swords' to impossibly ecstatic levels with his signature blend of tiered harmonies, crashing trap dynamics and traces of jaw-br… Read more
Masterful modular techno poundings from the Brummie techno boss - his first proper Token release following a remix of Grovskopa's 'Sex and Violins' in 2008. Both cuts are recognisably Surgeon productions, but perhaps not instantly so due to his new palette of modular synths. The original 'Fixed Action Pattern' galvanises signature shuffle and bruising kicks with a bristling, chaotic noise energy that's a thrilling new addition to his sound, whilst the aquatic Dub carves the groove to a solemn halfstep lurch steeped in sepulchral groans and consumed by oncoming waves of masticated electricity. It's a real burner.
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
Neo-no wave agitator $hit & $hine dumps a killer funk load on Powell's Diagonal Records, hard on the heels of 2014 madness from the label boss, plus Russell Haswell and Bronze Teeth. 'Powder Horn''s wiry, banjoed skronk marks Craig Clouse aka $&$'s 1st new album since 'Jream Baby Jream' and that split slab with Gnod back in 2012. Poised between rambunctious clatter and clipped, in-the-pocket groove, nine tracks fling-a-body from the virile strut of 'Astro's Hat' to the burned-out Pump styles of 'Spray Bottle', taking in the rollicking jag of 'Bingo' and the nitrous-fuelled breakbeat torsi… Read more
*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
Proper bass excitement from Addison Groove featuring a serious footwork soul joint with the late DJ Rashad. Gwan ruffer than his recent album, 'Dat Ass' boots up flashing Chic stabs and killah strings inna pumping Miami Electro mutation, whereas 'Push It' hooks up happy hardcore/jungle samples on a pneumatic footwork bass and 'Masamune' flexes out with forward '97 D&B styles nodding to Source Direct or Photek with a mnml 2014 stance. Best of all is the uncannily titled 'U Been Gone' with Chicago's recently deceased footwork pioneer, DJ Rashad, in flux between Dilla-style soul sample chops, junglist breaks and manic bass cadence. Big shotta!
Blown-out lo-fi house and techno patter from Oakland, CA's Worker Parasite, new on Opal Tapes.
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.
Dank darkside industro-dubs from Italy's Violetpoison - one half of the Violetshaped duo with Shapednoise. This has to be his most diverse yet coherent statement to date in this guise, from the captivating display of voltage control in 'Gabbia Di Faraday' thru some massively killer industrial disco romps in the searing arpeggiations of 'Lisergico' and the Autechrian convolutions of 'Run', to Silent Servant-like 115bpm sleaze in 'The Key' and 'Sovrastrutture'. Definitely the best of Opal Tapes' latest batch - purported to be their last for a little while. Hope this one makes it to vinyl… Recommended!
Nimble, dreamy remixes from LoVil (Ricardo Villalobos and Max Loderbauer) and the Booma Collective's Oren Ratowsky & Solpara. The LoVil version of 'Pendule' is surely one of the best (of many) remixes in recent memory from the venerable Berliners, squashing the groove to a seductively sticky pulp swarmed with old skool early '90s ambient pads inna 2014 hi-tech jazz style. Ratowsky & Solpara's remix is pedestrian by comparison, but useful for dreamier tech-house times.
Utterly enchanting, joyfully whimsical return from Portland, Oregon's acoustic/ambient-pop hypnotist, Sean Byrne aka Bugskull. Returning to Digitalis a half decade on from the much-loved 'Communication' album, his sound on 'Collapsed View' is mostly as charmingly concise and somnambulant as we remember, but also offers three slightly extended views where he really takes flight. The A-side yields five sun-dried ambient pickings, moseying from woozy harmonica, organ and acoustic guitar strums cuddled to tape in 'Heaven/California', thru the smudged dirge of 'Olde Growth', to hazily ramshac… 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'.
"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
"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
**Uniquely unpredictable and utterly captivating solo guitar suite by a Bhutan native currently residing in North Carolina, USA, released by Ben Chasny's Hermit Hut. RIYL Derek Bailey, John Zorn, Six Organs of Admittance. Includes download code** "Tashi Dorji grew up in Bhutan, on the eastern side of the Himalayas. Access to any music created outside the country is limited, as are most cultural options, given the geologically isolation of the country. How Dorji went from a life so remote to developing his innovative and revelatory guitar style is mind-boggling. Yearning for access to the… Read more
"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
"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
Proceeding a string of releases for Tesla Tapes, Luke Calzonetti's Run Dust arrives on Opal Tapes with the rusted cyber-punk session, 'Zeckenentferner'. He appears have a firmer control over his gear here, from the dystopian sci-fi projections of 'Grade Crossing' thru the clipped percussive articulations of 'Jazz Can' and the frayed, maddening loops of 'Full Slice' to the awkward angles of 'Face Fein' and turgid techno of 'Just So You Know I Do'.
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
A pair of lush, sultry deep house grooves taken from Ron Trent's follow-up LP to 'Raw Footage'. No quick fixes here, taking all the time he needs to really cast his spell.
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'.
Super stylish, wavy disco/house, Frankfurt style, from Lennard Poschmann aka Orson Wells on his 2nd 12" for Live at Robert Johnson. In possession of the sharpest rimshots we've heard in ages - we're big rimshot fans o'er here - the four tracks of 'Open Light' feel timelessly fresh and effective. 'Drifting' does just that with sparkling synth arpeggios and kinkiest rimshot patter set to a suave 112bpm swing, and the gorgeous 'Sky Traffic' tickles slinkier cowbells and floating chords with a poetic flourish recalling vintage analords and Italian techno moments. 'It Takes Two To Tango' hinge… 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'.
Downwards' gloomiest duo summon the spirits of Coil and Cocteau Twins on this compelling sophomore 12". Like Teutonic cousins to Blackest Ever Black's Dalhous, Oake channel wide ranging influences from film, literature and esoteric musics to create texturally rich and evocative arrangements which don't necessarily sit well in any pre-ordained genre. Their 2nd outing is a bleak call to like-minded souls, using worm-charming subsonic pulses and banking wails on 'Sehtohree Diin Chromtas Vehns' to seduce both techno heads and goths, whilst 'Tuturden Giit Chreteen Dwe' displays an increasingly vis… Read more