Monday, 31 October 2011
Hugely promising Bristol-based producer Vessel follows the success of his solo debut for Left Blank with five for A Future Without (home to early aces by Throwing Snow and Kahn!). Operating somewhere to the left of the whole future boogie posse, these tracks are closer to recent Modern Love or Leaving Records takes on squashed funk and cracked electronics, from the blunted aquatic swing of 'Wax Dance' through the Zomby-style, Thriller-esque 'James Dean' and the oxygen depleted funk of 'Blowback' or 'Cuba'. Fans of Andy Stott or Matthewdavid need to check in.
Dan Snaith (Caribou) delivers another ace Daphni track, this one for Amazing Sounds Records and backed with a remix by Margot. 'Ahora' moves away from the more African themes of his edits for Resista and Jiaolong, working with a slinky, oriental melody and effortlessly bumping House rhythm certain to hypnotise susceptible dancefloors. Remixing, Border Community's Italian duo, Margot invert and unzip the original to reveal a stranger sort of dubbed-out 4th world House groover.
Heavy 12” transmission on Raster Noton from Jens Messel following his mighty Pong LP of last year – and that album’s ascetic, decidedly North European response to dubstep’s low end theories. Though Tweek is a homage to the perennially anxious, hyperactive South Park character Tweek Tweak (honestly), the music is anything but jittery – rather it’s a cool, controlled bass offensive, admittedly shot through with the requisite paranoia. The icily delayed drums, pinched chords and oscillating subs suggest Digital Mystikz re-tooled to soundtrack Tarkovsky’s Stalker, while the eerie synths and spurts of n… Read more
Prolific producer James Clements aka ASC reaches into his hard drive circa 2009 for the 'Archival:01 EX.EP'. Technically speaking, it's not an LP, but longer than an EP, checking a range of intricate IDM/D&B hybrids constructed with his signature dexterity. Our highlights have to be the swooping, subs-driven 'Entelechy', the Hi-Tech ruffige of 'The Alchemist', 'Spillway's mercurial rhythmic flux or the A.I. rave emotions of 'Neon', but we think his fans will will be mad for them all.
New cut from Mike Huckaby, produced for inclusion on his new 20 Years of Tresor mix. These days Huckaby is probably best known for his deeper house tracks and his long-standing jazz obsession (thrillingly evinced on his recent Sun Ra edits), but he has deep roots in, and a skilful command of, harder techno in the Tresor style. His mix features Rob Hood, Surgeon, Joey Beltram, Jeff Mills and the rest, and his own 'The Tresor Track' is more than tough and driving enough to be in such company. It's still pretty dubby - the influence (conscious or otherwise) of BC/Chain Reaction is palp… Read more
The heirs apparent to the dark, instrumental Hip Hop throne drop a heavyweight album of sampledelic beat works. Fair to say, chunky drum breaks aren't exactly fashionable right now, but when they're done with the same kind of dirt and integrity as Parallel Thought they're still kinda hard to ignore. Not since the heyday of DJ Shadow or the highpoints of Sixtoo have overdriven, MPC-carved drums sounded this crushing and cinematic, and with the lack of titular references or even background info on the project, the emphasis is really placed on the narrative power of well d… Read more
Following an acclaimed debut album, Aeroplane uses his renowned selection skills to illuminate twelve up-and-coming artists on 'In Flight Entertainment'. Replete with a continuous mix version and an exclusive Aeroplane cut, Vito De Luca draws for a high standard of modern, rolling Balearic and Euro disco, from the breezy mid-tempo sway of Poolside's 'Take Me Home' thru the glam cosmic throb of Bxentric's 'Foolishness' and onto the wiggly rut of Stars On 33, Kolombo's rippling arpeggios and RipTide's peacockish powerjacker 'Sophie'.
Dekorder plunge us into Neil Campbell's amazing Astral Social Club headspace with this cracking new LP, marking a welcome return to the label after his stellar Ibiis Rooge album with High Wolf. In case you're not aware of his output, Neil is maybe best known for his work with legendary British drone/DIY psych bands Sunroof! and Vibracathedral Orchestra, but flying solo he's forged a truly remarkable style of psychedelic avant-techno which sounds like nobody else out there. From the outset of 'Generator' we can hear him literally untethering his rock connections as the cyclica… Read more
Bryan Black - half of French neo-EBM duo Motor - drops the uncompromised chug of 'Engine 1' backed with Unsubscribe (Dave Clarke and Mr Jones) and Brian Sanhaji remixes. Original is pure weight-lifting music, reeks of sweat and protein. Sanhaji's remixes are alternately muted and building / darkly groovesome. But, no doubt about it, the Unsubscribe remix is the peaktime choice, coming with spartan hollers and pure, pummelling bass for the dancefloor Adonis inside you.
East Coast Bass star comes to Ikonika & Optimum's Hum + Buzz with three uniquely crooked originals, plus a strong Mike Q refix. Following Dro Carey's 'Candy Red' ace, Brenmar keeps the label's aesthetic firmly forward-looking with the ornate R&Bass hybrid 'Let's Pretend', while 'Temperature Rising' locks on a sort of liquid steppin' R&D&B fusion, for 'Done (Don't Luv Me No More)' to run out the Footwork flex. In the remixer seat, East Coast Ballroom queen Mike Q gives a sub-powered revision, interestingly easing off the classic MAW samples to great effect, without losing the haughty dyna… Read more
Kuduro figureheads deliver their 2nd full length album, a flawlessly hi-end session of rugged, Afro-futurist dance and pop music. it's a guest-heavy outing, including contributions from Mixhell, Stereotyp, Afrikan Boy, Sara Tavares, Terry Lynn and Roses Gabor riding sleek but instinctively ruffneck riddims. Initial highlights have to be the Funky-compatible organs and martial beat of the title track, through the Trance-infected pop of 'Voodoo Love' which could easily pass for a current Geeneus production, to the Dutch-styled slyde of 'Tira O Pe', the sub-wielding tribalism of 'Vem Curtir… Read more
Offbeat electronics with well-appointed remixes from Ekoplekz and Detroit's Andres. After emerging earlier this year with a well received EP for Pictures Music, Kato has quickly established a robust, intricate sound hovering somewhere between the likes of Loops Haunt and Lorn. The remixers are possibly more intriguing, though. A-side Ekoplekz turns 'Usual Drama' into a dub-spooked hall of mirrors sounding like it could have come from a smoked out Schnitzler session at Conny Plank's in '73, while Slum Village producer Andres gets all experimental with a dry, slompy remix of 'Low Rises' on the flip.
Deep 'n deadly Berliner versions of tracks from Deadbeat's latest album, leading with a smart remix by Scuba of his own SCB edit (keep up at the back) of 'First Quarter'. This cut seems to complete Paul Rose's conversion from dubstepper to out-and-out techno producer; for all the creepy FX and spatial manipulation going on, this bangers boils down to its tough, unrelenting 4/4 kick and bassline moulded for maximum Berghain impact. Efdemin delivers a Workshop-style, armour-plated deep house take on 'Cala's House'; tender and tough all at the same time, its oily bassline and clipped chords conspire to create a compressed funk that we're powerless to resist.
**Upfront Exclusive** Part one in a series of 4 Ann Aimee EPs offering diverse and solid Techno from respected producers. Hi-strength Techno is on the bill, Delta Funktionen serving a blinder with the alabaster 4/4 sculpture of 'Torpor', and Peter Van Hoesen pounding out the unrelenting tattoo 'Last One At 1080'. Flipside, Roman Lindau bring the funk in that motor-greazy Fachwerk style with tight, offset syncopation and abrasive synth strikes next to a churning beast from Sawlin. Crucial platter for the players!
Chestplate CEO, DJ Distance delivers his most substantial release since 2008s 'Repercussions'; four tracks of hi-grade darkside dubstep. Chomping at the bit, his first plate ploughs out the much-anticipated bassbin punisher 'Meanstreak' and the lurching Neuro-funk inversion 'Mind Control'. Second plate, still steaming 'Drawn' drags a fetid halfstep carcass over jagged riffage and 'Knowing' puts the sleeper hold on with oversized drums and snarling bass in the widest sound-sphere possible. A big must for the Youngsta heads!
Doldrums is the moniker of Canadian bedroom producer Eric Woodhead, and somehow he makes slippery experimental pop without falling into the ‘chillwave’ genre at all. Maybe it’s down to his choice of samples (often sounding like they’ve been hovered up from a collection of charity shop LPs) or the discordant nature of the songs themselves; these are not your chirpy Washed Out pastiches, rather ‘Empire Sound’ showcases a more melancholy sound than you might be expecting. The usual comparisons to Animal Collective and Atlas Sound ring true, to a point – but I can also hear Dum Dum Girls in the… Read more
Even Tuell returns to Musik Krause following his Ian Simmonds remix. His 'Hula Vortex EP' contains three stripped down, smudged and ethereal House tracks; the trippy, hypnotic ace 'Mental Marathon', the dirtier, STL-style grind of 'Close Dancin', and the primal, muggy jack of 'Planet Ape (Raw Mix)'. Workshop heads; your time!
Brittle 2-step swing from the Funk Ethics & Lucid Directions alliance, backed by Von D's warmer, rolling remix. The original's a neat piece of fractured, minimalist steppers' soul, kinda from that same vein as Koreless, James Blake or Joy O - all sparing rhythms and fluid vibe convections. The remix fleshes it out for the dance with expanding subbass shapes and more rugged rhythm programming to drive dem bones.
Unique minimalist Tech-House sound designs from the increasingly on-point Gerry Read for Ramp's Fourth Wave offshoot. With 'We Are' Read slips somewhere between the texturhythms of Matthew Herbert or Farben and the low-slung swing of Joy O and Theo Parrish, all simulated surfaces and speaker-pushing bass shapes with a real crispy shake. Flipside with 'Narry' the Herbert analogue is clearly apparent on a nudged, looping House groove with bags of augmented soul flavour.
Collecting six years' worth of commissioned pieces for installations, theatre and compilations, Double Exposure is Janek Schaefer at his best. There's a generosity of spirit to Schaefer's work; he's a sound artist who chooses to communicate directly through melody and atmosphere, rather than obsfuscate through conceptualisation, and that really comes across here: from the gentle, crackle-wreathed telling of 'Broadstairs Childrens Piano Trio' to the droning high drama of 'Crossed Wires', via the magnificent 'Inner Space Memorial [for JG Ballard]' and ''Requiem for West Wittering', which hang stately and water-logged in the air like GAS.
Bristol's purple prince drops his long, long-awaited debut album on 4AD. From the off, his aim is to put his trademark orgiastic synths and low-slung G-funk drums in the service of pure pop, aided and abetted vocals from the likes of Jessie Ware, Jay Wilcox and Silas. There's a welcome outing for past single and party wobbler par excellence 'Tron', but for the most part this is all-new material. Swaggering instrumentals like 'Milky Way' and 'My Trance Girl' hark back to the road-crushing heyday of 'Gully Brook Lane', while 'Back In The Days' and 'Lost' plot an even path through grime and spangly… Read more
The jazzy Germans return on this new LP with a slightly more upbeat sound thanks to the inclusion of lilting female vocals. While this might shock those of you looking for jazz’s darker realms, it adds a humanity to Kammerflimmer’s motoric sound, and a refreshing lightness to the proceedings. The band are still focused on the cinematic, with deep subtle electronic textures and blues-drenched guitar lines that sound like they’ve emerged straight from the bayou, but ‘Teufelskamin’ finds them experimenting with pop music and coming out on top.
*With liner notes by Dave Katz* Honest Jon's reissue Lee Scratch Perry's 1980 masterpiece, the final record made at the Black Ark studio before its ultimate demise. Appearing after his equally seminal series of 'Super Ape', 'War In A Babylon', 'Police And Thieves' and 'Return Of The Super Ape' LPs, it finds Perry during a turbulent period - his Black Ark compound has been occupied by occult Rasta factions, his wife has left him and nobody comes to visit any more - but the music within is evidently some of the greatest he ever made. It opens with the eleven minute … Read more
There's something irrefutably synergetic about the music these two musicians are making, and after countless releases - both as a solo artist and as a collaborator - Rutger Zuydervelt might have found his ideal foil in clarinetist Gareth Davis. The timbral mixture these two concoct is an alchemic blend of elegant guitar drones, crackling, uninterpretable field recordings and cawing reeds. At times Davis' contrabass playing brings to mind the avant-garde, self-distorting trumpet style of Arve Henriksen; at once lyrical and unnatural, but a resoundingly unique voice nonethel… Read more
100% take it down town with four tracks of flaunting, French-style filter House from Jason Letkiewicz (Steve Summers/Innergaze). The mid-90s spirit of Thomas Bangaltar, Dimitri From Paris or DJ Sneak is crossed with the raw EQ'ing of Jamal Moss' Members Only series for a proper knob-tweaking session bound to have mascara dripping and chest hairs glistening. A-side 'Broken Anthem' and 'Run For Cover' are boundless energy boosters, looping and bucking with a near-psychedelic delirium, whereas the the flipside 'Sunsets' and 'Fatal Games' are slightly more iced and groovesome, with that ineffable sense of silky elan.