Monday, 24 February
Make no mistake, "Solens Arc" is an IDM record through and through. There are certainly some nice bits here, but the overall feeling it left us with was an odd kind of nostalgia for an era we had presumed long forgotten in electronic music. The sound seems in-thrall to Chiastic Slide era Autechre, and even on moments that seem more directly aimed at the floor such as "Evento" or "Blank Empire" there's an odd kind of retro-active choice of palette that seems at odds with the futuristic, minimal aesthetic that's typified Raster Noton all these years.
South American-born Parisian Valentino Mora returns with a tough and convulsive take on dance music with this long awaited 13 track album for ClekClekBoom. Named after the NASA vessel currently in orbit (which itself is named in honour of seminal Astronomer Johannes Kepler), the album builds on the sound made popular by 2012's "Yo Vogue" fusing elements of House, Ghettotech and Electro nicely over-compressed for maximum impact. Highlights include the Levon Vincent aping "Change The Past" and the Millsian 'K62' featuring compatriot and labelmate Bambounou.
One of the most interesting producers in Grime, Mr. Mitch returns with another knockout drop for his own Gobstopper label. The productions here are largely about space and pressure, a reduced/fwd Grime template that retains an odd, melancholy heart. It makes for a mighty EP from a genuinely inimitable producer that just gets more interesting with every release. Highly recommended!
Two decorated rave dons partner up for a heavyweight rolige session. Mumdance arrives off the back of the best material in his arsenal, namely his collaborations with Logos and that 'It's Peak' madness for UTTU, whilst Pinch continues to find his groove in the 130bpm/bass zone. Up top, their 'Turbo Mitzi' is potent as the title suggests, oscillating waves of darkside synth bliss with cold, skin-prickling electro-bass and duppied rave gasps to take over the dance. Dung there, 'Whiplash' is a more rugged beast synching dynamic whipcracks with crunching construction yard samples, bass surges and brilliant, daring use of near-silence in the anti-drops. Recommended.
The new class of House music remix tracks from Nosaj Thing's 'Home' album for Innovative Leisure. Kyle Hall treats 'Try' to a luxuriant deep house massage rubbed with greazy bass and warm, woozy synth washes. Gerry Read deftly refracts 'Light #3' into a Shake-like blend of brittle, swinging drums and wormy bassline building to a crooked outcome of grumblin' drums and old-skool, Manix-like synths 'n strings.
"Unknown To The Unknown present a new 4 track club EP from New York's Willie Burns. By day a swimming instructor & record buyer at the world famous thrift store The Thing. By night he can be found in his studio in Greenpoint surrounded by a collection of analogue hardware that make up his alias’ Speculator, Black Deer & of course his SP1200 aided Willie Burns. Having released numerous EPs on L.I.E.S, The Trilogy Tapes, Rush Hour & Crème Organisation he’s turned in 4 spectacular hazy low slung house jams for Unknown To The Unknown..."
Nochexxx follows his debut album with the more accessible electro-funk freak beats of 'Thrusters' on Ramp. Working in space between Legowelt's sonic fictions and the skronky avant-dance music of NYC's Gobby, Nochexxx is on a wild dancefloor tip, bowling between body-rattling uptempo electro-techno, weird-ass electronica, spiralling acid, ghetto-tech and dotty synth dérives that sound like they were written with an infected sequencer. Good stuff.
Fabric 74 is in the safe hands of Dave Moufang aka Move D for a cherry-picked 15 tracks selection spanning House music vintage and up-to-the-minute. As you probably all well know by now, Move D is a one of the most cultishly adored European Deep House DJs and electronic producers in the world. Since the early '90s he's amassed a massive stockpile of eclectic releases on his own Source label, based in historic Heidelberg, South West Germany, including 26 albums with the late ambient music pioneer, Pete Namlook, beside countless other collaborations and solo productions strafing the lines b… Read more
Sweet cosmic disco house from Bristol's Komon & Appleblim team for Will Saul's Aus Music. A-side 'Jupiter' oscillates between strutting disco and sub-loaded house swagger with ace kosmiche dub intervals produced, by the sounds of it, on Roland's legendary Jupiter synth. Flipside they pick up the pace with a nifty techno-house number named 'Glimmer', and roll out into classic-sounding Broken beat and dub chord styles with the techy closer 'Beach Trek'.
Pangaea, Karenn and Objekt remix Jon Hopkins' 'Collider'. Cut from Hopkins' widely acclaimed 'Immunity' album, the posh trance thud of 'Collider' is ruffed up and taken to a darker corner of the club by each participant. Pangaea gives it a crushing swing-techno overhaul mauled with abrasive noise whilst retaining a vital trace of the original's proggy lift. Blawan and Pariah's Karenn duo opt for a darker, pounding techno overhaul powered by thuggish kicks and laced with an EBM synthline. Objekt does his crafty IDM thing with intricate, polymetric syncopations and fractal electronics.
"Neneh Cherry releases her first solo album in 16 years – a collaboration with RocketNumberNine, produced by Four Tet, and featuring a guest appearance by Robyn. While her energy and demeanor may not have changed since the days of Rip Rig + Panic, Blank Project is a departure from anything Neneh has previously done, initially written as a means of working through personal tragedy. What stands out upon first listen is the album’s sparseness: loose drums and a few synthesizers are the only accompaniment to Neneh’s wildly poetic, sometimes-spoken, sometimes-screeching, soul-flooded and ra… Read more
'Churches Schools and Guns' is the 2nd album of dystopian, forward-facing techno architecture by Italian-in-Berlin producer, Luca Mortellaro aka Lucy. The follow-up to his well-received 'Wordplay For Working Bees' is an obliquely abstract yet emotive twelve song cycle exhibiting an ear for microscopic detail and an attuned feel for slinky, seductive rhythms. It's leagues ahead of his field of terms of sound design and atmosphere, drawing on and subtly incorporating a wider confluence of ideas than many of his contemporaries. The grey, gloomy spectre of machine driven post-punk expe… Read more
After a bit of a break the Silverback label returns with this solid 7-track EP from Piri Piri, including reworks from Visonist, Neana, Jean Nipon and Matthias Zimmermann. The original tracks float between Tropical and industrial Techno on the opener "Peak" and clunky electro on "Ice Cream", so it's left to Visionist's typically canny refix to elevate proceedings with a nicely toughened quasi-Grime stepper, while Neana re-shapes 'Quest' into a highly effective percussive banger complete with fxxcked vocals and sharp, industrial drums.
"Developed over a four year period, and entirely funded by a part time job working as a SAT university entrance exam mathematics tutor, Nº2 was composed using synthesizers and a variety of unidentiﬁed samples that were manipulated beyond recognition. Christina Vantzou then collaborated with Minna Choi of the San Francisco based Magik*Magik Orchestra. Vantzou and Choi worked on the notation and arrangements and recorded the compositions with a 15-piece ensemble at Tiny Telephone studios in San Francisco. The chamber layer on Nº2 follows a similar pattern as her ﬁrst record with the addition… Read more
London's highly-rated club-night serves the 2nd soundtrack to their very own club catwalk shows. Resident deejay Rushmore manhandles four cuts fusing flyest elements of prancin' ballroom and bashy B-more with a booty-wise UK grime sensibility, switching it up from the Eski-optimised ghetto-bass bounce of 'Bloodlines' to the haunted warehouse flex of 'Jump Shot' and over to the stabbin' c*nty behaviour of 'Turn It On', the sub-loaded flamboyance of 'Bitch Please', and the digitally exclusive cut 'Ignite'. RIYL Deamonds, Night Slugs, Dance Mania, jackin', showin' off.
*New on Nicolas Jaar's 'Other People' label* "Several years ago, Valentin Stip was sitting alone by a harbour in the small French town where his parents grew up. “I heard all the sailing strings hit the masts, and I realized that every sound you hear is potentially music,” he says. “The only thing that makes sound into music is the mind, arranging it.” Since then, Valentin Stip has been building a bridge between the sounds that live inside and outside his head. On ‘Sigh’, the 21-year-old producer’s full-length debut on Other People, Stip organizes classical piano, lightly sputtering grooves an… Read more
**Upfront Exclusive** Shuffling, toughened, gnarly Techno from Qoso on In Pardisium, following up that excellent split EP with Low Jack from last year. If you're into AnD, Mondkopf etc this one should do nicely for you.
Following on from that amazing reissue of "Half Dead Ganja Music" on Spencer Clark's Pacific City Sound Visions label, Cut Chemist puts together this incredible compilation from 1980’s French post punk, industrial, minimal collective Vox Populi!,. Cut Chemist discovered their material in 2004 while on tour/record digging in Milan where he picked up a compilation featuring their track “Megamix”. Originally released in the 80s, the track was not rooted in disco, hip hop & DJ history but rather post punk and industrial influences. The rudimentary “scratching” pre… Read more
"Present Tense is a dramatically new album – taking cues from the most intense and effervescent of 1980s and 1990s electronic sound but rethinking and retooling these elements with exquisite detail for the 21st century. Longer in creation than any of its predecessors, Hayden Thorpe, Tom Fleming, Chris Talbot and Ben Little took almost a full year away from touring to conceive and construct the eleven tracks of Present Tense. Written in London and recorded at Konk Studios in London and at The Distillery in Bath, the band worked in close collaboration with co-producers Lexxx and Brian Eno… Read more
“Formed originally as a jam-based project in the ever-fertile analogue studio 'Green Door’, Whilst jump seamlessly between free jazz, primitive electronics, dubby post-punk, North African and motorik stlyings, underpinning their sound with a strong punk ethos“.
Wesley Matsell returns from his Studio Barnhus excursion to the merry gang at Border Community. On 'Total Order Of Being' it sounds like he found some vintage Garys left over from Castlemorton along the way, yielding four tracks of ecstatic, utopian dance music clearly in thrall to the halcyon aura of early '90s rave. The percolating synths and arpeggiated bass of the title track offer a lush slingback to classic Orbital, and the colourful, frothing breaks of 'Future Beacon' brims with the kind of positive brio best associated with early AFX and the Rephlex gang. The Wales-vi… Read more
Proper unusual signing from Lex here, Wertheimer bring together an intriguing mix of squashed electronics, boogie and House that sound like a cross between Andy Stott, Matthew Herbert and Leila, with a closing hook that bizarrely sounds like it could have been lifted off Baauer's 'Harlem Shake'. It''ll take a couple of listens to get our heads round it, but there's enough here to pique our interst, for sure.
Soul Jazz Records new release Inner City Beat! Detective Themes, Spy Music and Imaginary Thrillers is a unique CD (and 2LP) release that comes with an exclusive limited-edition specially created 60-page graphic novel (by the mysterious cult 1960s pulp-fiction writer Mark ‘Badly’ Antringham). The music on the album is a killer selection of funky, deep, rare, exciting and dancefloor heavyweight ‘spy themes’, ‘detective music’ and thrillers from the 1960s and 1970s. The music spans heavyweight break-beat funk, deep and heavy jazz, sup… Read more
The Notwist return with their first album in 6 years, 'Close to The Glass'. "The Notwist have always been pioneering their own sound, walking a trail of songs across genres toward something definitively new and distinctly them. Yet the German born band are never running ‘from’ their previous creations rather ‘toward’ the next, and in doing so have crafted a series of personal yet impeccable records that warmly thread together the far corners of independent music. Simply speaking, the Notwist make this careful and banging, private yet pop, post-everything music, for the movie going … Read more
Outta nowhere, former Skam/Warp regular Simon Pyke aka Freeform presents a 20 minute extended version of the soundtrack to the installation 'Universal Everything & You - Drawing In Motion' currently showing at Media Space, Science Museum, London. It feels very much in key with his Skam releases from the early '00s, sequencing ornate, folk-wise, organic and electronic instrumentation into 20 minutes of lilting, percussive grooves which become progressively noisier and more discombobulated.