Tuesday, 16 September
This week's selection parses bold, recent electronic mutations twysting traces of grime, R&B/hip hop, trance and electro-pop into beguiling, avant shapes. Exemplified in the WTF-ness of SOPHIE's incredible, divisive 'Lemonade/Hard' single for Numbers, there's a wave of bright new producers who revel in the sheer sensation of HD electronic texture and supposedly "naive" production styles. Between the pirouetting, pointillist trance optimism of Lorenzo Senni's 'Elegant, and Never Tiring', to the pandrogynous discord of The Knife, thru Mykki Blanco' camp, trap beats … Read more
Monday, 15 September
Killer, free-wheeling house and electronica ruffed up by Italian anomaly Herva. His 2nd album for Delsin builds on the febrile examples of his debut album 'Meanwhile In Madland' and that wicked hook-up with Mass Prod for Kontra-Musik, shunting and shape-shifting ruffcut blocks of sampled sound into mutant grooves and off-kilter ambient headspace. It all feels like the bastard offspring of Anthony Shakir and Aphex Twin - shifted with twitchy sleight of hand to dizzying, kaleidoscopic effect. When he's kicking it out, as on 'Slam The Laptop' or the choppy skip of 'Jingle Memo Jingle' the resul… Read more
**White label pressure** Beneath on a badder one, back from sparking up his Misty label and a wicked 12" for PAN. Packing three body-bowling riddims, his 4th No Symbols session heaves the rolling torsion and exotic, discordant alarm stabs of 'Satya Yuga' across the A-side, backed with the mystic brass motifs and shivering percussion shackled to pendulous subs on 'Internal', and a mesmerising melodica swept up with agitated sub shapes in the heads-down rollige of 'Luisa'. Wicked stuff.
*Includes Download Code Redeemable From The Label* "Peter Jefferies (This Kind of Punishment) released his brilliant sophomore album Electricity in 1994. While his solo debut, 1990’s The Last Great Challenge in a Dull World, has drawn comparisons to classic singer-songwriters like Nick Drake and Townes Van Zandt, Electricity is a far more sparse and nocturnal affair. Jefferies’ earthy baritone weaves between piano, guitar, cello and analog tape machine noise, pulling in listeners to the deep pastoral life of his music. With guest appearances from heavyweights in the New Zealand music sce… Read more
Finally, the long-awaited return of Mordant Music's shadowy industrialist, Mr Maxted. Three years since his 'Momentum' and more still since the creepy ferric EBM of 'Lives & Privacy (94-89)', his re-emergence dovetails perfectly with current underground fixations on all things wavey, magnetic and spoolly. This is proper box bedroom machine music, strafed with streaks of vocodered voices and powered by the most brittle, prodding, gridlocked rhythms and minimalist synthlines with that wicked, foil-biting tang. Ten tracks range from boogie-in-yer-Y-fronts electro-pop on 'New World Down' t… Read more
Gritty but well mannered electronica from the Erased Tapes stable. Rival Consoles in control over six tracks of fuzzily motorik groove with uplifting arrangements ranging from the kosmische flutters of 'Sonne' to the ruddy slug of '3 Chords', thru the noisier, sun-dazed elation of 'Helios', spindly spectral trance notes in 'Haunt', and lovely, chiming electronica on 'Think Tank', or at best in the free-moving geometries of 'Recovery'.
Ghetto don Marquis Hawkes continues to flirt with Dutch labels following his stack of classics for Glasgow's Dixon Avenue Basement Jams and Clone's Jack For Daze series. He's already won with the opening track's hybrid of jacking house and the spine-tingling bell synths from Origin Unknown's jungle classic, 'Valley Of The Shadows', and then gets freakier still with the purple house screw of 'Prince Among Men', plus a chewy acid jam called 'Acid Sofa', and some of dat knackered box business in 'October Blues'.
Soggy electro-techno stormers from Ekman for Trilogy Tapes following his efforts for Berceuse Heroique and Panzerkreuz. Operating in a murky brown hole between Michael Forshaw and Unit Moebius, 'Entropy' rounds out four pieces of decayed bilge pump and moody melody for the headstrong.
**180g wax mastered at D&M. Includes A4 insert** Loud and proud pressing of disco edits from committed freaks Paul Bennett aka Duster Valentine and Jamal Moss. Both players have a storied history of edits under their respective belts; Bennett with the Moxie series and Moss with his Members Only and Medusa Edits. They both bring that experience to the turntables, the former with some jazzy, jack-stepping disco business; the latter with a proper horny Chicago throwdown chocked with reverse edits.
**Previously unissued original version of a disco peach rife with steel drums, backed with freakin' wild edit by Hair Stylistics** "EM Records proudly announces a new addition to their EM Steel Pan Series, John Gibbs And The Unlimited Sound Of Steel Orchestra. They are preparing to release their fine 1977 album Steel Funk on CD/LP, and as an appetizer they will issue two 12" singles ahead of the album. "Trinidad (Disco Mix)" is a remixed version of the album track "Trinidad & Tobago," and was originally issued in 1977 as a remixed 12" single for the dance market on Gibbs'… Read more
**Previously unissued original version of a disco peach rife with steel drums, backed with Lord Echo remix** "EM Records presents a new addition to their EM Steel Pan Series from John Gibbs And The Unlimited Sound Of Steel Orchestra. In anticipation of the release of their 1977 album Steel Funk on CD/LP, EM is issuing two 12" singles ahead of the album. "J'ouvert" is a non-album track which was originally recorded and released in 1979 as a 12" single, in co-operation with legendary Philly Soul producer Louis Anthony deLise. This version is, surprisingly, a previously unis… Read more
Gnod's Tesla Tapes present the debut of Stephen Bradbury's eldritch synth unit, Black Tempest. 'Arcana' convects four solo flights powered by Vermona DRM-1 drum synthesisier into the hinterlands of classic British electronica, referencing the more convergent projections of Chris Carter or even Ian Boddy from a more lo-fi, DIY wave perspective, channelling grubby, gritted modulations and jabbing rhythms in 'The Chariot' and the intense, inward Industrial spiral of 'The Heriophant', and professing more pastoral, blissed out tastes in the cascaduing hi-frequency flutter of 'The Four Of Wands', and mystic psilocybic ritual, 'The King Of Swords'.
Kinetic, urgent techno psychedelia from Nighthammer - a close associate of Gnod, who present his debut release on their Tesla Tapes label. '30 Day Hex' harks back to Spiral Tribe-style early '90s agit-rave with hi-velocity machine pulses and hypnotic synth modulations shielding lyrics questioning "belief systems, modern culture & superficial society structures"; '85 Straight Six' runs a swaggered electro rhythm recalling the hard metallic funk and robotic romance of early Autechre, albeit with a gritty, lo-fi and rudimentary finish; 'Neu X' jabs a hollow dub techno sound tweaked with viral bleeps.
"Re -Introducing Manchester Legend .....Michael O' Neill. Gnod fans will know him from his amazing vocals on the Full Moon Ritual CDR, others will know him from The Sonar Yen, the band that spawned a hundred others in Manchester, not to mention certain key Gnodheads. Mike has always dissected & questioned belief systems, modern culture & superficial society structures in his lyrics but here he lays down the gauntlet. If this were a TV show it would be The Wire set in North Manchester. Tough sometimes overdriven production and stripped , punchy beats & basslines underpin a vocal that for… Read more
Remastered (by Matt Colton) reissue of Juan Atkins' (and Marty Bonds') sought after ambient techno gem, originally released in 1992. 'The Passage' is a classic piece of Detroit breakbeat techno science flush with celestial synth arrangements and powerful electro/breakbeat techno torque buffed up for 2014 on the A-side. Flip it for the darker techno-pop drive of 'Mind Changes' and the midnight sci-fi mission, 'Vessels In Distress'.
Punch Drunk's 'Worth The Weight Vol.2: From The Edge' documents the 2nd wave of Bristolian bass mutations in the wake of dubstep's innovative eruption in the mid-late '00s. It does so thru the prism of Peverelist's ever-evolving yet rooted tastes, cannily reflective of - and influential upon - the contours of contemporary London and Berlin dancefloor trends. Yielding cuts from Kowton, Hodge, Tessela, Kahn, Andy Mac, Zhou, Bass Clef, Ekoplekz and Peverelist on CD for the first time, it covers a broad spectrum of styles within its niche, manifesting that Bristolian thi… Read more
Brilliantly unexpected pop/house from Paul White, heralding his hugely promising album for R&S. Bolstered with a neat Andrés remix, 'Where You Gonna Go?' features White dicing with a more populist dancefloor sound to captivating effect. On the original he yokes signature palette of bright, tropical drums to a swinging 4/4 kick/bass and Jamie Woon's wounded/haunted soul vocals with the sorta class that should make this it a Radio 1 anthem. Similarly, 'Peace It Together' tempers his craftier beat skills in favour of plush, exotic instrumentation rent in gorgeous, electro-dubbed widescreen. On the remix, Andrés rolls some of his butteriest, soulful Detroit house.
Anjou is the beautifully enigmatic reunion of Labradford's Mark Nelson (Pan American) and Robert Donne with fellow Kranky star, percussionist Steven Hess. The result of four years writing and editing, it marks Donne and Nelson's first collaboration since Labradford's 'fixed:content' (2000) and the first meeting of Pan American's Nelson and Hess since 'Cloud Room, Glass Room' (2013). Now older, wiser, quieter, the trio offer a subtly involving, hazily detailed ambient suite gleaned from an intricate process of modular synthesis, Max/MSP programming and live instrumentation. Essentially it takes the t… Read more