Monday, 22 March 2010
Very large tech house tracks from C2 and Glimpse on Planet E. Carl Craig crafts another flawless techno building block with his remix of Glimpse's 'Drifting' on the A-side, honing the original into a sleek and toned burner with everything in the right place yet still keping an edge of Detroit funk and ambition. Glimpse's original is a primped tech houser reminiscent of their stylish efforts on Leftroom and their own Glimpse recordings but advancing into universal big room playability. Highly effective.
Fonky fresh house music from Ostgut label head Nick Hoppner backed with a remix from Lee Jones. Hoppner's 'Brush Me Down' starts the dance with a perpetual tech-house swing cushioned by cool bass surges and delicate key placements, which Jones embellishes with a dubbier sound sphere and and a broken house rhythm construction. Meanwhile, on 'Umbrella Pitch' Hoppner moves deeper into the night with hovering strings holding a sublime tension while 'Dancing On The Head Of A Pin' contracts to a lush and luxuriant lather of deep house for a beautiful moment of dancefloor introspection. Great EP, check!
The king and queen of Norwegian noise, Maja Ratkje (known for her work as a solo composer as well as an improviser in Spunk and Fe-Mail) and Lasse Marhaug (of Jazkamer/Jazzkammer fame) return with the fourth installment in their Music For... series. As with the prior releases in this ongoing collaboration the emphasis is on slapstick plunderphonics as much as it is visceral, explosive noise. The overall effect is uncommonly jubilant, making for an oddly light and carnivalesque alternative to the usual industrial bleakness that's synonymous with noise music. There's still pl… Read more
More groundbreaking industrial electronics from underground legend Maurizio Bianchi, dating back to 1983
An arresting selection of vintage avant-garde music by American composer Philip Corner, who's probably best known for his Fluxus associations. These three long-form pieces concentrate on metallic sonorities, adopting a kind of Western modernist reading of what the term 'gamelan' represents. "'Gamelan' is the name of the first piece. In 1975 at Livingston College where Barbara Banary, who had just constructed the earliest instruments for Son Of Lion, invited Philip Corner to compose a piece. Its opening gong stroke and long resonance has gone through several revivals … Read more
A beautiful 20-minute suite from the prolific German composer Asmus Tietchens, who fashions the entire set of recordings from the sounds of paper. This music was originally devised for release in the 1990s via the Syntactic label, though only two of these tracks made it out onto 7". A further two tracks were cued up for a 7" that never materialised, and the fifth piece compiled here is derived from experiments with the same source material. This aspect of Tietchens work is more physical and textured than the sort of steely, precise work that came to characterise his Mengen se… Read more
An exceptional selection of Charlemagne Palestine music dating back to 1974, this Alga Marghen edition presents previously unavailable recordings that feature such luminaries of the American avant-garde as Tony Conrad, Rhys Chatham, Terry Jennings and Robert Feldman. "'Short & Sweet' is the title of a breathtaking duo for piano and sax performed on April 24th by Charlemagne Palestine and Terry Jennings. The two composers happened to play together in very private concerts at Cal Arts, but never recorded those sessions, until a special day when Charlemagne happened to have… Read more
Named after everyone's favourite giant marauding turtle, Hexstatic's new single, 'Gammera', finds the Ninja Tune favourites in muscular break-chopping mode, channelling some hefty dubstep-style bass undulations. Remixes come from George Lenton (who drops some skanking downbeat sections into the track) and Akira Kiteshi, whose contribution makes for an impressive piece of sliced and diced dubstep flamboyance.
Incredible vintage electronics from 1984, originally released as a private press edition of 300 copies. "This record is the soundtrack for a film with the same title, produced and directed by Maurizio Bianchi. For obscure reasons, the original LP remained unavailable for a long time, and was distributed only 1 year after it was printed. Moreover, most of the copies were destroyed. Less than 100 actually exist. This was MB's last vinyl production, and also the only one featuring recordings of the artist's voice. It was made during a period of huge change in MB's life."
The fourth release in Rafael Toral's Space Program series and the second in its Space Elements sub-section, this new album by Rafael Toral finds the electronic composer combining with a new team of collaborators,most notably the great saxophonist Evan Parker, who fronts a rather large team of instrumentalists, manning brass, cello, percussion, guitar, vibraphone and synthesizer. Meanwhile, Toral himself sculpts sound with modified amplifiers, oscillators and feedback signals. The character of this music is incredibly tricky to pinpoint, and Toral's work seems to take inspirat… Read more
Tigerbeat6 drop the crunktonix from dDamage featuring Young Jeezy, Agallah and Sin backed with remixes from HumanLeft, Kid606, Komori and Magnum 38. dDamage tightens up his splatter-hop style with 'The Truth' setting an itchy double-timed riddim flecked with gunshots and bursting synthline excesses for ghetto-ready vocals while his 'Can Of Worms' hollers with a punky electro attitude. For the remix session Kid606 screws the vocals of 'The Truth' while resetting the riddim for an unsteady 'ardcore jukin' version while Komori chops up an IDM mix and and Magnum 38 gives 'Can Of Worms' a lumpy electro hardcore overhaul.
Still wringing their debut album for all its single potential, Girls deliver 'Morning Light' on 7", which is another fine example of this band's punky distillations. In fact, while the likes of 'Lust For Life' and 'Laura' sounded all knockabout and archly retro 'Morning Light' feels somehow more serious and emotive with its pummelling powerchords and oddly wistful, distorted production.
Don't be fooled by the Beatrix Potter-baiting band name, this San Francisco duo are cut from the same mold as arch doom-mongers Earth, purveying glacially paced gothic stoner rock that draws plenty of parallels with Dylan Carson and co. circa Hex. Throughout, there's the distinct feeling of a version of Americana gone wrong. Skeletal electric guitars intone with a tentative, death-knell twang at the beginnings of pieces before accumulating a more fully formed state of dread by the end. You can hear trace elements of the blues in 'Procession Of Golden Bones' and there's even a bit of acousti… Read more
Originally issued in a tiny run of 100 copies, this debut from guitar magician Scott Wells comes housed in a distinctly home-made looking sleeve, with a unique, hand-painted watercolour insert housed in each copy. Root Strata make mention of Day Songs as showing up on their doorstep from out of nowhere a few months back, which is probably as fitting an introduction to this mysterious suite of guitar pieces as any. Occupying a tantalising 20 minutes of hushed loveliness this four-part work just seems to waft in from the ether, introducing itself with a glow of metallic resonance and weightle… Read more
Sleaze-edged Euro-dance/Italo from Dance Disorder to follow up their anthemic 'My Time' from 2009 - which was remixed for inclusion on Radioslave's Fabric 48 mix . Throbbing bass arpeggiations, over-the-shoulder vocals and surging synthlines are the order of the day, barely breaking a sweat but maintaining crowd control like an stern German cop with a look you wouldn't f*ck with. The instrumental drops the vocals, and there's a full dubcapella for those into ambient sleaze, or the DJs.
This is the second album from Norwegian band Serena Maneesh, following an acclaimed debut, released in 2006. The band have since found a new home as part of the 4AD family, which seems like as apt a label as any to house the band's output given its long history of championing underground rock. That idea is taken to its illogical conclusion with this album: in what sounds conspicuously like an apocryphal rock yarn, the group are said to have recorded the album in a cave. Far from whatever troglodyte imagery that press release nugget conjures the album certainly doesn't fee… Read more
Melodramatic Italo disco from IDIB and Bar Funk's William Bottin. 'Galli' is image-perfect italo-pop featuring all the slow throbbing bass, slick guitar chops and arcing synthlines you need. 'Piazza Venezia' follows with a more cosmic roller featuring tidy conga percussion, synth stabs and well-studied bass guitar.
Colourfully branded the "Wagner of disco" by the press release, Vitalic returns with a new single to be lifted from his Flashmob album. 'Second Lives' is massive, anthemic stuff, compressing a ridiculous amount of fizzing synth circuitry into a superb electro-disco format. It's fairly telling that the remixes tend not to deviate to far from the original's melodic essence, and however big and brash it may seem, there's really no getting around how effective 'Second Lives' is. The Mustang reinterpretation is probably the most successful remix of all, injecting a little Italo kn… Read more
Stimming gives two insistent tech-house remixes of Georg Levin's 'Falling Masonry'. He provides Levin's originals with a sophisticated slow-burning build with a swooning string-lead mid-section included in vocal and instrumental versions.
Cardopusher delivers one of his better releases for On The Edge with three tracks of deeper dubstep electronica. The most impressive is 'Schematic Blocks', using droning synth pads and clipped garage rhythms to create a lush atmosphere reminding of Synkro on valium, while 'It's Yesterday Already' drops the tempo and ups the groove to a 130bpm garage drift before the ethereal 'Taken For A Ride' reminds of Narcossist or Indigo's take on dub-techy steppers. Lovely stuff.
Mark Archer (ex-Altern-8) shapes up the next installment of the Balkan Vinyl series, including tracks from Debasser, Paul Blackford, Echaskech and Hack The Tab plus remixes from Posthuman and Snapmouth. Debasser goes for the uptempo spooked-out electro vibe, Echaskech goes for acid driven 4/4 electro, Hack The Tab return with a killer acid techno track and Posthuman do a Flat Beat style workout on Debasser's 'Beyond Perversion', probably the best thing here. Ace.
Solitary Nail is a trio recording featuring Lasse Marhaug, John Hegre and Jean-Philippe Gross, who originally released this as the January volume in Jazkamer's monthly CD series for 2010. This is improvised noise of the very highest order, dubbed to analog tape at Bergen's Duper studios in ear-flooding high fidelity. The opening few minutes arrives as a scrap-metal gargling deluge, clanging through passages of beautifully textured carnage that's a real joy to behold. The onslaught shifts gear later on for some extended tonal workouts that shape droning signals out of unstable feedback. … Read more