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Thursday, 05 March
Two years since 'Splazsh' topped a stack of annual polls, Actress presents his 3rd, and most coherent album, 'R.I.P' - his 2nd for Honest Jon's. Despite being a vital cog in the machinery of underground UK dance and electronics since at least 2004 (when he released his 'No Tricks' debut), it's fair to say that it's only in the last few years he's made the shift from cult concern to acknowledged auteur of some repute. His work with Damon Albarn's DRC Music, beside a legendary DJ set at Sonar and killer remixes of Shangaan Electro, Panda Bear and Radiohead all certify the fact; so expectations are no dou… Read more
**Gatefold vinyl** Adam Wiltzie (Stars Of The Lid) and Dustin O'Halloran reprise their acclaimed strings and keys duo, A Winged Victory For The Sullen, with 'Atomos I - XII' for Erased Tapes. We can safely report that it's every bit as gorgeous as their eponymous debut, but you probably already got the hint from their teaser 12", 'Atomos VII' which landed earlier this year backed with a fearsome Ben Frost re-interpretation. The further XI parts sweep us to the most picturesque modern classical panoramas imaginable...
Wednesday, 04 March
*Repress* Marquis Hawkes back on Dixon Basement Jams with a special house session for y'all. This cat's releases just get better and better: his 4th 12" roves the 'floor between carnival-inspired acid strut on 'Honey Kisses' to the groove-riding piano house of 'Let's Do It' thru the wiggly jak trak 'House IS My Castle' and onto the pièce de résistance of Linn snare crack, slicing boogie licks and magical pads in 'Roger Funk'.
**Mindblowing electronic productions and songcraft from Africa-via-Paris circa 1975-1982!** Cameroonian musician and cultural polymath Francis Bebey is a bona fide legend of 20th century African music, art and literature. He introduced the world at large to Manu Dibango and had a stack of hits in the French-speaking African world, but it's his little known work with electronic keyboards, organs and drum machines which is staggeringly revealed here. Across 14 tracks, Francis cooks up a minimal but richly layered and heady concoction of frothy, improvised melodies, body… Read more
J&J’s last album 'Techno Primitivism’ totally floored us here, finding a sweet spot between elements of dub, jazz and psychedelia within a tactile house and techno framework. This new album - 'Clean-Cut’ - left us a bit cold on first listen, taking a much straighter approach feeding off classic Detroit and swung Chicago styles, but in the space of a couple of listens it has completely earwormed its way deep into our heads and refused to let go. From that off-ish pan-pipe hook on the killer title track to the red-lining drums on "Wheeze Please”, the production details and exotic flourishes ba… Read more
**Gatefold jacket. Colour inners** Juan Atkins delivers his 1st Model 500 album since 1999 with 'Digital Solution'. Aided by a live band including UR's Mike Banks, Mark Taylor and Milton Baldwin, they swerve to a classic sort of Detroit techno funk, with the emphasis mostly on classic styles, but also tucked with some straight-up signature electro belters. The funky bits tread a fine line between dope ('Electric Night' or 'Standing In Tomorrow') and eye-watering ('Hi NRG', the dubstep-styled 'Encounter') while the club joints do wit like only Juan and the clan can, at best in the supple,… Read more
It seems like fate that these two titans of the new electronic music revolution should join hands on a split release, and leave it to NNA Tapes to make that happen. Often mentioned in the same sentence, Dan Lopatin and Jeff Witscher have long had a thread linking their sounds, and while they may have both wandered from the synth music template a while ago, their styles complement each other better than ever here. Lopatin's side finds the artist in a defiant mode, pulling acerbic chattering voices from public service announcements a… Read more
Anthony Child presents his first solo album - outside of his work as Surgeon. As with his turn-of-the-millenium drops on Downwards and FatCat, ('Boys, School Showers & Swimming Pools'; splits with Jansky Noise and Stock, Hausen & Walkman), he uses his birth name to denote his non-dancefloor and texture-based experiments, as he explains that this record "...consists of location recordings, tonal experiments, and thought-forms from many different positions in space and time. It is the sound of the space between people and things." Using a palette of source mate… Read more
Wolf Eyes' Nate Young synthesises the sound of your primordial nightmares on the fifth 'Regression' session, 'Blinding Confusion'. In communion with the netherworld via detuned modules, tapes and percussion, Young operates at a such a sluggish pace that notions of deja entendu and EVP feel so much more valid, and all-too-real as he takes your beta-state to a point hovering just around the sub-conscious. Sweetly soured, off-key organ chords seep in with opener 'Forever Day', slowly dilating time and space, opening fine neural gateways for the high frequency scree of 'When Noth… Read more
*Red vinyl pressing with fold-out poster - a first time vinyl release of this iconic release with new artwork by iconic artist Graham Humphreys. This record will not be re-pressed* "Death Waltz Recording and One Way Static Records have joined forces to bring you the score to a truly iconic – or notorious – classic of the horror genre: Riz Ortolani’s music to the one and only Cannibal Holocaust, directed by Ruggero Deodato. One of the early “found footage” films, this 1980 picture takes you into the heart of the Amazon rainforest as we see the lengths a film crew will go to get their … Read more
None hotter right now: UK's Moleskin drops his hugely anticipated solo debut proper on Goon Club Allstars - the label home to Mssingno. Heavily influenced by UK and US club sounds, namely Eski Grime, Baltimore Bass, and that hyper-funked Night Slugs aesthetic, Moleskin builds on the reputation of his Wiley edits and 'Burst' ace for Keysound with four up-to-the-second zingers cutting from brassy B-More bang on 'We Been Ready' and the percolating club fizz of 'Clemency', thru to the outrageously effective future funk flair of 'Turnt On' and the bouncing technoid bomb, 'Chips'. Mad tip for all fans of Jam City, Bok Bok, Her Records!
"Laurel Halo returns to album format after two critically acclaimed EPs with the driving, meditative 'Chance Of Rain'. Evolving from earlier works, it's a cerebral exploration of the intersection between rhythmic and ambient music, drawing together moments of movement and stillness, psychedelia and presence of mind. On 'Chance Of Rain', rhythms melt with unpredictable structures, ambient drift and deep harmonic passages, while keyboard-based interludes reinforce both the far-out and contemplative aspects of the record as a whole. Halo's evolution as a live performer has directed her music'… Read more
**Glow In The Dark Green Vinyl** "Afrika Bambaataa & Soul Sonic Force “Planet Rock” 12-inch re-issue on glow-in-the-dark vinyl (Limited edition of 1982 copies) B-Boy anthem from 1982 lights up any dancefloor…literally!"
**Includes digital download code redeemable from the label** 'Xen' sets a definitive new apex for 24 y.o. Venezuelan artist Alejandro Ghersi aka Arca following his pivotal production roles on two of the most important hip hop/R&B albums in recent memory; Kanye's 'Yeezus' and FKA Twigs 'EP2' & 'LP1' - plus production work on Bjork;s next album still to come. Suitably housed among the roster of electronic legends on Mute, it's a nimble leap forward from last year's incredible '&&&&&' mixtape/LP, refracting myriad variations of his chamber-like fusion of vaporwave 'tronics, tarraxho and technoid pop queered … Read more
Outstanding, otherworldly debut album proper by the Hype Williams collaborator known as Henny Moan and John T. Gast. An ambient enigma steeped in post-hypnagogic tristesse, 'Excerpts' is a cryptic hash of mutant dance music, lo-fi pop, and screwed lounge styles every bit as skewed and enigmatic as you might hope from someone who's worked so closely with Dean Blunt and Inga Copeland (he contributed to 'Black Is Beautiful' and 'The Redeemer' a.o.). Written and recorded early 2014 in South West England, it treats nostalgia and electronic romance with equal amounta shadowy ambiguity and screwball a… Read more
*140g LP in spined sleeve with download code card* Ok, this is more like it - a crackshot slab from the crackpot producer putting his computer controlled acoustic orchestra thru its paces. As promised or alluded to in various interviews around last year's 'Syro' LP, he's done a proper Pierre (Bastien, Henry, Schaeffer) and manufactured a whole mechanical band of things that hit other things - mainly pianos, drums and gongs - to make a very pleasing sound indeed. It's the sound of an artist exerting optimal control over his instruments but allowing for, or … Read more
After a pair of real killer EP's last year (both of them making it to our top 100 singles of 2012), Tri Angle present the label debut from FIS on his 'Preparations' EP. FIS has evolved a unique mutation of core D&B electronics with a shocking sense of rhythm structure and abstract texturing resulting in those mind-blowing records for Exit and close Kiwi pals, Samurai Horo, in the last few years. For Tri Angle, he offers up a necessary reissue of his aerobic-mystic modern classic, 'DMT Usher' - which now fetches mad money 2nd hand - backed with three exclusive new forms: the crushing/crushed geometri… Read more
Tuesday, 03 March
**Includes download coupon with exclusive bonus material - redeemable from the label** Classical crunk, who'd a thunk it? Michachu, that's who. Her and The Shapes collaborated with London Sinfonietta to create 'Chopped & Screwed' live in front of an audience at Kings Place, London in May 2010, providing Rough Trade with their first ever classical release. The concept itself is pretty far flung, merging the disciplines of codeine-laced cough syrup-drankin' early '90s Houston HipHop legend, DJ Screw, with the rarified sound of one of the world's leading con… Read more
Fresh from his woozy Amsterdam session with Gaussian Curve for Music From Memory, an oneiric solo debut from Jonny Nash on his own label, Melody As Truth. Classicist ambient meandering manifest on electric guitar, keys, synths and zither, seeking solace somewhere between Detroit Escalator Comnpany and Brian Eno. Dead lovely.
Solid longform 2-tracker from Floating Points to seal off the year. 'Nuits Sonores' is great - nice to hear Sam Shepherd edging away from the coffee table for a mooch round moodier environs, delivering a 12-minute number that sounds like a smudged Paperclip People tangling with a bit of jazzzz as it builds. 'Nectarines' is again kinda indebted to classic Carl Craig and Main Street productions, although that floaty vocal towards the end is p'rraps a little too smooth. Still, his best for a while.
The hugely-hyped acid house revivalists collect the best from their string of sought-after 12" singles, together with some new 303 jobs. Full tracklist: A1 - Light Tunnel; A2 - Transmission 5; A3 - Headtrack; B1 - Paris Dub 3; B2 - Machines Our Coming; C1 - Lovin U (Ahh Shit); C2 - We Ain't; D1 - Eating Glue; D2 - 300 Hangovers A Year; D3 - Paris Dub 1. Mix with import cereal for optimal effect.
Lars T C F Holdhus follows one of the very best releases of the new millenium so far, the 'Untitled' tape for YYAA, with another cryptic future-shock, his 1st for Liberation Technologies. Continuing a trajectory away from the calculated dance mash-ups of his now-defunct Cracksmurf alias, this project and mini-album is based on a whole other algorithmic strategy, rendering densely coded formulae into utterly mind-boggling and synaesthetically affective compositions. Once you've heard his music and done a little research into his academic background and visual practice - he studied at Frankfurt's f… Read more
*Long unavailable - finally re-pressed* Abrasive techno shunts from an incognito source. Styles rave from knuckle-dusting noise bruisers to monotone pump on the A-side, and over to more funked-up, Blawan-esque chew and blistering lowlands-style buck on the back-side. Fans of MCMXCI, the noisiest L.I.E.S., Metasplice etc should check it oot.
Sweden's SHXCXCHCXSH are set to catch a lot of heads off guard with this killer debut album. After a handful of noisy techno lashes for HEM and Avian, they render an unforeseen dilation of their sound alloying elements of trance and chamber-like vocals with their oxidised industrial churn. 'Strgths' is crafted as an album, rather than a bunch of DJ tools, using the first plate to experiment with styls beyond their previous remit, as on the etheric folk vocal and trancey ambient motifs on 'SLVRBBL' and the stunning pitched percussion of 'LTLWLF' on the first side, before unleashing a torrent of te… Read more
*Includes digital download voucher redeemable from the label* 'Instrumental Tourist' is one of the year's most anticipated electronic music albums. The meeting of established artist Tim Hecker and studio magician Daniel Lopatin aka Oneohtrix Point Never at his Software Studio yields an otherworldly and near symphonic suite apparently conducted "...to mimic the tropes and techniques of jazz-based improvisation, with little preparation prior", effecting a wide-eyed and fascinating sound as dramatic and enchanting as any we've heard this year. As you'd expect from a Tim He… Read more
Arriving like some blockbuster sequel to 'Returnal', Oneohtrix Point Never's eagerly anticipated 'Replica' sucks us deep into a simulated 4.1 world fantasia. Most strikingly, his sonic palette is far broader than before, adding piano keys, Techno beats and somersaulting glitch edits with a fancier, hi-tech studio-honed sound design, articulating a more kinetic, progressive vision of timeless electronica. There's a palpable sense that he's excitedly exploring every option afforded him by the Mexican Summer studios, immersing himself and us in a vivid off-planet adventure every bit as sin… Read more
Nick Sigsworth heads much farther out under his 4th Klaus 12" - the 3rd on his Tanum label. If James Blake starting listening to lots of vintage Pole and Basinski, his work may sound like these three tracks; fanning out from the deliciously textured crackle and ghostly string apparitions in the elliptic, loping loops of 'Tele' on top, to the strung-out, breathy washes and lone bass reminding of Rainer Veil in 'Delta', and the middle-distance, aleatoric crunch of 'Luc'.
**Vinyl Edition finally available, comes in a special die-cut sleeve including two photo inserts plus download code redeemable from the label with Bonus Track** Nils Frahm presents the truest representation of his feted piano performances with this gorgeous treatment of over two years worth of live recordings, captured and then carefully assembled in his Durton Studio and referred to by Frahm as "a collage of field recordings rather than a live album. "Berlin-based contemporary composer Nils Frahm has built a steady reputation for his intimate, poignant piano recordings, yet they so f… Read more
Finally re-pressed. Blending the current trend for all things noisy with something altogether more 'composed' we end up with a curious concoction of Cliff Martinez and Wolf Eyes, stopping at planet Badalamenti for a strong cup of Joe ("black like midnight on a moonless night"). Frost's primary influence (and sound source...) for the album was Michael Gira's seminal noise-rock band Swans, an influence which bubbles majestically on the album's central piece, cunningly titled 'We Love You Michael Gira'. The track starts simply enough; shifting, moody synthesized tones sitting eerily next t… Read more
A late pinnacle of the Drexciyan oeuvre, Storm 2 aka Transllusion's 'The Opening of the Cerebral Gate' is issued to download for the first time! This is the original CD track-listing, including 12 songs, as opposed to eight on the original 2LP. We're not quite sure what they were using on this one, but it's all remarkably bass-heavy, even saturated, compared with a lot of other Drexciyan workouts, resulting some of their most ruggedly stripped down electro-techno functions ranging from the pounding might of 'Transmission Of Life' to the militant march of 'War Of… Read more