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Monday, 13 January 2014
*2013 Reissue* "Cool post-punk garagey Gang Of Four joyfulness" - Guardian Guide". Electrelane are four young women who refuse to be defined by one sound, and their second album, 'The Power Out', is a gauntlet thrown down to those who think they can predict their next move. Recorded and mixed in Chicago with Steve Albini. While the speedy ambience of their debut remains, the most startling difference is that they have introduced vocals, something largely absent from their previous recordings. Not only do words play a more important role on this album, but Verity uses her voice as an instrument to devastating effect, singing in English, German, French and Spanish. Check.
Friday, 10 January 2014
*Includes Download Code Redeemable From The Label* Julianna Barwick returns with the successor to 2011's charming The Magic Place. Given how successful that self-recorded LP was, it’s surprising to see that the Louisiana-born singer has looked to an external producer to document and frame her work this time around, namely Sigur Ros associate Alex Somers. Barwick once again uses delay-pedals to build heaven-scraping towers of chorused plainsong out of her earnestly, achingly pretty soprano, placing them in what John Foxx - whose 90s’ ambient recordings the better mate… Read more
Thursday, 09 January 2014
*one-sided pressing. Edition of 300* Big, trancey UK garage-house anthem currently in favour with Breach, Maya Jane Coles, Laurent Garnier, Pete Tong, Rinse FM, Richy Ahmed, Shadow Child, Eton Messy.
Solid techno tools. Forward Strategy Group give it some grubby, low-slung welly on 'Rundold' and Exium carves an industrial groove off the bone with 'Raw Visions'. Oscar Mulero makes it kinky with the slippery rolige and dank warehouse dub of 'Blackstar' and Manni Dee rolls off wide-ass subbass in 'Serenity'.
*180gm Vinyl* 'En Route' (1986) was the fifth album collaboration between Dieter Moebius and legendary studio meister Conny Plank. It was also to be their last, as Plank passed away shortly after in 1987. It appeared at the business end of the analogue-to-digital crossover and can be heard as an exploration of Plank's incredible studio's capabilities for shaping and bending rhythm and sound. Asmus Tietchens notes in the accompanying booklet that 'En Route' avoided the fashionable trends of industrial and new wave scenes, yet it's clearly compatible with both, with most emphasis on taut, rhythm… Read more
Tuesday, 07 January 2014
*Vinyl Edition* Slow fizzin', cryptic tape melt murk from Wanda Group, fresh in with Opal Tapes' third batch from the brink. Coming from the manhead behind Dem Hunger, who delivered that wicked 'Caveman Smack' on Leaving Records, and following a wicked split with Ekoplekz and a C20 for NNA Tapes, it's his most substantial cassette so far, burrowing deeper into a psychedelic ferric humus to masticate alien melodic minerals and trace elements of microtonal harmonics. It feels barely played, more like it was rubbed onto the spool with pebbles and flotsam then buried… Read more
Friday, 03 January 2014
**Canny 4/4 Caribbean/Afrobeat dancefloor flavour** "Soundway continue their single series with the incendiary 'Shango' by Lord Nelson who hails originally from the Caribbean island of Tobago. The original 1978 track sits on the A-side with a bass-heavy, dancefloor-minded remix from Daniel Haaksman and DJ Beware on the flip side. Robert 'Lord' Nelson, now in his 80s, is one of Trinidad and Tobago's most popular artists with a string of hit records from the 1950s all the way through to the 80s and 90s. After leaving Trinidad for the USA in the early 50's Nelson soon became a much-loved calypsonian … Read more
Alongside this weeks double hitter from 2000F & Joker, Guido's massively awaited 'Orchestral Lab' has to be our pick of the dubstep crop. Part of Peverelist's Punch drunk stable, Guido is in good comapny with Gemmy, Pinch, Gatekeeper and the rest of the Bristol crew seriously holding it down at the moment. 'orchestral Lab' is the immediate attention grabber on the A-side, squeezing in more synthfunk and subbass into four minutes than most producers manage in an album, this guy has funky fingers just like Joker, that blatantly love to eak out the most curdled riffage possible a… Read more
*2013 Reissue* I've always wanted to love Electrelane, I mean, the very idea of them has me in fits - Stereolab and Sonic Youth as primary influences, Kraut rock leanings, girls and guitars. they're almost tailor made to suit my every need, but all of their albums have just fallen slightly short for me. The rather more experimental 'Axes' had tons of praise lavished upon it on it's release but there was something about it that just stopped me from fully gettin it it, and I couldn't quite put my finger on what exactly that was. Now the four ladies are back with 'No Shouts, No Ca… Read more
Monday, 30 December 2013
**Complex, pre-computer avant-garde composition. Challenging, arrhythmic and involving clicks, pulses and twangs scored for a electronic orchestra, recorded at the Center for Contemporary Music, Oakland, California, 1972, and another incredible two-part composition using the labyrinthine reverbs created by a motorcycle in tunnels beneath the hills of San Francisco. 63 minutes total** "'String Quartet Describing The Motions of Large Real Bodies' was composed as the potential orchestra for an opera based on the text of 'In Sara, Mencken, Christ a… Read more
**Intriguing collection of conceptual poetry/sound art. Edition limited to 270 copies** "Ulises Carrión's audio works clearly reflect his passion for language, its structures, sounds and meanings. He greatly enjoyed grammatically dissecting languages and trying to understand and explore their structures. His many initiatives and projects bear witness to his boundless obsessions with communication and circulation of works and ideas as a cultural strategy. This LP includes “Hamlet for Two Voices” (1977) in which two voices read out the names of the characters in the Shakespearean play … Read more
"Staggering sound poetry document, in deluxe boxset. "Alga Marghen presents one of the most impressive sound poetry anthologies ever published, introducing you to the sound works of the Nouveau Realiste artist, Francois Dufrene. His work, along with that of Gil J Wolman and Brion Gysin, was a strong influence for experimental poets like Henri Chopin, Bernard Heidsieck and Ake Hodell. François Dufrene could be considered the younger of the first generation sound poets. Already in the Lettrist Group when he was only 16 years old, with his own style marked by an hyper-powerful voice… Read more
Friday, 20 December 2013
**Includes digital download voucher redeemable from the label** "Just for the record, The National Jazz Trio of Scotland don't play jazz, nor are they a trio. And while their status as national ambassadors is not exactly official, acclaimed pianist Bill Wells has however worked with many of the key players in the Scottish indie scene from the likes of Isobel Campbell and Future Pilot AKA to the magnificent collaboration with former Arab Strap vocalist Aidan Moffat "Everything's Getting Older" on Chemikal Underground recently. Indeed a host of Glasgow's finest hav… Read more
Wednesday, 18 December 2013
*Reissue of legendary album. Now revised with 11" square sheet of sandpaper stuck to the printed inner sleeve, housed in die-cut jacket with 7" pressing of the original flexidisc, and quite importantly, a poly sleeve to ensure your other records don't get scratched** Vini Reilly's landmark effort, 'The Return Of The Durutti Column' is given the deluxe reissue treatment, replete with sandpaper and the bonus inclusion of 'Madeleine' and 'Lips That Would Kiss'. Notable not only for the jacket, it's a pioneering piece of music pairing the rarified simplicity of Vini's … Read more
Deadbeat dubs two cuts from The Upsetter and The Orb's 'More Tales From The Orbservatory'. Topside he gives a slow, heaving Rhythm & Sound style extended Nyah dub for 'Ball Of Fire'; flipside 'Fuzzball' is reduced and stepped-up on a Champions League Dub.
Luke Abbott and Clark rework Nils Frahms' rarified Juno synth meditations. The chiming, melancholic, AFX-like charms of 'For' and 'Peter' also appear in their original form for comparison with the slow and serene ambient techno reveal of Abbott, and a typically dense, complex and kinetic Clark remix.
Opal Tapes firmly bolster their industrial credentials with this highly disciplined grip of hi-res sound designs by Yves De Mey. Proceeding releases on Line and Sandwell District, beside collaborations with fellow Belgian producer Peter Van Hoesen as Sendai, we'd argue that 'Metrics' is the finest representation of De Mey's clinical process and technical expertise yet. More concise than 'Counting Triggers' and less compromised than Sendai's 'Geotope' LP, there's an engrossingly dramatic and efficient, if somewhat abstract, narrative wending between their hyperreal shapes and vaporised textures, f… Read more
Bullion debuts his strange soul duo Blludd Relations with Jesse Hackett (Gorillaz/Owiny Sigoma Band) on homebrewed label, Deek Recordings - also home to his Nautic trio with Young Turks' Tic and Blue Roses' Laura Groves. It's a very welcome entry from one of our favourite UK pop-and-soul-smiths, blending those falsetto vocals which have become increasingly prevalent over the last few years with a rich palette of instrumentation and subtle studio chicanery in a breezy meeting of balearic pop, dub, and electronics. Comparisons bear up with everyone from Junior Boys in the blissful blu… Read more
Tuesday, 17 December 2013
Hessle Audio come with debut business from Bandshell following that smart Elgato 12". Cracked Techno dub is the aesthetic for 'Dust March', and he's weighty with it. The title cut runs cone-quivering bass under a cloud of decimated digital noises and splashing, abstracted rhythms, 'Rise Em' goes tribal with agitated drum syncopation and whooping vocals in a humid synthetic atmosphere. 'Metzger' is reduced further, patterning rimshots and dusty hi-hats with elliptical bass and a wavey IDM-ish chord sequence beside the thick-necked roadside swagger of 'Dog Sweater'.
Opal Taper, Stephen Bishop's intrepid Basic House project is steadily becoming one of the most fascinating off-road electronic projects around. 'Oats', for Luke Younger's highly esteemed Alter imprint, places him in good company alongside textural and rhythmic explorers such as Jamal Moss, Helm and Damien Dubrovnik. It's his 2nd album of 2013 after the crumbling deconstructions of 'Caim In Bird Form' for Digitalis, and finds his sound at once congealing and diffusing with a unique sonic syntax. Textural decay demarcates its six tracks, flowing from the buckled tape loops and guttural bass thump of '… Read more
Monday, 16 December 2013
**140g wax in silk-screened PVC sleeve, mastered and cut by Rashad Becker, artwork by Steven Warwick and Bill Kouligas in typically gorgeous PAN packaging including a printed inner sleeve** Steven Warwick aka Heatsick cocks a unique and compelling perspective on contemporary dance music with his bold follow-up to 'Intersex', a gorgeous, layered work that those of you into DJ Sprinkles should check out without delay. Now woven with leaner dancefloor muscle, the deeply funked views of 'Re-Engineering' are characterised by the artist as a "cybernetic poem". We can take this quite literally in hi… Read more
White Vinyl re-press available now. Steven Warwick's Heatsick project began life back in 2006 as a series of noisy sound experiments which eventually found their way onto cassette. Living in Berlin at the time, Warwick soon got drawn in to the city's club vortex and began shifting into a realm which, despite the odds, somehow worked in that environment, culminating in a Panorama Bar live show which has since been talked about by more people than could possibly have been there to witness it for themselves. Remarkably - the Heatsick setup involves little more than a battered old Casio keyboard and an… Read more
Wednesday, 11 December 2013
**Limited edition of 500** 2nd of three 7"s from Brainfeeder's up-and-coming beat maker/MC issued by Warp. The drawling rap delivery and muggy, barely standing beat of 'Pop Shoot Pop' sounds something like Gaslamp Killer recording for Anticon, and 'Shake Stunt (feat Oliver the 2nd)' bumps sex rhymes and crooked MPC knocks.
Monday, 09 December 2013
Paul Woolford's Special Request series steps up from white labels with a Houndstooth debut including Lee Gamble and Anthony Naples remixes. Across all four tracks they make a great effort to reprise that brief window of hardcore rave utopia/dystopia which existed ruffly between 1991-1994. Woolford's originals look to the outside influence of Belgian and New York techno with the sub-loaded kicker 'Wall To Wall', and the adroit breakbeat adrenalizer 'Broken Dreams', whilst Anthony Naples gargles 'Mindwash' inna scything, emotional darkcore style nodding to cla… Read more
"Femme fronted pocket punk and domestic-synth pop from French DIY workaholics X Ray Pop. Compiled from the mastertapes of the original 1980s privately pressed vinyl LPs and minuscule cassette runs. X Ray Pop are a group of whom are easy to scratch the surface, but almost impossible to get the bottom of. With an iconic moniker, telltale graphic style and demanding ‘buy me’ Day-Glo colour coding policy the French vinyl output of X Ray Pop as a specialist subject is, at first glance, memo- rable and achievable. Cocksure fans of Euro wave pop often proclaim X Ray expertise from behind many a… Read more
Friday, 06 December 2013
Opal Tapes welcome Berlin-based Italian producer Shapednoise to the fold with six tracks of malefic, distorted techno. 'Until Human Voices Wake Us' is the label's first release brokered specifically for vinyl - following their LP reissues of MCMXCI's 'Skogen, Flickan Och Flaskan', and Wanda Group's 'P*ss Fell Out Like Sunlight' - and fits perfectly with their most extreme aesthetics. Consolidating his love of industrial noise, rave and hard techno, 'Until Human Voices Wake Us' could never really be called one or the other - it's a grotty, primal new form that feels like it just… Read more
*Limited Vinyl Edition Back In Stock - Coloured Vinyl* Sounding unreasonably mature for a 21-year old composer, Olafur Arnalds has already got one well-received album behind him (Eulogy For Evolution), and this follow-up EP can only add to his growing reputation. It'd be all too easy to compare Arnalds with fellow Icelanders Nico Muhly and Johann Johannssonn, so that's precisely what I'll do: in general there's a sense of very tangible, heartstring-tugging romance common to the work of all three (and for that matter Max Richter) but to be more specific, the weary, bereft-sounding … Read more
Thursday, 05 December 2013
"‘Little Girl’ is the second single from the album ‘Sweet Heart Sweet Light’. The single marks a shift to calmer waters after the riotous ‘Hey Jane’ and features an exclusive instrumental version of album track ‘I Am What I Am’ on the B side. 1000 copies."
Wednesday, 04 December 2013
**Includes digital download code redeemable from the label** Planet Mu bubble up this Afro-pop treat from south of the equator, courtesy of John Withers and Emmanuel Nzaramba aka John Wizards. Blending highlife, Shangaan Electro, R&B, dub and boogie-pop with an effervescent electronic touch, they've just hatched one of this summer's most unexpected charms, a dizzily joyful sound gushing with the sweetest melodies and nudged with an effortless funk. The story of how they came to be only adds to this: "Maputo, Cape Town and Dar es Salaam; these are the three places that band leader and produ… Read more
Tuesday, 03 December 2013
**Rigid 4LP box + bonus 7". White vinyl edition of 200 with liner notes** V-O-D reissue of some of the earliest work by Hamburg's synth music pioneer, Asmus Tietchens, on vinyl for the first time, some 30 odd years after they were originally issued as four super-limited tapes on YHR between 1981 - 1983. Schooled in the mathematically sound electronic composition techniques of Karlheinz Stockhausen, and looking for a future beyond Krautrock's seemingly infinite horizons, Asmus Tietchens' music mapped vectors for distant sounds as yet unheard when he wrote the music on 4K7 between 1975-197. Despite… Read more