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Thursday, 13 February
*Second Edition* Bare-boned Techno jak trax from the crypticall encoded MPIA3. 'War To The Planets' shackles discordant acid and bludgeoning kicks on the A-side and 'Casual Wedding' pumps overdriven kicks and spiralling synth grot on the flip. For the fearless.
**Clear vinyl with A4 insert** Blue Hour improves on his debut with three tracks of raw, emotive techno. 'Axis Motive' rides chunky tom/kick patterns into through a fog of dark, mystic trance-techno chords; 'Front' dries out on a claps-driven bumpty Chicago techno groove; 'Reef II' wraps up with an hypnotic 6am techno tool.
Powell, Vessel, The KVB and Bandshell conclude the Ike Yard remix series with diverse, killer results. Spawned from Desire's timely reissue of Ike Yard's seminal, self-titled 1982 debut, the series has thus far provided a canny bridge between the fertile no-man's-land of New York's early 1980s No Wave/industrial scene and the nexx generation of post-punk/techno provocateurs. This EP features the most radical revisions of Ike's material yet, following ace reworks by Regis, Monoton and more. Powell clearly relishes the opportunity to cut up 'Half A God', rollicking the origi… Read more
**Sublime, far-reaching synthscapes supposing epic, futuristic vistas and probing kosmische pulses. Mastered by Rashad Becker at D&M** "How can we imagine the future of the world, away from the standards of time that we have insisted upon giving it? How to conceive of the movements of a world in its arcs and sweeps of continents and oceans across ages without reducing it to cheap historical humanisations? Does a past, present or future even matter to the yet-to-exist events of ungraspable and fundamental ecological time? Pangaea Ultima, Steve Moore’s debut record on Spectrum Spools, is an … Read more
Wednesday, 12 February
Practically clipping the heels of his last 12", Manni Dee flexes his techno muscle again for Black Sun Records. Sidestepping the more bludgeoning noise-techno trends, Manni focuses on rhythm and space with these three cuts, swinging from crafty rollige reminding of the CUB 12"s or BMB on A-side, 'The Saints Smile Shyly' to the filtered 4/4 momentum and scrabbling synths of 'Paper Notes' and the BMB-styled breakbeat techno of 'Surface Tension' on the B-side.
Kicking House and Techno with an experimental edge ready for bigger rooms and strobe-filled basements. Frontside 'Sonagli' thumps haughty kicks and staggered drums beneath bustling percussion and Detroit/New York synth pads, kinda like a crooked take on Levon Vincent or DJ Qu, but with the punch to match. Flipside 'Ladd + (Giant Squid Mix)' bucks the wall with forceful impact, measured with grungy, melting bass synths and distorted samples reminding of Morphosis or Metasplice, whereas 'Sorry For Your Ears' coolly locks off slipping syncopations and grazing, near-concrete type textures. Smart pick for more experimental, interesting DJs.
Holy sh*t it's a new Sunroof! record, and while the name might have been amended a little, the sound is still the same delirious fuzzed-out noise rock we have come to expect from Matthew Bower's long-running troupe. 'Feral' is the first record from the Sunroof! camp in five years, and shows Bower on a blackened psychedelic tip, exposing a stark serenity in his sound we haven't heard for some time. That's not to say the noise has lost any of its grit or power, but underneath the swathes of white noise and guitar mangling there are glorious near-shoegaze harmonies to be made out. 'Feral' is an alb… Read more
Tuesday, 11 February
Shackleton enters the void left by Skull Disco with the launch of a brand new and somewhat unexpected new imprint: Woe To The Septic Heart! It's become a noticable trend that when Shackleton produces for other labels he tends to adjust ever so slightly towards their aesthetic, but Septic is clearly the place to go for the most esoteric, personal strains of his sound. 'Man On A String Parts 1 & 2' maps out a florid jungle scene populated with telepathic drum circles and spiraling sequences of melodica-like tones organised in ritual formations over a sprawling 10 minute duratio… Read more
'Restless Idylls' is the long awaited debut album from Tropic Of Cancer. It's another milestone in Blackest Ever Black's catalogue; a triumph of decadent misery and gothic romance built around eight songs written by the group's sole permanent member Camella Lobo in Los Angeles, and beautifully complemented by production from Karl O'Connor, aka Regis, who released ToC's incredible debut back in 2009 on his Downwards label. Lobo's music has come to define the wave zeitgeist, presenting a sound irrevocably haunted by the past, yet reflective of the present with uncanny, scrying vision. … Read more
Even before it was revealed that Mark Fell was behind the sensuous, unspooled but strangely disciplined house productions on Editions Mego's Sensate Focus 12" series, one might've guessed that the Sheffield-based artist was responsible, given his prior form deconstructing garage and techno as one half of SND. That said, his approach here differs to the ascetic, rhythm-obsessed approach of SND: the rhythms here are, in fact, the most conventional element, generally pretty rudimentary if still strangely compelling. No, it's Fell's digital synthesis where the real magic lies. The d… Read more
UK broken beat architects and long-time collaborators, Dego (4Hero) and Kaidi Tatham (Bugz In The Attic) run slickest grooves for Eglo. We're guessing this is a bit of a dream come true for Alex Nut and Floating Points' label, and quite the treat for fans of that butter-smoove British sound steeped in classic Jazz fusion. Four tracks vibe out from the rolling, uptempo flex of 'Ankle Injury' for the dancers to lowlit, soul-wise styles on 'Acting Up On Shxt That Don't Count' and deeper yet with the nudged deep house of 'Don't Remain The Same' and the lush, layered harmonies of 'Carrots and Sesame'.
Ex-Harry Pussy guitarist Bill Orcutt's 2009 side 'A New Way To Pay Old Debts' was an instant classic for those attuned to his brand of stomach-scrapingly raw, hoary blues improvisation. Few could have expected the album to be subsequently issued on CD by Editions Mego, but the more you thought about it the more it made sense - though all-acoustic, Orcutt's music is every bit as extreme, violent and threshold-testing as that of, say, Florian Hecker, Russell Haswell or Mika Vainio. As if to prove it wasn't a token gesture towards eclecticism, Mego boss Peter Rehberg has signed a brand n… Read more
*Comes with a huge fold-out poster inside* Following last year's devasting UL8 set, Mark Fell returns to Editions Mego for a 2x12" excursion into advanced rhythm mechanics. Back in January 2011, the SND man was invited by Erik 'Errorsmith' Wiegand to create some presets for the Native Instruments soft-synth he was building. In the end, NI rejected Fell's sounds, but their loss is our gain: he's further developed the pattern-Generating systems he used for UL8 and connected them to sounds produced in Wiegand's synthesizer with a result so tantalising you're almost reminded of Wiegand's own classic… Read more
Stephen O'Malley's Ideologic Organ presents this very necessary reissue of Romanian "spectralist music" pioneer Iancu Dumitrescu's staggering 'Pierres Sacrées' (1989-1990) backed with an engrossing new work, 'Hazards and Tectonics' (2009-2013), commissioned by Glasgow Tectonics Festival. Born in Romania in 1944 Iancu Dumitrescu has forged a fascinating oeuvre encompassing contemporary composition and philosophy. As the latest addition to Ideologic Organ's currently unparalleled reissue programme, the A-side 'Pierres Sacrées' "for prepared piano, metallic plates a… Read more
*Reissue of this amazing album, originally out on Miasmah* Marsen Jules, Arvo Part, Zbigniew Preisner's soundtrack work for Krzysztof Kieslowski, Deaf Center, Max Richter, Erik Satie, Alberto Iglesias - if you are familiar and into any or all of these names then this album on the exceptional Miasmah label will no doubt end up on your essential listening pile for the foreseeable future. With string arrangements provided courtesy of Stefan Wesolowski, the foundations of the album are set with Cello and Violin painting fragile outlines coloured by subtle electronic manipulations, harp, piano and… Read more
*Back In Stock - pressed on red vinyl housed in red inner bag and embossed sleeve* Hype Williams' Dean Blunt and Inga Copeland have released a lot of albums in the last couple of years - few of them better than their untitled 2010 effort for Carnivals - so you could be forgiven for not keeping count. But the truth is that this record, their first for Kode9's Hyperdub, is one of their most haunting and vividly realised to date. Copeland's sighing vocals are worth the price of admission alone, particularly when riding DIY footwork rhythms ('12') or or playing a… Read more
Monday, 10 February
Bristol buddies Komon (sans "azmuk") and Laurie Appleblim pair up on two slinky garage and boogie numbers. Up top, 'Gas Jam' has finds their mutual groove in a blend of UK garage skip and driving, deeper tech-house sensuality which has already found favour with the likes of Marcus Nasty & the Hypercolour crew on Rinse FM, and big rooms playas, Eats Everything and Carl Craig. B-side they dip the pace to a crafty, modern take on '80s soul jams with well-tucked bass bump and breathy chords angled with technoid chug and swagger.
**Remastered reissue edition of 500 housed in spot gloss jacket with 4-page 12" booklet of liner notes** 'Prata Bagnati Del Monte Analogo' is a sublime and truly rarified piece of occult esoterica produced by the famous Franco Battiato and originally published in 1979 on a series he curated for Gianni Sassi's Cramps Records. This edition has been remastered by Giuseppe Ielasi from original tapes. It was inspired by the unfinished pataphysical novel 'Le Mont Analogue' by French writer Renè Daumal, himself a student of engimatic Armenian mystic Georges Ivanovich Gurdjie… Read more
**First time on vinyl - spotgloss gatefold jacket with metallic-printed liner notes insert. Edition of 500** A label like Die Schachtel can easily overwhelm any listener with its vast catalogue, dividing its attentions between showcasing new experimental music (predominantly from Italy) and reissuing lost classics. In both cases you'll often find yourself confronted with works and artists you'll have had no prior knowledge of, and frankly, it can all seem a little bit disorientating, even overwhelming at times. This release is one that really shines out though - it's surely one … Read more
Fresh outta Maccie D's, William Emmanuel Bevan aka Burial drops his 2nd solo EP of 2012 'pon Hyperdub. Much like his 'Kindred EP', he focuses on long-form composition with two tracks hovering around the 12 minute and 14 minute mark respectively, taking license to really stretch out into fragmented, impressionistic and cinematic scapes strafed with elements of vintage hardcore, heartbreaking vocal samples and murkiest atmospheres. Of course, you already know that, but it's great to hear him really running about as far from the club as he's ever done, leaving us with something to dance to i… Read more
*Ships Friday* Burial's back. Following suit from last Christmas' 'Truant', Hyperdub present three new pieces from the shadowy producer. It's a fine salve for seasonal woes, ripping loose with running man-style rave breaks and darkcore motifs across the dystopian sonic fiction of A-side, 'Rival Dealer', whilst the flipside reveals a whole new dimension to his sound with the soaring harmonies, twinkling chime-trees and '80s power drums of 'Hiders' and the tortuous, cinematically edited narration of 'Come Down To Us'. The heads will have a feast picking this one apart - what's up with all the refer… Read more
*Re-Press* That difficult second album then. Not content with having to follow-up on the success of his staggering debut, the kind of uncontrollable hyperbole electronic musicians have rarely had to deal with and the small matter of keeping his identity concealed from all but his closest friends (and some of those apparently don't even know), Burial has just gone and produced an album that appeared on first listen to satisfy even our most unreasonable expectations and, on repeat play, surpass them. "Untrue" is a much more emotive beast than its eponymous predecessor, a mood augmented by the vocal emphas… Read more
**3LP Gatefold Vinyl - 140g pressing recut by Noel Summerville from original DAT master. Includes etching on side F. Includes sticker sheet with hexagon die cut stickers** Here's what we said when Geogaddi was first released: "An album as highly anticipated as this (four years in the making) is always going to come under intense scrutiny. Geogaddi doesn't necessarily break any new ground for Boards, but succeeds in bringing together more of the BOC magic that's reached so deeply into our collective psyche's since 'Music Has The Right...' was first released in 1998. The blueprint is … Read more
**2LP Gatefold Vinyl - 140g pressing cut from original metalwork. Includes Skam braille sticker & transparent blue Boards of Canada sticker** Here it is then - the seminal BoC album from 1998 finally re-pressed on vinyl, released in collaboration with Skam and still sounding as good as it did 15 years ago when we first got our mitts on it sat in a small shop in Afflecks Palace, Manchester...
**140g vinyl recut by Noel Summerville from original DAT master. Includes sticker postcard with die cut windows** 'In A Beautiful Place In The Country' is arguably one of the most beautiful records in BoC's catalogue. As part of the holy hexagon with 'Hi Scores', the 'Aquarius' 7" and their 'Music Has The Right..." and 'Geogaddi' LP's, it's rightly gained something of a(n) (oc)cult status as a time portal to better, bucolic times... Essential pick.
Friday, 07 February
Parisian, Aleqs Notal comes with the freshest, craftiest Bass/Tech sound on his killer debut for CleckCleckBoom. Borrowing ideas from Kowton's gritty Grime-House, 3D Night Slugs styles, and A Made Up Sound's deft jungle reductions, the 'A.E.T. E.P.' is 2014's first real dancefloor shocker for those that know. A-side he exhibits a very canny feel for spatial layering and tightly tucked groove with the spidery web of electroid polyrhythms, lush pads and reduced boogie vibes of 'Ancient Theory', and 'Informal Utility' finds a seductive blend of fluid, Substance-like dub chords and corroded, itchy d… Read more
*Vinyl re-press, available for the first time in months* Clams Casino might just be the hottest producer on the planet right now. For some time his electrifying beats have been lighting up mixtapes for Lil B, Soulja Boy and other unique personalities in the new rap underground, but recently he's stepped out of the shadows to become acclaimed in his own right, releasing his own instant-classic Instrumentals mixtape, and now proffering a timely EP on Tri Angle, his debut release proper. Those expecting more of the ruggedly romantic R&B infusions he's best known for will be initially surprised, … Read more
Thursday, 06 February
*Pressed on 140g vinyl, packaged in a pro-press color jacket and a silkscreened pvc sleeve* At long last PAN present the radical, revelatory debut album of sonic fictions by peerless mastering engineer, sound artist and composer, Rashad Becker. Via his day job as a cutting engineer at Berlin's Dubplates & Mastering and his post-production studio, Clunk, the Syrian-born German-raised autodidact has in some respects contributed more to the shape and timbre of contemporary electronic and avant-garde music than anyone else. He's blessed with a heightened sensiti… Read more
*Regis and Haswell finally debut their Concrete Fence project - 12" mastered and cut by Rashad Becker at D&M, pressed on 140g white vinyl which itself is housed in a silk screened pvc sleeve with artwork by Bill Kouligas & Russell Haswell* Regis & Russell Haswell's Concrete Fence is a tantalising proposition for noise and techno freaks. As a duo they first rallied under the aegis at the 2012 Blackest Ever Black party in London's Corsica Studios with an improvised live set that veered between shambolic and inspired (often the former) but opened a whole can of worms … Read more