Thursday, 03 October
Teesside's more conventional house and techno label (Opal Tapes reppin' for the weirdos) drop four slower disco-house moves. Vibes range from lowlit beatdown chug on 'Moonrunners' with Spooner to slo-mo chug on 'UrNoGud4Me - D Link (fat dog & NY*AK)', and one darker, synth-heavy and strutting electro-house joint, 'Werk' featuring CJ Raine.
Thursday, 26 September
*Limited Re-press* Quite probably our favourite pair of releases from Dominick Fernow's lesser known alias Rainforest Spiritual Enslavement, "The Plant With Many Faces" and "Folklore Venom" are now available on vinyl for the first time, following on from an excellent LP for Blackest Ever Black and 12" for Bed of Nails. The project has become one of Fernow's most intriguing, offering an artificial, unnerving take on both Ambient and more propulsive electronic music, in turns reminding us of everything from Selected Ambient Works Vol.II to John C… Read more
*Limited Re-press* Quite probably our favourite pair of releases from Dominick Fernow's lesser known alias Rainforest Spiritual Enslavement, "The Plant With Many Faces" and "Folklore Venom" are now available on vinyl for the first time, following on from an excellent LP for Blackest Ever Black and 12" for Bed of Nails. The project has become one of Fernow's most intriguing, offering an artificial, unnerving take on both Ambient and more propulsive electronic music, in turns reminding us of everything from Selected Ambient Works Vol.II to John Carpenter, V… Read more
**Oh lord, this is Arthur Russell's seminal classic reissued on vinyl for the first time, housed in kraftliner sleeves printed in white litho, with art paper inners with artwork by Jennifer Lucy Allan** It's difficult to overstate the unique brilliance of Arthur Russell's posthumous release, 'Another Thought'. Like many others, I wouldn't be ashamed to admit shedding a tear or two to the sheer life-affirming qualities of this record over the years. It's not sad, it's just heart-breakingly beautiful, stripped to the bare essentials of Arthur's voice and cello dappled with … Read more
**Double LP pressed on 180 gm vinyl, Includes download code redeemable from the label** Tommy Four Seven and his buddy Alain present striking gothic techno architecture as These Hidden Hands on their excellent debut album. Converging a brutalist aesthetic with studio dynamism, their eponymous debut cycles eleven crushing blends of wrecking ball bass hits and pulverised noise rent with super wide and spacious production. It's a sound that's steadily attracted a lot of listeners and producers alike in the last few years, yet THH hold their own with a steadfast style absorbing infl… Read more
**Triple vinyl in gatefold jacket designed by Stephen O'Malley** Another breathtaking Recollection GRM release: Francois Bayle's acousmatic masterpiece, 'L'Expérience Acoustique', presented in its entirety on vinyl for the first time. Realised between 1966-1972 using the best technology available at the time, this 2 hour opus "investigates the true nature of the listening process itself" according to the GRM's Christian Zanési & François Bonnet. It's an investigation of acoustic sound at its purest levels and borders on psychedelic in effect. Chopping material from the world ar… Read more
**Lysergic solo blues from the Harry Pussy legend, articulated with uniquely jagged grammar** "'A History of Every One' by Bill Orcutt is an album of songs: minstrel songs, holiday songs, hymns, marches, cowboy songs, Disney songs, work songs, delta blues. The original tunes themselves are nothing special, well known, but not particularly well-regarded. Most would be filler on a mid-60's Doris Day or Burl Ives LP. What Orcutt does with them however is remarkable: expanding upon techniques developed on 2011's 'How the Thing Sings' and incorporating ideas forged since his recording o… Read more
Exquisite dream pop perfection from Nautic's lead singer, Laura Groves. Originally hailing from Shipley near Bradford and arriving with co-production by Deek's revered label boss, Bullion, Laura gets all the bonus points before we've even started, then she goes and gives her debut solo record an amazing title like 'Thinking About Thinking', and, well, put a fork in us 'cause we're bloody done. Laura's in possession of a folk-wise R&B croon that'd make marines weep, and employs it with captivating beauty on four mirage-like songs written shortly after she moved from God's own coun… Read more
Wickedly funked-up and skewed house from Lorenz Lindner, better known as MixMup, for Joy Orb's Hinge Finger. 'After The Job' proceeds from one of 2012's finest 12"s, his 'MM/KM' EP with Kassem Mosse, in damn fine style, grinding away with three gritty, technoid, and abstracted groovers, plus one lovely ambient bit. The decelerated boogie bleep chug of 'After The Job' gives way to a raw, percussive basement jaunt called 'Copa Jams' on the A-side, ad the B-side gets even better with the squashed, freaky bass and boz-eyed fog machine march of 'Doomed' and the bliss blips of 'Bungalow' to close. Dope.
*Includes a copy of the CD free inside* Axel Willner aka The Field unplugs his computer and powers up an outboard array for his captivating 4th album. Adopting an all-hardware set-up has resulted in a deceleration of his star-bound trajectory, recalibrating the curve of his vectors into tangibly darker techno realms - most explicitly inferred by the album's all-black cover art and a curiously suggestive title, 'Cupid's Head'. But the romantic types need not worry: it's really only a subtle deviation; that inimitably lush, widescreen appeal of 'From Here We Go Sublime' and 'Looping State Of Min… Read more
*Deftly woven jazz, techno and electronica from Brooklyn's Archie Pelago trio* "Sequenced with great care to the moods and tempos contained within,Hall of Human Origins opens with "Chronomancer", a recurring number from their live sets that has finally settled into a form of permanency. "Joyce Drop" follows with a half-time tempo accented by rolling breaks and a free-wheelin' momentum that rises and falls with each melodic progression. Closing the A side is "Wrong Apartment (Worms)", a funkified groove engulfed by a cornucopia of shifting synths and percussion. "I Know About Rober… Read more
**Includes 24" x 12" poster** Steaming Afro-boogie heat from Nigeria, 1978. Up top, he chops out the squiggly guitar lines, Moogy squelch and almost rapped/sung vox of 'Move!; down below, 'Hot Love' is a more stripped and sensuous disco zinger wrapping chiming keys and simmering drums to infectious, wormy bass. Class stuff.
*Includes Download Code Redeemable From The Label* Trentemøller succinctly consolidates his dancefloor and gothpop faces with a finely crafted 3rd album, 'Lost'. He's all but deserted the glitchy tech-house mnmlism he built his name on in favour of a full blown fascination with moody gothic wave atmospheres and driving rock rhythms, given certified weight by the guest appearances from perennial miserablists Low, and a selection of authentically haunting vocalists including Jana Hunter, Marie Fisker, Jonny Pierce, Kazu Makino, Sune Rose Wagner and Ghost Society. He's now equally ad… Read more
**Coloured vinyl, includes digital download code redeemable from the label - The first Mazzy Star album in 17 years…** Co-written by Hope Sandoval and David Roback, Seasons Of Your Day was recorded in California and Norway and features performances by all the original members of Mazzy Star along with special guests including Colm O’Ciosoig (My Bloody Valentine) and a special appearance by the late, legendary Bert Jansch in a guitar duet of chilling intensity with David Roback on the song “Spoon”...
Drumcell represents that distinctive LA techno sound with the serpentine darkside chicanery of 'Sleep Complex'. Thirteen tracks of slithering, instinctively shuffled machine rhythms create frictional bedrock for spooling, Millsian bleeps and brooding astral synth projections delivered with steadfast vision. As we all know, techno albums can have a tendency towards being a bunch of tools, but there's a narrative element to 'Sleep Complex' that works well in its favour, wending across tempos and patterns with an intricately compelling aesthetic taking us from the oily acid tessellations of 'Dist… Read more
*Expanded 2LP cut at 45RPM in a gatefold sleeve with Obi strip* "Universal Sound label are proud to present the reissue of Michael White’s ‘Spirit Dance’, originally released on Impulse Records in 1972. Deep spiritual jazz released in limited edition luxurious CD box, as well as a heavyweight 180gm audiophile double vinyl edition cut at 45-rpm in a deluxe gatefold sleeve. This is the debut album from Michael White, released on Impulse Records in 1972. Michael White’s deep, spiritual jazz fitted in perfectly with the roster of artists at the Impulse label at the start of the 1970s, includin… Read more
Stripped-down, hypnotic dub techno swing-step from Berlin-based Deadbeat. Two pacey pieces of swirling but locked-on groove compatible with garage techno groovers and Chain Reaction styles alike.
Ostgut Ton represent their expanded vision of electronic dance music beyond house and techno with a diverse set of non-standard productions by Fiedel, Virginia, Rolando, Function, Barker & Baumecker, and more. Simply put, there's not a banger in sight, but there are some really sweet moments from all involved. It's maybe best considered as Ostgut's answer to Warp's legendary AI volumes, stretching out from Barker & Baumecker's gyroscopic slow-fast IDM on 'Meiose' to Stingray-style steppers' electro from Fiedel, and thru to sci-fi Detroit-style visions from Rolando and Function. Tobias. imp… Read more
Big moves from Champion's Formula, illuminating the UK's massive Jackin' House scene with Hannah Wants & Chris Lorenzo's anthem, 'What I Want'. One of the most virulent underground UK dance phenomena of the recent years, the generally Midlands/Northern sound has been infiltrating the London-sound sets of Brackles and Oneman, among others, for a minute now. Hannah Wants & Chris Lorenzo are arguably the scene's biggest DJ/producers, and yet, by our reckoning this is their first appearance on vinyl - take from that what you will. Anyway, their 'What I want' original is a signature… Read more
Thursday, 19 September
'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
*Upfront Exclusive* *One sided-12" pressed on splattered vinyl, pressed at Pallas, includes free download* We're biased but, jeez, this is good. Making use of original vocal parts from tricky and Francesca Belmonte, 'Valentine' has been completely re-built by Andy Stott, a split-level production that pushes into slow-fast territory with immense bass terror before flexing out into a footwork section that bangs hard. Everyone goes on about Maxinquaye and, yeah, it's a total classic, but for us Tricky's 'Nearly God' side project, especially 'Poems', has always stood out as a… Read more
*Includes download code redeemable from the label* The increasingly ubiquitous Huerco S. services Dan Lopatin’s Software imprint with his debut album proper, following that seductive, rep-making trio of EPs on Wicked Bass, Opal Tapes / Boomkat Editions and Future Times. It’s top-drawer stuff, taking the new age ambience and rugged, smoke-choked house rhythms du jour and turning them inside out, opening up new zones of dubwise introspection. ‘Plucked From The Ground, Towards The Sun’ is a 90s Chain Reaction cut inspected through a smeared microscope lens, but it’s the minor key shifts and a… Read more
Exceptional slow techno deviations from Mike Jefford aka Positive Centre for Sigha's Our Circula Sound label. Maintaining the pressure below 110bpm, 'An Assembly' is a throttling set of six tracks compatible with a certain strain of techno that's emerged recently from producers such as Fishermen, CUB and Samuel Kerridge. Wide basses and precise, roiling percussions are rent with evil, sepulchral spatial dynamics: proper dungeon music for shadow lurkers and stony faced 7am techno goths. The molasses bass wade and shivering hi-hats of 'An Assembly' set the scene for dive-bombing drone synth… Read more
The KVB unveil their gloaming industro-goth alias, Burma Camp on Avian's Mira sublabel. Three tracks home in and expand on the more coruscating, abrasive side of The KVB's sound, isolating and tempering its most esoteric side. The noxious cloud of tortured vocals and jagged pulses in 'Repulsion' falls somewhere between the desolate black metal of Wold and Silent Servant's most blown-out post-punk techno, full of evil, pregnant suspense and 'marish intent. 'Isa' reminds more of Zhark Record's bleakest, thundering techno, but alloyed with stentorian, dystopian dungeon vocals, and 'Attracti… Read more
Inimitable French avant-garde unit Gol present a "music that stands for a post-nuclear shamanistic ritual for the irradiated days to come". Having established themselves as denizens of impeccable outsider taste thru collaborations with Ghédelia Tazartès, Ana-Maria Avram & Iancu Dumitrescu, and Charlemagne Palestine, among others in recent years, it's something of a revelation to hear them unaccompanied here. Conceptually, 'Anshin-on' is a threnody in two parts echoing the leaking reactor 06 of the Fukushima plant damaged in the 2011 Japanese tsunami. As far as we can tell it combines multiple recording… Read more
**2xLP housed in a gatefold tip-on jacket with etching by Travis Millard on side 4. Includes digital download voucher redeemable from the label** "If The Evil One was the album that broke Erickson out of the indie ghetto and brought him to a worldwide audience, the follow-up, 1986’s Don’t Slander Me was the one that showcased his rock and roll sensibilities like no recording before. Losing the more out-there and exotic elements of earlier and future albums, it presents us with Erickson the rocker, playing punk, rockabilly, blues and – in ‘Burn The Flames’, later found on the Return Of … Read more
**Gatefold jacket with 24"x24" fold-out poster and download code redeemable from the label** "Originally hailing from Australia’s Blue Mountains, but now residing in the UK, and following on from their critically acclaimed debut, Cloud Control’s second album, ‘Dream Cave’, is an addictive swirl that uniquely blurs together the psychedelic guitar pop and soaring West Coast harmonies of their debut with warm electronics, programmed loops and reverb-soaked percussion."
**Luscious 5th world Balearic grooves and atmospheres** "The Secret of 12 O'clock is the second Em Records release by Spaniard Juan Alberto Arteche Guel's Finis Africae project. It collects six pieces from three 1980s albums, pieces not released on the Em Records compilation "A Last Discovery". This collection captures Finis Africae in a more spiritual mode, organic and flowing, with drone textures, and featuring flute, hand percussion, guitar, sax, and synths, combined with field recordings in a music which could be heard as a less-chilly and more organic … Read more
**Now available again on Heavenly Sweetness** Tlahoun Gésséssé is widely regarded as the "Voice" of Ethiopia. Born in 1940, his singing and recording career began in the 1950's until his recent death earlier in 2009. As many followers of the Ethiopiques series will know, the incredible 17th installment is dedicated to Tlahoun, largely featuring arrangements by Mulatu Astatke and a selection of the country's finest ensembles. This record is essentially another "Best Of..", featuring a selection of tracks taken from the 60's & 70's golden period of Ethio… Read more
**Now available again on Heavenly Sweetness** Utterly enchanting Ethiopiques edition, starring the totally unique saxophone sound of Gétatchèw Mèkurya. The label says "Gétatchèw Mèkurya is probably the most revered veteran of Ethiopian saxophone. A real giant, both physically and musically. Not only is he at the very top level of Ethiopian saxophonists, but he is the "inventor" of an extremely distinctive musical "style"." The album features ten of Gétatchèw Mèkurya's arrangements, blowing a snaking, smoky and hypnotic stream of notes over very minimal backing of… Read more