Thursday, 25 April
**Housed in screen-printed jacket** Sub-heavy and shifty deep house electronics from the Glasgow-based trio featuring members of Golden Teacher, Silk Cut and Dam Mantle. Rooted in studio improvisations and polished to a patently High Sheen, four grooves roll and swing with a elusively and all-too-rare fluid quality, from the seductively pendulous 'Motivation' to the grubbing, polychromatic vortex of 'Mt. Florida' and on into the refined but frayed jazz-house funk of '1178' and the freakish Detroit-style experimentation of 'Urn' reminding of some mad Three Chairs or Anthony Shakir move.
Menche's 'Marriage Of Metals' is a visceral and captivating investigation of the Indonesian Gamelan's harmonic properties. Given full access to The Venerable Showers Of Beauty ensemble's rare and ancient gongs at Lewis and Clark College, Portland Oregon, Menche made recordings of their rich acoustic basses and resonant clangour which were subsequently processed into these two giant slabs of elemental din. The original source tones radiant at the centre of both pieces but their pealing wave emissions are transformed into dense, fuggy squall at an illusory distance creating a chimeric … Read more
**Intra-galactic synth spectacular spiralling between Italo wormholes, celestial devotionals and psychedelic electro** "Vintage synthesizer music has ballooned from a fringe interest into something approaching an outright renaissance across the past half-decade, but few wield as much radical mastery in the realm as Jonas Reinhardt. After a couple years experimenting with group arrangements, Jesse Reiner (Reinhardt's mastermind / alter ego) returned the project in 2011 to its solitary roots, birthing the distant moon terrarium Music for the Tactile Dome, the Klaus Schulze-spawn The P… Read more
Kaleidoscopic kosmische colours and rhythm from Ben Billington's Quicksails for the wonderful Spectrum Spools. With 'Mayville Dream' the Chicago resident and multi instrumentalist routes his experience as drummer for Circuit de Yeux and underground free-jazz unit Tiger Hatchery into nine spiralling vortices of strobing rhythmelody and motorik syncopation straddling the worlds of psychedelic rock, ritual dance musics and private press weirdness with chaotic, joyful delirium. Imagine Shackleton meets Bee Mask round at Sculpture's place and you'll have a fairly lucid idea of what's going on here.
Lean, hypnotic, kinetic remixes of classic Terrence Dixon trax. Berghain poster-boy Ben Klock does his svelte, gripping techno thing with aerodynamic gait and sensuous shuffle, at its best on the subtly morphing dub. Rejected co-founder Edwin Oosterwal's takes is more driving, pensive.
One of the UK's dopest deep house producers does what he does best. These may be the rudest, rawest cuts in his catalogue. A-side, 'If U Believe' locks off a wiggly one with sparingly used but crucial vocals for the shuffling crew; 'Wacky Racers' gets loose and freaky with well filtered samples inna classic Anthony Shakir style. B-side, with 'Wise Root' he pushes into that rarified 5am headspace owned by Theo Parrish or STL, but with his patented sorta sensuality and patience; 'Mo Bella' seals the deal with a proper Chicago/Detroit disco-soul cut-up.
**Twelve crucial cuts of swaggering '70s Nigerian dance music. Double gatefold edition includes download code redeemable from the label** As this compilation on Brighton's Soundway label adeptly illustrates, Nigeria in the 1970s was a melting pot of different cultural influences, both from African sources and the wider influence of music from other corners of the world - most notably jazz and blues. This double-disc sized compilation draws together 12 tracks that have never before been reissued, offering a unique slant on how … Read more
New York's Contakt sets off two deep-playing technohouse moves for San Francisco's Icee Hot crew, backed with Robert Hood and Ghosts On Tape remixes. 'Nobody Else' is a hard-bodied update of classic, haughty NYC house sounds; 'Tessera 04' is dubbier, more Berlin-influenced. Ghosts On Tape chop-up 'Nobody Else' with filigree breaks and acid-based swing, but the one you need is Robert Hood's heads-down, muscular remix of 'Tessela 04', perfectly arranged for deep-time techno play.
Another dose of outernational rhythm science from Burnt Friedman and Can sticksman Jaki Liebezeit. This is the fifth volume of Secret Rhythms and by now the interplay between the duo has grown near-telepathic, the serpentine grooves they generate - from drums, metal percussion and synthesizers - complex yet thrillingly reduced, free of any superfluous phrasing. Guest contributors’ guitar, bass and woodwind add some nice tonal colour to proceedings, but rhythm, always rhythm, is the focal point. Mark Ernestus remixed Friedman & Liebezeit jam a couple of years in the past… Read more
Pinch & Roska reprise the London-Bristol connection for Tectonic. their collaborative 'Should Rolla' hinges on a darker, restrained halfstep lean with rolling congas and vintage-sounding '06 bass moves, proper dread stalker styles. Solo, Roska's 'Asbestos' indulges his darkest tastes to killer effect with sinuous, minimalist syncopation accentuated by crashing snares and staggered, technoid kicks inna gloomy chamber dub.
There are flashes of excellence on this record, the work of a former model Carmen Hilestad, which is styled very much after post-grunge alt.rock, from Beat Happening through to Murray Street-era Sonic Youth, but approaches it with a contemporary Scandi-pop sensibility, a bit of early MTV / AM radio swagger and crisp production befitting its home on Smalltown Supersound. If there’s a criticism to be made, it’s that it never quite settles down in to one thing or the other - Hilestad doesn’t seem to know if she wants to be Kim Gordon or Chrissie Hynde, Carrie Brownstein or Lykke Li. This indecisi… Read more
Halocyan catch ASC indulging his IDM tastes on the 'Sonic Assault EP', backed with Kangding Ray, Mike Slott and Chrissy Murderbot remixes. Highlights occur in the fractured, '97 Ae styles of 'Fourier System' and his bittersweet stepper 'Sympathy', or Kangding Ray's darker techno take on 'Sonic Assault'.
**Includes digital download code redeemable from the label** Wicked dubstep junglism from OG South London producer. Includes the bustling, polyrhythmic carnival hustle 'n shuffle of 'Spider Monkey' and the inner-city jungle jazz dub of 'Rainy Street Light' with its Burial or AGCG vibes.
High-intensity techno workouts from J. Tijn on Untold's Pennyroyal label. Following the course of his 'Jack 2' 12" he leaves no prisoners with an aggressive A-side pounding backed by one kinkier swinger and a brutal, Belgian-sounding stomper.
London's Church clubnight and label follow up Happa's debut 12" with two thick club tools by Rumah, backed with James Fox and Apes & Seb Wildwood remixes. Both originals fall into that hulking, square-bassed techno-house category eked out by Boddika and Joy O whilst remixes spin off into slower, deep-housed styled dub-chord swing.
Reissue of party-ready dancehall dub case produced by Chris Cracknell and Henry "Junjo" Lawes. Features the digi-infected dread dub of 'Can't Take Another World War'.
Diverse techno/house session including smart Grenier and MRSK remixes. Brooklyn-based Divvorce turns out the urging menace of 'E1' for the Traversable Wormhole fans, plus a slinkier house roller 'E2' featuring earworming vocal hook by Hound Scales. Remixing 'E2', Grenier comes up with a tribalist techno variant, and MRSK gets funky with the acid on a remix of 'E3'.
**Ships Friday - White Vinyl** Trippier, kinkier deep house plays by Canada's Kevin McPhee. His A-side 'Version One' borrows vibes from classic Relief and Boo Williams styles to a bumpty outcome; B-side 'It's What She Wants' kneads in some swinging Afro-beat drums and kalimba-like timbres to come off like older Kassem Mosse or Workshop grooves, and 'P1:P2' slackens the line for a screwed beatdown wiggle.
*The legendary 5th Burial Mix release, now pressed up on 12" - as unmissable as they come...*
Thursday, 18 April
*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
**Timely reissue of an exalted electronic classic, presented on vinyl for the first time and including download code redeemable from the label** Way back in 1998 Isan issued this fresh new template for melodic instrumental electronica. Borrowing ideas from classic Kosmische and the canniest Canterbury pop before it, and offering a frothier option compared to the increasingly complex and austere arrangements of the Skam cabal or Rephlex and Warp-style IDM, 'Beautronics' was, and still is, a triumph of analog subtlety and naif sensitivity and was no less than a staple part of our… Read more
Finally, I think we're beginning to hear the best of L-Vis as he drops the tacky nu-boogie flavours in favour of a sleek but rugged futurist sounds. Following the lead of his Night Slugs cohort, Jam City, he yields three holo'ed and cyber-haunted 'Ballads', svelte and sheer contoured tech grooves swiping away any extraneous melody or drums to leave behind suggestive, body co-ordinating drum hints and synth comtrails for the 'floor. 'Ballad 4D' works a paucity of elements - flanging hi-hats, detuned pads and bass - in a tessellating rubik's cube groove, and 'Not Mad' comes off like hyper-boogie for… Read more
Rustie making powerr moves on Numbers! On his first new single in over a year, Russell Whyte breaks off what could be considered a demented cousin to Baueer's 'Harlem Shake' - that is, if it had been brought up on a diet of John Hughes movies and sugar puffs - with the dancefloor hero stance of 'Triadzz' and its ultra-peakin' trance-pop crescendos. And if that doesn't have your party convinced, there's the martial bounce of 'Slasherr' with a cavalcade of ceilidh snares and hyper-swaggered Scottish melody. More fun than a barrel of homebrewed buckie.
**Edition of 500 copies with double-sided insert. Includes download code redeemable from the label** LA's Bestial Mouths follow up an excellent debut LP for Dais on this satisfying split with recent Downwards and Mannequin contributors, Deathday. The Mouths' ride Boudica-like with Sioux hollers over scorched gothic EBM rhythms and synth noise on 'White Eyes' and continue to spill blood with a battery of martial toms and explosive snares against a bellicose backdrop in 'Hollowed' - big tip for fans of Lydia Lunch, Light Asylum, or Diamanda Galas. Deathday follow an aforemention… Read more
**Edition of 500 copies on marbled grey wax. Includes download code redeemable from the label** Deathday serve a chilling debut album of coldwave synth-pop for Desire and LA's Sweating Tapes. Ripe for cyber-punks and bedroom-bound misanthropes, 'Deathday' features seven cuts powered by marching drums, sour, detuned synths and some of the most miserable off key vocals, trudging from the miserable thump of 'Sister' to the jagged, monotone synth stabs and sci-fi intrigue of 'Cold Room' and the phetish, uptempo paranoia of 'Charles Joseph Whitman' to the squally blasts and gothic traits of 'Blood On A … Read more
**Hand-stamped white label** Deeper, druggy house on Sylphe's sophomore trip. Holdie Gawn handles an extended roller landing somewhere between Villalobos-style tech house and Freunde Der Familie's psychoactive dubs in the A-side 'Distinc'. B-side, Micawber's 'Satellite Systems' synchs supple subbass oscillations and offset rimshots for deep space 6am gyrations.
**Orange wax with A4 insert** Classier club grease from the cats at Dixon Avenue Basement Jams. With one ass cheek in early '90s Chicago and the other in 2013 Glasgow, this analogy could get pretty horrible but the mysterious O.D.D keeps it sweet with four tracks working up a sweat from horny basslines a la Abe Duque or classic Cajual oiled up and rubbed against grooving, martial drum machines and infectious siren synth pulses. One fo' the late night swingers.
**Includes digital download code redeemable from the label** Compelling third album of eccentric, operatic Finnish electro-pop from Heidi Kilpelainen. Apparently inspired by birdsong while on holiday in her homeland, she creates an otherworldly journey through laidback, hypnotic rhythms and lucid yet bizarre song-writing recalling a wealth of music we already love, from Group Rhoda to The Knife/Fever Ray, Kate Bush or Planningtorock. It should come as little surprise, then, that Christoffer Berg, producer for The Knife, Depeche Mode and Little Dragon, is the man behind the scenes. Check!
'Japandorf' is the swansong album by late, legendary Neu! drummer and guitarist, Klaus Dinger - inventor of the "motorik" beat - with fine artists from the Japanese community of his hometown, Düsseldorf. Recorded between 2000-2008 at his Zeeland Studio on the Netherlands coast, and in his home studio near Düsseldorf airport, it captures a brimming sense of positivity in 12 tracks of signature krautrock chug and melodic guitars matched by vocals oscillating between gruff German and chirpy, higher Japanese registers. The spirit which drove Neu!'s early music from the kraut underground … Read more
**Includes digital download code redeemable from the label** Tech-trancey and swinging bass grooves from Rupert Taylor's XXXY for Swansea's Ten Thousand Yen. 'Progression' meshes a technicoloured moiré of arpeggios to snappy snares and round, precise sub pressure; 'Thinkin Bout' opens a folder of cowbells and downpitched vocal stabs in sharply contoured 2-step/house flux.