Thursday, 02 May 2013
Agoria, Robag Wruhme, Will Saul & October line up to remix German dancefloor celeb, Michael Mayer's 'Mantasy' trax. Frenchman Agoria plays to the big rooms with a sweeping, uplifting Sunlune mix of 'Good Times', Robag Wruhme does his curvaceous, whirring, melodic tech-house thing with a Paavo And Veita Rehand of 'Baumhaus', and Will Saul & October drop the bassline of 'Mantasy' to bowel worrying levels in a ruggedly minimalist, hollowed out swingjack killer.
**Includes CD copy of the album inside** Deerhunter return with their seventh (or thereabouts) studio album; it’s obviously manna from heaven for their many devotees, but will it win them any new converts? It actually might, you know: to their credit, they’ve moved away from the washed-out, colour-bled shoegaze sound that's defined them for most of their career; Bradford Cox’s songs are now more robust, and the performances - bolstered by a second guitarist and new bassist - feel full of fight, harder to ignore or forget. The marvellous ‘Neon Junkyard’ and ‘Blue Agent’ sound like White Album-er… Read more
Jeff Samuel and Ryan Hemsworth remix Rhye's blue-eyed neo-soul for swinging dancefloors. Widely touted yung producer Ryan Hemsworth gives the highlight with a sharply cut-up (but not glitchy) re-squeeze amplifying the original's R&B burn with electricked bass and tight trap fills keeping it sweet and sticky. Berlin's Jeff Samuel balances a filtered vocal on melodic bassline and driving tech-house shuffle.
*Single Sided Lazer Etched Disc* Dirty Three's Mick Turner meets the Bonny Prince, Will Oldham on a trio of "spirit devotionals for a new century." Reprising the relationship they formed back in 2000-2001 with a live album and single, 'Get On Jolly', these two genteel men of their respective outbacks make a sweet pairing, swaying between wheezy organ and brushed drum tumbles to elegant waltz with their world weary yet still-clinging croons assisted by Dirty Three drummer Jim White and backing vocals by Angel Olsen.
**Includes digital download code redeemable from the label** A welcome return for Akron/Family, proffering a potent and expanded vision of open-structured cosmic rock. According to the band, the album's canyon-straddling, star-gazing scale is inspired by the landscape-obsessed, deeply American sci-fi imaginings of Frank Herbert,"the plots within plots of Dune mirrored in many layers of sound." This is a proper epic, make no mistake, and the band sound more fucked-up, grizzled and committed than before; at the same time they've evidently matured as songwriters, performers and arrangers, deliv… Read more
Nick Edwards metamorphs and diffuses from Ekoplekz into Ensemble Skalectrix to issue the riveting plunderphonic turntablism of 'Trainwrekz' on Editions Mego. Now armed with a stack of dusty wax and two turntables alongside his matrix of pedals and "sound-shaping devices", Ensemble Skalectrix resulted from three experimental sessions recorded in november 2012 and lands somewhere between Jeff Keen's blatz-techno and Maurizio Bianchi's phosphorous synth noise sludge, crystallising in six tracks equally informed by free improvisation, aleatoric strategy, musique concrète, hauntolo… Read more
Slick, bassquaking hip-hop 2013-style from Black Daisy and Unknown Shapes. 'Used To Give a Fk' is custom-built for the low-riders and hipster ballers, motored by 808-thunderclaps, cartwheeling arpeggios a la Rustie's 'Bad Science' and an insistent, codeine-paralysed vocal sample. It's a tad overcooked for our tastes but it comfortably achieves what it sets out to do and is worth checking if you've been feeling the more trap-flavoured productions that have been proliferating like mice of late. On 'Rick Ross' they pay tribute to the titular MC with a butch, bugged-out jeep… Read more
Thursday, 25 April 2013
Mark Nelson's cherished Pan American quietly slip back into our consciousness as a band proper, now adding the estimable talents of Steven Hess (Cleared/Haptic) and Nelson's former Labradford bandmate, Robert Donne to the project. While Nelson assuredly handles all production, the live feel is definitely more prominent, folding in the patter of Hess's percussion and Bobby Donne's languid bass at the centre of seven beautifully diffuse soundscapes bordering on the frontier lands of post-rock, dub techno and ambient electronica, yet never clearly falling within any one sector. Every … Read more
Another crucial side on Stephen O'Malley's Ideologic Organ, prised from some putrid cave deep under the underground. This time it's a double-vinyl edition of Wold's Freermasonry, the first time on wax for a work originally issued by Profound Lore Records on CD in 2011. The Saskatchewan troupe, led by one Fortress Crookedjaw, take no prisoners and sure as hell don't meet you in the middle - rather they offload a barrage of putrid, zero-fidelity, utterly addictive black metal-flavoured noise, anchored by vocals that have to count among the most flesh-creeping and downright unpleasant we've heard on re… Read more
Whoa, even by EVOL's usual standards this is a weird and wired experiment in sonic slime-slinging, mastered by Russell Haswell and cut by Rashad Becker at D&M. For the best part of three years Stephen Sharp and Roc Jiménez de Cisneros have been desconstructing rave music in novel and unorthodox ways, homing in on bizarre tropes in the music that we've glibly come to accept as generic, disrupting its regular patterns, drawing attention to its kinks and fissures, and generally f**king with our heads: a process they formally describe as Rave Synthesis. The music of Proper Headshrinker was origi… Read more
*The legendary 10th Burial Mix release, now pressed up on 12" - as unmissable as they come...*
**10" + free CD** In summer 2012 multi-instrumentalist Peter Broderick made a series of recordings with his microphone shy father, Steven, aka Pop. 'Broderick & Broderick' documents their few evenings spent together in Berlin picking out old, familiar melodies, Steven on nylon six-string and Peter on Violin and whatever else was in his hands. The typically lovely results were later looped, cut-up and re-arranged by Peter and mailed to his sister, Heather Woods-Broderick, who later added vocal layers, percussion and organ to what would become a present for their mutual Pop, and now appears as the record before you. Double lovely stuff.
"Early in 2013, Error Broadcast released Soosh's critically acclaimed LP Colour is Breathe. Now the Scottish producer returns with the remixes album, a collection that offers ten fresh interpretations of standout tracks from Colour is Breathe. A quartet of established names reshapes "For You". UK-based rapper DELS and his producer Eli-T make it raw and lyrical, whilst Dam Mantle lends his trademark energy to the same track. US beat scene veteran devonwho pares back the song to its very pulse, leaving Synkro room to let it kick and snap. Slowwkid betrays his newcomer status with a hazy… Read more
Bambooman serves two swagger riddims for the Sonic Router site's recording wing. Top-side is the Dabrye-styled hip hop bump and Ras G-like atmospheres of 'Fields'; flipside is a tidy nod to Dilla at his dustiest, with the fuzz-between-the-wires bump 'n crackle vignette, 'Hollowed'.
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.
**Transparent Vinyl** Stunningly heavy, focussed tech-step workouts from a deadly tag team. Yung blood Killawatt meets the experienced Kryptic Minds duo in some of their finest styles, playing it super restrained with the pendulous cool of 'Swung Operations' before coming off like T++ meets Fis with crusted textures and gyroscopic dub dynamics of 'Reaching Throughout' and the supremely adroit 'step of 'Cunning Juncture'. Total no brainer for those that know - massive recommendation.
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
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'.
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.
*The legendary 5th Burial Mix release, now pressed up on 12" - as unmissable as they come...*
Thursday, 18 April 2013
*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
**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
**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.
'Rites' is the chilling solo debut proper by Sri Lanka-born, Bristol-based composer and sound designer, Paul Jebanasam. It arrives via his own Subtext label - home to a series of bracing recent releases by Emptyset and Roly Porter - to deliver a payload of gothic electro-acoustic composition blending neo-classical, black metal and electronic drone traits with an insoluble, elemental alchemy. It should come as little surprise that he's also been known to handle sound design for film, but 'Rites' is concerned with far loftier, artful ideas as the label's press expounds; "Rites brings together a un… Read more