Thursday, 23 January 2014
Dub-frayed and concrète techno convolutions from French duo, Kaumwald. Originally self-released and now rebirthed on wax by Opal Tapes, 'Hantasive' yields a grotty, deglazed grip of sounds serrating analogue sources and textures with digital synthesis techniques. Bass-heavy rhythms knot and untangle in unstable ecologies torn ragged between "real" acoustic resonances and spitting, arrhythmic electronics ranging from spasmodic pockets of strangeness to lurching, effluent texturhythms recalling MB gone 3D and passages of barely-tamed psychoactive swirl recalling Decimus. The label makes the most tan… Read more
**White vinyl** Positive Centre continues to plough a single-minded style of slow techno doom on his sophomore EP for Sigha's Our Circula Sound label. As with like-minded spirits Samuel Kerridge, Andy Stott, Low Jack and Fishermen, the Berlin-based producer is eking out bleak new worlds at the nether end of the tempo scale, exchanging uptempo pace for a richer source of dark, synth heavy energy. His sound is concentrated yet spacious, driving in with the grinding rhythm and spectral mystery of 'Hiding Knives' beside the evil, leering drones and head-high swagger of 'Field Of Tongues' on… Read more
"The fuzz/psych/folk legend known as Michael Yonkers shows yet another musical color on this über-rare private press home-recording from 1971-72. While working as a forklift operator and truck driver with a bunch of Minnesota cowboys, Yonkers was inspired to do this oddly countrified set that begs comparison to outsider hillbillies like Peter Grudzien and The Legendary Stardust Cowboy, as well as more beloved longhair outlaws like Townes van Zandt & Kris Kristofferson. And then there are the songs performed for children…"
*Beautiful 2LP limited edition vinyl release in a full-color heavy-duty gatefold jacket of the long out-of-print CD from 2007* The first volume in Sublime Frequencies' series of 'Molam' releases took us on a journey through a lesser heard area of Thai music, a kind of country folk music from the rural northeast of Thailand which centres primarily on male and female singers (Molam literally means 'master singer') and the khaen (a bamboo mouth organ) and phin (a lute-like instrument). Here we see the style diversify as it hits the 1970s and 1980s and introduces the sou… Read more
*Includes a free digital download of the entire album redeemable from the label* "Omo Lewa by Nigerian born band leader and multi-instrumentalist Peter King came into the world in 1976. From start to finish, King weaves afrobeat, highlife, and jazz with mesmerizing skill. Long out of print, this album contains some of the prolific artist's finest work. Highlights like “Afro-Funk” and “Ajo” have been singeing slipmats via recent African compilations and whetting the appetites of numerous music fans. As prices on the collector's market reiterate, this pent up demand has made Omo Lewa Peter King's m… Read more
First ever vinyl issue of Kiwi legend and core Flying Nun Peter Gutteridge's amazing, one and only solo album, originally released in 1989 on tape via Bruce Russell's Xpressway. I'll be honest; what I know about New Zealand's end-of-the-earth rock scene I could write on the back of a rizla packet, but this, like most other Dead C and related goodness i've encountered makes me feel guilty that I haven't explored the scene much further. Aside from his actions in The Clean, The Great Unwashed, and The Chills among others, Peter's only solo record, 'Pure' showcases a stripped-down, rudimentary soun… Read more
Dave Clarke, The Exaltics, Aubrey and The Traveller (Shed) rough up and deep-rave the sleek contours of Marcel Fengler's 'Fokus' album tracks. The Baron (does anyone even call him that any more?) Dave Clarke rags 'Sky Pushing' with gravelly bass and some searing, peak-time synth shocks, whilst The Exaltics impress with a more technoid take on their usual darkside electro, remixing 'Mayria' to a rampant rhythm and bleak electro pads. Aubrey adds layeres of white noise and demented synthlines to 'Trespass', and Shed raves up 'Jaz' as The Traveller.
Slow-mo breakbeat 'ardcore and acid dub from anonymous heads for Red 7. The formula is simple but effectively well done on both sides: 'Royal Rave' rides squashed Reese bass and breaks with classic Bambaataa samples and slung rave vamps; 'Rubadub Style' rocks on a chewy 303 bass, big bad subs and crushed breaks like some vintage Depth Charge joint.
After reappearing from a 3 year hiatus with his Jealous God 12", James Ruskin reasserts his credentials with three killer techno adventures on his legendary Blueprint label. Up front you'll find the grand 4/4 techno architecture of 'Slit' with its atmospheric, noise-sculpted intro and outro bookending a masterclass in pure, muscular UK techno built to destroy big rooms and basements alike. Down town, he indulges his experimental side, but not at the expense of functionality, with the roiling churn and 'Keynell'-esque progressions of 'Wisdom Of Youth' and the equally Autechrian arrangement of 'Emotion Erode'. Not the kind of stuff you hear every day…
Lakosa reprises a fruitful relationship with Rick Grant on two deep and rugged London techno-house grooves backed with Severn Beach (James Fox) and Kornel Kovacs remixes. The follow-up to Grant and Lakosa's 2nd Drop ace treads similar ground at the smokier, hypnotic end of house and techno with the slinky shift and blue chord progression of 'Static', and a pumping, swinging, dubbed-out sound with 'Temptations'. The remixers hear contrasting takes on 'Temptations: James Fox's tuffer Severn Beach alias teases the techno elements in a more twisted, psychedelic direction with deft vo… Read more
**Includes digital download voucher redeemable from the label** Ace garage punk grunge pops picked up by Captured Tracks for reissue. 'The Feeling' was originally unleashed on Couple Skate Records in 2012 and now slots neatly in its new home alongside charming slackers such as Mac Demarco, Beach Fossils and co. Our highlights have to be the super lo-fi joys of 'Gentle Movement Towards Sensual Liberation' and 'Eon Of Love' or the dirgy grunger 'Trashworld'. Sure you'll all have your own favourites, though.
A lovely addendum of sorts to Bibio's 'Silver Wilkinson' album. It opens with pastoral album track 'Dye The Water Green' and proceeds to include archival material such as the sepia-toned 'Dinghy', written in 2006 with Richard Roberts ov Letherette, plus 'Down To The Sound', and 'A Thousand Syllables' along with the one-take improvisation of 'Carbon Wulf' - a reprise of album cut 'Wulf' - and 'The Sp9inney View of Hinckley Point', his first track recorded with live drums, as opposed to sampled and chopped on an MPC.
**Cherry-picked punk/post-punk anthology compiled by Soul Jazz including bullets such as Puncture's 'Mucky Pup' and Eric Random's '23 Skidoo** '"Soul Jazz Records’ new album ‘Punk 45: There Is No Such Thing As Society’ is the second volume in their ‘Punk 45’ series, released to follow on from Soul Jazz Records’ recent massive deluxe 400 page ‘Punk 45s’ cover art book edited and compiled by Jon Savage (author of the seminal book on punk, ‘England… Read more
Grimy, technoid feminine pressure from the renamed Twwth (fka Teeth) on his and Desto's excellent Signal Life label. As with their previous editions from Visionist, Kowton, LAS and themselves, the 'Thousand Million EP' finds a sweet spot between sleek European techno, gruff UK grime and the rudeness of US club music. Whilst built around similar elements of gut-punch bass, rippling 808s and iced-out stabs, the vocal samples make a clear dichotomy: topside 'Naomi XX' sweetens gully swagger with a darkly sensual breakdown and female R&B stab intoning "it's automatic", whilst 'Boy You Down With… Read more
Prostitutes proceeds his Diagonal EP with another salvo of grotty, throbbing machine music for the Avian-affiliated Mira imprint. Blessed with one of the best titles of recent times, 'Truncheon Cadence (Part One)' hems close to that stoically purist sound James Donadio has established with his self-released LP and issues for Opal Tapes and Digitalis over the last couple of years. It includes some of his strongest club tracks in the rolling industrial thump of 'Led Up Garden Paths' and the dubbed-out techno skanker 'Odd Dog End', but our favourites have to be the skudged, grungy… Read more
Thursday, 16 January 2014
Luke Younger's Helm returns to PAN with four vital incursions marking his first new material since the sessions that birthed his acclaimed 'Impossible Symmetry' and 'Silencer' releases these last couple of years. Since those releases Younger has been hard at work building his Alter label into one of the most interesting imprints around whilst also honing a petrifying, improvised live set that's turned our bones to stone every time we've heard it. 'The Hollow Organ' delivers four tracks of spirit-grinding constructs gleaned from a visceral palette of tormented machine voices, sub-zero drones and… Read more
Hospital Productions return with their first release of the year, a heavy 30-minute session of layered drone and tormented, bass-heavy bombast from Max Gudmunson's Virile Games project, now available on vinyl for the first time after a sold-out micro edition of cassettes in 2013. Operating somewhere between his label-mate Lussuria's gothic ambience, the ear-bleaching concrète of Helm, and the more blown-out cinematic visions of Leyland Kirby, 'Wounded Laurel' oscillates between sublime and wretched with a gripping night-time narrative. Opener 'Death And Rebirth Of Adonis' sets the scene w… Read more
**Gatefold double "swamp green" vinyl reissue with download code** Zombi's debut album proper, 'Cosmos' (2004) is given a fittingly plush vinyl reissue for the first time in seven years. A masterclass in cinematic prog excess, on 'Cosmos' Steve Moore and A.E. Paterra set their synths to stun and drums to trample, breaking orbit like a juggernaut shuttle burning up billions of dollars worth of head-fuel. This stuff touches quadrants that other space prog albums don't reach. Recommended!
Noirish jazz jungle and electro-dub from FaltyDL - his first new productions since his well received 'Hardcourage' album for Ninja Tune. 'Danger' is a straight ace, coming off something like Rainer Veil distilling twenty years of Dego into 4 minutes of tape saturated pads and deftly spliced breaks. 'King Brute' is more screwed and fugged-up, operating in that hazy nexus between Actress, Itinerant Dubs and Kassem Mosse with kinetic, morphing dub FX applied to salty electro pings and groggiest bass wriggle.
**Remastered reissue includes DVD and Download Code Redeemable From The Label* ‘Drinking Gasoline’ was released in 1985, consisting of four songs from the legendary ‘Gasoline In Your Eye’ videocassette. These songs rank among Cabaret Voltaire’s more infectious compositions. ‘Gasoline In Your Eye’ is now included as a DVD together with both the CD and the LP of ‘Drinking Gasoline’, featuring videos shot and edited by groundbreaking director Peter Care and Richard H Kirk. ‘Gasoline In Your Eye’ DVD includes ‘Sensoria’ and promotional videos for ‘I Want You’ and ‘Just Fascination’. Ca… Read more
Night School Records pick up Love Cult's fearsome follow-up to their chilling 'Fingers Crossed' LP for Public Information. Hailing from the Russian Republic Of Karelia, up near Finland, the duo of Anya Kuts and Ivan Afanasyev aka Love Cult have coined the apt term "no tech", short for northern technology, to describe their deconstructed hybrids of cold, ceramic textures, black metal atmosphere and machine-driven rhythms found on the 'Know EP'. It's a marked progression from their Public Information album, far more focussed on bass heavy rhythmic patterns, but not at the expense of their signature, … Read more
Night Slugs' Helix slips into his DJ Vague alias to 'fess up three banging house trax on Australia's Templar Sound label. Up top, he drops his Soundhack-meets-Paul Johnson-esque 'Porsche Trax 1' and 'Porsche Trax 2' which have both been knocking around the net for a bit now, whilst flipside he dispenses the pounding Roulé style smasher, 'Porsche Trax 3'.
Uniquely dark and rugged New York techno-house trips from the subBASS Soundsystem. Following up their crooked 'Deadly Structures' 12" for Trilogy Tapes, Spider & Marshallito go darker than ever before with the near-beatless scape of crying babies and LFO wafted subbass on 'Worldly Suffering' and roll out skippy, gritty techno with 'Enemy Of God' on the A-side. Flip it for a bruised and skewed jacker with demented bassline in '7.06', and a down-slow, funked-up ace, 'Fallen Angel'.
*Includes download code redeemable from the label* Mogwai follow their acclaimed OST for 'Les Revenants with their first studio album since 2011. 'Rave Tapes' is the thematic follow-up to 'Hardcore Will Never Die, But You Will'. It was recorded at the group's Castle Of Doom studio in Glasgow along with go-to producer Paul Savage and revolves around ten tracks of precision post-rock augmented with synths and processing.
**Grey vinyl** Steve Moore and A.E. Paterra's modern space rock classic from 2006 reissued. "Surface to Air teems with the stirring, trance-inducing deluges of rhythm and sound the duo is renowned for. Swelling waves of melodic synth ride atop a broad bass and drum foundation. Sequences of repetition roll, build, and unfold with the measured patience of master artisans. Less an album than a moving, breathing mass of symphonic sound; Surface to Air creates boundless moving pictures that are nothing short of breathtaking."
Thursday, 09 January 2014
*Includes poster insert and download code* "Brisbane quartet Blank Realm return with their most blistering release to date. 'Grassed Inn' expands further the fluorescent pop leanings that shone through last year's critically acclaimed 'Go Easy'. The result is an album packed with soaring psych melodies, dark love-stained lyrics and one of the sharpest pop records to emerge from the current Australian underground renaissance. Having moved on from their more open-ended experimental beginnings, Blank Realm have veered towards songs in the manner of late period Big Star, The Zombies, or Echo and … Read more
Blissful dream pop single from the celebrated South-African duo and a couple gorgeous remixes too. 'Muizenberg' blends highlife, heavenly synth and dappled North American guitar sounds, but the key is Emmanuel Nzaramba's feather-light falsetto vocals. Then in comes Seiji mixing sweet pianos and surround-sound electronic dazzle, followed by The 2 Bears, who come up with a nice long maximalist house jam that has a really warm feeling running through it. Nicely done.