Wednesday, 02 June 2010
Multifarious manic mashup business from Barcelona's four-headed beast, C156. With one foot in Sheffield Niche, Cauto, The Gardener, Dr Res and Drome manhandle chunks of jungle, dubstep, raved up techno and hiphop to craft the title tracks, while 'Can A Leprous Be Trendy?' begs a vital question that never gets answered and 'Latin Mayhem' abandons any preconceptions of sexy Spaniards with a glut of Tigerbeat styled glitchcore. Fans of Squire Of Gothos, Kanji Kinetic or Dolby Anol should be rubbing their third nipple with joy right now.
Argon enlist Distinction and Blasta to give Von D and Zhakee's 'Bon' a pair of summery overhauls. Blasta's mix is suitably frilly, with agile boogie-prog keys over roller's dubstep rhythms, and Distinction takes it later into the night with deep hued chords and a nutricious drop to provide 100% of your subbass RDA.
Tuesday, 01 June 2010
**Contains alternate track listing to the CD version** The Simonsound is a sonic collaboration between Simon James and Matt Ford aka DJ Format. 'Reverse Engineering' is their tribute to 50s and 60s "space music" (the sort of Moog and theremin saturated music espoused by Raymond Scott, The Radiophonic Workshop et al) mixed with a mature B-Boy's sense of intrepid exploration beyond the annals of funk and soul. We can find analogs for this style in the madcap mixes of Finders Keeper's Andy Votel and Dom Thomas or more accurately the orchestrations of Barry Adamson, reflected in The Si… Read more
Thursday, 27 May 2010
Sam Shalabi returns to his Land Of Kush project with this new concept album tackling notions of shame and sexuality. Monogamy follows on from Shalabi's excellent Thomas Pynchon-inspired Against The Day LP expanding the title of his ensemble with the Egyptian Light Orchestra suffix especially for this release. There are some twenty-four musicians and sound artists gathered for Monogamy, and you can certainly hear the scale of the endeavour; tapping into Montreal's experimental scene Shalabi co-ordinates players who clash together various Middle Eastern and Western mu… Read more
Apparently, the Hat City Intuitive are regulars on the Danbury, Connecticut free improv circuit, although the ramifications of such a statement are probably largely unknown to anyone who doesn't live in Danbury, Connecticut. Here's a (Wikipedia derived) fact for you: this Danbury place used to produce one quarter of all America's hat supply (seriously), hence it acquiring the nickname, Hat City. The band, as is featured on this album, includes such curiously monikered personnel as Sax Blabbath and Sunday Ra, but perhaps more notably, Thurston Moore crops up, laying down so… Read more
There Is No Enemy is the seventh studio album from alt-rock veterans Built To Spill and finds them regaining some of their acclaimed '90s form. In terms of straight-ahead, intelligent indie rock, these relative old-timers sound incredibly fresh, putting a good many current generation bands to shame on the likes of opening track 'Aisle 13' with its effortless college rock classicism and concise hookiness. More connoisseur riffing arrives on simple, yet deftly efficient midtempo numbers like 'Done' and even the ballads prove memorable: 'Life's A Dream' recalls Weezer's 'Say It Ain't … Read more
Wednesday, 26 May 2010
**Translucent Green Vinyl - Limited Edition of 1000 copies** For this new Latitudes release All Tomorrow's Parties mainstay Alexander Tucker joins forces with Dean Garwood, resulting in three terrific stretched out jams. Perhaps it's got something to do with the fusion of prog influences with jazz and psychedelia, but stretches of this bring to mind the Canterbury scene of the '60s and '70s from which Robert Wyatt and Soft Machine came to prominence. 'Golden Dome' slips into a bluesy cello riff (if that's not too much of a contradiction in terms) that loops in a gu… Read more
Tuesday, 25 May 2010
DJ Madd mixes his turbo-charged dub with flitting techno chords and atmospheres on 'Detroit Skank' while Ikonika submerges DJ Madd in deep blue digital seas with her remix of 'Flexd'. We'd draw straight for the ace Ikonika mix where she balances a galloping dubstep rhythm with fluid arrangements and a layered melancholy. Recommended.
Baobinga is the common factor in these two Brizzle-rooted romps also featuring Ginz and Cosmin TRG. 'The Good Stank' pairs him up with Ginz on a reinforced purple halfstepper sagging under the weight of ten-tonne drums and bass. 'I Get Ruff' pairs up with Cosmin TRG to work out a harder Funky variant with drums bordering on Breaks and chopped divavox to bring it back from the edge and onto London-friendly dancefloors.
Monday, 24 May 2010
Schatrax, .xtrak, KiNK and The Subliminal Kid give excellent reworks of recent Matt O'Brien trax on the latest OffKey 12". Most impressive is Schatrax's dancer's special mix of 'Dodaso', proving yet again why heads in-the-know love his stuff so much. Next up, .xtrak gives a squashed and dirty take on the same track. Very original. On the flip, KiNK does a fat acid-psyched house mix of 'Gauntlet' and Roll The Dice/Fever Ray collaborator The Subliminal Kid gives a prime piece of dark and shiny minimal techno. A very strong techno/house package, check!
Thursday, 20 May 2010
This latest addition to the Riot Season catalogue comes from UK metallers Sloath, who take inspiration from the greats of doom and sludge on this three-piece debut. You'll hear the influence of slow-mo bass merchants like Earth writ large across these tracks and the group's heavily saturated production doesn't hurt on that front either. The band's sound distills an old fashioned brand of heaviness that stems right back to the glory days of Sabbath, packing a bluesy grind that's full of demonic flattened fifths and lost-soul vocal howls. Limited to just 500 vinyl copies for the world.
Wednesday, 19 May 2010
Another fun new band on the Captured Tracks imprint, who are really churning out the releases these days. La La Vasquez kick off their 7" with a bout of jerky and detuned surf rock instrumentalism via the brilliantly titled 'Mexican Ghost (On A Boat)', all of which is build up to the title track, 'Hello' which is a masterclass in stylish DIY incompetance and vaguely saturnine whinge-punk. Over on the flipside, 'Clare Savage' starts off in a manner that's a little more stripped down and melodious, although the lead guitars sear through the mix discordantly before the trio kick off in predictably shambolic and noisy fashion.
Tuesday, 18 May 2010
Second drop from the Atom River label displaying two shades of Ital tek's IDM/Dubstep hybrids. 'Spectrum Falls' is about the lush, happy and hafstepped side of his style with fluoro pink melodies and well sculpted electronic bassline. 'Giga' shifts up to a snapping garage pattern with melancholy moods for fans of Burial etc.
Respected blogger West Norwood Cassette Library presents the first entry for his self titled label, backed with a lazer guided slab of Wunky from Brackles. The original skips with a freshened dub-tech/breaks flex, while the Brackles version is all about tightly offset conga rolls and wickedly discordant synths to make one unsure of whether they're coming or going. Trippy roller!
Following it's original appearance on Idle Hands, Hanuman's Sheffield bleep-styled 'Bola' is taken for further remixes by Star Eyes, Chrissy Murderbot, Kanji Kinetic and Thunderous Olympian. Chrissy Murderbot goes down the B-More booty route while Kanji Kinetic gets on an active garage jack and Thunderous Olympian offers a 4/4 electrohouse vibe. Cool.
Monday, 17 May 2010
Verily dope kit of classic breaks and beats from the legendary Shoes production team. This set originally started out as a bootleg released through Shoes' own label but the Numero imprint, whose source material is raided for the album, got in touch with the cheeky editors and released these brilliant collages on their own label. Fans of RJD2, Madlib, Mayer Hawthorne or DJ Shadow should be all over this like a rash!
Thursday, 13 May 2010
Leading on from Mark Clifford and Mira Calix's haunting collaboration 'Lost Foundling', Andrea Parker & Daz Quayle, Luke Vibert, Majestic 12 (aka Fastgraph & Ultradyne!) and Freeform's Simon Pyke are enlisted for remix detail. We'll cut to the chase here, the Majestic 12 track is an absolute killer. We're not quite sure when they made it as the original tracks were produced up to 10 years ago, but it's unmistakably got that jarring, evil Ultradyne shudder that can't be f*cked with. Parker & Quayle's mix of 'Beethaven' taps into all the exquisite and intricate production value… Read more
Heavyweight dubs from Deep Medi contirbutor Tunnidge, with two Sound System primed DJ tools. 'Higher Forces' reminds us of older DMZ tracks with concrete smacking snares and pure dread bass weight, while 'Riddles Of Jah VIP' on the flip sounds like a hybrid of Tectonic's Cyrus and Rob Sparx with spacious darkside dub flavours crashed by a rave ready synthline.
'Rastakraut Pasta' is the 1980 album of odd studio experiments from the legendary Conny Plank and Dieter Moebius (also of Harmonia/Cluster/Kluster etc). In the scheme of things, this album appeared after some of Dieter's best works with Eno and Roedelius, and at the start of a fruitful pairing with seminal studio engineer, Plank, before they would go on to create the frankly awesome 'Zero Set' album together with Cosmic Courier, Manfred Neumeier. Obviously influenced by Jamaican dub and perhaps tired with lovely kosmiche trips, this album just reeks of smoke and heated circuitry, keepi… Read more
Electronic soul-bot Jamie Lidell returns to Warp with another long-player, and this time Beck and Grizzly Bear's Chris Taylor share production duties, with an all-star cast fleshing out the personnel elsewhere. Various other people from the Grizzly Bear camp get involved, as do members of Wilco, along with Leslie Feist, Nikka Costa and Chilly Gonzales. The record commences with a bit of a dictaphone beatbox jam, 'Completely Exposed' introducing itself in unassumingly raw, and lo-i and lo-fi fashion befitting its title. Soon enough, Lidell's confident and undeniably virtuosic tones find thems… Read more
Planet Mu's prog-dubstep songsmith presents his debut full length. Over 13 tracks Rudi proves he's got the kinda of dynamic electrosynth chops of Starkey or Kuedo, but reworked with a more prog-poppy and IDM set of coordinates, making for an intensely busy, floridly detailed and engaging listen. Think Tim Exile getting into a serious chat about astro quantum physics with Rick Wakeman while someone twiddles on their 6 headed midi-axe and you're in the right zone.
Wednesday, 12 May 2010
Pearly Gate Music is the alias of solo artist Zach Tillman, younger brother of J. Tillman, whom you may already know as the drummer in Fleet Foxes as well as a lone singer-songwriter in his own right. Zach proves that big bro Josh didn't get all the talent in the Tillman family across ten beautiful, often very scrappily recorded tracks. On the opening track 'Golden Funeral' the whole piece comes coated in hiss and crackle, except this isn't the 'good' sort of background noise - no Victrola noise here - but rather the kind of high-pitched digital grind heard when you're recording… Read more
Tuesday, 11 May 2010
Two stone cold bass weight overdoses from Random Trio's Cyrus. For this release he's dropped the ravier impulses of more recent efforts to revert to his formula of ultra heavy subs and spare, powerfully charged percussion. 'Beatwise' uses diamond-tipped snares and stomach massaging subs to achieve the desired effect while 'Scanner' does laregly the same, only with a dread sub drone that makes one feel rather uncomfortable. Heavy sh*t!
Three tracks of hi-end IDM and techy-jazz inspired D'n'B from the consistently uncompromising Subtle Audio label. 'Tensions' is the highlight of the 12", skulking in the shadows of recent minimal tech outings by Rockwell, Data, Sabre etc, but sparked with its own febrile syncopations and enclosed within stylishly Vangelis-esque atmospheres. On the flip 'Halleluja' experiments with a halfstep D'n'B pattern and 'Hydra' stirs in some blue, late-night jazz chords.
Monday, 10 May 2010
**Purple Marbled Vinyl** Brooklyn act PC Worship is the solo venture from Justin Frye of such bands as Teeth Mountain and Gary War, and this new 7" features four of his fine compositions. 'So Denied' introduces the release with a slab of slowed-down mopey pop brilliance and electronic scuzz before all of a sudden it's 1992 all over again and 'Wake Up In The Dark...' arrives with a gooey foray into the filthiest kind of grunge, at one point brilliantly letting loose with wailing free-jazz sax. The B-side begins in a more surreal fashion caking on more disjointed improv inc… Read more
Saturday, 08 May 2010
"The first band of Can drummer Jaki Liebezeit after Can split up in 1979. The first line-up (1980) included top musicians such as Helmut Zerlett (e.g. Dunkelziffer, Unknown Cases), Rosko Gee (Traffic, Can), Dominik von Senger (e.g. Damo Suzuki Band, Dunkelziffer), Olek Gelba, and Holger Czukay (Can) as guest musician. The Phantom Band mixes Can-style monotonic polyrhythms with afrobeat, funk, jazz, disco, reggae, and dub. A nearly forgotten exciting musical experience!"
Thursday, 06 May 2010
Man like El-B makes his presence felt in 2010 with four tracks of harder dark garage for Night Audio. Unlike his previous 'Think Ur Greezy', he reverts to the style that made his name in the first place, from the aggy juggernaut of his and Laze's 'How U Like Dat', to the classic ghost-isms of 'This Thrill' and the fluid flex of his and Rolla's 'Dirty Dirty' shooting for the most mash-up ends of the night. Ruff an' tuff!!!
Benga returns in fighting form for Tempa with the first of a new doublepack series. 'Phaze One' contains six tracks (eight for the digital) designed for peak-time deployment, leaving any jazz-noodling for the album and depositing some heavy riches for the floor. The scorching 'Baltimore Clap' is kinda self-explanatory, riding pitbull claps and subbass swoops like a mutant B-More ballroom b*tch come to fuck up south London while 'Eyetunes' is a more regular skanking rave tune with heavy production values. 'Mini Moto Cross' gives a revved up thrill with charging synthline and forward lurching percussio… Read more
In a very, very short amount of time Rockwell has become one of the brightest young hopes for Drum & Bass music. He apparently started out listening to ravey modern jump-up but once he started producing, soon discovered the joys of a manufacturing a techier groove. 'Stowaway' is his first drop on Digital Sound Boy and only his second solo release to date. With 'Stowaway Dub' he constructs advanced steppers syncopations with a seriously turbulent subbass flow, while 'Drums' works with a post-Paradox set of reference points, and 'Snare Drum Awareness' shows his skill with a more classic D'n'B arra… Read more