Thursday, 15 September 2011
**Limited, individually numbered edition of 600. 3LP box-set of incredible extreme noise and power electronics mixed with unpredictable moments of folksong and weird, loungey solo synth workouts. Oscillates wildly between furious and gentle like only the Japanese can** "GRIM is an absolutely amazing, almost skizophrenic and obscure power-electronics and noise-one-man project of Jun Konagaya. Jun's sound change its mood and atmosphere in seconds. From extreme harsh and hard power electronic noise-walls to ingenious folk-songs and tunes as you know it from Charles Manson. In the very early 80s… Read more
Soca-flavoured swing-Tech specials from Vibezin, making a rude debut on Keysound. 'Hot 4 U' gets involved with rugged Reggaeton-like drums worked into swinging Garage patterns, pure London 2011 vibes. Again, 'Mad Sick' comes off like some vintage Sticky groove faxed forward from 1999 into the cyber-tropic decade, while 'Vicious' dips with a different Dubstep lean, all billowing subbass and broken beat-style chord progressions.
Pure, 'floor-scorching JukeXGarage rinse-out from a rogue San Fran operator. To date Don's done Techy House fusions for Phonica's white label series and self-released a small clutch of Bass grooves besides engineering duties for DJ Harvey, but for our $, this is his best yet. A-side is a pumping number called 'Balboa' fusing springy bass hits with surging rave signals and canny sense of syncopation somewhere between Dance Mania's maddest moments and latinzied Joe-style groove. Flipside 'Von' is equally energetic, full of percolating club rhythms and mesmerizing Techno-Disco synthlines for the dancers. Sick!
Quite incredibly, this is the first vinyl reissue of the earliest and best work by legendary Brazilian musician, Tom Zé. 'Grande Liquidação' was originally released in 1968, the same year Zé contributed to the Tropicália blueprint 'Tropicália: ou Panis et Circenses' alongside the perhaps better known Caetano Veloso, Os Mutantes, Gilberto Gil, Gal Costa and Nara Leão. His first LP was recorded shortly after moving to Sao Paulo from the regional capital Salvador, Bahia, and features a shocking wealth of ideas informed by the Dada movment, psychedelic rock, and imported American Funk, which he … Read more
Jazzman's Jukebox Jam Series turns out two sides of raw and gritty Chicago blues from the obscure Frances Burr and the KJ Trio. 'I Say No, No More' instantly grabs your attention with hard drums and piano hook paving the way for a dominant, blazing vocal. Flipside 'I Won't Hurt You' is slower with honking sax and begging lyrics from the unknown Miss Burr. Ace.
*White box welcome the return of Manchester's Stranger Son, who provided the label's first release back in 2009.* "Stranger Son's new 12" 'Inside Many Summers' is an EP of hazardously infectious disco-not-disco grooves and loose-ass, Pennines-jams. The title is taken from their forthcoming album 'Luna Marseille' whereas the other two tracks ('On Pterodactyl Sofa' and the monolithic twelve and a half minute instrumental sprawl that is 'Iceman Part II Extended'), are exclusive to the EP."
Wednesday, 14 September 2011
"The Groove Club present 22 records dug out as a tribute to Fabrice and Stéphanie’s kinky franco-pop faves, from those magic years 1966-71, with two inclusions from 1976 & 77."
Tuesday, 13 September 2011
Fierce Dubstep rave from a new guy to the Boka camp, Crushington. 'Voodoo Skank' plays it tribal style with romping drums and snarling mid-range licks, while 'Hangman' lurches between halfstep and 4/4 roll-outs tied up with aggy bursts of explosive synth.
Monday, 12 September 2011
**Includes digital download coupon redeemable from the label** Originally released in 2010, 'Future Weather' set the scene for The War On Drugs' acclaimed recent album 'Slave Ambient'. Bookended by two pieces of lush kosmiche on the A-side, you'll find the railroad-chugging folk-pop of 'Baby Missiles' which clearly recalls The Boss at his uplifting best, while the more lo-fi and lonely 'A Pile Of Tires' could almost have appeared on the recent Amen Dunes ace 'Through Donkey Jaw'. The forlorn mood is beautifully followed on the other side with 'Brothers', almost like a lonelier Ducktai… Read more
*Debossed gatefold jacket and colour printed inner sleeve* Veiled folk magick from the Savaging Spires ensemble, making an unannounced and anonymous entry with the first vinyl LP on Critical Heights - home to records by Wooden Wand, Delphic Vapours and Owen Tromans. Enchanting from the off, their eponymous debut is set to become a real cult classic, crossing secret paths between pastoral psych collaging and knowingly meticulous folk composition in the flicker of a hare's whisker. Wicker Man references abound, but there's something far more wyrd at play here, an instinctively organic f… Read more
*Putrified brown coloured vinyl housed in gold embossed, leather-effect jacket. Includes 24"x12" poster/liner notes & download code redeemable from the label* Heavy, heavy Norse rock, recorded by Steve Albini. "Fifth album by the Norse Gods of Noise Rock, Arabrot play their purest, wildest, ugliest rock'n'roll. Solar Anus is the fifth album by this Norwegian noise rock act. Their previous album, Revenge from 2010, marked the "end of an era and the beginning of something new". While the first four Arabrot albums showed a staggering level of ambition and a sense of musical dramaturgy like no other b… Read more
Majestic debut of instrumental krautrock power anthems from this Finnish quartet. Siinai emerged as part of the same scene which includes groups like K-X-P, Zebra and Joensuu 1968 (with whom they share members) during one of their country's notoriously long, cold winters, with a sound worthy of the album's grandiose and evocative title 'Olympic Games'. After a few gigs they quickly garnered a reputation for creating "…a powerful experience of huge krautrock hymns with giant hooks, motorik marathons, psychedelic soundscapes and melodies of grief and relief.", which is well warranted on discovery … Read more
**Includes MP3 download code redeemable from the label** "Night People is a series of character studies. Alienated and out of fashion, these people stay up all night, stumbling through isolation to explore trauma and ecstasy in search of their own glamour. The boundaries of reality dissolve in their environment, and the light from within transforms street lamps at last call into beacons towards infinity. Guided through fuzz and fog, truths emerge, as the knots binding sensuality and spirit unravel. In a world defined by EDM's music, the Night People's stories are projected, as reality turns int… Read more
"The Act of Shimmering is the act of leaving conscious thought behind. It's accepting what lies beyond the corporeal, transcending the physical; the soul is aware and the body, eyes, skin are distant empty casings. A clamorous, chaotic cacophony surrounds a beatific center. An endless assault of guitar, of noise that glistens, a poignant rigor. Jannick Schou, proprietor of tape loop drone, places himself within the tunnel of din to produce this profound work: an ethereal dream using nightmarish parts and images. Black and grays generate vibrant innards. Brightness is unearthed within … Read more
Thursday, 08 September 2011
The latest EP from Manchester's estimable Hoya:Hoya crew features the talents of Ikonika, Om Unit and Monky, all taking the opportunity to go out on a limb and serve up something really fresh. Ikonika pays tribute to, er, 'Fleas' with a midnight electro stepper, with bolshy but blue synth arpeggios busting loose of a tom-heavy rhythm somewhere between UKF and an 80s cop movie soundtrack - think Moroder by way of Hyperdub and you're not far off. Om Unit's contribution is probably our favourite, a sick compression of Drexciyan aqua-synthesis and zapping acid lines, like a Stingray… Read more
ASC serves his second helpig for Blackout's BLKND series. A-side squares off the HipHop/D&B fusion of '3rd Eye', a lugubrious neck-snapper with hard-edged synths and drums. Flipside is 'Torque', a very late '90s/early '00s IDM production with overdriven percussion and proggy melodies, next to the equally archaic 'Ubik'.
One of the UK's most important producers links with one of Grime's most notorious characters for the cheekiest cut on Planet Mu this year. 'Stereotype' features Trim running inimitable riddles and road references over a jaunty hiphop beat from Africa Hitech's Mark Pritchard which could have plausibly soundtracked the soapiest capers of Robin Askwith, well, maybe in a smoked-out parallel dimension? On a more minimal dancehall flex, 'Kiss My Arse' is another uniquely UK tune, Trim playing it red-eye restrained over slow-iced sino-grime melodies for a 2004 meets 2011 sound. Wickedness.
CANT is the new project from Grizzly Bear's Chris Taylor in collaboration with Twin Shadow's George Lewis Jr, and Dreams Come True is their first full-length offering. With their employment of R&B tropes and hard-snapping syn-drums coupled with classic pop songwriting, CANT are to Grizzly Bear what Discovery were to Vampire Weekend (kind of). But where Discovery's self-titled LP was a celebratory record, Dreams Come True feels more plaintive and wounded, and it also paints from a far wider and more sophisticated musical palette. You really don't know what you're going to get from one moment to … Read more
**Includes free digital download code redeemable from the label** German duo Tarwater have been cultivating their oddball sound - somewhere between skew-whiff electro-pop and plangent post-rock experimentation - for more than 15 years, and for those who've been keeping an eye on 'em during this time, their evolution has been really impressive. Inside The Ships - something like their tenth album - finds them at the top of their game, their synthesis of guitar, electronic pulsation and pastorally psyched-out, swinging chamber instrumentation at times coming over like a hypothetical hook-up b… Read more
*Barnstorming new single with remixes from Brandt Brauer Frick and Kyle motherf**kn Hall!* The ever-impressive Emika returns with a disarmingly angsty house jam, her voice simmering in a broth of industrial shrapnel and Hammer horror FX. Brandt Brauer Frick's remix begins like a classic Perlon minimal prowler before evolving into something different and highly contemporary, gradually foregrounding elegant piano loops, off-kilter percussion edits and Emika's sultry vocals without ever drifting from that core club-ready 4/4 pulse. Kyle Hall toughens and roughens things up, c… Read more
Big room-readied remixes of Friendly Fires. Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs are in euphoric mood for a Funky-Tech roller with hands-in-the-air breakdowns and bouncy breakbeats, whereas Seiji's is more about the Latin-Funky swivel and propulsive, ascending synthlines. Drink spilling times.
Over the last 2 years Raffertie has emerged as an unquantifiable element with the UK Bass/electronic sphere. After releases for Planet Mu and Black Acre's Special Branch, 'Visual Acuity' is his first release since completing a degree in classical music composition in 2010. It's a clear step forward from the ADHD rave styles of his previous form, still manic but with an overriding sense of control. 'Visual Acuity' sets the bar with dynamic spatial rendering applied to starbursting synths and rogue Garage patterns, while 'You Could Be Forgiven For Thinking That' casts of into sparser, more emot… Read more
Pat Gubler’s been pedaling his softly-spoken folk rock for long enough to call him a ‘veteran’ at this point, and ‘Starry Mind’ is exactly what you’d hope from someone who doesn’t have to resort to dropping R Kelly references to get column inches. He might not be injecting anything particularly new into his songs, but there are few solo artists who do a better job of capturing the golden age of Neil Young and Van Morrisson (even Mr Young himself…) than P.G. Six. Gubler’s songs chug when they need to chug and jangle themselves through fresh wet autumnal air – you’d almost think the early autumn re… Read more
Choppy, electroid funk from Ben Butler & Mousepad, backed with remixes from Mesak, Shigeto and Brokenchord. The duo of Joe Howe and Bastien Hagedorn have previous dabbled with Skweee for Dødpop and stranger electronic pop for Loaf, but these seven tracks find them shredding beats somewhere between Mr Oizo and Debruit. The remixes touch on jerky HipHop from Shigeto, intricate rhythm re-programming from Brokenchord and a charming Finnish funk from Mesak.
"Peter Wolf Crier's second album 'Garden Of Arms' is a document that paints a vivid portrait of all the pain and beauty of growth. The duo of Peter Pisano and Brian Moen transformed the fuzzy distortion, rolling and crashing drums, and laser-focused purposefulness into an intensely dynamic yet supremely polished album. The lead off track, 'Right Away' best exemplifies the band's new direction, a dense and jarring embrace of the immediacy of real personal connection."
Highly anticipated fourth album from the much-loved dons of New York indie-disco. 'In The Grace Of Your Love' is an overdue return from the trio, five years on from 'Pieces Of The People We Love', and their recent single aside, at least four years since any other new material. It's been time well spent, evidently, resulting in a body of instantly pop sharp and dancefloor-rousing anthems, from the festival-ready pogo of 'Sail Away', to the glam-punky thrust of 'Blue Bird', an odd but successful sidestep into Balkan House on 'Come Back To Me', to the Beirut-reminiscent 'Roller Coaster', and the jerky wave-funk of 'Can You Find A Way'.
"Critically acclaimed songwriter and mastermind behind The Magnetic Fields, Stephin Merritt ‘Obscurities’ is a collection of Merritt’s hard-to-find early recordings. ‘Obscurities’ features 14 tracks in all, including five previously unreleased songs, all recorded prior to The Magnetic Fields’ seminal album ‘69 Love Songs’. Among the tracks on ‘Obscurities’ is The Song From Venus’ ‘Forever And A Day’, a solo-acoustic ukelele-based love song reminiscent of ‘69 Love Songs’ ‘The Book Of Love’. Also included on ‘Obscurities’ is ‘The Sun And The Sea And The Sky’, a previously unreleased ‘69 Lov… Read more
"'The Wanting' is Glenn's first album for Thrill Jockey (and fourth album overall) and follows the instantly sold out 'Even To Win Is To Fail' LP (a split with The Black Twig Pickers released for Record Store Day 2011). Glenn Jones is a leading talent in the so-called modern "American Primitive" school of acoustic steel string guitarists, a school that includes the late great John Fahey, Robbie Basho and Jack Rose - all of whom were friends and collaborators of Glenn's. · 'The Wanting' is a collection of original compositions for solo acoustic steel string guitar, six-string, 10- string and b… Read more
*Full colour gatefold sleeve* Warm Digits present their debut album of motorik Kraut, Psych and Disco for Distraction Records. The North East duo comprises Andrew Hodson, who's previously known for his outing as The Matinee Orchestra, and Stephen Jeffries, who used to make electronica as Cathode, but together they're looking at the classic thrust of Neu!, the the pulsing arpeggios of Giorgio Moroder and Brian Eno's proggy excess for inspiration. They're equally adept at full flight Krautrock propulsion on 'Keep Warm', as hellbent prog on 'Weapons Destruction', but sound cla… Read more