Thursday, 12 March
**One half of minimal synth souls Xeno & Oaklander ups the visceral noise quotient to noxious, compelling degrees** "Gyors, Lassù marks an important milestone in the evolution of Martial Canterel's music, progressing far beyond the cages of “minimal synth” and embracing the noisier qualities of its sound with a renewed urgency, a kind of thickness embodied in multiple layers using only eurorack, Serge and Roland 100 modular systems at his disposal and flushing out the entire session in one take. Sine waves are rendered into walls of guitar-like noise on songs like “And I Thought”, while … Read more
*Limited Edition reissue on Brown vinyl* Here's what we said about Medulla when it first came out: "Going through another baffling pre-recording arrangement of ideas Bjork finally hit on making 'Medúlla' (translated as marrow in latin) an album mostly stripped bare of acoustic and electronic instrumentation. Instead all the music had to originate from the human voice, hooking up with Mike Patton, Rahzel, Robert Wyatt, Kelis, plus other lesser known artists and choirs from the UK and Iceland. Where music does creep in it's handled by Olivier Alary from Ensemble, Mark Bell, Matmos, M… Read more
*Limited Edition Blue Vinyl Pressing* 'Biophilia' must be one of this year's most anticipated, and lavish album projects. A number of delays have pushed the release date back, but that was to allow extra input from Leila and Current Value, who join an illustrious production cast including Mark Bell, Matthew Herbert, 16 Bit and El Guincho, plus a full 24-piece Icelandic choir. The results are suitably spectacular, articulating the leading lady's obsessions with virtual reality, physics and nature in ultra-modern and cutting edge fashion. She still sounds like nobody else in the wor… Read more
Sides E + F for the the Clone Classic Cuts compilation of Jovonn's 'Goldtones'. Deep and fruity garage in four grooves: 'Erson's Keys' taken from the 'Underground Construction' EP; the boiled kettle flutes of 'Where Did House Go'; sub-heavy and organ-soaked vibes in 'N.Y.N.J.' from the 'All Nite EP'; the playful keys of 'Pianos Of Gold'.
A Sagittariun gets down with the Hypercolour kids, backed by a pumping Detroit mix from Rolando. Taking a minute out from his Elastic Dreams series, the enigmatic producer weighs up a slamming sorta hardcore hybrid with the pile-driving 4/4 kicks, sparking breakbeats and celestial arpeggios of '3-4-3', and takes us back to Gescom-style hip hop breaks with the downtempo 'Delta House'.
Tightest electro functions from the Lobster Boy, New York Transit Authority. Booming 808s, rasping claps and DX7-style synth shocks are on the menu for the killah 'Brooklyn Underground'; B-side, 'Dinner & Corsica' gets on a lean and tensile electro-techno tip with serious dancefloor swerve. Sureshot.
Bullion's Deek gang return with a lucent 2nd EP by dream-pop starlet Laura Groves. As with her enchanted 'Thinking About Thinking' 12" and contributions to Deek's Nautic project, 'Committed Language' is gilded with a classic pop magic that's clearly working its spell on us again. The titular opener is a beauty, finding Laura swooning all over floating, Sakamoto-esque chimes and flourishes of jazz-folksy Fleetwood Mac, while 'Dream Story' comes off like Grimes' in a parallel, '80s FM pop world. With 'Friday' they strip it all right back to deliquescent keys and synth staging Laura in … Read more
*Second comp from Robert Johnson in the Lifesaver series, featuring tracks from Roman Flugel, Massimiliano Pagliara, Portable, Lauer and more. Includes download code* "Kicked off by one of the Frankfurt young guns, the compilation leans into a melody-driven warm-up with a slight hint of analogue soul – "Digital Revolution" by Orson Wells. Next up is the Italian-born and now Berlin-based Massimiliano Pagliara. His contribution "Phasing Down The Sea" enriches the second Lifesaver installment with some of his signature synth-lines paired with a classic chicago-dri… Read more
Emosh London dancefloor flex from the Berlin transplant XXXY. 'Last Dance' works out like the weepy cousin to Joy O's 'Hyph Mngo' on the A-side; 'Close The Door' shakes down a perkier house shuffle pointed with warm strings and juicy bassline bounce beside the shape-cutting squeeze, 'Behind You'.
**Airhorn** Weighty but agile footwork/jungle deviance from Fracture and Manchester's Chimpo. Best of both worlds in three parts, mixing an old skool Manc Junglist swagger with modern Chicago bass ructions, shifting weight from skanking halfstep to soul roll and back to full bore brukout with 'From Early'; or shredding between late '90s tech-step and quickstepping footwork 808s with 'Hard Food' beside Fracture's neater reduction of 'From Early'.
**Limited-edition LP housed in a Stoughton tip-on sleeve** "Baba Commandant and the Mandingo Band are a contemporary group from Burkina Faso. Coming from Bobo-Dioulasso, the group is steeped in the Mandingue musical traditions of their ancestral legacy. The enigmatic lead singer Baba Commandant (Mamadou Sanou) is an original and eccentric character who is well respected in the Burkinabé musical community. A sort of punk Faso Dan Fani activist for traditional Mandingo music, Baba continues to redefine the boundaries between traditional and modern. In 1981, he joined the K… Read more
*New Edition with full artwork* The biggest Grime riddim of 2010 with DJ Q remix, finally repressed on 12 inch. A-side features the bubbling 808s and shark-eyed synths of 'Woooo Riddim' straight up, sounding as lean, futuristic and skunked-out as every time you've heard it on the bus, youtube or soundcloud. D Double E may be missing but this riddim goes hard regardless. On the flip DJ Q's remix lends a flush of feminine, twinkled-toed synths and cut-up vocals for the club. It's possibly symptomatic of the times that it's taken so long to land on wax, but Butterz have just made a lot of grime heads very, very happy with this pressing. Essential!
2015 reissue of dBridge's post-Bad Company 2004 classics. 'Bellini' tears a deeper hole on the A-side; 'True Romance' ties it up nice 'n nasty liquid style on the B-side.
**Strong, Dilla-meets-Morricone-at-Gaslamp Killer's-place vibe on this one** "Instrumental psychedelic hip-hop hybrid Lilacs & Champagne spent their first two albums shining a light on the darkest corners of vintage European cinematic oddities. Their eponymous debut album and the follow-up, Danish & Blue, were warped, psychedelic takes on damaged funk and b-movie film scores. With their palette now thoroughly smeared, coconspirators Emil Amos and Alex Hall are flirting with the makings of a masterpiece in Midnight Features Vol. 2: Made Flesh. From the mournful ope… Read more
*Includes digital download voucher redeemable from the label* "Grey day celebration music for meshed afternoons; eleven strums and songs to savor as you wander till spring. Did Damon & Naomi dream them? Did I? Will you?” —Andy Zax People talk about Damon & Naomi as if they’re the raw infrastructure that remained after Galaxie 500 fell apart, a steel skeleton stubbornly standing after an earthquake. But when the pair began a new project, they weren’t nadjusting so much as starting from scratch. By the time they released More Sad Hits, they had grown enough as musicians and songwriters that they d… Read more
"From the dawn of doo-wop to the death of disco, the Notations saw—and sang—it all. Persisting through changing trends and technologies, on major labels and minor ones, produced by both Syl Johnson and Curtis Mayfield, nothing could stop the Notations from representing Chicago’s Southside for decades. The first overview of their indie label golden age, Still Here 1967–1973 finds the Notations at a musical crossroads, turning from simmering R&B ballads to socially-conscious soul. Offering up a platter of golden-dipped harmonies, inventive arrangements, and super-powered soul, the Notations survived as unheralded legends in their own time."
Brooding and evil techno from Holland. Check for the psychotic A-side joint, 'Ilape' with its squealing lead line and the vintage Brum presure of 'Scuff'.
Proper noise Techno party with AnD, Papers, Bintus, Neil Landstrumm, Ordinate, Martyn Hare, DeFeKT. Check for AnD's crisply defined 'Higgs Boson'; Papers swinging mutant, 'Calum'; Ordinate's super-blunted industrial shuinter, 'OR 06'.
*180g Coloured Effect Vinyl encased in 350gsm Mirrorboard Varnished Gatefold Sleeve, with Pantone Neon Red printed ontop of mirror effect. Right hand houses the vinyl inside a black and Pantone Neon Red Inner Sleeve and the left hand side holds a 12pg Full Colour and Neon Red Booklet on uncoated stock containing rare photos and brand new text about the band, his muse and that era, by James Chance himself. The release has two extra tracks to the original release and the Free Download contains an extra selection of live tracks* "Come contort yourself…the New York … Read more
*180g Coloured Effect Vinyl encased in 350gsm Mirrorboard Varnished Gatefold Sleeve, with Pantone Neon Red printed ontop of mirror effect. Right hand houses the vinyl inside a black and Pantone Neon Red Inner Sleeve and the left hand side holds a 12pg Full Colour and Neon Red Booklet on uncoated stock containing rare photos and brand new text about the band, his muse and that era, by James Chance himself. The release has two extra tracks to the original release and the Free Download contains an extra selection of live tracks* "Come contort yourself…the New York N… Read more
Deviant industrial techno from the UK. Four stages of industrial pressure, from Ancient Methods-alike swagger to grumbling, raved-up styles, thru sub-heavy rolige and ghostly abstraction. Canny, like.
**Debossed, heavy card jacket. Includes download code** "Stick in the Wheel are a raw and uncompromising London folk band. Headed by Nicola Kearey (vocals) and Ian Carter (dobro and production), they have recruited seasoned folk singer Fran Kempster (harmony vocals), Si Foote (percussion), and Joolie Wood (fiddle) to create a record that is utterly real, a large and intentional step away from overblown folk floweriness, back to the fundamental essence of storytelling through song, by the people for the people. Brought up in the thriving culture of working class London and cutti… Read more
*White vinyl LP includes digital download code* "Canadian duo Megan James and Corin Roddick, aka Purity Ring, return with a second album, entitled ‘another eternity’. Their 2012 debut ‘Shrines’ was in many ways a prescient suggestion of indie and popular music to come. While Shrines was composed remotely between Halifax and Montreal, ‘another eternity’ marks the first time Megan and Corin were able to create a record in the same room. The pair ventured home to the frozen industrial landscapes of their birthplace Edmonton, Alberta to document much of what would become the album. Megan an… Read more
**Includes digital download code redeemable from the label** "Created at the foot of Mount Taranaki, 'Hewn' is the sophomore release by Wellington, NZ based producer / musician Groeni. Representing a departure from one idea in order to rediscover and understand another, the record deals with the interactions of two sets of people, paralleling and contrasting them. Throughout the record, the lines become blurred - subjects merge and intertwine, adopting combined, often confused perspectives. "There are links between the songs, things tie together and reappear at various points. Certain words, subjects a… Read more
**Gatefold sleeve. Includes free download code redeemable from the label** Features production from Chet ‘JR’ White (formerly of Girls), Black Keys’ Patrick Carney and Ariel Rechtshaid (Vampire Weekend, Haim, Sky Ferreira).
"The making of ‘Soft Connections’ was a lengthy process that took place during a crucial period of musical growth and self-exploration. It’s an optimistic and introspective record about being in-and-out of feeling - on the brink of a personal breakthrough, yet still seeking direction, purpose, truth and permanence. Anchored by the Catwalk favourite ‘Please Don’t Break Me’ - a song that, at one point, could very well have launched Nic Hessler into ‘indie celebdom’ - this record is now a send-off to Nic’s lost time; he’s moved forward, sounding better than ever and ready to soundtrack your long road trip or failed crush."
*Edition of 500 copies, RIYL Sleater Kinney, Deerhoof, The Raincoats, Kleenex, Grass Widow* "The ‘Six Songs’ mini album Sacred Paws’ debut release for Mogwai’s Rock Action Records label. Sacred Paws craft a twisted pop music that is joyful, ecstatic, spontaneous and essential. A wild-eyed exchange of highlife rhythms and melodic interplay, with spiralling, spidery guitar lines and chattering post-punk drums. Every moment in a Sacred Paws song propels the listener forever forward, open-armed to the world..."