Curious combinations of dry East Midlands vocals with mutant computer electronics by Dane Law...
“Gary Myles (Of Habit, Spoils & Relics) and Adam Parkinson (Dane Law, Quantum Natives) combine microphone, objects and computer in their first collaboration, Empty Gesture. Unsettling ambience is struck through with Of Habit’s monotone, almost demented spoken voice. Dane Law’s jittering software recycles and accumulates, offering patterned beats and digitally crusted soundtrack. It’s both welcome and unwell. Data everywhere and yet nowhere, just passing through us, warming.
Merge sort takes advantage of the ease of merging already sorted lists into a new sorted list. It starts by comparing every two elements (i.e., 1 with 2, then 3 with 4...) and swapping them if the first should come after the second. It then merges each of the resulting lists of two into lists of four, then merges those lists of four, and so on; until at last two lists are merged into the final sorted list.
Of the algorithms described here, this is the first that scales well to very large lists, because its worst-case running time is O(n log n). It is also easily applied to lists, not only arrays, as it only requires sequential access, not random access. However, it has additional O(n) space complexity, and involves a large number of copies in simple implementations.”
‘Mechanosphere’ is Cam Deas’ abstract yet poignant 2nd album exploring ideas of rhythmic dissonance and head-spinning proprioceptions for The Death of Rave. Following directly from his cultishly-acclaimed mini-LP ‘Time Exercises’, which was surprisingly deployed in Richie Hawtin’s recent ‘CLOSE COMBINED - LIVE’ mix and hailed as “Holy F#ck-What is This?!?” by Brainwashed, his new album applies rich polychromatic colour to his signature rhythmic constructions with a greatly heightened emotive traction and broader appeal while only going deeper on his radical ideas about the fundamentals of sound and composition. Big recommendation if you're into Autechre, Xenakis, Ligeti, Rashad Becker.
Using a computer-controlled modular synth, Cam takes the simple idea of layering pitches in multiple tempi to Nth degrees, resulting in a sensational and warped sense of temporality and gravity-defying physics. Effectively placing pitch on a scale in a similar way to Conlon Nancarrow’s player-piano programming or even Ligeti’s famous metronome experiment, Cam explores solutions to the problem of grid-locked linearity, or at least perceptions of it, by effectively ripping the rug from under electronic music convention to make his music appear as though in perpetual freefall, or a process of omnidirectional contraction/expansion that never quite resolves - always the same, ever different.
In ‘Mechanosphere’ listeners effectively navigate through the music by a loose means of pattern recognition, picking out accentuated kicks and hits that pierce thru Cam’s incredibly dense swells of endless metallic tone. But where his ‘Time Exercises’ LP was unreservedly abstract and emotive in an alien sense, his follow-up practically sounds as though aliens have developed a form of 3D midi folk-jazz or court music for bacchanals and spiritual reasons.
From the vertiginous scale of ‘Ascension’, thru the the jaw-dropping hyper stepper ’Slip’, to the controlled chaos of ‘Reflect, Deflect’, and ultimately the deeply solemn yet discordantly lush finale of shearing metallic pitches in ’Solitude’, Cam offers an often shocking and ever fascinating grasp of electronic music’s potential to relate hard-to-communicate but intuitively felt ideas to the body and emotions. It’s a sober but incredibly wondrous sound, and only confirms that Cam’s seismic stylistic transition this decade from preeminent, post-Takoma 12-string guitar player to visionary synthesist was certainly worthwhile.
Szare follows one of 2018’s biggest techno anthems, ‘Kodiak’ for Different Circles, with the inaugural 12” of grimy techno for Bristol’s Polity Records
In bolshy mode, he throws down the swingeing percussive voodoo of ‘Miner’ like a Dabke song for ruffians not allowed to join the wedding dance, before buffing up his brass sample pack for the militant 130bpm grime swerve of ‘Cut with Glass’, and slopping out with the immense, trampling pressure of his slo-mo industrial slug, ‘Drop Shadow’.
Big RIYL Mumdance & Logos, Muslimgauze, early Skull Disco
Exceptionally skewed, killer and asymmetric dancehall mutations from the same label that gave us that amazing Paradon’t EP a couple of years back, this one sounding like the missing link between Demdike Stare, Schaffel and Slikback 🔥
"'No idea how to categorise this! I would have called it experimental dancehall but irel.ier who made it says it’s not! Besides i don’t care how you call it - it bangs! When I played it out in Pudel (Hamburg) people were losing their shit and someone screamed in my bleeding ear “MASTERPIECE!!” so let’s just call it that!
We made 300 copies. They feature a beautiful image of your inner ear Haeckelified by some naive AI and the title (gang guan li) skilfully handwritten in Chinese calligraphy on the flip in iridescent colours.'"
The first in a series of exclusive editions of releases we've loved in 2019 comes from Indonesian nutters and notorious live act Gabber Modus Operandi. Their debut album for Shanghai’s maverick Sbvkvlt kru despatched eight hooligan alloys of heavy metal, militant Dutch kick drums and native styles of gamelan and Dangdut Koplo - local folk-pop - for a totally unique proposition no matter what angle you’re coming from. It’s a seethingly up-for-it and puckishly immediate sound, lending a thrilling new spin to well-trampled tropes in a way symptomatic of the current wave of rave goods.
Working a sound bound to unite scallies from Sunderland to Rotterdam and Jakarta, ‘Hoxxya’ toggles the pressure between mixtures of industrial panel beating and BM atmospheres in ‘Genderuwo’ to the hypnotic meld of pealing horns and bonehead stamp in ‘Sangkakala III’, getting the heart rate up with the adrenalised stepper ‘Semeton 10 Ton’, along with the scudding swagger of ‘Kon’, nodding south to the Bloody Fist crew and their apocryphal Pyongyang Hardcore Resistance in ‘Tekyan’, while ‘Trance Adiluhunxxx’ gives a stinging shot of melodic energy, and the hyper percussion of ‘Calon Arang’ and ‘Padang Galaxxx’ get us gurning like a hellish tribal mask.
Ruffhouse’s Karim Maas does worm-charming techno and abstract D’n’B night terrors on his killer 2nd 12” following the crooked trip hop of his recent collab with Pessimist.
Emerging as a new overlord of UK bass undercurrents with his ‘Old World Disorder’ EP in 2018, Karim Maas has come to represent a very fine strain of negative energy carried over from late ‘90s D&B, techno and dark ambient noise.
Under a title that nods to Panos Cosmatos’ modern sci-fi classic as much as his noirish club lust, the ‘Blakk Rainbow’ EP finds Karim edging ever closer to a consolidation of the crucial cinematic and dancefloor aspects of his style. The thousand yard stare drones and gut-rumble rolige of ‘Beyond The Blakk Rainbow’ perfectly resonates feel of the eponymous 2010 film, while ‘Trama Doll’ starts out sounding like a Source Direct intro but surpasses any bruk out urges in its slithering, viscous flow and mist of seething noise. ‘Saturn Return’ follows with a steeply enigmatic mix of Indian classical vocal perfusing pendulous bass and drums that resemble a desiccated Regis production, and ‘Know Your Enemy’ again highlights his keen sound design skills with a frighteningly immersive intro that gives way to a shuddering techno undertow that splits the difference between CUB and Fishermen.
Dry but playfully kinetic experiments in rhythm-driven minimalism from persistent explorer Andrea Taeggi of Gondwana and Lumisokea esteem
In a play of contrasts Taeggi ’s ‘Batch 0011’ is coarsely split between its slower and uptempo halves. In the slower sections of ‘Inscape’ and ‘Capricci’ he uses the slower tempo to open out and colour the space with discretely harmonised hues and expressively chattering electronics in a way recalling Bellows’ roughly plotted, sensitively haptic style.
On the other hand his uptempo works have the potential to get under a dancefloor’s skin, working up a bristling, driving sort of electro-acid groove in the salty writhe of ‘F.R.B.’, and again in a way recalling Byetone on the hypnotic shuffle of ‘Vanitas’.