Trailblazing Japanese composer Ryuichi Sakamoto is joined by revered electronic musician Taylor Deupree on this live recording, documenting their collaboration at St John-at-Hackney Church in 2014 – part of Thirty Three Thirty Three’s flagship concert series ‘St John Sessions’.
"The two musicians develop a kinetic understanding over the recording, entering a sparse musical dialogue – flourishes of prepared piano give way to bursts of noise and sculpted synths. Totally improvised, the performance follows their collaborations on record – as a duo on 2013's Disappearance, and in a trio with Illuha on 2014's Perpetual.
Ryuichi Sakamoto has had an extraordinary career, from his founding of revolutionary electronic trio Yellow Magic Orchestra, to his remarkable film scores – notably Merry Christmas, Mr Lawrence and the soundtrack for Oscar-winning film, The Revenant. Taylor Deupree, meanwhile, spent his career devoted to his label, 12k, and an intricate form of ambient minimalism.”
260 page, full colour, hardback book full of previously unseen photographs from Mika Vainio's archive and the Vainio family scrapbook, plus contributions from his musical associates, friends and family, unseen texts, a full discography of everything Vainio ever released on his own and in collaboration with others and much much more - including a CD of previously unreleased material.
The book contains a heart-wrenching collection of photographs from the Vainio family archive, a broad range of artistic contributions (text, photographic and visual remembrances) from Mika's artist friends and collaborators, an Updated and exhaustive Mika discography, Jennifer Lucy Allen’s unedited transcript for her The Wire magazine 2013 ”Invisible Jukebox' – one of Mika’s most animated media responses, a variety of Pansonic ephemera from Paul Smith’s own Blast First archives, and an album length exclusive CD of previously unreleased Pansonic performance recordings - ”Turku Moai - live on Rapa Nui”."
Boxed don Mr. Mitch on an 8-bit dancehall bogle for The Bug’s Pressure label, backed with tremendously unstable remixes by the bossman
‘Not Modular’ is a mad stripe of bubbling electronics driven by a rugged ‘90s Dancehall engine in Mitch’s more playful, party-guaranteed style, while The Bug typically makes it darker, wilder with dense level of FX applied to growling, noisy fashion in the ‘Straight’ remix, then in super dry and rasping style on the murderously ‘Raw’ remix.
Reissue of rare and addictive bubblegum-house flavours from late ‘80s South Africa via Afrosynth Recordings
The Bees’ little-known 1988 album ‘She’s A Witch’ revolves six ‘floor-ready jams melding the kind of bubblegum-styled, lilting vocal harmonies that developed thru the ‘80s, with a slicker lick of Chi-house demonstrating how South Africa embraced the sound, like everywhere else at the time.
The title track ‘She’s A Witch (Tikoloshi)’ is a real standout balancing super rugged bassline with those signature, pained vocal harmonies, singing lyrics about a ’Tikoloshi’, the mischievous creature of Zulu folklore (usually a man) who is blamed for all manner of mysterious happenings at night. Next to the more uptempo and slicker glyde of the DJ-ready ‘Hlabalaza’, this one’s a bit of a must.
Including an acid remix of Steve Davis’ Thundermuscle, among other oddities, ‘Repeat’ is a 26-track compilation of acid rave trax by veterans such as Humanoid, Mark Archer (Altern-8), µ-Ziq, Gez Varley (LFO) and Todd Osborn (TNT), plus relatively younger acts such as Chevron, Emma Catnip, and Polysick
Based on the silliness of ‘Bippy2’ Steve Davis should definitely stick to DJing or snooker, but the veterans have you sorted for trippy dance music between the eczema acid breaks of B. Dougan aka Humanoid’s ‘Far Point’, while Mark Archer plays is deep with ‘House In U’, and Gez Varkley will get those cowie jaws going with the direct churn of ‘Acid Thunder (LFO Mix)’ and Mike Paradinas gets top marks for an early SoYo acid style in ‘Reaching (Future Feeling).’ Elsewhere Polysick serves a sweetly mild dose with ‘Pastoral’; Kev Cotter goes on a Derrick May/Kev Sanderson flex with ‘Black Synthesis’, and Wisp gets the ’91 hardcore styles right with ‘Catacomb Sound.’
Maxsta’s classic 2010 grime debut now made available to DL via No Hats No Hoods
Written and issued when Maxsta was just 14-15, ‘The Maxtape’ then earned the East London grime prodigy worthy comparisons with a yung Dizzee Rascal, mainly for the higher register of his voice and road-level lyrical subject matter. Produced by a range of grime’s big guns, from Danny Weed and Terror Danjah to Target, Maniac and Bless Beats, it also features a strong roll call of guest MC’s such as Wiley, Dot Rotten, Flowdan and Ghetts, who clearly cosigned that the 15 year old was one to watch, and even work with.
Nearly a decade later, the album is patently future-proofed by its colourful production palette, taking in shades of UKF and UKG beside the grime standards, and Maxsta’s animated delivery, which would later light up the killer ‘100 Problems’ 12” with Maniac and Boothroyd in 2015.
I Hate Models and Amelie Lens join Perc in makeovers of ‘Look What Your Love Has Done To Me’
You kinda know what to expect and it gets delivered in huge clods, from I Hate Models’ roughshod 140bpm run, to the icy businesswoman techno of Amelie Lens’ version, and Perc’s elbow grease on the VIP mix.
Crushingly dark and ominous avant-classical nocturnal scapes from Tehran-based Siavash Amini, marking his debut with Lawrence English’s Room 40. Amini’s work in ‘Serus’ is often scowlingly serious, but not without its moments of spacious, harmonic relief that bring the album’s underlying themes about sleep and dreams to life in suitably heavy-lidded, edge of nightmare fashion. One to be filed in your New Iranian Electronics folder, and another strong release in what's proving to be a vintage year for Room 40.
““Every night is two nights, according to Maurice Blanchot. The night the body spends in sleep is not the same as the night the dreamer spends in dreams. The sleeping body may lie under the stars, and the dreamer may dream of the stars—even of a journey to the stars—but the night of the dream is a night without stars.”
From Siavash: The Idea of this album, when I first started drafting it, was to continue what struck me as very interesting yet simple idea; night. I became interested in different definitions of what night is, our perception of it and what night means physically to us as well as symbolically. I came across the idea of ‘other night’ described by Maurice Blanchot, during my research. It started me recognising night as something we experience as ‘the night of sleep’; it is night that we resist in sleep, by way of dreaming. Things became more interesting for me during many nights of not sleeping and intoxication, and an eventual nervous breakdown. This experience, culminating in me spending three days in ICU, gave me pause to think about Blanchot’s words.
Slipping in and out of consciousness my mind, which had already experienced a blurring of what one might call the ‘other night’ and the night itself, by being in half sleep most of the time. I felt myself far way from all my surroundings and at the same time being very attentive to some details in the objects around me. It was as if my body and mind where in an in-between state. I can only describe this as being distant or more precisely being in the dark. Objects and people showed themselves out of proportion and mostly dim. A feeling to describe this sensation, the word for which I only came across later, is ‘Serus’. There was a sense of repetition and familiarity in some feelings and emotions that I had towards some objects like sensing I knew them but not exactly from where or when. It was as if my body was resisting sleep and my sleepy mind was resisting being awake, only to dream of another type of the world that I could be awake in.”
Lone dices with acid and breakbeats on the ‘Abraxas’ EP, which was apparently conjured after hearing his pals playing D&B on the wrong speed
The title tune is a fine display of choppy, rolling breaks and flutes in a breezy halcyon rave vein, while ‘Young Star Cluster’ rocks the bells and reverse drum edits with chewy gobs of 303, and ‘How Can You Tell’ is pulled heart-first to the heavens with radiant choral vocals and pads in an LTJ Bukem style.
10 years on from Fever Ray’s ‘Live in Luleå’ set, she marks distance travelled with a recording of her new live set made at London’s Troxy, March 2018
Beloved for her wild stage costumes and light show, not to mention the tunes, Fever Ray’s live reputation for boundary-pushing performances precedes her. The current show may not be as dazzling as the early ones, but it’s still a polished hard diamond of a thing, presenting mutated versions of early anthems and new songs alike, with a particular leaning towards Afro-Latinate percussion that lets you know you’re not at another clunky EDM or rock gig, as bigger staged shows often play up to.
That rhythm-driven approach is perfectly characterised in the newly slinky swerve of ‘When I Grow Up’ and the rude swang of ‘Triangle Walks’ from her self-titled debut, along with a trilling take on ‘If I Had A Heart’ that hits the mark dead on. However, the majority of material is from 2017’s ‘Plunge’, including a spellbinding version of the fetish pop beauty ‘Mustn’t Hurry’, and a carnival-ready take on the Nídia-produced ‘Idk About You’, and a thrillingly sharp and sexy spin of ‘Wanna Sip’ that we remember slicing thru the crowd at their Manchester show.
It’s a year and a half since the release of Freedom’s Goblin. A winter of rain has buried the recent times of drought. Now voices from the garden cry of desire and disaster, but outside the gates, rebirth is happening.
“Our salivating makes it all taste worse,” croons Ty Segall in the first salvo of First Taste. He’s talking about us: how we’re the masters of our own destiny, tellers of our own prophecy, makers of our own sickened choices. It’s a warning, but this time, the finger is pointing back at him too. He’s one with us.
Contradictions are rife. First Taste is an introspective set after the extroversions of Freedom’s Goblin — yet just as steeped in party beats somehow, even as Ty trails through his back pages, reflecting on family, re-encountering pasts, anticipating futures. Feeling, like it was the first time, the duplexity of core truths. Lines of struggle wind through the songs. “My life is a mystery / I’d look inside but I can’t see,” as one goes — and yet, such promisingly oblique reflections act to unravel the onion, lifting the veil. Ty skates through oneness, self-esteem, the parents — all the joys of a rain-filled childhood — while reaching outward in the here and now, feeling for a shared pulse. To go on, we need to feel it.
These are serious indoor moods, but with Ty, there’s a moment that always comes, a joke or something to crack the bubble and let some air in. It all comes together with volcanic energy — who knows what it means? One disaster ends another; mudslides down the hills into gaping canyons, freeways blocked, the sky filled with smoke. Then we go on. Meanwhile, the sounds — what are they? This production is INSANE, far-out, stranger than known, tones and rhythms that expand before our ears. These colors are weird. Together, they float like a flag, flashing binary lines like sirens to our eyes. There’s tons of drums, and acoustic . . . . things of all kinds. Horns, synth pads. Pianny. Boiling overtime, Ty’s creative juices suggested that First Taste be written and executed with some radical new instrumentation — koto, recorder, bouzouki, harmonizer, mandolin, saxophones and brass, voices, and sure, a sprinkling of keys. And the drumkit(S!), a position Ty occupies whenever it’s heard on the left speaker, while Freedom Band drummer (and SO much more) Charles Moothart plays the kit on the right side. Those two get DOWN together. Whatever the mood is, the pedal is pushed cleanly to the metal — and that means to the max of the lightest ballads ever, OR through the most raging rocks yet. Ty’s vocal prowess, always a highlight, sits in fresh relief against his mutant orchestra, spooling tension through some of his most patient songs, his feral scream in complete control. Taking us through it.
First Taste is arch, full of high-energy jams, with a thing in each mix always insistently different. Ty’s song design’s all over the place — not even a surprise anymore — but unlike the freewheeling feast style of Freedom’s Goblin, these twelve numbers form a tightly revolving cycle of song and sound that focuses thoughts. First Taste isn’t really the first for Ty, or you or me. But for the latest, it’s a remarkably fresh taste. Maybe it’s the first for today — and when tomorrow is today, then too."
Deep techno and house from Ireland’s blooming bedroom dancefloor dimensions, served warm by Greek label Echovolt
Leading on from Der Opium Queen’s remix of George Earnest’s G.E.O. Corp 12 ‘College Derive’, the two make it official with their debut turn of astral acid and blushing boogie, building up the energy withe lip-smacking MDMA-flavoured pads over ruggedly offset Detroit techno-house drums and 303 ellipses in ‘Ultralush’ to leave you rolling on the carpet or hugging the next body, whereas ‘Rainy Day’ sees to a slower blush of pink-hued pads and pendulous electro-soul rhythm, with ‘Time Heals All Wounds’ striding off into the sunset like an Omar-S or Rick Wilhite number.
A centrepiece of ‘Anima’ remixed by Thom Yorke and Nigel Godrich, plus Equiknoxx, Mark Pritchard, and Clark.
The icy electroid dancehall rhythm of Thom Yorke's original ‘Not The News’ supplies wickedly chewy tackle for the remixers, prompting Equiknoxx’s Time Cow and Gavsborg to step up in killer style with a sort of 2.1-step dancehall take turning Thom’s vocals into childlike chatter, whereas the extended original sees the vocals trimmed back to poignant prongs and diffused into airy chorales.
Mark Pritchard meanwhile swaps the original drums out entirely for a sort of squashed, live-sounding nyabighi or talking drum sounds underlaid with massive subs to recalling Mark Ernestus’ Ndagga Rhythm Force gone maudlin, while Clark brings up the rear with a weird glam rock swagger.
That Equiknoxx remix is worth the cost of entry alone!
Hyperjazzy ghettofunk from Brainfeeder’s man in Austria, leading on from 2018’s ‘The Nature of Imitation’ album
‘Toothbrush’ plays out tight helter skelter harmonies yoked to surging ghettotech bumps, whereas ‘Booth Thrust’ dances around the groove in 2.1 step style, injecting the same elements with a fruitier flair.
This is lovely - Baltimore’s Ami Dang navigates alternately lush, ecstatic and meditative fusions of East and West with spellbinding arrangements of sitar, voice and kosmiche electronics. Trust this is no ersatz ethnomusicology but a naturally visionary and well-skooled flight of imagination - mind-boggling new expansions of classical Indian music augmented with stunning synthwork. RIYL SOTE’s ‘Parallel Persia’ , Charanjit Singh’s ’Synthesizing: Ten Ragas To A Disco Beat’
Where too many artists have paid lip service to fusing classical Indian music traditions with modern music, Ami Dang authentically yields something thrilling, entrancing and genuinely unique with ‘Parted Plains.’ Interpreting South Asian and Middle Eastern folktales - the four tragic romances of Punjab, Sohni Mahiwal, Sassi Punnun, Heer Ranjha, and Mirza Sahiba; Flora Annie Steel’s Tales of the Punjab: Folklore of India, and selected stories from One Thousand and One Nights - Ami presents a new chapter of Indian fusion music that firmly speaks to a modern, hemisphere-harmonising synthesis of East and West, contemporary and traditional.
In Ami’s hands those ancient tales live on in the tactile, narrative expression of her music. The plangent plucks of sitar lyrically take centre stage, reeling off a range of rapturous, solemn and romantic yarns set against incredibly immersive synth backdrops that both mirror and counter the acoustic parts beautifully connoting the feeling on a mind bifurcating, spiralling and entwining in cosmic helixes. The effect is most striking in the likes of her ‘Bopoluchi’ blinder, where the sitar rings out from the eye of a steeply dark synth cyclone, or ’Stockholm Syndrome’, when her slow, air bent strings coalesce from sweeping gyroscopic synth dimensions, or when they rattle hard but harmonious like Sote’s take on traditional Persian instruments in ‘Sohni’, while ‘Love Liesse’ places her sound in the lushest romantic context, conjuring mental imagery of ancient gods, star signs, and such.
Deerhunter co-founder and drummer Moses Archuleta tests his hand at electronic dance music with results landing somewhere between Eric Copeland’s scuzzy bodgers and a late ‘90s chill-out compilation. Includes guest appearances by Jefre Cantu-Ledesma, Shigeto, and Angel Deradoorian
“Moon Diagrams is the solo recording project of Deerhunter co-founder and drummer Moses John Archuleta. Two years after his debut album Lifetime of Love, Archuleta returns with Trappy Bats, a mini-LP that interweaves three brilliant new Moon Diagrams tracks with radiant reworks from Shigeto, Angel Deradoorian, and Jefre Cantu-Ledesma.
Trappy Bats was largely recorded in a single night as a means to process the intense intersection of Archuleta’s social, political, and personal hysteria. Having been arrested for an unknown, missed court date, Archuleta spent 24 hours in a holding cell, offering ample time to reflect on his life, the current state of the nation (the jail televisions were showing a constant feed of the then-active Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville), and the other inmates stuck inside the containment center. Upon being released the next day, Archuleta found himself suffering from a bout of insomnia and feeling the need to process everything through music.
Here, Archuleta is in his freest and most grateful state, channeling the turmoil and confusion he was experiencing into an unencumbered fit of creativity. It’s pure, unadulterated escapism with an even more callous palette of sounds than before, clearly split between two different moods. The end result is an extended traipse through Saturday evening fever-dream techno, Sunday morning cigarette jazz-pop, and every blank-thought in between.”
Nérija are the septet of contemporary jazz luminaries, Nubya Garcia (tenor saxophone), Sheila Maurice-Grey (trumpet), Cassie Kinoshi (alto saxophone), Rosie Turton (trombone), Shirley Tetteh (guitar), Lizy Exell (drums) and Rio Kai (bass). Rooted in friendship, Nérija is a collective whose breakneck shifts in tempo and style rely on a deep understanding of mood, temperament and expression, a solid show of trust that extends beyond the usual bonds between musicians.
"Recorded in the boat-shaped confines of London’s legendary Soup Studios and produced by Kwes, the overarching goal with Blume was to simply capture the rawness, warmth, joy and the spirit of their relationship and performance. One of the recording aims was to channel the feel of Teo Macero and Stanley Tonkel’s records with Miles Davis during his Columbia years, thinking “forward” as they did but for this band, capturing the controlled chaos and frame it with a timeless elegance.
Blume is a truly breath-taking collection of compositions that perfectly encapsulates everything Nérija; vibrant, engaging, infectious and truly current. For just over an hour, they take us on a sprawling wonderful journey, arriving at what is a majestic body of work; their personal and collective experiences and inspirations over the last half decade or so."
Deep Detroit techno mechanics from Xavier De Enciso, on DJ Dex (UR) aka Nomadico’s Yaxteq label
The petrol-powered bassline purr and flickering streetlight chords of ‘Rasquache’ emulates the feeling of driving round the 313 at night; ‘Metzli’ picks up the pace with needling hi-hat swing and baseline moving into the next gear; ‘Warehouse Deep’ swirls sax and acid lines in a ruder house style; and long distance trucks on with a sexier, latinate sort of charge recalling DJ Qu productions.
Yatta’s absorbing 2nd PTP release opens further windows onto a breezy and disorienting blend of jazz-blues vocals, cut-up instrumentation, ambient electronic detours and darker, technoid impulses. A must check for followers of Klein and Moor Mother...
“Influenced by everything from Khan Jamal to Egisto Macchi via Basic House and Konrad Kraft, Why So Mute, Fond Lover? builds new worlds of beats and rhythm, sound collage, ambience and noise using random borrowed equipment, broken gear and household appliances. The album was recorded in Mile End, London and Hamburg (with collaborator Ben Page of Rocketnumbernine and Elite Barbarian), and mastered by fellow Rothko member Mark Beazley.
Donnelly has previously released albums on Exotic Pylon, Hideous Replica and Foredoom Productions, and has been a long-term member of Rothko, performing on a number of their albums including A continual Search for Origins, Eleven Stages of Intervention and most recently 2018’s Blood Demands More Blood.
Why So Mute, Fond Lover? comes with a bonus album (to download with all physical copies, and available separately to download) featuring tracks from Michael’s previous releases plus new remixes by Pye Corner Audio, Polypores, Kemper Norton, Psychological Strategy Board, Basic House and Elite Barbarian.
This new release is the second volume of a new series on Front & Follow – Ex Post Facto – which seeks to celebrate experimental electronic music in all its forms, showcasing new work and old, exploring the relationship between the current and the past, how they influence and shape each other and our experiences of them.
For each volume in the series we ask artists to create a new project of their own choosing and present it alongside a retrospective of their past output. Ex Post Facto: There are always consequences in retrospect.”
Whipsmart, aggy techno rolige from Swarm Intelligence, a new name on Tommy Four Seven’s label
Working right on the biting point of noise/techno and roguish UK styles, the EP turns up some blistering highlights in the recoiling kicks and snarling neuro D&B synth torque of ‘Infinite Density’, and then with a beastly sort of dancehall techno belligerence in ‘Chromium Chambering.’
Bibio pairs a sugary nugget from his ‘Ribbons’ album with an exclusive new song, ‘Spruce Tops’
So sweet in its dedication to beardy ‘60s psych folk that it borders on a kind of Matt Berry-like pastiche, ‘The Art Of Living’ sees Bibio fully assume his natural form as wistful crooner, while ‘Spruce Tops’ is a strolling instrumental that shares a similar sort of boomer nostalgia.
Texan chanteuse Molly Burch returns with two heart-stopping tracks.
"Entitled Ballads in homage to the strong and powerful female vocalists that she admires, this 7” EP embodies what Burch loves to do and what she does best: crafting music with emotion, drama and romance, giving her voice all the room it needs to burn bright."
Vancouver’s Regularfantasy (Ciao, Plush Managements Inc.) trips a fine line between shabby chic smarm and off-kilter, lo-fi dance pop
‘Condobed’ is their follow-up to a tape and 12” for Total Stasis in 2018. On one hand it trades in a sort of manicured shabbiness that we’ve heard a million times before, but on the other hand, there are sweet moments to be found in the sideways R&B of ‘Don’t Want Pain (Wetface Tribute’) with its pitching vocals and punchy drum machine, or the knackered slow house of ‘Never Wanna Let U Go’, and the half-awake boogie budge of ‘Life is Expensive.’
All in all, bit of a charmer!
The slow and sexy OG version of ‘Feel The Love’ from the ‘Ambitions’ LP, backed with the campy canter of Prins Thomas’ uptempo ‘Diskomiks’, plus a pair of punchier late ‘80s styled takes by Lauer bringing its saucy disco flavours to the boil and then the darkroom
NYC’s Haus of Altr turn out deep house and driving techno jams by MoMa Ready
Make sure to check for the tuff, Green Velvet0-style push of ‘Faith & Release’; the simmering breakbeat techno flex of ‘The Fade’; the haunghty heft of ‘Peaking’; and their ace blend of 2-step and ballroom “Ha’s” in ‘Shade’.
Berlin club night/label/misnomer, African Acid Is The Future, present traditional turns from Niger’s Les Filles De Illighadad and Edimony Krater (Gwakasonne) backed with rolling and jazzy tech-house remixes by Dauwd, Maryisonacid, and DJ Oil