“Apollo are delighted to welcome the return of Australia duo Albrecht La’Brooy AKA Sean La'Brooy and Alex Albrecht with their blissful new album 'Healesville' recorded in a mud-brick hut on a strawberry crop in the Melbourne countryside.
'Healesville' follows on from the bucolic wonder of their Apollo debut 'Tidal River' which took inspiration from the duo's visit to the beautiful Wilson's Promontory (a remote national park on the South East coast of Australia). "Late last year, we trekked out to a beautiful mud-brick studio located next to a large strawberry crop in Healesville," Albrecht explains. "We spent a few days capturing the feeling of the slow-paced, relaxed surrounds: The wildlife, the strawberry pickers, the sounds of the night, and improvising a response to them with music we felt suited."
Setting up their favoured musical equipment, which included two pianos, a Waldorf, a Nord and a clutch of microphones the long-form improvisations began. "The physical construct of the hut imparted a warm and acoustically interesting environment to record in," Alex explains. "It also allowed us to be as close to the strawberry crop itself - we positioned a mic out the window to capture the recordings of the sound outside. During one of the sessions, a harvest was taking place, and you can hear tractors passing and workers talking and laughing in the recording.
The resulting drowsy pieces were completely improvised (augmented by percussionist Joseph Batrouney, guitarist Carla Oliver (Badskin) and guitarist Oliver Patterson), freeform recordings that explores themes of relaxation, sleep and dreams; somnambulant piano figures are caressed with delicate guitar passages bathed in the bucolic field recordings of the Healesville environs.
Recording the album proved to be as relaxing and civilised a process as listening to it: "We cooked nice dinners, enjoyed good wines, and took plenty of walks through the landscape to break up the sessions," Alex shares. The resulting record is one of quietly sozzled majesty - a delicate fusion of ambient electronic textures, live instrumentation and field recordings that beguiles and soothes the listener in these troubled times.”
Post-metal sludge avantgarde powerhouse SUMAC around Aaron Turner (Isis, Old Man Gloom) follow up their collaboration with legendary japanese guitarist and singer/performer Keiji Haino on Thrill Jockey (American Dollar Bill – Keep Facing Sideways, You are too Hideous to Look at Face on) with another monolith - heavy and experimental at the same time!
Keiji Haino – Guitar, Voice, Flute, Taepyeongso
Aaron Turner – Guitar
Nick Yacyshyn – Drums
Brian Cook – Bass
Recorded: Soh Ki Moon at Fever, Tokyo. July 3rd 2017
Mixed: Randall Dunn at Avast, Seattle, December 2018
Mastered: James Plotkin, Bethlehem, December 2018
Exterior Photographs: Miki Matsushima
Interior Photographs: Kazuyuki Funaki
Titles and lyrics by Keiji Haino. Title translation by Alan Cummings.
‘On Vanishing Land’ is legendary writer/theorist Mark Fisher’s deep topographical reading of the Suffolk Coast, conceived in 2006 for his former CCRU comrade Kodwo Eshun’s (and co’s) Otolith Group. The text is narrated by Justin Barton, who previously voiced John Foxx’s ‘The Quiet Man’, and set to suitably haunting sonic backdrops by the likes of Foxx, plus Raime and Baron Mordant. It’s issued as the first release on Flatlines, a sublabel of Hyperdub,which of course belongs to another of his CCRU comrades, Steve Goodman aka Kode 9. A must check!
“Hyperdub launch new sub-label, Flatlines, for the vinyl and digital release of On Vanishing Land, an audio-essay by Justin Barton and the late Mark Fisher. OVL evokes a walk along the Suffolk coastline in 2006, from Felixstowe container port ("a nerve ganglion of capitalism") to the Anglo-Saxon burial ground at Sutton Hoo. A walk under immense skies, through zones of deep time and within sunlit, liminal terrains, into the eerie.
Everywhere there are charged atmospheres, shadowy incursions, enigmatic departures. A derelict radar base, coastal heathland, drifting thistledown, towers of overgrown shipping containers - music haunted by wider levels of reality, narrations about rarely visited zones and potentials, voices of dreams and stories. Newly composed tracks by John Foxx, Gazelle Twin, Baron Mordant, Raime, Pete Wiseman, Farmers of Vega, Skjolbrot, Eerie Anglia, Ekoplekz and Dolly Dolly; and, alongside these, views toward M.R. James’s Oh Whistle and I’ll Come to You My Lad (1904), Joan Lindsay’s Picnic at Hanging Rock (1967), and Brian Eno’s On Land (1982).
Beyond the surface of the day something becomes visible, a way forward, an escape-path from capitalist reality. On Vanishing Land is about following the lines of terrains and dreams. It is about a micropolitics of escape, of disappearance. A micropolitics of waking the faculties.
“It is April, but it feels like summer. They turn left onto the seafront […]”
On Vanishing Land was initially part of an exhibition commissioned by The Otolith Collective and The Showroom in London, and after londonunderlondon (2005) it was the second audio-work collaboration by Justin Barton and Mark Fisher. The LP cover features photos taken by Mark Fisher and a short essay by Justin Barton.”
Martyn indulges his formative and enduring love of D&B and UKG in three crispy zingers for Ostgut.
The rugged breakstep flex of ‘Odds Against Us’ triggers a deep and rude session that sees him get on a jazzy halfstep hotfoot recalling classic J Magik in ‘B.C. 2’, then cutting like Dego in the ruffneckj soulboy parry of ‘Rhythm Ritual.’
Miami badboy Greg Breato makes his 4th foray on Ni Un Pero with 2nd LP ‘Loud’, a naturally experimental extension of his freaky, distorted house style
Gunning wilder and looser than ever, Beato effortlessly dares to be different across ‘Loud’, jamming together elements in a way that’s familiar yet entirely his own. He’s really got us snagged on the album’s rude acid bits, namely the flayed and vertigo-inducing flow of ‘No Shooters’, the zigzagging Chi-house acid of ‘Xioo’, and most of all the deep fried 303 fuss of ‘Levántate Gregoriooo’ and the jumpy slammer ‘Finger Trance’, while keener observers of his work will no doubt be buzzing with the album’s farthest reaches in the atonal noise excursion ‘EML Granular’, his heady transition from 4 minutes of curdled loops into the spanky jack of ‘DRGNSL (Greg’s Nuance Dub’) and the psychotomimetic drive of ‘Carr’.
Low key, infectiously squashed bumps from Lurka, rubbed out for Bristol's bob-on crew, Wisdom Teeth
Among the most distinctive but modestly unsung producers of this decade’s shift to 120bpm and slower tempos, Lurka maintains his curious class in all three parts, with tucked tresillo rhythms and weightless pads in ‘Stay Let’s Together’, then like a thizzing, slinkier Gabor Lázár workout in ‘Plenty’, and on a rudely stressed and dubbed-out swagger in ‘Bodied.’
Recorded in Nashville with the legendary engineer Rob Galbraith, ‘Nashlantis’ features 11 mesmerizing Gantry performances (“a séance with the Human Spirit,” as the producer puts it), retouched in Austin with painterly brevity by DeCicca and Stuart Sikes. Preserving the intimate nature of Chris’s acoustic guitar and vocals, Don Cento, Ryan Jewell and Marina Peterson wove electric guitar, mandolin, synthesizer, percussion and cello into the fabric of the songs and guest harmony vocalists Edith Frost and Bill Callahan added stellar contributions as well.
"'Nashlantis’ is inevitably a reflection on Gantry’s long and winding path through this world - but the vitality of the songwriting stops the music from becoming simple elegy or denouement. Chris’s crafty old-school way with a tune and his smooth melodicism gives him the space to tell his tales with ease; lovers, losers and madmen are depicted with warmth and empathy, a genuine love of the human spirit and the singing chops of a man who’s known tens of thousands of nights of song. ‘Nashlantis’ is a testament to the career and talent of Chris Gantry - the individualism that set him apart from his earliest days and his openhearted embrace of the unknown. Jerry David DeCicca’s production sound makes for yet another unique chapter in the Chris Gantry catalogue - a potent new entry, five decades and more down the line - the improbability of which makes it pure Gantry, all the way.
The annals of Nashville, the 20th Century’s immortal Music City, are filled with lore of the legends, as well as tales of the one-shots, the lesser-knowns and the delightful obscurities: singers, writers and players who had a moment, were a step away from stardom or just stood in the same room with the men and women whose names we know. Like the outlaw he defines himself as, Chris Gantry doesn’t really fit in any of those boxes - and 50-plus years since he wrote his first and biggest hit, he’s still writing and singing, having lived to tell the tale of his serpentine but ultimately joyful path, a ‘Life Well Lived’.
Now in his mid-70s, Gantry is still a consummate performer and an inveterate writer, appearing in performance as a lusty, genial man, grateful to have drunk of the experience he’s had, transcendent in that experience and ebullient in the moment of singing it. ‘Nashlantis’ is the ninth record of Gantry tunes to be released since Chris moved to Nashville in early 1960. Then, he fell in with like-minded others: Shel Silverstein, Kris Kristofferson, Eddie Rabbitt, Vince Matthews and Mickey Newbury - guys working day and night to break into the business, writing and singing their way through the chaos of their youth. It was an intoxicating environment - everyone with his own vision and Chris’s cosmic stirrings setting him a little apart from the rest.
He first got a contract to make an album after Glenn Campbell’s version of his tune ‘Dreams of the Everyday Housewife’ went to Number Three on the Billboard Country Charts in 1967. Between 1968 and 1975, he recorded three madly diverse records, released by three different imprints - Monument, Magic Carpet (a Monument subsidiary) and ABC Dot. One other session from that time sat in the can for over 40 years, until Drag City put it out in 2017 as ‘At The House Of Cash’. Meanwhile, the fellow who brought that long-lost project to Drag City, Jerry David DeCicca (a singer and performer in his own right, who also co-produced the Larry Jon Wilson album released back in 2008), was producing a new record for Chris."
‘Only You’ spotlights French pianist/ composer Emilie Levienaise-Farrouch’s score to the film of the same name starring Laia Costa and Josh O’Connor and directed by newcomer Harry Wootliff.
"This selection of four cues from the original score sees its composer dialing into the intimacy of the narrative. Just like the film itself, the instrumentation for the original score of 'Only You' is intimate, focusing on two elements only - cello and piano, often layered and with subtle electronic manipulations. These four longest cues from the film express what the two lead characters, Elena (Costa) and Jake (O'Connor), can't or won't say out loud, with the music and melodies becoming the voices of their emotions.
‘Separation’ opens proceedings with a gentle piano score performed beautifully by Christina McMaster. ‘Where We Are’ and ‘Sorry I Missed Your Call’ are composed for solo cello and performed by Gregor Riddell. The former with its use of delay and sense of space recalls the late great Arthur Russell; whilst the latter overlays the staccato processing with a beautiful bowed melody. Closing out the EP, ‘End Scene’ marries the two cello modes with the piano, this time played by Emilie herself. All four brief tracks were recorded by Sean Woodlock at Goldsmiths Music Studio and were mastered by Martyn Heyne at Lichte Studio.”
Amsterdam stalwart Darling and his wee daughter Lexi will charm your socks off with their debut for Juju & Jordash’s Off Minor
Apparently Lexi, who looks no older than 6 y.o. (maybe 6 and half), played all the synthesisers on the record, which means she steals the hat from NON’s remarkable ’SAFA: New York City’ set as one of the youngest artists ever to cross these pages, if not the youngest. Anyway, she gets all the sticky gold stars for her input, colouring her synths inside and out of her dad’s stripped down drum tracks and acid lines with a confidence beyond her years.
From ambient songs about her maw in ‘Mama is Een Poes’, thru the fluffy spirals and bubble-blowing synth spumes of ‘Television Plant’, to the cutesy cartoonish dream sequence twinkles of ‘Crocodiles Are Birds’ and ‘Land on Island Land’, we can assure you that it doesn’t sound like the work of a primary skool kid. But then again we haven’t heard many recordings by primary skoolers, and maybe there’s a wave of Fisher Price and Yamaha-wielding pre-teens about to usurp all the old, white blokes? Let’s just hope so.
Gloomy, rustic, cinematic soundscapes issued as part of Gizeh’s ‘Dark Peaks’ series.
“Several Wives lie in the darkened corner of a room. Paintings torn, forgotten against the wall. Dead rhythms seep through the floor. Everything is tired. Everything is jaded.
Göldi fell is Several Wives’ newest work, following on from the excellent Blonde, Arms Tight Black cassette release on Tombed Visions last year. The bowed, electro-acoustic, heavy drones continue and present an almost horror-soundtrack performance of intense beauty. It’s a deep, dark world of reverb, echoes, and distant pulses all struggling to be heard and understood.
This is a stunning piece of experimental, almost classical work, evoking a sense of ethereal dread and mournful regret. A thick air creeps in. It’s a doom-ladened record and one that will take you over if you let it.”
Dons of Québec’s Napoleonic War Black Metal scene, Departure Chandelier stake their tricolour proudly in heavy synth atmospheres, fulminating guitars and lyrics about le wee radge with a big hat.
In their own words “The Spirit of Death is Alive!” and who are we to disagree. Coffined in dark synth into and outer, you’ll find two of their songs, proper; one slow and dramatic swagger ‘The Black Crest Of Death, The Gold Wreath of War’ and the other fast and infernal with ‘Consecrating The Flame Of Resistance.’
On his second studio album, More Arriving, Sarathy Korwar blasts out a vibrant, pluralistic missive for the world to hear.
"This is not necessarily a record of unity; it’s an honest reflection of Korwar’s experience of being an Indian in a divided Britain. Recorded over two and a half years in India and the UK, More Arriving draws on the nascent rap scenes of Mumbai and New Delhi, incorporating spoken word and Korwar’s own Indian classical and jazz instrumentation. This is a record born of confrontation; one for our confrontational times.
With this album, Korwar expands his politicised narrative to envelop the entire diaspora. “This is a modern brown record. The kind of record that a contemporary Indian living in the UK for the past 10 years would make,” Korwar says. “This is what Indian music sounds like to me right now.” It all begins with the title: “More Arriving comes from the scaremongering around Brexit,” Korwar says. “It’s a tongue-in-cheek play on the fact that there are more people coming and you’ll have to deal with it!” Through this defiance, Korwar takes clear pride in the knotty mix of his identity – harking back to the new India of the Mumbai hip-hop kids, as well as identifying with London’s cultural diversity. “I want the idea of brown pride to come through,” he says. “My voice is one amongst a thousand, but this record is a snapshot of something much greater than myself. It’s the chance to send a message.”
Arriving on a prevailing IDM/electronic breeze, clinical sound designer Detach’i is at his sweetest, emotive and detailed best for Aaron Funk aka Venetian Snares’ Timesig label, rinsing out a personalised intimacy from unwieldy Eurorack modules
“Much like its predecessor, 'Bones' manages to make the most of the possibilities modular systems offer, whilst avoiding their many pitfalls that can often turn such music into little more than a dry academic exercise. Indeed 'Bones' is a remarkably intimate album, written and recorded in the time following his father's death, and reflects this intense period of personal change in Joseph's life. "Creating this music was a therapy of sorts," Joseph recalls. "It was almost like a close friend being there for me, and it's something that I hope others can, perhaps, utilize in the same way."
The connection to his father is something that is reflected not just in the emotional intensity of 'Bones', but in the actual production itself. "My father and I were very close," he explains. "Whilst he was sick with cancer I bought him a guitar as he wanted to learn how to play, just to have something to do while he was getting treated. After he passed away my mother gave me the guitar to have as a sort of memory of him. I had the idea to record some sounds and music on the guitar and load it onto granular sample players on the modular synth so I could make new music from those sounds as a sort of tribute to my dad. You can hear some of those sounds on a few of the tracks here like 'Arrivals', 'Motion in the Living Room' and 'Undimension'."
The resulting album grapples with the intensity of these emotions. But for all their weight, tracks like 'Saugerties Road', ‘Rockledge 3A’ and ‘Antumalal’ transform that heaviness into something warm and comforting whilst the aforementioned 'Arrivals' or ‘Wand’ ultimately achieve some kind of escape velocity and soar. Even though 'Bones' is about endings and finding closure, it also looks forward to new beginnings. "It was something very much on my mind throughout recording this album," he relates, "ends being beginnings and beginnings being the end. Cycles of time and how time works, it's all reflected throughout the album right down to how the tracks are ordered."
Ranging from blissful ambience and guileless, starry eyed melodies, to intricate claustrophobic rhythms that forever sound close to collapsing in on themselves before expanding into bold new patterns, 'Bones' is the work of a producer who, twenty years on from his debut, continues to push the boundaries of electronic music.”
The label behind Dominique Lawalree’s much-adored compilation pick out a real abstract beauty by cellist Leila Bordreuil for their 4th release, coming off like some dream meeting of Anne Guthrie and Kevin Drumm as overseen by Eliane Radigue.
Recorded in a single afternoon in Brooklyn, Leila’s debut album of unprocessed amplified cello recordings in ‘Headflush’ render an arrestingly detached yet immersive perspective on her instrument - which is commonly known to mirror the range of the human voice. With this is mind, Leila’s recordings speak to a sense of disembodiment or an out of body experience, drawing the instrument’s Ur voice out of itself and into space where she reinforces and makes it sigh thick smoky tones pealing with stressed partials in a way that wouldn’t sound out of place on the ‘Eraserhead’ soundtrack. It’s most excellent.
“Leila Bordreuil is a Brooklyn-based cellist, composer, and sound-artist from France. She accesses concepts as diverse as jazz, contemporary classical, noise, and experimental traditions but adheres to her own vision of sound. The New York Times has described her work as “steadily scathing music, favoring long and corrosive atonalities”. Driven by a fierce interest in pure sound and inherent texture, Bordreuil challenges conventional cello practice through extreme extended techniques and amplification methods. Her composed works frequently incorporate sound-spatialization by way of site-specific pieces and multichannel installations.”
Milan and Haunter Records’ Heith pushes into the abstract with mulchy brownian motion on the first dispatch from Saucers, a new label minted specifically for his gear.
The first saucer sees Heith shed further signifiers of his sound, ego, aesthetic, in pursuit of an illusive/elusive and vaporous muse that leaves much more to the imagination. Over its five tracks ‘Mud’ explores a multiplicity of possibility in each moment, masking more layers and intriguing sensation with each careful stroke, from the pensively pregnant ‘Eva2’ thru the arrhythmic and dissonant keen of ‘Extra Melma’, to the power ambient drag dynamics factored in ‘Yoga Of Stealth’, to the greased pig wriggle and calligraphic slashes of ‘?’, and the blossoming fractals of ‘Mud Queen’.
The Fear Ratio (Mark Broom and James Ruskin) and Kahn remix cuts from dBridge’s 2018 LP in rugged style
Following last year’s ‘Live’ EP for Skam, TFR turn ‘Nauchtlus’ into a sourly dissonant neck-snapper powered by Black & Decker drill style 808 trills - the best thing we’ve heard from them - while Kahn chases up his 2018 remix of Trends & Boylan with an unexpectedly blue, downbeat take on the sci-fi romance of ‘They Loved.’
Bassbin-worrying rufige from Charlie Baldwin aka Kasket aka Cocktail Pary Effect on Pinch’s Tectonic Label
In pursuit of his 2018 EP for Cold, CPE steps up to its parent label with a granite cut quartet of heaviness, displaying some serious subbass nous in the writhing minimalism of the title tune, while ‘Triops’ hinges hard drums around a heart monitor bleep, and ‘When The Gun Claps’ harness a proper bone-rattling swing groove beside the ruthless rail gunning drum attack of ‘I Feel Sick.’
The wickedly ugly side of ‘90s hardcore rears its mucky bounce in Fine Jewellers’ debut barrage for Bank Records NYC. RIYL Nasenbluten, ATR, Fanny
Taking cues from Atari Teenage Riot’s shouty angst as much as the balls-to-the-wall pelt of Nasenbluten and a sound engineer’s worst nightmares, ‘Braindance Through The Midnight D-Beat’ unleashes four assaults on the senses, running amok from the range packet anthem ‘Heated Display’ to the pound of ‘Outlawed’ on the front, then taking no prisoners with the galloping breakcore force of ‘Unreasonable Rider’, and coming a little different with the balance of synthier, bittersweet pathos and ramrod rhythms in ‘Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy’. Aces.
In 12 heavy D&B mutations, ’Samurai Hannya’ gathers a group portrait of Berlin’s Samurai Music family. Listen out for strong gear in speaker-worrying subs of The Untouchables’ ‘Bushi Ronin’, a clenched hardstep bomb by Last Life, the bestial gnash of Torn, and a rare, ace outing by label head Geoff Presha
“The new Samurai Music series of 12"s - Samurai Hannya - are based on the mythical masks of a Noh drama (a form of traditional Japanese theatre). Hannya masks capture the stages of transformation of a female character as she undergoes a metamorphosis into a demon / ogre. This transformation is caused by deep sadness and anger, fuelled by intense jealousy. The mask embodies the resentment and fierce obsession of this character. Its horrible look gives us an impression that it is not just a grotesque monster, but that it also expresses the deep sadness of human beings. A cautionary tale of the power of negative emotions portrayed aptly in this infamous play. Hannya masks are also very popular with tattooists around the world along with many other characters and symbols from the fascinating Japanese mythology.
The 12”s for the Samurai Hannya series are named after these 3 stages / masks and feature all new tracks from the Samurai family of artists created specifically for this project. The series introduces a new Russian artist Roho, plus the first two collaborations from label head Presha (with Homemade Weapons & Ancestral Voices) alongside label regulars Homemade Weapons, The Untouchables, Torn, Artilect, Last Life, Antagonist, and for the first time on Samurai, Weaponry artists Torana.”
Tremulous blends of solo piano and warbling soul songwriting from nuanced newcomer Evadney. RIYL Serpentwithfeet, Arca, Bjork
“Born and raised in the UK, Evadney grew up in a large Caribbean family with a Jamaican mother and Barbadian father. Influenced by old school soca and calypso tunes through to artists such as Kate Bush, Bjork and Grace Jones, he later studied the likes of John Cale, Stockhausen and Musique concrete during his MA in Music Composition at Goldsmiths University. He's now based in Brighton, splitting his time between making music, working at a charity organization and DJing at the weekends.
Debuting early in 2019, Evadney's music is ultimately inspired by the politics of sexuality, identity and his own intersectionality. Electronic, poetic, melancholic and cinematic, his productions are both leftfield and pop whilst always featuring a compelling narrative.
The Unfurls is about states of transformation, into more beauty, more knowing and more strength to create and move the pieces of my life. When I think of what is important for me to be doing in my music right now, it is to unfurl and to be seen as who I really am so it happily makes sense to me that these songs are each an embodiment of that. - Evadney”
Sam KDC syncs deep into the grey area between techno, D&B and noise in the ‘Omen’ album. Tempering his chest-bursting emosh tendencies in favour of more abstract signposts and textural expression, he also locks down to a hoofing style of drum programming with galvanising his galloping rhythms with alloy-cast kicks and hard-bitten percussion.
The sound is ascetic to a T, shorn of melody or soft edges and delivered with blank-eyed, bruising blows in fathomless space with the likes of ‘False Awakening’, the hydraulic pump of ‘Trial By Fire’, and the stiff churn of ‘Into The Ground’, before ‘the gnashing breaks of ‘Coup De Grace’ remind of the artist’s D&B provenance, and then it’s back to the nasty stuff with a salty alacrity in the meat-beating ‘Eye for an Eye’, the bone-rattling flow of ‘Lead Me Into Temptation’, and the wall of noise finale ‘Omen Rising.’
Originally released in 1990, Larry Heard and Kriss Coleman recorded several more selections and planned to do many more. However, circumstances did not permit any of those plans to come to fruition, making this recording the sole commercial offering resulting from their collaborative efforts. All three of the mixes from the original 12" are included along with an edit of the "club" version that was not included on the original 12."
Avant, off-road rap styles fresh outta Atlanta, GA
“A short potent rap EP with meandering textures all stemming from the animated messianic class-chaotic (bourgeois to hood and back in 10 seconds) universe of Negashi Armada's mind. All beats except for Marta Martyr (that beat is a collaboration between me and Spaghetti J) entirely produced by Negashi Armada.”
Classy, luminous album of synth-pop and early techno-house-influenced songs from Ascetic House originals Body of Light, channelling the perky glamour of ‘80s pop and the sleaze of early ‘90s NYC dance music - think Depeche Mode meets early Joey Beltram at a Stranger Things-themed club night
“Birthed from Arizona’s regaled Ascetic House collective, Body of Light is a dark synth-pop outfit comprised of young brothers Andrew and Alexander Jarson. What began as a vehicle for their exploration of noise and sound during their early teens has evolved into an established production over the last decade, as Body of Light continues to carve out their own style of complex, structured, and moving dancefloor electronics.
Their music is not only individually personal, but drawn from experiences shared between the two brothers – and calls on elements of new wave, freestyle, goth, and techno to create timeless and singular tracks without fear of trend or passing fashion.
On their third album Time to Kill, Body of Light refines their brand of cold and driving synth pop with a bold pallet of sounds and a focus on uncharted technique and purpose. Like the pale digital stare of the modern devices surrounding our daily lives, the album weaves stories of love and obsession in an era of technical bondage and fleeting exhilaration. Written over a period of intense and profound change, Time to Kill stands as a startling reminder of how important our existence truly is. Haunting keys, swelling pads, and punching rhythms score their work as Alex Jarson presents an alluring and romantic dialogue with confident projection. The title single “Time to Kill” kicks off the album with a merciless signature beat, complimented by distorted sample patterns against an infectious, moving bass groove that invites you to “let the memories fade.” The follow up single “Don’t Pretend” invokes sparkling nostalgia and innocence over a dark and driving beat paired with vintage electronic movements. The haunting “Dangerous”, slows the pace with its pendulum-like rhythm and ominous intonation, falling between a hopeful synth pop ballad and shadowy dirge – a slow dance for the sunrise set.
Produced by Matia Simovich at Infinite Power Studios in Los Angeles and mastered by Josh Bonati, Time to Kill shines with new direction and new intention through lustrous production and innovative songwriting.”
‘Kiri Variations’ is Clark’s first self-released album on Throttle. It’s a soundtrack-like suite of neo-classical ambient styles stemming from his work on Euros Lyn’s 2018 TV miniseries.
"Mysterious and morbidly beautiful pieces driven by piano, harpsichord, clarinet, strings, electronics and voice are interspersed with fabulously unusual and highly original curveballs: Odd-in-a-brilliant-way, the faux naïve ‘Kiri’s Glee’, evokes traveling minstrels of yore accidentally eating the wrong ‘shrooms, and ‘Coffin Knocker’ has diffracted psych feel, like David Axelrod’s work with the Electric Prunes, but chopped, screwed and scorched.
‘Forebode Knocker’ is darkly funky, like the kind of lost diggers’ nugget unearthed and sampled by RZA, whilst the sonically-perfect ‘Primary Pluck’ unfurls exquisitely, swaying slowly ever forward like a funeral march. ‘Cannibal Homecoming’ is nothing short of Clark’s most song-based composition ever, featuring augmented human voice as evident elsewhere and also a fully-fledged vocal sung by him. ‘Kiri Variations’ started life as the score to the BAFTA-nominated TV program ‘Kiri’, but only a small (and highly effective) portion of the music recorded was used – intentionally sparingly – by director Euros Lyn. That first incarnation has since grown and morphed intosomething entirely of its own being; a proper artist album.
“In addition to my usual methods of controlled randomness and tangential ideas, the TV commission was a prominent spark for new approaches. It’s a great balancing contrast with the solipsistic studio album”, Clark explains. The record allows simplicity and playfulness to shine through: “It’s a skeleton of an album, reduced to bare essentials, although it started out rather dense - the thing that takes time is making it succinct."explains Clark. “Certain parts are also what you could call anti muso – for example the recorder on ‘Kiri’s Glee’ is totally out of tune – but it sounds so colourful. I can’t resist the primary paint of acoustic instruments; it’s an antidote to frictionless digital music."
"When we look back now over our catalogue we realise how lucky we were to be working with so many of the world’s great artists.” - Peter Gabriel
"Launched 30 years ago in 1989, Real World Records has grown into a label of wide-ranging, world-class music from all corners of the globe. There are an enormous variety of styles, moods and genres within the music catalogue that bear the famous colour bar logo but they all have these things in common - the quality of the recording, the superb production and music of great passion. “
Many of the label’s releases are recorded at Real World Studios where the live interactive spaces provide an environment capable of capturing the excitement and vitality of musicians in performance. “Whatever the music, whatever the technology, great records come from great performances.” Peter Gabriel
Rolling ambient techno and tech-house treks by Romania’s Ada Kaleh back for 2nd helpings on R&S
“Musical cues for the Ada Kaleh sound come from the varied likes of Boards of Canada, Sigur Ros and Future Sound of London amongst others, evident in the dreamlike focus on natural sounds that pervade the two tracks of this release - A-side "Chemare cosmică" draws the listener in with a percolating main synth riff that burbles along like a winding mountain stream, underpinned by the pulsing rhythm track and swirling lysergic synth washes oscillate through the track like vapour trails. On the flip "Valea ancestrală" provides a more stripped back vibe, rattling percussion and sketched out bandpassed chords jostle with the occasional synth swirl to mesmeric effect.”
Elite Beats (aka Gulls) takes cues from deep Afro jazz styles for his first 7” in this guise
A-side seemingly spies Salah Ragab ‘By The Light of The Pyramids’ from a smoky street level with dusty dub touches, while ‘Postcards from Gortupal’ strides out on a balmier strand of Ethiopiques-inspired vibes buoyed with floating organ and elegant, swaying rhythm.
Spanning a career well into its third decade, Spoon returns with a Best Of compilation, ‘Everything Hits At Once: The Best Of Spoon’. In addition to the 12 fan-adored tracks making up this album, Spoon return with the bold new ‘No Bullets Spent’.
"How many rock bands from the past 25 years could get away with a greatest hits album? Spoon stand alone, with a career-spanning retrospective culled from all over their unique songbook. It’s a flawless compilation of their best-known, bestloved tunes yet it’s still full of surprises - the only thing you could expect from a band that’s spent their whole career taking people by surprise."
Guitarist Luis Fernandes appear to make the air sing on his fully fledged a solo debut proper for Room40 following his billowing 2018 collab with Joana Gama. RIYL Rafael Toral, Steve Hauschildt, Fennesz, Lawrence English
“For the first solo record under his own name, Luís Fernandes chose an on-point title that echoes in one word a constant feeling throughout Demora. Demora means ‘delay’ in Portuguese. Depending on the way you use it on a sentence, it can also mean that something is taking too long or it’s making someone wait for someone or something. Demora doesn’t take too long to show you its intentions, but it leaves you waiting. It tricks you to think to wait for the take-off until you realise you’re already in
It’s all part of the process that Luís embarked to create Demora. For this piece he decided to work in a different way from what he’s used to. The desire to create a piece with a constant flow with little variations was the starting point for his new album. Armed with a modular synthesizer, he recorded everything in one take to give the core structure of the album a unified sound that would create a permanent relationship with the listener.
Doing it in one take shaped the fundamentals for Demora. The flow of the improvisation gave room for Luís to play around with the structure and refine the sounds that now populate the main narrative of this 35-minute piece, separated in five different chapters.
The middle sections of Demora, ‘Demora Pt. 1’ and ‘Demora Pt.2’, sound like a reward. Not that you needed one. If you arrived there and felt tricked about the take-off, the slow and glimmering harmonies will provide the comfort you needed all along. It’s here that Demora shows how beautifully crafted it is, how the details aren’t just details. They’re the tiny screws that make the machine operate into a subtle kosmische lullaby. The details aren’t there to distract you from the main thing, they are there for you to embrace the core and follow the same flow, the same path, that Luís did when Demora took off in his synthesizer.
It took time for Luís to publish something solo under his own name. After years under various aliases and three beautiful releases with Joana Gama, including the Room40 release “At The Still Point Of The Turning World” (2018), Luís Fernandes has flourished with this mesmerising sonic experience.”
Smudged, balmy Balearic chug and woozy far eastern vibes, teamed with an ace, New Beat-esque remix by Suzanne Kraft
“Olaf Blanch debuts on Modern Obscure Music with the Borealis EP, which also features a remix by Suzanne Kraft. The Barcelona based producer presents four original tracks that explore different Balearic soundscapes, from the exciting adventure of Nur Yawa to the deep ambience of Birds. For reference points, think Mark Barrott’s Islands project or some of the great Ambient records of the 1990s. This isn’t all. Suzanne Kraft turns Nur Yawa on its head, creating a catchy and very danceable Nu Beat styled remix.”