Gnarled Midwest acid techno badness from Heckadecimal on Philly’s faithfully noisy Great Circles
“2018 played host to a bumper crop of sounds from some of Philly’s grittiest, including Great Circles mainstays M//R and Chaperone. To close out the year that was, we are pleased to present Heckadecimal’s ‘Murder Tape.’
A Minneapolis-based producer and acid auteur, Heckadecimal has been a fixture within the vibrant Midwestern electronic music community for nearly 20 years. Founder of the legendary ‘Anti-human’ events and co-curator of the ever-prolific Always Human Tapes imprint – alongside Ryan Wurst and Peter Lansky – Heckadecimal’s reputation is one of unrelenting creativity and tireless advocacy for sonic experimentation. His work has found its way to light via a slew of pseudonyms and stage monikers, including The Worm, noface and Wonder Sirens.
In short – Heckadecimal lives and breathes the sonic matter that he leaves pouring out of studio monitors, busted bar systems and finely tuned rave stacks, wherever his travels take him.
Live performance lies at the core of Heckadecimal’s practice. When he stormed through Inciting HQ in Philly earlier this summer, he took command over an arsenal of hardware that reminded us of how Octave One or Shawn Rudiman might show up. These were machines that he had lived with; touched with custom modifications, hand-drawn stickers and pockmarks incurred in battle, one got the sense that the gear was a personal extension of the artist.
Perhaps it’s a bit maudlin, but we feel a certain kinship with this project. Indeed, these tracks at times feel very much of a piece with the gnarled tonalities in which our stable typically traffics; all low-slung riddims that reach at equal lengths towards mutated IDM aesthetics and post-Packard Plant techno extrusions. These are future perfect grooves that glide along under the vast Midwestern sky, providing a fertile communication conduit with the City of Brotherly Love.”
Ruddy EBM sleaze form Succhiamo, returning to Antinote with a 6-track dancefloor slap down
Leading on from their super rudimentary debut, there’s more glistening EBM flesh on show in ‘Mani In Fuoco’, firing off some strong dancefloor bullets in the scaly, serpentine writhe of their title track, and at a rapid tilt recalling Nitzer Ebb’s ‘Alarm’ in ‘Desiderio di violenza’, and what sounds like Marie Davidson meets Beau Wanzer in the clenched, metallic funk of ‘Vecchio’.
Hospital Productions' hook up with vaunted fashion designer Yang Li for this crazy one-off edition featuring material recorded by Justin Broadrick for Li's by now infamous funeral-themed AW18 Paris fashion week show, plus an alternate 12 minute version, and another 12 minute reworking by Prurient. The vinyl edition is adorned with what we can only describe as enamelled headstones on the sleeve, plus beautiful gloss leterpress design by Li himself.
Not your typical seasonal paean, ‘Christmas’ was inspired by, in Broadrick’s own words; “the onset of the Christmas period and the onset of emotions and feelings of nostalgia, joy and sadness that the period often evokes”.
Considered a classic in the Jesu songbook, it'ss now paired with ‘Life Mass’, a new version written for London-based Chinese fashion designer Yang Li’s Paris A/W ’18 runway soundtrack, as well as a killer, keeling, noisy overhaul by Prurient.
The dense, chest-bursting post-rock/shoegaze appeal of the original still stands, but, for our money, it’s now bettered by the new material. ‘Life Mass’ is effectively the inverse of ‘Christmas’, catching Broadrick at his most vulnerable and sublime with plangent vox framed by a slow, tear-jerking snowfall of guitars, whereas Prurient renders the title track from a whole other, frosty-window perspective primed for when xmas all gets a bit too much and you need to reset.
Prosaic drum programming upcycled with shiny softsynths.
“Having previously featured on BLCR and our sister label Pyramids, Ganz Feld has quietly carved out a reputation for himself with his distinctive dreampunk vision, incorporating twisted beats and melancholic undertones into his unmistakeable driving sound.
'Urania' sees Ganz Feld yet again at the top of his game on his Dream Catalogue debut. Straddling a tightrope between left field trap and future-conscious hardvapour, this is pulsating music for the digital age. The urgency of Ganz Feld's dystopian sound permeates through this contemporary music for shadow dwellers in what is perhaps his most accomplished effort to date - a warped love letter to the future and all its many prospects.”
Over 3.5 hours of sublime, milky ambience to bathe in, coaxed from classical records, found sounds, tape and hardware by Will Long a.k.a. Celer
“Part 1 of a series of pieces under the umbrella title "Oasis", created for an exhibit to re-create an unnatural atmosphere of an isolated area in a desert. Mixed and performed in real time February - June, 2017.
Found sounds, field recordings, Casio VZ-1, Yamaha DX7, EH Memory Man, Roland RE-501, Electronica LZ-01, reel flanger, turntable, classical records, H3000D/SX, Sony Tapecorder by Will Long.”
About time! Drexciya’s seminal Afrofuturist album finally sees reissue with Clone Classic Cuts, regaling the recordings of four young sons of an electrician from Flint, Michigan, USA, who pay dues to the endless inspiration of Kraftwerk
When it was originally released in 1995 with the prefacing info about four brothers, ‘Elektroworld’ became a crucial part of the Drexciyan mythology. Prefaced by a promo sheet with the suggestive info outlined above, the album was quite easily detectable as a Drexciyan production, but it wasn’t until 2008 when Warpmart spilt the beans, that ‘Elektroworld’ was officially identified as a James Stinson production. For many disciples of the the late great genius, the album includes some of Stinson’s definitive cuts in the spine-freezing ‘Japanese Electronics’ and the elegant funk of ‘Mystery World’ and ‘Midnight Drive’. But that’s not discount the rest of the set - there’s pure Drexciyan gold in the vocodered ace ‘Future Tone’ and the heart-fluttering chord changes of ’Silicon World’.
Stockholm LTD captain Pår Grindvik works out pendulous, brooding techno styles bordering on IDM/electronica
‘Trails’ is the bluer of the two, scorching around and off a beat cloaked in sweeping, melancholic pads and keening dissonance to a kind of post-rock-y climax.
‘The Right To Be Forgotten’ is shadowier, but more aggressive, laving the drums to a seething syncopation driven by low low bass and almost neuro-style D&B synths.
Hypnagogic, transportive collage and ambient composition from bod [包家巷], an L.A.-based A/V artist from the underbelly of “weird soundcloud”, here following up his tape debut for Knives with two durational works, plus remixes by Flora Yin-Wong and M.D. James
bod [包家巷], real name Nicholas Zhu, is part of a new wave of artists and labels including Nozomu Matsumoto and Quantum Natives who are shaping music and art from the virtual realm forward. In ‘The Recurrence of Infections’, Zhu terraforms layered electronics, melancholy chanson, Far eastern instrumentation and sci-fi cinematic tropes in the richly detailed, 38-minute title track, to offer something like the soundtrack to a scrolling tour of his Museum of Virtual Art, while the ‘Infection Supplement’ extends another 9 minutes of abstract, cinematic arrangement recalling the surreal, experiential feel of Kenji Yamamoto’s +you & space x album.
The remixers tactfully reduce ‘The Recurrence of Infections’ into equally strange but succinct knots of nonlinear, amorphous form, with Flora Yin-Wong suggestively limning a calm space at the edge of storm, whereas M.D. James homes in on certain aspects of the vocal and keys, rendering them in a milky ambient light.
Martyn grips YAK for a terrific trio of broken beat and D&B zingers following his standout cut on 3024’s recent V/A 12”
With the switch up from dry footwork-style toms and warm chords into drum funk D&B, ‘Rhodes Island’ brings 3024 right back to root in freshest style. The root-toms reappear as a sorta of leitmotif in ‘Ocean Floor’, but this time on a pendulous broken beat tip underlaid with ‘floor-engulfing subs, and ‘Don Gerno’ pushes that flex farther out for the brukkers, close to Martyn’s own sound, but with exacting edits and recoiling, ricocheting dynamic of his own.
Perdu does smart, rolling Italo-electro and broken house rolige for Optimo Music
Check for the punchy drums and entrancing arps of ‘Road To Yuzu’ for a killer Italo-electro style, and ‘Anxious World’ for a deep acid-Italo-breakbeat style, and ‘Phasing In’ for a stealthier, trippier, cosmic vibe.
Rude fusions of dry techno, hip hop swagger, and ‘floor-melting acid industrialism outta Kazan and Moscow, by the guys behind Opal Tapes’ ‘U S S R (Ur Social Staus Resistance) comp
Spearheading a new movement of icy, tuff dance music from Russia, Yung Acid lead the way with mutated takes on American and UK styles, generating strong moves in the ghetto banger ‘late’ for fans of White material, also with the head-swilling acid-electro flow of ‘Serpentine (Dirty master)’, and their NoLa 3-step electro twyster, ‘Jap’.
‘Wize Music’ is a jaw-dropping introduction to the new age electronic world of Dennis Wise - the missing link between Herbie Hancock’s ‘Rock-it’, Daevid Allen’s Gong and Bill Laswell’s Material, all of whom he contributed to in some form or other. Combine two rare as f**k LPs in one, including ‘Valhalla’ , which was pressed at Dynamic Sounds, Kingston, JA on the same day Big Youth were also cutting a record. If that backstory isn’t enough for ya, the music will send you reeling!
“Perhaps one of the most unique and unlikely exponents of the highly collectible genres of ambient electronics, experimental tape-music and PINA (Private Issue New Age) this English born Jamaican raised sound designer, artist and existentialist furrowed his own ublinkered path through lesser chartered electronic fields for many moons before eventually teaming up with Bill Laswell (with Material) and Daevid Allen in New York to bring self-taught synthesis to Gong during their most oblique periods. Creating two impossibly rare self pressed vinyl LPs of conceptual inner-visionary outer-galactic angular tonal-dronal alien-art soundscapes in the process, the man known under figure shifting guises such as Dennis Wise/Denis Weise/Dr. Wise etc, combined a culture of sound system circuitry and radiophonic trickery adding Tea-pot poetry and sci-fidelity future-folk to his magnetic mesh! Presented here as the first ever dedicated ize Music collection this record combines compositions spanning 1979-1984 in both a solo capacity as well as small-group projects featuring members of the Emerald Web band.
Imagine a comic book where a Funkenstein monster called “Laraaji-Scratch Perry” invaded your record shelf while Komendarek and Holger Czukay kept lookout… Dr. Dennis might be the only one Wise enough to outsmart all of them with his powerful amorphous anaesthetic.”
Temples of Jura roll out a synthy doozy with Fernando Pulichino’s cinematic debut as Filmico.
After releasing records for the past 10 years on modern disco labels including Bear Funk, Internasjonal and Gomma, Argentinian multi instrumentalist Flimico now commits to a classic late ‘70s/early ‘80s soundtrack style flush with warm analog synths owing much to the influence of Carpenter, Badalamenti and Johnny Jewel.
It's done with exacting amounts of emotive push and pull, coming riddled with evocative arps and bristling with bittersweet melodies that beckon eyes shut and a montage-like dream sequence to play out on the back of your ‘lids.