Boxed and Gobstopper don Mr. Mitch does his blue thing in two technoid rollers
In ‘Need More Fashion Friends’ his synths exasperatedly sigh at the state of shrill, posh twunts in the club while he dances and they check their phones and all wear the same fucking puffa jacket and big daft creps. ’Shirley Temple’ follows with a darker, more intense groove leavened by Mitch’s signature, wistful grime melodies.
Mad Decent’s “baby cuzzin”, Good Enuff, turn out cumbia/reggaeton/tarraxho/kuduro compatible pressure from Cuyo. Think this is what they used to call moombahton?
We advise heading straight to the warped slosh of their title cut, then the rapido remix of ‘Amazon’ by DJ NJ Drone for the strongest highlights.
"The project began as an experiment. Haley switched digital audio workstations, rebuilt his palette of sounds, and tasked himself with simply trying it out. The exercise freed him of expectations and permitted a process that echoed the tones of more immediate external environments. A gravity had seeped in; resulting material shifts between bleakness and sublime suspense, awe at the expanse of existing, in looking back and letting go. “It’s a sort of sad smile and a wave goodbye but at the same time hello, a 'welcome to your life’ moment,” Haley says. Take the storm pattern sequence from “Gaussian” to “Ultraﬁche of You”: a queasy, contemplative vignette rests on a single soft-synth cloud before the latter’s percussion ripples across the sky. With trademark stutters and swells, the composition conjures the sensation of searching in the afterglow. “It’s a love song, and I don’t write many of those.”
That duality — melancholy + optimism, then + now — permeates this widescreen collection. “Existence Schematic” takes ﬂight at night, “looking down at the landscape,” explains Haley, “seeing the lights in a schematic sort of way, wondering who or what is looking back up at me wondering the same things I am, the impact of a single existence, the end, the beginning, where it’s gone and going.” These are observations from this existential Persuasion System, and Haley hopes the music yields more, for others, that listeners may search for their own tension and release."
At the behest of NYC producer and John Zorn collaborator Marc Urselli, some of the world’s finest avant musicians, and filmmaker Jim Jarmusch, are paired together for the first time, with results that probe the gooch between free jazz and avant rock
“New York based producer Marc Urselli had the idea to bring people together who had never met before and let that meeting of minds create beautiful soundscapes. Film director and musician Jim Jarmusch, Sonic Youth co-founder and guitarist Lee Ranaldo shared space with versatile drummer Balázs Pándi for a night session at Urselli's EastSide Sound studio in downtown NY.
These are the unfiltered results. Absorbing instrumental patterns of cinematic sounds and improvised rhythms. No overdubs, no editing. All was recorded live and analog, produced and mixed by Marc Urselli. The front/back coverfotos were taken by photographer William Semeraro in Norway. That is why Marc Urselli gave all the songs titles inspired by Norwegian mythology.”
Siskiyou returns from a four-year hiatus with Not Somewhere, an album that finds band leader Colin Huebert (ex-Great Lake Swimmers) essentially in solo artist mode, writing and self-recording this new collection of tunes on his own, playing all the guitar, bass, keyboard and drum parts himself.
"Not Somewhere harkens back to Siskiyou’s magical and understated 2010 self-titled debut in this and other ways: the album’s production rekindles a homespun intimacy, where plain-spoken lyrics grapple with portraits of quiet quotidian despair, fragile existential horizon lines separating perseverance and defeatism, honest and unremarkable lives trapped in cultures of false consciousness, impossible desire, self-analysis and self-medication.
Following Siskiyou’s Polaris-nominated third full-length Nervous released in early 2015, Huebert was commissioned by New York-based artist/designer Stefan Sagmeister (of Sagmeister & Walsh) to write the theme song for The Happy Film, a feature-length movie accompaniment to “The Happy Show” installation project that had toured galleries in the mid-2010s – the art show and film themselves being ruminations on happiness that strongly echo Huebert’s own tone and sensibility. Sagmeister wanted the direct, unadorned aesthetic of early Siskiyou for the film music, leading Huebert to often write and record songs in the same day, in diaristic sketchbook form, without a thought towards the more ornate structures and developments of material he had just finished up with Nervous. This commission yielded the album’s title and the opening track “Stop Trying”(the eventual theme song for the movie) which includes a short looped clip of film dialogue repeating the line “trying is the problem; you’re trying to get somewhere as if you’re not somewhere”.
Huebert ended up with a dozen songs written under this influence, but shelved the recordings while real life took over: driven from Vancouver by skyrocketing rents and zombie capital that was increasingly leaving the city a shell of its former self, he relocated to Toronto with his young family. Returning to the material once resettled, Huebert finished up the record with contributions from various guest musicians on strings and horns (including cellist and labelmate Rebecca Foon from Saltland/Esmerine, and Destroyer regulars Joseph Shabason and JP Carter on horns and woodwinds). The result is a beautifully restrained and unvarnished song cycle of tunes anchored by acoustic guitar and brushed drumming, detailed with delicate textures, spartan melodic overdubs, and Huebert’s distinctively forthright, whisperingly confidential vocal delivery. From the austere Velvets-chug of “What Ifs” to the Elephant 6-inspired looseness of “Her Aim Is Tall” and “Stop Trying (jubilant reprise)” and the sparkling hush of atmospheric twilight folk-inflected pieces like “Temporary Weakness” and “Silhouette”, Not Somewhere is delicate and discreet yet wonderfully assured – a profoundly humble, wistfully observational and meditatively personal return for Huebert’s Siskiyou project.”
Istanbul’s international DJ, Baris K meets multi-instrumentalist Cem Yildiz for a wholly immersive, 45 minute trip that seamlessly blends Anatolian psych rock and cosmic disco
Unfurling 2 uninterrupted sides of ribboning guitar lines and subtly amorphous, acidic bass, ‘Demedim Mi’ is perhaps best considered a slower, lysergic answer to Villalobos’ ‘Fizheur Zieheuer’ played by a duelling Derdiyoklar İkilisi and Manuel Göttsching just after the hash kicks in. Put it on, forget what you were doing, lie down and let it take you on a proper magic carpet ride.
‘I Am Easy To Find’ is the band’s eighth studio album and the follow-up to 2017’s Grammy Awardwinning release ‘Sleep Well Beast’.
"The album features vocal contributions from Sharon Van Etten, Brooklyn Youth Chorus, Lisa Hannigan, Mina Tindle and more. As the album’s opening track ‘You Had Your Soul With You’ unfurls it’s so far, so National: a digitally manipulated guitar line, skittering drums, Berninger’s familiar baritone, mounting tension. Then around the 2:15 mark, the true nature of ‘I Am Easy To Find’ announces itself: The racket subsides, strings swell and the voice of long-time David Bowie bandmate Gail Ann Dorsey booms out - not as background vocals, not as a hook but to take over the song. Elsewhere it’s Irish singer songwriter Lisa Hannigan, or Sharon Van Etten, or Mina Tindle or Kate Stables of
This Is The Kit, or varying combinations of them. Also, The Brooklyn Youth Choir, whom Bryce Dessner had worked with before. There are choral arrangements and strings on nearly every track, largely put together by Bryce in Paris - not a negation of the band’s dramatic tendencies but a redistribution of them. “Yes, there are a lot of women singing on this, but it wasn't because, ‘Oh, let’s have more women’s voices,’” says Berninger. “It was more, ‘Let’s have more of a fabric of people’s identities.’ It would have been better to have had other male singers but my ego wouldn’t let that happen.”
West Coast G-funk specialist Dam-Funk beams a 2nd volume of ‘STFU’ for the sunny side
Nice and greasy vibes from top to tail, with neon-glittering diamonds awaiting your glyde in the heat haze of ‘Compos Mentis’, the rude late night squeeze of ‘Hood Biz’, and an unmissable uptempo swerve, ‘Deeper’ pretty much compatible with deep house and electro-soul flexes.
Batu hauls ass on a wriggly, bassy electroid house flex with ‘False Reeds for his Timedance institute
Going more low key and tucked than his previous string of bangers, he comes over all coy with the simmering, cut-up synth voices and eazy swang of ‘False Reeds’, and even slower, going for Parris’ slow-don crown with the woozy trills and trickling melodies of ‘Statin (Dub)’, all loosening your limbs for the deliquescent cyberdub dynamics of ‘Shiritani’.
Deep and rugged bruk-funk and acid parries from Human Resources, minting the Body Action Music label
The rusted breakbeat chops of ‘Desilu [U Edit]’ twyst like a frazzled Dolo Percussion workout on the top, nagged with sloshing, jazzy carillon licks but mostly all about the drums and nothing but.
Underneath, ‘Safe It Fits On Your Plate’ swerves into darker, undulating acid terrain in a style recalling Altered Natives at his nastiest with torrents of tarry acid and drum kit-down-a-staircase breaks.
On ‘No Keys’, Dommengang channel the wailing, psych rock abandon of their previous work into a lean, darkedged record coloured by loss. Guitarist Dan ‘Sig’ Wilson, bassist Brian Markham and drummer Adam Bulgasem have grown closer even as they live further apart. Shared personal loss and experience playing and touring has made time together both an escape and a release.
"‘No Keys’ was recorded with guitarist and engineer Tim Green (Joanna Newsom, Howlin’ Rain, Sleepy Sun, Fresh and Onlys, Golden Void) a close friend of the band. Dommengang captures their spontaneous energy by recording live with minimal overdubs. Skittering reverb lends Sig’s guitar solos a cosmic quality, while rippling distortion add depth and weight to Markham and Bulgasem’s hypnotic grooves.
Guest vocals from Camilla Saufly-Mitchell of Golden Void on ‘Jerusalem Cricket’ add a perfect counterpoint to Markham’s cries of “No Keys”, while Adam Parks added buzzing organ overtones to album closer ‘Happy Death (Her Blues II)’. ‘No Keys’ finds rock’s primeval power alive and well and answers its call. It is a soundtrack to a personal journey or to your next road trip. It speaks to the explorer, and to the abandon of those willing to go all in. It is for the rocker giving it all, living out of a van, without a key to a permanent home."
Lightly spread Balearic smarm and pastel-shaded ambience recorded in Perth, Australia, 2015
“Spring might not yet have sprung, but the Growing Bin is always in bloom. After brightening our days with the opiate beauty of Barthel, Bohm and Bauer and the dusky grafts of Moon B last year, Basso’s well tended imprint begins 2016 with an antipodean gem. The green fingered, or thumbed, among you might recognise A.R.T. Wilson from his time in the Growing Bin a while back, when he soothed our cares with the drifting dreamscape of ‘Overworld’. Now the sometime club menace returns to Hamburg’s finest label in the company of numerical pioneer Eleventeen Eston AKA John Tanner for another journey into the heart of the horizontal.
Setting up camp where the Swan River meets the Indian Ocean, Wilson and Tanner tuned into nature, translating the warm sun, sea air and blue sky into a postcard from paradise. Lithe clarinet dances around tranquil piano, relaxed guitar decorates velvet synth textures and unhurried percussion makes an occasional appearance, as if to remind us that time’s still passing. Employing an innovative alfresco recording technique, Andy and John invited members of the local animal community to join their jam sessions, saving a Blue Swimmer Crab from the flames of the barbecue and encouraging him to claw the ivories.
Drop the needle and drift away on the distant ocean of “Pilot”, freefall into the soothing ambience of ‘Further Than Your Headlights’, and let “Sun Room” guide you gently back to terra firma. The dream team of Australian musicians (not to mention a very talented crustacean), come together on one vinyl – and it’s better than you could possibly imagine.”
Zombie slugs for the big rooms with a mix of lunk-headed techno grinders, swingers and skudgy shifters
He appears to imagine Actress at Berghain with the rasping sock and cavernous dimensions of ‘Void’, while ‘Bleed’ shifts its big boned knocks with gritty friction at 120bpm, and ‘Emerald’ rolls off the bone with sullen swagger and cranky metallic tones.
It gets messier herein with the agitated, aggy flex of ‘Threshold’ on a scintillating sort of future ‘ardcore parry, and ‘Zexor’ finds him splashing about in a murky, acidic puddles of bumpty techno-house in a style recalling Galcher Lustwerk or DJ Richard.