Proper dancefloor dreadnaughts from Nkisi for Warp’s reheated Arcola label, binding Congolese rhythms with Mittel European hardcore styles as you’ve rarely heard them before.
Landing after Rian Treanor’s opening gambit Contraposition and 2814’s Pillar, this plate catches some serious heat from NON figurehead Nkisi, slicing off a sick full frontal showcase of her signature battering ram rhythms and blend of intense, needle-toothed synths with noxious gloomcore pads.
In effect, these are the latest examples of Nkisi’s unique form of up-to-the-minute, mutant folk music; four mutable grooves that twist the bones of later ‘90s brutalist aerobic mysticism between the Hecate or Christoph De Babalon-esque gloom of The Dark Orchestra and the brittle syncopation of Violent Tendencies on the A-side, and over to the ravenous Cold Rush cavalcade of G.E.O. and her frenetic, pitching stepper, Dark Noise.
Unmissable, this, liike.
Basic Rhythm knuckles out two technoid grime hybrids for Warp’s exhumed sublabel, Arcola
‘Dough Boy’ is a tightly packed fusion of elements from jackin’ ‘80s Chi-house, ‘90s jungle and techno pads, and ‘00s grime, down with a magpie style of the ‘00s.
‘Can’t You See?’ then flags up his early hardcore and jungle inspirations with blocks chops of breathy diva vox and gloomy pads locked off in 8-bar grime patterns.
Renaissance lute plater Van Wissem rocks out with filmmaker and musician Jim Jarmusch
"Experimental lute player Jozef Van Wissem and acclaimed film director and musician Jim Jarmusch have a working relationship that dates back to 2006, when they ran into each other on the street in New York City and quickly struck up a friendship. Van Wissem contributed to the soundtrack for Jarmusch’s 2013 movie Only Lovers Left Alive, and the two have collaborated on three previous studio albums.
An Attempt to Draw Aside the Veil delves into the theology of William Blake and Emanuel Swedenborg, this time also exploring the work of Russian occultist and philosopher Helena Blavatsky. The album is mostly instrumental, so the dialogue between the esoteric thinkers who inspired it and Van Wissem and Jarmusch is expressed in the song titles — fittingly arcane phrases like “Concerning the White Horse,” “The Two Paths,” “When the Sun Rises Do You Not See A Round Disc of Fire.”
Floating Points drops his astral disco roller 'Peoples Potential' backed with the uptempo electro-jazz of 'Shark Chase' for all the beat fiends.
The A-side has already been deployed over the previous months by sure hands from Gilles Peterson to Four Tet but the effect of heavenly harmonised contours and simple but irrefutably funked percussion certainly hasn't worn off yet.
The flipside 'Shark Chase' concentrates on the Detroit/Jazzwise end of his ouevre, using rough padded kicks a la Theo Parrish with wandering keys and a swollen electro-etched bassline to make his own mark on the style. The effect is something like Omar-S jamming with The Tribe round at C2's pad, and just as cool as you'd imagine.
‘Sounds from the Periphery’ surveys liminal ambient and small sound electronics from contemporary US experimental quarters
There’s always a danger with this stuff to fall into tepid, wishy washy sentimentality or abstract nothings, and some of it definitely does, but if you want the highlights, listen out for Carly Banton’s glassy vignette ‘Cave World’; Felisha Ledesma channelling her namesake felciia Atkinson in the haptic rustle of ‘Carrot Cake’; the curious whorls of Ahnnu’s ‘Rrandolph’; a slow-motion glitter bomb from Devonwho; the uon-esque crackle and keen of Kohl’s piece; and the glistening timbre of Ben Glas’ ’Spatial Melody (for Cameron Hawkey)’.
Soundboy supreme, Ossia sends us reeling with an immense debut album of technoid dub brutalism for his staunch allies at Blackest Ever Black. A massive RIYL Demdike Stare, Wasteland, Jay Glass Dubs, The Bug, Jon Hassel...
Long in the works and properly worth the wait, ‘Devil’s Dance’ is a deliriously strong summation of Ossia’s singular style. Dread-filled and fevered, it marks the Bristol/Berlin-hailing producer as a master at negotiating negative space and bending styles to his will, taking what he needs from grime & dubstep, jazz, techno and post-industrial music, and warping it all with an uncanny sleight of hand that only comes from proper dedication to dub craft.
Most brilliantly, nothing is square or regular in Ossia’s sound world. Edges are consistently smudged and slanted, sounds bleed into one another with organic form, but, like a backyard/spareroom ganja farmer, his skill lies in pruning punctuations, allowing his forms to grow wild, whilst knowing where and when to cut and splice. Now harvested, his crop is effectively a highly potent batch with a perfect balance of meditative and psychoactive content.
From the gauntleted noise sculpture of ‘Concrete’, to the weightless skank and skronk of ‘Radiation’, thru the heaving masses of his ‘Devil’s Dance’ and ‘Hell Version’, thru the spectral ephemera of ‘Inertia’ and the 23 minutes of perceptive chicanery in ‘Vertigo’, you have one of the strongest dub records you'll hear for time.
Kevin Palmer unravels a suite of dusky, strolling groves and claggy, weathered electronics for 12th Isle’s 6th release, after gems from Ramzi, Cru Servers, Palta & Ti, and X.Y.R.
Spotted on a handful of strong underground labels such as Opal Tapes, No Corner, and Astro:Dynamics since the start of this decade, BAT has consistently brought a low key and economic yet distinctive style of hardware-derived music to the table, variously testing his chops in mutant configurations.
On ‘Enginetics & Plasmalterations’ we find his wandering vibes directed into some of his straightest-playing grooves. It starts up gingerly with the stumbling ephemera of ‘Vivi-Q Flight Path’, but finds it feet in slow, rolling structures that drift from soggy dub in ‘Orbitiara’ to the blunted, crackling jag of ‘Nick and Kev Set Controls for The waning Moon’ with Mr. Beatnik, and brilliantly shapeshifting into more asymmetric structures with the vaporous yet angular swang of ‘Unfathomed States’ and a pulsating abstract named ‘Extinct Song’.
The result is evidently BAT’s most rounded and smartly sequenced LP to date, if you ask us.
Yorkshire journeyman Chapman returns with tales to tell about the ‘True North’ - “…they think we write about the truth ‘cos we’re not clever enough to lie…”
“The masterful follow-up to his universally celebrated 2017 album 50, Michael Chapman’s True North finds the elder statesman of British songwriting and guitar plumbing an even deeper deep and honing an ever keener edge to his iconic writing. This authoritative set of predominantly new, and completely devastating, songs hews to a more intimate sonic signature—more atmospheric, textural, and minimalist than 50, stately and melancholy in equal measure. Recorded in rural West Wales, True North unflinchingly surveys home and horizon, traveling from the Bahamas to Texas to the Leeds of Chapman’s childhood, haunted by the mirages of memory and intimations of mortality. Joining him on this introspective journey is a cast of old friends and new disciples: once again Steve Gunn produces and plays guitar, and fellow UK songwriting hero Bridget St John sings, collaborating with cellist Sarah Smout and legendary pedal steel player BJ Cole, who has accompanied everyone from John Cale to Scott Walker to Terry Allen to Björk.”
Typically charming mix of melodic ambient house, electronica and latinate breaks from James Place, for fans of Seefeel, Susumu Yokota, Fred P, Karen Gwyer...
“James Place returns with Still Waves To A Whisper (fourth release on Umor Rex). Flitting between the dreamworld of hauntological synth music and hypnotic techno functionality, Still Waves To Whisper showcases James Place's continuing development of dramatic (and varied) sound worlds.
Musically, Still Waves To A Whisper contains both some of the most immediately danceable and straight up beautiful tracks of James Place's career. Utilising voice samples from the same source as his last album, Voices Bloom, opener 'Known Cry' is a heavenly coda of sunlight bursting through clouds, warm synths drifting across restrained pulses. 'Timing and Lighting' went through countless live iterations before the current version was tracked for this album, a tunneling exploration of rhythm with a dose of sardonic humor. 'Move In Blue (Homeward Mix)' is James Places' rework of a track from 2017's Voices Bloom, obsessively remixed and revisited, here littered with additional melodies and populated by newly sampled voices. Closing track 'Names' is perhaps the most outright beautiful James Place recording to date. A stripped back rework of a live version of Living On Superstition’s 'Another Mourning In America', the tune is based on a melodic line written after the studio recorded version. Interwoven with a sampled vocal, and rinsed of all of the original song, 'Names' is left behind a stark and compelling descendant. The digital release includes a remix of 'Move In Blue' by Persuasion aka Devon Hansen.
The title, Still Waves To A Whisper, stems from a conversation between Place and another artist on methods to ease anxieties and the benefits of a focused practice. The hope's for this music to continue that conversation on a larger scale.”
Hacked up blatz of improv guitar and pebble-dashed drum machines from poet/producer and Diagonal renegade Blood Music, including a Christoph De Babalon-esque jungle onslaught in ‘Ipomoea Violacea’
““Hit record and mixed tracks from 2017-2018. Turns out I made an album, by mistake. old school BM guitar-&-drum machine, a Linn-Drum & a Fred Moten sample, Serge drone, FM synth kicks & a YMO interview & a robot, ‘shut up and listen to him play’, 808 acid funk, 280bpm Gescom memories, a taiko ramen break rounded & a just intonation poem - abc, the whole alphabet: performance from within fugitive study. I like to enjoy myself.” – Simon Pomery, London, 28 December 2018.
Blood Music is Simon Pomery: London-based, Irish-born producer, musician and maker of the “infinity-poem”. The name Blood Music is one English translation of the Japanese word “Kodo”: “mind-before-thought”, “children of the drum”, “music heard in the womb”, or rather, “blood music”. He has two 12”s on Diagonal Records – “Blood Music EP” (2013), and “Chicks/Badgering” (2015) – digis on dingn\dents and self-released works.
“GPS Poetics” is influenced by Pomery’s research into poetics and ethics: Fred Moten’s writings on poetry and improvisation from “In the Break: The Aesthetics of the Black Radical Tradition”, Joan Retallack on Gertrude Stein, John Cage and aleatoric composition in “The Poethical Wager”, and Édouard Glissant’s “Poetics of Relation”. The notion of “the centre” is exploded in favour of fugitive research into the relational. The result here is a live mix of cross-genre blood musics, given to that most freely proliferating, streamable, downloadable, capitalist communication of consumer taste: the DJ mixtape. Pomery’s use of text and voice in Blood Music continues his investigation of text-sound compositions of the 60s and 70s. His “infinity poems”, which are algorithmically produced for print as well as for his a/v show “SPEED READING WITH BLOOD MUSIC”, provide the visual art and language for his relational poetics.”
In this gripping, unsettling Pauline Oliveros classic, the legendary composer pays tribute to a pair of very different yet pivotal 20th Century women - the radical feminist (and attempted murderer of Andy Warhol) Valerie Solanas, and troubled film icon Marilyn Monroe
“Shortly after it was published in 1968 the SCUM Manifesto by Valerie Solanas fell into my hands. Intrigued by the egalitarian feminist principles set forth in the Manifesto, I wanted to incorporate them in the structure of a new piece that I was composing. The women’s movement was surfacing and I felt the need to express my resonance with this energy. Marilyn Monroe had taken her own life. Valerie Solanas had attempted to take the life of Andy Warhol. Both women seemed to be desperate and caught in the traps of inequality: Monroe needed to be recognized for her talent as an actress. Solanas wished to be supported for her own creative work. Commissioned by the Music Department of Hope College, Holland Michigan, To Valerie Solanas and Marilyn Monroe in Recognition of Their Desperation had its premiere in 1970. Though everyone knew Marilyn Monroe hardly anyone recognized Valerie Solanas or took her Manifesto seriously. I brought the names of these two women together in the title of the piece to draw attention to their inequality and to dedicate the piece.” – Pauline Oliveros.”
'Vacuum Boogie' is the second Floating Points release on Eglo and by far the best thing from the producer yet, kicking off with the ecstatic soul of the title track, sucking dub house styles in a boogie disco vortex...
'Truly' contrasts with a gradually phasing groove, shifting between electronic minimalism and heavy smudged disco soul like few others out there, leaving 'Argonaut' to emerge from the dubjazz echo chamber with a Drexciyan melody to die for. The production levels are just exceptional, making for one of the most enjoyable twelves of the year so far,
Rob’s highly sought-after Afro-Funk masterpiece newly reissued by Mr. Bongo, nearly a decade in the Analog Africa edition set heads and feet on fire
'Funky Rob Way' was originally issued in an edition of 500 copies on the legendary Essiebons imprint in 1977 and copies trade for silly money these days. But it's so easy to hear why. This gear is firing hot, combining the amazing talents of ambitious front man Rob, a trained pianist, with the army band, Mag-2, lead by the talented Amponsah Rockson. Together they hatched a fier, deeeeeply funky sound blending a blazing horn section clearly nodding to the JBs, with spaced-out Moog and off course, a deadly rhythm section.
The title track is a proper Afro-funk scorcher, contrasting sharply with the mindblowing 'Forgive Us All', a downtempo, eight minute cosmic spectacular with incredible Moog drones and guitar licks u there with Funkadelic's 'Maggot Brain', only with a proper Ghanaian soul. Further in, there's the blazing horns and Moog of 'Boogie On'; the hard-hitting yet wickedly woozy cosmic funk of 'Just One More Time' and, oh my gosh, the squelchy bounce of 'More'! Don't think twice, this is an essential purchase for fans of innovative, futuristic Afro Funk of any kind!!!
’Scaffold Eyes’ is a slow moving and intimately evocative audioplay written and recorded by Berlin-based sound artist Armin Lorenz Gerold, with additional vocals by art/architecture historian Miriam Stoney and Irish filmmaker Doireann O’Malley
“Produced in November 2017 for KW Institute for Contemporary Art’s Compound series, Armin Lorenz Gerold’s ‘Scaffold Eyes’ is a 45 minute audioplay, first presented as a multi-channel installation and a live reading performance. It is narrated by Gerold alongside London-based art and architecture historian Miriam Stoney and Berlin-based artist and filmmaker Doireann O’Malley.
‘It is a Tuesday evening in late August. She wanders through various streets linked to a canal that divides the district in two halves. Her thoughts are diffuse and further interrupted by looking at her phone relentlessly.’
‘Scaffold Eyes’ traces the paths of four characters as they wander through the urban landscape of Berlin. We listen in to their meandering thoughts. The lines they walk are never straight, their narrated memories and observations oscillating between the diffuse and the precise. Berlin’s cityscape echoes their psychological space, its dimensions distorted. The city’s sounds blend into each other. Scaffold is everywhere. In juxtaposing the constant reshaping of this metropole with the transient lives of his characters, Gerold places us into a world seemingly in flux.
‘It is early September. I enter Kreuzberg 61’s town hall through the main entrance passing by a porters’ lodge A man is barely visible behind glass. Gently lit from the side by a small table lamp, half his shape disappears…’
The compositions seem algorithmic, yet mood-driven and fluid. Gerold combines spoken word with a collage of field recordings, ambient compositions and song sketches. For example, the faux-jazz of ‘Love Theme of Scaffold Eyes’ suggests a film noir theme while resonating with a characters’ depiction of construction sites by night. As we follow a character into an uninhabited highway construction site, we listen to his voice shifting gradually into vocoder, glancing a the autobahn superstructures around us, cars streaming by. “
Sci-fi-styled, synthy grime & drill mutations from Tom E Vercetti, Chemist and Lovedr0id a.k.a. Silk Road Assassins, with guest spots from Kuedo and WWWINGS (a.k.a. Ars Was Taken).
Since their debut LP ‘Reflections’, SRA have really refined their sound with razor sharp chops and exacting poignancy, making ‘State of Ruin’ their defitnsve calling card.
With a manacled grasp of cutting edge UK drill and grime rhythms, and a sublime feel for melancholy yet adrenal sensation, their 2nd significant group showing plays out like the soundtrack to a noir thriller set in mazy London bits and ends, with all the road level romance and violence, and ariel, multi-storey/storied nocturnal connotations that comes with the territory.
Eleh’s powerful side to a 2017 split LP with Christina Kubisch is now made available to download
As the enigmatic project enters its 20th year of glacial analog synthesis movements, ‘Ohmage/Resistor’ finds Eleh keenly shaping and diffracting viscous waves of sound in space, with particular attention paid to a sense of morphing depth perception arising from fluctuations in amplitude and decay.
Using a piano and Serge STS modular synthesizer, as ever, Eleh take their time to coax out and nurture each gesture in its own space, teasing his key strokes and envelopes in a masterful play of sustain and release as the piece transitions from gaseous, cosmic radiation, thru pulsing wormholes, and into time-flattening stasis, before resembling something like a Stephen O’Malley elegy to a dying amp.
Warp’s exhumed Arcola sublabel resurrect The Doubtful Guest, who released a couple of IDM/acid things 10 years ago
Libby Floyd is back with four tracks of spheric, beatless electronica in ‘Voyage to Blacklantis’, which presumably intends to invoke some sorta of Drexciya reference, and sounds like one of their classic intros slowed down and extended...
Floating ambient/modern classical/post-rock feels from Jonas Munk (Manual) and Jason Kolb (Auburn Lull)
“III: Chroma/Contour is the third album from Billow Observatory, the collaborative project of Danish producer Jonas Munk (Manual, Ulrich Schnauss collaborator and more) and Michigan native Jason Kolb (Auburn Lull). The album's nine tracks eschew the pulse and rhythm that defined the duo's previous effort (II: Plains/Patterns) in favor of sparse melodic possibilities and a more abstract palette of sounds. Chroma/Contour suggests looking both 20 years forward and twenty years back, while forgetting the present altogether.
Much of the album plays out as a study in minimalism: the texture and colour of each sound is being explored in miniscule detail, with enough space in the soundfield to allow each sonic constituent to breathe fully. There's a conceptual dimension to several tracks on the album, with
guitars, analog synths and voices being mangled by samplers, computer software and a broken dictaphone into pure abstraction. But simultaneously there's a melodic undercurrent, revealing a deeply emotional aspect of the music. Tracks such as Color In The Six, Iris and Soft Logic convey a melancholic sense of awe, a profoundly calming glimpse of the sublime.”
The indomitable Xiu Xiu is driven to ecstatic, noisy new heights by a battery of Haitian voodoo drummers and co-production by Deerhoof’s Greg Saunier in ‘Girl With Basket of Fruit’
Coming off like Muslimgauze and Cut Hands gone no wave in NYC, 1980, the vibe of Xiu Xiu’s 11th studio album references rituals, mythology and divergent belief systems to realise a bleeding raw, tense and agitated record that mirrors the mood of the times.
Co-produced by the band’s Angela Seo with Deerhoof’s Grege Saunier, and incorporating a big cast including Eugene Robinson (Oxbow) and Haitian percussionists Emmanuel Obi and Ayo Okafor, alongside regulars such as Jamie Stewart doing his tortured avant-cabaret thing and Devin Hoff on all manner of basses, the result is arguably the fiercest and most psychoactive episode in Xiu Xiu’s endlessly amorphous oeuvre, but not without its calmer moments of poignancy.
Following their production on the best track from Charli XCX’s ‘Pop 2’ (obvs Track 10), Lil Data morphs fake tribal drums and a chopped up diva into a sort of pelting late ‘90s Eurodonk that careens out of control by the track’s end.
Living artwork Cosey Fanni Tutti (TG/Chris & Cosey/X-TG) actions a definitive self-portrait in sound with ‘Tutti’ - a stark, throbbing mesh of darkroom impulses and hallucinogenic soundscapes arriving a generation on from her cult solo debut, ‘Time To Tell’ 
Stemming from Cosey’s soundtrack contribution to the COUM Transmissions retrospective conceived for Hull’s UK City of Culture 2017 opening, and produced during the same period she wrote her none-more-fascinating autobiography ‘Art Sex Music’, the eight soundscapes of ‘Tutti’ comprise of manipulated archival material that represents her ongoing artistic process of self-analysis, acknowledging her past and the way it informs her present. In her words; ; “It’s the only album I’ve made that is an all-encompassing statement expressing the totality of my being. A sense of the past in relation to the presents and everything in between.”
Rather than explicitly referencing any one period of her oeuvre, which stretches back to the early ‘70s and covers everything from performance art to video works and numerous stylistic shifts in contemporary music, Cosey limns a more elusive silhouette of her stunning body of work in ’Tutti’, rendering an amorphous mass that conveys the absorbingly sensual nature and breadth of her scope. It’s strong testament to her holistic approach, or even her influence over successive generations, that the music on ‘Tutti’ sounds like it could have been made at any point between her debut album and right now.
Kicking off with the mechanical jazz fonk of ‘Tutti’, with her sky-high signature cornet scudding over primeval techno rhythms, the set twists from writhing electrosex in ‘Drone’ and the mantric hypnosis of ‘Sophic Ripple’, to investigate accreted layers of ghostly psychic plasma in the psychoactive sound design of ‘Split’, before finding her traumas voice in the sexy AF synth-pop abstraction ‘Heliy’, while the depths of ‘Orenda’ could be said to hearken as much to the blue/black churn of the North Sea next to her native Hull as much as the noise ideologies of TG and a shared sense of solidarity with marginalised people (the title is an Iroquois word for a spiritual power inherent in people and their environment).
Following Aphex Twin’s DJ play of ‘Nitya’ from Jigga’s debut EP, the Japanese producer returns to Bedouin a much altered, sublime figure with the melancholy elegance of ‘iliiiilii’
Where Jigga’s debut folded drill and far-eastern melodies with a sensitive cyberpunk aesthetic, their follow-up leaves the beats and ruggedness behind to explore calligraphic, weightless expressions of a modern ambient soul.
Between the blooming Koto-like strings and frays synth voices of ‘Hyikyoumu’, the curdled twang and shoegazing harmonics of ‘Imetumu’, the deep bluesy grip of ‘Huemu’, and the exquisite melodic cadence of ‘Misyomu’ we’re reminded of everyone from Elysia Crampton, TCF and Arca to The The, before the 10 minute finale of ‘Mu’ feels to enforce the sense of catharsis with more bittersweet effect, rising to a voluminous crescendo worthy of a Fennesz and Prurient hook-up.
Home Age is the first proper Eleh full length since 2012's Homage To The Pointed Waveforms.
These new pieces seek to expose the inherent musicality of pure electrical currents via high resolution Serge STS synthesizers. Like early Eleh work, Home Age is inward looking, domestic and deliberate but also slowly emotional and revealing as if peering blurry eyed through a window. Melody, harmony and counterpoint are suggested but not revealed.
Alessandro Cortini, Kangding Ray, Surachai and Telefon Tel Aviv rework the industrial crunch and roll of Belief Defect’s debut album for the rejigged Raster label
Kangding Ray spikes ‘Unnatural Instinct’ to nervier, pendulous, brukken effect; Alesandro Cortini extracts a blackened ambient noise soul from ‘Disembarking Horizons’; L.A.’ Surachai pulverises ‘No Hope No Fear’ with ruthless levels of distortion and scorched BM intensity; and Telefon Tel Aviv’s Joshua Eustis lend a fine contrast with the plasmic polymetrics of his take on ‘Deliverance’ recommended to fans of his work with Turk Dietrich in Second Woman.
Dva Damas’ Joe Cocherell a.k.a. Bone Head tests mutant dance music for Warp’s Arcola sublabel. Previously vinyl only, now available to download
Gwan dolo for first time since his pair of 12”s for Frozen Border c. 2011-12, Cocherell comes with a more supple, mutant style than his early techno rollers, also distinctive from his goth-toend EBM with Dva Damas.
‘Busy Body’ works out a super minimal sort of dancehall tension; ‘Virtua’ and ’Soft Power’ nods to the sparing/sparring percussive styles of Rian Treanor; and ‘Peace Keeper’ cuts as more colourful figure with bright stabs and taut, whirring syncopations comparable with Slikback grooves.
Jamal Moss joins the rebooted Arcola for his banging, trippy maiden voyage under a new alias; Our Souls Are In The Hands of the Translator..
On sɪŋkrɪtɪzəm, the keeper of the Chi-town flame dials in an astonishingly colourful and psychedelic two parts featuring some of the craftiest drum programming and psychoactive 3D rendering in his entire catalogue, landing somewhere between his Strange Strings classic and the guttural drum functions of his Gherkin Life jags.
Up top, he renders the glorious chromatic arps and wall-bouncing rhythms of Impoverished Spirits, delivering some of his punchiest, pendulous percussion framed by an unfathomably deep and dynamic lightshow of shooting star melodies meshed in celestial harmony. This is Jamal at his loosest, most playful, and effective.
Flipside is given to Bilal for a slower, more sensitive and involving streak of Jamal Moss genius. Here the groove is wildly swung, almost touching on Freestyle electro levels of rugged choppiness, but without the edits, while Jamal riffs to the heavens on his syn-flute and the synths grow lush and feverish wherever the sunlight touches.
The tunes, the mastering and vinyl cut add up to a proper vibe. This one will travel!
Willie Burns and L.I.E.S' Ron Morelli meld minds as Strange Birds in the ruinous ‘Bird Shit’ jam session for Willie’s Verge Of Tears label
The result of a mucky weekend in Paris at the end of 2015, ‘Bird Shit’ delivers some of the deadliest material we’ve heard from either of ‘em. A-side gives strong highlights in the unyielding techno tension of ‘Birdshit 3’ and the pulverizing rhythmic noise of ‘Birdshit 1’, while ‘Birdshit 3’ is an unmissable EBM techno girder.
TML comes off like the Minneapolis answer to Kowton on his 3rd outing with Hotflush - including a pumping Alden Tyrell remix
‘Tensor’ stajkes out ground between sizzling Chicago jack, UK grime and acid with bare-bones production values, while ‘UND0’ pushes the distortion to the biting point with alkaline effect, and ‘Export (Dub)’ trades in a skeletal form of acid grime dub.
For a more direct stiffener, check out the whirring acid techno mechanics of Alden Tyrell’s take on ‘Cell ID’.
The hypnotic spectral apparitions of Eleh’s 2018 split with Caterina Barbieri are now available to download via Important
‘Wear Patterns’ is another haunting example of the infinite variation which Eleh generate from heir classic analog synthesiser models. They don’t disclose what’s used on this piece, and we’re not feeling bold enough to attempt a guess, but the results are detectably more complex, layered than one might expect, as the seemingly still, minimalist mass feels to squirm and reveal myriad iridiscent shimmers upon closer inspection, and ultimately with a palms up, meditative flow of energies that leaves us up and focussed rather than spaced out.
Black Lodge leaves his mark on Arcola with a vintage batch originally intended for release on Mo Wax (hence the titular cat#), which sadly folded before they got a chance to release them.
Convulsing into action for the 2nd time in as many weeks following the Disciples’ issue of his ‘Bitter Blood’ LP, Dan Dwayre a.k.a. Black Lodge makes up for nearly a decade of public silence since his trio of tapes with Will Bankhead’s TTT, which itself was preceded by nearly a decade of self-imposed silence following his memorably daft ‘Horse With No Name’ 12” for Mo Wax, which this reviewer blindly picked out of the Vinyl Ex buckets in 2001 and used to regularly plague parties with its hilarious ‘scratch’ samples of Borstal boys, and such.
‘MWR157’ was produced during that same cusp-o-millennium period but sadly never made it any further than the folds of Black Lodge’s heavy red velvet curtains, ’til now. And that was a shame, as with hindsight we can hear that Dan’s tracks may well be hailed as a sort of weirdo cult classic, especially in the madder touches such as ‘Monte’, which clearly recalls Push Button Objects or Gescom beats, and likewise the jiggy bumps of ‘Mo Wax 5’ on a natty Timbaland flex, and the skronky disco budges of ‘Hotline’ and ‘Microphone Demo01’.
Italian duo Primitive Art conjure vibes recalling RPG-soundtracks and queasy dreams in their rare outing on Warp’s exhumed sublabel, Arcola.
Previously vinyl only, ‘Crab Suite’ is now available to download
Crooked electronica, twisting and flipping presets and samples into warped reflections and queasy arrangements, sometimes obliquely abstract, at other with a cinematic romance betraying Belp’s influence from classical music and film scores.
Ruff grime/garage/techno fusions from Walton on Pinch’s Tectonic
Running after his ‘Black Lotus’ album, the ‘Inside’ EP shells the rude force of ‘Bullet #2’ next to the warp bass pressure of the title track and the chopped up nastiness of ‘More Cowbell’ and ‘Gunshot Clap’.
Tripping chuggers from the Optimo camp, by one half of Boot & Tax and his pal
“Tamburi Neri. Sweet stories cloudy landscapes. A project based on stories created by the lucid madness of Andrea Barbieri and the dark and dreamy musical composition of Claudio Brioschi. Their music conveys a long vortex of exciting poetry.”