Mick Harris, Parrish Smith and Overlook run ruffshod over a highlight from Ron Morelli’s ‘Disappearer’ album for Hospital Productions
Brummie squadron leader Mick Harris is properly up for a brawl, knuckles taped up and dusted in glass on his pulverizing A-side remix, but Parrish Smith (Volition Imminent) absolutely bosses the session with his transition from tense, half-stepping drums and panic stations synths to full-on 150bpm industrial onslaught, and D&B producer Overlook (Lucid Dreams) recalls the exquisite bleakness of Vereker’s Restraint alias in his cut of dank, droning techno rolige.
Adriana Lopez and Klara Lewis takes the reins on 2nd of five remix 12”s for vintage gear by Pär Grindvik, boss of Stockholm Ltd and half of the Aasthma duo with Peder Mannerfelt.
Barcelona’s Lopez reworks ‘Front Row’ from 2017’s ‘The Game’ 12” with a brooding, hulking, monotone techno churn, leaving Klara Lewis to render ‘London Marble’ from 2017’s ‘Aged’ EP as a vast cloud of gaseous ambient harmonics that crystallise into a beautiful frost of icy ambient noise.
Solid Blake and Art Alfie exert rude and moody remixes on Pär Grindvik’s catalogue in the 4th of five remix 12” for the boss of Stockholm Ltd and half of the Aasthma duo with Peder Mannerfelt
CPH resident Solid Blake resets ‘Silent below deck’ as a corkscrewing electro mutation pinned into place with jabbing drums and dry claps, contrasting with the arid, grumbling bass and dry-mouthed hi-hats of Art Alfie rolling techno spin of ‘The Marlton’.
Dutch sound artist Machinefabriek supplies a fittingly chilly score for video shot in Antarctica by Esther Kokmeijer, following his first suite with a sound that’s truer to the images of icebergs and endless tundra.
“The friendship and collaboration between Rutger Zuydervelt (Machinefabriek) and Alessandro Tedeschi (label founder of Glacial Movements, has been going on for several years now and it is constantly evolving. The Dutch artist, in addition to carrying out the graphic designs of all Glacial Movements' releases, is also part of the label’s catalog with the album "Stillness Soundtracks" released in April 2014. Almost 6 years from its publication, here is the new musical tale of the fantastic journey in Antarctica by Esther Kokmeijer.
When Esther Kokmeijer asked Rutger Zuydervelt (aka Machinefabriek) to score the second installment of her ‘Stillness’ video series, he didn’t have to think twice. After all, when working on its first volume, the duo found out soon enough that the images of floating icebergs and desolate sea scapes were a perfect fit with Rutger’s glacial sounds (as heard on ‘Stillness Soundtracks’). For that first set, the score was quite lively and layered, as if the music was adding a narrative to the static imagery, suggesting that things were unfolding outside of the screen. For the second ‘Stillness’ installment, the focus is more on what can be seen within the frame – an attempt to capture the solemnness of the images – to find beauty, but also sadness in the mesmerizing quality of Esther’s films. This makes ‘Stillness Soundtracks II’ a more sombre and subdued album and one that’s a fitting soundtrack to these alarming times with climate change being a more serious threat than ever.
Esther Kokmeijer: “Stillness” depicts tranquil, gliding images of icescapes from the North and South Pole. I filmed these landscapes during my biannual visits to Antarctica as an expedition photographer. The meditative images invite reflection on the unparalleled beauty of this glacial ecology, which appears both vulnerable and resilient.”
Party-ready mixtape crammed with reggaeton edits of ‘90s dance-pop, grime and modern rap cuts for Low Jack’s Editions Gravats. Edition of 100, don't snooze.
Catching the label at its most frivolous and practically reeking of Kalimotxo, King Doudou’s ‘Yin-Yang Street Mix’ follows from his ‘Novinha/Tremendo Bumbum’ 12” last year with a highly compatible selection primed for sozzled, dutty perreos.
Expect to find licks from the likes of Eiffel 65, Faithless, Culture Beat, 666 and Alice Deejay woven with kinky, hip-ticking dembow rhythms and rap from Lil Pump, Bad Gyal, La Zowi and stacks of classic rave stabs in a restless flow that won’t let the party down.
The A-side is titled ‘Angels’ and gets the juices going at a slightly slower slant with all your favourites/most hated ‘90s numbers in there somewhere, before the B-side’s ‘Demonico’ selection steps the pace and the rowdiness up to a peak, including that reggaeton version of ‘Insomnia’ you were always waiting for.
Washed out ambient electronics from Luke J Murray and Henry Rodrick’s Iceman Junglist Kru, affiliates of London’s Disciples label
‘Mashed on Pills’ is their 2nd tape in this guise. Its six track of gauzy, filtered fluff follows a year on from the ‘We’ll Only Leave If You Throw Glass’ tape, self-released on their Too Fucked To Dance label in 2019, and reprises a sound full of wistful arps swaddled in ferric distortion on the A-side, while the B-side revolves around milky dub chords and murky bass pulsations underlaid with munted vox. It recalls music by Black Zone Myth Chant and DeepChord, and sounds a bit like a someone making sounds based on a 2nd hand description of that time their mate’s mate had a mythical brown speckled gary and felt a bit funny.
“Formed from a bond that stretches across time and space, from the rain-soaked Lancastrian hills of Manchester over towards the icy shores of Stockholm, via North down South London and a shared admiration for the hidden reverse of Nurse With Wound and Coil, the concrete surrealism of dead air time grime from the turn of the Millennium and an unhealthy drop of teeth-chattering ecstasy. The Iceman Junglist Kru's debut recording proper distills the influence of all of these sectors of sound, each as important as the other. If you see a cop, throw this tape out of the car window…”
Murky, electro-acoustic and kosmiche explorations by the Zachary James Watkins (Black Spirituals) and Ross Peacock (Mwahaha, Heaven’s Club), inspired by Cluster/Eno/Scientist
““Two serpent synths… Liquid sky… Two tonal tails traveling together and ripping apart… Fragments of notes creating a sky full of treasures…Galloping rhythms in drenched chords and shimmering sine waves…”
The new duo of electro-acoustic disciple, Zachary James Watkins and analog spacesynth master, Ross Peacock conjures a new possibility of tone, rhythm and light. Influenced by the likes of Dub, Krautrock and experimental pioneers Cluster, Brian Eno and Scientist, their live improvised blend of psychedelic electronica embraces the fragility of analog and digital hardware systems. Watkins/Peacock engage in vibrant patterns over time with an investment in exploration and exchanges.
Watkins has recently returned from Carnegie Hall, where Kronos Quartet performed his original composition “Peace Be Till”. In 2017, he composed and performed an hour long score for the 35mm film “Black Field”, collaborating with acclaimed filmmaker, Paul Clipson. His duo, Black Spirituals, has released records on SIGE and The Tapeworm and toured Europe extensively including a six week stint with Earth. They have since received glowing reviews from the likes of The New York Times and The Wire.
Ross Peacock with his band, Mwahaha, have performed extensively in the U.S. performing a live Boiler Room set following the release of their first full length on Plug Research. They were invited by Warp Records to perform at their SXSW showcase where NPR’s “All Songs Considered” named them one of their Favorite Discoveries of SXSW. Mwahaha was later invited to the UK to perform alongside Sigur Ros at The Eden Project after appearing in London with Damo Suzuki and Andrew Weatherall. He has been featured in Vice, Mojo, Spin, NME and has collaborated with Merrill Garbus of Tune-Yards and Jel/Odd Nosdam of Anticon.
The Watkins/Peacock duo have since performed a live film score at the third annual Haxan Film Festival, opened for the Fred Frith Trio and in May 2018 appeared at MUTEK San Francisco playing alongside Aux 88, Errorsmith, and Francesco Tristano/Derrick May. The duo are in the wake of the first E.P. of the thematic series, Acid Escape.”
Debut album from a mysterious new operator on Hospital Productions, a “fallen disciple’ who grew up in a religious cult and who now makes masterfully crafted Techno and EBM modelled in the image of classic Regis, Silent Servant and Ancient Methods productions and which features recordings of sermons by the pastor he had to listen to during his religious upbringing.
‘Suburban Scum’ is Nathaniel Young aka Guilt Attendant's devilishly detailed debut of girder-strength techno for Hospital Productions, forged in the image of late ‘90s hard techno and reverberating strongly with prevailing trends. It’s inspired and informed by the artist’s deeply held urge to undo the dogma instilled by his religious Christian upbringing. and, as such, it expresses a sense of free will within the context of Satan’s fall from grace, fully grasping techno’s repetitive excess as a potential path to hedonism, freedom and other ungodly matters.
Recorded between 2016-2019, the 8 tracks of ’Suburban Scum’ find Guilt Attendant in cold control of his agency. While they may possibly make crowds consider their own relationship to god, especially in his use of sampled sermons by his former preacher that crop up throughout, and most strikingly on the closing ’Severe Mercy’, the majority are more likely to make dancers slam the walls and trample a hole in the ‘floor, especially with the galloping horsepower traction of ‘Broken (Free)’ and his scudding 140bpm missile ‘Cursed Spawn of White Flight’, while the title track deals in purely clenched EBM and the dread-filled palpitations of ‘Imminent Unraveling’ features his vocals low in the mix and wrapped around the track’s rugged spine.
While there’s a certain irony in eschewing one dogma to embrace another, Guilt Attendant utilises the inherently principled form of hard techno as a steely framework in which to explore his own spirit. In the process he opens a derelict warehouse-like playground to reflect on key themes of moral independence, social segregation, free will, blissful despair and decisive autonomy - that patently apply to popular conceptions of the dancefloor as “church” and techno as ritual.
Huerco S’ West Mineral label follow Pendant’s sublime 'Make Me Know You Sweet' album with uon’s wholly absorbing study in brownian motion and isolation tank ambience; a hypnotically lush exploration of underwater romance. If you're into the impeccable run of Vainqueur releases on Chain Reaction, this one's for you.
It’s the 2nd release from the enigmatic project, whose debut 12”s in 2017 was among the year’s standout ambient and dub-related releases. On this new one uon poetically describes three different behaviours of water and its amorphous states through a gently elemental push and pull of forces best considered in the vein of Basic Channel, Wolfgang Voigt’s Gas or the shimmering convections of Ross 154.
Beautifully elusive but crucially watermarked with a sense of originality in personalized style, Solaris opens the set with a 17 minute cut - a seemingly infinite journey through swells of diffracted chords and silty filters, simultaneously connoting sensations of opiated amniotic safety and oceanic infinity.
Where the A-side feels like floating in a lush mass, the bass-heavy articulation of his B-side’s J may well urge listeners onto the ‘floor with the same, inexorable traction of classic Vainqueur records, and in a way smartly reflects uon’s mutable DJ style, before the aqueous qualities of his final track Bus soothes to a deeper blue state of loved-up introspection which, like Solaris, could have have easily taken up a side to itself.
In advance of Metal Preyers' mad, hypnotic debut LP, the Afro-Anglo-American squad prep the scene with ‘The Preying Well’, an immersive portal into their ruffneck soundsystem psychedelia for Uganda’s Nyege Nyege Tapes.
Revolving around core players Jesse Hackett and Mariano Chavez in the mix with input from their extended Ugandan family at Nyege Nyege Tapes, plus vital touches by London rogue Lord Tusk, Metal Preyers’ is a unique project that yields a queasily impressionistic jag deep into the nightlife of Uganda’s sprawling capital city, Kampala.
This mixtape acts a teasing prelude for the forthcoming full album of sozzled thrills, spills and bellyaches, drawing a curtain of nightfall over Kampala with shadowy strains of doomy free jazz and cranky ambient electronics that give way to swarming metallic tones, oozing jungle sludge and gnashing rhythms over the course of 46 impending minutes.
In key with the full album’s A/V stylings, which include a homemade horror video, the mix of music in ‘The Preying Well’ resembles a soundtrack in itself, flowing with a grittily fluid quality from ferrous atmospheres and Carpenter-esque tension into proper film noir jazz tones and ritualistic drone on the first side, then baying for the night with bleeding sax and rambunctious drums in the 2nd side, before calving off into keening, dissonant psychedelia that’s bound to leave listeners salivating for the album.
The most intriguing of The Tapeworm’s early 2020 batch is a game of lower-case rustle and smudge coaxed out from ‘Revox, Paper, Scissors’ (and pencil) by tape maverick Jérôme Noetinger and visual artist Liz Rácz
“Edited from recordings made during performances in Melbourne, February 2017 and Poitiers, September 2017. Inscribing of sound and drawing. The act of inscribing is the raw material. The inscription is transformed on a loop of magnetic tape. Illustration: Liz Rácz.
Using a singular repetitive gesture, Liz Rácz draws on a 10 metre-long roll of paper that she gradually unfurls, revealing a mass of regular strokes. Jérôme Noetinger records this gesture on magnetic tape, capturing, repeating, and transforming it. An auscultation of detail in a magnetic tape loop continuum.
Jérôme Noetinger is a composer, improviser and sound artist who works with electroacoustic devices such as the Revox B77 reel-to-reel tape recorder and magnetic tape, analogue synthesisers, mixing desks, speakers, microphones, various electronic household/everyday objects and home-made electronica. He performs both solo and in ensembles (Cellule d’Intervention Metamkine, Le Un, Hrundi Bakshi, Les Sirènes, Proton…), and collaborates often (Sophie Agnel, Lionel Marchetti, Aude Romary, Angelica Castello, Antoine Chessex, Anthony Pateras, Anne-Laure Pigache…). From 1987 to 2018, he was the director of Metamkine, a non-profit organisation dedicated to the distribution of improvised and electroacoustic music. Between 1987 and 2014 Jérôme was a member of the editorial committee of the quarterly journal of contemporary sound, poetry and performance, Revue & Corrigée. For ten years from 1989, he was a member and programming co-ordinator of exhibitions, gigs, and experimental cinema at le 102 rue d'Alembert, Grenoble.
Originally from Melbourne, Australia, now based in the Grenoble region in France since 2009, Liz Rácz is an artist working across different media: installation, drawing, printmaking, painting, writing, comics, and performance. She interrogates perception, repetition, mise en abyme, gesture and translation, feedback and language modes through such works as “La Persistence Reptilienne” (2017) which is based on principles of pre-cinema optical toys, but animated by stroboscopic light; or project-in-progress “Drawchestra” (2019), a participative and auditive drawing event using home-made electronics and contact mics; and, in collaboration with Richard B., “Furcsañata” (2018), a noise performance smashable sculpture, filled with adult-themed goodies. She is the vocalist in the punk group Plaine Crasse since 2018 and is also in the collective that organises gigs, Archipel Urbain, at le 102, Grenoble.”
Stone cold classic ‘90s Detroit techno from UR agent Suburban Knight, reissued for first time in a decade
Widely regarded a jewel in the crown of UR’s early ‘90s run, the darkside techno template of ‘Nocturbulous Behaviour’ has cast a long shadow of influence over techno for nearly 30 years. The A-side’s Infra Red Spectrum’ is a masterclass in spine-freezing, super bass-heavy techno that possibly betrays a return influence from Belgian techno, which itself took large inspiration from Suburban Knight’s early Detroit classic ‘The Art of Stalking’ (1990). The all-too-short dread techno bomb ‘Magnetic Timetable’ follows on the A-side, backed with another all-time UR M.V.P. in ‘Nocurbulous’, with its bulldozer bass drop and totally haunting, sleepwalker synth lead brought to life in-the-mix by the Ultimate Survivor (a.k.a. Mad Mike) “Somewhere in Detroit”.
Tortoise mainman Jeff Parker throws down the lissom, balmy jazz-fusion of ‘Max Brown’, the final track of his ‘Suite For Max Brown’ album as a tease for the promising full LP
“I’m always looking for ways to be surprised,” says composer and multi-instrumentalist Jeff Parker as he explains the process, and the thinking, behind his new album, Suite for Max Brown, released via a new partnership between the Chicago–based label International Anthem and Nonesuch Records. “If I sit down at the piano or with my guitar, with staff paper and a pencil, I’m eventually going to fall into writing patterns, into things I already know. So, when I make music, that’s what I’m trying to get away from—the things that I know.”
Finders Keepers don their flasher macs and visit the soundtrack to French skin flick 'Jeune Filles Impudiques' aka Schoolgirl Hitchhikers.
The film itself is apparently quite so-so, but these tracks depict a vibrant No-No generation in the wake of the 1968 Paris uprising. For the break hunters there's a pair of real killer drum workouts, especially the feverish 'Gilda & Gunshots', but the sleazy, second-class jazz miniatures and library theme of the title track will whet the appetite of collectors everywhere.
This is the first taste of a new series from FK dedicated to the work of the film's director Jean Rollin, documenting some of his finest moments on vinyl. Tip! (For adults only)...
This second Galaxie 500 LP (from 1989) tends to be regarded as the band's finest, and in hindsight it sure sounds like a formidable piece of work.
Using a similarly slowed down, thinned out combination of guitar strum and plodding drums the band somehow continue to forge a unique sound that's helped terraform the subsequent indie rock landscape. Bands like Low owe a great deal to this trio's proto-slow core concoctions, and their songwriting never sounded better than on this LP, with great songs like 'Blue Thunder', 'Strange' and 'Tell Me' all helping cement the group's cosmically charged sound.
Further to the originals, towards the end of the album the band's take on a couple of covers, including Joy Division's 'Ceremony', The Red Krayola's 'Victory Garden' and best of the bunch, the George Harrison song 'Isn't It A Pity', which sounds great in this context, rendered in all its weary simplicity.
This 1990 Galaxie 500 album draws its title from the classic Ornette Coleman LP of the same name and transpired to be the group's final studio outing.
There seems to be a slight expansion of the Galaxie 500 sound on this outing, expanding upon the dream-pop building blocks of prior outings with a heavier drum sound and more textural guitars. Songs like 'Hearing Voices' and 'Spook' soar magnificently, while elsewhere, the woodwind solos of 'Way Up High' and miniature fanfares in 'King Of Spain Part 2' take the group's aesthetic into fresh directions - there's really not a single moment in Galaxie 500's discography that's not imbued with some measure of magic.
The closing cover of the Velvet Underground's 'Here She Comes Now' makes for a fitting full-stop in the band's lifespan as a recording entity, effectively bringing their sound full-circle.
The label behind Angel Bat Dawit’s amazing debut present a glorious side from persistent jazz innovator Jeff Parker (Tortoise), melding deeply soulful charm with naturally explorative leanings operating at similarly loose but focussed levels of intuition and dextrous freedom across his swirling ‘Suite For Max Brown’, but with plusher recording and production values.
Preceded by a 7” that signalled this LP would be special, ‘Suite for Max Brown’ lives up to its promise with a canny mix of supple, live chops and Parker’s own sampling/editing tekkers that makes the LP feel at once fresh and vintage. Manning electric guitar, plus all sorts of percussion (drums, glockenspiel, pandeiro), and electronics (sampler, Korg MS20, Roland JP-08, midi), as well as Mibira and vocals, Jeff is flanked by a hand-picked band of Interantional Anthem regulars on strings, brass, drums and vox for a sophisticated and deeply cool iteration of 2020 jazz music.
The smooth fusion of ‘Max Brown’ off the aforementioned 7” single now closes the LP, but before you get there, the album will charm your socks off in 10 ways. On the A-side he puckers up a selection of succinct bewts, stroking MS20 subs under loping drums, guitar vamps and Ruby Parker’s serene, lilting vox on ‘Build a Nest’, and going all J Dilla with the sample/edit cut-up of Otis Redding on ‘C’mon Now’, before lurching into devilish jazz-funk breaks in ‘Fusion Swirl’, then melting the vibe with a gorgeous take on Coltrane’s ‘After The Rain’, alongside dreamy electronic vignette ‘Metamorphoses’. On the B-side however it sounds like they returned from lunch (and perhaps a spicy zoot) with a much more laid-back, woozy appeal explored thru Parker’s signature, quietly joyful electric guitar and spongiform MS20 bass on ‘3 For L’, while ‘Go Away’ simmers on the good foot for classy ‘floors with Makaya McCraven’s drums synched to Parker’s vox, sampler and chiming, almost highlife-esque guitar.
As with everything we’ve heard on IARC over the past few months (admittedly since being wowed by that amazing Angel Bat Dawid debut), Jeff Parker’s contributions fall squarely within the label’s focused yet broad appeal and properly rooted styles, offering the sort of Jazz slab that will seduce fence-sitters and light up harder-to-please beret wearers.
Reissue of Jah B’s previously unreleased blinder ‘Vampire’ backed with Tony Jackson’s high grade Roots Reggae ace ‘Mother I Love You’, newly reissued on Wackies...
Produced in fine Wackies style, Tony Jackson’s sought-after declaration ‘Mother I Love You’ is placed on the front along with the heat-hazy gauze of the ‘Mother’s Dub’ on Itopia’s original riddim.
B-side is haunted by ‘Vampire’ from Jah B and Wackies Rhythm Force, which has been beautifully transferred from tape (or original copy?) replete with spooky artefacts on the vocal mix, before really coming out of the dub’s nooks and crannies.
Killer 12" from Mark Ernestus Ndagga Rhythm Force.
Featuring all members of Jeri-Jeri plus the Basic Channell/Rhythm & Sound boss under a new moniker, 'Yermande' yields some of their strongest material to date, making the connections between Senegalese Mbalax, Jamaican dub and Berlin minimalism ever more inseparable. Comes in a stripped-down 'Kick and Bass Mix' featuring Mbene Diatta Seck dubbed to sound uncannily like Tikiman in parts, and backed with the achingly dextrous instrumental. Better yet, the 'Prophet 5 Mix' introduces the legendary Sequential Circuits model to the blend with hypnotically technoid effect.
Killer joyride of noisy, white-knuckle rhythms and biting-point sound design by Milan’s Advanced Audio Research for the increasingly ace Haunter Records
In hot pursuit of the styles found in his 2018 debut, the ‘First Grade’ LP - which recently turned up in Jon K’s killer TTT mix - the ‘Top Secret’ LP doubles down on that sound with nearly twice as much material and more belligerent confidence that places him in close orbit with fellow Italian demon, Shapednoise while also recalling the breakcore blatz of Somatic Responses and Venetian Snares.
No punches are pulled across the album’s 12 gory cuts, which often run at a frenetic 160bpm and all leave no nanosecond shy of seething action, fulminating standout pieces in the club mastication of ‘Gandalf’, the supremely cranky grind of ‘Gizmo (Tribute to Kazuhiko “Smokey” Nagata)’, his roiling R&B noise fusion, and the hardcore razz of ‘Trans-Mongolian Railway’.
Shanghai’s SVBKVLT returns with a second vinyl outing, this time in collaboration with the WV Sorcerer label, teaming up to present an alternate edition of Zaliva D’s immersive 'Sky Singing' release, newly expanded with 5 previously unreleased songs on the bonus CD.
Bridging ancient spirit voices and futurist imagination via 21st Century Shanghai, ‘Sky Singing’ spells out a definitive Zaliva D sound woven from slow, crimped electro swag, slippery electro synths and the voices of Li Chao, which range from demonically possessed techno folk to alien chorales. In key with the rest of the SVBKVLT roster or indeed the far flung styles of WV Sorcerer, the results feel at once familiar yet deeply uncommon in the context of western music, and serve a strong showcase of the riveting electronic music expressions coming from China right now.
The original 9 songs of ‘Sky Singing’ appear here on the vinyl, unfolding a gripping narrative between the pained, microtonal ululations and oscillations of ‘Extinction’, the sub-loaded and serpentine electro of ‘Down Samsara’, their title track’s halfstep hunch, and the techgnostic dramaturgy of ‘Prophecy’.
On the bonus CD they hustle five exclusives; locking into a swanging step nagged with noisy ‘tronics in ‘Tailgating’, along with the munted zombie dance of ‘Whole Terror’, an apocalyptic mini drama in ‘Hair River’, and a haunting form of hyper contemporary techno-folk in ‘End of The Sky’.
Very limited copies. Do not sleep.
Dutch electro hardass Ekman chases up his trio of 12”s for Bedouin Records with a full length LP of sleazy gloom and restlessly roving, swung drum machines
Packing the sort of satisfyingly dirty electro and acidic swivel that requires a shower after doing it, ‘A Pastime for Semi God’ is Ekman’s impressively stylish 3rd LP, most convincingly so in the likes of his jaw-trembling acid-electro workout ‘To See You This Way’, the 11 minute psych drones of ‘Metamemory’, and pure devilish club zingers such as the shark-eyed ‘Margin Of Error’, and the prickling, dissonant sensuality of ‘If Than Else.’
Small-sound ambient specialists Craig Tattersall and Benoît Pioulard whisper sweet nothings in a language of rustic rustles and rolling drone topology, making lovely use of their favoured tape recording techniques at the behest of Dauw’s collaboration series. Beautiful music, highly recommended to all lovers of Talk Talk, Cotton Goods, Stars Of The Lid, Rafael Anton Irisarri.
Both a regular presence on Dauw since the label’s early days, local hero Craig Tattersall aka one time member of Hood, Remote Viewer as well as The Humble Bee/The Boats and Brooklyn-based Benoît Pioulard now cross paths for the first time on record with a to-and-fro of gently distressed electronics weft with frayed melodies in a heart-ripened style.
As a fan of Dauw’s collaborative series, The Humble Bee’s Craig Tattersall acknowledges that “the beauty of collaborating is that we learn from having to give space to another creative force, working alone we fall back on what we know and what we have already done” and as such brings an open-minded, fraternal, open hearted sensibility to the seven pieces of ‘I Suppose I’m Your Future’.
Finding a mutually melancholy soul in Pioulard, the pairing mesh filigree licks of instrumentation with a quiet air of wonder and nostalgic entropy that perfuses the suite from the lilting strings of ‘Honesty’ thru the time-stopping, vaporous swell of ‘Risom’, and into ghostly choral sways recalling The Caretaker and Tape Loop Orchestra in ‘Off Camera’, before recalling the hypnagogic appeal of Akira Rabelais’ in the wilting strings of ‘Grey Confetti’, and approximating the bittersweet shoegaze peal of Jefre Cantu-Ledesma in ‘Per’ and wrapping up with the woolly loveliness of ‘Folly’. Just so lovely.
‘América Invertida’ is a fascinating survey of Uruguay’s lesser-covered ‘80s endeavours in new wave pop, jazz-fusion, ambient folk and electronics, compiled by Spanish DJ and collector Javi Bayo
So, hands up who knows about music from South America’s 2nd smallest nation? Aye, just like us, Uruguay’s music scene is a bit of mystery to all but an ardent set of diggers who’ve been mining its fine seams of cult records, often produced by the same handful of artists out of the capital city, Montevideo, and pressed in tiny runs at the time. For anyone interested, ‘América Invertida’ rectifies the issue with 11 charmingly sweet examples that patently echo the styles of Uruguay’s bigger neighbours, Brazil and Argentina, but with their own sense of breezy flair that’s neatly distilled in this compilation.
To play favourites, we’re instantly struck by the shimmering FM synth blush and suave bossa-fusion shuffle of ‘Y El Tiempo Pasa’ and ‘Kabumba’ by Hugo Jasa, while the likes of Contraviento and Travesia supply seductive bits of bucolic, pastoral psych folk and we can almost primacy you won’t be shifting the ohrwurms of Eduardo Mateo’s burbling Candombe rhythms in ‘El Chi-Li-Ban-Dan’ any time soon once bitten.
Do the Mogadishu hustle with Analog Africa’s superb new salvo, centring on Somalian dance music between 1972-1991 with 12 cuts ranging from tuff reggae chops to dubbed-out disco, tempo-switching funk, psychy audities and entrancing traditionals
“After being blown away by a few tunes – probably just as you will be after listening to this - Samy Ben Redjeb travelled to the infamous capital city of Somalia in November of 2016, making Analog Africa the first music label to set foot in Mogadishu.
On his arrival in Somalia Samy began rifling through piles of cassettes and listening to reel-to-reel tapes in the dusty archives of Radio Mogadishu, looking for music that "swam against the current".
The stars were aligned: an uncovered and unmarked pile of discarded recordings was discovered in a cluttered corner of the building. Colonel Abshir - the senior employee and protector of Radio Mogadishu's archives - clarified that the pile consisted mostly of music nobody had manage to identify, or music he described as being "mainly instrumental and strange music". At the words "strange music" Samy was hooked, the return flight to Tunisia was cancelled.
The pile turned out to be a cornucopia of different sounds: radio jingles, background music, interludes for radio programmes, television shows and theatre plays. There were also a good number of disco tunes, some had been stripped of their lyrics, the interesting parts had been recorded multiple times then cut, taped together and spliced into a long groovy instrumental loop. Over the next three weeks, often in watermelon, grapefruit juice and shisha-fuelled night-time sessions behind the fortified walls of Radio Mogadishu, Samy and the archive staff put together "Mogadisco: Dancing Mogadishu, 1974–1991”.”
First 12” disco cut of two simmering beauties from Jackie Mittoo’s legendary ‘Showcase’ (1980) album for Studio One
The A-side is given to a gorgeous, lolling 9-minute cut of ‘Oboe’ hustling Mittoo’s bubbling organ with lilting nyabinhgi and soft woodwind tones in a dead lush and dreamy style. ‘Wall Stret’ on the B-side contrast smartly with its ruder dubbing, riding swollen bass with shimmering organ chords and splashes of guitar for heads-down effect in the dance.
Premiere vinyl reissue of a Japanese no wave/disco-punk classic from 1980, newly remastered and dished up by Studio Mule. Hugely sought-after, original copies trade for triple figures!
A killer lesson in stripped down, nagging no wave drills, ‘Back Ground Music’ was first issued by the legendary Vanity Records in 1980 and has been sought-after ever since on the 2nd hand market. And it’s not hard to hear why. Like the tighter far eastern cousins of Wire, Liquid Liquid, Mars or DAF; BGM possessed a millimetre-tight groove control, a hypnotic feel for repetition and trippy mixing, and a strange way with near-whispered, mumbled vocals that sets them way out on their own.
Slipping its disco clogs on with deliciously slouchy bass, drums and guitar countered by clattering, two-left-footsteps in ‘Mix’, the LP impresses at every turn between the discordant jag of ‘Neo Dancer’, the primitivist no wave hunch of ‘Repeat’, and the sozzled swagger of ‘And’ on the A-side, before locking down a mean psych-disco groove with ‘Member Ship Card’, and what sounds like the Japanese grandpappies of Sleaford Mods on ‘In Put’, while a couple of beat-less oddities sandwich the brilliant, asymmetric rhythm and deeply odd use of drones and pealing electronics in ‘Romantic Recovery.’
Hard Drum producer TSVI slips into Mahraganat-inspired Anunaku mode for 3024 after a shot on Whities
Absorbing a palette of Arabic-sounding percussion, Annunaku weaves them into three steely but supple rollers ranging from the percolated patter and sweeping deep techno pads of ‘Stargate’, a B-more styled bumper stung with bleating saz pipes, and finally on a UKF-compatible tip with the snake-charming syncopation of ‘Atlas4088’.
Trippy electro/house cuts from Germany’s 386i, making his debut mission on Die Orakel
The A-side feels out psychedelic space between Jamal Moss and Andeas Gehm with a swaggering, offset electro-house groove swaddled in starry-eyed electronics in a low key but effective style, whereas the B-side eases off with a louche electro groove driven by ruder bass and swirled in romantically vintage-sounding, Drexicyan electronics.
Surgeon gets back to basics with a volley of steamers built for his sets at ADE 2018
Delivered in his most basic tonal language, he saddles up the cantering, chrome-frothing beast ‘Raw Trax 2’ before pushing the distortion to gum-rotting degrees in ‘Raw Trax 4’, and sees off any pretenders with the acrid dissonance of ‘Raw Trax 3’.
Blawan & Pariah’s Karenn give testament to their live prowess with recordings made in techno power centres: Berlin, Rome, and Amsterdam.
Following 2018’s launch of the Voam label with the ‘Kind of Green’ EP, the Voam Club Archive is a new home for examples of Karenn in their natural habitat - rolling out headstrong, hardware-built techno in big rooms.
Up top they deliver slivers of their live shows in Berlin, taking in a filtered, churning streak of acid techno trample alongside a tension-raising payload of swarming synth dissonance and demolition job kickdrums. Down below, through coincidence or not, they sound like a bruxist Lory D special with the metallic tang and dry-humping drive of ‘Rome (Live Cut 1)’, and ‘Amsterdam (Live Cut 1)’ dials up the distortion on a bone-rattling, fleggin’ stomp heavily skooled in late ‘90s Regis and Surgeon styles.
Most artists would struggle to put one album of the quality Liz Harris exhibited on 'Alien Observer' (the first part of her A I A double-header, also out now) but somehow she's managed to churn out a full two forty minute albums each as breathtaking as the last.
'Dream Loss' is the murkier, more grimy counterpart to 'Alien Observer's distant pop and travels still further into Liz's astral tape haze and noisy, vocal ambience. While the record might begin unassumingly enough with the downplayed 'Dragging the Streets', 'I Saw A Ray' greets us with a volcanic slither of noise and calloused harmony. This deeply buried melancholy transports us through the album, and while the noise subsides to make way for Liz's familiar layered vocal loops and subtle, withdrawn songs, the character and texture is still one of distortion and fragmentation as opposed to the occasional overt prettiness exhibited on 'Alien Observer'.
As Liz mentioned in the run-up to this ambitious double release, the albums are two very separate works, yet somehow feed off eachother when heard together. To hear one without the other is to only hear a single element of the whole piece - 'Dream Loss' adds the darkness, and in sinking deep into it we get a whole new understanding for 'Alien Observer'. It's a harrowing trip, but one laced with beauty, restraint and that unquantifiable magic that seems to grace mostly anything Liz Harris touches. Just buy it; you won't be disappointed.