Ron Trent meets french house player Manoo on a high class pair of deep house drug-cutters.
The Sound trades in slinky, Afro-latinate shuffle layered up with spiritual vocals and a haze of brass, synth and strings to properly sensuous appeal in a widescreen sound design lit up with thunder and lightning.
The Reprise condenses all that into a more succinct mix of tropical storm systems and fluid tribal percussions, which they dry out for the leaner, arid dub where the thunder still strikes, but leaves the players dry to do their hustle.
AnD return with a 2nd album, Social Decay; a triple-barrelled buckshot of industrial techno scrabble and noise scree ranking as the most destructive and singularly bloody-minded in their belt-straining catalogue.
Untangling themselves from the looping traps of four-to-the-‘floor hard techno, Social Decay bares their pebble-dashed dentistry in 13 parts that seem to outdo each other for levels of sheer atonality and hard-to-stomach torque, erring much closer to the freeform structures of late ‘90s french hardtek and flashcore - Hangars Liquides, Mouse, Somatic Responses - than the gubber big room bangers heard in previous releases.
Meters are masticated, distortion pushed sorely into the red, but cannily leaving room for dynamic so that the whole thing swells and blows like a GM modified bull/porcupine chimera in razing highlights like the Scorn-esque Resisting Authority and Narcissism, but really pulling out all the punctuation with the flinching cadaver and Prurient-liek vox of Corrupted Structures, and churning up deconsecrated BM/grindcore ground in Anarchic Rhapsody.
It’s a massive step forward for the duo from their lunk-headed style to something far more evil, possessing and ferally off-grid.
From member of Matt ’Toast of London’ Berry’s backing band, Jonas 3, to cooking up whirring techno as Cocktail Party Effect, Charlie Baldwin has seemingly led a more exciting life than most.
Following a split 12” with Nomine and his solo album, Helloyellow in 2016, he goes hard and crafty on Pinch’s Cold Recordings with four rogue rollers; leaning in the IDM-like intricacies of Battered, bubbling up rugged UKG/dubstep in OOYFM, and then with punchy Breaks on Intens, and the El-B styled dark swang of I Kno3.
Straight from his Saturne duo with ASC, Sam KDC pushes off solo into the grey area with four cuts of rumbling techno pressure and Burial-esque darkside rolige.
With his atmospheric instincts to the fore, Sam feels out expansive, gloomy industrial space around the offset kicks of Oracle, and what sounds like an early Burial in the back-masked loops and low lying Reese basses of Pareidolia.
Mercurial Dreams catches him tucking the rhythms where the sun don’t shine as he operates in a murky foreground of RPG-like sound design, then drawing lines from early Suicide up to modern D&B with the palpitating menace of Tower of Babel at the EP’s perimeter.
Instrumental Grime’s forward standard bearers back on road with four straight bullets from new and staple players.
Fresh blood comes from Manchester’s Fallow, squeezing off the Jon E Cash-style 8-bar murder of Rearmament, and Rebore keeps the energy levels up with the bullet riddled and highly strung Campaign.
From the more experienced quarters, Boylan & Oil Gang unload the spartan soundsystem clash of MurderOne and trust Slackk and Logos to take it farther out with the intricate construction of Moroccan Squares, mixing Logos’ signature atmospheres and synth washes with powerful but slippery mid-range torque.
Henry Keen tees up his 2nd 12” as The Room Below for DBA
Doing his thing with jazzy broken beat flair with On The Rhodes; tending to African influences with the lissom, sloshing hustle of marimbas and percolated percussion in Icy; eazing off into slow-mo boogie with Ants In Amber, and dropping a hip to the devilishly swung offbeats of Black Cast.
Rhythm Section Intl.’s Edits From… series ropes in Kev Gorman for a return to the chop shop styles of his early Adesse Versions.
A-side he dispenses a chunky funk break turnt and filtered for the disco-house crowd with jagger.
B-side he rolls out a knobblier cut-up with Run Out recalling the Bohannon-sampling flex of Smith ’N Hack.
Dälek return to Ipecac for their new album, ‘Endangered Philosophies’.
"Pioneers of alt hip-hop, Dälek features rapper / producer MC Dälek, producer / live electronics Mike Manteca and turntablist DJ rEk. With roots in the mid-90s DIY scene, Dälek have consistently released groundbreaking albums, starting with their 1998 debut EP, ‘Negro Necro Nekros’, to 2016’s ‘Asphalt For Eden’, hailed by Pitchfork for its subtlety and restraint, saying “on ‘Asphalt For Eden’, hip hop ascends into the noosphere.”
Kieran Hebden (Four Tet) adopts the KH moniker last used on The Track I've Been Playing That People Keep Asking About And That Joy Used In His RA Mix And Daphni Played On Boiler Room 12” for this posh big beat-style cut-up on his Text label.
Your guess is as good as ours to the original sample, but there’s little Question to the track’s efficacy in big rom situations, especially when the big kick comes in...
Craven Faults makes a soaring maiden voyage with the cascading, krauty flights of Netherfield Works on Lowfold Works. Imagine Klaus Schulze on a magic carpet from Ikea flying over Ilkley Moor while supping from a flask of Tetley; you’ve got the vibe.
“Netherfield Works is the debut release from Craven Faults. Two long form pieces for half-remembered journeys across post-industrial Yorkshire. On first impression it appears to be a journey through a uniform landscape, past familiar mills, peaks and dales. Until you start to notice the details. The devil’s in the details. It occupies your peripheral vision. It leaves you questioning how you arrived where you did. How did we get here?
It almost certainly started in Düsseldorf or Köln. Or possibly The San Francisco Tape Music Centre. It’s not important. The journey to Yorkshire is somewhat hazy. Hansa by the Wall, 1977. Stockholm’s Museum Of Modern Art, 1968. Maida Vale, 1963. Rugby, 1986. It enters Yorkshire via Kingston-upon-Hull. Although, even that isn’t set in stone. It’s not important. It’s important to ask the question every now and then. The answers less so.
Banks of vintage equipment. A master craftsman at work in a nest of patch cables within an old textile mill. The tracks appear at their own pace. They gestate between recording sessions for other artists. There are guests on ‘Tenter Ground’. The single take drums deserve a special mention: a study in restraint and execution. ‘Eller Ghyll’ is perhaps a better signpost. From humble beginnings: a trickle into a mighty torrent. How did we get here?”
Lean, mean takes on classic EBM from Savage Hymn, a new duo swallowed up whole by San Francisco’s Dark Entries.
La Vida Sigue Igual is a canny riff on the Liaisons Dangereuses EBM template, alloying Spanish vox with rusty kick and offset lead synth to make you wriggle like a greasy eel in the full version and instrumental.
Animals is a bit straighter, going hard on the 4 with cracked kick drum and cranky acid motifs galvanised by metallic FX in the pounding V1, and hingeing off sleazy electro snare in the nimble kink of V2.
The Early Years follow up last year’s comeback album ‘II’ with a new EP featuring two reworkings of ‘Hall Of Mirrors’ by Andrew Weatherall, which the man himself describes as “like taking Steve Reich down the disco with a bit of acid thrown in”.
"Joining him on remix duties are Andy Bell from the reformed and rejuvenated shoegaze legends Ride, who welds the bassline from Wayne Smith’s ‘Under Mi Sleng Teng’ on to 'For The Fallen’ and turns it into a pulsating electronic groove. Finally, The Early Years’ Sonic Cathedral labelmate XAM (aka Matthew Benn from Hookworms) stretches out ‘Fluxus’ into 13 exhilarating minutes of Kraftwerk meets New Order (circa ‘Power, Corruption & Lies’) meets Simple Minds’ ‘Theme For Great Cities’."
The dutch raw house dream team go threes on this ruddy bugger
Stirring the 303s with Aryd’s mazy Acid mix of Dreadfully Nervous, plus a dusty Stoned Version comparable with Jamal Moss and Steve Poindexter’s Faces Drums styles, while the B-side dispenses a proper, Bam Bam-style acid sleaze bomb in No Soul (Shallow String Mix), mutant vox included!
Todd Modes follows up the earthy, jazzy house touch of his Native Visions EP for Fit Sound with this sweetly tempered beatdown remix of Cottam’s I Can’t Carry On hustle, perfectly balanced for warm-ups and warm downs.
Gorgeous, floating ambient architecture crafted on an iPhone by Tokyo’s H Takahashi, one of many pearls picked out by Where To Now? Classically-styled in the mould of Eno, Roedelius, Satie, also resonating with Anthony Manning’s crystal clear electronica...
“H.Takahashi, Tokyo based Architect and sound designer follows up his revered collection ‘Where To Be?’ on Where To Now? records with ‘Raum’, a full length LP suite of meditative Pulse Minimalism.
‘Raum’ draws it’s cues from a melting pot of closely connected yet wholly individual strands of Minimalism - from the Japanese Minimalist works from the likes of Hiroshi Yoshimura and Satoshi Ashikawa, to masters such as Erik Satie and John Cage, and Ambient leaders Brian Eno and Roedelius, Takahashi soaks this historical influence and rings it out it through a modern filter to create a record of stillness, ethereal beauty, and transcendent energy.
Takahashi composes all of his music on his iPhone, and this is no gimmick, rather a conscious decision which allows Takahashi to constantly create ‘on the go’ without the constraints of space, and for Takahashi ‘Raum’ serves as a mediation on the relationship between sound and it’s environment.
For Takahashi this creative process “feels something like an invisible phenomenon taking over & mutating these constantly changing spaces into abstract sound, creating a brief pseudo space which expresses and highlights the features of the environment for a moment in time.” Although perhaps quite an abstract statement of intent, when deeply immersed into Takahashi’s pieces this idea of slowly gliding through different architectural spaces is naturally conjured through the gentle repetitive pulse which runs through his work and the playful unstructured tonality of objects which weave around this forward (or upward) motion.
‘Raum’ was created across the city of Tokyo, be it a Café / Park / Office / Road / Platform / Subway these pieces explore the power sound holds to emotionally enhance and mutate the listeners environment.
The power of the music presented is in that which is barely there, embracing space, silence, and cyclical repetition. The music is to help us function - it's music to work to, to sleep to, to help us find a sense of space and oneness within a world that is increasingly wild and untameable.”