Greek producer Pasiphae pushes a tense, furtive and killer electro-Italo-EBM sound on Interstellar Funk’s Artificial Dance
Recalling classic Murder Capital vibes as much as Helena Hauff’s contemporary scum budgers, but with an added air of ancient Hellenic intrigue, the Siphax EP is a strong testament to Fotini Kappa’s solo sound following her introduction on the Made Of Glass  hook-up with Intergalactic Gary for Bio Rhythm.
A-side, she bites down with steel-fanged jaws in the Giallo-esque scene-setter, Tachyons, then shifts down a gear for the aching sleaze and drama of Vertical Rotation, urged by evilly turgid subass and nerve-gnawing synths. B-side keeps up the pressure with Bladerunner-esque stacks of brassy synth flare in Quelque Chose De Mauvais recalling Afrodeutsche’s recent ace for Skam, logically pursued by the funereal Quelque Chose De Mal to an exceptional parting shot with the unharnessed, Italinate arps of header working just as usefully as an outro or dramatic set-starter in the right claws.
Hypnotic ambient techno-electro hydraulics from Finland’s Rasmus Hedlund
A-side drops in with the wide, cavernous bass rolige and crepuscular string pads of Bas Emfas, saving a curdled chromatic lead for when it matters, followed by the rasping, bittersweet electrodes of Luminös Klang.
B-side, he locks off the silty brownian Braindance motion of Conflux Sevens, and the weightless, half-stepping ambient pressure of Sonisk Morgonsyn.
Reissue of Peggy Gou’s 2nd release and debut for Phonica White
A-side features a trimmed and filtered take on Tronco Traxx’ Drops ; B-side is a raw, deep and rude acid burner layered with her own dreamy vocals.
Début turn from Yris Den for Köln’s Magazine
Who make their way from scudding synth chorales in Venial Elevate, to brittle, swung mid-tempo rhythms recalling Tolouse Low Trax grooves in Strafen, onto tight, prodding electro on Amen Auro Atha, and a sort of cyber dancehall-electro in Veniale Excavate.
Raime mutate Eski grime, post-punk, R&B, dembow rhythms and a bank of YouTube ‘Fail’ samples on this killer twelve for Different Circles, big if yr into Jon E Cash, Rapid, Rian Treanor, Gabor Lazor, Low Jack, Photek's 'Ni-Ten-Ichi-Ryu'...
Raime reach a pivotal moment in their catalogue with the sidewinders of Am I Using Content Or Is Content Using Me?, their first plate for Mumdance & Logos’ Different Circles label and club collective.
After years of drilling their message home thru belligerent repetition, the crucial London duo here go fractiously febrile, ephemeral and non-linear, probing a certain sort of feminine pressure across four tracks drawing as much from grime, post-punk and jungle as afrobeats R&B and dembow rhythms, and cannily splashed with samples lifted from the kind of “Fail” videos that hog YouTube’s recommendations sidebar.
Taken in context of the dark humour and ‘ardcore hauntological spirit which binds all their work, the results form a radical rethink of the Raime sound allowing for more chaos, space and knife-edge vulnerability within their often chokingly tight productions. Where their previous productions may have felt like tunnelling into a dank rave at London’s core, their current sound better reflects the shifting mosaic of the city’s cultural, socio-economic and political landscape, effectively rendering a brutalist 3D gymnasium or in-progress construction site for their wickedly augmented ideas to cut loose, and quite literally embracing the failure, fleeting emotions and nerve-riding uncertainty that comes with the terrain.
In opener Some Things Can Happen, Just Like This they persistently switch the pattern from vaporous dembow bumps to synthetic chorales in a sort of mutant 8-bar dramaturgy, while Real People, Not Actors observes an everyday fine line between aggression and play with ravishing yet elusive 2-step design comparable to Total Freedom clashing Burial over post-codes or a broken fidget spinner.
The palpitating, rapid flux of Our Valleys Are Always Uncanny is more agitated and wild-eyed than anything else in their catalogue, perhaps imagining Skepta’s Stageshow Rhythm after the cast has left and the duppies come out to play, before The Nourishment Cycle wraps up razor-chopped samples and melodic percussion in a way that feels like witnessing a bleeding cross-section of the city come to life, all sinew and sawn-off syllables tessellating in suspenseful animation.
It’s thrilling, edge-of-seat music, a breath of fresh air that’s certain to flip presumptions of Raime on their head.
John T. Gast in total snake charmer mode, owning and aligning your chakras with two tracks “from the ark circa 2013”
Further to his exquisite wygdn 10” and Young Druid album in 2017, and the recent Docile hook-up with Tribe of Colin for TTT in ’18, John T. Gast scrolls back into the mists of his hard drive on BTEC Version #1 to roughly around the time we were first beguiled by his work as Henny Moan and just cottoning onto his now better known alias.
We’d wager these are some of the earliest tracks he made in John T. Gast mode, and it’s not hard it draw a line between the durational meditation of his nine minute Terminator trudge ANGELA, with the slow pressure of wygdn_bashmenttk9, for example. However, DRITH is just out on its own, coming up with a briny electronic whine and clod-stepping drums that frankly sound like fcuk all else, beyond a barnyard of mechanical animals.
Young Echo’s Ossia ruffs up and danks out the dance for Blackest Ever Black inna gothic Bristolian style
Crossing paths with BEB for the 2nd time following his crushing Red X session, Ossia grimly socks it to London’s finest with the recoiling stepper, Dub Hell; a sludgy hot slug of distorted, buzzing subs harnessed to trampling kick and dragged backward thru an echoplex to frazzled effect.
Following that leyline to a logical conclusion, Devil’s Dance distills and renders that negative energy as an arcane air for Beelzebub, marshalling brittle drum patterns on marching manoeuvres into an inky blacknuss of no return, with blood-curdling screams beckoning from the perimeters.
Not nice in the best way.
Addendum to the smashing ‘Intra Musique’ LP, Alga Marghen serve ‘more Intra Musique’ from the radical fringes of Paris, France in 1969. Practically worth it for the A-side’s will cut-up, but chuck in an eight minute drum solo on the B-side and you’ve got a winner
“More Intra Musique, the second in Alga Marghen’s series dedicated to previously unreleased recording by the drummer and experimentalist Jacques Thollot, draws on the same body of recordings from which the first release, Intra Musique, was built. With none of the spirit and fire lost, this time we hear from a duo of Eddie Gaumont on prepared piano, and Thollot on drums, piano, prepared piano, synth, and tapes.
These efforts, despite the sharing of personal, couldn’t be more different than those which appeared on Intra Musique, venturing far into purely experimental realms. It’s hard to express how stunning and resistant to definition they are, at times flirting with the simple elegance of the furniture music of Erik Satie, before shifting toward the wild, frantic piano music of figures like Conlon Nancarrow, the pulsing, chaotic synths of Groupe De Recherches Musicales, Moondog, and the inspiration of field recordings from Africa and beyond. It’s all in there, and it’s stunning to beyond - shifting between worlds wild and cooly intelligent constructions in should. An absolute revelation, which rethinks everything we know about French free- improvisation. Like it predecessor, this long lost recording from the visionary mind of Jacques Thollot is overwhelmingly important and not to be missed on any count!”
‘Blue Jays’ forms a head-turning introduction to Atlanta’s Sequoyah Murray, with a sound equally influenced by Arthur Russell, YMO and east African music
A product of his generation, the 21 year old has been writing music since 2012, guided by a percussionist father and vocalist mother to realise his music thru a mix of his own vocals and a range of software and samples.
The result: a lushly-tempered, giddy spiral of kosmiche synths and rich baritone swelling with dramatic momentum into something like an Arca ballad produced by Novo Line, neatly setting the scene for a soon come début album.
In Pessimist, Blackest Ever Black’s furtive D&B agent submits a killer debut LP recce from the no man’s land between jungle, tekno and greyscale electronics - a definitively Bristolian sound. Forming a logical expansion of the themes explored in his work with the Ruffhouse trio and in solo shots for A14 and Osiris Music UK over recent years, his first album finds him working in acres of negative space to fully indulge his worries for the dance, arguably resulting in a new high-water mark for the D&B album format.
Thanks to a natural predilection for minimalism and a fine tuned sensitivity towards textured, atmospheric detail, Pessimist succeeds where the vast majority of D&B long-players fail; fundamentally keeping our interest without resorting to beating us around the head with the latest plugin acrobatics. Rather, Pessimist uses techniques of stealth and guile to draw in and toy with his prey, resulting a far more intriguing and satisfying dispatch from the dark side of the echo chamber.
Like we say, it’s sculpted as a proper album, as opposed to a clutch of middling bangers, replete with intro, outro and a tempered transfer of energy between the tracks that necessarily curves the listener’s enthusiasm between pockets of dank ambience, dread dub dimensions and rolling, ghostly tech-steppers.
Aside from the bolshy techno of Peter Hitchens and clinical badboy rolige of Through The Fog, it’s all exclusive new material, churning up some robust highlights with Grit’s hunched and grubbing torque, and the stark, crispy Spirals, but we’d have to point to his No Matter What collaboration with Overlook for the LP’s most impressive mutation of pure UK bassbin pressure. If we’ve any gripes, though, it’s from the splashback of his breakbeats that come in half way thru Grit and dominating his Glued link-up with Loop Faction, but apart from those, it’s a proper dark fantasy.
Seminal Detroit/Berlin techno business, originally issued in 1993, repressed for 2017.
Ranking among the finest efforts of the transatlantic techno axis, Jazz Is The Teacher signalled new paths for the sound upon release, pairing Juan’s hi-tech jazz with the expansive sound design of Moritz Von Oswald and his Palais Schaumburg bandmate, Thomas Fehlmann, who were both instrumental in bringing techno to Berlin in late ‘80s. The result is a soaring, swooping masterpiece with a breathtaking two minute intro giving way to irresistible techno funk with tidy fake-outs and needlepoint drum programming.
No hype, this record is the maddest belter you’ll hear this year. A rinse thru three hundred and three acid cherries pitted and sequenced, tweak for tweak, into the only rave weapon you’ll ever need.
Taking Evol's obsession with Roland’s squelchy grey box to an ultimate, logical conclusion that leaves dancefloors turned utterly inside out and begging for track ID’s, it’s the kind of idea that has been floated in raves, smoking areas and afterparties for the past 20 years but has never been executed with such precise method and inexorable effect, until now.
Taking way too many classics to mention, EVOL modulate a cascade of liquified riffs that last anywhere between 1 beat and a few bars before shifting to the next pattern, and so forth. The cumulative effect of elastic undulation is mind-bending and body-jacking in the extreme, yet uncompromisingly crafted at the immediate service of the rave.
It feels as though much of EVOL’s practice to date, from mixes for FACT and Reel Torque, to their experimental objets for Alku and blasts for Presto!?, Diagonal and BUS have been leading to this point: the ultimate acid rave tool.
Beautifully resdesigned and remastered reissue of this Sakamoto classic.
"In 1983, David Bowie and Ryuichi Sakamoto shared the bill in the unforgettable “Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence” by Nagisa Ōshima. Its soundtrack, composed by Ryuichi Sakamoto in an original style, combines classical occidental symphonic composition, traditional Japanese sounds, and experimental electronic music."
Strategy goes deep into the echo chamber on ‘Dub Mind Paradigm’, drawn fresh from ZamZam Sounds mystic well
This is Paul Dickow a.k.a. Strategy in his element, alchemically turning a paucity of ingredients into dub gold via masterful sleight of hand and with a tactility that your speakers will surely approve of.
Dubbers, your time!
This post-revolution Iranian album from 1985 is so ahead of its time, so completely off on its own sonically and stylistically - that you'd be forgiven for thinking it were a hoax.
In reality it's one of the most sought-after and exceptional records from the Smithsonian Folkways catalogue, here brought back to life in this facsimile edition put together by the Dead Cert imprint. Until now, it's been the preserve of a small handful of collectors who rightly hold it in huge regard and close to their chests. A syncretic traversal of Iranian folk music and modular synth strafing radio-phonic, musique concrète, neo-tanktrik and sound design disciplines, it simply sounds quite unlike anything out there (if you know better, please, please share!) and has had us, and everyone who's heard it, utterly enraptured.
OK, there may be some precedents in the work of electronic music pioneer Ilhan Mimaroglu, and it has undoubtedly directly or indirectly inspired music that has come since (Keith Fullerton Whitman's 'Variations For Oud & Synthesizer', for instance), but we're sure you'll agree that the elements have rarely gelled so fluidly, phantastically psychedelic as this, before or since. It's possible to trace that combination of traditional and contemporary styles, mixed with a liberating sense of freedom and abstract expression, to the composer's history; from early enrolment in Shah-sponsored music schools and conservatories he was awarded scholarship for further studies in Holland, and when the revolution arrived in Iran he would permanently leave for the world famous Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center in the late '70s, all priming Dariush's tastes and skills for these recordings made during the mid '80s, late at night in the university studios with the permission of Professor Ussachevsky.
It's testament to its enduring magic that listening back now for the umpteenth time we're still bewildered and vividly transported as we were the first time, lost to its roil of tangled timbres and etheric dynamism, keeling to the metallic lushness of the strings and rendered mindblown at the synchronised sweeps of modular synth and simulated environs. It's a genuine wonder of the electronic music world, and an utterly essential listen, by anyones standards.
DJ Richard follows the ‘Path of Ruin’ to his discopocalytic sophomore LP, ‘Dies Irae Xerox’; a super robust collection of darkwave ambient, EBM and Memphis rap-style instrumentals inspired by “depictions and philosophies of the antichrist and end-times”
Picking up where he left us with the darker themes of Grind , the NYC/Berlin-stationed producer pretty much leaves the slinkier house and techno themes for dust in order to better explore mutant, classic hardcore strains of electronic music in his own way.
Opener Dies Irae Xerox could easily be mistaken for the work of Hospital Productions orderly, while the scowling 808 slap downs of Pitfall and Gate Of Roses explore rugged hip hop/electro somewhere between Pametex, SALEM and Tommy Wright III. They’re some of our favourites, along with the curdling sewer juice of Tunnel Stalker and the Cortini-esque Old Winter’s Way, but the rest of the album is strong, too; especially on its fanged dancefloor aces such as the needle-toothed EBM of Vanguard, and the doomcore slug of In Broad Daylight.
The unfathomable quantity of Pan Daijing meets Werner Dafeldecker’s mercurial sound art on this surprise, limited edition 7" pressing.
Leading on from her heavily arresting Lack album for the PAN label, A Page To A Corner is Daijing's first collaborative release. The title track is a lethargically hypnagogic thing, with Daijing lamenting an unseen force, bound into a mesh of monotone drones and keening strings to ultimately quease-inducing effect.
On the B-side, Daughters of The Botanist, Daijing's death croak vocals are placed front and centre of the mix against a more dynamic backdrop of gong-like tones that gradually recede to leave the slithering sound of extended instrumental techniques and brownian electronics.
Two classic nyabinghi albums Rastafari and Kibir-Am-Lak onto one record
Squaring off the best Ras Michael & The Sons Of Negus recorded with producer Tommy Cowan in the ‘70s, featuring heavyweight line-up of Peter Tosh, Earl “Chinna” Smith, Robbie Shakespeare, Robbie Lyn, Tommy McCook, Carlton “Santa” Davis.
Superb selections and sequencing from Forest Swords on his DJ-Kicks instalment
Cutting across the board from The London Bulgarian Choir’s Pilentsee Pee (as referenced in the Ghost In The Shell OST), thru Rhythm & Sound’s Best Friend evergreen; rude post punk from Anna Domino and Neneh Cherry; skulking D&B by FIS & Tokyo Prose; goth steppers from Dead Can Dance; a elusive beauty by Kara-Lis Coverdale; spidery jazz techno rhythms from Laurel Halo, Rupert Clervaux & Beatrice Dillon; and esoteric charms by Demdike Stare, Orbital, David Toop and Baka Forest People of Southeast Cameroon.