Max Richter initiates Rough Trade’s Behind The Counter… series of mixtape/compilations with a smart survey of his tastes drawn from the records Rough Trade sell on the shop floor.
As you might hope for, or expect, its a refined mixture of canonical classics, post rock and contemporary electronic composition, ranging from pieces by Charles Ives, Lucio Berio and Rachmaninov, respectively, to work by Low, GY!BE and Mogwai, and the likes of Aphex Twin and Boards of Canada.
Airhead makes an overdue, beguiling reappearance with Kazzt for Different Circles’ collectible 12” series, backed with a wickedly crooked, flashcore-referencing remix by the label’s co-founder, Mumdance; his first remix in several years.
The insectoid, near psychoacoustic dynamics of Kazzt makes up Airhead’s most intriguing piece to date and also a sterling follow-up to his recent beat for Trim’s comeback on 1-800 Dinosaur - the label run by his peer and bandmate, James Blake.
Kazzt nimbly reduces his previous productions to an almost monotone, sloshing rhythm, siphoning off cultural signifiers to swoop and dissolve in its own abstract club dimensions.
Mumdance’s remix, his first in five years, reduces Kazzt even farther in line with Different Circles’ open-ended aesthetics; crisply defining and dividing its muscular-skeletal structure with concatenated flashcore kicks and weightless musique concrète punctuation to ‘floor shocking impact.
Weight-watchers special request from Logos for his and Mumdance's Different Circles label, backed with a blistering remix by their bandmate from The Sprawl, Shapednoise. The 'Glass EP' is perhaps the most extreme example of their self-coined "weightless" sound, communing the ghosts of UK hardcore, noise and ambient electronica in a dread-filled quartet of mindful killers. Opening with the pensile mesh of smashing foley, lashing mentasms and scything breakbeat impulses in Logos' cyber-dub, 'Glass', Shapednoise wrecks the thing with deft, calloused hands, swirling the mentasms deeper into thickets of eviscerating noise and abyssal bass subsidence. Providing relief, the B-side renders a lushly darkside ambient tingle with the icy UK scape of 'No Skyline', and 'Savanna Overlord' increases the temperature with what sounds like a extended, tantric intro for some Digital or Goldie classic off Metalheadz. Massive platter!
Wot do u call it? "Weightless, m8". The UK's most vapourous dancefloor mutation becomes a hyperstitious thing thanks to Logos & Mumdance's Different Circles label with this killer 7-track 12" starring themselves beside Boxed regulars, Inkke, Murlo, Dark0, Rabit and Strict Face. Taken quite literally, 'Weightless' is a sublimation of instrumental grime's classic tropes, diffusing the coiled, slippery templates of early Danny Weed and Wiley riddims into neon clouds of digital piff smoke; floating beyond conventional club/home listening schisms by transmuting grime's perceived aggression and momentum to a sort of feminine pressure and pensile hyper-stasis enabled by current production techniques. If that sounds a bit dry on screen, the results are actually hugely sensual, revelling in pointillist electronics and spatial dynamics from Mumdance, Logos and Rabit's hyper-prismic collaboration, 'Inside The Catacomb' thru the aching synthetic emotion of Dark0's 'Sweet Boy Tears' and the oily tessellations of Murlo's 'Geist' in a way that lucidly resonates with the ultra-modern aesthetics of Lars T C F Holdhus, Lorenzo Senni and Mark Fell. A must.
“In the summer of 2015, A L'ARME! Festival invited Konstrukt to perform with William Parker and Holiday Records teamed up with Matt Bordin of Outside Inside Studio to invite the quartet to play two shows in Italy on their way to Berlin. Plans overlapped leaving two days off spent playing with no interruption at Matt's studio in Montebelluna, capturing four incredible tracks. Now, Konstrukt are well known for their many collaborations with key players and real giants of worldwide jazz scene, but - once again - having the chance to listen to the music they produce when they play "by their own" is something special. Their tribute to the past is paid with every single tune they play, but these recordings are something that can only be described as "new music”.”
Last heard on the Infinite Greyscale label, Peter Broderick’s choir ensemble are in fine voice on Sunday Songs for South London’s First Terrace Records
“First Terrace Records present The Beacon Sound Choir singing Sunday Songs - a project conceived by Peter Broderick and brought to life through collaborations with a number of Portland-based individuals including David Allred, Holland Andrews (Like a Villain), Branic Howard and Heather Woods Broderick.
Beacon Sound Choir is one of Broderick’s most ambitious and avant-garde projects to date. Utilising the harmonies of a 35 strong choir, Sunday Songs plays out with an almost religious undercurrent; the product of individuals inspired to commit a divine act of collaboration, recalling the rare splendour of a community in seamless alliance.
This is not to place the choir in an unattainable bracket however. As Peter explains, the aim of the project was simply to get as many people singing together as possible, regardless of musical experience. The relaxed demeanour of the singers and the occasional unguarded moments of wonder and excitement betray the true nature of the recordings, that they were not made to be works of art in their own right, but rather to serve as a snapshot of a glorious phenomena; documents of a small miracle occurring on Sunday mornings at the Beacon Sound record shop in Portland, Oregon, where for Peter the act of singing became “nothing short of a magical teleportation to another realm”.
As well as the original choir recordings, the album also features a sprawling ambient rework from the endlessly inventive Machinefabriek, which he describes as “a patchwork, connecting and expanding the more dreamlike parts of Sunday Songs into a sea of voices, where it’s unclear where one voice stops and the other begins.” His jaw-dropping reinterpretation of the source material is informed in some ways by the work of Renaissance composer Josquin des Prez. “When I discovered his choir music not so long ago I realized that ambient music already existed around the 1500s”).”
The UK / US grime dialogue in full flow on the 3rd action from Mumdance and Logos' Different Circles label. Rabit soars beat-less across the A-side with 'Tearz', a weightless vision of gleaming, Michael Mann-esque synth arpeggios infiltrated by vocal idents recalling Elysia Crampton's collage style. A real scene setter waiting to blend in-the-mix. UK's Strict Face mans the flip with a sadlad treat entitled 'Into Stone' - which was apparently signed within 15 minutes of Logos and Mumdance hearing it. The roadwise melancholy of classic Ruff Sqwad meets slo-mo 2-step in the original, whereas the Widows Version dries out the drums for a proper, end of night tearjerker.
Sublime debut of ambient/house mulch from a promising new artist hailing from the island-minded English north-east, dispatched as the first release on the Paris/Peckham-based Panatype label.
Home casts the listener adrift in tranquil but murky, nocturnal waters, navigating a course from the gorgeous, slow-bubbling textures and puce hued pads of Meed Trope to what sounds like a Burial sample opening Probe (One Full Rotation), which soon morphs into a perfectly low key, swinging house hustle aching with a bruised brass motif and ghostly pall that sends shivers down the spine, before entering dark ambient freefall with the Deathprod-like Springbok.
Flipside, a lethargic throb carries PSR into a foggy echo chamber, layers peeling away like of lo-fi analog to the grafts of Kara-Lis Coverdale’s eponymous piece, and the Burial tones return in crackly formation on Probe (EYB Reductions), returning us to plangent, glass rubbed tones recalling K-LC in the closing sanctuary of Home.
Some heads are going to fall in love with this one…