With a pedigree for great covers (see: "Seven Nation Army"), Alice Russell has smashed this cover of Connan Mockasin with James Blake-esque spaciousness and sombre sobriety. Further on she returns to a style that's instantly hers with "Citizens" - jaunty, precision jazz beats that leave heaps of room for Alice's signature emphatics to really smoulder. Finally we hit a jacking D Felic remix of "Breakdown". Featuring absolute soul legend Darondo, we can't wait to hear the original when the album drops later this year. Stunning.
Last seen on the Tru Thoughts label back in 2011 with his debut LP Chapters, London-based Masaaki Yoshida aka Anchorsong resurfaces on the like-minded BBE with the Mawa EP. The time out of the spotlight has evidently seen Yoshida expand on his production palette as the downtempo stylings of his Tru Thoughts output has been traded for something a lot more upbeat on the four tracks here. The lead track is a dizzying melange of sampled African chants and tape saturated percussion blessed with some abstract textural detail, whilst "Flamingos" features some excellent marimba manipulation and gives Jamie xx a run for his money in the emotive bass music stakes. The tempo gets thrusted upwards with "Ivory" though there is still a delicate feel to the overall production, whilst closing track "Mantra" sounds like Shangaan Electro gone UK house.
Stay The Same (feat Andreya Triana) - (4:57) 100 BPM
Heaven For The Sinner (feat Szjerdene) - (4:25) 101 BPM
Prelude/Kiara/Ten Tigers - (8:09) 50 BPM
Kong/Ketto - (8:08) 99 BPM
Emkay - (3:57) 129 BPM
Towers (feat Szjerdene) - (6:05) 136 BPM
Recurring/We Could Forever - (7:59) 118 BPM
Transits (feat Szjerdene) - (4:17) 129 BPM
Know You - (5:20) 129 BPM
Pieces (feat Cornelia) - (4:29) 50 BPM
A couple of years ago, Ninja Tune's Bonobo scored a big hit with his album The North Borders. Then he went on tour and The Borders Tour Live is what it sounds like. It's an 11-track beast comprising cuts recorded at The Roundhouse, Camden Town, The Pula Arena, Croatia and some live radio sessions too. When this career-defining tour wraps up at Alexandra Palace in November the band will have travelled 180,000 miles, taken in 175 shows in 30 countries across 3 continents over 18 months in front of 2 million people, but you can hear it here.
It's been a three-year wait for Amansara, the third album by Argentina's Chancha Via Circuito. Originally a leading light of Buenos Aires's digital cumbia scene, he abandoned ship to order pursue a fusion of Brazilian rhythms, Paraguayan harp and Andean mysticism (all through the prism of his take on dubstep). This evolution saw him gain more acclaim, with some of his music even appearing in Breaking Bad. Here "Coplita" resonates with Miram Garcia's haunting vocals, "Sueno En Paraguay" merges Andean folk with digi bleeps and tribal drums and "De Tuo Manto" closes the LP with a gentle Rainforest audio mist.
Previously a rare-as-hens-teeth private press from 1984, Tears & Whispers is the result of one synth-curious singer who kitted his studio with some the period's most exciting machines, called up a few friends and started jamming. The result is a jazz-boogie document that sits somewhere between Innervisions-era Stevie, Mr Gone-era Weather Report and Afro Strut-era Amp Fiddler (which arrived over 20 years later). While Dan's vocals are strong, they could never be defined as show-stopping - the synths and instrumentation, however, most certainly can. The high impact boogie freneticisms of "Blame It On Love" the gossamer slap bass and swooning bent notes of "A Million & One" and the sudden spells of heaven-sent horns on the title track are all testament to this. A unique timepiece that's aged with respectable maturity.
FaltyDL - "Atlantis" (Bogus Order Reorder) - (5:22) 59 BPM
The artfully titled Ninja Tune Traktion EP finds the storied label dip into their vast archives to offer Traktor DJs exclusive stems to help convolute their sets with a range of obscure sounds and classics. For some basslines and synths to throw over drums or percussion the Bogus Order Reorder of Falty DL's "Atlantis" is an obvious choice, as can be said about the snares and hyperactive synths of the Spacelab remix to Starkey's "Blood Roses". The manner in which Seiji messed with that classic synth riff to Coldcut & Hexstatic's "Timber" ensures his remix can always be left as is, and for something more melodic and liquid funky there's the chiming and remixed sounds of DJ Food's "Dark Lady".