Sean Canty and Miles Whittaker make a swift return to the Testpressing series with a sixth installment arriving just a month after the excellent TP#5. The superbly titled "40 Years Under The Cosh" finds the Demdike pair wedged in the punishing crawlspace between detroit techno and vintage grime for six thrilling mind bending minutes, with the track gradually falling apart at the seams as the middle of the track draws close. Fans of both Pharrell Williams and Demdike Stare (there must be one or two) will probably express disappointment that "Frontin" isn't a cover of the big hatted fella's noughties hit; instead it's a brutal exercise in lurching industrial wave that will fry the brain cells of unsuspecting individuals.
Hospital Productions is a non-stop operation and following this year's long-players from Alessandro Cortini, Ninos Du Brasil and Ron Morelli, Vatican Shadow's latest swoop is this ambient album produced with Function. The seven-track LP was recorded between Berlin and New York, and it's described as best suited for after-hours home listening, but whether you really want to listen to this after a big night is up to you. Indeed "A Year Has Passed" and "A Year Has Gone By" are downbeat and melancholic, whereas other tracks lean more towards industrial ambient, similar to fellow Hospital artist Lussuria's work. "The Nemesis Flower" is a darker highlight while "Red Opium" and "Bejewelled Body" is where the house and techno beats lie.
The Essence Of The Earth As Arch As Arc - (4:30) 152 BPM
Bodycells Fortress - (4:42) 89 BPM
There With The Boxer The Fog & Pale Queens In White Panties Dance - (3:19) 96 BPM
Blind Guide Killing A Lioness - (2:36) 89 BPM
On The Roads A Message Of Home - (2:22) 150 BPM
Her Prints Will Light The Path - (3:01) 90 BPM
Birthnight - (13:57) 140 BPM
Prince Of The Immortal Woods - (4:17) 157 BPM
With a mind-bending array of releases behind him, largely on cassette, it's not easy to get a firm grip on what Hans Dens' Innercity project is all about, but then that's not necessarily what it's about. In the same spirit of adventure that possesses the likes of Ekoplekz, the music on A Lion Baptism is a chaotic blend of noise and drone studies with a nod to Musique Concrete in the manic and detailed deployment of samples. At times this can reach discernible musical peaks, only to be manhandled by another barrage of sonic grot wielded with a thrilling impulsiveness. The diversity on the release will keep your brain on its toes, touching upon so many different tones and moods across the eight track savagery.
Stephan Laubner aka STL usually indulges in gritty, tape-kissed house groovers, but his Lunatik Sound System project is reserved solely for his most daring moments. Beats, arrangements and hooks are dissolved to wandering slices of percussion, floaty drones and odd melodies covered with a pinch of machine noise for good measure. It's soundtrack music at its most finest, where tracks like "The Golden Mandala" truly make you lose sense of space and time by taking you to another dimension. Fans, you know, newcomers, get to know. Another sublime Something release!