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24 Apr 12
Review: In a blur of leftfield tendencies, Arca throws down some decidedly unusual hip-hop for Uno, sounding remarkably like little else out there at present. After the meandering lead in of "Dignity", "Focus" sets the tone for the rest of the EP as a loping beat gets decorated with ramshackle samples and melodies, while the vocal flow gets dragged through the electronic mincer to achieve an utterly delirious take on hip-hop paradigms. Everything is anchored by a pervading darkness, even when the melodies might try and be sweet as on "Walls", although the helium vocals might test you on "Ass Swung Low".
07 Aug 12
Review: The bright and vivid artwork accompanying this mini album from leftfield hip-hop instrumentalists Arca suggests that Stretch 2 will be equally bold and kaleidoscopic. Musically, it's certainly bold, delivering a series of short instrumentals and beatsy doodles that take the hip-hop template and twist it beyond all recognition. The beats are loose, the synths woozy and the vocal samples bizarre, giving the whole thing a dream-like feel (this is particularly true of the beautiful "Maiden Voyage", intoxicating "Meditation" and crystalline "Manners"). For the most part, it's an approach that handsomely pays dividends, offering a set that bristles with interesting ideas and even more interesting sounds.
16 Aug 11
Played by: Chris Coco
Review: It's certainly no rare thing to have a producer that straddles both the more experimental world of electronic music and the instant satisfaction of pop. The real challenge comes in finding someone who makes the combination of the two seem somehow effortless. As a newcomer to the sound of CFCF, it's hard to know what his legacy has foretold with an album and numerous EPs behind him, particularly for Paper Bag Records and more recently RVNG Intl. The lead track "Cometrue" warms to life on a melancholic but incredibly smooth piano hook. The beat comes in with a minimum of fuss; a conserved 2-step funk at an easy pace, while the yearning vocal hook comes not from an old R&B record but rather something more romantic. "Looking So" on the flip has the same downbeat qualities; once again the beat ticks away dutifully in the background while the considered melodies do their work. D'eon's remix of "Cometrue" is a nice surprise, bouncing to life on the kind of chimes that early electronica in the vein of The Black Dog made such great use of. The primitive techno percussion accentuates this feeling even more, creating a rather divine slice of ambience, inducing the kind of glassy-eyed reverie that a good ambient track should.
11 Dec 12
Review: Having already been responsible for some of the rowdiest breakbeat house joints on the WNCL Recordings imprint, Don Froth makes his UNO debut proper with the aptly named REflex EP. With British producers like Blawan and Randomer pushing a similarly heavy productions, Froth provides a counterpart to their sound, one that looks to Detroit and Chicago for inspiration rather than slavishly trying to emulate the buzz artists of now. The title track throws 303s and 909s together into a package that may have retro elements but feels defiantly modern, while "Vap" combines furious sidechained synths with jackhammer percussion. "Tunnelvision" and "Untitled B" meanwhile both achieve the feat of combining dub techno elements with loose, hip-inspired beats, creating something of a fresh, modern take on hip-house. Given Froth's engagement with classic US styles, the decision to tap up "Shake" Shakir for a remix of the title track that sounds even more futuristic and tweaked out than the original - highly recommended stuff.
18 May 12
Review: Perhaps better known to most as Tri Angle artist Ayshay, Fatima Al Qadiri's EP of skittery, steel drum-led beats and bass was an undersung highlight of New York based label UNO last year. Here it gets the remix treatment - and we're not lying when we say some of the global bass scene's biggest names have gotten involved. Night Slugs fam Girl Unit and Kingdom, Hyperdub's Ikonika, Fade to Mind's Nguzunguzu, Dubbel Dutch and footwork titan DJ Rashad all get involved, and the results are pretty spectacular. Girl Unit's take on "How Can I Resist" you is like hyperkinetic club music put into an echo chamber, DJ Rashad's remix is spindly and rickety, Kingdom turns in a fantastic cut that riffs on 80s electro but perhaps the most striking is Ikonika's dark, rumbling rework of "D-Medley" which sounds like nothing else.
05 Jun 12
Played by: Chris Coco
08 Sep 12
Played by: Juno Recommends Leftfield
Review: After impressing with the Cocoon EP earlier in the year, Fur returns to UNO for an EP that springs off from the detailed and textured house and techno he was forming into a much bolder sound world characterised by a kitchen sink approach but also keenly honed into something truly enjoyable to listen to. Grooves do crop up, clattering along from an embarrassment of found sounds, but they're balanced out by moments of wonderful plaintive musicality, abstract insanity and all kinds of impulsive goodness in between. "Reverie" seems to nail this feeling the best in one whole track, calling to mind the glitch leanings of Jan Jelinek in the process.
26 Jun 12
Review: Fast defining their place as a go-to label in the realms of experimental 4/4, Uno serve up yet another hitherto unknown quantity in the shape of Gobby. On the first two tracks this fledgling producer displays a real knack for making thoroughly strange music also innately funky. "Viewing HRS (Zzz)" is especially hooky even as micro-samples and wonky melodies try their best to throw the groove off course. "Blankface ATM" sees things getting weirder as electro techno (after a fashion) gets degraded and dissected, before "/U\" ploughs into a nightmarish vision of anchorless, darkside rhythm and noise.
28 Jun 11
UK Funky/UK Garage
16 Oct 12
Review: After making a sizable splash with a debut release on Uno, Kuhrye-oo gets the remix treatment for the anthemic vocal cut that markedly stood out on that first EP. He kicks off with his own re-version, running off a quickened broken beat and lashings of tense synth and piano that refuses to budge in its forwards momentum. Boody and Le1f get in on the remix action with a twisted deployment of vocodered lyrical flow over a subtly grinding beat, while Eon Kallisit opts instead for a hyper-garage meltdown that gets more delirious as it progresses. There's plenty of ideas bouncing around with typical Uno diversity from all involved in this sturdy collection, not least for those loving contemporary hybrid beats.
01 May 12
Played by: Juno Recommends Leftfield
Review: A steady player in Grimes' backing band, as well as a member of Born Gold, Canadian Calvin McElroy uses his Kuhrye-oo alias on this excellent new EP for UNO. The knowingly awkward spiralling arpeggios of "Human Rights" make for an exhilarating start as it leads into footwerkin' 808 hits and creeping textures, while "Give In (For The Fame)" is a straighter trail through broken acapellas with a more fleshed-out set of modern 2-step beats. As well as chilly delights of "Untitled" and "Temple", Brick Bandits' Nadus smoothes out "Human Rights" for a mix that's more of a tasteful edit than a full-on overhaul.
21 May 13
15 May 12
02 Oct 12
Review: Uno Records drop some SFV Acid into their catalogue! With only a limited number of releases under his belt, SFV has already solidified his hard-hitting, 'jack' sound and this latest release for Uno cuts straight to the core, leaving no room for dawdling. "Ashland Slumber" is a seductively lazy acid techno track, while "Seaside Cruisin Tribe" explores grander, electro territories making it a sort of Legoweltian-inspired number. The two versions of "As Is", though notably different in sound, both tell their own stories; with the former further exploring the possibilities of the 303 and the latter adopting a more deep house feel. Finally, "Bean Criteria" adopts a playful tone, with a soothing melody oscillating above short bursts of acid-trinkles masquerading as bass lines.