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17 Jun 13
17 Jun 13
14 Jun 13
Review: The original enfant terrible of the bass music world is back with a new album, marking his second long player for 4AD with a sprawling opus of more than 30 skits and skirmishes daubed in his trademark colourful sonic scrawl. There is plenty here that reminds you of the early days of the producer's emergence when dubstep was a younger beast, from the spacious "Horrid" to the measured arpeggios of "Pray For Me", but you'll also find more intricate musings such as the dynamic and dramatic "Memories". Hype abounds on the creepy Funky of "VI-XI", while "Overdose" launches enthusiastically into a jungle tear out. At any given turn, you'll find yourself surprised, lurched from a serene mood into a manic one, only to be tempered again. There's a staggering range of ideas and styles to comprehend here, but would you want it any other way from one of electronic music's most outspoken upstarts?
07 Jun 13
Played by: Anja Schneider
Review: Stimming returns to his hometown Dynamic after a ludicrous string of EPs in the last few tears, this time in the form of an LP. The guy is simply a deep house don, and his tracks share an uncanny similarity with many of the great US producers who so boldly identified the genre over twenty years ago. "The Origin" starts things off with a puritan house flex but the LP gradually moves on to more unstable and unexpected territories such as on the piano solo that is "Cherry Bud"; the neo-Detroitian vibes of "Die Machtigen"; or even the UK bass laden swirl of "When I'm Drunk" - a piece that is sure to cause some serious damage on the floor.
31 Jan 13
Review: Trust Maurice Fulton to surprise us. Having seemingly abandoned his Syclops pseudonym following the critical and commercial success of the superb 2008 full-length, I've Got My Eye On You, he's resurrected it for a surprise sophomore album. Predictably, A Blink of An Eye is a bit good. Picking up where the previous album left off, it delivers a warped fusion of titanium-plated electronics, leftfield acid jack, freestyle jazz flourishes and intergalactic mutant disco. Formidably twisted but hugely enjoyable, it gleefully charges off in many different directions, mixing shirts-off anthems (see the brilliant "Sarah's E with Extra P"), with curious percussion jams (the afro-centric "Jump Bugs") and curiously blissful, Boof-ish excursions ("5 In"). Stellar stuff.
14 Jun 13
Played by: Santero
Review: Prolific Monkeytown resident Siriusmo makes a welcome return to Modeselektor's patch after the widespread success of his 2011 LP Mosaik. The same love for full-bodied electro synths abounds, played out with that playful energy and a knack for combining a sense of humour with serious studio skills. Just look at the Daft Punk baiting disco funk of "Congratulator" for proof of how Siriusmo can easily straddle the sublime and the silly, or get twisted up to the delirious ghetto swagger of "Cornerboy". Whenever you need a breath of fresh air and a little fun in your ears, you can always turn to Siriusmo to blow away those tedious notions of serious mood pieces and drop some dirty ass beats.
27 May 13
Review: Following up the runaway success of Crooks & Lovers was always going to be a daunting task for Mount Kimbie, and they've wisely taken their time to come back with a step forwards from a sound which gave rise to the more folky strains of the dubstep aftermath. Sounding fresh and invigorated on their LP for Warp, Kai Campos and Dominic Maker have built on their love of shoegaze indie and brought their component parts into a clearer vision where they used to hide them behind heavy editing and microsampling. There are plenty of reminders that this is a Kimbie record, not least in the winsome melodies that shape the LP, but the duo have succeeded in shearing away their self-conscious trickery to write full-bodied songs that hit on first listen, rather than ten spins down the line.
07 Jun 13
Review: Having had success with some killer electro-boogie influenced singles, Australian producer Inkswel now rolls out this eight-track mini-LP. There's no old tracks featured here and its makes sense as the 80s boogie influences have largely given way to a darker, more warped and frankly more interesting take on things. Tracks like "Australiaborialis", "Circle Jerks" and "Stardusted" are just messed up, slo-mo loops with off-kilter hip-hop grooves. Totally weird and totally brilliant!
10 Jun 13
Review: Sit back and ready yourself for an EP that's not so much electronica as sonic storytelling. Amidst a backdrop of howling empty space, cold atmospherics and stark sound effects, each track from this ambitious collection maintains a level of theatrics not often heard in the electronic music world. Simply given file numbers, each moment of sharp percussion and clinically clean production blends into a complete description of otherworldly menace, intrigue and panic. Deep pools of bass weigh down the creaking sway of a fragmented top end, adding boundless space to the more cinematic pieces such as "Alien Transmission File #3" and "#4". A darkly enthralling body of work which rewards imagination with terrifying musical imagery.
24 Apr 13
Review: Zero confirms what this writer had long thought about Subjected: he inhabits a world where darkness reigns. Indeed, the tone on Zero is predominantly bleak; from the white noise of "M" and the slowed down, scraping rhythm of "Vx800" to the hammering drums and slamming rhythm of "Tool 1", the wild analogue yelps of "SD 1" and the searing bass and stepping rhythm of "Vault 101", the album is not designed to chill out at home to. But that doesn't mean it is throwaway or disposable, and alone the epic chord builds and sheet metal percussion of "Concept 3" is more powerful than a warehouse full of drone albums.
06 May 13
Review: Returning to Nicolas Jaar's Clown And Sunset stable after his debut in 2011, Valentin Stip is delving into more of his folky electronica with excellent results. "Wit(z)" floats suspended in a murk of melancholic elements before a more discernable rhythm cuts through to bring the track into focus. "Hiathaikm" is a more low-slung affair that revels in mournful keys and a delicate beat, while "Angst" is a bold study of reverbs and the vocals that fuel them. Across the whole release, introspection is the driving force, reaching for a rich spread of instrumentation and sound sources through which to weave a sad but engaging tale.
03 Jun 13
Played by: Chris Coco
13 May 13
Review: Making for a matching with hard-to-imagine results, Mala gets the remix treatment from James Blake in his Harmonimix guise and issues it forth on his own Deep Medi imprint. It's a bold treatment from Blake, who teases the track to life on a twee arrangement of music box chimes and tones, while a central vocal coos out the dominant melody. There's a mid-section with the only discernible slither of beat which sounds like familiar Blake territory, not least through the bluesy keys vibe that it carries. However, it's the monolithic brass-aping clarion call which comes steaming in to steal the show, trumping out its orders in a suitably epic fashion which is nothing if not rousing.
HIPPIE DANCE 04 CD
19 Nov 12
Review: Since first popping up in 2009, Rebolledo and Aksel Schuaffer's Pachanga Boys project has attracted a lot of attention. Given the curious contents of this in turns zany, inspired and downright odd debut album, it's easy to see why. Split between silly skits featuring tongue-in-cheek female spoken word vocals and fully formed tracks, it's like a stripped back South American/German take on the formidably over the top musings of Mungolian Jetset. By and large, the rhythms are sparse but heavy, featuring fuzzy basslines, distorted drum machine grooves and curious electronic pulses. It's good fun, sitting somewhere between bonkers electronica, wonky house and camp leftfield silliness. Throughout, it's bursting with weird and wonderful ideas.
10 Jun 13
26 Jan 10
07 Feb 11
27 Jul 95
Played by: Downtempo/Experimental
28 Jun 10
24 Aug 12
20 Mar 12
Review: After a steady arc of development from his debut Oneric to last year's The Dissolve, Barry 'Boxcutter' Lynn switches guises for this new album on his usual haunt of Planet Mu. Moving away from the heavy-funk tones of his last album, there's something classicist at work on The Host; all grandiose chambers of sound full of soaring arpeggios, proggy guitar licks; live drums and ticker machines and battered 70s effects units messing with everything. If krautrock and electronica were to collide into each other and somehow meld into one, the chances are it would sound like this.
11 Jun 13
Review: When it comes to Gold Panda releases, you never quite know what you're going to get. On one hand, it might be skittish, wonky and unusual; on the other, it may be a rush-inducing blast of electronic positivity. By and large, this second album delivers lashings of the latter, with his trademark shimmering electronics, darting synths and pleasing melodies riding waves of floor-friendly rhythms. There's a pleasing percussive intensity about the sun-bright goodness of "Junk City II" and "Brazil", while jack-era Chi-town drums underpin the picturesque rural imagery of "An English House". It's these kinds of unusual but brilliant combinations that make Half of Where You Live a particularly potent set.
10 Jun 13
Played by: Kisk
05 Jan 13
Review: "Game & Performance" from Deux remains one of our favourite transmissions in the ever blossoming discography of Minimal Wave, and the duo of Gerard Pelletier and Cati Tete are clearly second only to fellow Lyon act In Aeternam Vale in Veronica Vasicka's affections when it comes to her personal favourite French exponents of 80s minimal synth. Having already released a Deux retrospective in 2010 entitled Decadence, the Brooklyn label now presents Golden Dreams, a four track EP of studio and demo tracks that Pelletier and Tete recorded from 1985 onwards. Typically all four tracks are previously unreleased and have been newly remastered for this release. Final track "Fam Fam" perhaps comes closest to recapturing the magic of "Game & Performances" stripped down minimal synth compositions and hushed vocal duets, but all four tracks will prove temptation personified to Minimal Wave regulars.
26 Nov 12
Played by: Jt86
Review: Raime inaugurated the Blackest Ever Black label, so it makes sense that the London duo should be the first artists on the label's ever growing roster to deliver a full album. Quarter Turns Over A Living Line finds Joe Andrews and Tom Halstead progressing from the sample based material of their early releases in favour of live instrumentation, though the elongated sessions spent "painstakingly piecing together" the hours of recorded music ensures their trademark eeriness and despondency remains intact. There's a boldness of vision apparent from the rumbling, recycled orchestrations of lead track "Passed Over Trail" that captures your attention and doesn't relent from there. "The Last Foundry" comes across like a funeral procession mourning the passing of Skull Disco, while "Exist In The Repeat Of Practice" brandishes the kind of foreboding stasis that was prevalent in much of Demdike Stare's Modern Love Tryptych of releases. A plinking digidub rhythm seems thrillingly incongruous amidst the enveloping sonic drudgery of "The Walker In Blast & Bottle", while Raime could feasibly soundtrack a spaghetti western set in Dante's Hell with "Your Cast Will Tire". Quarter Turns Over A Living Line makes for a quite brilliant body of work that demands your full attention and craves repeat listens.
10 Apr 12
Review: Blackest Ever Black have carved themselves an intriguing little niche with their array of releases to date, accruing attractive if decidedly bleak contributions from the likes of Regis, Tropic Of Cancer and Raime which differ in sound if not in tone. Now I'm Just A Number: Soundtracks 1994-95 is perhaps the London label's most ambitious work to date, presenting seven fully remastered tracks from Black Rain, the industrial project of NYC avant garde icon Stuart Argabright and Shinichi Shimokawa. All the tracks featured here originate from Black Rain being commissioned to provide music for both William Gibson's audio book adaptation of his seminal cyberpunk novel Neuromancer as well as Robert Longo's poorly conceived film Johnny Mnemonic. With their productions for the latter being cut from the finished film, the only chance prior to this release of hearing them was on the 1995 album 1.0. Fully remastered for your audio pleasure by Mat Colton at Air, the deeply dystopian nature of Black Rain's music will thrill those with more esoteric tastes and it's probably best left to the sound clips for you to get a full idea of the lurching, foreboding industrial nature.
20 May 13
Played by: Shadow Dancer
Review: Yorkshire natives, Warp legends and techno mavericks, The Black Dog return with one hell of a full-length on their own Dust Science Recordings - a firm, overwhelming presence on the dance-not-dance world since 2005. These guys have a long history of bleepy, wonky tones, starting from their first 12"s on Warp back in the mid-nineties and it's clear from this latest LP that they're showing no signs of stopping their incredible form. The 16 track album goes from the drone distortions of "Bolt No 6" to the gnarly, two-step muscle flex of "Atavistic Resurgence" and the sweet, watery deep house vibes on "Cult Mentality". Our personal favourites, however, have to be the off-kilter beat shredding on "Hymn For SoYo", the break-laden swirls of "Pray Crash I" and the sparse, echoing synth waves of "Internal Collapse" - the track itself being worthy of a full release. Sit back, unwind and let the many surprises of Tranklements take you on a ride...
04 Feb 13
Played by: DJ Nova (Rodon Fm 95), Flash Atkins, Juno Recommends Leftfield, Cosby (Car Crash Set), Jt86, Myles Serge, Tom Dicicco
Review: Lurching forth on Actress' Werk Discs label with an appropriately strange twist on standard house and techno maneuveurs, Moire appears swathed in mystery and proudly sporting the disregard for convention that has defined his label boss to this date. With Heidi Vogel sending in some vocals stored in a jar not quite big enough for them, lead track "Never Sleep" has the potential to become very large indeed. There's a bleak, spartan quality to the arrangement of rasping drums and head-nailing bass splats, while the rhythm keeps a reassuring looseness about itself. "Drugs" heads into equally uneasy territory, using fearsomely large bass notes and paranoia-inducing arpeggio sequences to feed into a malevolent brew of mind-annihilation. Not even the sweeter synth strings that come in can save the oppressive atmosphere from pulling you down. For the Actress heads out there, Mr Cunningham pulls out a remix of stuttering magnificence that keeps driving forward while allowing everything to crumble and reform as it goes.
20 May 13
26 Apr 13
Review: Friedman and Liebezeit are back with the fifth instalment of the Secret Rhythms series. It's all about gnarly percussion and sultry, ethnic harmonics with this pair, and "240-11" is one of those wacky drum arrangements that only these two can conjure. The same goes for the rest of the LP: "130-11" breaks its drum pattern entirely to create a jittery, heads-down number; "105-09" goes on a sort of middle-eastern hip-hop flex with its rattling percussion and mystical acoustics; whilst "120-12" certainly pays homage to the dub school at which these two have certainly studied and passed with flying colours. Another essential release from these two great minds - avoid at your peril...
02 Mar 09
03 Jun 13
Review: We've come accustomed to Kel McKeown's inventive approach to music making - think unusual rhythms, unusual synth sounds and left-of-centre melodies - but his productions still possess the power to surprise. There's plenty to raise a smile on Fourth: The Golden Eagle, his fifth full-length. Wonky beats pop and crackle, seasick chords woozily burst from the speakers (see the excellent "Nice Eyes in My Size"), and vintage synthesizer melodies slither forth like a drunken snake after too many pints of snakebite (sorry). The effect is both exciting and intoxicating. By the time bold closer "Answered" fades away, you'll be amazed by his seemingly effortless inventiveness.
05 Nov 12
Review: Bets known for his work with Allez Allez and Walls, Sam Willis goes it along on this LP for Half Machine. It's still swathed in melancholic tones and thick layers of melody, perhaps occupying a similar effervescent space to Daphni's recent album but expressed through less organic means. "Foxglissandro" hops along with an ever-building optimism, packed full of starlit arpeggios and rousing chords, while "Frozen/Circus" runs from its tech-house beginning to reach a far more psychedelic place. It's an album that matches accessibility with sharp ideas, adding more weight to the notion that dance music needn't always be moody.
12 Nov 12
Review: On the basis of the material FaltyDL has released with Ninja Tune thus far, his forthcoming third album Hardcourage should rank as one of the more interesting albums to surface in the first quarter of next year. Following the excellent throwback styles of "Hardcourage", the New Yorker showcases his seemingly endless palette of styles with "Straight & Narrow", a wonderfully colourful and vivid sounding production. Dominated by some deft vocal chopping, it's the way these cooing elements intertwine with the beguiling synth noodling and crisp almost handclap style beats that resonates deeply. Ballroom duo Mike Q and Divoli S'vere naturally latch onto the most obvious elements in the vocals and clapped beats, laying them atop a breathlessly frenetic rhythmic mainframe, Four Tet hogs the flip with a dewy eyed, slowly percolating seven minute remix that will tug at the heart strings of his legion of fans, while Gold Panda delivers a typically prismatic reworking that outdoes Hebden's effort in the melody stakes.
20 May 13
18 Feb 12
Played by: Chris Coco, Shadow Dancer, Eleven8, Deepchild, Dirt Crew, Alkalino, Night Tracks, Djs: Most Charted - Dubstep, Jesse Somfay, Liz-E, Alert, Slam Mode
Review: Given that his sound has now been referenced by countless imitators, it's testament to Burial's enduring appeal that the announcement of a new EP on a Sunday in February was enough to shake the online music press out of their collective stupor. As an EP it more than stands up to his previous work, and it may even be better than last year's Street Halo EP - where the brilliance of the title track left the EP quite top-heavy, there's no such complaints on Kindred. If UK garage was the touchpoint for his earlier releases, this EP sees Burial further developing a sound that has few obvious points of comparison, whether it's the savage, gnarled bassline of the title track, or the shambling house of "Loner", characterized by its hollowed out arpeggio and ambient crackle. But it's "Ashtray Wasp" that provides the most breathtaking moment, seeing the producer using the distinct musical language he's created and bringing confident melodic elements into play. Of course such descriptions seem trivial when trying to describe this EP - even for Burial it's far beyond what his peers and imitators could ever imagine making.
29 Apr 13
Played by: Cosby (Car Crash Set)
Review: Inspired by some time spent in Shanghai, the Hyperdub main man makes a long-awaited return with this no-messing two tracker that sees him venturing into ever more curious realms of rhythmic abstraction. "Xingfu Lu" shudders on a trap-like framework, sparse but heavy hitting all in the same breath. The melodies sport that oddly comforting sense of otherworldliness that has always characterised Steve Goodman's musicality even as the groove playfully fits and starts. "Kan" is a more feisty proposition, moving erratically between different motifs and getting even twitchier in the drums department while found sounds slip in between the miniscule cracks between the hats and snares. It's a bewildering effect that suggests interesting pastures new are in sight for Kode 9.
10 Jun 13
31 May 13