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11 Mar 13
Played by: Paul Mac, Spec., Alkalino, Juno Recommends Techno, Simonlebon, Menorah, Resident Advisor, Cosby (Car Crash Set), Larssen, Jt86, Eats Everything, Dapayk Solo
Review: The Boddika-helmed Nonplus unveil Think & Change, the label's first compilation and what a way to mark such an event. Calling on a cast of the great and the good of contemporary techno and bass music, Think & Change arrives sporting some thirteen tracks, a statement of how far Nonplus has come since its emergence in 2009 as an outlet for the Autonomic family of artists, gradually mutating into a more wide ranging approach, with material from Actress, Kassem Mosse and Basic Soul Unit ensuring a reputation as one of the most respected labels in the bass music diaspora. The highlights on this compilation are many, but you should be checking Four Tet's contribution "For These Times" (easily his best, least fussy club track to date) "Bad Chicago" from Martyn, and Kassem Mosse's excellent "Broken Patterns".
06 May 13
Review: Tom Rowlands is the spectacle-wearing-half of the Chemical Brothers and he debuts his solo work on Erol Alkan's Phantasy Sound. Rowlands merges new school styles of throbbing and jacked-up house - replete with marching snares, curdling cow bells and cut vocals - with powerful stylings of EBM. Pitch that against a synthesiser that sounds like its being hung, drawn and quartered and you have Rowlands' title track "Through Me". Meanwhile, the chainsaw synth of "Nothing But Pleasure" dominates the track, which builds into a druggy drop made for party-harder dancers moshing like they were at a Rage Against The Machine or Justice concert - harking back to the days when French electro labels Institubes and Ed Banger ruled.
10 May 13
Review: The ever-correct Prime Numbers series is still going strong, this time bringing together a thoroughly eclectic range of producers to lay down some solid club fodder. Adesse adopts the tenderest approach, bringing a soft African lilt to a subtle arrangement of light drums and poignant chords. Truss is certainly in no mood to chill on "Redbrook", going for a big room techno flavour that favours rigid beats, acid parps and epic swathes of organ. Massimo Di Lena is on a far more twitchy tip, with a snagging assortment of percussion and some woozy synths that leave one feeling wonderfully dizzy.
26 Apr 13
Review: Although it has only one release to its name - Happa's Beat Of The Drum - London club night turned record label Church is looking to be an imprint to keep close tabs on, especially on the strength of this second EP, from young London producer Rumah. Although his debut from last year demonstrated an atmospheric, syncopated style of bass music, "Stutter" shows a marked progression into swung techno styles, with a weighty track full of concrete rhythms and glassy synths; "Murmur" is similarly powerful, throwing acid flecks and sunken vocals into the mix. Meanwhile, Apes & Seb Wildblood offer their own take on "Stutter", tempering some of the original's more ferocious attributes with some subtle dub techno elements, while James Fox refixes "Murmur" into a slinky, mid-tempo house groover, whose swelling synths offer something considerably deeper.
14 May 13
Played by: Paul Hazendonk
17 May 13
Played by: Sccucci Manucci
Review: Having made his debut on Prime Numbers earlier this year with his titular contribution to a split release alongside Truss and Massimo De Lena, Adesse is granted a full release with this all killer no filler Untitled Love EP. For someone who came to the fore with a version of Theo Parrish's "Sky Walking, it's unsurprising that the title track here has a rugged charm reminiscent of the outspoken Sound Signature boss - it's all about that thumping snare son! Meanwhile "Supernal" veers into deep steppers territory and contains some ingenious looping of a Laurie Anderson standard, whilst "Metachemistry" highlights Adesse's talent for loose, freeform arrangements.
06 May 13
24 Apr 13
Played by: Juno Recommends Minimal/Tech House, Sean Danke, Resident Advisor, Timo Maas, Troy Pierce, DJ Hell, 2000 And One
Review: Richie Hawtin's label has long been associated with the minimal sound, but this release frees itself from that sound. The title track is stripped back, but it serves up a new take on classic electro thanks to its shuffling 808s and woozy, reflective synths. Tale of Us return to a more conventional approach on "Discochord" but they still avoid hiccupping mnml sounds and the squelchy acid line is accompanied by atmospheric synths. Finally, "Lost City" is more grimy and nocturnal, but again the menacing 808s and reflective synths make it sound a million miles away from the label's trademark sound.
17 May 13
Review: In the shift from minimal to deep house there were always going to be winners and losers, and it sounds like Carsten Aermes aka Phon O ended up on the right side. On Schn33, there are echoes of his minimal past, as loose drums form the basis for the title track, but the German producer is in a different place thanks to the use of building chords, icy synth lines and the sweetest strings this side of Derrick May. "Go" is also indicative of his shift towards deeper climes, but the repetitive vocal sample intoning the track title, coupled with billowing chords mean it is a more tracky, toolish affair
03 May 13
Review: Next month sees Freerange boss Jimpster return to the album game with Porchlight and Rocking Chairs, this release acts as a neat teaser for what to expect. Lead track "Rollergirl" pumps in arpeggio like a night drive scene from a '80s music video clip, while breathy male vocals whisper in the tracks background. It's a melodic piece fuelled by muted tension and soft aggression. Accompanying it is "Hold My Hand", a track featuring all the Jimpster trimmings; deep piano chords, spoken word vocals, chromatic synth loops and soft, yet thumpy drums.