Review: Installing a new set of artists into its roster is the Infine label with a remix EP of the Glassforms album that Bruce Brubaker & Max Cooper released last year. Headlined by the likes of Donato Dozzy and Laurel Halo, there's also a shorter edit of the album's epic halfway track "Two Pages", and additional to that there's the experimental noise version by Tehranian producer Tegh. Daniele Di Gregorio leads the way with Dozzy in a piano variation of "Two Pages" while Laurel Halo takes on the sustained chords and epic strings of the original album's closing track, "Opening". Get your more traditional version from the Glassforms edit.
Review: Celebrating its tenth anniversary, the De:tuned label digs deep into the world of 90s ambient to mark the occasion with three sublime cuts. "Every Now And Then", courtesy of Thomas Fehlmann's Sun Electric project, is a wispy, ethereal affair, while on "Shift", the brilliant - and often overlooked - Higher Intelligence Agency deliver a glorious slice of acid-soaked electro. It's the kind of track that inspired the current penchant for the glitchy end of electronic music. However, the real highlight here is Deepchord's "Garden". Led by breathy, textured synths and a gentle, rolling groove, it's the definition of deep music for the head and feet.
Review: Given that Warp Records has described this set from ambient legend Brian Eno as "almost as much musical novel, as a traditional album", it's perhaps fitting that this limited edition comes housed in a hardback book. The album's narrative unfurls slowly across the album's four tracks, picking up pace during the 26-minute "Fickle Sun" suite of tracks. Predictably, it's all hugely atmospheric and attractive, featuring a mix of dreamy electronics, twinkling pianos, poetic spoken word extracts and, according to Eno's own notes, "three-dimensional recording techniques". Perhaps most intriguing of all, though, is closer "Fickle Sun I'm Set Free", which sees Eno paying tribute to the hazy, psychedelic pop of Harry Nilsson.
Review: There is now way that we're gonna sit here and tell you who Brian Eno is. If we did that, it would mean that we were not serious about what we do. We apologise in advance, but if you don't know who he is, then get yourself on Wikipedia and start reading! The British electronic pioneer - and veteran - is showing no signs of stopping in the second half of his career, and this new EP for London's mighty Warp is as refreshing as the very first time we heard his ambient textures. Named Reflection, this four-part release will no doubt blow you away and carry you over the clouds; it's a listening experience, and it doesn't get better than this. Mood music for the mood generation! Trust us, ENO still has it on lockdown...
Review: "Phantom Brickworks III" is the lead single from Bibio's new album and it is a haunting yet evocative neo-classical experience. Fans of Erased Tapes, Nils Frahm or Olafur Arnalds should take note. On the album, the artist has stated that he doesn't believe in ghosts, but in places haunted by meaning. Places can change for a variety of reasons, he says, and are charged with atmosphere because of what they have been through or what they have been. Deep and intriguing stuff! Moreover, it is a collection of mostly improvised musical pieces that for some time have provided him with a 'mental portal' into places and times that are somewhere between illusion and reality. Bibio is the alias of Stephen Wilkinson from the West Midlands: Phantom Brickworks is his sixth album on UK electronica institution Warp, based in Sheffield, UK.
Review: One year on from his full length release for Sheffield institution Warp, Bibio - the alias of Stephen Wilkinson from the West Midlands - returns to the dreamlike environments evoked in the original LP. Phantom Brickworks "IV" and "V" are more haunting yet evocative neo-classical experiences; a couple of long winding and introspective pieces that are at the same time bittersweet and hopeful. Warp have hyped Wikinson's forthcoming new material coming in 2019.
Review: Mythical UK duo The Orb return after a year of silence, and they do so with their usual elegance and mystique. Kompakt is the imprint to welcome them back, a label to which they are now residents after years of releases on its catalogue. While the duo is primarily associated to beat-centric electronica and pseudo techno, their recent sound is sparse and exploratory, crossing the lines between drone and downtempo with utter ease. COW/Chill Out, World! is a journey in every sense of the word; the album goes from a selection of cinematic drone and deep ambience, to glitchy, distorted shades of power electronics. Moreover, this is a piece of extended music that truly works perfectly as one whole unit of music, from start to finish. In fact, we think it's the best thing these legends have put out in a while, and it makes us think that they'v never really been away, just preparing to deliver their very best. Recommended!
Review: It's so impressive to see that The Orb have managed to reinvent themselves so many times, over so many years. The legendary UK outfit is now comprised of original founder Alex Paterson and long-time Kompakt member Thomas Fehlmann. The former has been involved in the project since the late 80s, while that latter has been heavily involved in the then-called 'rave' scene from about the same time, so we're talking about true veterans here. They struck up a relationship with the aforementioned Kompakt over recent years, and their latest COW / Chill Out, World! album was a brilliantly constructed work of pure ambient delight. Here, we have an artillery of remixers to inject some beats into the original mixes, starting with Alex Willner aka The Field in what is a classic Kompakt reinterpretation of "9 Elms Over River Eno", followed by Dave DK's own tech-friendly version of "4am Exhale". Veteran Jorg Burger's remix of "5th Dimensions" unleashes a kinetic flow across the sparse planes of the original cut, and minimal techno pioneer Leandro Fresco has his say on "Wireless". It's a Kompakt family affair...