Review: Said to be inspired by science-fiction writer Ursula K. Le Guin - Alberta Balsam presents her debut album Higher Dreams for Dekmantel. A narrative-based listening session also designed for the dancefloor, the LP tells the story of a quest for survival and a planet ravaged by ecological collapse and environmental apocalypse. With that said, this is by far a draconian listen of gothic doom and swathes of cheap reverb - but a colourful and melodic session of pumping synth-music and electro references taking both Drexciya and Delia Derbyshire. Get your kicks from "Atuan Tombs", "Metanoia" and "Cascade" next to Alberta Balsam's own vocals in the title track and some hardcroe Detroit flair in "Suspended In The Manifold". A deep and beautiful debut that should be enjoyed and explored in its entirety.
Review: Primo Dutch streetwear store Patta and choice selectors Dekmantel hook up once more for their 2021 collection, bringing the world of positive chance the opportunity to delve through a new range of wardrobes, prints, catch phrases and accessories. On the music side of things, this year's collection commissions the likes of Nous'klaer recording artist Nadia Struiwigh with a blustery epic "PIEEC" that finds its place in association with Mary Lake's familiar synth trope "Back From Crete". DJ Corridor fills in the middle section with a lo-fi jungle explosion of warehouse IDM, electro and leftfield house next to Alberta Balsam's very synthy and tonal "Pyramids". Cinnaman makes an appearance with a lo-fi rhythm section plus touches of acid in "Duck", while the artist Jasmin turns it up with experimental and broken beat driven "Purl Stitch Knitting". Introducing Nathan Kofi with an extra expressive synth tip, Unknown To The Unknown affiliate Naone goes low, industrial and electro on "Beamd".