Review: Techno duo Cassegrain launched their Arcing Seas label - it's an anagram of their own artist name - back in 2016 but is only now making their ownership of it public. The pair's approach to music-making is similarly mysterious and enchanting and this three-tracker fuses detailed sound design with an understanding of dance floor requirements. On "Shahmaran" this takes shape through electronic pulses underpinning tranced out, hypnotic chords. "Caracal" is harder and more pared back and sees the pair drop grainy kicks and a coruscating rhythm, but the sense of mystery that pervades the label and their productions soon returns. "Vulpine" resounds to lithe, clicking percussion, a dense rolling groove and the occasional blast of white noise.
Review: The Greek-Lebanese power duo of hypnotic techno return for the third installment for their new Arcing Seas series and doing what they do best. However they've drafted some killer crew to remix tracks from their first release. First up Marc Trauner aka The Mover should need no introduction: his remix of "The Trappist" is a depth-charged/darkwave-electro nightmare if we've ever heard: it'd make The Hacker or The Horrorist up their game. The inimitable Peder Mannerfelt steps up to the challenge and delivers the goods as always on his pummelling modern industrial music workout on "Skullgun", while Avian head honcho Shifted does tunnelling minimalist techno aimed squarely at Berghain on "Vultures".
Review: Having previously showcased their off-kilter brand of dancefloor techno on a wide variety of imprints - M_Rec LTD, Prologue and Infrastructure New York included - Cassegrain recently decided to take hold of their destiny. This is their second single on the Arcing Seas label they founded earlier this year, and contains three full-body workouts in their usual style. "Stax Scarlett" sets the tone, peppering a thumping broken techno groove with dystopian guitar lines and creepy chords. "Vultures" sees them add rolling, dub techno style riffs to a shaker-driven peak-time groove, while "Local God" is pleasingly metallic in its ethos and construction.
Review: Greek-Anglo-Turk hypnotic techno kings Cassegrain inaugurate their new imprint Arcing Seas; an anagram of their name: get it? It's business as usual from Alex Tsiridis and Huseyin Evirgren and the inauguration of the label follows several acclaimed releases on the likes of Prologue and Infrastructure NYC. The title track powers away with relentless low-tom drums giving it most of the groove beneath a ringing melody. "Skull Gun" is stripped but effective DJ tool with its loopy repetition just begging to blended with another trance inducing track while "Trappist" is the peak time weapon on offer; with its tape delayed melody spitting about the place in hysterical fashion.
Review: Alex Tsiridis and Huseyin Evirgren are Cassegrain, and the duo's third missive comes through Max_M's M_Rec LTD, with their Painter-Palette EP. "Painter Of Modern Life" promotes a lightly trickled bassline, sparking industrial statics, juggled around Sandwell District styled blips. Ed Davenport steps up for what could be his finest work to date, dubbing down Cassegrain's original to deeper cut of underground techno - Davenport's trademark bottom end ensuring maximum club efficiency. On the (digital) flip Cassegrain present their most peak-time production yet with "Palette" - a devilish track, harbouring the muscle to satisfy DJ sets from Len Faki and Chris Liebing.
Review: The Killekill label rounds out a fine 2013 with another release from the deadly combination of Cassegrain and Tin Man. The trio first collaborated on the Berlin label with last year's Carnal EP which played out pretty much like you'd expect a record from Cassegrain and Tin Man to sound. The High & Low EP demonstrates the threesome remain on a production wavelength, with three tracks where Tin Man's mastery of acid lines align perfectly with the modern techno sound design of Cassegrain. The title track holds it down first, using the full ten minute duration to unfurl into a slowly swelling minimalistic acid epic, whilst "Sex Kit" demonstrates they can take it to the dancefloor, albeit a dancefloor well versed in acid tracks with slightly unnerving undercurrents, Final track "Sand Maze" floats through a soundscape of subtle, minimalist acid ambience with only the slightest hint of a kick.
Review: With recent releases on Prologue and Soul Aid to his name, Berlin-based techno producer Cassegrain turns up on Killekill, this time with the equally mysterious Tin Man in tow. There are echoes of his dub techno explorations in all four tracks here, but the dominant sound is acid tweakery. It's put to particularly good effect on the droning "Visitor" - a stoned dub techno/acid house fusion - and lead track "Carnal", which bumps to a club techno beats and jacks to the bubbling sound of 303 abuse. "Sear" simply clatters along on a wave of analogue percussion, while "Rest" goes decidedly deeper and dubbier.
Review: It seems Function is a fan of Cassegrain & Tin man material as he's just signed them up for his next release on Infrastructure New York. For this second Berghain 07 sampler, Function's appetite for boomy, acid techno is whetted by the collaboration's "Oxide". Meanwhile, former flatmate Ed Davenport, aka Inland, delivers "Sca Fell", a subaqueous workout that would get the Mike Parker seal of approval. DVS1 throws down some trademark warehouse beats with some caustic stabs to boot, while Steve Bicknell delves even deeper into the abyss than he did on the first sampler, with a track that's as menacing and frenetic as what Drexciya can be.
Review: Efdemin's 2008 mix CD on Curle, Carry On - Pretend We're Not In The Room showed that he was as adept and inventive behind the decks as he was in the studio. A decade later, the same holds true for the follow-up mix, Naif, but this time the boundaries are more blurred. Consisting of 29 unreleased tracks - 10 from the German producer himself and 19 from like-minded artists - the selection runs the gamut, from the hazy, abstract tones of WaWuWe's "Beams" and DIN's noisy "Glide", into hypnotic dance floor techno such as "Laveline", Efdemin's bleep-y collaboration with Konrad Springer, the glorious mid-tempo minimal roller "Watte" - recorded as Sollmann & Gurtler and then 'versioned' by Efdemin and expansive dub tracks from Pom Pom and Marco Shuttle.
Review: According to Infrastructure NYC head Function, this compilation was compiled like an album and involves not only the core group of artists but also connects the dots between the label's past, his Berghain 07 mix CD for Ostgut Ton, the legendary Sandwell District days and the respective history of the artists. Infrastructure Facticity spans "a narrative ranging from lush, ambient electronics and post-club diversions, to contemporary club techno and back again." British artist Robert McNally provides the artwork and musically the highlights are not so much the dancefloor ready bangers, which are mainly quite good, rather the moments of restraint such as Vatican Shadow's brooding and almost Boards Of Canada sounding "Swords Over Paradise", the slow burning reduced acid of Cassegrain & Tin Man's "Open Sea" and Rrose's finest moment yet, "Cephalon", which can barely be described in words!
Review: Slap me sideways and call me Grandpa, it's a new instalment of Killekill's Megahits series, and that means a burst of noxious techno beats from all angles. As with previous editions, we have 6 sides of wax all filled with new killers from the label's best, including Eomac, who delivers the supremely messed-up "Angel In The Marble", Bintus' nasty-as-ever acid on "Re-Clocking Knob", a gorgeous collaborative efforts from Cassegrain and Tin Man dubbed "Ad Hoc", Alex Cortex's unsurprisingly curious and marvellous "Tensegrity", and a very special appearance from Detroit legend Blake Baxter with the banging "Acid Warp Time Travel". The rest if as good, if not better - pure gold from the likes of Dez Williams, Jerome Hill, Detroit Grand Pubahs etc.
Bersarin Quartett - "Mehr Als Alles Andere" - (5:47)
Pole - "Wipfel Dub" - (4:05)
Cassegrain - "Serpent" - (5:10)
Perc - "Kord" - (5:48)
Alex Smoke - "LiveOn" - (6:02)
Swarm Intelligence - "Shatter" - (5:10)
Tim Exile - "It's Dark In Here But I Still Love You" (live & improvised at Krake Festival 2012) - (4:39)
Lakker - "Darcdub" - (5:11)
Goner - "Enka" - (5:55)
Kid606 - "Juju Voodoo" - (1:51)
Ulrich Schnauss - "A Long Way To Fall" (live at Krake Festival 2012) - (4:25)
Dadub - "Syncronic Pattern" (live at Krake Festival 2012) - (6:12)
SHRUBBN!! - "Echos 3|4" - (2:18)
Barker - "Marston Vale" - (2:25)
Review: Killekill associated imprint Krake have got something pretty special for their debut release - a diverse and fulfilling compilation of some of the most interesting electronic artists of the moment, ranging from techno to IDM and beyond. This is one for you to check out piece by piece but we thought we'd pick out a few tasty ones to get your juices flowing: Pole makes a rare appearance with the beautiful, dubbed-out half-steps of "Wipfel Dub", Cassegrain's "Serpent" is a fast-winding, semi-techno banger complete with one of the nastiest basslines since Surgeon's "Krautrock"; meanwhile Perc comes in with his pulsating techno camaraderie and Lakker's "Darcdub" is just militantly insane. All in all, a fantastic, wide-ranging compilation of new material from some of the darkest minds out there - check the other, lesser known faces too. We're certainly looking forward to the next chapter of Krake...
Review: In its original form, Killekill was a party that embraced all sorts of electronic music, and the label has opted for the same approach. It doesn't seem to bother Nico who runs Killekill - he previously worked for Shitkatapult - that the imprint's first steps have displayed an almost schizophrenic disregard for the kind of micro-genres that defines electronic music. In fact, like Svreca from Semantica and Micky who runs [Naked Lunch], he seems far more interested in what constitutes a great tune, irrespective if its tempo is 100bpm or 160bpm and regardless of whether it was fashioned in downtown Detroit or a windswept Dublin suburb. Following the wild techno of Alex Cortex's Raw, comes Megahits, a three-installment vinyl release that sums up this approach. It begins almost innocuously, with Bill Youngman's "The 2", a downtempo, jazzy piece that suddenly veers into rude boy half-paced jungle bass. Despite being a Berlin label, UK culture is represented again with the curious blend of ragga vocalsand twitchy acid lines on Affie Yussuf's "Onna Roll", while Radioactive Man serves up his typically party-friendly electro, replete with tonal bass licks on "Addict" and Neil Landstrumm returns to techno territory - albeit a less distorted, noisy one - on the dark, ravey bass of "On The Pussers". There are also nods to contemporary European techno - the most notable being the grainy, dense rhythms and searing acid of Cassegrain and Tin Man'scollaboration - US producers are represented with the murky jack of JTC's "Crush Arbor" and the frightening synths, predatory bass - which has echoes of Suburban Knight - and hyperactive rhythms of DJ Stingray's "Ego Assault". Killekill also proves itself again to be home to the outsider, featuring the punishing beats and menacing synths of Lakker's Autechre-eqsue "Darcdub" and the spectacularly depraved "Furfriend", a stripped back groove powered by a bombastic bassline and featuring a deadpan pervert talking about taking drugs and how he likes to come on people's faces with his "fat cock". Electronic music may have become a smaller place thanks to technology,but as Megahits shows, Killekill's world remains as colourful and occasionally disturbing as an LSD-drenched peek through a kaleidoscope.