Review: 139 is the first release this year by Spectral, the house/techno offshoot of Ghostly International. It shows that despite the passage of nearly two decades, the US imprint is still relevant. Starting with the wild acid of Gunnar Haslam's "Versione Antica", the label takes the listener on a journey that includes the murky hardware techno of Minimal Violence's "Travel By Night" and Matrixxman teaming up with Riccardo Limiti to deliver the stomping "Inferno". Other highlights include the noisy, Chicago jack and eerie tones of Russell EL Butler's "Run Away With My Heart" and D'Marc Cantu's resonant "Regular People". It's testament to the label's approach that after nearly twenty years in business, it can still put together such an inspirational release.
Various - "DJ-Kicks" (Continous mix) - (49:34) 133 BPM
Review: When they were asked to put together the latest volume in the "DJ Kicks" series, Mount Kimbie boys Dominic Maker and Kai Campos drew influence from a recent six-date run supporting Actress. As a result, the 22 tracks they have chosen - here presented in DJ friendly, unmixed form - tend towards the experimental and off-kilter, touching on a myriad of styles (ambient, industrial-era experimentalism, South American influenced tropical drum jams, spacey modular techno, raw-edged peak-time jams, mind-altering acid weirdness and intergalactic electro all feature) in the process. Highlights are naturally plentiful, from the hypnotic dancefloor intensity of Stanislav Tolkachev and bleeping body-jack of A Sagittariun, to the skewed warmth of Severed Heads and the dream-like weirdness of their own exclusive contribution, "Southgate".