Review: The legendary John Beltran returns with another masterpiece on Delsin. A master producer whose career has spanned everything from Detroit techno and electronica to Latin music, his attempt at ambient is equally well executed. The breath taking "Music for Machines" with its droning mechanical soundscape and beautiful transcending strings. "Orange Background" and its factory sounds accompanying a repetitive resonance. Beltran's emotive and sombre piano sound plays a large part and he does it tremendously on "Many Moments to Come" as well as the memorable "Love Suspended". All in all a brilliant effort and contender for one of the finest albums this year.
Review: Following its initial release in 2006, John Beltran's Human Engine LP enjoys a proper digital release on Exceptional to reach out to contemporary listeners with his pastoral shades of shoegazing electronica. There's a lot of ground covered, from the live drums and languid guitars of "A Mind Blows Everyday" to the New Age techno chimes of "That Day In Monterey", but the constant remains Beltran's knack for ethereal atmospherics. There are some more energetic moments, such as the synth-pop leaning "Here & Now", while the many shorter vignettes broaden the palette of the record, but this is essentially a collection for those that like to recline.
Nephila's Oneiric (Svens Glorify Tribute mix To John Beltran) - (9:15) 120 BPM
Review: An interesting pair of remixes on this release, which sees two big producers reinterpreting seminal material from legendary ambient techno producer John Beltran. Kassem Mosse & Mip Mup collaborate on a rework of "Brilliant Flood", adding deep bass and a bumping drum machine workout over the top whilst maintaining the hazy, hypnotic quality of the original. It adds a rough, lo-fi quality that is sure to appeal to fans of Mosse's other productions. Sven Weisemann's remix is a completely different prospect, turning in a nine-minute reworking of several different Beltran productions, which is pitched somewhere between ambient and techno, and even displays a leaning towards modern classical. Not one for the dancefloor necessarily, but sublime listening nonetheless.
Review: Dutch label Delsin's 100th release celebrations continue, albeit in a typically understated fashion, on this fifth instalment. BNJMN's beautiful but brief opener "Dive" sets the scene for the release as does the dreamy but serene "Radio's Mutterings" by Herva. While the pace picks up on Delta Funktionen's "Petrol", a fusion of robust broken beats and dreamy chords, the overall tone here is mellow and melodic. This is audible on Bleak's "Keep Me Close", where dubbed out drums and a trancey bass prevail, and on the standout track from John Beltran. The US producer may be known primarily for his home-listening sounds, but on "Return to Nightfall" he copper-fastens his dreamy, melodic textures to a pulsing, hypnotic groove.
Review: K7's DJ Kicks compilation series is given a new makeover with their latest juggernaut from London-based electronic deviant, Actress, who gives one of his rare appearances out of the live format and onto the decks. As expected, the techno shape-shifter puts through a diverse mix of 20-plus tracks spanning old-school Chicago house to more contemporary experimental techno and ambient-filtered dance music. This continuous DJ mix includes vintage Detroit techno from Reel By Real, distorted outsider disco from the Shit & Shine crew, Gherkin Jerk's "Red Planet" and a new cut from the man himself, "Bird Matrix". It's safe to say that this mix is comprehensive of the current state of affairs in the techno world: cuts ranging from the distorted house of Breaker 1 2, golden era electronica from Autechre, TTT's Zennor, Germany's STL and even PPU affiliate Moon B! An essential collection of music from 2015, highly recommended, of course!
Review: Moth is John Beltran's follow-up album to his 90s long player Ten Days of Blue, and proves to be a worthy successor. There's the jittery rhythms of "Wet With Rain" and the Detroit techno "Flight", while on "The Returning Dance" and "Nineteen Eighty Nine", the US producer looks to Larry Heard for inspiration as he drops emotive deep house tracks that centre on bleeding basslines and vivid melodies. Beltran's trademark ambient sounds are also present, with "Whatever The Road Brings" delivering chiming melodies over subtle rhythms, while the ethereal "Street Lights" and "My Robot" represents Beltran at his esoteric best.
Hurry Home The Trees Are Finally Green - (5:56) 62 BPM
She Dwells With Beauty - (4:16) 63 BPM
White Rainbows - (5:21) 64 BPM
Nine Sun - (2:21) 65 BPM
A New Room - (4:26) 72 BPM
Dream Lover! - (5:16) 60 BPM
Spring Affects Him - (1:59) 71 BPM
Bursting Bloom - (4:55) 83 BPM
Review: There is little we can do to introduce John Beltran to you. If you haven't come across him yet, then you're likely to have been living under a very heavy rock, or you simply haven't been listening to the right kind of music. The man has been a pillar of the infamous Peacefrog label, and has collaborated closely with artists like Carl Craig over the years, but all his recent appearances have come through the Delsin label. Everything At Once is his third album for the Dutch imprint, and it's undoubtedly some of his most leftfield work to date. Through gentle sways of subtle house music and vibrant soundscapes, Beltran paints a very linear picture. By that, we don't mean that the sounds travel down one path, far from it; our description stems from that fact that this truly sounds like a complete album, a masterful pic of work that feels connected and homogenous in its execution. Recommended.
Review: The time is now for John Beltran, a much loved Detroit producer and too often unchampioned legend of the ambient melodica garde. A marquee artist on Delsin for some years now, The Season Series presents a collection of motif-tipped and colorful compositions that draw on beatless atmospheres that on two occasions blissfully trip through classic Detroit house in tracks like "Lustrous Orb" and "Sunflower". Elsewhere, the LP focuses on beatless bleep and melodica in "Euphoric Dream Ocean", "You Interalize Them" and "Lose You", to the almost Enya-like "I Can Chase You Forever". For John Betran fans, this is a must.
Review: De:tuned's tenth anniversary series continues with another rock solid EP packed with previously unheard treats. John Beltran steals the show with inspired opener "Juliette", an outer space Detroit techno number that underpins melancholic chords and dreamy electronics with a bustling, futurist rhythm track. Elsewhere, Altern8 man Mark Archer wraps dreamy, mood-enhancing riffs around crunchy machine drums on the luxurious "Depth From Within", Future Beat Alliance doffs a cap to vintage ambient techno and IDM on the shuffling bliss of "Reflected Notes" and Max404 gets busy with pots-and-pans drum hits, smooth acid bass and elongated organ chords on excellent EP closer "Butterflying".
Review: The latest volume in Running Back's celebratory Mastermix series pays tribute to Hamburg's legendary Front club, which did much to popularize American house music (amongst other things) in Germany the late '80s and early '90s. The expansive set contains an epic DJ mix in two parts from original resident DJs Klaus Stockhausen and Boris Dlugosch, plus no less than 37 vintage cuts that made Front's dancers move. It's pretty much all solid-gold fare, with killer proto-house and first wave house jams being joined by obscure early UK electro (Syncobeat), Balearic deep house (Fila Brazillia's often-overlooked "Mermaids"), sleazy Italo-disco (Answering Machine), New Wave-era Euro dance, Paradise Garage-era New York anthems (Temper, Hot Streak), punk-funk (Modern Romance) and breezy, loved-up synth-pop (the brilliant Dub of Blue Moderne's "Through The Night").
Review: Many happy returns to Dutch techno stalwarts Delsin, who celebrate reaching a century of releases with 100 DSR, a collection of previously unreleased gems from the label's global army of artists. With such techno and electro talents as Gerry Read, Claro Intellecto, Redshape and A Made Up Sound involved, you'd expect it to be good. Pleasingly, it is, darting between shimmering IDM (CiM's brilliant "Way Station", Conforce's equally impressive "Wave Trance"), luscious Detroit futurism (Bleak's "Keep Me Close", John Beltran's brilliant "Return To Nightfall") and formidable heads-down pump (Sawlin, Mike Dehnert).
Review: Most box-set releases tend to focus on reissues and re-releases, but on Brainbox De:tuned opts for a different approach. The compilation features artists who defined European techno and electronica's golden age during the 90s, but the Belgian label has commissioned new or unreleased material from these acts. Fans of that era will be thrilled by B12's moody electro, the raw, analogue warmth of John Beltran's "Nineteen Eighty Nine" and the resonating bass-y techno of In:Sync's "Crack in the World". While not every track impresses - Move D's contribution sounds tepid - there are enough jaw-dropping piece of music on this compilation, witness the autumnal majesty of as One's "Where Did He Go & Why" to make Brainbox an essential release.