Review: Through aliases like Mohalo and Multicast Dynamics circulating the realms of dub techno and ambient, Samuel van Dijk's VC-118a alias has always been the producer's safe harbour for electro. Keeping his beats dubby and atmospheres deep in Spiritual Machines, VC-118a's fourth album for Delsin (and first following Inside from 2019), presents a distinct connection with glitch, crackle and pop, with transmogrified vocals peppered throughout the LP. By creating his own complement of sample banks, software racks and devices in making the LP, van Dijk was able to work with a hybridised analogue-digital system purely of his own making and the results are abstract, downtempo and hugely atmospheric. Dubbed-out ambient electro with a newfound glitch. Quality.
Review: Mantis 06 is an inspired meeting of minds, as Dino Sabatini teams up with Delsin. Sabatini was one of the architects of hypnotic Italian techno during the early 00s, and this release shows that he has lost none of the flair that characterised his earlier work for Prologue. "Dakarai" revolves around a gentle, organic groove, while on "Afra", he embarks on a darker approach: tribal drums guide the arrangement, which is punctuated by dark textures. "Lewa" follows in a similar vein, as eerie hooks are realised over a hypnotic drum patterns. Meanwhile, "Akanke" is on a totally different tip, with Sabatini dropping hyper active break beats.
Review: Despite being released a quarter of a century ago, Steve Rachmad's Asphyx release has not grown old. Rachmad was one of the first European producers to make the Detroit template of soulful melodies and dynamic rhythms his own. "Pacifica" and the title track see Rachmad tweak that blueprint to add bubbling, tranced out textures, while on "Darkness In My Life", he articulates a near-perfect fusion of dreamy introspection and rolling drums. But Rachmad reaches nirvana on "X-Tracks" (which for years was mis-titled "Asphyx"), where those unmistakable, swirling melodies will melt even the coldest heart. If you don't already own Asphyx, now is the time to make that change that.
Review: Nick Lapien & Robin Koek's Artefakt project returns to Delsin with a largely ambient LP spearheaded by two experimentally driven beat numbers in "Iridescence" and the skizzy, dubbed-out sounds of "Terraforming". A continual force in exploring various strains of techno and electronica, Days Bygone presents Artefakt with a third studio album cushioned with drone, textural ambience and classical refrains of pianos and ethereal strings. There's percussive and synthwise elements to explore in "Cambium" and "Orinoco Basin" too with tracks like "Half Speed Tape" and "Wolf Number" venturing deep into the watercolours of landscape music.
Review: Hot on the heels of the magnificent 2020 Florence retrospective on Delsin, Stefan Robbers drops some brand new material for the label. Drawing on the deep Detroit techno sound that inspired him throughout his storied career, the veteran producer stamps his own signature style on these tracks. There's the spiky rhythm and offbeat drums of "Sonomatic"; while on "Sunset Route", the breezy synth melodies that have become Robbers' stock in trade are abundant. "Magic Potion" represents the clubbier side to Robbers' work, with a pulsating groove and clicking percussion underpinning niggling acid lines, but it's only a temporary divergence and "Voices From The Moon" is another atmospheric, off-centre affair.
Review: After a prolific 2020 with releases on Bad Manners and a collaboration with Rodhad on his WSNWG label, Vril returns to Delsin. The Dutch imprint was one of the first outlets to release his material, so his return is timely. The title track is a brooding, atmospheric piece with celestial synths and low-tempo bass pulses at its heart. Delsin has tapped some respected names to remix the track; Voiski sticks to the original track's tempo, with a mid-tempo rhythm underpinning the emotive, textured sounds. Meanwhile, Vril teams up with Bad Manners boss Marcel Dettmann to drop slinky break beats and euphoric synths on their version of "Seele", while the His Master's Voice remix is the most intense version, led by a booming bass and pounding broken beats.
Review: Continuing their permeance into contemporary techno culture Delsin Records outta Amsterdam bring together a refined selection of stalwarts and newcomer artists this annual compilation. Scour down the list and you'll find bonus numbers from the likes of Forest Drive West with his classic rhythmic style to headliners like BNJMN, Natural & Electronic.system and WAV, aka Wata Igarashi & Voiski! Intrigues include amethia recordings purge Varuna, all time classic John Beltran (in "Euphoric Dream Ocean") and cosmic broken beat experiments from Wladimir M (think Planet E and Evo Lute). Furthermore, find tracks from electro wizz CiM and go deeper into italian-style techno variations with VC-118A's "Crunch" and of course some OG electro from Delsin legend Versalife. To 2021 and beyond!
Review: Hot on the heels of CiM's recent Series Two reissue comes another evergreen re-release. Service Pack originally appeared on Delsin back in 1999, and pretty much wrote the blueprint for what is sometimes referred to as IDM. There are glitchy, squelchy abstractions sketched out on "Comfort Control" and "Friends I've Made", while on "Shift" CiM effortlessly fuses dreamy Detroit textures with rickety rhythms. "Recursive" sees him segue into As One-style ambient techno stylings and "Nissan" is a gloriously lopsided deep groove. With clubs set to remain closed over the coming months, Service Pack is a timely reminder of the power of home listening electronic music.
Review: Simon Walley aka CiM originally released Series Two on the revered Headspace imprint back in 1999 and now it gets a timely reissue on Delsin. Despite the passage of over two decades, these tracks have not aged. The gentle melodies and bubbling groove of "Soft Rain" is the type of deep techno-house you'd associate with labels like Dial, while on "Bias", fragile bells and emotive synths are wrapped around an faster rhythm. "View 91 Fill" sees Walley deploy an electro arrangement to deliver wide-eyed, uplifting hooks, while on "Edit Micro Tune" and "Factory Preset One", CiM's glitchy, broken beat sound comes to the fore.
Review: Boris Bunnik follows the Manifold long player from earlier this year with another fine Versalife release. Over four tracks, Shape Shifter sees the Dutch producer deliver the type of expansive electro that the project has become synonymous with. There's the warm, rumbling bass and eerie synth lines of "Synapse", where the Versalife project sounds at its most cinematic, while in contrast, there's the stripped back, frosty "Fractal". On the title track, Bunnik lays down metallic kicks and ticking percussion as a basis for wild, acid-led bass licks, while he rounds off this exemplary release with the eerie, layered sound scapes and glitchy percussive ticks of "Novelty".
Review: For the latest chapter in the Delsin saga, tracks from BNJMN's 2018 album Hypnagogia get remixed by some of electronic music's most respected producers. First up is Dial mainstay Efdemin, who turns the title track into a deep techno affair, with swirling pads unfolding over a pulsating groove. Luigi Tozzi's take on "Indub" is also from the deeper end of the spectrum, but the Italian producer uses steely drums and ticking percussion to create an atmospheric but effective arrangement. rRpxymore's take on "Atoms Speak" ventures in a different direction, with snappy kicks underpinning clipped percussion and detuned, warbling synth lines.
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: For anyone with a passing interest in 90s European techno, Stefan Robbers' work as Florence is an essential project because while it was inspired by Detroit techno it is shot through with his unique perspectives. The Analogue Expressions reissue on Delsin shines a light on his benchmark Florence Eps for the Eevo Lute Muzique imprint. Ranging from mellow and mournful tracks like "It's In The Hands" and the utterly timeless 'The Vineyard' to the kind of insistent grooves so beloved of Robbers - check the snaking bass and swirling psychedelic synths on "Analogue Expressions" itself - to more hyperactive steely futurism as articulated on "Robotica", this is a truly stellar collection of electronic tracks that still shines brightly after three decades.
Review: The pairing of Antonio Giova and Valerio Gomez de Ayala have only a few releases under the Natural/Electronic System alias, and originally rose to prominence with their expansive, fluid DJ sets. They apply this approach for their debut record on Delsin; "Marea", with its undulating, stripped back groove and dreamy synths, inhabits the same space as XDB, while on "Rituale", they change tact with a stripped back, drum-heavy workout. On "Insecta", the pair picks up the pace for a more dance floor-focused but still deep groove, while this fine, far-reaching release concludes with the atmospheric broken beats of "Vespero".
Review: Mantis is a new sub-label from Delsin, and it launches in style with a release from Joe Baker aka Forest Drive West. Fans of the UK producer's idiosyncratic releases for Livity and Whities will find much to love here. "Hidden Places" stars the EP in ominous mode, with evocative, swirling shapes floating up over a muscular, sinewy bass and spine-tingling percussion. On "Invisible", Baker heads towards the dance floor with an eerie rhythm bolstered by surging bass that supports haunting textures. It's only a temporary flirtation however, and by the time he reaches "Radiance", a murky soundscape guides the listener towards a subdued finale.
Review: 9719 is the work of an inspired hook-up: at one end of the world there's Wata Igarashi, who has released on Bunker NY and Time 2 Express, while at the opposite end, there's Voiski with a catalogue that includes work for L.I.E.S. and Dolly. The fruits of their collaboration is just as far-flung; it moves from the dreamy, bubbling groove of "Pronom" into "Pomme", a pulsating slice of peak-time hypno-techno track that would not sound out of place on a Mike Parker EP. " Regex" is also an uptempo affair, but here they use tranced out synth riffs to accompany the pacy rhythm. "Riff" is another irresistible piece, bolstered by a throbbing acidic groove.
Review: Artefakt launched their own label, De Stijl, last year, but they now return to their spiritual home, Delsin, for this widescreen EP. "Ganzfeld Effect" is among their most expansive compositions to date, with dreamy synths and droning textures unravelling over subsonic bleeps. On "Vapour", they use rickety, staccato drums as a basis for their ghostly synths, while "Delphic" sees them travel down a broken techno route, accompanied by atmospheric textures. The title track is the most dance floor-friendly affair but even here, Artefakt don't break a sweat, instead focusing on dubbed out drums and a shuffling rhythm as a basis for the track's dreamy melodies.
Review: Dutch powerhouse Delsin bunkers down for another year with a choice selection of tracks taken from the label's marque artists, regulars and newcomers. The compilation showcases the label's tastemaking approach to embracing a somewhat unidentified strands of dub electro, a new and developing sound harnessed it seems by Delsin this year. Claro Intelcto slathers his track "Two Thousand" with more of the obscene basslines we love the British artist for (with a lighter alternative to be found on "Messages") while Conforce plays with pixelation and subtle subsonic electro pulses in "OI". Gunnar Haslam rivals Porter-Ricks-deepness in his track "Cacique De Poyais" while label boss Peel Seamus warms things up with Detroit-styled keys and synths to offset the deeper, melodic and shimmering dub of new talent His Master's Voice.
Review: Inspired in name by the EMI series but not in sound, His Master's Voice delivers a wide-ranging debut for Delsin. Transition moves from the atmospheric ambient soundscapes of "Fire Red" and the jittery deep techno as mapped out on "Eve" into something far darker on the title track. There, the author takes his audience on a trip through the nether regions of underground electronic music, guided by a rattling, steely rhythm and militaristic snare rolls that underpin mysterious chords. Maintaining this nocturnal mood, Vril delivers a moody break beat-led version of "Eve" that resounds to eerie bass and crackling percussion - not one to listen to with the lights off.
Review: It has taken Dennis van Gemert aka Area Forty One three years to release the third instalment of the Nocturnal Passions series, but it was worth the wait. The title track casts a hypnotic spell thanks to its rumbling bass and rickety drums that support chilling melodies. Meanwhile on "Supernova", van Gemert adds tight electro drums to the equation. "Desolated Grounds" is a bleak affair with acrid tones squeezed from a 303 and then fused with frosty melodies, while the latest iteration from this singular project concludes with a more dance floor focused track in the form of the pared back "G-832C".
Review: Boris Bunnik slips back into his Conforce alias to continue his long-running association with Delsin. Indeed, Dawn Chorus is his fifth album for the label, and sees him deliver a range of tracks, all underpinned by the deep musicality that the project is associated with. "Void" and "Solstice" are robust electro numbers, underpinned by deep 808s, while on "Aphelion", a pulsating techno groove prevails. "Io" sees Bunnik revisit the 90s IDM sound as spiky beats provide the basis for spellbinding hooks, while "Marooned" sees the Dutch producer in darker form, weighed down by acrid acid lines and stripped back beats.
Review: The mysterious Lost Trax has been responsible for some of the landmark electro and techno records of recent years - check "Saturiun System" in case you are in any doubt - and Surface Treated adds to this catalogue of exceptional music. On this occasion, the focus is on Detroit techno; "Interstate (Halfway Home Mix)" is led by sweet melodies riding a snaking groove, while the title track is tougher, as acid-seared hi hats and an ominous sub-bass collide. There is some reference to their electro style on "Still", but in the main this is a techno record, as the dubbed "De Laye" demonstrates.
Review: Peel Seamus is the stage name for Delsin owner Marsel Van Der Wielen, and the label started back in 1996 with a cassette release from this project. Since then, Peel Seamus releases have been few and far between, so Susurro is a timely reminder of Marsel's talents. It is all the more remarkable given that these tracks were all recorded around 2000. On "Valve Pod" and "Absence In Reality", he delivers beautiful broken beat jams, while "Strawberry Hills" is a gloriously deep slice of techno soul and on "Head Over Heels" he drops a spine-tingling dance floor groove, lit up by the type of wide-eyed keys that prevailed on Derrick May records.
Review: It's hard to believe that "Give Your Body" is nearly 30 years old. Originally issued on Djax back in 1992, its throbbing acid groove and mesmerising vocal sample still burn with the same hypnotic intensity. Delsin has commissioned two of modern techno's most respected names to provide new remixes. Delta Funktionen delivers a tripped out, break beat version of the classic, with layer upon layer of acid woven into the arrangement, The excellent Lost Trax meanwhile drop a straighter, dance floor-focused version; beefing up the drums and adding a visceral edge to the arrangement, it and the Delta Funktionen take are respectful interpretations of this evergreen classic.
Review: Mark Stewart aka Claro Intelecto returns to Delsin after 2017's Exhilarator long player with this powerful, at times bleak EP. "The Thunderdrome" sees the storied producer set out his stall; named after a long shuttered club in his native Manchester, its splintered percussion and spiky rhythm exudes post-industrial moodiness. He follows this with "Sniffer Dogs", a dense, textured affair full of chimes and underpinned by glitchy beats. It's not all heaviness though: "Messages" is a subtle, supple deep house track that shows Stewart's more melodic side. But as the glitchy, low-tempo closing track "Sirens" demonstrates, on this occasion Claro Intelecto is more concerned with darker emotions.
Review: Redshape follows last year's A Sole Game album with a return to Delsin, one of the main labels that has supported him over the years. This four-tracker has all of the German producer's signature sounds; "Android Malfunction" is a heads-down roller that resounds to eerie bleeps and doleful synths set to busy, rumbling drums. On both "Passengers" and "Bishop", he opts for a more understated approach: the drums are still tough and roll effortlessly, but the bass tones have that unmistakably melancholic Redshape tinge. Most impressive though is "A New Home", where Redshape weaves haunting melodies into a steely rhythm, making for an unforgettable deep techno piece.
The Fifth Planet (Forest Drive West remix) - (8:21) 123 BPM
The Fifth Planet (Evigt Morker remix) - (6:49) 123 BPM
Tapeloop (Polar Inertia remix) - (8:10) 152 BPM
The Blue Hour (Valentino Mora Cosmic Trans Rephase) - (7:38) 118 BPM
Review: After a series of releases for Delsin, including their 2017 debut album, Robin Koek and Nick Lapien aka Artefakt get the remix treatment on the label. First up is an inspired choice, Forest Drive West, who turns the title track from their debut Delsin EP, The Fifth Planet, into a dreamy, droning stepper. Evigt Morker is tapped for a version of the same track and delivers a droning, rolling techno groove that stretches out to infinity and beyond. "Tapeloop", from their Kinship long player morphs into a dense, droning workout thanks to Polar Inertia's touch, while Valentino Mora brings the release to a reflective conclusion with a teased out, atmospheric take on "The Blue Hour".
Review: Delsin has scored a serious coup with The Beginning, Mike Golding's first EP in over a decade. One half of seminal deep techno act B12, Golding has played a pivotal role in electronic music's direction over the past quarter century. The Beginning shows that he retains his magic touch. "Game of Chance" is an abstract, stepping groove, led by eerie synths, while on "Source Codes", he edges back towards the dance floor to the sound of crashing snares, niggling bleeps and a wiry rhythm. While "Semaphores" sees him return to a more off-centre rhythm, it is shot through with atmospheric soundscapes, while "Boosenbender" pulses and throbs with all the nervous, electronic energy of early B12.
Review: The latest iteration from Boris Bunnik's Conforce project is on Delsin, a label that has hosted much of his previous output. Like other Conforce releases, there is a focus on the deeper side of techno here; the title track sets the tone with a swirling, synth-led piece of ambient mood music, while "Quantum Phaser" is just as evocative - the key difference is that dubbed out drums underpin Bunnik's fathomic dub textures. On "Muon Transverse Momentum" the storied Dutch artist remains focused on the dance floor, with rumbling drums providing the basis for evocative chords. However, the release also contains the more linear "Scorched Earth", which shows that Conforce isn't scared to drop tough, brittle techno.
Review: One of the first labels to release Gunnar Haslam's material back in 2014, Delsin deserves praise for being so quick to tune in to his left of centre talent. This relationship continues now with Cacique De Poyais. The title track is a sparse, tripped out affair that unravels over the course of 13 minutes, its tonal bleeps and sequences twisting and turning in a seductive manner. "Port Sommeil" adopts a similar approach and applies it to the dance floor, with a glitchy, detuned groove underpinning the warbling frequency shifts. Rounding off this idiosyncratic release is "Azote Du Guano", where Haslam ups the pace and puts a focus on chiming bells.
Review: Samuel Van Dijk aka VC-118A follows 2016's Shift Register with another effortless, elegantly executed artist album. Moving from the frazzled dub techno of "Tide" - a sound more commonly associated with his Mohlao alias - into sleek electro jams such as "Pcb" and "Dither" and eerie ambient passages like "Metric Spaces", the Dutch producer's third long player shows that he is one of modern electronic music's most versatile producers. While most of Inside adheres to an understated sensibility, there is also a playful undercurrent here, audible on the stepping rhythm and frazzled acid of "Fm", while "Hiss" ranks among his most dance floor friendly techno output.
Review: Delsin has put out some great reissues in recent years - including benchmark work by Lost Tax and VC-118A - but their latest reissue project is the most impressive one yet. Repeat was a collaboration between Mark Broom and Ed and Andy from The Black Dog and Repeats was their sole artist album, released in 1995. Given the calibre of the artists involved in this project, it is no surprise that it veers in tone and sound from the IDM of "End Up" and "G-Thing" to the beats-y "Tuesday's Hot Hit" and "Lilt A" - always a thing with Broom - into beautiful Detroit techno tracks, such as the hyper speed "Hurrican Felix" and the break beats of "Drifting Sounds". Repeats is an essential release for any electronic music fan.
Review: Delsin has been a purveyor of deep electronic music for the best part of two decades - and as this compilation demonstrates, 2018 was no exception. It moves in sound from re-issued electro classics by Lost Trax and VC-118A - the latter's chilling string-led "Sepia" is particularly beautiful - into Yagya's brittle deep house/techno and the gentle dub techno of Vril. Even on the more uptempo tracks, such as the throbbing acid of Artefakt's "Falling Into The Light" and the robotic, clanging rhythms of Yan Cook's "Dead Satellite", there is a subtlety and depth of sound absent in most labels' identities. Here's to another twenty years.
Review: Legendary and highly sought after EP by Midwest trio Indio, originally released on British imprint Rhythmic Tech in 2008, after a terrific debut on Derrick May's seminal Transmat imprint in 1999. Comprised of Detroit innovator John Beltran with shadowy Chicago producer Steve Mcqueen and vocalist Seth Taylor, the Inca EP features some of the trio's finest moments. Whereas the original featured three versions of the title track, only the main version appears here - an energetic serving of good ol' fashioned hi-tech soul. In addition is the sensual deepness of "Winter Long" and its intricate syncopated rhythms, and the absolutely timeless and emotive "Blue Fantasy" - undoubtedly the EPs highlight. You just don't hear techno like this anymore. Props to Delsin for finally making this essential release available to all once again.
Review: Originally issued on AC Records back in 2015, Vaxna now gets a re-release on Delsin. Like the Dutch label's recent reissuing of mystery act Lost Trax, the appearance of this EP is timely. VC-118A aka Samuel Van Dijk has an impressive back catalogue, and Vaxna is one of his most impressive electro records. The title track's spiky drums support atmospheric washes and brooding bass, while on "Sepia", he adds some chilling strings, adding further to the release's eerie undercurrent. "25h" is more down beat and sounds not too dissimilar from the output of the Mohlao project that Van Dijk sometimes releases under, but this is an electro record through and through, as the slinky rhythm of "Versicolor" demonstrates.
Review: Hypnagogia is BNJMN aka Ben Thomas' first album in seven years, and it has certainly been worth the wait. Veering wildly in sounds from the atmospheric ambience of "Atoms Speak" and "Glowed" into the nightmarish tones and stepping rhythm of "Swarm", it shows once again that he is a versatile artist. While Hypnagogia also focuses on the dance floor, most impressively on the rolling, subtle filters of "Titan Dome" and the eerie "Hypnagogia" (part 1)" BNJMN's fifth album works best during its home listening moments. Even the more uptempo "InDub" boasts the kind of subtle production approach that works best when experienced from the sofa.