Review: The fourth compilation on Sulk Magic starts in style with "Shrimp Daddy", a dark, chugging piece of electronic disco from label owner Bird of Paradise. It sets the tone for the rest of the collection; Dead Love Embargo drops the low-slung "Transmutation", while Emile Strunz and Kolomensky both venture down an electro-influenced route on the acid-soaked "Casual Violence" and brooding "Raving Raven" respectively. There are some lighter moments, most notably on Dharma's shimmering Italo contribution, "A Quick Passing" and the textured ambience of Stove's "Ocean Loom", but overall the mood is designed for sweaty basements - a feeling that is expertly captured by Ian Blevins' "Fleshworld", a throbbing, rumbling piece of electronic disco.
Review: The second installment in the Sulk Magic series features more left of centre dance floor tracks. Freudenthal's "Rapax Apicem" sets the tone with an off-beat disco track that moves from detuned riffs into a gradual siren crescendo over a staccato rhythm. Kieran Holden's "3 Or Four' is a more conventional disco groover - albeit one laced in 303s - but it's only a brief break from the release's weird and wonderful sound. In:State pursues a tripped out acid direction on the aptly named "Spacer"; Dawad and Mokic's "Furious" is low-sling ebm workout and best of all, Clandestino's "Simpatico" sounds like a trippy take on Amnesia's new beat classic, "Ibiza".
Review: Sulk Magic has returned with it's third collection of left-field recordings. Taking a darker route, this multi-layered six-track EP showcases consistent levels of talent, while still retaining the labels hallmark eccentricity. Adventures in Daydreams open the V/A with a firm contribution full of polished intricacies before Tkuz bestows his presence with a nefarious industrial chugger in the form of 'Dagon' Next up, Mick Clarke's alias Iron Blu provides 'Hammerfall', an effortlessly captivating groover. Oli Warriner's 'Venti' comes to the fore with its rasping drums and intelligent techno melodies whilst Sigward's 'Random Life Render' takes you through a lo-fidelity dreamscape, opening the emotional airways of the release. With a rare foray from his prototype, Tronik Youth provides an infectious dark-to-dawn Italo track to close proceedings.
Cheap Thrills (Bird Of Paradise remix) - (7:02) 120 BPM
Overawed (Damon Jee remix) - (6:40) 117 BPM
Cheap Thrills (Jamie Blanco's District remix) - (6:04) 125 BPM
Review: Force Majeure's debut release on the Sulk Magic imprint comes stocked with mind-altering treats. The fourth release in quick succession from the label doesn't disappoint and cements its position as one to watch and certainly one of the hottest of 2017. The title track 'Overawed' mesmerises with it's low-slung undulating electronics, acid flashes and arpeggio rhythms. This is followed by another original in the form of "Cheap Thrills", plus remixes from label owner Bird of Paradise and Melbourne based Jamie Blanco.
Soldados De Paz (Maya Danon remix) - (6:48) 120 BPM
Simple Days (Ian Blevins remix) - (7:32) 120 BPM
Fuck Yeah (Stove remix) - (8:20) 80 BPM
Review: Next up on Shadow Child and Kry Wolf's Food Music is mysterious Swiss producer John Parsley with an impressive EP, which incorporates a wide variety of influences yet is rather consistent and engaging. 'Simple Days' begins with the brooding late night EBM of "Lost The Castle" (original mix) followed by the bold and sleazy acid shenanigans of "Fuck Yeah" which wouldn't have sounded out of place on Correspondant. For something much more straight ahead, there is the bass driven and rhythmic techno of "Lost The Castle" which will certainly go the distance. Each track receives a fairly impressive remix, but for out money it's all about Ian Blevins (ESP Institute) remix of "Simple Days".
Review: Next up on Bird Of Paradise's Sulk Magic is Lithuanian duo Roe Deers, who have appeared previously on Magic Feet and Nein. "Go" is one seriously neon-lit groove for the late night, featuring shimmering vintage synth arpeggios, shiny FM tones and smashing Linn drums - all the good stuff. "It Takes Two" (original mix) goes for some semi-brooding synth-pop reminiscent of Songs Of Faith & Devotion era Depeche Mode - very bold and stylish indeed. There's a grinding acid/EBM remix by one half of Eskimo Twins and the artist otherwise known as Heretic - Timothy Clerkin. "It Takes Two" (Tecwaa remix) goes for a more slo-mo and chilled out balearica vibe, which we also enjoyed.
Review: For the next installment on their Sulk Magic imprint, Bird Of Paradise and Force Majeure present ascendant producer Zakmina, who has previously impressed on like minded labels such as Roam Recordings and Nein. The Lithuanian artist seves up three retrofitted originals on the Introduction EP: from the infectious nu-disco energy of the title track, the neon-lit synthpop of "Introduction 2" and the gritty Italo/electro noir of "Till Death Do Us Part" (original mix) perfect for getting those brooding vibes happening late at night. There are some terrific remixes featured too, courtesy of label boss Bird Of Paradise on his Rogue Piano mix of the latter, and Mexico's Colossio going for a lo-slung and kosmische rendition on "Introduction".
Review: With releases on labels like Bordello A Parigi and ISM, Volta Cab aka Konstantyn Isaev has an impressive back catalogue. Now he takes his unique take on electronic disco to the emerging Sulk Magic imprint. The title track is a grandiose affair, with a swaggering groove underpinning epic synth hooks and impenetrable vocal samples, while on "Erotic Assassin", the Russian producer opts for a different approach; led by tight drums and pulsating acid, it eventually leads into a place where cocktail bar melodies prevail. "Perseus Wild" is different again: led by a funk bass and a searing guitar riff, while the release also features an upbeat, slightly more ominous take on the title track by Fabrizio Mammarella.
Review: Tel Aviv's Olsvanger is back, this time on Sulk Magic: Bird Of Paradise's imprint and this follows up a great release by Force Majeure. Starting off with the lo-slung/slo-mo Balearica of "The New Pollution" which then gets a series of remixes by some hot names. NYC expat in Berlin Curses (formerly Drop The Lime of Trouble & Bass fame) gives the track an Italo/industrial makeover for some spooky moments on the dancefloor. London's Konstantin Semionov aka KGBK does his best impression of the legendary John Carpenter on his gloomily neon-lit '80s horror flick rendition and finally the mysterious Obb Globelyn will take you into the esoteric with his shamanic tribalist excursion.
Review: Urexboyfriend makes his debut on Bird of Paradise's label with this left of centre EP. The title track is led by a jacking rhythm, crisp claps and an acidic undercurrent, while on "Alert, Alert!", he delivers an electronic disco groove that features wild electronic riffs and a seductive female vocal. The label has commissioned two fine remixes: Spazio Palazzo drops a slowed down, tripped out take on the title track, with the acid lines still lurking in the background. Meanwhile, John Parsley is drafted in to reshape "Alert, Alert!" In his hands, the tempo moves up a few notches and a funk bass underpins the original track's vocals and acidic elements.
Review: Sulk Magic is a label based in Newcastle Upon Tyne curated by Bird of Paradise & Force Majeure, that has recently presented great music by the likes of Volta Cab, Roe Deers and Olsvanger. Their next release comes from emerging producers and DJ duo from Moscow Uninc & Kolomensky - who present a new release The Baikal EP features four tripped-out cuts that will take you deep into the exotic. From the entrancing middle eastern breaks of the title track, through to the slo-mo EBM mutation of "Dune Call" and the emotive Kompakt style deep house of "Invisible Man" which is so very evocative.