Feb 042011
 

Hello,

Five years since her Type debut, Sanso Xtro finally offers ‘Fountain Fountain Joyous Mountain’, her unique sophomore album. Many of you will remember the fractured beauty of ‘Sentimentalist’ and if anything she’s built on that LP with an expanded musical vocabulary taking in elements of gamelan, spacious arrangements, the spirit of Talk Talk at their most sublime and, most notably, blissful vocal sequences. Initial copies come on super-limited clear lime vinyl – act fast.

James Blake’s transition from electro-acoustic dubstep outsider to urban blues hero is capped off with his eponymous debut album – one of the more polarising releases of the last few years. Just short of hearing it on the 256 bus (mate, play that Gyptian again!), his music is seemingly being played everywhere by everyone, with endless plugs on primetime radio causing many of Blake’s peers to turn pale at the mere sound of his voice. Anyway, try and ignore the hype (positive and negative!) and decide for yourself – the album is pressed up to the highest standards on double gatefold vinyl (with two bonus tracks), and standard CD.

The uber-talented Isolée also makes a full-length return five years since his last LP, ‘We Are Monster’. Again, ‘Well Spent Youth’ is imbued with the kind of soulful integrity and exceptional production values you’d expect, delivering a sound that’s riddled with contradictions between beautifully smudged arrangement and HD finish, or the age-old home-listening vs club vibe. It’s a hugely original, intricate and layered collection of tracks that reminds us most of all (in spirit, if not sound) of Newworldaquairum’s ‘The Dead Bears’ – which really is praise of the highest order. Massive recommendation on this one!

Through 2010 Norse metal/noise gods Jazkamer released a subscription-only album per month, but May’s edition was so heavy Type just had to have it on wax! ‘Chestnut Thornback Tar’ is a monstrous amalgam of fierce avant-metal and one harrowing drone track, but probably the best thing is a 75 minute mix CD included in the package, juicing the nastiest shards from the entire series. Massively recommended to all the nasty pasties!

Alga Marghen are ruling our world right now with two previously unpublished albums from the French underground circa late ’70s/early ’80s. Legendary sound artist Ghédalia Tazartès’s exceptional ‘Granny Awards’ has just blown us away with its prescient, jarring, head-f*ck of free expressions, and right out there on the fringes, Michel Potage’s ’77 opus ‘Occupé’ is a lost jewel of avant-garde experimentalism featuring Jac Berrocal and Pierre Bastian in an almighty ten-piece ensemble.

From the Sublime Frequencies camp we get a charming, gatefold 2LP of rare Pakistani folk and pop instrumentals made between 1966-76 and plucked from the EMI Pakistan archives, while label head Alan Bishop and his Sun City Girls also offer up a lavish new CD reinterpreting the North African and Middle Eastern songs that inspired them in the early ’80s. A fascinating release for sure and packaged in limited numbers of gold-foil editions with poster.

For more reflective listening we’d direct you to Stephan Mathieu’s romantic, esoteric drone transformations on ‘A Static Place’ for 12K, the gorgeous Senufo editions LP from Gregg Kowalsky on clear vinyl, or equally Little Skull’s astonishing LP for Elica, ten songs of beautifully idiosyncratic, creaking folk, dilapidated ballroom ambience and rustic drones packaged in a fold out diorama with pop-up ballerina. Honestly! Sonic Youth also make a welcome entry with the latest addition to their essential SYR series, an expanded OST to Fabrice Gobert’s ‘Simon Werner A Disparu’, comparable to their ‘Made In USA’ and ‘Demon Lover’ soundtracks.

For the ‘floor, four records stand out a mile this week… Tin Man’s ‘Acid Test’ returns to pre-Wasteland instrumental acid with his craftsman-like touch, backed with a sophisticated sleep-techno mix from Donato Dozzy, while Julio bashmore expands his repertoire with the diverse tempos and ideas of ‘Everyone Needs A Theme Tune’. Finally, Not Not Fun inaugurate their new 100% Silk offshoot with two skewed disco/acid/proto-avant-house gems from Sex Worker operating as Ital in queer acid mode and the sexier downtempo sound of The Deeep for fans of muggy ’80s disco and LA Vampires.

Also out this week, new releases from Coh, Aardvarck, 1000names, Illum Sphere, Eglo, Sbtrkt, Balam Acab, Mogwai, Sun Ra, Steffi, Exit Recordings, Faust and much much more.

Have yourselves a wonderful week…

Peace! nekkers….xx

Albums of the Week



JAMES BLAKE
James Blake
DUBSTEP / GRIME / FUNKY
Atlas Recordings
2LP // £19.99

*Vinyl edition includes two tracks not on the CD version* James Blake’s eponymous debut is probably the most discussed album of the last 6 months, and set to be among the best of the next 12. It’s kinda hard to comprehend his metamorphosis from electro-acoustic dubstep outsider in 2009 to urban blues hero in 2011, but one thing has become clearly apparent: this is one artist with a consistently arresting musical vision. He’s been compared to Jamie Woon, but for our money Blake’s sound is light years ahead in so many respects. His awareness of ultra-modern R&B, dubstep and electronica production techniques, coupled with a sensitivity for stunning spatial detailing and a feel for purposefully, potently skewed melodies and jarring harmonics marks him out as a singular talent. We’d make a comparison between their vocals, but even that doesn’t stretch very far! And it’s really those vocals which elevate this album beyond his earlier 12″s, now fully revealed from the tenderised, jigsaw-like snippets which peppered the likes of ‘The Bells Sketch’ and some of Mount Kimbie’s best moments. He studied music at Goldsmith’s so man obviously knows his chops, but his openness to autotune and other vocal trickery on the melted blues of opener ‘Unluck’, the ultra subtle stereo fluctuations in ‘The Wilhelm Scream’ or heavily applied in ‘Lindisfarne I & II’ are so unconventional with a voice like his but deployed so deftly that we can see this becoming the standard for kids beyond the reaches of R&B/Dancehall very soon, if he’s not already set the change in motion. All of that said, the unadorned piano and vocals of ‘Give Me My Mouth’ stands out a mile, reiterating his talent in sharp relief.



SANSO-XTRO
Fountain Fountain Joyous Mountain
ELECTRONIC
DIGITALIS
LP // £10.99

*Initial copies come on super-limited transparent yellow vinyl – mastered by Lawrence English and cut at D&M in Berlin* Sanso-Xtro’s long awaited follow-up to her 2005 debut for Type finally arrives, and sees an amazing development of sound. It’s a gentle, fragile collection of songs and instrumentals that remind us at one moment of Talk Talk, at others of old Alan Lomax recordings, with Gamelan and Kosmische experiments dropped in-between the gaps. In the time that has passed since ‘Sentimentalist’ Melissa Agate removed herself from the UK to South Australia near Adelaide. Living in relative “hibernation” gives some explanation to the more intimate and sublime new sound she’s put together, revealing sugared and reduced glosolalia applied to an array of synths, accordion, melodion, kalimba, guitar and custom-made percussion contraptions which fold into her exquisite and fragile blend of Kosmische, electronica and avant-pop. With ‘Fountain Fountain Joyous Mountain’ she builds on the ideas of her first record with ornate detailing and a blissfully attuned sense of arrangement, making her multi-dimensional songs seem playfully effortless. After catching us by the hairs of the neck with hypnotic, alien gamelan tones in ‘Fountain Fountain’ her layered vocal unexpectedly closes the track with a blissful flourish. Following this, her background as a drummer soon becomes evident in the tingling percussion of ‘The Origin Of Birds’ coupled with daubs of dizzying melody, which, in its fragile balance of microcosmic chaos refracts into the natural world themes of ‘Wood Owl Wings A Rush, Rush’ and the album’s literal and figurative centrepoint ‘Hello Night Crow’ where her vocals make another poignant intimation. Like all good things, Agate uses her voice sparingly – they don’t return until the album’s closing strokes after the refracted Jazz tumble of ‘Goodnight Thylacine’ and the suspenseful acoustic guitar piece ‘Light Come, Light Go, Ghost’. When ‘Exit: Joyous Mountain’ arrives it feel like an old Alan Lomax gem dug up from a creek bed, wheezing melodica/harmonica in systolic synchronization with tantalising vox.



ISOLEE
Well Spent Youth
TECHNO / HOUSE
PAMPA RECORDS
CD // £10.99

Isolée albums only show up rarely, and Rajko Müller’s third set, ‘Well Spent Youth’ is an absolute peach. He’s been honing his silky-yet-abstract sound for over 15 years, delivering unquestionably definitive albums such as ‘Rest’ and ‘We Are Monster’ along the way whilst never straying from what makes his music so involving and subtly memorable – an otherworldly, organically soulful integrity and exceptional production values. These two factors have elevated his releases, especially the long players, above the dancefloor into the home listening quarters, sculpting tracks whose ambiguous shapes and richly nuanced colour takes on new forms according to set and setting. Of course, they’re all open to interpretation, but the cleverness of Isolée’s compositions infects any environment they’re deployed in with a queerly immersive joy which lends itself perfectly to cosy sofa sessions and heads-down dancefloors equally. There’s a genuine magic in the way he draws the listener into his hushed House grooves and then proceeds to envelope us in morphing patterns and wonderfully skewed melodies with that indescribable Isolée vibe. From initial listens the frayed chords of ‘Thirteen Times An Hour’, ‘Hold On’s padded acidic quirks, the rhythmic intricacies of ‘One Box’ and the jazz-taught ‘Celeste’ are all potential club killers in the right hands, whilst the loping dérive of ‘Going Nowhere’ and breathtaking closer ‘In Our Country’ provide pure aural catharsis for discerning electronic music lovers. Highly Recommended.



JAZKAMER
Chestnut Thornback Tar (Limited Vinyl Edition)
DARK AMBIENT / DRONE / METAL
Type
LP // £10.99

*Vinyl-only edition, comes with a bonus full length album/mix on CD* Lasse Marhaug and John Hegre’s Jazkamer troupe are among the most respected and prolific members of the infamous Norwegian noise/metal scene. They love making a f**king good racket. During 2010 they undertook an ambitious project to release an album of new material every month for 12 months via a subscription service. ‘Chestnut Thornback Tar’ was originally the May edition but the fiends at Type just had to own it on vinyl, hence this wax-only pressing including a bonus mix CD reducing the series to 75 minutes of absolutely deadly and mind-bending visceral noise collisions. The album is dominated by the 20-minute molten suffusion of ‘Sentimental Journey’, a wading-through-mollasses sprawl of sustained tones and howling-into-the-wind white noise bearing no small debt to Dylan Carlson’s Earth (it’s a bit of a giveaway that Lasse wears an ‘Earth 2’ t-shirt on the rear sleeve image!) and conducted with an almost Zen-like attention to detail. However, the rest of the LP takes a very different shape, joined by collaborators Nils Are Drønen and Jean-Phillipe Gross to crush out another side of overdriven avant-metal dementia with splattercore drums seething under banks of petrifying noise worthy of Whitehouse at their most fearsome. Yet, the most impressive thing here is probably the CD, forcing 12 months of multi-disciplinary noises to co-exist in dissonant harmony – making for one of the most visceral and exciting mixtapes you’ll hear this year. Ear-meltingly heavy sh*t, for the brave!



VARIOUS / SUBLIME FREQUENCIES
Pakistan: Folk And Pop Instrumentals 1966-1976
WORLD
Sublime Frequencies
2LP // £29.99

**Double gatefold, tip-on style jacket with sleeve notes** Sublime Frequencies peer through the brief window of Pakistani folk and pop produced between 1966-76 on their latest expedition. The album’s compiler, Stuart Ellis trawled the EMI Pakistan archives to pluck out 22 joyfully charming and unique fusions of “filmi”, folk and pop music with electrified instrumentation which was new to the region in 1966. To put this music in context we need to consider that prior to ’66 Pakistan was subject to a restrictive decade-long dictatorship under Field Marshal Ayub Khan, He was succeeded for ten years by Zulfikar Ali Bhutto’s Socialist Pakistan Peoples Party during which time American and English pop covers became popular in the Karachi nightlife, spawning a generation of bands with names like The Mods, The Bugs, The Fore Thoughts and The Abstracts, all of whom appear here playing a mixture of Surf and psyche-tinged rock with predominant traces of traditional folk and popular film music. This revolution ended when Sharia law was imposed under Military Chief General Zia-ul-Haq in June 1977, and so with it the end of Pakistan’s “Swinging ’70s”. Thankfully we still have this record of the period which should be recommended to anyone who nabbed the Tafo Brothers or Sound of Wonder issues on Finder Keepers or with a passion for truly niche ’70s pop.



GREGG KOWALSKY
Battery Townsley
DARK AMBIENT / DRONE / METAL
Senufo Editions
LP // £14.99

*Beautiful clear vinyl edition, limited to 280 copies and individually numbered* The ninth release from Giuseppe Ielasi’s Senufo Editions features Gregg Kowalsky’s captivating performance consisting of 10 cassette players positioned inside the bunker of Battery Townsley, a World War II coastal fortification in Marin County, California. Ielasi also contributes a ‘Studio Mix’ afterthought on the other side, but the real star of this LP is Kowalsky’s séance-like drones and spatial disturbances, beautifully recorded by Marielle Jakobsons. Using the natural (well, man-made) resonance of the bunker we get a real sense of swirling space as Raga-like drones mingle in the ether and glance off cold concrete whilst shuffling, scuttling rodent sounds emerge from the peripheries, drawing the ear in any one of ten directions at once. In stark comparison, Giuseppe Ielasi’s studio mix tempers the psychedelic mass of sound into one long viscous drone, pulsing and radiating waves of slow moving energy which explore the full parameters of their sphere, like some dreamy reminiscence of the original event. This is a beautiful album, especially when coupled with the sleeve artwork from Jefre Cantu-Ledesma. Clear vinyl, limited edition of 280.



LITTLE SKULL
Little Skull
DARK AMBIENT / DRONE / METAL
ELICA
LP // £20.99

*Sublime fold-out diorama packaging with pop-up ballerina, limited to 150 copies* This eponymous entry of haunted ballroom folk from Little Skull on the acclaimed Elica label is the first that’s crossed our radar. From the little info we can glean, Little Skull (sometimes known as L’il Skull) has released a handful of privately pressed lathe cut vinyl with similarly sublime packaging and a couple CD’s for Students Of Decay, which we’re quite sure you’ll be rabidly tracking down after experiencing this one. There’s absolutely no external reference points other than the label info, which really ratchets up the mystery behind their evocative aesthetic, making us wonder what instrumentation and methods lies behind the veil of secrecy. It’s possible to discern guitars, possibly a violin, hand-percussion and some beautiful organ drones, but the rest is anyone’s guess, really. Most importantly the arrangements are singular yet paint a wide spectrum of emotions and atmospheres touching upon Barn Owl-like doom drone, dilapidated midnight ballroom ambience worthy of The Caretaker and creaking folk from the backwaters of the imagination. A truly endearing release, act fast if you’d like one.



GHEDALIA TAZARTES
Granny Awards
ELECTRONIC
Alga Marghen
LP // £16.99

My word, where to start with this total head-f*ck of a record? Well, first off, it’s another mind-expanding, previously unpublished jaw-dropper dug out by alga marghen, presenting ‘Granny Awards’ from the archives of the acclaimed French sound artist, Ghédalia Tazartès. The label are really spoiling us with their releases of late, this in particular being one of our very favourites. Verging on out-and-out craziness, but reigned-in with a masterfully steady head, these six tracks were created some time in the early ’80s “in his anhydridic Paris”, largely based on materials pre-dating his debut LP ‘Diasporas’ before he re-appropriated them for this lost work of art. We’re instantly mesmerized by the opening track ‘Ferme ta gueule, zarathustra’, Ghédalia freely connecting the garbled “voix d’enfant” of Raphaël Glucksmann with intoxicating, slow moving and sustained synth chords, before jump-cutting into bird calls, dissonant arabesque strings and eccentric vocalisations with a blinding sense of freedom. The second side opens to a comedic, exuberant vocal set to crackly 78 backing on ‘Whatever’ and turns blind corners into ethno-noise trance-outs on ‘Singing’, hyper-rhythmic experiments on ‘Wild’ and a jarring hardcore punk-out in ‘My Rock Ghedalia’. The freedom of expression and taste for exotic, arabesque tonalities is a mighty revelation and we assure you we’ll be digging much deeper into Ghédalia’s catalogue at the nearest opportunity. Exceptional sounds, massively recommended!!!



SONIC YOUTH
Simon Werner A Disparu
INDIE / ROCK / ALTERNATIVE
SYR
LP // £13.99

**Includes free MP3 download card and bonus track download redeemable from the label** It’s always cause for excitement when a new SYR record hits the shelves. Admittedly I’m a paid-up member of the Sonic Youth can do no wrong club, but I do appreciate that historically the SYR series is where we find the band at their most arresting. ‘Simon Werner A Disparu’ is the ninth in the series and finds the band again tackling a soundtrack, with the instrumental shimmer that blessed their ‘Made In USA’ OST recording (and the lesser known ‘Demon Lover’ OST) haunting proceedings. This is, from the first few notes, the Sonic Youth we know and love, all distant, expertly pieced together and as hazy as the summer you spent eating ice creams with that girl down the road when you were both nine years old. The band certainly aren’t doing anything new here, but for those of you unimpressed by the near sing-along charms of ‘The Eternal’ they should find more than enough wonky off-centre business here to keep them happy until the next SYR instalment. ‘Simon Werner A Disparu’ is soundtrack music as produced by a band who are totally comfortable both with their sound and with the subject matter. What more can I say? Unmissable stuff.



STEPHAN MATHIEU
A Static Place
HOME LISTENING / MODERN CLASSICAL / AMBIENT
12K
CD // £8.99

Stephan Mathieu presents his long awaited new album, this time for 12k. Accompanying the ‘Remain’ album for Line, also out this week, ‘A Static Place’ more or less defines the phrase “travelling without moving” in sublime style, placing the listener at the epicentre of a deeply affecting electro-acoustic soundscape. To paint this vivid imagery Stephan plays ancient 78rpm recordings of music fromt he late Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque era through two mechanical acoustic HMV Model 102 gramophones and records their output with a pair of customized mics. These sounds are then transformed into the blissed aural catharsis you hear through spectral analysis and convolution processes. To the untrained ear the academic stuff is just that, while the music is simply of the most arresting, awe-inspiring nature, similar in some respects to the work of Philip Jeck or the Caretaker but with an intensely detailed adroitness that’s unmistakably Mathieu. Essentially we’re listening to the resonance of archaic instruments played long time ago, structured into esoteric shapes and gaseous forms the likes of which their original creators could barely fathom, but would still recognise as the beautifully alien sounds they are. Highly Recommended.



SUN CITY GIRLS
Gum Arabic
INDIE / ROCK / ALTERNATIVE
ANNIHAYA
CD // £12.99

*Packaged in a 26cm x 40cm, gold-foil numbered limited edition of 1000 copies, full colour fold out poster portraying the musician, the work of local artist Hatem Imam, with liner notes in both Arabic and English* “The Bishop brothers continue to dig into the Girls’ archives from before Charles Gocher’s tragic disappearance in 2007. In this new offering they revisit North African songs from Morocco to the Mid-East and beyond, interpreting them with their own distinctive style. All tracks on this CD are cover songs from Sun City Girl’s repertoire, several frequently performed by the group live for more than 20 years. Several cuts were inspired by found unmarked cassettes and radio recordings made in Egypt and Morocco by Alan Bishop in the early 1980’s. The original song titles and composers of the radio-inspired arrangements are unknown. SCG created their own song titles and rearranged the music, at times radically, to fit their vision. The rest of the tracks are by various artists from the Middle East and North Africa. One track, “Wild World of Animals” is an African piece written for the theme of an American television show by the same name from the 1970s.”



MICHEL POTAGE
Occupé
SOUNDTRACKS / LIBRARY / EARLY ELECTRONIC
Alga Marghen
LP // £18.99

Following their sumptuous Eliane Radigue edition last month, Alga Marghen presents a remarkable artifact of the French 1970s avant-garde, available on vinyl (or any other format) for the first time! ‘Occupé’ is an effective analog to Jac Berrocal’s cult ‘Paralleles’ LP of free jazz from the same year, 1977, but was mysteriously shelved making this a genuine lost jewel of the French underground. In close collaboration with Potage, the label have conceived a new layout for the LP with original photos of the recording session and and eight-page booklet with further photos and lyrics (in French, naturally), bringing to life an indescribably unique and fascinating session of musique concrète and free jazz, or simply experimental avant-garde, covering exhilarating vocal techniques, calamitous, exotic, screeching instrumentation, passages recorded in a car (Matthew Herbert, you’ve been sprung) and consistent, urgent narrative from multiple voices. Under the command of Potage’s cryptic, magic vision, the illustrious ten-person line-up includes the pioneering Jac Berrocal (trumpet, valve trombone, Tibetan oboe, percussions), Pierre Bastian (bass, Tibetan reed instruments, trumpet, voice), the father of French free jazz Bernard Vitet (bugle, trumpet, reed instruments, violin, voice), Roger Ferlet (trumpet, slide trombone, voice), Claude Parle (accordion, reed instruments, voice), Françoise Achard (voice, chant, Lao mouth organ, balano, rainstick), the legendary producer and sound engineer Daniel Deshays (voice), poet Jean-Marie Gibbal (voice) and notably a Ford Break (engine, speed, brakes, light etc.) “Michel Potage was co-founder with Berrocal of the d’Advantage label in 1976, he played in the first Catalogue band (with Jac Berrocal and Jean-Françoise Pauvros), a performer close to Julian Beck’s Living Theatre on one side and to James Chance’s no-wave Contortions on the other, musique concrète avant-gardist and poet of destroyed lyricism… The sound was restored from the original masters by Daniel Deshays. Edition limited to 385 copies…” Highly recommended!

Singles of the Week



JULIO BASHMORE
Everyone Needs A Theme Tune
DUBSTEP / GRIME / FUNKY
PMR Records
12″ // £7.99

**Includes fold-out poster** Killer and diverse four-tracker from Señor Bashmore, the first for new London label, PMR Records. Most notably Julio diverts his energies into two new areas with the cannily dubbed-out disco triplets of ‘Everyone Needs A Theme Tune’ and even a slouchy future boogie cruise on ‘The Horn That Time Forgot’. Back in more familiar terrain, ‘Battle For Middle You’ infuses a DirtyBird style deep burner with a sweetly filtered Detroit drop and ‘Ask Yourself’ floats off on a bed of 808 bass hits and breezy tropical synth pads. Very nice indeed.



TIN MAN
Acid Test 01
TECHNO / HOUSE
Absurd Recordings
12″ // £8.99

Tin Man releases are seriously prized possessions around these parts. His first release since the ace ‘Scared’ LP on White Denim features a pair of superb instrumental acid numbers backed with an outstanding remix by Donato Dozzy. ‘Nonneo’ is very much in the vein of his earlier releases for Global A and Keys Of Life, masterfully enveloping exotic House drums with rubbed and teased acid melodies in distinguished fashion. ‘Accumulated Acid’ is perhaps closer to his more recent experiments, a slow and craftily half-stepped acid progression with clinical production values. the master of Italian sleep-techno, Donato Dozzy, gives an anaesthetised remix of ‘Nonneo’ on the flip, numbing the drums for a more reserved, hypnotic and druggy effect. Hand-stenciled sleeve includes free download code redeemable from the label. Killer.



ITAL
Ital’s Theme
SYNTHWAVE / ELECTRO
100% Silk
12″ // £9.99

Jacked-off acid secretions from Ital aka Sex Worker – the 2nd release from NNF’s new 100% Silk label! Like some more frazzled cousin to the whole IDIB sound, Ital’s theme tune models itself on that misty mid-’80s period when disco was becoming House and everyone had massive, acid-fuelled gangbangs in clouds of amyl nitrate. Or so they said. Only, like those memories this tune has been warped to suit the makers own make-believe world and sounds all the better for it. The hypnotic ‘Queens’ is our joint, a glassy-eyed marimba and conga copulation with increasingly darker dub FX, and then there’s the soundtrack to Steve Reich’s kinky night out that he thought nobody knew about in ‘One Hit’. Awesome.



THE DEEEP
Muddy Tracks
SYNTHWAVE / ELECTRO
100% Silk
12″ // £9.99

100% Silk is the brand new, hugely promising sister label to underground heroes Not Not Fun. Adopting a cooler, sexier stance than its older brother, the label looks intent on making you dance to deliciously psyched beats – the first coming from Tornoto’s The Deeep. ‘Muddy Tracks’ is taken from their recent ‘Life Light’ cassette and features lead singer Isla Craig drifting like a barefoot Beth Gibbons over crumpled machines rhythms straight from the LA Vampires handbook. Over the course of these ten minutes it’s not quite clear whether to sit crosslegged and meditate, or levitate in the middle of the dancefloor, but either way it’s a good feeling. Fellow Toronto resident Brandon Hocura’s Grand Am Version dubs the vocals into a simmering silicon soup full of chirruping, glistening synths and a killer cowbell line right out of a Southport weekender circa 1987, kinda like Greg Wilson on mescaline, not ecstacy, while Guy Dallas does some trippy but tongue-in-cheek ethno acid rub from the deeepest recesses of the chill out room. Killer.

This week’s releases in full!
sorted by genre | See all
BASIC CHANNEL / DUB TECHNO
See all
MARTIN SCHULTE
Silent Stars
RARE NOISE RECORDS
CD // £11.99

Martin Schulte is something of a prolific artist in the deep/minimal electronic arena, reaching his seventh album ‘Silent Start’ in the space of only five years. With nods to the classic Chain Reaction works of Monolake, Scion, or Fluxion ‘Silent Start’ cycles through ten tracks of solidly executed and deeply anonymous techno.
BEATS / DOWNTEMPO / BOOGIE
See all
1000NAMES
Before Sunrise EP
Black Acre
12″ // £5.99

Black Acre’s Bulgarian anomalies 1000Names jam on two drag disco aces backed with slump-hop remix by Steve Lynx and Hellrazor. The sensually slow groove of ‘Before Sunrise’ is only a few shades away from the Balkan disco of Sare Havlicek but with a more modern twist, while you could almost imagine Danielle Baldelli spinning ‘Kaleidoscope’ at the cosmic club. Steve Lynx and Hellrazor chime in with a stoned-flow rerub of…
AARDVARCK / KUBUS
Gloom
EAT CONCRETE
12″ // £7.99

Aardvarck goes one step on from his Bloom series with the 1st Gloom session, split with fellow Dutch beat maker, Kubus. The agenda is all about proper electronic dirt rhythms, The Pig playing tricky games with the Hip Hop styles of his recent Eat Concrete releases, and Kubus crushing industrial strength beats into an agitated, rowdy tempered fusion of dubstep and the roughest electronic HipHop. Hand-stamped white labels, limited to…
GHOSTPOET
Peanut Butter Blues and Melancholy Jam
Brownswood Recordings
LP // £12.99

MC/producer Ghostpoet introduced himself to much acclaim with the Michachu-starring ‘The Sound Of Strangers’ free EP in 2010. He turns his debut album ‘Peanut Butter Blues & Melancholy Jam’ over to Gilles Peterson’s Brownswood Recordings, featuring a curiously idiosyncratic blend of electronic HipHop and shoegaze-y rock with darkly personal lyrics. Standout moments for us are found on the moody, dubstep-influenced ‘Gaaasp’ and ‘Us Against Whatever Ever’ with its swelling strings…
GHOSTPOET
Peanut Butter Blues and Melancholy Jam
Brownswood Recordings
CD // £10.99

MC/producer Ghostpoet introduced himself to much acclaim with the Michachu-starring ‘The Sound Of Strangers’ free EP in 2010. He turns his debut album ‘Peanut Butter Blues & Melancholy Jam’ over to Gilles Peterson’s Brownswood Recordings, featuring a curiously idiosyncratic blend of electronic HipHop and shoegaze-y rock with darkly personal lyrics. Standout moments for us are found on the moody, dubstep-influenced ‘Gaaasp’ and ‘Us Against Whatever Ever’ with its swelling strings…
OL
Kurilovo EP
Faces Records
7″ // £6.99

**Limited to 500 copies** Bumping thump ‘n grind 4-tracker from Russian producer Oleg Buyanov aka Ol, reppin’ the new HipHop sound of Moscow. Main attractions are the severely warped subs and Ras G-like textured arrangement of ‘Forbidden Flow’ and the twinkling soul infusion of ‘Eddie’. We reckon fans of Flying Lotus, Samiyam or Onra will be on this like dibble on a doughnut.
BOOKS
See all
PIERRE HENRY
Pierre Henry’s House Of Sounds
GILKA
Hardcover Book + CD // £45.99

Incredible 217-page hardcover book documenting Pierre Henry’s legendary ‘House Of Sound’ in Paris, plus a CD including four previously unreleased works. The 84 year old French composer should need scant introduction to electronic music aficionados and musicians, but for everyone else we’ll give a brief one anyway – Henry is widely acknowledged as a pioneer of musique concrète, creating some of the genre’s earliest known compositions in cooperation with Pierre…
CLICKS / GLITCH
See all
MINORU SATO
Irregularity Homogeneity
Senufo Editions
LP // £13.99

**White Vinyl** “One-sided Lp of recordings from the installation of the same name (from a series of works, started in 1991, using fluorescent lamps).” Using solar cells, a flickering half-broken lamp, loudspeaker, electro-luminescene sheets and silkscreened acrylic panel Minoru has created a side which sounds like a lab rat nudging a plugged in 1/4″ jack for food. “Something of which “lies outside the domain where it is possible to carry…
ESELSOHR
Pause Peuls
Senufo Editions
Cassette // £6.99

“Slowed down ‘Donndolooru’ recordings from Niger, from ‘The Peuls’ LP (EMI Musical Atlas, 1976), re-played through a CDJ in pause mode. The fluctuating clicking pulses and polyrhythms on this cassette are the results of the artifacts procued by the pause button combined with random playing and panning speeds. realised by Eselsohr, Giuseppe Ielasi and Jennifer Veillerobe, Autumn 2010…” Pro-duplicated C20. Letterpressed sleeve by Ben Owen/Middle Press. Numbered edition of 100…
DARK AMBIENT / DRONE / METAL
See all
JAZKAMER
Chestnut Thornback Tar (Limited Vinyl Edition)
Type
LP // £10.99

*Vinyl-only edition, comes with a bonus full length album/mix on CD* Lasse Marhaug and John Hegre’s Jazkamer troupe are among the most respected and prolific members of the infamous Norwegian noise/metal scene. They love making a f**king good racket. During 2010 they undertook an ambitious project to release an album of new material every month for 12 months via a subscription service. ‘Chestnut Thornback Tar’ was originally the May edition…
GREGG KOWALSKY
Battery Townsley
Senufo Editions
LP // £14.99

*Beautiful clear vinyl edition, limited to 280 copies and individually numbered* The ninth release from Giuseppe Ielasi’s Senufo Editions features Gregg Kowalsky’s captivating performance consisting of 10 cassette players positioned inside the bunker of Battery Townsley, a World War II coastal fortification in Marin County, California. Ielasi also contributes a ‘Studio Mix’ afterthought on the other side, but the real star of this LP is Kowalsky’s séance-like drones and spatial…
LITTLE SKULL
Little Skull
ELICA
LP // £20.99

*Sublime fold-out diorama packaging with pop-up ballerina, limited to 150 copies* This eponymous entry of haunted ballroom folk from Little Skull on the acclaimed Elica label is the first that’s crossed our radar. From the little info we can glean, Little Skull (sometimes known as L’il Skull) has released a handful of privately pressed lathe cut vinyl with similarly sublime packaging and a couple CD’s for Students Of Decay, which…
DAUGHTERS OF THE SUN
Ghost With Chains
NOT NOT FUN
LP // £15.99

Evocative side of primordial psyche mantras from Daughters Of The Sun. ‘Ghost with Chains’ was summoned into being in August ’09 at Nichollet Park Recording services in the Minnesota by one Collin Gorman Weiland – who put out that deadly 7″ on Downwards not long ago (and we mistakenly thought was from the North East of England – sorry, son) – and floats between seven tracks of psyche-rock with ghostly…
COH
Iiron
Editions Mego
2LP // £14.99

One of electronic music’s most unpredictable artists turns to the eternal dark forces of metal for inspiration on ‘IIron’. Occurring 10 years after the original ‘Iron’ on his own Wavetrap label, Ivan Pavlov has returned to his illicitly made Soviet-era metal recordings, alloying them with recent guitar tracks made at York University’s Music Research centre and a dash of his cold, black humour to bend the genre into fascinatingly malleable…
COH
Iiron
Editions Mego
CD // £12.99

One of electronic music’s most unpredictable artists turns to the eternal dark forces of metal for inspiration on ‘IIron’. Occurring 10 years after the original ‘Iron’ on his own Wavetrap label, Ivan Pavlov has returned to his illicitly made Soviet-era metal recordings, alloying them with recent guitar tracks made at York University’s Music Research centre and a dash of his cold, black humour to bend the genre into fascinatingly malleable…
SUBLAMP
In Our Hiding Voice
HIBERNATE
CD // £6.99

Sublamp’s ‘In Our Hiding Voice’ occupies a desolate nether zone between doom metal, ambient/noise and drone. In the company of Hibernate records’ roster it strikes us as one of their darker releases. From isolationist opener ‘Understairs’, the low frequency rumble and viscous haar of ‘Dear Carpetfoot’ looms into view, perhaps sharing a kindred, blackened soul with Danny Saul’s ‘Kinison – Goldthwait’ album, while ‘We Sleep In A Room-Shaped Hole’ masterfully…
DISCO / EDITS / FUNK
See all
WESTWOOD/CASH
Psycho For Your Love
PEOPLES POTENTIAL UNLIMITED
12″ // £9.99

Choice reissue of seminal Detroit player Danan Potts’ ‘Psycho For Your Love’. As the story goes, Danan was knocking around the Recording Institute of Detroit where Juan Atkins was a student and he soon picked up some traits from the man, incorporating them with influences gleaned from sessions under George Clinton, resulting in these two tracks of pinpoint precise machine rhythms and deeply greazy funk licks. Also includes two slick…
PETE DRAKE & HIS TALKING STEEL GUITAR
The Spook
Jazzman
7″ // £4.99

Mad reissue from the Jazzman cats; a ltd pressing of Pete Drake’s exotic steel guitar excursions ‘The Spook’ and ‘Oriental Twist’. Drake has some fairly staggering credentials, including playing guitar on the Tammy Wynette’s ‘Stand By Your Man’ and Bob Dylan’s ‘Lay Lady Lay’, but these songs are wantonly way weirder than either of those. As an early adopter of the talk box steel guitar technique, Drake was clearly on…
ETTA JAMES
Nobody Loves You Like Me
Jukebox Jam Series
7″ // £6.99

Another cherry-picked doozy on the Jukebox Jam series, presenting Etta James’ hidden treasure ‘Nobody Loves You Like Me’ backed with an alternate take of the jiving rocker ‘Tough Love’. The A-side is an enchanting, moody, mid-tempo blues tune which originally appeared on a poorly pressed ‘Best Of Etta James’ compilation. It, and the uptempo ‘Tough Lover’ are presented on 45rpm vinyl for the first time under a Modern Records logo….
THE IMPERIAL WONDERS
Love Me To The Music
ROYAL ESSENCE
7″ // £7.99

Burning modern soul tracks from ’83, the debut release on Arizona’s Royal Essence Records. A-side ‘Love Me To The Music’ is uptempo with brash vocal harmonies and freaky P-Funk licks B-Side ‘Be My Hostage’ more of a rubbery disco soul killer with blazing falsetto and belting chorus.
THE SIDEWINDERS
Flatfoot Hustlin’
Jazzman
LP // £18.99

No.11 in Jazzman’s questing Holy Grail Series is The Sidewinders’ mid-’70s rare funk obscurity ‘Flatfoot Hustlin’. A professional touring band with many years experience on the circuit, The Sidewinders weirdly enough happened to cut this album at an unheated studio in Nova Scotia, Canada – hardly the place you expect this kinda soul heat to come from! The full story behind the album is covered in an exclusive interview in…
THE SIDEWINDERS
Flatfoot Hustlin’
Jazzman
CD // £12.99

No.11 in Jazzman’s questing Holy Grail Series is The Sidewinders’ mid-’70s rare funk obscurity ‘Flatfoot Hustlin’. A professional touring band with many years experience on the circuit, The Sidewinders weirdly enough happened to cut this album at an unheated studio in Nova Scotia, Canada – hardly the place you expect this kinda soul heat to come from! The full story behind the album is covered in an exclusive interview in…
TINPONG / PROPER HEAT / VARIOUS
The Array Vol. 2 EP
NANG
12″ // £5.99

Taster 12″ for the 2nd volume of Nang’s Array series, featuring tracks from Bottin, Toby Tobias, Proper Heat and Space remixed by Justus Köhncke. It’s a pretty camp affair, this one. Bottin presents Tinpong with ‘Jabberwock (Dub Mix)’ a slice of uptempo NRG disco-pop, next to a slick cut from Nang’s new signings, Proper Heat. Toby Tobias gives one of his downtempo specials on ‘Fluffy Fruit’ and Justus Köhncke reworks…
VARIOUS / NANG
The Array Vol. 2
NANG
CD // £12.99

Nang’s 2nd label round-up reduces their recent schedule into thirteen of their most crucial Nu Disco cuts from Danielle Baldelli & DJ Rocca, Lusty Zanzibar, Toby Tobias and more. Highlights drop in the form of Radome’s remix of Beppe Loda’s late ’80s slow rocker ‘Counter’, Toby Tobias’ buttered boogie joint ‘Fluffy Fruit’, Baldelli & Rocca’s Italo modulations in ‘RoBa Che Scotta’ and the deep Scando-pop cheese of Nuuro’s ‘Avila’.
VARIOUS / NEEDWANT
Future Disco Vol. 4: Neon Nights
NEEDWANT
2CD // £12.99

Double disc round up of 21st Century disco compiled by MoS’s Sean Brosnan. The mixed 1st disc sets the scene with Greg Wilson’s remix of Escort’s ‘Cocaine’, running through 16 bar-paced tracks from Jacques Renault, Ray Mang, The Revenge, Soul Clap, Wild Geese, and Holy Ghost and more. The 2nd includes ten cherry-picked bits from the 1st disc in unmixed form, including Filipsson’s charming ‘Escape From New York’ cover.
DUBSTEP / GRIME / FUNKY
See all
JAMES BLAKE
James Blake
Atlas Recordings
2LP // £19.99

*Vinyl edition includes two tracks not on the CD version* James Blake’s eponymous debut is probably the most discussed album of the last 6 months, and set to be among the best of the next 12. It’s kinda hard to comprehend his metamorphosis from electro-acoustic dubstep outsider in 2009 to urban blues hero in 2011, but one thing has become clearly apparent: this is one artist with a consistently arresting…
JAMES BLAKE
James Blake
Atlas Recordings
CD // £9.99

James Blake’s eponymous debut is probably the most discussed album of the last 6 months, and set to be among the best of the next 12. It’s kinda hard to comprehend his metamorphosis from electro-acoustic dubstep outsider in 2009 to urban blues hero in 2011, but one thing has become clearly apparent: this is one artist with a consistently arresting musical vision. He’s been compared to Jamie Woon, but for…
JULIO BASHMORE
Everyone Needs A Theme Tune
PMR Records
12″ // £7.99

**Includes fold-out poster** Killer and diverse four-tracker from Señor Bashmore, the first for new London label, PMR Records. Most notably Julio diverts his energies into two new areas with the cannily dubbed-out disco triplets of ‘Everyone Needs A Theme Tune’ and even a slouchy future boogie cruise on ‘The Horn That Time Forgot’. Back in more familiar terrain, ‘Battle For Middle You’ infuses a DirtyBird style deep burner with a…
MIZZ BEATS
Are We The Dictators?
Eglo Records
12″ // £6.99

Mizz Beats adds her name to the Eglo roll call with a wickedly diverse 5-track EP. Since the mid ’00s she’s established an enviable rep with beats for D Double E, Jammer, Wiley and the Antisocial and Deep Medi labels, all displaying her dextrous, infectious bend of P-funked chip music and bass. With considerable support from label heads Alex Nut and Floating Points, ‘Are We The Dictators’ confidently twirls from…
ILLUM SPHERE
Dreamstealin’ EP
TECTONIC
12″ // £5.49

Supremely strange and heavy new single from Illum Sphere backed with a smart Indigo remix. A-side ‘Dream Stealin’ forces through a vortex of acousmatic voices and severely warped electronics before spurting into breathlessly high-velocity rhythms, narcotic drones and finishing with a cyber-boogie resolution. On the flip ‘Blood Music’ is more stable, engineered with a twitchin’ 2-step bounce, embedded with more serene choral voices and a Fly Lo-esque sense of psychedelia….
BAD AUTOPSY
Ginmixer (Scratcha DVA Remix) / Ginmixer (Jam City Remix)
Ramp Recordings
12″ // £11.99

**ORANGE VINYL** Jam City and Scratcha DVA spike Bad Autopsy’s ‘Gin Mixer’ with Eski and ruder Funky styled remixes on a dapper orange wax! The original is a bit of a banger, unruly and kinetic, but the remixes split in two other direction. Scratcha DVA’s eases the rhythm with his rolling bassline sound and less frantic snares for a weighty DJ tool track, while Jam City diverts the energy into…
CYRUS
Manhatten Blues / Decisions
Deep Medi
12″ // £6.49

Heavyweight dubstep burial tracks from Cyrus! It should be apparent by now that Cyrus’s productions for Deep Medi are also his best. On the A-side ‘Manhattan Blues’ pairs shatterproof dub chords on the offbeat with foundation crumbling subs while the drums take turns to lurch forward with dance intensifying stature. ‘Decisions’ on the flip is just nuts! Imagine two Distance and Coki tracks sparring in a hall of mirrors, drums…
VARIOUS / EXIT RECORDS
Mosaic Vol. 1
Exit Records
4 x 12″ + CD // £21.99

**4LP double gatefold, old skool D&B styles – comes with the CD edition of the album inside** Much-anticipated debut label comp from dBridge’s Exit Records, presenting eight cherry-picked cuts from the 22-track CD version (which is also included here), optimized for one track per side of vinyl. Making the vinyl cut we find tracks from Commix, Indigo, Skream, Loxy & Resound, Genotype, Code 3, Skeptical and Abstract Elements, all primed…
VARIOUS / EXIT RECORDS
Mosaic Vol. 1
Exit Records
2CD // £12.99

Much-anticipated debut label comp from dBridge’s Exit Records, featuring 22 exclusive tracks from Scuba, Indigo, Commix, Instra:mental, Distance, ASC, Synkro and many more. It’s a testament to dBridge’s A&R skill and vision that there are 20 individual, but similarly minded artists involved, setting the label parameters beyond D&B tempo constraints to investigate something more esoteric and rarified; Exit Records as a mood or feeling rather than a defined geometry. The…
THINK
Private Universe
NEW MOON
12″ // £6.49

Superb debut from Polish producer, Think and New Moon Recordings, b/w a dynamic Jack Sparrow remix. ‘Private Universe’ is one of three attention grabbing tracks here, a lean but spacious dubtech strider with lush aquatic sound design somewhere between Scuba and Phaeleh. ‘Short Warm Moments’ presents captivating vox from Novika sailing over a more laidback rollers rhythm akin to F productions, which Jack Sparrow reworks with impressively upgraded production values….
SPOOKY / VARIOUS
Quadrant EP
OIL GANG
12″ // £5.99

A BIG look from Oil Gang, dropping four ballistic Grime instrumentals from Spooky, Darq E Freaker, Mistayif and Splurt. We just can’t get over Splurt’s devastating ‘The Return VIP (Mega Remix)’, and it would appear that Starkey and Mosca have the same feelings, with Starkey wheeling it twice on a recent radio show! Also up there is Darq E Freaker’s classic cut-up ‘Rhythm & Slags’, a sidewinding romp from Sppoky…
POLICY
Specialty Party
Rush Hour
12″ // £7.99

Shocking debut entry from NYC’s Policy on Rush Hour’s excellent Current Direct series. Apparently signed up on the strength of a demo, part time movie director, Policy has a sharply defined programming style all of his own. This is best heard on ‘Specialty Party’ where flickers of not-quite garage patterns fall into bewildering, mutant Brokebeat formations, kinda like the runty offspring of Falty DL. With ‘Lights Over Fort Lee’ he…
SBTRKT
Step In Shadows
Young Turks
12″ // £8.99

We’re privy to a moodier side of SBTRKT on the four tracks of ‘Step In Shadows’ following relatively exuberant drops for Grizzly, Brainmath and Ramp of late. The lurking Reese bass and clipped, minimal swing of ‘Look At Stars’ is a straight winner to open with, before he chases that particular dragon into the bittersweet darkside roll of ‘Step In Shadows’, primed for lost-in-it 3am moments. On the flip ‘Colonise’…
DJ MADD / MATT-U
ARPZ3000 / Hidden
SUBWAY
12″ // £6.49

New split from Budapest’s bassbin botherers, DJ Madd and Matt-U. On ‘Arpz3000’ DJ Madd rolls off a tight electroid halfstepper with shooting spumes of synthline presumably from his titular Arp. Matt-U belies his D&B background on the flip with the growling, concentrated pressure of ‘Hidden’ on a 140bpm tip.
KROMESTAR
Jabber Jawz / Badman RIP
One Gun Salute
12″ // £6.99

One Gun Salute is quickly becoming the place to go for the rudest dubstep rave, what with their reserve of wreckers from Hatcha & Lost, Seven and The Aliens. OGS003 comes from the OG rave don, Kromestar, going seriously overboard in the best way possible with the rampant synths of ‘Jabber Jawz’ and the slightly more controlled burial tune, ‘Badman RIP’.
LURKA
Tempted
BLACK BOX
12″ // £5.99

Black Box measure out the tightly wound debut 12″ from Lurka, following drops from Hatcha, N-Type, Seven, Madd and more. Expect leaden, hulking halfstep with growling mid-range bass. Vinyl cut look pretty.
MATT-U
Watchin’ U EP
SUBWAY
12″ // £6.49

Fine three-tracker from Budapest’s Matt-U in dubstep mode. ‘Watchin’ U’ is one for the Instra:mental lovers, fixing a yearning vocal to hybrid electro/dubstep rhythm with powerful bass torque. ‘Down With You’ is fitted with a more feminine swing akin to the Antisocial Ents productions and the crushing ‘Magma’ suffuses spitting snares with a groundswell of heaving subbass to bowl out weak knees.
RANDOM PERSON
Computer Music / D Pad
Bad Acid
12″ // £5.99

Instrumental electronic HipHop/Dubstep hybrid from Random Person. ‘Computer Music’ bangs hanging HipHop drums into shape over squirting synths inna Lorn or Slugabed fashion, while the brief thrust of ‘D Pad’ twists the style some more. Dope acid tab sleeve.
RSS
Wife Her Up (Jack Sparrow / Jamie Grind Mixes)
Wall Of Sound
12″ // £6.49

Jack Sparrow and Jamie Grind weigh in with sparkling future dubstep remixes of RSS – a Sheffield based “fusion” band featuring that bloke from Reverend and The Makers. Nodding to the fractured, minimal rhythm blueprints of Hessle Audio’s Joe or Pearson Sound, Jack Sparrow gives a deftly lightfooted mix on the A-side, among his very best, whilst Jamie Grind makes great use of the original vocal with a fluidly edited…
SP:MC & LX ONE
Down / Judgement
Tempa
12″ // £5.49

One of the freshest pairings in purist dubstep deliver lushed-out heavyweights for Tempa. ‘Down’ takes it back to deep end ’06 styles with plummeting subs and suspended halfstep patterns enveloped within widescreen aquatic dub zones. ‘Judgement’ has a more purposeful dread personality, bowling lethal sub moves under crafty, double time fluctuations with a proper old skool Pinch sensibility. Deep and extra deadly gear.
ELECTRONIC
See all
SANSO-XTRO
Fountain Fountain Joyous Mountain
DIGITALIS
LP // £10.99

*Initial copies come on super-limited transparent yellow vinyl – mastered by Lawrence English and cut at D&M in Berlin* Sanso-Xtro’s long awaited follow-up to her 2005 debut for Type finally arrives, and sees an amazing development of sound. It’s a gentle, fragile collection of songs and instrumentals that remind us at one moment of Talk Talk, at others of old Alan Lomax recordings, with Gamelan and Kosmische experiments dropped in-between…
GHEDALIA TAZARTES
Granny Awards
Alga Marghen
LP // £16.99

My word, where to start with this total head-f*ck of a record? Well, first off, it’s another mind-expanding, previously unpublished jaw-dropper dug out by alga marghen, presenting ‘Granny Awards’ from the archives of the acclaimed French sound artist, Ghédalia Tazartès. The label are really spoiling us with their releases of late, this in particular being one of our very favourites. Verging on out-and-out craziness, but reigned-in with a masterfully steady…
BALAM ACAB
See Birds EP
Tri Angle
CD // £6.99

**Now available on CD** To say we’ve been waiting for this one would be a pretty big understatement. This is the debut release from two of the most exciting prospects in 2010, Drag House generator Balam Acab and Robin Carolan-ov-XXJFG’s hugely anticipated Tri Angle records. As has been documented pretty much everywhere from Pitchfork to the Guardian, Balam Acab make tormented, ghoulish pop laden with mystic imagery and an unheimlich…
EXTREME / NOISE
See all
JOHN CAGE
Radio Music
Dirter
10″ // £7.99

Limited 10″ from Nurse With Wound’s Dirter label, featuring four performances of John Cage’s ‘Radio Music’ (1956) by members of Faust and Band Of Pain Production. “John Cage composed the piece “Radio Music” in 1956. It is scored n 8 parts (A-H) with each part to be performed either individually or together with other parts as an ensemble. The performers follow a score that is a sequence of radio tunings…
FOLK / AMERICANA
See all
THE MEMORY BAND
Oh My Days
Hungry Hill
CD // £9.99

Now the folktronica movement has come and gone, many of its leading lights have sunk into the background without so much as a squeal. Not so, The Memory Band, who have never really been a band happy to disappear without fanfare. This latest LP shows the band at their most ambitious with Stephen Cracknell leading a veritable circus troupe of London’s folk elite. The music has now managed to step…
HOME LISTENING / MODERN CLASSICAL / AMBIENT
See all
STEPHAN MATHIEU
A Static Place
12K
CD // £8.99

Stephan Mathieu presents his long awaited new album, this time for 12k. Accompanying the ‘Remain’ album for Line, also out this week, ‘A Static Place’ more or less defines the phrase “travelling without moving” in sublime style, placing the listener at the epicentre of a deeply affecting electro-acoustic soundscape. To paint this vivid imagery Stephan plays ancient 78rpm recordings of music fromt he late Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque era through…
HAKOBUNE
Away From The Lunar Waters
HIBERNATE
CD // £6.99

‘Away From Lunar Waters’ is Takahiro Yorifuji’s 4th full length album of ambient guitar and drone music as Hakobune. It was crafted with a stripped down setup of guitar, effects pedal and multi-track recorder, but like the best of its ilk, manages to elicit something far grander and more involving than his equipment list. His experimental playing drifts from blissed-out inertia to swarming, almost noisy ambient intensity on ‘Photometry’ and…
TAYLOR DEUPREE / SAWAKO / MINAMO / VARIOUS
Tasogare: Live in Tokyo
12K
CD // £8.99

12k compilations are always a treat, and this bumper set of live recordings is no different. Collecting five sets from performances of Tokyo, we get long-form improvisations and compositions from Moskitoo, Sawako + Hofli, Solo Andata, Minamo and Taylor Deupree to boot. Already with names like this you should know you’re getting quality, and the tracks don’t disappoint. Minamo kicks off proceeding with an effortlessly warming ten minutes of guitar…
INDIE / ROCK / ALTERNATIVE
See all
SONIC YOUTH
Simon Werner A Disparu
SYR
LP // £13.99

**Includes free MP3 download card and bonus track download redeemable from the label** It’s always cause for excitement when a new SYR record hits the shelves. Admittedly I’m a paid-up member of the Sonic Youth can do no wrong club, but I do appreciate that historically the SYR series is where we find the band at their most arresting. ‘Simon Werner A Disparu’ is the ninth in the series and…
SUN CITY GIRLS
Gum Arabic
ANNIHAYA
CD // £12.99

*Packaged in a 26cm x 40cm, gold-foil numbered limited edition of 1000 copies, full colour fold out poster portraying the musician, the work of local artist Hatem Imam, with liner notes in both Arabic and English* “The Bishop brothers continue to dig into the Girls’ archives from before Charles Gocher’s tragic disappearance in 2007. In this new offering they revisit North African songs from Morocco to the Mid-East and beyond,…
MOGWAI
Mexican Grand Prix
Rock Action Records
7″ // £3.99

One of the highlights from Scottish post-rockers Mogwai’s new full-length, ‘Mexican Grand Prix’ takes the band’s well worn sound and reinvigorates it with the ghost of Krautrock past. The influence of Neu! and Electralane hover around the track, but this is a Mogwai beast from beginning to end, and should bring a few new listeners to the fold. The gloomy piano-led B-side exclusive ‘Slight Domestic’ is where my money’s at…
YOUNG MAGIC
You With Air / Sparkly
Carpark
7″ // £3.99

Carpark’s new signing Young Magic seems to have everything it takes to move into the big-league. That post Animal Collective clunky electronic charm, the MGMT-lite hum-along synth melodies and a nod to British bass music that’s more than just passive. In fact these productions are probably closer to what people thought James Blake’s album was actually going to sound like. Makes sense to me that he should join the Carpark…
FAUST
Something Dirty
Bureau B
LP // £13.99

“Faust have been around for over 40 years. Since 2007, the line-up of the Krautrock legends has comprised founder members Jean-Hervé Peron and Zappi Diermaier, the English musician James Johnston, founder of the brutish blues rockers Gallon Drunk and long-standing member of Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds, plus the English painter, filmmaker, author and musician Geraldine Swayne. On “Something Dirty” the creativity and musical ideas of these four personalities…
JAZZ / RELATED
See all
KELAN PHIL COHRAN AND LEGACY
African Skies
Captcha Records
CD // £10.99

In 1993, shortly after the death of Herman Blount (Sun Ra), Phil Cohran and his band, Legacy, composed an inspired and inspiring tribute to his close friend and former mentor. As you may be aware, Cohran records are few and far between. Aside from the more recent reissue of his Zulu 45s collection, ‘African Skies’ is his first new record to be released since his 1969 Malcolm X memorial. This…
SUN RA
Space Probe
ART YARD
CD // £12.99

Well this is a bit of a treat, I know there have been countless Sun Ra reissues released in the last few years but bear with me, seriously! Recorded in 1969-1970 ‘Space Probe’ is one of the rarer and more unusual shards of the Sun Ra discography. We should all be aware that the Saturn-born alien was a master of early electronic music (specifically the monstrous Mini Moog), but here…
JUNGLE / DRUM & BASS
See all
ASC & VACCINE
Machines / Bleep Test
Samurai Red Seal
12″ // £6.99

**GOLD VINYL** ASC and Vaccine team up on the one side, backed with a solo ASC cut. Together, the husbandXwife duo come with a dynamic strongback stepper on ‘Machines’, while ASC’s solo finds a blend of Krust’s Brizzle minimalism and Photek’s masterful funk on ‘Bleep Test’.
ENEI, EASTCOLORS AND NOEL
Cracker / Danger Dance
Critical Music
12″ // £6.49

Harder-edged, Eastern European D&B with finesse from three producers, Estonia’s Enei, and Russians, Eastcolour and Noel. They strike in formation with the metal-tipped tech-step of ‘Cracker’ while Enei goes alone on the twitchy halfstep roller ‘Danger Dance’, schizophrenically cutting between breakbeat tearouts and shackled 808s in an old-meets-new skool style. Support from Rockwell, Icicle, Alix Perez, Ulterior Motive, Hype and yer Ma.
NEED FOR MIRRORS
Super Earth EP
Nu Directions
2×12″ // £12.99

**SHIPS FRIDAY** Upfront 2×12″ promo copies of Need For Mirrors’ sophomore release. ‘Super Earth’ features four tracks of high definition D&B with a widescreen cinematic sensibility. The subs on ‘Moving Pictures’ are almost overwhelmingly powerful whilst ‘Screenplay and ‘Panoramic Views’ share a kindred sensitivity for vivid D&B landscapes with Consequence or ASC. Support comes from DJ Krust, Commix, Lynx, Storm, Spirit, Digital, Artificial Intelligence and more.
MINIMAL / DANCEFLOOR
See all
THOMAS FEHLMANN
Titan One / DFM
Kompakt
12″ // £6.99

In collaboration with the Montreal Symphony Orchestra and Berlin’s Benjamin Meyers, the venerable Thomas Fehlmann pays tribute to Gustav Mahler on a majestic reinterpretation of ‘Symphony No.1 (Titan)’. Consolidating the worlds of classical music and electronics is no small undertaking but one that Fehlmann is clearly capable of, organising an opulent swell of synths and strings very much in the vein of Wolfgang Voigt’s Gas project, even replete with a…
SOUNDTRACKS / LIBRARY / EARLY ELECTRONIC
See all
MICHEL POTAGE
Occupé
Alga Marghen
LP // £18.99

Following their sumptuous Eliane Radigue edition last month, Alga Marghen presents a remarkable artifact of the French 1970s avant-garde, available on vinyl (or any other format) for the first time! ‘Occupé’ is an effective analog to Jac Berrocal’s cult ‘Paralleles’ LP of free jazz from the same year, 1977, but was mysteriously shelved making this a genuine lost jewel of the French underground. In close collaboration with Potage, the label…
SYNTHWAVE / ELECTRO
See all
ITAL
Ital’s Theme
100% Silk
12″ // £9.99

Jacked-off acid secretions from Ital aka Sex Worker – the 2nd release from NNF’s new 100% Silk label! Like some more frazzled cousin to the whole IDIB sound, Ital’s theme tune models itself on that misty mid-’80s period when disco was becoming House and everyone had massive, acid-fuelled gangbangs in clouds of amyl nitrate. Or so they said. Only, like those memories this tune has been warped to suit the…
THE DEEEP
Muddy Tracks
100% Silk
12″ // £9.99

100% Silk is the brand new, hugely promising sister label to underground heroes Not Not Fun. Adopting a cooler, sexier stance than its older brother, the label looks intent on making you dance to deliciously psyched beats – the first coming from Tornoto’s The Deeep. ‘Muddy Tracks’ is taken from their recent ‘Life Light’ cassette and features lead singer Isla Craig drifting like a barefoot Beth Gibbons over crumpled machines…
ULYSSES
Acid Reflux
THRONE OF BLOOD
12″ // £7.99

Neurotic Drum Band’s Ulysses serves three tracks of sqaushed acid house and chillout ‘trnica backed with a deep disco freid remix by Prins Thomas. Ulysses original ‘Implanted’ has an ace synthline reminding of Kassem Mosse, but more party-fied, while Prins Thomas finds his kink between frayed acid lines and live disco drums on the remix.
BRAIN MACHINE
Alpha Beta Gamma
TITAN’S HALO
12″ // £7.99

Epic kosmiche/Italo expedition from Guido Zen and Juan Trippe’s Brain Machine, co-piloted with remixes with Von Spar and Johan Agebjörn! The ten minute vastness of ‘Alpha Beta Gamma’ nods to both Schulze and Moroder and should command any dancefloor it’s sent to, while Von Spar give a neater, pop-sized version still with the triplet rhythm propulsion. We’ve got a bad man-crush on Johan Agebjörn’s productions so needless to say this…
VISIONS OF TREES
Sometimes It Kills
Moshi Moshi Records
7″ // £4.99

Vision of Trees are a London duo and though they’re likely to get lumped in with the glossy New York-isms of Telepathe and the like. There’s a distinct cold, British twist to these icy electro chillers, and that’s no bad thing. Yes please.
TURZI
Turzi
Record Makers
CD // £12.99

First UK CD issue of Turzi’s 2009 fusion of continental and Teutonic ’70s rock tropes, entitled ‘B’. Since their first LP in ’07 they’ve accrued some famous fans including Primal Scream’s Bobby Gillespie and and Brigitte Fontaine, both of whom make guest appearances. Lead by visionary multi-instrumentalist Romain Turzi, the group (we’re gonna have to write their names: Sky Over, Hard Dick Gunter, Judah Warsky and Arthur Rambo) are known…
TECHNO / HOUSE
See all
ISOLEE
Well Spent Youth
PAMPA RECORDS
CD // £10.99

Isolée albums only show up rarely, and Rajko Müller’s third set, ‘Well Spent Youth’ is an absolute peach. He’s been honing his silky-yet-abstract sound for over 15 years, delivering unquestionably definitive albums such as ‘Rest’ and ‘We Are Monster’ along the way whilst never straying from what makes his music so involving and subtly memorable – an otherworldly, organically soulful integrity and exceptional production values. These two factors have elevated…
ISOLEE
Well Spent Youth
PAMPA RECORDS
2LP // £16.99

Isolée albums only show up rarely, and Rajko Müller’s third set, ‘Well Spent Youth’ is an absolute peach. He’s been honing his silky-yet-abstract sound for over 15 years, delivering unquestionably definitive albums such as ‘Rest’ and ‘We Are Monster’ along the way whilst never straying from what makes his music so involving and subtly memorable – an otherworldly, organically soulful integrity and exceptional production values. These two factors have elevated…
STEFFI
Yours & Mine
OSTGUT TON
CD // £9.99

Superbly clean and classic sounding debut album from Panorama Bar resident and all round House music dynamo, Steffi. Since 2000 Steffi has run the ace Klakson label with Dexter, responsible for the era defining releases ‘I Don’t Care’, and since last year she’s branched out with the Dolly label, home to vital vinyl from Dexter, Jakob Korn and Tyrez. Her own productions have only emerged in the last couple of…
STEFFI
Yours & Mine
OSTGUT TON
2LP // £12.99

Superbly clean and classic sounding debut album from Panorama Bar resident and all round House music dynamo, Steffi. Since 2000 Steffi has run the ace Klakson label with Dexter, responsible for the era defining releases ‘I Don’t Care’, and since last year she’s branched out with the Dolly label, home to vital vinyl from Dexter, Jakob Korn and Tyrez. Her own productions have only emerged in the last couple of…
TIN MAN
Acid Test 01
Absurd Recordings
12″ // £8.99

Tin Man releases are seriously prized possessions around these parts. His first release since the ace ‘Scared’ LP on White Denim features a pair of superb instrumental acid numbers backed with an outstanding remix by Donato Dozzy. ‘Nonneo’ is very much in the vein of his earlier releases for Global A and Keys Of Life, masterfully enveloping exotic House drums with rubbed and teased acid melodies in distinguished fashion. ‘Accumulated…
OCTAVE ONE / SANDWELL DISTRICT
I Believe (Sandwell District Mix) / Daystar Rising (Aril Brikha Mix)
430 West
12″ // £8.99

Celebrating over twenty years of definitive Detroit dance music, Octave One turn two classics ‘I Believe’ and ‘Daystar Rising’ to Sandwell District and Aril Brikha for updated reworks. Sandwell District are repped by Regis and Function on the sensitively faithful ‘I Believe’ remix, augmenting the Burden Brothers’ trademark shuffle with up-to-the-minute yet totally classic values, delivering the piloerect effect in full. Aril Brikha’s remake of their classic ‘Daystar’ is more…
COS/MES
Naruto
King Kung Foo Records
12″ // £9.99

Hypnotic, exotic and psychedelic disco from Tokyo’s excellent Cos/Mes DJ/Producer duo for Ronny & Renzo’s King Kung Foo Records. With dubbed desert guitars somewhere between Ennio Morricone and Monte Cazzaza, a humid menagerie of bird calls and cooled-out disco swagger ‘Naruto’ is a lush, sublimely measured psych-disco track. Label heads, Belgium’s Ronny & Renzo, take the track to a more conventional techno space with a dark and minimal thruster marked…
SON OF SAM
Nature Makes A Mistake
RUNNING BACK
12″ // £7.99

Wave-fever has evidently infected the Running Back camp, hence this reissue of an ’84 electrodisco killer from Chris Bishop aka Son Of Sam, backed with an epic interstellar remix by Ame (with some help from Marcel Dettmann in the mix). ‘Nature Makes A Mistake’ was originally released on the cassette sampler ‘Sex & Bestiality’, and in it’s own little way defines something so timelessly futuristic about that era. However, that…
ISOLEE / ROBAG WRUHME
Taktell / Thora Vukk
PAMPA RECORDS
12″ // £6.99

Now on its sixth release, DJ Koze’s Pampa Records is shaping up to be a consistently beacon of quality in modern, tech-edged House music, especially with these two tracks from Isolée and Robag Wruhme. Isolée’s ‘Taktell’ is taken from his forthcoming ‘Well Spent Youth’ album (due on Pampa) and is every bit the subtly nuanced and graceful House groove you’d expect from this guy. Flip over and Herr Wruhme drops…
RICARDO MIRANDA & K JOY
Chicago House Sessions EP
NOBLE SQUARE
12″ // £6.99

Authentic Chi-town grooves from Chicago resident, Ricardo Miranda and vocalist K Joy. The last couple of years have seen Ricardo release on Rush Hour’s Hour House Is Your Rush series and Neroli records with his Latin Soul Brothers alias (besides a credit as Yonurican, but we’d couldn’t confirm if this is the same figure behind the massive Funky anthem ‘Boriken Soul’). Each cut here comes in two versions, the deeply…
WORLD
See all
VARIOUS / SUBLIME FREQUENCIES
Pakistan: Folk And Pop Instrumentals 1966-1976
Sublime Frequencies
2LP // £29.99

**Double gatefold, tip-on style jacket with sleeve notes** Sublime Frequencies peer through the brief window of Pakistani folk and pop produced between 1966-76 on their latest expedition. The album’s compiler, Stuart Ellis trawled the EMI Pakistan archives to pluck out 22 joyfully charming and unique fusions of “filmi”, folk and pop music with electrified instrumentation which was new to the region in 1966. To put this music in context we…