Dec 102010
 

Hello,

No rest for the wicked, as we take stock of another batch of outright killers from the likes of James Ferraro, Mark Fell, Xela and Honest Jon’s, among many, many others.

Honest Jon’s, one of the labels of the year, keep up a relentlessly impressive schedule with a 35-track CD and two double LP collections of East African music from the mid-1930s to the mid-1950s, plus an awesome album of Shangaan-style electro-gospel from Foster Manganyi. Although they span over half a century, both albums provide a head-wrecking journey of discovery that this label have become so good at delivering consistently. We urge you to check them out.

John Twells, aka Xela, heads up two drops for Digitalis, one alongside Zelienople’s Matt Christensen (as Twells & Christensen), and another sacrificial drone tape completing a special solo cycle. With Christensen, the vinyl-only ‘Coasts’ captures incredibly beautiful, mystical and foggy sessions from 2008, easily some of the most immersive recordings either artist has been involved in. Initial copies come on red vinyl too – while stocks last. Xela’s ‘The Sublime’ cassette, meanwhile, is a more personal excursion, exorcising his daemons in magickal fashion. 200 copies only!

From another label on everyone’s lips, James Ferraro and his Skaters buddy Spencer Clarke have floored us with two albums for Olde English Spelling Bee out this week. Ferraro’s ‘Night Dolls With Hairspray’ is another deeply unhinged listening experience, kind of like tuning into to Mr Belding’s in-skool FM station, from behind the bike sheds with a bag of glue. Monopoly Child Star Searchers’ ‘Bamboo For Two’, meanwhile, is an album of tropical drone rhythms somewhere between Terry Riley and call-centre hold music and dedicated to a parrot called Belafonte. Oh aye, and there’s a new Outer Limits 7″ from Sam Meringue, a must for fans of Autre Ne Veut!!!

Mark Fell’s Editions Mego debut ‘UL8’ is his 2nd album in as many weeks, and for our money even better than its predecessor on Raster Noton. Once again exploring stripped-down and refracted percussive structures, Fell takes apart archetypal Acid templates and re-wires them in mind-boggling fashion, creating an album that isn’t for everyone – but for followers of SND, this will blow your mind.

Planet Mu finally deliver the most substantial and crucial collection of Footwork to date on ‘Bangs & Works’ with no less than 24 essentials including DJ Elmoe’s ‘Whea Yo Ghost At…’ and RP Boo’s ‘Eraser’. Just. So. Good. Completely unrelated, but just as nutty, Soundway’s collection of leftfield jazz and traditional sounds from Thailand is also up there for the far-out noggins – if you’ve enjoyed Sublime Frequencies’ Thai excursions – make sure to check it out.

For the ‘floor, Illum Sphere’s excellent ‘The Plan Is Dead’ comes loaded with the outright killer ‘An Old Escape (Kill Them Kill)’ worth the cost of entry alone, while Gatekeeper follow their Fright debut with a more substantial and equally brilliant six-track EP full of Industrial/Italo anthems for Merok. Downliners Sekt scrunch up rhythms that sound like three records playing at once on the superb follow-up to one of our favourite 12″s this year with ‘We Make Hits, Not The Public’, and Jay Weed brings some sliq R&B/Funky heat for Oneman’s 502 label, following Fis-T’s monstrous ‘Night Hunter’.

Other highlights feature from Digital Mystikz, Geoff Mullen, Greg Davis and Zack Wallace’s Sun Circle project, Terror Danjah, Headhunter, Silkie, Scientist remixing dubstep originals from the likes of Shackleton, Kode 9, Loefah etc on an epic set for Tectonic, plus releases from Breton, Amiina, Bonnie Prince Billy, Machinefabriek, Floating Points Ensemble, Daft Punk, Redshape, and the brand new, third generation Buddha Machines!

have yourselves a wonderful week….

Peace! Nekkers…xx

Albums of the Week



TWELLS AND CHRISTENSEN
Coasts
DARK AMBIENT / DRONE / METAL
DIGITALIS
LP // £9.99

**Vinyl-only release, initial copies come on strictly limited red vinyl* Some two years in the making and evidently so, ‘Coasts’ is the compelling collaboration between John Twells (Xela) and Matt Christensen (Zelienople) for Digitalis Industries. The two like-minded souls have been recording their sessions in various forms for years, but the substantial nature of ‘Coasts’ meant it just had to be released into the wider world. These two tracks were recorded over a weekend in Chicago in 2008 and later mixed at John’s Seventh Door studio outside Boston, rendering two long-playing sides of foggy, ethereal drone and heavy-listening atmospheres with a petrified and spectral sensitivity. The opiated ambience of indistinct synth tones and hovering strings slowly seeps into bowed, bleak, lonely guitar notes on ‘The Crate’, dilapidated layers of ghostly crackle dry-foaming on the surface and dispersing with the the slow convective flow of electronic tones washing over the surface. The mood is ultimately calm and sublimated, almost freed of noticeable human intervention to sound like the pair just documented some immaculate aural phenomena. Their presence becomes far more apparent on ‘Burning Bridges Together’, not least for the ghostly vocals but also the tangibly expressive, cinematic chords and hand-sculpted ambient shapes looming in the inky expanses overhead. It’s just an incredible set of recordings – easily making this one of the most impressive projects either artist have been involved with. Highly recommended.



JAMES FERRARO
Night Dolls With Hairspray
ELECTRONIC
OLDE ENGLISH SPELLING BEE
LP // £13.99

**More untouchable smudged and trashed pop variants from James Ferraro – comes with with free download coupon redeemable from the label* Jim Ferraro has emerged from his dream dungeon (probably his mum’s basement) long enough to give Olde English Spelling Bee (officially the coolest label in the world right now according to Fact mag) a proper album of songs and that. ‘Night Dolls With Hairspray’ tacks the tackiest assortment of dual-deck cassette cut samples and flushes ’em in the most adulterated ectoplasmic gunk this side of Egon Spengler’s bedsheets. Entering this album you’ve gotta leave your super soakers and ten-gallon gatorade at the door if you wanna totally submit yourself to his malted zones and allow yourself to be intoxicated on the fumes of his slowly fermenting buckets of trash culture. With track titles as vividly evocative as ‘Buffy Honkerburg’s Answering Machine’ and ‘Killer Nerd’ and even a lyric sheet with lines like “In The Locker Room The Coach Is Having A Blast/ Sniffing The Undies Of His Last Class” this is a must for anyone who wishes their parents had fed them more drugs during Saved By The Bell. Fans of his ‘On Air’ hit, sign up now! Highly recommended. *



MARK FELL
UL8
ELECTRONIC
Editions Mego
CD // £12.99

Mark Fell albums are like busses – you spend ages waiting for one, then two come at once. ‘UL8’ arrives just a couple of weeks after the fantastic ‘Multistability’ set for Raster Noton and, dare we say it, takes his sound even further into the outer reaches of glacial, rhythmic experimentation. With SND, Fell has tended to explore the hidden complexities of stripped rhythms, juxtaposing them with disorientating tones and digital noise – here this theme is taken to the next logical stage as his pounding percussive patterns transform slowly over their duration, flipping their pitch and rhythm with little fanfare. Fell exhibits an impressive ability to pull apart early Chicago house rhythms and acid house forms and transform them into something wholly alien. The percussion is edged into almost Autechre-like realms of abstraction but never loses its particular sonic signature. Similarly, when experimenting with acid sounds, Fell takes the well-weathered analogue squelch into territories rarely heard. Florian Hecker (who is slyly referenced on ‘Acids In The Style of Rian Treanor’) might have taken the form to even more uncompromising extremes, but by dialling back the complexity, and leaving in a trace of sonic provenance, Fell’s explorations acquire a multi-fuctional quality that’s pretty much unparalleled in modern electronic music. He re-wires dancefloor music while nodding to his academic forefathers – without even a whiff of pretension. The album ends with Fell’s most full-bodied production since SND’s “Circa 1666” was released on the second Clicks and Cuts compilation almost a decade ago, and rounds off a diverse, hugely captivating listening experience with some style. 2010 might just have been the year of Editions Mego, and ‘UL8’ is the perfect conclusion to an extremely impressive run. Don’t miss.



FOSTER MANGANYI NA TINTSUMI TA TILO
Ndzi Teke Riendzo No.1
WORLD
Honest Jon’s Records
CD // £10.99

Foster Manganyi’s ‘Ndzi Teke Riendzo’ is Honest Jon’s compelling follow up to the shocking ‘Shangaan Electro’ comp of a few months back. Recorded in 2008 and originally released on cassette, it’s the work of a pastor from Giyani, Limpopo, South Africa, and shares much of the Shangaan sound’s preference for, dry, skittering drum machines, melodic marimba percussion, whistles, and those unmistakably South African vocal harmonies. But there’s one fundamental difference; the intentions behind the music. While the Nozinja productions of Shangaan are purpose built for partying, Foster conveys spiritual, religious messages through his personal brand of Electro-Gospel. But, like most folk outside of SA, we don’t have a clue what he’s saying and can only run with what we know – this album sounds and feels amazing. Generally the pace is slower than the breakneck Shangaan sound, but you will find uptempo essentials like the title track, translating as ‘I’m Taking A Journey’, and the flighty ‘Ndzi To Tivisela’ (I Will Keep On Praying), while the slower cuts such as ‘Zion’ and ‘Amen’ are filled with licks of high-life guitar and offer a more transcendent vibe for Foster to really sing it like he means it. However, regardless of the production palette, there’s something unmistakably pure and beautifuly traditional in this music that can’t be ignored. Highly recommended!



VARIOUS / HONEST JON’S RECORDS
Something Is Wrong: Vintage Recordings From East Africa
WORLD
Honest Jon’s Records
2CD // £14.99

Closing an immense year for Honest Jon’s, 35 precious selections from East Africa spanning the mid-1930s till the mid-1950s. Taking full advantage of unprecedented access to EMI’s treasured archives in Hayes, Middlesex, HJ’s drew from more than 400 sides in the HMV MA series: 10″ 78rpm ‘Native Records’, a set of recordings made in Africa, pressed in the UK and sent back to Africa, aimed at native Africans rather than the white colonialists or increasing Indian communities, all with the intention of raising record and gramophone sales. The tracks can be broadly split into three substyles, minstrelsy, percussion-based ensembles and taarab. Most fall into the former category, relating tales of punch-ups at rumba parties and covering subjects as diverse as sex, death and cut-off trousers, best exemplified in Ssekiomou’s strikingly urgent ‘Wireless’, a song about the arrival of wireless radio to Kampala and the flurry of excitement reflected in the rapidly bowed ostinato of his Ndingidi. Taarab was more popular with Swahili-speaking communities and those familiar with imported Indian and Arab Egyptian records, mostly defined by lilting melodies played on Oud, violins or Indian Harmonium with Arab-styled poetry. Influenced by an influx of Congolese musicians, the percussion-based ensembles account for a small but exhilarating section of the comp, including a spectacular big band Kenyan Calypso. As expected, the attention to detail and luxurious hard-cover book presentation is second to none, and the mind boggles at the amount of work gone into translating and compiling the extensive sleevenotes and accompanying photographs. All music lovingly restored at Abbey Road. Highly recommended!



MONOPOLY CHILD STAR SEARCHERS
Bamboo For Two
ELECTRONIC
OLDE ENGLISH SPELLING BEE
LP // £13.99

**A Hypnagogic supergroup of sorts with a blast of hallucinatory and tropical rhythmic synth adventures – new on OESB! Comes with free download coupon redeemable from the label** Seductively heavy-lidded inter-species avian-eroticism from the hypnagogic allstars Spencer Clarke (Skaters), Lieven Martens (Dolphins Into The Future), Eva Van Duren (Orphan Fairytale) and James Ferraro (CEO Airhead Entertainment) on the ever-compelling OESB imprint. Monopoly Child Star Searchers is usually the reserve of Spencer Clarke but he’s opened his nest to a few buddies on this one, weaving their like-minded liminal talents into his tropical trance sequences over four extended tracks dedicated to his parrot, Belafonte. If that all sounds a bit kinky, that’s because it is. The foursome get involved in long and steamy passages of heavily repetitive rhythms and drowsily fluctuating drones, all filled with the sort of mood setting ambiance and fragrant tonality that any parrot would be helpless to resist, and most likely be very flattered with such a display of affection and desire. Birds with exotic beaks are our favourite kind and if you liked Dolphins Into The Future’s polynesian daydream ‘Ke Ala Ke Kua’ or Spencer Clarke and Ferraro’s feathery kNew-Age moments, this album is totally mind-melting. Essential wares.



VARIOUS / PLANET MU
Bangs & Works Vol.1 (A Chicago Footwork Compilation)
DUBSTEP / GRIME / FUNKY
Planet Mu
CD // £10.99

One look at the tracklisting for ‘Bangs & Works’ vol.1 is enough to give even the passing Footwork fan a touch of the jukin’ jitters. Planet Mu’s most comprehensive and substantial overview of Southside Chicago’s younger brother to booty, aka Juke or Footwork, collates a good proportion of those deadly cuts you could only previously hear on youtube or if you were lucky enough, a p*ssy 128k mp3. Of course the quality of either format was never a hindrance to our enjoyment, but now properly pressed on CD and wax it all sounds heavy as hell (even if we do crave a bit of youtube compression every now and again). After LPs from Nate and Roc, this comp looks further out of the ring to producers like DJ Elmoe and the blissful, time expanding suspension of scene classic ‘Whea Yo Ghost At, Whea Yo Dead Man’, onto hugely sought after diamonds like RP Boo’s spine-tingling dread sci-fi killer ‘Eraser’ or DJ Yung Tellem’s horrifically effective ‘Freddy vs Jason’. We could rant about this set allllll day, but if you’ve acquired a taste for this sh*t it’s probably already topping your xmas list. If you haven’t, we couldn’t recommend a better place to start. ESSENTIAL.



SUN CIRCLE
Tapes
DARK AMBIENT / DRONE / METAL
AUTUMN
2CD // £16.99

‘Tapes’ is a double disc collection of odds-and-ends pulled from Greg Davies and Zack Wallace’s sprawling catalogue of out-of-press cassette-only releases, and instantly drags us into a hallowed place of peace and calm. It might not initially seem that way with blasts of distorted modular synthesizer ping-ponging from ear to ear, but give it a few moments to sink in and you’ll be drifting through outer space in no time at all. These pieces are all about the tiny changes, and as each piece ebbs and flows through the usual twenty-or-so minute duration it’s important to listen very carefully, probably on headphones. The small shifts eventually give way to larger ones, and a simple pulsing rhythm can, before you know it, be dissolved in a cloud of bowed strings and echoing voices. It’s only on repeat listens that I can even discernibly identify most of the instruments, what was once a voice now sounds strangely synthetic, and the most obvious of synthesized tones slowly reveals more organic sources. ‘Tapes’ is an album which revels in slowness, in restraint and in patience – I think we could all use a bit more of those things in our lives. Don’t bother buying your agitated loved ones ‘The Little Book Of Calm’ this Christmas, buy ‘Tapes’ instead – you won’t regret it.



XELA
The Sublime
DARK AMBIENT / DRONE / METAL
DIGITALIS
Cassette // £6.99

‘The Sublime’ completes Xela’s current release cycle for Digitalis that started with ‘The Illuminated’ in 2008, and bowed at ‘The Divine’ in late 2009. Each edition is released in a run of 200 copies, accompanied some months later by a vinyl pressing on Dekorder, as with this concluding station. From the epithet “Inherited and misplaced by J. Twells Esq. 2009/10” to biblical quotes and a medieval map of the middle east on the sleeve, Twells provides clear context for consumption, but even without it, this is an astonishing set of music with a marked maturation from previous episodes. And we definitely wouldn’t call this New Age, either. There’s something far more ancient and arcane at play in these recordings, drawing on reference points from horror soundtracks and ritualistic drone techniques to darker themes from Christian dogma and mythology. He’s genuinely just given our day a darkly skewed slant with these potent vibes and although it might be a while before we’re ready for it again, you’re unlikely to forget this one in a hurry. Very highly recommended.



GEOFF MULLEN
A Dust Futures
DARK AMBIENT / DRONE / METAL
DIGITALIS
Cassette // £6.99

Capping a vintage year for Mr Mullen after his ‘Bongo Closet’ LP for Type everyone round these parts, Digitalis present the mystic space music jumble of ‘A Dust Futures’. Using his favoured Yamaha CS-50 and creating a delirious friction from assortments of tape loops, Mullen makes strange and wonderful arrangements full of sparse, cold space and spiralling plumes of abstract melody which just happens to sound ever so similar to the breakdown from Carl Craig’s ‘The Climax’ on the B-side (no shit!). This is the sorta stuff we can zone out to all day and comes with the warmest recommendations for fans of OPN, Arp, Dylan Ettinger, or Stellar Om Source.



VARIOUS / HONEST JON’S RECORDS
Bellyachers, Listen: Songs From East Africa, 1938-46
WORLD
Honest Jon’s Records
2LP // £13.99

The first half of two captivating collections from Honest Jon’s, including seventeen vintage songs from East Africa (Kenya and Uganda) recorded between 1938-46. Taking full advantage of unprecedented access to EMI’s treasured archives in Hayes, Middlesex, HJ’s drew from more than 400 sides in the HMV MA series: 10″ 78rpm ‘Native Records’, a set of recordings made in Africa, pressed in the UK and sent back to Africa, aimed at native Africans rather than the white colonialists or increasing Indian communities, all with the intention of raising record and gramophone sales. The tracks can be broadly split into three substyles, minstrelsy, percussion-based ensembles and taarab. Ssekiomou’s striking opener ‘Wireless’ exemplifies the time and sound of these recordings, relating a minstrel’s tale of the arrival of wireless radio to Kampala, central Uganda, and the flurry of excitement is clearly manifesting in the deliciously cacophonous, urgent Ndingidi – a small stringed instrument played here with a rapidly bowed rhythmic ostinato. As expected, the attention to detail and double gatefold presentation is second to none, and the mind boggles at the amount of work gone into translating and compiling the extensive sleevenotes and accompanying track-by-track pull out. All music lovingly restored at Abbey Road. Highly recommended!



VARIOUS / HONEST JON’S RECORDS
Something Is Wrong: Songs From East Africa, 1952-7
WORLD
Honest Jon’s Records
2LP // £13.99

The second half of two captivating collections from Honest Jon’s, including eighteen vintage songs from East Africa (Kenya and Uganda) recorded between 1952-7. Taking full advantage of unprecedented access to EMI’s treasured archives in Hayes, Middlesex, HJ’s drew from more than 400 sides in the HMV MA series: 10″ 78rpm ‘Native Records’, a set of recordings made in Africa, pressed in the UK and sent back to Africa, aimed at native Africans rather than the white colonialists or increasing Indian communities, all with the intention of raising record and gramophone sales. The tracks can be broadly split into three substyles, minstrelsy, percussion-based ensembles and taarab, with the former making up the bulk of this compilation. This is likely due to the nature of the minstrel, who served a purpose beyond mere entertainment, sharing news and views in their songs, usually accompanied with a simple, stringed backing, commonly a bridge-less lyre played like a banjo. Taarab was more popular with Swahili-speaking communities and those familiar with imported Indian and Arab Egyptian records, mostly defined by lilting melodies played on Oud, violins or Indian Harmonium with Arab-styled poetry. Influenced by an influx of Congolese musicians, the percussion-based ensembles account for a small but exhilarating section of the comp, including a spectacular big band Kenyan Calypso. As expected, the attention to detail and double gatefold presentation is second to none, and the mind boggles at the amount of work gone into translating and compiling the extensive sleevenotes and accompanying track-by-track pull out. All music lovingly restored at Abbey Road. Highly recommended!



VARIOUS / SOUNDWAY
The Sound Of Siam: Leftfield Luk Thung, Jazz And Molam From Thailand 1964 – 1975
WORLD
Soundway Records Ltd
CD // £11.99

‘The Sound of Siam’ is Soundway’s first foray into the cracked world of Asian music and thankfully manages to achieve the same head-expanding quality the label has become synonymous with. Tripping beween jazz, funk, easy listening, lounge and who knows what else, this nineteen track compilation is a daring, haphazard look into Thailand’s rarely heard underground music scene. The skeleton of traditional Thai music is there somewhere, but these tracks are notable for taking sizeable Western influences and bending them to suit their needs. Therefore when they play jazz (as heard on Chaweewan Dumnern’s ‘Lam Toey Chaweewan’) it only barely sounds like any jazz you could think to mention, sucking in influences from countless other Americanized genres. The finest moment comes in the shape of Ream Daranoi’s heartbreaking ‘Fai Yen’, which seems to echo 50s and 60s television themes in the accompanying music, while the unforgettable shrill vocals sound absolutely alien and totally beguiling. Recommending a compilation like this is incredibly easy – just take a listen and allow yourself to explore musical topographies you haven’t encountered before. We guarantee you won’t have heard a collection quite like it. Highly Recommended.

Singles of the Week



GATEKEEPER
Giza
SYNTHWAVE / ELECTRO
MEROK
12″ // £6.49

Chicago’s Gatekeeper follow last year’s debut with a brilliant, and far more substantial, EP for Merok (home to releases from Kingdom, Salem, Teengirl Fantasy). If you’ve not checked their first 12″ or awesome Fact mix, you really should sort it out. ‘Giza’ expands their style over six tracks, blending traces of Italo, Industrial EBM, and early Chicago house with VHS sci-fi soundtrack signatures and arcade game music. They’ve got a close contemporary ally for this sound in HIT’s White Car and to a certain extent Skam’s VHS Head, but Gatekeeper’s tracks have an innate cinematic narrative that’s quite hard to ignore and more like a cybercylic hallucination of the music they adore, than a rehash or cut-up. From the arcade biker themes of ‘Chains’, to the menacing Hellraiser vibes of ‘Storm Column’ , the leather-bound thrust of ‘Giza’ and the digital hallucinations of ‘Mirage’ this is a feast for any industrial dancefloor aesthetes. Highly recommended!



ILLUM SPHERE
The Plan Is Dead
BEATS / DOWNTEMPO / BOOGIE
FAT CITY
12″ // £6.99

Gleaming freshness from Illum Sphere, capping a fine year of releases and remixes on Martyn’s 3024 label and inclusion at the Red Bull Academy. ‘The Plan Is Dead’ continues a clear narrative arc of releases for Fat City, which started with ‘The Incoming EP’ and now pauses at these diverse five tracks of futurist Hip Hop. Opening with the Bossa Nova-infused breeziness of ‘One For Dimlite’, there’s an upswing of ecstatic synthline-driven head-nodders in ‘Diablo Day Out’ and ‘Supercharged’, both winking to the proggy styles of Hud Mo and Rustie but conducted with a certain sense of Manc-learned melancholy. Flip it to find one of the best tracks in his catalogue, bar none, on ‘An Old Escape (Kill Them Kill)’, a dread dance wrecker built from tipping tabla drums and spine-tingling surge of darkside synthline energy. Put this in your rave and smoke it! ‘Aftermath’ closes this affair, going heads down with bittersweet synth tones indebted to classic BoC records. Serious.



DOWNLINERS SEKT
We Make Hits, Not The Public
DUBSTEP / GRIME / FUNKY
DISBOOT
12″ // £6.99

Downliners Sekt dropped one of the most enigmatic and obtuse avant-dance records of this year with ‘Hello Lonely, Hold The Nation’. It’s taken them till the other end of the year to come out with this, ‘We Make Hits, Not The Public’ an assertive and pigeonhole-eluding four-track 12″. We now know that they’re based in Barcelona, but that makes no difference to their sound whose complex and contrary arrangements create a context all of their own. ‘From Under Spinning Lights’ sets out with restrained, airy halfstep/hiphop before billowing into Mount Kimbie-on-crack constructions with a well-heavy comedown, while ‘Incerta Gloria’ is much more jagged and rock-based, dynamically at least, with a surging loud/quiet aesthetic and boldly unique rhythm programming. The tumultuous, pitching, private rhythms of ‘White Dawn’ remind strongly of their awesome previous 12″, again with the camouflaged vocal samples, before ‘Selfish G’ picks apart some cybernetic R&B joint and rearranges it on a 3D grid of collapsing rhythmic inversions. F*ck knows what this is, but it’s brilliant.



OUTER LIMITS RECORDINGS
Julie
SYNTHWAVE / ELECTRO
OLDE ENGLISH SPELLING BEE
7″ // £5.99

**Full colour artwork with lyrics for ‘Julie’ on the reverse!**Another mega-anthem for an alternate reality from Sam Meringue aka Outer Limits Recordings. The devotional drone-pop smasher ‘Julie’ features golden lines like “Juleeeee/ You Don’t Have To Kill To Be Happeeee” and “Juleeeee/Smell The Fear Upon Me When You’re Scareeee” set to the most fugged-up swarms of tape noise and epically muffled drums with sticky synth secretions spurted all over the top. ‘Plastik Child’ comes from the same zone of brilliance as Autre Ne Veut, only amplified to the power of Nena and therefore disgustingly addictive. Highly recommended if you got the Greatest Hits 7″ or have been copping the output of James Ferraro, Games, or any of Meringue’s myriad other projects. F**king A, yeah?



JAY WEED
Prism
DUBSTEP / GRIME / FUNKY
502 Recordings
12″ // £6.99

Lyon’s Jay Weed has got big boots to fill, dropping the 2nd release on Onemans 502 label after Fis-T’s ‘Night Hunter’, but thankfully he’s got big toes. ‘Prism’ has been doing the rounds on Oneman’s Rinse show for the last few months, sounding like some blunted reduction of Kingdom’s beefed-up Funky style, but for us the big one here is ‘The Naos’, recently included on Mosca’s Fact mix and sounding like a DVA beat on some pedigree Moroccan squidge. Sorta. Peep the samples and you’ll know what we mean! With a 12″ forthcoming for Sinden’s Grizzly enclosure and plays from Douster and Mosca, it’s safe to say you’ll be hearing more from Jay Weed in 2011. TIP!

This week’s releases in full!
sorted by genre | See all
BEATS / DOWNTEMPO / BOOGIE
See all
ILLUM SPHERE
The Plan Is Dead
FAT CITY
12″ // £6.99

Gleaming freshness from Illum Sphere, capping a fine year of releases and remixes on Martyn’s 3024 label and inclusion at the Red Bull Academy. ‘The Plan Is Dead’ continues a clear narrative arc of releases for Fat City, which started with ‘The Incoming EP’ and now pauses at these diverse five tracks of futurist Hip Hop. Opening with the Bossa Nova-infused breeziness of ‘One For Dimlite’, there’s an upswing of…
DARK AMBIENT / DRONE / METAL
See all
TWELLS AND CHRISTENSEN
Coasts
DIGITALIS
LP // £9.99

**Vinyl-only release, initial copies come on strictly limited red vinyl* Some two years in the making and evidently so, ‘Coasts’ is the compelling collaboration between John Twells (Xela) and Matt Christensen (Zelienople) for Digitalis Industries. The two like-minded souls have been recording their sessions in various forms for years, but the substantial nature of ‘Coasts’ meant it just had to be released into the wider world. These two tracks were…
SUN CIRCLE
Tapes
AUTUMN
2CD // £16.99

‘Tapes’ is a double disc collection of odds-and-ends pulled from Greg Davies and Zack Wallace’s sprawling catalogue of out-of-press cassette-only releases, and instantly drags us into a hallowed place of peace and calm. It might not initially seem that way with blasts of distorted modular synthesizer ping-ponging from ear to ear, but give it a few moments to sink in and you’ll be drifting through outer space in no time…
XELA
The Sublime
DIGITALIS
Cassette // £6.99

‘The Sublime’ completes Xela’s current release cycle for Digitalis that started with ‘The Illuminated’ in 2008, and bowed at ‘The Divine’ in late 2009. Each edition is released in a run of 200 copies, accompanied some months later by a vinyl pressing on Dekorder, as with this concluding station. From the epithet “Inherited and misplaced by J. Twells Esq. 2009/10” to biblical quotes and a medieval map of the middle…
GEOFF MULLEN
A Dust Futures
DIGITALIS
Cassette // £6.99

Capping a vintage year for Mr Mullen after his ‘Bongo Closet’ LP for Type everyone round these parts, Digitalis present the mystic space music jumble of ‘A Dust Futures’. Using his favoured Yamaha CS-50 and creating a delirious friction from assortments of tape loops, Mullen makes strange and wonderful arrangements full of sparse, cold space and spiralling plumes of abstract melody which just happens to sound ever so similar to…
QUIET EVENINGS
Easy Listening Circles
DIGITALIS
Cassette // £6.99

Quiet Evening are Grant and Rachel Evans, co-curators of the prolific cassette, VHS and CDr label, Hooker Vision. Acknowledging their influence upon his own work, Digitalis Recordings head Brad Rose closes the labels year with one of their finest releases to date ‘Easy Listening Circles’. In the foggy density of their sound it’s difficult to discern what’s what, as saturated synths blur into a wash of layered tonal colours, but…
STEARICA & ACID MOTHERS TEMPLE & THE MELTING PARAISO UFO
Stearica Invade Acid Mothers Temple
Homeopathic
LP // £10.99

At this point in their long and busy career, it’s hard to say anything absolutely new about Japanese prog-psych travellers Acid Mothers Temple. They have been there, and chances are they did that while they were there. You sort of know what to expect – unless, of course, you chance upon one of their collaborations, and this one especially adds something very different to their oevre. A collaboration with Italian…
STEARICA & ACID MOTHERS TEMPLE & THE MELTING PARAISO UFO
Stearica Invade Acid Mothers Temple
Homeopathic
CD // £10.99

At this point in their long and busy career, it’s hard to say anything absolutely new about Japanese prog-psych travellers Acid Mothers Temple. They have been there, and chances are they did that while they were there. You sort of know what to expect – unless, of course, you chance upon one of their collaborations, and this one especially adds something very different to their oevre. A collaboration with Italian…
HELM
To An End
ALTER
LP // £11.99

Captivating debut solo LP of drone and sound poetry from Birds Of Delay’s Luke Younger aka Helm. ‘To An End’ is also the first release by brilliant new label Alter (which you should be keeping a very close ear on) who’ve just unleashed new material from Design A wave and Hieroglyphic Being – go check! Split into two long-playing sections, Luke’s compositions are lava-slow and haunting sonic tapestries arranged from…
DISCO / EDITS / FUNK
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THE BRIEF ENCOUNTER
The Brief Encounter
Jazzman
CD // £12.99

Another top class soul reissue from Jazzman, offering the notoriously expensive ‘Special Release’ album by The Brief Encounter. Original copies are practically impossible to find, hence the common asking price of over $2000 for collectors. It was recorded in Muscle Shoals, Alabama by a small-time group of musicians from rural North Carolina in 1977, and is rightly considered a masterpiece of its time, showcasing funky rare grooves, beautiful ballads and…
THE BRIEF ENCOUNTER
The Brief Encounter
Jazzman
LP // £18.99

Another top class soul reissue from Jazzman, offering the notoriously expensive ‘Special Release’ album by The Brief Encounter. Original copies are practically impossible to find, hence the common asking price of over $2000 for collectors. It was recorded in Muscle Shoals, Alabama by a small-time group of musicians from rural North Carolina in 1977, and is rightly considered a masterpiece of its time, showcasing funky rare grooves, beautiful ballads and…
MIGHTY MOUSE
Song With No Word
History Records
CD // £9.99

London’s Nu-Disco heroes Mighty Mouse have been leading the capital on a merry jig for the last couple of years with well received compilations, DJ mixes and remixes/edits for everyone from Bent to Aeroplane. Before they drop a debut album proper, they’ve squeezed off this concept suite ‘Song With No Word’, ten untitled tracks ranging from the creamiest Eurodisco-fromage to symphonic, cinematic grooves and salacious boogie. Fans of Prins Thomas,…
VARIOUS / PERMANENT VACATION
Right To Play
PERMANENT VACATION
CD // £11.99

Smart mix CD from Permanent Vacation, opening with the Nouvelle Vague mix of Antena’s ‘Frantz’, we’re immersed in a lush selction of sunny Balearic disco and house from Brennan Green’s remix of 40 Thieves’ ‘Don’t Turn It Off’ to the Mock & Toof remix of Lauer’s ‘Delta’, Lullabies In The Dark’s ‘Iridium’, the Manuel Tur remix of Azari & III’s ‘Reckless (With Your Love)’, Bostro Pesopeo’s ‘Basic’ and the Invisible…
DOCUMENTARY
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VARIOUS / BFI
Design For Today: Central Office of Information Collection Vol. 2
BFI
2 X DVD // £16.99

Established in 1946, the Central Office of Information (COI) was a successor to the wartime Ministry of Information and was responsible for producing thousands of films which celebrated Britain, its people and their achievements. This second volume in the COI Collection surveys the subjects of architecture, design and fashion. Highlights include: Designing Women (1948), Joyce Grenfell takes us through the dos and donts of home furnishing; Brief City (1952), modernist…
VARIOUS / BFI
Police and Thieves: Central Office of Information Collection Vol. 1
BFI
2 X DVD // £16.99

The Central Office of Information (COI) was established in April 1946 and has produced thousands of films that reflected the culture and concerns of the nation. Volume 1 of the COI collection tackles crime, juvenile delinquency, policing and the justice system. A variety of styles and genres – story documentary, drama, public information shorts – are employed to deliver crime prevention messages and bolster recruitment in this area. The wonderful…
VARIOUS / BFI
The Joy Of Sex Education
BFI
2 X DVD // £16.99

From the earliest-known example , ‘Whatsoever a Man Soweth’ (1917) to the comical, but ultimately serious, ”Ave You Got a Male Assistant Please Miss?’ (1973), this unique anthology of 16 key titles takes in almost 60 years of the British sex education film. Take a journey through the euphemisms, metaphors, and diagrams of yore to discover the controversial attitude-changing works of the early 1970s. All matters, unmentionable or otherwise, are…
VARIOUS / BFI
They Stand Ready: Central Office of Information Collection Vol. 3
BFI
2 X DVD // £16.99

The third volume in the COI Collection, They Stand Ready, looks at Britain’s armed forces. To help paint a positive picture of life in the Services the COI produced morale-boosting documentaries, propaganda items and numerous recruitment films, which placed emphasis on escaping the humdrum of daily life. Join the Services, we are told, and a world of opportunity awaits you. Highlights include: Victory Parade (1946), in which troops from all…
VARIOUS / BFI
Land Of Promise: The British Documentary Movement 1930-1950
BFI
DELUXE 4 X DVD BOX // £25.99

“Featuring 40 films over four DVDs, this extensive collection is a major retrospective of the British documentary film movement during its period of greatest influence. These films – many of which are made available here for the first time since their original release – capture the spirit and strength, concerns and resolve of Britain and its people before, during and after the Second World War. These diverse and compelling films…
DUBSTEP / GRIME / FUNKY
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VARIOUS / PLANET MU
Bangs & Works Vol.1 (A Chicago Footwork Compilation)
Planet Mu
CD // £10.99

One look at the tracklisting for ‘Bangs & Works’ vol.1 is enough to give even the passing Footwork fan a touch of the jukin’ jitters. Planet Mu’s most comprehensive and substantial overview of Southside Chicago’s younger brother to booty, aka Juke or Footwork, collates a good proportion of those deadly cuts you could only previously hear on youtube or if you were lucky enough, a p*ssy 128k mp3. Of course…
DOWNLINERS SEKT
We Make Hits, Not The Public
DISBOOT
12″ // £6.99

Downliners Sekt dropped one of the most enigmatic and obtuse avant-dance records of this year with ‘Hello Lonely, Hold The Nation’. It’s taken them till the other end of the year to come out with this, ‘We Make Hits, Not The Public’ an assertive and pigeonhole-eluding four-track 12″. We now know that they’re based in Barcelona, but that makes no difference to their sound whose complex and contrary arrangements create…
JAY WEED
Prism
502 Recordings
12″ // £6.99

Lyon’s Jay Weed has got big boots to fill, dropping the 2nd release on Onemans 502 label after Fis-T’s ‘Night Hunter’, but thankfully he’s got big toes. ‘Prism’ has been doing the rounds on Oneman’s Rinse show for the last few months, sounding like some blunted reduction of Kingdom’s beefed-up Funky style, but for us the big one here is ‘The Naos’, recently included on Mosca’s Fact mix and sounding…
TERROR DANJAH
Air Bubble Remixes (Starkey / Royal T Mixes)
BUTTERZ
12″ // £5.49

**Clear Vinyl** Starkey, Swindle and Royal-T on the remix session for Terror Danjah, pressed on clear vinyl for the fiends! Dominating the A-side, Starkey spaces out the original with his unique brand of louche robotic funk, while the the flipside goes in more of a Breaks-driven direction with Swindle’s balance of darkside rave and chunky rollers beats, and Royal-T’s cartoonish, ‘Ardcore-spiked version.
BAD AUTOPSY
Bad Autopsy EP
Ramp Recordings
12″ // £6.99

Debut solo release business from Bad Autopsy, adding his quirky-but-rugged Funky style to Ramp. The keen-eared among you may have copped his swish R&B refit on the Ca$h Antic$ 2 12″ last week, but don’t worry if you didn’t, because these tracks are better. ‘Rot Pot’ starts up with double vision-inducing, dissonant synth riffs and crisply clipped Funky drums, while ‘Gin Mixer’ locks hard into a bristling R&B/Funky fusion with…
HISSY FIT
Berry (Submerse Mix)
SWING AND SKIP
12″ // £5.99

Supremely crisp and precise garage futurism from Hissy Fit, reinforced with a killer Submerse remix! The beautifully restrained minimalism of ‘Berry’ is key to its elegant yet robust propulsion, giving nuff space for clinically swinging drums to ricochet and bubble around a sparse lead line and fragrantly melodic dabs of vocal. On the flip Submerse rearranges the elements with a more dynamically structure, sweeping from tranced-out beginnings to lush breakdown…
D.O.K.
Chemical Planet
BUTTERZ
12″ // £4.99

Trailing his ‘anthemic ‘Golden Axe’ EP, D.O.K drops a pair of weigthy halfstep funk joints. The fruity purple vibes of ‘Chemical Planet’ goes in with super slick riffage on the A-side, but we shoudl realy divert you attention to the flip, a killer number called ‘Keep On Making Grime’ with a nasty line in flared basslines and dextrous halfstep chops like his regular spar, Terror Danjah. Check this one!
SILKIE
City Limits Vol. 1.4
DEEP MEDI MUSIK
12″ // £6.49

Dubbed-out gangsta-boogie badness from original ‘step auteur, Silkie. The latest in his City Limits series presents ‘Slo Jam’ on the A-side, keeping it cold skanking and swagger for the first half before cracking the facade and warming into a lushed-out swinger from the second drop. ‘Wonder’ is the techier but merrier mover on the flip, rubbing heavyweight halfstep patterns into a bustling double-timed flex with hot keys and blaring, rare-groovy…
HEADHUNTER
Lost Prophet / Chasing Dragons
IDLE HANDS
12″ // £5.99

Fresh outta Bristol’s Rooted Records hub, Headhunter lays down the latest Idle Hands 12″. He appears to be on a Soca-Funky/Dubstep mission with both tracks. This works out best on the smartly poised ‘Lost Prophet’, syncing galloping drums with lung-collapsing subs before a majestic techno synthline comes in to remind us who we’re listening to. On the flip ‘Chasing Dragons’ goes harder with a bulked-up drum palette compatible with more…
TERROR DANJAH
Minimal Dub (Undeniable EP 2)
Hyperdub
12″ // £5.49

2nd EP of four, presenting Terror Danjah’s ‘Undeniable’ album on vinyl. This one is loaded up with the augmented electro-house proulsion of ‘Minimal Dub’, the MC-heavy version of ‘Pro Plus’ now known as ‘This Year’ feat. DOK, Mz Bratt and Griminal, and a moment for the ladies on ‘I’m Feelin U’. That lead cut is obviously the pick of a serious bunch, working lethal half-timed fills and the duttiest elastic…
SCUBA / SYNKRO / SYSTEM
Mosaic Vol. 1: Sampler 1
Exit Records
12″ // £6.99

Heralding Exit’s first label compilation ‘Mosaic’, Scuba, Synkro and System appear on a tidy sampler 12″. The forthcoming 4LP and 2CD comp will include tracks from Skream, Commix, Instra:mental, Indigo and many more, but for now Scuba gives a clear taste of what to expect with the emotive downbeat roll of ‘In_2_’ and its signature vocal motif intoning “In to the future”. Stepping up a gear, Synkro goes all Eastern-mystical…
T.WILLIAMS
People’s Choice
PTN
10″ // £6.99

Cheeky Funky bleeper from Deep Teknologi’s T. Williams, apparently constructed on-the-fly during a Ustream session with live feedback from viewers. The lead cut is one of T. Williams’ more melodic joints brimming with bouncy Electro synthline energy and rolling on well tucked Funky rhythms. Skip on to the F Dat remix if you’re after something a little ruffer, with rattling Soca-Funky drums and batty quaking subs to get your flex…
VARIOUS / TECTONIC
Scientist Launches Dubstep Into Outer Space!
TECTONIC
2CD // £10.99

Tectonic’s most ambitious project comes to fruition; a double disc set of twelve exclusive and unreleased dubstep originals from the likes of Kode 9, Shackleton, Loefah, Mala, and King Midas Sound, plus a disc of mighty remixes from the legendary Scientist. The project is practically unprecedented in its scope, over 12 months in the making, meeting roots and future in visionary style. The previously unreleased and exclusive tracks are very…
VARIOUS / RINGO RECORDS
Swarf Pot: Transition Dubstep
Ringo Records
2CD // £10.99

Killer 2CD compilation of previously vinyl-only dubstep heavyweights and future exclusives from Benga, Coki, LD, Distance, Cluekid, Skream, Mala, and Silkie (plus a sneaky track from Loefah). From their base in South London’s Transition studios – THE go-to mastering and cutting house for dubstep – Ringo Records have been at the epicentre of the scene’s seismic movements since 2006, releasing only the choicest cuts from the most pivotal players. Disc…
DIGITAL MYSTIKZ
Urban Ethics
DMZ
3LP // £18.99

Coki’s loooong-awaited counterweight to Mala’s astral ‘Return II Space’ LP finally lands on super heavy 3LP gatefold vinyl!!! As the other half of Digital Mystikz, Coki can rightly claim status as one of the most influential figures in modern UK dance music, providing the necessary gutterisms to balance Mala’s meditative, rooted ethos. It’s probably fair to say that Coki’s tracks have yielded a great influence on the dubstep scene with…
BRETON
Counter Balance EP
Hemlock Recordings
12″ // £6.49

Hemlock have a habit of thrusting highly impressive new artists upon the world – think James Blake, Untold, or Fantastic Mr Fox. London’s Breton are the latest in line, emerging fully formed with a sound that’s equal parts post-dubstep, rakish indie bloke vocals and Big Dada-style leftfield HipHop. Their five track ‘Counter Balance EP’ has already won favour with er, Coldplay’s Chris Martin, and is set to achieve much acclaim…
GEIOM
Resi Claart / Stel Dum
FRIJSFO BEATS
12″ // £4.99

Geiom steps into more IDM and minimal D&B-influenced terrain with a classy 12″ for Bristol’s Frijsfo crew. ‘Resi Clart’ sounds like classic Arovane updated with an awareness of recent DBridge moves and some sub-continental percussive influence. On the flip, ‘Stel Drum’ works out a trickier style of dubstep with nods to ASC’s rhythmic complexities.
LD
Ghost Story / Hard Skank
Sin City Recordings
12″ // £5.99

LD releases are few and far between and all the better for it. His third 12″ of 2010 drops on Hatcha and N-Type’s Sin City label, loaded with two heavily contrasting sides. ‘Ghost Story’ is uncharacteristically moody and dread infused, the kind of optimised halfstep banger you could imagine the label heads playing out. ‘Hard Skank’ is another case entirely, rompin’ into the kind of irresistably tuff swingers groove he’s…
MATTY G
Watching You / The Realness
Argon Records
12″ // £5.99

Matty G’s been on the low down this year, but evidently it was time well spent. The darkside-infused ‘Watching You’ works wraith-like mentasms and classic jungle breaks into a superbly moody and atmospheric half-stepper with his trademark layered 808 subs, contrasting acutely with ‘The Realness’ a mellow G-Funked roller with sparkling gangsta-boogie keys.
THE OTHERS & DISTINCTION
Disko / Under_Score
Ringo Records
12″ // £5.99

The Jason Transition and Chefal-curated Ringo Records maintain a near impeccable run with two of the best tracks The Others and Distinction have ever recorded. Together they gel like Cannon and Ball on ‘Disko’, a dirty swinging, hard-filtered, disco-sampling Dubstep killer with optimal production values, while ‘Under_Score’ features The Others at their very craftiest for an enigmatic, meditative and R&B-slinky winner. Hats off.
TRUTH
Stranger Than Fiction EP
Disfigured Dubz
2×12″ // £11.99

Filth-ridden dubstep four-tracker from Truth for Skream’s Disfigured Dubz imprint. Highlights have to be their version of the much-sampled ‘Love & Happiness’ refrain, here as ‘Stay’, or the raging ‘Bubba Ho Step’ and the orthodox rinse-out of ‘The Future’. One for the ravers.
VARIOUS / SUBWAY
Destination
SUBWAY
CD // £8.99

Subway represent for the Dutch dubstep factions with a smart label retrospective featuring the likes of TRG, Reso, Taz Buckfaster, Seven, DJ Madd, Matt-U, and Noah D among others. Now sixteen releases deep since 2007, they’ve got some heavy material to pick from, delivering 15 tracks in total. Highlights come from Akkachar & Taz Buckfaster on ‘187 On A Rock’, DJ Madd’s slinky garage bubbler ‘Bass Come Down’ and TRG…
ELECTRONIC
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JAMES FERRARO
Night Dolls With Hairspray
OLDE ENGLISH SPELLING BEE
LP // £13.99

**More untouchable smudged and trashed pop variants from James Ferraro – comes with with free download coupon redeemable from the label* Jim Ferraro has emerged from his dream dungeon (probably his mum’s basement) long enough to give Olde English Spelling Bee (officially the coolest label in the world right now according to Fact mag) a proper album of songs and that. ‘Night Dolls With Hairspray’ tacks the tackiest assortment of…
MARK FELL
UL8
Editions Mego
CD // £12.99

Mark Fell albums are like busses – you spend ages waiting for one, then two come at once. ‘UL8’ arrives just a couple of weeks after the fantastic ‘Multistability’ set for Raster Noton and, dare we say it, takes his sound even further into the outer reaches of glacial, rhythmic experimentation. With SND, Fell has tended to explore the hidden complexities of stripped rhythms, juxtaposing them with disorientating tones and…
MONOPOLY CHILD STAR SEARCHERS
Bamboo For Two
OLDE ENGLISH SPELLING BEE
LP // £13.99

**A Hypnagogic supergroup of sorts with a blast of hallucinatory and tropical rhythmic synth adventures – new on OESB! Comes with free download coupon redeemable from the label** Seductively heavy-lidded inter-species avian-eroticism from the hypnagogic allstars Spencer Clarke (Skaters), Lieven Martens (Dolphins Into The Future), Eva Van Duren (Orphan Fairytale) and James Ferraro (CEO Airhead Entertainment) on the ever-compelling OESB imprint. Monopoly Child Star Searchers is usually the reserve of…
DNTEL
After Parties (Part 1)
SUB POP
12″ // £5.99

**Includes a voucher for free MP3 download of the entire album – redeemable from the label** Jimmy Tamborello has been quiet of late, the last DNTEL album proper was back in 2007 and the last Postal Service album was earlier than that, so what’s he been up to since then? Well by the sounds of this EP, he’s been hard at work in the studio dialling back his sound to…
DNTEL
After Parties (Part 2)
SUB POP
12″ // £5.99

**Includes a voucher for free MP3 download of the entire album – redeemable from the label** The second of two new EP’s from Jimmy Tamborello’s Dntel, ‘After Parties II’ is possibly an even more horizontal take on his sound delivering subtle house experimentations and excursions into cavernous dub. Seriously, the EP might begin with the urgent beat-led bliss of ‘Flares’ but before long we’re treated to wobbling basslines and echoing…
VARIOUS / COIL
Coilectif: In Memory ov John Balance and Homage to Coil
ROTORELIEF
2LP // £29.99

Originally released on vinyl in 2006, this bumper collection of tracks was intended as a tribute to the much missed Jhonn Balance, and its re-release comes only days after the sad departure of Peter ‘Sleazy’ Christopherson. It is even more resonant then that this tribute should sing the praises of a crucial part of the architecture of British experimental music. Describing Coil as industrial would never quite provide the full…
VARIOUS / COIL
Coilectif: In Memory ov John Balance and Homage to Coil
ROTORELIEF
CD // £12.99

Originally released on vinyl in 2006, this bumper collection of tracks was intended as a tribute to the much missed Jhonn Balance, and its re-release comes only days after the sad departure of Peter ‘Sleazy’ Christopherson. It is even more resonant then that this tribute should sing the praises of a crucial part of the architecture of British experimental music. Describing Coil as industrial would never quite provide the full…
PACIFIC 231
Ethnicities
ROTORELIEF
CD // £12.99

Pacific 231 is the moniker of one Pierre Jolivet, an industrial music veteran who has collected a selection of early and more recent works on the bumper fifty-minute set ‘Ethnicities’. Beginning with haunted lo-fidelity drones reminiscent of David Lynch and Alan R. Splet’s milestone ‘Eraserhead’ soundtrack, the piece gradually succumbs to lulling percussive loops and discordant stabs, creating a smudged-out VHS-addled world James Ferraro would no-doubt be entranced by. Anyone…
LE SYNDICAT
Festin D’Acier
ROTORELIEF
LP // £19.99

**Limited, individually-numbered edition of 333 copies** Le Syndicat’s ‘Festin D’Acier’ is one of the more industrial numbers in Rotorelief’s diverse catalogue. The title, translating as ‘Steel Feast’ is inspired by the infamous tome of visionary William Burroughs ‘The Naked Lunch’, and documents chaos cruelty and destruction through ragged, blackened loops and breakbeats sounding a lot like Bomb20 or Dälek.
VARIOUS / ROBOT ELEPHANT
Isvolt
Robot Elephant
LP // £9.99

Reppin’ for a British take on the whole WitchHouse phenomenon, ‘Isvolt’ collects nine tracks from the a young new coven of †‡†, Fostercare, White Ring, Mater Suspiria Vision, Modern Witch and Party Trash. Distinguishing itself from the more R&B-infused sound of Tri Angle records, this comp stalks scorched ground between the EBM/Industrial Wave of //Tense//, Mater Suspiria Vision and White Ring’s Salem-aping dungeon crunk and the emaciated shoegaze-pop of Raw…
MARCUS SCHMICKLER
Palace Of Marvels (Queered Pitch)
Editions Mego
CD // £12.99

‘Palace of Marvels (Queered Pitch)’ follows 2007s ‘Altars of Science’ and continues veteran electronic experimenter Marcus Schmickler’s quest to explore the outer reaches of extreme computer music. Apparently based on the ideas of the 1960s discovery of Roger Shepard’s ‘Shepard Tone’ – the auditary illusion of a tone that continually rises or descends in pitch but ultimately never gets higher or lower – this is synthesizer music for the more…
MARCUS SCHMICKLER
Palace Of Marvels (Queered Pitch)
Editions Mego
2LP // £16.99

‘Palace of Marvels (Queered Pitch)’ follows 2007s ‘Altars of Science’ and continues veteran electronic experimenter Marcus Schmickler’s quest to explore the outer reaches of extreme computer music. Apparently based on the ideas of the 1960s discovery of Roger Shepard’s ‘Shepard Tone’ – the auditary illusion of a tone that continually rises or descends in pitch but ultimately never gets higher or lower – this is synthesizer music for the more…
FRENCHBLOKE & SON
Societe de Radiodiffusion de l’homme et du fils Francais – Bruit dans l’interet de Musique
Seed Records
USB Stick / Casette // £5.99

PHARMAKUSTIK
Neurochemie
ROTORELIEF
LP // £19.99

‘Neurochemie’ is one of the most intriguing albums we’ve found on France’s excellent Rotorelief label. It counts as part of ongoing research by Siegmar Fricke, a long-standing fixture of the European tape music scene who has collaborated with the likes of Maurizio Bianchi and Giancarlo Toniutti since 1985. His “audioclinical investigations” are characterized by shadowy techniques of “intermodulating, morphing particles and their mutual interaction in the stereophonic panorama”, manifesting themselves…
EXTREME / NOISE
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ZEITKRAZER / ALVIN LUCIER
Old School
ZEITKRATZER
CD // £13.99

Berlin based purveyers of musical oddness Zeitkrazer continue their ‘Old School’ releases with this tribute to big daddy of minimalism Alvin Lucier. As you might expect, the ensemble who took Lou Reed’s stunning ‘Metal Machine Music’ to brave new places yanks Lucier’s original pieces and brings them right into the new school. One of the most striking pieces is ‘Music for Piano with Magnetic Strings’, which takes sustained piano string…
VIVENZA
Realites Servomecaniques
ROTORELIEF
CD // £12.99

Continuing Rotorelief’s unearthing of long-forgotten industrial albums, ‘Realites Servomecaniques’ is a remastered edition of Jean-Marc Vivenza’s classic 1985 LP. Swathed in dirt and white noise the record is a collection of tape-mangled factory recordings and broken machinery bringing together the world of musique concrete and early 80s industrial. The machine-strength samples gradually form rhythmic loops and the pulsing, hissing steam sounds almost make drones to form something far more musical…
JAZZKAMMER
Timex
Rune Grammofon
CD // £8.99

Reissue of early Jazzkammer album ‘Timex’, Lasse Marhaug and John Hegre’s first collaborative effort for the esteemed Rune Grammofon imprint. With nearly 50 releases to their name since 2000, newcomers would be understandably wary of where to begin with their output, but this is quite a brilliant introduction. Refraining from the outright noise of some later works, ‘Timex’ is concerned with the sculpting of dry and dense digital sonics in…
FEATURE FILM
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LOTTE REINIGER
The Fairy Tale Films
BFI
2 X DVD // £16.99

Following the BFI’s highly successful DVD release of ‘The Adventures of Prince Achmed’ by the pioneer of silhouette animation, Lotte Reiniger, we now present a 2-disc DVD of her original and lively versions of fairy tales including Cinderella, Aladdin and his Magic Lamp, The Sleeping Beauty, Snow White and Rose Red, Puss in Boots, Jack and the Beanstalk, Thumbelina and Hansel and Gretel. With wonderful music and charming narrations, these…
FOLK / AMERICANA
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BREATHE OWL BREATHE
Magic Central
HOMETAPES
CD // £11.99

If you didn’t get the idea from Breathe Owl Breathe’s hipper-than-thou moniker, or the title of their album, ‘Magic Central’ is a decidedly twee listening experience. The Michigan three-piece can hardly be said to sell themselves anything less than honestly, and through twelve tracks their third full-length does plenty to place their music on just the right side of cute. Somewhere between Sufjan Stevens’ highly orchestrated indie symphonies and Belle…
BREATHE OWL BREATHE
Magic Central
HOMETAPES
LP // £14.49

If you didn’t get the idea from Breathe Owl Breathe’s hipper-than-thou moniker, or the title of their album, ‘Magic Central’ is a decidedly twee listening experience. The Michigan three-piece can hardly be said to sell themselves anything less than honestly, and through twelve tracks their third full-length does plenty to place their music on just the right side of cute. Somewhere between Sufjan Stevens’ highly orchestrated indie symphonies and Belle…
BONNIE ‘PRINCE’ BILLY / TREMBLING BELLS / MIKE HERON
New Year’s Eve’s The Loneliest Night Of The Year
Honest Jon’s Records
7″ // £5.49

Come New Year’s Eve we all decide we’re Scottish, don’t we? Auld Lang Syne, Robert Burns, Haggis – it all comes out when the bubbly’s flowing and Jools Holland is boogie-woogieing his way through some Hootenanny or other. It seems appropriate then that Glasgow folk-rockers Trembling Bells should find it in their souls to offer us an alternative anthem to that inevitable New-Year’s let-down. ‘New Year’s Eve The Loneliest Night…
AMIINA
Puzzle
Aminamusik
CD // £8.99

As most of you probably know, Icelandic orchestral poppers Amiina used to be part of Sigur Ros in another life and despite not having worked with the band for a few years now, the influence of the epic post-rockers is still often evident. That’s not to say that Amiina’s latest full-length ‘Puzzles’ sounds exactly like Sigur Ros, but there is a distinct similarity to their attempts at the cinematic, the…
BALMORHEA
Candor / Clamor
Western Vinyl
7″ // £7.49

**Premium, “plate-thick” 70g 7″ vinyl in a limited edition of only 500 copies** Further to their ‘Constellations’ album, Austin, Texas-based quintet Balmorhea give the contrasting sides of ‘Candor/Clamor’ for Western Vinyl. ‘Candor’ quietly makes its presence felt with gentle, polyrhythmic marimbas and haunting tones seeping up from the lower registers before lissom electric guitar and operatic vocals take centre stage, wowing all in earshot. ‘Clamor’ is bolder, an almost-ecstatic swirl…
KLIMA
Serenades & Serinettes
SECOND LANGUAGE
CD // £10.99

“Klima is the musical alias of Angèle David-Guillou, French-born, London-based singer-songwriter and gifted multi-instrumentalist. Klima’s eponymous debut appeared on the Peacefrog label in 2007 to ringing critical endorsement (“a debut all fans of Cocteau Twins, early Björk, Nina Persson or The Knife should buy, if they haven’t already”, opined The Times). In the interim, Angèle has been busy; when not touring the globe both as Klima and in tandem with…
SEAN SMITH
Christmas
TOMPKINS SQUARE
CD // £12.99

Is it too early to start thinking about Christmas music? Well, at the time of writing we hadn’t even made it as far as Hallowe’en, and yet the decorations are starting to go up in shop windows, so perhaps not. In any case, this album from solo guitarist Sean Smith is a dead cert to get you in the festive spirit. The album boasts a beautifully arranged set of traditional…
WILLIAM TYLER
Behold The Spirit
TOMPKINS SQUARE
CD // £12.99

William Tyler is a native of Nashville, Tennessee and a guitarist who has spent the last several years recording and touring with Silver Jews and Lambchop among others. In addition he has contributed to albums by artists as diverse as Charlie Louvin, Candi Staton, and Wooden Wand, as well as taking part in a large ensemble piece by composer Rhys Chatham. He also recently contributed a track to Tompkins Square’s…
HIP HOP
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DELS
Trumpalump
Big Dada
12″ // £4.99

Big Dada drop their second single from the hotly-tipped Dels, backed with mixes from Joe Goddard, Paper Tiger and Gwilym Gold’s. Again, the production is handled by Hot Chip’s Joe Goddard, lending ‘Trumpalump’ an (avant)Pop-sharpness that’s not usually accompanied by such compellingly unique lyrics. Goddard’s own remix takes the track on a moodier downbeat tangent while Paper Tiger gives a bubbly 8-bit dancehall version and Gwilym’s Gold takes his sweet…
HOME LISTENING / MODERN CLASSICAL / AMBIENT
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MACHINEFABRIEK / BAKKER/KLEEFSTRA/BAKKER / LIONDIALER
That It Stays Winter Forever
WHITE BOX
CD // £7.99

*300 copies only* Pressed up to accompany their recent Japanese tour, this three-way split CD from the excellent White Box imprint features new and exclusive material from label-head Danny Saul alongside Greg Haines under the Liondialer moniker, Machinefabriek and Bakker/Kleefstra/Bakker, each contributing a 20 minute piece. You do have to wonder when Machinefabriek will run out of steam and settle into the tried-and-tested one album a year routine, but his…
INDIE / ROCK / ALTERNATIVE
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ZACH HILL
Face Tat
SARGENT HOUSE
LP // £12.99

At this point Zach Hill is probably better known as a collaborator than as a solo artist. As ‘lead drummer’ with Hella, Marnie Stern and Wavves, among others, he has turned heads worldwide with his delirious drumming style which manages to come off like a funky love child of Lightning Bolt and John Stanier, or both at once. Either way his drumming often manages to outshine the performers he plays…
ZACH HILL
Face Tat
SARGENT HOUSE
CD // £10.99

At this point Zach Hill is probably better known as a collaborator than as a solo artist. As ‘lead drummer’ with Hella, Marnie Stern and Wavves, among others, he has turned heads worldwide with his delirious drumming style which manages to come off like a funky love child of Lightning Bolt and John Stanier, or both at once. Either way his drumming often manages to outshine the performers he plays…
VARIOUS / LION PRODUCTIONS
Groove Club Vol. 2: Cambodia Rock Spectacular!
Lion Productions
2LP // £17.99

Collecting 19 awesome pre-1975 Cambodian rock classics on gatefold double vinyl. In the years before Pol Pot’s notoriously hardline and anti-Western Khmer Rouge regime altered the history of Cambodia forever, there was a flourishing, anarchic and vital rock scene centred in the capital Phnom Penh. Sadly some of the artists featured, notably Sinn Sisamouth “the Emperor of Khmer Music” and Ros Sereysothea “The Golden Voice of the Royal Capital” couldn’t…
SOARS
Soars
La Societe Expeditionnaire
CD // £10.99

The basement pop sound that US bands have always been so good at has recently taken a turn for the mainstream. With chill-wave bands taking their place in the upper quarter of any ‘buzz’ list you’d care to stumble across, it’s hardly a surprise that a new one pops up seemingly every time you hit ‘refresh’ in firefox. Soars are one such band, and while they might be lumbered with…
SOARS
Soars
La Societe Expeditionnaire
LP // £12.99

The basement pop sound that US bands have always been so good at has recently taken a turn for the mainstream. With chill-wave bands taking their place in the upper quarter of any ‘buzz’ list you’d care to stumble across, it’s hardly a surprise that a new one pops up seemingly every time you hit ‘refresh’ in firefox. Soars are one such band, and while they might be lumbered with…
LABORATORY NOISE
When Sound Generates Light
RECURRING ACCIDENT
CD // £8.99

I’m sure when I was a wee lad shoegaze music was pretty much everything bad about the world. At least that’s what I was told by the knowledgeable indie press – music for girly men and pillow biters, wasn’t it? Well thank the lord times changed, because these days there’s no shortage of shimmery nu-gazers in the world, and they can now hold their heads up high rather than sidling…
BARDO POND
Bardo Pond
Fire Records
CD // £10.99

Philadelphia’s psychedelic rock troupe Bardo Pond have been around for twenty-odd years now, and despite having released more albums than most bands cough up in their entire lifetimes, they’re still at it. This latest self-titled missive for the esteemed Fire label is possibly the band’s most focused to date, melting their ethereal Sonic Youth-isms into the blazing embers of actual songs and cooling their explosive qualities, allowing the band to…
BARDO POND
Bardo Pond
Fire Records
LP // £12.99

Philadelphia’s psychedelic rock troupe Bardo Pond have been around for twenty-odd years now, and despite having released more albums than most bands cough up in their entire lifetimes, they’re still at it. This latest self-titled missive for the esteemed Fire label is possibly the band’s most focused to date, melting their ethereal Sonic Youth-isms into the blazing embers of actual songs and cooling their explosive qualities, allowing the band to…
BLANK DOGS
On Two Sides
Sacred Bones Records
CD // £10.99

Blank Dogs is a one-man enterprise that within the space of approximately one year has somehow managed to release a dozen or so releases, with two albums now available at your digital convenience. On Two Sides has previously done the rounds thanks to physical releases on Fuck It Tapes and Troubleman, suggesting this Brooklynite is hanging out in all the right crowds. As for the music itself, it’s all very…
GARY WAR
Horribles Parade
Sacred Bones Records
LP // £14.49

‘Horribles Parade’ is the second album from Gary War, following his ‘New Raytheonport’ solo debut for SHDWPLY. He’s previously played in Ariel Pink’s band alongside John Maus and also recorded a handful of other cassettes and CD’s for Captured Tracks and Knife Slits Water, but much of his best material is on Sacred Bones. Like an even more zonked-out and drugged-up Ariel Pink, Gary makes awesome pop tarts oozing with…
GARY WAR
Horribles Parade
Sacred Bones Records
CD // £10.99

‘Horribles Parade’ is the second album from Gary War, following his ‘New Raytheonport’ solo debut for SHDWPLY. He’s previously played in Ariel Pink’s band alongside John Maus and also recorded a handful of other cassettes and CD’s for Captured Tracks and Knife Slits Water, but much of his best material is on Sacred Bones. Like an even more zonked-out and drugged-up Ariel Pink, Gary makes awesome pop tarts oozing with…
SOFT CIRCLE
Shore Obsessed
Post Present Medium
CD // £8.99

Bird Show’s Ben Vida and former Black Dice and Lightening Bolt drummer Hisham Bharroocha reveal a tender dance-pop underbelly with their new Soft Circle album. It’s now four years since their debut album ‘Full Bloom’ and 12 months down the line from a brilliant split 12″ with High Places, in which time they’ve really honed their sound to a refreshed pop format, tempering Hisham’s notoriously feverish drumming to infectious dancefloor…
SOFT CIRCLE
Shore Obsessed
Post Present Medium
LP // £9.99

Bird Show’s Ben Vida and former Black Dice and Lightening Bolt drummer Hisham Bharroocha reveal a tender dance-pop underbelly with their new Soft Circle album. It’s now four years since their debut album ‘Full Bloom’ and 12 months down the line from a brilliant split 12″ with High Places, in which time they’ve really honed their sound to a refreshed pop format, tempering Hisham’s notoriously feverish drumming to infectious dancefloor…
THE BITTERS
Have A Nap Hotel EP
Sacred Bones Records
LP // £10.99

The Bitters are Aerin Fogel and F*cked Up’s Ben Cook, a Toronto-based duo trading in powerful post punk with a dark and heavy seam of ’50s rock ‘n roll inspirations. ‘Have A Nap Hotel’ comes in quick succession from their acclaimed debut LP for Mexican Summer and a very well received EP for Captured Tracks earlier in the year, presenting a brooding, fierce and scouring sound they’ve termed “Cave Pop”….
TREEFIGHT FOR SUNLIGHT
What Became Of You & I?
Bella Union
7″ // £4.99

Bella Union’s latest signings are a fresh-faced and charmingly melodic four-piece from Denmark, Treefight For Sunlight. Both of these tracks have been lifted from their debut album ‘A Collection Of Vibrations For Your Skull’. ‘What Became Of You And I’ radiates west coast 60s vibes with glorious vocal harmonies and California orange-sweet guitar hooks. ‘The Universe Is A Woman’ is more downbeat full still full of wide open skies reverb…
JAZZ / RELATED
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FLOATING POINTS ENSEMBLE
Post Suite / Almost In Profile
Ninja Tune
10″ // £5.49

Sam Shepherd’s Floating Points Ensemble make their highly anticipated recorded debut with two sumptuous tracks for Ninja Tune. Following his stream of hugely acclaimed releases on R2, Planet Mu, and Eglo (which he co-runs with Alex Nut), and now in command of twelve skilled players, Sam has evolved the Floating Points project to a full-blown group. The ensemble have already claimed the coveted ‘Best Maida Vale Session’ at Gilles Peterson’s…
JUNGLE / DRUM & BASS
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SKEPTICAL
Sphere / Dream Police
Ingredients Records
12″ // £5.99

Smart, dub-heavy rollers from Skeptical for the excellent Ingredients label. ‘Sphere’ is built lithe and moody with punchy, sparring percussion and a sumptuous subbass cushion surrounded by cloistered atmospherics, while ‘Dream Police’ is more rugged and menacing, strongly reminding us of that crafty dBridge/Skream/Instra:mental collab ‘Acacia Avenue’ on Autonomic. Includes a recipe for Skeptical’s eggs florentine with bacon. Big with Jubie, Doc Scott, Fierce, Genotype, and Break among others (the…
MINIMAL / DANCEFLOOR
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SIMIAN MOBILE DISCO / VARIOUS
Is Fixed
DEFEND MUSIC
CD // £11.99

For their first mix CD since ’08s Fabric mix, Simian Mobile Disco really indulge their most esoteric inclinations with brilliant results. Tilted on an astral trajectory, the sixteen-track, hour long session takes in the disparate space sounds of Delia Derbyshire, Carl Craig, Etienne Jaumet, Conrad Schnitzler, and Pantha Du Prince among others, all united by the heavy throb of an 808 drum palette to accompany their live mixing. Highlights have…
SOUNDTRACKS / LIBRARY / EARLY ELECTRONIC
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DAFT PUNK
Tron Legacy Soundtrack
Walt Disney Records
CD // £9.99

When Daft Punk were given the task of scoring the long-awated sequel to 1974’s Tron, Tron Legacy, the shockwave of nerd glee could be witnessed all across the internet. What would it sound like? How could there be a more appropriate band to conjure up Tron’s neon-lit visuals in sound? Then of course, rumours began to surface that the French duo were using an orchestra, and soundbytes emerged of the…
SYNTHWAVE / ELECTRO
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GATEKEEPER
Giza
MEROK
12″ // £6.49

Chicago’s Gatekeeper follow last year’s debut with a brilliant, and far more substantial, EP for Merok (home to releases from Kingdom, Salem, Teengirl Fantasy). If you’ve not checked their first 12″ or awesome Fact mix, you really should sort it out. ‘Giza’ expands their style over six tracks, blending traces of Italo, Industrial EBM, and early Chicago house with VHS sci-fi soundtrack signatures and arcade game music. They’ve got a…
OUTER LIMITS RECORDINGS
Julie
OLDE ENGLISH SPELLING BEE
7″ // £5.99

**Full colour artwork with lyrics for ‘Julie’ on the reverse!**Another mega-anthem for an alternate reality from Sam Meringue aka Outer Limits Recordings. The devotional drone-pop smasher ‘Julie’ features golden lines like “Juleeeee/ You Don’t Have To Kill To Be Happeeee” and “Juleeeee/Smell The Fear Upon Me When You’re Scareeee” set to the most fugged-up swarms of tape noise and epically muffled drums with sticky synth secretions spurted all over the…
DESIGN A WAVE
Live On Your Yard
ALTER
12″ // £9.99

Design A Wave is the recording handle of Tom Hirst (with some help from Melissa Osborne and Will Saunders) and ‘Live On Your Yard’ is his first vinyl release. He’s been releasing an assortment of dictaphone-recorded collages and warped synthwave inspired by the aesthetics of trashy old Troma movies and such (his name is borrowed from a gang in Surf Nazis Must Die) on CDr for over ten years, but…
CHROMATICS
Night Drive (Deluxe Edition)
ITALIANS DO IT BETTER
2LP // £10.99

**New deluxe edition of this classic album from Italians Do It Better – includes five previously unreleased tracks!!** IDIB present a well warranted, analogue remastered Deluxe Edition of Chromatics’ now-classic ’07 LP, ‘Night Drive’, now including five bonus tracks. The original tracks sound as poignantly cinematic as ever, their cover of Kate Bush’s ‘Running Up That Hill’ still striking a tender nerve. The new tracks neatly expand the soundtrack-y feel,…
CHROMATICS
Night Drive (Deluxe Edition)
ITALIANS DO IT BETTER
CD // £8.99

**New deluxe edition of this classic album from Italians Do It Better – includes five previously unreleased tracks!!** IDIB present a well warranted, analogue remastered Deluxe Edition of Chromatics’ now-classic ’07 LP, ‘Night Drive’, now including five bonus tracks. The original tracks sound as poignantly cinematic as ever, their cover of Kate Bush’s ‘Running Up That Hill’ still striking a tender nerve. The new tracks neatly expand the soundtrack-y feel,…
GOOSE
Synrise
K7
CD // £11.99

‘Synrise’ is the second album proper from Belgium’s Goose, who’ve previously released on Skint and whose music has previously been used on adverts for Coca-Cola and Heineken, donchaknow. There’s quite clearly some major pop factors at play with this album, from the sleeve art by Storm Thorgerson (responsible for THAT Pink Floyd sleeve) to the pitch-perfect electro-rock power-pop within, apparently inspired by Philip Glass, Vangelis, Tangerine Dream, Depeche Mode and…
GOOSE
Words Remixes EP
K7
12″ // £5.99

Boris Dlugosch, Joe&Will Ask?, and The Living Islands stir up a proper neo-disco remix session with material from Belgium’s award-winning, Coca-Cola-advert-soundtracking outfit, Goose. Boris Dlugosch is in peakin’ form on the A-side, churning out electrifying synthline excesses and Italo bassline arrogance, while Joe&Will Ask? give a hairdresser-friendly electro-house mix and The Living Islands run with slick, modern Italo vibes. Includes a download-code of a free high bit rate version of…
GOOSE
Synrise
K7
2LP // £18.99

*Now available on vinyl* ‘Synrise’ is the second album proper from Belgium’s Goose, who’ve previously released on Skint and whose music has previously been used on adverts for Coca-Cola and Heineken, donchaknow. There’s quite clearly some major pop factors at play with this album, from the sleeve art by Storm Thorgerson (responsible for THAT Pink Floyd sleeve) to the pitch-perfect electro-rock power-pop within, apparently inspired by Philip Glass, Vangelis, Tangerine…
TECHNO / HOUSE
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HIEROGLYPHIC BEING
A Romance of 2 Planets
ALTER
12″ // £9.99

Beautifully presented three-track 12″ from Jamal Moss in his enigmatic Hieroglyphic Being guise, presented in a run of 500 copies on London’s excellent Alter label – who’re responsible for that OPN/Tomuttontu split 7″ some months back. Jamal’s unique and impregnable style is in full flow on the 12-minute A-side ‘Sphere Of Madness’, divining wandering, astral synthlines and frothing machine rhythms, all equally informed by vintage Chi-House, Industrial and New Age…
MOODYMANN
Forevernevermore
Peacefrog
CD // £7.99

**Classic KDJ album reissued at a tidy price!** The third Moodyman album to grace the worlds ears, ‘Forevernevermore’ held some of the greatest productions Kenny ever laid down, tracks such as his take on Chic’s ‘Don’t you want my love’ is a classic deep groove, vocal snippets and a superb loop go together in a silky smooth way that only KDJ can pull off. Also on here (though its hard…
REDSHAPE
Future Shock EP
Delsin
12″ // £7.99

*Blue transparent marbled vinyl* Three eerily strange martian techno burners from Redshape on his fifth EP for Delsin. ‘Future Shock’ makes first contact, powered by undulating, ominous bass drones and lifted in an updraft of spiraling space-age synthlines. Test this in the club for momentous effect. ‘Kung Fu’ is equally astrally-inclined, layering slivers of freestyle jazz-spiritual flute and rich analogue bassline into a bumpy rider while ‘Manhattan’ jams on a…
NINA KRAVIZ
I’m Week
REKIDS
12″ // £5.49

Opulent late-night House music from Nina Kraviz, dropping two totally sublime cruisers for Rekids. Over the last 12 months or so she’s served a string of classically-informed and sought-after releases for the likes of Jus-Ed’s UQ fam – the brilliant ‘Voices’ project – and Efdemin’s bijou Naïf imprint. ‘I’m Week’ is simply one of her best, full of deep, crimson-hued atmospheres and he kind of thick square bassline we could…
DELTA FUNKTIONEN
Setup Two: Fusion
Ann Aimee
12″ // £7.99

Ahead of a forthcoming album for Meanwhile, Delta Funktionen adds another killer to his collection of Ann Aimee 12″s. The darkened spirit of Detroit/Benelux techno burns deep in this one, from colossal throbbers such as ‘Devolution’ and the tense, upbuilding ‘Eruption’ through the sleek mechanical pound of ‘Theatre’ and a moment of more melodic relief in the sci-fi pounder ‘Conflict Data’. Strong stuff for those that know.
THEO PARRISH
Traffic ft. IG Culture
Kindred Spirits
12″ // £7.99

Unusually hyperactive yet unmistakably jazzy production from The Parrish and IG Culture. ‘Traffic’ is so effective they’ve only pressed up one side, so you can use the other as a mirror or something. We find the pair in full-on dancefloor mode, shakkin’ out tumultuous percussion and deep, grimy, wandering basslines designed to slot in with some equally driving House or mad Afro-Latin cosmic breakbeat sh*t. Tracks like this don’t come…
VIDEO COMPILATION
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PHIL MULLOY
Extreme Animation
BFI
DVD // £16.99

The provocative work of multi-award-winning animator Phil Mulloy stands as a model of satiric grotesque unparalleled in British animation. The antidote to all that is kitsch and sentimental, these direct, witty and acerbic fables, drawn in brush and ink, perceptively comment on human nature and challenge contemporary values. Having worked as a writer and director until the late 1980s, his six-part series for Channel Four, Cowboys (1991), brought his work…
QUAY BROTHERS
Quay Brothers: The Short Films 1979-2003
BFI
2 X DVD // £20.99

Since the late 1970s, the identical twin Quay Brothers have made a unique contribution to animation in general, and the puppet film in particular. Filtering arcane visual, literary, musical, cinematic and philosophical influences through their own utterly distinctive sensibility, each quay film rivets the attention through hypnotic control of decor, music and movement, evoking half-remembered dreams and long-suppressed childhood memories, fascinating and deeply unsettling in turn. This two-disc set contains…
WORLD
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FOSTER MANGANYI NA TINTSUMI TA TILO
Ndzi Teke Riendzo No.1
Honest Jon’s Records
CD // £10.99

Foster Manganyi’s ‘Ndzi Teke Riendzo’ is Honest Jon’s compelling follow up to the shocking ‘Shangaan Electro’ comp of a few months back. Recorded in 2008 and originally released on cassette, it’s the work of a pastor from Giyani, Limpopo, South Africa, and shares much of the Shangaan sound’s preference for, dry, skittering drum machines, melodic marimba percussion, whistles, and those unmistakably South African vocal harmonies. But there’s one fundamental difference;…
VARIOUS / HONEST JON’S RECORDS
Something Is Wrong: Vintage Recordings From East Africa
Honest Jon’s Records
2CD // £14.99

Closing an immense year for Honest Jon’s, 35 precious selections from East Africa spanning the mid-1930s till the mid-1950s. Taking full advantage of unprecedented access to EMI’s treasured archives in Hayes, Middlesex, HJ’s drew from more than 400 sides in the HMV MA series: 10″ 78rpm ‘Native Records’, a set of recordings made in Africa, pressed in the UK and sent back to Africa, aimed at native Africans rather than…
VARIOUS / HONEST JON’S RECORDS
Bellyachers, Listen: Songs From East Africa, 1938-46
Honest Jon’s Records
2LP // £13.99

The first half of two captivating collections from Honest Jon’s, including seventeen vintage songs from East Africa (Kenya and Uganda) recorded between 1938-46. Taking full advantage of unprecedented access to EMI’s treasured archives in Hayes, Middlesex, HJ’s drew from more than 400 sides in the HMV MA series: 10″ 78rpm ‘Native Records’, a set of recordings made in Africa, pressed in the UK and sent back to Africa, aimed at…
VARIOUS / HONEST JON’S RECORDS
Something Is Wrong: Songs From East Africa, 1952-7
Honest Jon’s Records
2LP // £13.99

The second half of two captivating collections from Honest Jon’s, including eighteen vintage songs from East Africa (Kenya and Uganda) recorded between 1952-7. Taking full advantage of unprecedented access to EMI’s treasured archives in Hayes, Middlesex, HJ’s drew from more than 400 sides in the HMV MA series: 10″ 78rpm ‘Native Records’, a set of recordings made in Africa, pressed in the UK and sent back to Africa, aimed at…
FOSTER MANGANYI NA TINTSUMI TA TILO
Ndzi Teke Riendzo No.1
Honest Jon’s Records
2LP // £13.99

Foster Manganyi’s ‘Ndzi Teke Riendzo’ is Honest Jon’s compelling follow up to the shocking ‘Shangaan Electro’ comp of a few months back. Recorded in 2008 and originally released on cassette, it’s the work of a pastor from Giyani, Limpopo, South Africa, and shares much of the Shangaan sound’s preference for, dry, skittering drum machines, melodic marimba percussion, whistles, and those unmistakably South African vocal harmonies. But there’s one fundamental difference;…
VARIOUS / SOUNDWAY
The Sound Of Siam: Leftfield Luk Thung, Jazz And Molam From Thailand 1964 – 1975
Soundway Records Ltd
CD // £11.99

‘The Sound of Siam’ is Soundway’s first foray into the cracked world of Asian music and thankfully manages to achieve the same head-expanding quality the label has become synonymous with. Tripping beween jazz, funk, easy listening, lounge and who knows what else, this nineteen track compilation is a daring, haphazard look into Thailand’s rarely heard underground music scene. The skeleton of traditional Thai music is there somewhere, but these tracks…
VARIOUS / WORLD PSYCHEDELIC FUNK CLASSICS
Psych Funk Sa-Re-Ga!
WORLD PSYCHEDELIC FUNK CLASSICS
CD // £12.99

Eyes forward, kids, for the 2nd mind-melting ‘Psych Funk’ comp, covering “Aesthetic Expressions of Psychedelic Funk Music In India: 1970-1983”. Featuring 20 Indian psych-funk masterpieces and accompanied by a 52-page, in-depth color booklet, this is about the most comprehensive, nuanced and knowledgeable document of this topic you’ll find, compiled by the very trustworthy heads behind the ‘Psych Funk 101’ session and the awesome ‘Brazilian Guitar Fuzz Bananas’. Almost unsurprisingly there’s…
FM3 / CHAN FANG
Buddha Machine Generation III – Clear Black
FM3
LOOP PLAYER // £12.99

Aural bliss in a see-thru box! The all-new, third-gen Buddha Machine from Beijing duo Christiaan Virant and Zhang Jian. Pure, crystal-clear melody. Four extended-play loops. Advanced 12K audio quality and “deja-vu” translucent styling make Chan Fang the freshest Buddha ever! Chan Fang, which translates as “Zen Room,” sees the duo swap drones and tones from their first two Buddha releases for unadulterated classical loops. All tracks were composed and performed…
FM3 / CHAN FANG
Buddha Machine Generation III – Clear Blue
FM3
LOOP PLAYER // £12.99

Aural bliss in a see-thru box! The all-new, third-gen Buddha Machine from Beijing duo Christiaan Virant and Zhang Jian. Pure, crystal-clear melody. Four extended-play loops. Advanced 12K audio quality and “deja-vu” translucent styling make Chan Fang the freshest Buddha ever! Chan Fang, which translates as “Zen Room,” sees the duo swap drones and tones from their first two Buddha releases for unadulterated classical loops. All tracks were composed and performed…
FM3 / CHAN FANG
Buddha Machine Generation III – Clear Green
FM3
LOOP PLAYER // £12.99

Aural bliss in a see-thru box! The all-new, third-gen Buddha Machine from Beijing duo Christiaan Virant and Zhang Jian. Pure, crystal-clear melody. Four extended-play loops. Advanced 12K audio quality and “deja-vu” translucent styling make Chan Fang the freshest Buddha ever! Chan Fang, which translates as “Zen Room,” sees the duo swap drones and tones from their first two Buddha releases for unadulterated classical loops. All tracks were composed and performed…
FM3 / CHAN FANG
Buddha Machine Generation III – Clear Red
FM3
LOOP PLAYER // £12.99

Aural bliss in a see-thru box! The all-new, third-gen Buddha Machine from Beijing duo Christiaan Virant and Zhang Jian. Pure, crystal-clear melody. Four extended-play loops. Advanced 12K audio quality and “deja-vu” translucent styling make Chan Fang the freshest Buddha ever! Chan Fang, which translates as “Zen Room,” sees the duo swap drones and tones from their first two Buddha releases for unadulterated classical loops. All tracks were composed and performed…
FM3 / CHAN FANG
Buddha Machine Generation III – Opaque
FM3
LOOP PLAYER // £12.99

Aural bliss in a see-thru box! The all-new, third-gen Buddha Machine from Beijing duo Christiaan Virant and Zhang Jian. Pure, crystal-clear melody. Four extended-play loops. Advanced 12K audio quality and “deja-vu” translucent styling make Chan Fang the freshest Buddha ever! Chan Fang, which translates as “Zen Room,” sees the duo swap drones and tones from their first two Buddha releases for unadulterated classical loops. All tracks were composed and performed…
RIKKI ILIONGA & MUSI-O-TUNYA
Dark Sunrise
Now Again
3LP Deluxe Box // £49.99

Now Again present ‘Dark Sunrise’, an anthology of Zambian “Zam-Rock” godfather Rikki Ililonga and his groundbreaking band Musi-O-Tunya. The anthology surveys Musi-O-Tunya’s rarely heard 7“ singles (not just the first psychedelic rock music, but the first pop music independently released in Zambia), their debut album ‘Wings Of Africa’, and follows Ililonga’s solo career in its first stages, with his ‘Zambia’ and ‘Sunshine Love’ albums. While global psychedelic rock and funk…