Music Reviews



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Artist: Break/Detail
Title: Steamtrain/Days Go By
Format: 12"
Label: Symmetry Recordings (@)
Rated: *****
In the wake of his acclaimed hits on his own label Symmetry Recordings, Mr.Charlie Bierman aka Break released another tidbit by implementing his sonic prosody and rhythmical engine on a steam train on this amazing track, where samples of choo-choo train and the relentless stream of biting sounds, ferocious chomping of metallic clicks, hitting refills, dull rolling scrap iron wedge in a double-jointed amazing tune, simply titled "Steamtrain" (what you read is what you listen), which could let you think about the tuning of a ramshackle train into a spaceship according to a bizarre declension of retrofuturism. On the flipside, young Ukrainian producer Daniil Marin aka Detail, whose recent track "Green Rain" dropped on Utopia Music imprint, harmonize with concerned but delicately haunting vocals by Russian singer Tiiu on "Days Go By", whose slightly portentous atmosphere got amplified by a sneaking low frequency that Detail lets play and expand by nourishment of dry hits, syncopated clips, precise cutting and oleaginous bassline.
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Artist: Thrash Pilot
Title: Firewalker/Calisthenics
Format: 12"
Label: Killscreen Recordings
Rated: *****
Another "welcome back!" within the drum and bass scene is the one that many followers could address to Jim Kennedy, whose last release with the alias "Thrash Pilot" dates back to 1999 on Manchester-based label Abstrakt Recordings. His renaissance follows a long time of silence, which he reasoned out on the basis of the disillusion with the commercial directions dnb was following, so that he thought fit to come back by riding a new release and a brand new label, Killscreen, whose mission (bring back the darkness, keep it fresh, never imitate) sounds somehow intriguing. Besides manifestoes, the most persuading declaration of stylistical intent comes directly from Thrash Pilot's sonic equipment, which impresses upon Killscreen the seriousness of the above-mentioned mission: "Calisthenics" takes a sort of rhythmical bifurcation where dark dubstep dovetails ballistic breakcore and ecstatic moments of ambient entrancement where the sequence of inner variations are unpredictable, but absolutely homogeneous and this juggling skill by Jim, which shows an impressive mastery with percussive and sonic triggers, is likewise undisguised on the following track "Firewalker", a fey concatenation of menacing sonorities, hot pursuits, relaxing breaks, deluges of metallic clicks and hauling drums, whose general cohesion could let you think they're parts of a linear plot which look up to actions which could sound similar to some forerunning masterpieces with the prestigious imprint of Renegade Hardware or Metalheadz.
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Artist: Chimpo (@)
Title: Frontline EP
Format: 12"
Label: Soul:R (@)
Rated: *****
If you know some Japanese loan words into slang idiom, you could snigger when I say that Chimpo got ensnared in the tangles of Manchester-based label Marcus Intalex's Soul:R. Gruesome slang-induced inferences aside, Soul:r cannot but pick something in plenty from the interesting Manchester underground scene and decided to rise the talented producer, mc and dj Chimpo from those abyssal realms to the overground, who suddenly stick the listener and switch off the light by the impressive title-track "Frontline", whose abyssal dim lights of scorched and cryptic sonorities, corrosive basslines, slapping claps, sinister echoes, stomping slow beats perfectly adhere to the raging toasting by Fox, talent mc who received the mic by Chimpo and sound good in the revamped remix by Calibre, who raised the level of bpm, kick drums and junglist appeal by a sonic solution which sounds liquid and obscure at the same time. On this amazing EP, you'll also find "All Over", whose initial chopped beats unfold a daydreaming and pensive song, which could bring listeners back to the age of more "mystical" moments of 90ies jungle and drumfunk, and "Buzzin", where Dub Phizix and Skeptical played a part in the assembling of an involving grime stepped time bomb, whose terser strokes, red-hot massive beat pressure, torn matsuri-like thuds are really captivating. Very good and well-welcomed resurface.
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Artist: Frigidaire Tango
Title: The Cock The Original Demotape 1980
Format: 12"
Label: Synthetic Shadows Records (@)
Rated: *****
Frigidaire Tango's starts in 1977 when Carlo Casale and Stefano Dal Col met in Liberta square in Bassano Del Grappa. Carlo just visited London with a black Shathesbury's guitar. Soon after, the duo with Maurizio Simeoni started to play and formed Outkids. With Alberto Gomiero on bass guitar they started to play live. After several line-up changes, in 1979, they changed name and became Thrash. Influenced by punk and Roxy Music, the band started to play live. In October 1980, Alessandro Chioatto joined them on sax and they recorded a 15 tracks demo tape. That tape would have been brought to London by Mrs Alex, the first Italian journalist to move to join the new wave but in November, the Italian label Young Records decided to offer them a record deal. That was the official born of Frigidaire Tango. In 1981 the band started the recordings of their first album, "The Cock", which hut the records stores on February 1982. The year after they released a self produced E.P.titled "Russian Dolls"and participated to "Body Section", the second compilation produced by the Italian magazine Rockerilla. After participating to other three compilations (two volumes of Rockgarage and "P.E.A.C.E."), the band had major line-up changes which mined their stability. On the positive side, they had the I.R.A. label that was interested into checking them and they did a lot of gigs but this wasn't enough. Different members started playing with other bands or producing other bands and the fact that I.R.A. didn't contacted them yet didn't helped and Frigidaire Tango split up. The story of the band didn't end here, because few years ago the reformed and recorded a new album changing musical style but this is another story. With this review I want to talk to you about the Synthetic Shadows Records release of eleven out of fifteen songs coming from those 1980 recordings. "The Cock The Original Demotape 1980" is a perfect way to discover a band that was able to mix punk and new wave in a fresh energetic wave and if you didn't purchase "The Freezer Box" the compilation CD box, back in 2006, this is your chance to listen to tracks like "Be Only", "Push", "Black Curtains"or "Anytime You Dress So Fine". On those tracks dissonance, melody and energy blend perfectly thanks to razor cut guitars, catchy sax lines, seducing synth sounds and the neurotic vocals of Charlie Out Cazale. Great release!
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Artist: Anile (@)
Title: All This Time/That Night
Format: 12"
Label: DeepKut/C.I.A.
Rated: *****
Skillful dnb producer Matthew Tapp, who already spread a number of variations of his 170bpm fast moving style over many spots in different dancing European stages as well over many top labels such as Commercial Suicide, Ingredients, Medschool, Proximity in 2012 under the guise of Anile and by means of many guessed collaborations (particularly those with Dakosa, Hybrid Minds and Foreign Concept), is going to propagate his music, which gained the support by notorious names of the scene such as total Science, Goldie, SPY, Marcus Intalex, Laurent Garnier and many others, on different memeber of dnb nobility. He dock on C.I.A.'s sister label Deepkut by a couple of high quality tracks, where his riveting accelerations move close to the banks of liquid declension of dnb in league with the softening female voices by Hannah Eve, who glides on the sonic hovercraft of wood clicks, dry kicks, vaguely melancholic piano-driven three-phased chord progression, expanding delays and sparkling sonorities of "All This Time", and Jess Brinham, whose warmer timbre and somehow clouded vocal interpretation perfectly brushes lovely lush piano melodies and the borderline feelings evoked by fast-rewinding nostalgic lumps on "That Night". A persuading proof of souldful classy rhythmical swirling.
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