Music Reviews

Metope: Atlantic EP

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
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Sep 08 2011
Artist: Metope (@)
Title: Atlantic EP
Format: Download Only (MP3 only)
Label: Factor City (@)
Distributor: Decoder Muzique
Rated: *****
Interesting debut on the young Factor City label by the hectic Michael Schwanen aka Metope - the Berlin based producer is also active member of the promotional agency Omega Oz and of the known trio leading Beachcoma Recording, completed by his Canadian friends Pan/Tone (who also played live with Metope's Cereal Killers) and Fairmont, performing some appreciated lives -. His "love for digital" as well as his skills on NI machines, which are intensively used during his dj-sets, surfaces from the very first bits of the title-track of this tech-housey bauble: the bumpy metronome doesn't stop even during temporary "melodic" medleys and your imagination could easily get influenced by the title, Atlantic, so that the continuous rhythmical stream could keep the course of it over the wide ruffling of oceanic waves whereas the following track partizan could keep on blowing on canvas with his chirruping sounds, finger snaps and gummy bass-tones. Good tracks even if my favorite one is Ghost, the third sketch included in this EP, mainly for the appreciable intrigue on filter knobs as well the most stressed evanescence (or I'd better say abstractness) of its sound. The release has been enriched by three remixes: to be honest, the first one of Atlantic by Dave Dk sounds nothing special, looking more like a sort of card shuffling, while the same track remixed by Undo is definitively more interesting for the way the Spanish producer re-assembled it mirroring his unique style, based on the progressive combination of elements gradually combined on a monotonal stream, flowing like paper boats on the water of a river on the point of flooding. By the way the most convincing remix is the one of Ghost by John Daly, a sort of dub-housey structure featuring a good use of effects on synth lines of the original samples.

Butane and Someone Else: Dink Touching EP

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
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Sep 08 2011
Artist: Butane and Someone Else (@)
Title: Dink Touching EP
Format: 12"
Label: Foundsound (@)
Distributor: Kompakt
Rated: *****
I sometimes get wondered a seemengly non-sensical techno track could have a certain picaresque grip. If you don't know which kind of person is a dink toucher, you'll need maybe a short explanation on such a human genre, forcefully arising in modern society. You'll easily identify him/her from his/her behaviour as he/she will rarely entertain deep relationship, but it's the typically super-nice smart aleck (or better it appears in such a way) you'll instinctively want as a friend or as a companion of adventure as a socially acceptable welcome distraction! But it's very frequent you'll (a true lie?) complaint about him/her with your partner arguably for his/her excess of superficiality, even if a professional dink toucher could be more than just a good fellow! Many sightings of such a kind of humanity have been recorded in shots inside disco clubs as they normally touches dink of cutie dancers exhibiting different kinds of scraggy facial expressions! Vocal whimpering and hitting lowing inserted in this driving minimal techno rhythmical pattern featuring many nice beat gimmicks by Andrew Rass aka Butane (owner of Alphahouse label) and Foundsound co-founder Sean O'Neal aka Someone Else, after they virtually fused their minds by founding the label Little Helpers could evoke the mentioned sightings. Amidst the three remixes included in this release, I've enjoyed the crunchy one (Butane's Strip Club mix) made by Butane himself and the Sterni Edit by Agaric, who decides to remove the melody after highlighting it in the previous remix...some nice samples of beat juggling! You will also find a track entitled Etard - a strange way to let indie rock tunes interfering into tech-house streams - as well as two remixes of it, the first one (really catching) by Catenaccio's founder Benjamin Fehr - adding a darker shadow on the blissful luminous vapours of the original track - and the second one by Figdet, who churns out an appreciable exaple of deep shoegazing techno. This Ep is everything but rinky-dink finger training on Traktor!

NO SURRENDER : medicine babies

 Posted by Andrea Ferraris (@)   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Aug 31 2011
image not
Title: medicine babies
Format: CD
Label: Zerokilled (@)
Weird, I think that's the first time I review a cd so blatantly dance oriented and that's a real pity, probably it has to do with the fact the majority of the music I review (and the majority of the materials I write about in Chaindlk) stands somewhere else. Electro-house production 4/4 tempo with male female vocals as it's supposed to be, a a good production but still not as boombastic as someone may expect from a cd like that. The music is cathcy, really dance till you drop with a poppy vein pulsing underneath and your usual "back to the eighties" sensation. Synths, a bit of guitar, vocal driving the tracks and a hell of a taste for melodies and that's probably the best quality of this project. The fact No Surrender are able to put together well written tracks can be demostrated by the fact while listening to the cd I was moving my feet to the rhythm of the music. Somewhere else they have a bit of rap music melted in the cocktail and it also reminded me of Beam and some Anti Pop Consortium, but this definitley more dancy. Still to be refined but a good start.

Solvent: RDJCS5 EP

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
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Aug 24 2011
Artist: Solvent (@)
Title: RDJCS5 EP
Format: 12"
Label: Suction (@)
Rated: *****
In my life, I've met many spendthrift fetishists who rival with other compulsive bidders to pursue the knocking-down for many bizarre objects, often with no real value in use and consequently overpaid, just because they belonged to some famous figure. I've nothing to complain about it to be honest, but I wonder how many people waste money just to stock them in a dusty showcase or inside a trunk whenever they change furniture. You should know that there's a considerably huge market for used musical instruments, where you can even buy off-key guitars, cracked organs or nibbled plectrums for a huge amount of money, which can be just redeemed with some certificate of authenticity, bearing witness to its previous famous owner (it's sometimes reccomendable to check fingerprints if the auctioner didn't wipe them out indeed!) ...well, many people are persuaded that a portion of the creative wit can be ideally engraved in the object he used, a sort of hallmark of the genius! Maybe Solvent's friend who spent $1200 for an old Yamaha CS5, owned by Richard David James aka Aphex Twin, being seemingly part of the audio equipment for Selected Ambient Works Vol.II (as it's explicitly mentioned in the linear notes of that great record) could have justified his purchase at VEMIA auction - acronym for Vintage Electric Musical Instrument Auctions, a private auction held twice a year where you can buy a lot of instruments, previously played by notorious musicians - after such a deduction, as it's quite difficult to admit it was a good bargain, as some friend of mine bought the same instrument for half a price (or even less) from some obscure repairer's workshop, even if on the occasion of another famous VEMIA auction, some anonymous bidder bought an EMS Synthi from Brian Eno for just £16.000! By the way, this guy had at least the good idea to entrust this glorious machine to a skilled friend, Solvent, who managed to create an EP, he entitled RDJCS5 - RDJ are the initials of Richard D.James -, where he gives a demonstration of his compositional skills in assembling 4 nice electro tracks in spite of the limits of this little synth. Most of them, particularly Radiator and Tassels, remind some pieces of sound artillery on AFX's Analords, while the first one, Curtains, could remove the dust from some musical memories related to the very first tunes by Bochum Welt or even some "lighter" tracks by Lowfish for the "dadaist" insert of an atmospheric programming of the oscillators. If you decide to buy the 12" vynil limited edition, you will also find a bonus track, entitled Sandpaper, which is a sort of drone a lot of djs are going to enjoy. A nice release which could persuade you to lend your dusty music machines to Suction's studios!
Artist: Falko Brocksieper (@)
Title: Alkem Nukem EP
Format: CD EP
Label: False Industries (@)
Distributor: i-tunes
Rated: *****
False Industries' folks are keeping their promise to the listeners about stocking their catalogue to a line of action inspired by the purpose of upkeeping the highest qualitative levels they can reach and this 4th release, signed by Falko Brocksieper, one of the father of the so-called sound of Cologne and founder of Sub Static (together with Mia Grobelny) and Karloff - two important brands in electronic music nowadays - bragging about a plenty of releases for renowned labels such as Resopal, Tongut, Tribstoff, Tuning Spork, Dumb Unit, whose style based on the hybridization of minimal techno with analog sound with an immediate hypnotical hook - I could reccomend to listen to his second album Heavy Day on Sub Static to have an idea of his sound -, which many other notorious producers (Sid Le Rock, Akufen, Gabriel Ananda, Benjamin Fehr, just to name a few) who asked remixes to him, corroborates such a noble purpose. In order to pursue the label's intent, Falko didn't assemble any techno tune, but leant towards some sonic solutions between computational textures and broken ambient paracentesis (the astonishingly cinematic wet catharsis of Westfalia with his powerful ultra-low frequencies and the hypnotical clicking of the beat-blemished Mellica - my favorite track - are great examples of this crossbreed) as well as an experimental approach, where he mixed together in an intriguing way different sonic elements such as in the title-track, Alkem Nukem (it's eloquent the fact Falko choosed the names of two German companies, who build atomic reactors, to give a name to this issue), where he inserted dripping bleeps and padded pulses inside the sulphuric cloud evaporating from a sort of processed white noise, and The Boy Who Turned Yellow, where he assembled a sort of orchestra from miniaturized and "muted" sounds including a "dirty" snare drum, some vocal syllabic samples - turned into percussive elements - and woods, a kind of musical cryonics who reminded to me some past tracks by Riou Tomita. This EP also includes two remixes of Westfalia - the former by NY-based Morgan Packard (Anticipate) where the original track sounds desiccated before injected in the chilling micro-dub groove, while in the latter Mark Van Hoen aka Locust (my favorite remix) manages to tighten the strings through a downbeat stepping on highly tense analog sequences - and two remixes of Mellica - a delicious arctic dubbed silent riding by the Canadian brothers Thibideau aka Repair and a sort of weird and nightmarish childplay by Benjamin Fehr and Lenique -.

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