Klanken – Untitled (Deewee DEEWEE002 – 2015)

klankenOut of nowhere comes Klanken – the first artist on the newly founded Belgian label Deewee, which is set up in Ghent by David and Stephen Dewaele, both so far known as 2 Many DJ’s or Soulwax. The first thing to say is that Klanken should not be mixed up with the Dutch artist Klankman, although their sounds have quite a few things in common.

The single’s ‘Kant A’ (‘A-side’) gives a clear proof about a new undercover agent joining the Benelux-based operations of robust acid electro, along the likes of Ekman, Shitcluster or Unit Moebius Anonymous. Nerdy yet tense synth lines are topped by eerie moaning and the only downside is the shortness, about four minutes, of the inaugural track. The flip offers a bit more tempo and a funkier take of devilish grooves and crushed vocal samples recall Baby Ford’s T-Rex cover “Children Of The Revolution”.

Both sides have lead-out grooves and the vinyl comes in printed inner sleeve that comes with masses of static electricity, at least it was my experience when removing the record first time.

Points: 9 of 10

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Artur Lääts – Apollo EP (Mürk Records MRKR001 – 2015)

mrk001_p0uArtur Lääts was one of the DJs at the launch party of Mürk (Poison), a series of techno nights in Tallinn. That moment, he and Mürk’s promotor Hugo Murutar hardly thought, maybe only dreamed, about conceiving a self-titled record label. But after running a kickstarter campaign, Mürk Records became reality and the inaugural MRKR001 was officially released in September.

Lääts can’t be regarded as a freshman, because already in 2010 he debuted on Contrast-R (Belgium), followed by a cyclonic digi EP on the Australian label Gynoid Audio. For the vinyl debut, Lääts has dropped his earlier Glitchfxx moniker, which might indicate “Apollo EP” is about a new phase for the artist.

Vast amounts of techno releases that hit the shelves every week might raise a question, what is special about this particular one? Firstly, seeing a fellow Estonian going wax is important for the local scene and secondly, two original tracks are mature enough to suggest them both to the fans and to people who have shunned techno so far.

Moderately paced title track offers bold techno grooves that are arising from Detroit’s depths, recalling Beltram’s bass arrangements and Hood’s synth blasts. Of darker breed is “Stratskas”, which  runs on a thundering vocal effect (‘I just want to dance with you’ and so on) and carries some Chicago house influences. Only an oversize break at the mid-track would leave the crowd puzzled for a moment. Berlin producer and DJ Thomas Hessler dwells on the B-side with a fluent rework of the title cut, which is a safe bet for DJ sets. 

With the start done, we may just hope that both the juvenile label and Lääts keep exploring and new material will be in the pipeline soon.

Points: 7 of 10

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This review was initially published in the Estonian monthly Müürileht.

Donato Dozzy – The Loud Silence (Further Recordings FUR 058LP/CD – 2015)


Yambo, the main character in Umberto Eco’s novel “The Mysterious Flame of Queen Loana”, returns to the childhood home for a memory recovery. For getting cured, he is browsing childhood memorabilia – books, magazines, vinyl records, thus delving into the popular culture from the beginning of the 1930s.

Leaving aside the memory loss, there are some parallels between the novel and “The Loud Silence”, a new experimental album by the Eco’s fellow countryman Donato Dozzy. After the sessions at his parents’ house in the Italian countryside, Dozzy unleashes the potential of an ultimately hypnotic device, a predecessor of all 303s and 707s – the mouth harp that inspired him as a child.

Mouth harp or Jew’s harp is an indigenous instrument familiar to many nations in Asia or Europe and often used in the world music. Among others, it has also led the Estonian artist Pp Kaubi to produce some ‘dance’ tracks.

The instrument had been luring Dozzy since the childhood, after a holiday in Sicily when Dozzy discovered the ‘marranzano’, or ‘scacciapensieri’. In the new album this affection is transferred to the present day.

Already Dozzy’s recent single “Cassandra” on Claque Musique, where “II” is a beatless mouth harp jam, could be seen as a teaser for the album. Now “The Loud Silence” is a personal and inward-looking sound document that merges the ancient instrument with field recordings and electronic effects. According to the label, Dozzy’s LP is recorded indoors and outdoors, half-way up mountains and on the shores of the Mediterranean. When surfing on the sounds, one might imagine Dozzy sitting on the porch or in the shadow of an olive tree, surrounded by humming bees and sweet aromas on the South.

In the opener “Personal Rock” and the title track “The Loud Silence”, mouth harp’s vibrations are in unison with processed voice fragments, which are like run through an antique vocoder. After a flow of minimalist textures, “Cross Panorama” adapts thundering notes and thereafter stumbling offbeat does not leave any doubts of being stuck into “The Net”. “For Arnaud” shows the dance floor drive of its kind, similarly to the seesaw pattern in the “Downhill To The Sea”. “Concert For Sails” is a pixelated field recording from the seaside and the closing track, slithering “Exit The Acropolis”, recalls the best offerings of the 1990s psy-trance tunes.

After the success of “K”, an album which saw even a reissue of gigantic 2000 copies, Dozzy’s return to Seattle’s Further Recordings required something more than only a modification of “K”. “The Loud Silence” is Dozzy’s triumphant artistic break from the club buzz and underlines his exceptional status as a modern electronic composer.

Points: 10 of 10

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Various – Grey City (ZCKR 10 – 2015)

zckr_grey_cityZCKR Records is an independent label from Bremen, a city in Northern Germany and the smallest Bundesland. Historically, Bremen is known for its fairy-tale Town Musicians, four animals who formed a band and scared off a thief with dissonant, shrill improvisations. No need to be afraid of ZCKR, although the label and its artists are keen to explore the wilder side of (electronic) music.

After outstanding 12-inches by surrealist sound writer Anom Vitruv and emerging local producer Qnete, ZCKR’s tenth vinyl release gives a snapshot of the local scene, in the first label compilation “Grey City”.

Diversity is the tagline throughout 11 tracks that take off with 37 seconds of sheer noise by NorÐurgata and a luminescent IDM jam by another newcomer Tal (“Static”). Steely tech-funk in PreciousPandaExperience’s “Fragile” recalls techno bastions like Sativae or Perc Trax, and after Shepard Tone’s nocturnal noise experiments in “Machine In The Ghost”, Spröde Lippen’s melancholy invites to a lonely heart bar (“Einstellungen”). Adel Akram, one of the label’s curators, rounds up the A-side with a straight techno loop.

Breaklab introduces the B-side with a beatless mashup of drones and industrial (“23 Tracks”) and in similar experimental vein are “01-4A / Bremen-Delhi” by Abstract Pictures, HSV’s wall of noise “Kind Of Blue”, which could be a peculiar tribute to Hamburg’s foremost football club, and a more streamlined attempt, glitchy “Sanctuary” by Robin.
However, the compilation’s best cut comes from the Drowned Records artist Tobs, who shows floor qualities in breakbeat-ish “HB Hardcore” and loops the rave age sample “U make me feel so good)”.

The vinyl designed by Sebastian Reuschel and mastered by Stefan Betke aka Pole, comes with a download card.

The story of grey

Bremen’s maritime climate and also the mood in the local electronic music scene explains the ‘grey’ aspect, told to Terminal 313 the label owner Sebastian Reuschel, who appears as Abstract Pictures in the compilation.

“Only a handful of people are trying to make something different [in the music scene] and it’s very hard to work here, to do your thing and not lose your motivation. That all describes our grey city”, Reuschel says. “We had the idea of a ‘big’ sampler with lot of people we know and we invited to draw a musical picture of all that. A snapshot of the moment, to open doors and trying to create something like an impulse”.

According to Reuschel, the selected artists are a mix of newcomers and more experienced ones, who had to have a link to the city. Although Qnete is missing in the sampler, Reuschel has some good news about the Bremen upstart: His track “Grey City Anthem”, too late and too long (about 11 minutes) for the sampler, will be released separately on ZCKR in the near future.

Points: 7 of 10

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Damaskin – Ancient Communications (Noiztank NTK003 – 2015)


Noiztank’s inaugural repertoire promised a new addition to the saturated market of industrial techno. The armoured outfit from Vienna launched the robust factory noise offensive with two releases by the label’s co-founder Zosima. After the EPs “Tears Of Black Powder” and “A Lady From Siberia”, the latter featuring a remix by Kareem, Noiztank continues with abrasive techno tracks by Damaskin.

The Belgium based artist, who debuted with a torture chamber session for Unknown Percept and played safe in his next release, goes ahead with grainy electronic escapades to bring Noiztank closer to techno’s core structures.

All four tracks are produced with floor domination in the mind. The opener “Propaganda” excels with shrill sequences to create a semi-acidic feel while shuffling stomper “Ancient Communications” addresses primitive instincts. “Entrance” rises from a minimalist backdrop and thin textures to a full-fledged acid journey of nine minutes and the noisiest moments arrive in “Catacomb”, a light-shunning creature from beneath, which reminds of Holy Ghost’s material from the 1990s.

Sufficiently dirty, like a wasteground scene with burning plastic and toxic spills, yet groovy is “Ancient Communications”, Noiztank’s and Damaskin’s best release so far.

Points: 8 of 10

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Coopers – Maximal Fun EP (Dum Records DUM 031 – 2015)

22524_10153482247474084_7561612652528414653_nAfter strong comeback numbers on Forbidden Planet and Skudge, Kimmo Rapatti aka Mono Junk decided to blow off the dust from Dum Records, his 1990s cult label that had been hibernating since 2007. The Finnish imprint returns with “Maximal Fun EP” by Coopers, in its original 1994 composition of Rapatti himself and Jukka Kaartinen.

Two seasoned gentlemen stick to vintage formulas and their singing acid sequences radiate real old school feel. “Indian Acid” and extra long “Maximal Fun” are bright and rolling tunes, perfectly composed for the warmth of Indian summer, while warehouse fans will find their satisfaction in the grinding acid stomper “Ixam”.

The label’s next release under the catalogue number DUM 032 will be a reissue of Rapatti’s two classics, “Channel B” and “Monotone Fantastique” and after that we hope to see more of dazzling new productions on Dum.

Points: 8 of 10

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Kahn, Commodo & Gantz – Volume 1 (Deep Medi Musik MEDILP011 – 2015)


Dubstep and bass music has not caught much of my attention. Perhaps I missed the first wave of innovative productions and didn’t find excitement in later releases, when the genre moved closer to dance music’s mainstream.

However, my ignorance has neither been deliberate nor total because since Goth-Trad EP, I’m having a crush on one label, Deep Medi Musik. Being one of the genre’s best outlets, it’s renowned for many artistic endeavours of unreal dub-tinged bass.

Kahn has been ruling with recent delirious material like “Abattoir” and “Dread / Late Night Blues (Gorgon Sound Versions)” and has now joined fellow producers Commodo and Gantz for six tracks under the banner of “Volume 1”. Pressed in double vinyl, it contains about 24 minutes of music and offers a lot, when loaded riddims meet toxic folk themes inspired by the Middle East.

The highlight is “Amk”, where a sneering jinn becomes social between the walls of medina, the party proceeding with opiate Oriental horns and shuffling heavyweight bass. Faltering rhythms and dramatic female whispering keep the meditative mood in “So Familia”, while the wake-up call titled “Kibosh” invites to tango electronica and “Crystal Collect” is a showdown gruesome bass sequences and MC effects. A great match to “Amk” is provocatively titled “Bitchcraft” with tense strings and manic Ofra Haza-style vocal part and street cred anthem “Unmistakable” wraps it all up.  

Dubstep trinity has completed an exceptional EP, which will embrace a community larger than the genre’s fans. Stream it in full here.

Points: 10 of 10

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Dungeon Acid – The Move (Stockholm LTD STHLMLTD 035 – 2015)

STHLM LTD 035 DIGIFor a dance track, the length is usually an asset and this notion has been valued since historical creations like “Acid Tracks” or “French Kiss”, both spread over ten minutes. Now Dungeon Acid suggests that 12 minutes of your precious life could be spent in the company of compelling Point Chaud remix of “The Move”, which fills the A-side of Stockholm LTD’s new release.

The track which is not connected with “Move”, the artist’s 2013 piece on Detroit’s FIT, goes in the footsteps of classic Chicago workouts, in the form of a germinating acid house derivative. A gripping affair from the very beginning, it swerves through multi-layered percussion and at the mid-track it’s like (DJ) Hell breaking loose with the Traxx rework “Passionate!” for a climax on the floor.

The B-side belongs to the Stockholm LTD boss Pär Grindvik, who drops two technoid tolknings or interpretations of the original. Relying on bass-driven techno’s main ingredients, “Étude” is less imaginative, but “Beyond The Move” is a flawless piece meandering in analogue maze.

Although the Dungeon Acid project emerged only in 2010, the producer Jean-Louis Huhta, has been part of the (Swedish) techno scene since the 1990s, with releases on Svek, Hybrid, Börft and many other labels.

Points: 8 of 10


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Juju & Jordash – Down To The Roach EP (Dekmantel DKMNTL026 – 2015)


After the self-titled debut album in 2009, Juju & Jordash have stayed close to Dekmantel, a label in their chosen home Netherlands, where the Isreali-born producers also issued the next two longplayers, “Techno Primitivism” and “Clean-Cut”.

“Down To The Roach” is their new tool for the club use and it triggers many flashbacks. To start with, it’s wrong to assume that Roach and motel, seen in the track titles, refer to Heller & Farley who ran the Roach Motel project a couple of decades ago. Instead, the cuts look over the ocean, at the house tracks from around the Great Lakes.

The title tune is a casual (or Cajual) drum roller with high-pitched voice of a daydreamer, with audible parallels to Boo Williams and his “Old School Flavor”. Hitch-hiker jive “Bean Bag Motel” hits after the dissonant intro with ass-shaking repetitions and “Lights At Night” recall Gemini’s “Moment Of Insanity”, before the title’s dub version wraps it up.

Points: 7 of 10

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Ten f*ck tracks

Scan0005 (2)

Nordcore flyer from the 1990s

We can’t speak of the ‘fuck’ shortage in the music around us, as there are about 50,000 related hits in Discogs. Although the word itself is not enough for rebellion, the artists feel often tempted to see ‘fuck’ as a way to self-expression, which has led to a number of tracks balancing between the good and the bad taste, more the latter.

Obviously, ballads are not the genre where we should look around while music breeds like punk and hardcore or ghetto and booty bass provide a lot of thematic material. The following selection represents mostly artists and labels I can recall from earlier days. Something you should not show to your (future) mother-in-law,







Mark Forshaw – The Fuck (Berceuse Heroique)
Let’s start with the present day: Out on maverick label Berceuse Heroique this summer, “The Fuck” is the actual inspiration for the list. Check also Jamal Moss remix on the flip.


Biochip C. – Fucking Evil (Force Inc. Music Works)
Hellraiser vibes from a breakbeat & hardcore champion over 20 years ago.


Reyes – Fuck You (K.N.O.R.)
Gabber years offered a plenty of obscenities, including a lot of dumbness, but this one is a real belter.


Nasty Django – Ey Loco! (Dance Ecstasy 2001)
From the “Ey Fukkas! EP” by Nasty Django, one of Marc Acardipane’s countless projects, anchored to the hoovers and kicks drum.


Euromasters – Noiken In Die koiken / Neuken in de Keuken (Rotterdam Records)
Gabber kids used to freak out to this silly one. Your Dutch friends will translate the title.


DJ Hyperactive – Kala Ulu (Drop Bass Network)
Midwest hardcorps stylee: A mighty cut from the EP “Don’t Fuck With Chicago”.


Karen Finley – Tales Of Taboo (Pow Wow Art International)
The original shocker girl, teaching this and that. It’s not so much about the lyrics than the attitude.


Taste Of Sugar – Hmm, Hmm (Subway)
The Belgian new beat act took over the main sample from the previous.


Traxmen – F____n Suckin (Dance Mania)
Paul Johnson in booty action, several years before landing the worldwide smash “Get Get Down”.


Brothers Fuck & Friend – Brother F. (Murdercapital)
The Hague’s padre I-F and mates tackling the theme.

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