REVIEW: Various – Inversions 001 (INV001 – 2016)

For a moment, the world goes upside down in the first, various artists release from Inversions which is Power Vacuum’s new sublabel. What is expected to be another night out in the company of synthetic beat worshippers turns to a vintage-minded party to trigger enthusiastic exclamations from mature audiences and their sympathisers in music. And good so. Everything seems under the control during the first half of Cavern Of Anti-Matter’s “Bring The Hiss (Version)”. Although it’s not quite the parent label’s standard fare – such as acidic squeeze by EDMX or rowdy electro by Cylob – the track still opens as a retro techno hardware slammer from the 1990s […]

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Nikolajev – Nikolajev (Collect Call CC 003 – 2016)

Nikolajev, Robert. Despite of young age, he has become a reputed DJ in the Estonian underground and co-runs Lekker, a vivacious nightspot in Tallinn. A special mention deserves the fact that he has been part of the techno act Neue Einsicht that warmed up Ancient Methods at Kõue Heli Festival in 2013. After listening to Nikolajev’s debut on the Canadian imprint Collect Call, I’m not wondering why it became a Soundcloud success with about 12,000 plays, because not many new artists in 2016 can match Nikolajev’s premiere – and I’m not saying it because of being an Estonian. The A-side contains two robust, bass-heavy cuts, […]

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SHXCXCHCXSH – SsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSs (Avian ‎AVNLP003 – 2016)

Sssssnake chhharmers from Sweden, not only linguistically challenging dark knights from SHXCXCHCXSH who boast over 6,300 followers of their empty Soundcloud account, believe in the power of ‘s’ in the new album for UK label Avian. After initial rush to vitriolic roughness, when only to recall earlier catalogue entries by Shifted and MPIA3’s, Avian’s tastes have become more varied (Litüus, for example) and SHXCXCHCXSH’s album belongs rather to the experimental section. Instead of targeting sweaty techno caves with their previous Avian LP “Strgths”, SHXCXCHCXSH emits steamy, pixelated sound that constitutes the basis of most of the compositions. Consciously or not, many parts sound very familiar: one of the album’s best tracks, “Ssss” at […]

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Shitcluster – Meat Thief (Panzerkreuz 1027 – 2016)

The Hague’s loonies operating under the name Shitcluster have staged another freakshow of rhythmic noise, to disrupt ‘dance music’ as such. New distorted deviations by Charlie Watkins and Jan Duivenvoorden – the latter running nowadays the Unit Moebius Anonymous –  begin with two ramming tracks on the A-side that remind of Ancient Methods’ “The Whip” from 2009. The gruelling chug of A1 is led by hollow, bouncy drums and subtle complaints like coming from Sid Vicious’s taped mouth, followed by asphyxial feel of A2. The B-side opens with rubbery stabs and eerie clonks that are guided by rotating turbines like engineered by Vainio Väisänen Vega and giving the sensations […]

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David Morley – The Origin Of Storms (De:tuned ASGDE010 – 2016)

De:tuned is keen to put acclaimed artists from the past to contemporary context, either by reissuing old or presenting new productions. The LA Synthesis double pack was one of the 2015 highlights and after B12’s “Transient Life”, it’s the turn of the UK-born Belgian resident David Morley who debuted back in 1992 with “Evolution” on R&S Records’ ambient offshoot Apollo and was active in the nineties with a handful EPs. With “The Origin Of Storms” the Belgian label resumes the pursuit for abundant textures in electronic music, when Morley’s beatless synth variations are floating over ambient fields in the 12″+10″ album over 40 minutes of playtime. The […]

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DJ Spider & Phil Moffa – Madison Square Dungeon (Plan B Recordings PBR045 – 2016)

Established in 2008, Plan B Records is a true New York City powerhouse run by DJ Spider and Lola aka Dakini9 who have supplied many of the label’s releases. In the same, they have hosted a number of techno and (deep) house producers, if to recall only Amir Alexander who dropped wonderful deep house EP “Sonic Subversion” last year. DJ Spider, whose sound can be described ‘dirty’, spelled with admiration, has a penchant for collabs, either with Marshallito, Hakim Murphy or Franklin Da Costa, to name just a few, and for the catalogue number PBR045 the label frontman rejoins forces with NYC-based electronic musician Phil Moffa. […]

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CSA, Lucindo – Compact Cassette 1 (3TH Records 3THCC01 – 2016)

Noisy synth and drone spillage from Berlin’s famed and feared 3TH Records that launch a cassette series with a release split between the ‘newcomer’ CSA (aka Ascion) and Lucindo. The A-side’s most intense moments come with CSA’s kick drum rush “eXeNTeSICUL” and dissonant mad man’s therapy “Devid S. Mystic Shower”, the rest being lost in the dark ambient maze. On the B-side, Lucindo is driven by caveman instincts and opens with crusty bassline in “Neandershöhle”. For tearing up the floor, full-ahead fare “Club” is included, but there’s also strong appeal in short synth bursts “Undercave” and “Prehistoric Ritual”, before the termination arrives with “Savage Burial”. Points: 7 of […]

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Peder Mannerfelt – Controlling Body (Peder Mannerfelt PMLP002 – 2016)

No need to seek professional treatment when hearing voices in your head during the listening session of “Controlling Body”, because it’s part of the experience devised by Peder Mannerfelt for his mind-and-body-testing album. Processed human exclamations are the centrepiece in many compositions – Mannerfelt’s approach is one of a composer, not just producer – and the vocals, coming from Ms Cameron Mesirow aka Glasser are surrounded by a broad spectrum of sound variations. About half of the album is based on vocal-and-bass experiments that stand for the demanding side of the electronic music. It’s worth mentioning that hardly any of the tracks goes the predictable way, as […]

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Klankman – Illumination Through Feedback Distortion EP (Details Sound DTLSND007 – 2016)

Klankman’s opening statement appeared in 2014 when Maarten Epskamp joined the ranks of The Hague’s legendary label Bunker. After the debut and the following EP on Tar Hallow, Klankman moves ahead on the road to the heart of rough acid scene, with a release on the Milan label Details Sound, run and founded by Giuseppe Magistro and Matteo Fabbri. The three-tracker “Illumination Through Feedback Distortion” is another trespassing to the lands of machine-driven mutations, whereas the title track could by easily filed under ‘experimental noise’. It challenges the perception of Klankman serving primarily the floor, because sunken in distortion and dissonances, the track sounds off-sync […]

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Ten train tracks

The following playlist could be extended by Moroder’s “Midnight Express”, The Farm’s “Groovy Train”, Kadoc’s “The Nighttrain” or even Soul Asylum’s “Runaway Train”, but this is my selection of ten train-themed tracks, spanning from experimental sounds to italo disco. What I noticed is that mid-1990s new generation Chicago producers were pretty obsessed about railway themes and they are represented with a couple of tracks (thought about adding BMC’s “Loco Motion” too). Feel free to add your suggestions to the comments below. Chris Watson – El Divisadero (The Telegraph) (Touch) After a CD album with field recordings made in Mexico, Cabaret Voltaire’s founding member Watson issued […]

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