REVIEW: D.J. Trump – Trumpin’ Tracks Vol. 1 (Black Beacon Sound bbs009ep – 2017)

It was only a matter of time when Trump ‘The DJ’ will make a techno debut and truly some Soundcloud clips appeared a few months ago. It sounded pretty promising, clearly not a kind of cheap parody house that would ride the wave of Trump-mocking. And I really don’t care if it’s D.J. Trump or DJ Woody Woodpecker because the tracks are just great, starting from “Ghetto Trump”, which has a lot in common with bleepy minimalism of “Losing Control”. In the gripping ghetto jam “Trump Dat”,(un)appropriate vocabulary emerges from a coarse throat, before smoking acid house tune “Beat The Box, Trump […]

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REVIEW: AshTreJinkins – Root Beer EP (NCA004 – 2017) 

AshTreJinkins, an artist straight outta Compton, L.A., has already three EPs under his belt in 2017. The release on NCA opens with a Rezzett-esque furred deep house “Dead Or Wounded” and the mood is preserved in offbeat funky swing “Frozen”, which is introduced by vintage audio clip about ‘good slave material’ from the times when cotton and tobacco markets started to bloom. For me, the culmination of “Root Beer” arrives on the flip with “We Need Rain”, a pulsating, dubbed out masterpiece with simmering voices, that creates otherworldly vibes before floor monster “Adwarenigga” is grinding out the artist’s rougher side, […]

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REVIEW: Vesa-Matti Kivioja / Kollektiv Jurmo – Connection EP (Meltdown Deejays Recordings MLTDWN-002 – 2017)

As a DJ collective, Meltdown has been around since 1993 when it was set up in the Finnish town Vaasa. Last year saw the Meltdown’s debut as a label with Vesa-Matti Kivioja’s (Ostrobothnia Power Discs, Ljudverket) “Miller Street Sessions”, a five-track EP between acidic floor action and experimental soundscapes. In the second Meltdown release, the opener “I Will Stand By You Until We Do” is an admirable piece by Kivioja, exhibiting techno’s brighter side with warm chords and driving acid house bassline. Still enjoying the heat of sunrays, “Expanded Harmony” is of more propulsive kind and then Kivioja passes the […]

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REVIEW: Harmonious Thelonious – Ayranman EP (Disk disk12 – 2017)

In 2017, Stefan Schwander has returned to the limelight with his Harmonious Thelonious project, when new releases have appeared on Kontra-Musik, Versatile and most recently on The Trilogy Tapes. “Ayranman EP” was published already in the summer and it marks the artist’s return to the Düsseldorf label Disk, formerly known as Diskant. For Schwander, who has worked under Antonelli Electr. and Rhythm Maker monikers, it’s home turf because Diskant was set up by him and two artist friends, Marc Matter and Florian Meyer, who all together are performing as The Durian Brothers. Subtropical rhythmic noise has been the label’s signature […]

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REVIEW: Conan_ – Untitled (Lunar Disko Records LDRX6 – 2017)

Until lately I didn’t have a clue about the Irish label Xerophkz and its founder Conan O’Donnell. Exactly up to the moment I discovered his latest EP with bold references to the 313 area, in a record that genuinely deserves attention of Detroit heads. A new offering from the Dublin resident comes on the fellow Irish imprint Lunar Disko, his second appearance on the label after a recent sampler. In the solo debut Conan_  believes in variations when all three tracks at merry 140 BPM have its own nature. The hectic opener “Approaching The Infinity Pool” tries with a colourful mosaic […]

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DETROIT REISSUES: Keith Tucker, Blake Baxter, Model 500 & 3MB

Keith Tucker – Detroit Saved My Soul (Mint Condition MC013 – 2017) In a three-tracker that originally appeared on the Glasgow label Seventh Sign Recordings in 2005, Keith Tucker of Aux 88 and Optic Nerve fame opens with a solid techno narrative “It’s A Mood (Detroit Saved My Soul)” that has anthem features like The Vision’s soon-to-be reissued Metroplex classic “Spectral Nomad”. The B-side is a showcase of Tucker’s extraordinary electro skills with stripped sci-fi floaters “Elektronik” and “My Mental State”, the vocals in the latter recalling the classic “My A.U.X. Mind”. Weary sound quality that can be felt also […]

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Ten Harthouse tracks: Many faces of a ground-breaking label

Revivals are happening all the time and it’s difficult to say when one ends and another begins. However in 2017, there are some signs of trance factor making a return to the floor. Thus it’s time to recall the glory days of Harthouse, a Frankfurt label founded in 1992 by Heinz Roth, Sven Väth and Matthias Hoffmann, that essentially shaped ‘hard trance’ movement but explored other directions too. It’s difficult to remain limited to only ten tracks because in addition to the artists mentioned below, Metal Masters, Resistance D, Braincell, Jiri Ceiver and others had their highlights too. Today a […]

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Detroit’s Direct Beat returns with techno bass classics

[Update on December 17, 2017 – see the end of the post] After a wider audience has (re)discovered Drexciya through reissues on Clone, it’s time to pay attention to other notable moments of the nineties Detroit electro. Direct Beat makes a much-anticipated return in 2018 when the techno bass label from Detroit is going to reissue cult electro tracks along with unreleased material. Set up as an offshoot of 430 West, Direct Beat and the acts like Aux 88, DJ Di’jital, Posatronix, Optic Nerve wrote a splendid chapter in electro’s development. Direct Beat stood for freight train electro, often oily […]

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NEW ELECTRO: Nachtzug, Obergman, Sync 24/Privacy/DeFeKT

  Nachtzug – Unspoken (Vortex Traks VTX 005 – 2017) Nachtzug’s five interpretations on the theme “Unspoken” are in line with the blueprint sound of Vortex Traks, when the German duo offers lulling midsummer electro with melodic pads and smooth synth sequences. “Unspoken 3” sounds so eighties, inviting to a sunset drink on Jan Hammer’s porch. Worth a mention is Nachtzug’s not as tranquil solo debut “XP Lore” on Possblthings, a label from Leipzig which is affliated with the recordshop of the same name. My favourites are acidic crawler “Transmit” and dub induced “Artificial Flavor”. Points: 7 of 10 Obergman – Quantum Eraser (Brokntoys BT08 […]

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REVIEW: K.O.T. (Kings of Thoughts) – Da Jit EP (Black Bottom Records BBR-313 – 2017)

As everyone would guess, Detroit’s electro and bass label Black Bottom Records got its name from the area located on the city’s east side that was named Black Bottom by French settlers because of its fertile and dark soil. For the label, the ground has not been too fertile because it has issued only two, though extremely sought-after records by the group called K.O.T. Now it’s reissue time when “Da Jit EP” is compiling K.O.T.’s tracks from the EPs, written by Messrs McCoy, Harris and Bryant with a notable addition of Shakir, Anthony ‘Shake’ who has been credited as the […]

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