Around the year 1990, a group of producers gathered regularly at a space called „Blaues Zimmer“ (Blue Room), located at Bergheimer Strasse, Heidelberg. The Blue Room was the studio of Dirk Mantei aka Dman and David Moufang (Move D) calls it the one of the ‘Keimzellen’ (seeds) for what would happen in regards to the electronic music movement within the Rhein-Main-Area during the following 10 years. The 90s were roaring, with a lot of mid-sized cities located relatively close to each other- Heidelberg, Mannheim, Ludwigshafen, Darmstadt- and Frankfurt was easily reached. Various highly influential clubs and parties happened around that time and Dirk and David had their parts. Between 2011 and 2021, they both found themselves in David’s Studio from time to time, Dirk was living in Mannheim and some sessions resulted in a bunch of yet unreleased tracks that slept on hard drives ever since then.
Itako hails from Strasbourg , France. His music creation speciality is blending an array of consciousness-expanding sounds over slower electro and technoid beats. His debut album “Broken Material” on SonicGroove splashes acid, dashes Body music basslines , and sprinkles Belgian New Beat over a ten song album creating a perfect concoction of sci fiction cyber psychodelia that will you drive you into unexplored dimensions.
Borgo Dora is a multiethnic neighborhood located in the centre of Torino. A perfect example of inclusion between different people from (mainly) the Mediterranean area and home to Porta Palazzo, the largest open-air market in Europe. In 1991, a newly born studio located in the middle of the district guided by Biagio Puma decided to give birth to a dance LP called Teknoafro with the support of local Techno dj Bart Spinelli. The title almost speaks for itself, mixing the Italian “Afro” dj culture and the new Akai samplers with 909-driven Techno rhythms. The result was impressive, giving birth to a quite unique recording that reveals many aspects of the ’90s Italian dance creativity and tapestry. Dualismo Sound comes with a fully remastered selection of 6 tracks taken from the original LP.
Keith Farrugia aka Sound Synthesis’ home base of Malta may not be renowned as electro central, but the consistent stream of superlative releases he’s made there under the name Sound Synthesis have certainly put him on the map. In keeping with the floor-aimed functional nature of his tracks, this eight cut selection is a double 12” rather than an album and indeed, wherever you dip into it you’ll find iron-cast electro manoeuvres destined to keep feet moving. A valuable addition to any electro DJ’s armoury, this set has the right tune for just about every moment you care to mention.
The Aussie master of the dark synth arts is back in full force as Buzz Kull with the third album Fascination. Early days of minimal wave seem far away now that Marc Dwyer has gone full Body Music with new full-length, but there is a thread that binds Buzz Kull hits from the past with these ten new cuts: a thread of darkness proper to the most handsome man in the game and that’s here to stay. Cause this record is not just about music subgenres we all know and love, it’s about a feeling that comes alive only with the dark and drives you through the small hours just to leave you drained and filled at once.
Anthony Rother presents his new electro double album, called AI Space. Experience the world of the digital mind and reflect yourself in this artificial construct to gain new information about the basic fundamentals of our reality.
◼️ ALBUM ONE (Title 1-11) breaks away from the classic Boom-Tschak drum sounds, makes massive use of the AR-Textur-Maschine and examines the field of Techno-Pop.
◼️ ALBUM TWO (Title 12-21) explores a dark disturbing world of the Roland TR-808 Drumcomputer in combination with heavy digital effect processing.
For his debut album Dip Shim digs deep into his past for his most personal release yet, drawing on his childhood in Spain for a genre-bending album of electronics, combining influences from house, techno, electro, downtempo, and ambient to create one of the year’s most essential releases. Dip Shim, who also runs the Bolero record store in Malmo, Sweden, pushes and tweaks those silver boxes to create music with one foot in the past but looking to the future, from the fluid acid house of Dalaplan Jam and Bubble Gate, uptempo electro jams like BDP Fast Life and Tusso Arcade Force, to meditative joints such as One For Regen and Impossible Connection. But although the album is eclectic, these 12 tracks are underpinned by Dip Shim’s unique hardware-led sound, proving he’s an artist with depth and longevity.
U-TRAX presents the debut album of Dutch producer w1b0, who sadly passed away in August.
Wibo Lammerts’ sudden death on August 15th shocked the worldwide electro community, and also left the record label, that had been working on the debut album with the artist known as w1b0 for the past two years, dumbfounded and in grief. Wibo had jokingly always called his upcoming debut album ‘his legacy’, which now sadly has become a painful truth. With the support of Wibo’s family, U-TRAX is now doing the only thing that doesn’t feel totally wrong: proceed as planned, and release ‘When Humans Ruled The Earth’. W1b0 made quite a name for himself with heavy electro tracks that he released on labels like Bass Agenda, Hilltown Disco and Discos Antónicos. Standing at 202 meters, and combined with a cheerful character, most people remember him as the gentle giant of electro. For this album, Wibo wanted to steer away from the dark and heavy electro he mostly made until then. The idea of having a platform to create delicate electronic music in different styles, and make it a showcase of his versatility, was very appealing to him.
Confused Machines welcomes one of the most eclectic artists around, Ian Martin. As an artist he is without genre or style, an open source of creativity. He is the host of SEER Radio on Intergalactic FM and also an amazing DJ, whether it’s experimental or dancefloor madness. Martin has released his music on acclaimed labels such as: Bunker Records , Pinkman, New York Haunted, Bio Rhythm to name a few. His 9 track “Grey Theatre” album for Confused Machines is a deep dive and playful exercise with his synthesizers. An emotional and mysterious listening experience. A portal to his soul. Melancholic at times, it flows like water and lurks from the shadows of reality.
J. Mono twists our sense of time again, coming up with the third installment of his ‘Redate’ series: an elegant selection of uncut tracks, roaming in the fields of electro, acid, IDM and EBM. Redate III in its digital format presents tracks that were written and recorded between 2014 and 2015. As the cassette version, it includes not only Redate III (as side A), but a collection of J. Mono’s various other tracks created between 2017 and 2021, that appeared beforehand on various compilation albums (as side B). In other words, with this fresh new tape you’re all set with 8 years of J. Mono experience.
WRWTFWW Records announce the worldwide reissue of Midori Takada’s solo album from 1999, Tree of Life, available on vinyl for the first time ever in a new audiophile mix by the Japanese percussionist herself, and in full half-speed-mastered glory. Originally recorded in September 1998 at legendary Ginza (Tokyo) studio Onkio Haus and released on CD only for the Japan market in 1999, Tree of Life is Midori Takada’s best kept secret, a lost gem of minimalism and percussive ambient. The album is separated in two parts, the first one finds Takada exploring her trademark environmental soundscapes with precise mastery of marimba, drums, and bells, notably on the magnificent fan-favorite ”Love Song Of Urfa”. The second half is a collaboration with Chinese virtuoso Erhu player Jiang Jian Hua, allowing Midori Takada to unveil new layers of her artistic mind with a slightly more theatrical approach and a beautiful crystallization of complex simplicity.
Morphine Records is coming up with a massive loader from Slumberland’s self-made instruments sounds, from the bullroarer to sewing machines an d self made organs, combined with legendary Tuvan throat singer Sainkho Namtchylak. “Lightkeeper” was recorded and mixed by Lebanese-Canadian artist Radwan Ghazi Moumneh (Jerusalem In My Heart, Constellation Records) adding his distinct touch to the production of this rollercoaster of sounds. Belgian musician, composer and instrument-maker Jochem Baelus has been unleashing his obscure, hypnotic krautrock embellished with distorted exotica upon us as Slumberland since 2013. After creating his signature battery of sewing machines, projectors and dismantled mechanical objects, Baelus immersed himself into the world of 64 year old voice-artist Sainkho Namtchylak and assembled a new sound sculpture inspired by her colour.
Mannequin presents an expanded double-LP of ‘Exploded View’ from minimal synth Dutch pioneers The Actor. Originally released in 1982 by Trumpett Tapes, the album was repressed for the first time by Mannequin Records in 2014, and now is coming back to life again in 2022, enriched by an extra full-lenght of demos from a 1981-1984 period. Singing both in English and German, The Actor songs are often related to modernism, fashion and dancing, like a sort of early incarnation of Depeche Mode but totally devoted to home taping and diy recordings.
Linkwood returns to AOTN in 2022 with Stereo, the follow up and part two, to his killer and hyper focussed LP Mono, which turned heads in 2021. All recorded live at the AOTN studio, he’s kept the essence of the first LP which worked so well, but moved it on in a much deeper direction. Fusing many of his influences, Boogie, Detroit and early 80’s synth joints to name a few, stereo has its own identity and showcases Linkwoods ability to write and produce on the fly but maintain that warm, fuzzy and intricate sound we all love him for.
The elusive SW. returns to Avenue 66 with okALGORYTHM. His third LP for the label is a semi-opaque wandering through the shadowy byways of memory, driven by tough-yet-supple production and his unmistakable, unerringly original voice. Inspired by all night electronic radio shows of the ‘90s, okALGORYTHM pulses with rich imagination and a sense of purposeful meandering. Speaking in cryptic fragments, the artist hints at elusive reminiscences “back then on the autobahn, to Berlin, with friends” while also noting that some recollections are “of things that didn’t happen that way.”
“Moonlight Serenade” was originally released on Axis Records. ear 3036, the Third Empire of Human spans hundreds of star systems, only accessible by a faster-than-light spaceship. No other intelligent beings have ever been encountered, not until a light sail probe enters a human system carrying a dead alien. The probe is traced to the Ursea, an isolated star system in a thick dust cloud, and an expedition is dispatched. After a search that lasted thousands of years, humans stand on the verge of first contact with an alien race. The mission’s objective: learn everything there is to know about the extraterrestrial intelligence.
MANASYt vs Sam Lowry. A clash, mashup and/ or battle between two minds yet one and the same face. Hailing from the twilight zone, Bulgaria. The currently Xiamen, China, based Petar Tassev has joined the forces of his alter ego’s on this 9 tracker. A side 4 celestial and daring Electro tracks followed by the more eerie B side. An experimental, future horror movie-like sound.
Nearly 10 years on since his last solo LP, Berlin techno icon Marcel Dettmann arrives on Dekmantel with an expansive album captured in a flash of inspiration. In many ways Fear Of Programming is a reflection on the artistic process – the critical hurdles one has to overcome, the constant strive for originality, the ability to capture inspiration in its pure moment of inception. Bar the closing title track (and we all know Marcel loves a surprise closing), these 13 tracks came together during a period in which our hirsute host was able to immerse himself in studio practice and set the intention to record an album’s worth of material every single day. From the resulting mass of work there were many options to choose from, and Fear Of Programming stood out as one of the most complete statements on Dettmann’s approach in the here and now.
John Shima has proven himself to be a natural disciple for the kind of emotive techno sound B12 were pioneering in the early 90s, and so it makes sense to see him working closely with Steven Rutter’s FireScope label now. More than meeting a pre-meditated formula, the focus here is on expression through the machines, and Shima is a dab hand at getting his synths and sequences to sing. After 2019’s The Lonely Machine, he’s back with The Empty Lands, an engrossing long player which journeys through enchanting, interwoven synth lines and delicate drum machine patter that will keep you invigorated and inspired for aeons.
”Controlled Impulses” presents Jeroen Search’s first solo debut on KEY Vinyl. Known for his bleepy mind-bending sound signature, the Dutch artist once again proves his mastery in the art of production. With this album, Search exposes his creative versatility by delving into an exquisitely dreamy reality. Rather than a dance floor oriented selection, ”Controlled Impulses” contains a more cinematic, melodic inclination- an ode to the capacity of music to transport the listener to other worldly dimensions.