The latest issue of “Internets most controversial underground e-zine” the Shadow Wolf Cyberzine issue#10 is out now on Nightwind Records. A 19 track ‘cover tape’ compilation with various artists. The term ‘cover tape’ stems from when magazines came with a cassette tape full of music or software on the cover back in the 1980s/1990s.
Danny Wolfers dons his Dickie Smabers alias on his return to UTTU for his 7th release on the label – low-slung-house grooves rub shoulders with robotronik-jakbeat over 2 slabs of electronxxx straight outta The Hague.
Danny Wolfers striking another album at the Northsea Institute For The Overmind. This time is coming under the Smackos alias, providing a 11 track album free to download / name your price on his bandcamp.
2020 was a tough year for almost everyone and definitely a year to forget for our scene. Events and gigs canceled, venues closed, artists lacking a way to earn a decent living and club culture facing a threat like never before.
In the midst of these events were several people / organizations who tried to ease the pain, offering out some comfort by releasing music to people for free or by pay as you want download. This was always done, but this year I noticed that more and more artists are doing this.
Here is a selection of albums and compilations I came across this year and that I think is worth mentioning again.
Legowelt’s new EP ‘System Shapeshift’ will be released on Lapsus sub label C.E.E., specializing in more club-oriented sounds. The label returns to action after a two-year hiatus, during which time its intrepid explorers failed twice to scale the dizzy heights of Nanga Parbat. Now back at sea level C.E.E.’s head honchos have confirmed the release of Legowelt’s new five-track EP, bursting at the seams with 30 minutes of unrelenting old-school techno, synth house and snaking electro bathed in pure acid. The EP is a genuine time bomb, ideal for the most discerning of electronic music lovers.
Legowelt has been a key figure in the Dutch electronic music scene since the early nineties, steadily releasing timeless music that merges the pioneering sounds of Detroit and Chicago with idiosyncratic sci-fi fascinations. “Unconditional Contours” captures Legowelt’s stint at the Swiss Museum for Electronic Music Instruments (SMEM), after he was invited to be the first artist in residence at the institution’s “Playroom” project. Legowelt visited SMEM in Fribourg, Switzerland, in early 2019 to explore the collection and record music. Possessing an extensive collection of synthesizers himself, he used hand-picked synthesizers from the museum’s archive: the rare Farfisa Synthorchestra, the EVS-1 Evolution, the “shittiest rompler ever made”, amongst many others. The 10-track album “Unconditional Contours” is both a probe into the vast collection of SMEM, and a display of Legowelt’s well established compositional qualities. Leaving ample space for new sounds to unfold, Legowelt invokes gentle trips, brooding excursions, bleep heavy soundscapes, and reimagined elements of dance music classicism. SMEM and -OUS are launching the “smem+ous” series to document the “Playroom” residencies. A limited edition of this album was already sent out to early supporters of the “Playroom”. Founded in 2016 and based on a collection of more than 5000 synthesizers, organs, drum machines and effects that had been collected over a 35 year period by Klemens Niklaus Trenkle, SMEM offers residencies, studio sessions, talks and workshops.
“When I first saw this collection, I was truly flabbergasted. Endless rows of synthesisers – some so obscure I had not ever seen nor heard of them. This place will probably turn into the world’s most magical place for synths.” – Legowelt
Legowelt with another free offering on his Nightwind Records. Written, performed and produced by Danny Wolfers at the North Sea Institute For the Overmind Scheveningen Holland. Across the ten tracks, you will find shades of house, electro, techno and Italo but what most notably ties them all together is Legowelt’s signature use of distortion. The album is dripping in Lo-Fi tactics and features plenty of vocal work throughout.
“Folk Triumfator”is the second album by Zandvoort & Uilenbal, a ‘paramusical academic’ project of medieval music expert Jimi Hellinga and electronic musician Danny Wolfers. As Zandvoort & Uilenbal they appropriate historical instruments such as a 19th century Victorian harmonium, a medieval hurdy gurdy, an electro acoustic thumb harp and an mid 20th century German Mixtur Trautonium. These are cross bred with the usual arsenal of contemporary electronic instruments and seasoned with some sinister poetry in their North Sea coast temple of sensory sonic delights. We can write how conceptual and arty this all is but let’s just say this is hardcore dark ambient with lots of medieval drone space jazz influences to trip your mind out into a region where time and your opinions cease to exist.
Recorded at the North Sea Institute for the Overmind in Scheveningen Holland.
“Yesterday I released a free/pay-what-you-want album on Bandcamp called TIPS FOR LIFE to hopefully brighten your days up a bit. Its Nightwind Records NW023 and its got 12 tracks on it ranging from Slowjam Memphis Rapbeats to Poldertechno and everything in between” – Legowelt
The ever prolific Legowelt AKA Dutch electronic musician Danny Wolfers is back with another album, “Secrets After Dreams”. The enchanting LP is released by his long time acquaintance Mystic & Quantum records, the first one of a new series called SpellWeaver. 7 ethereal compositions gleaming with poetic synthesis. Artwork by Danny Wolfers himself.
Nightwind records is Legowelt’s own recordlabel releasing cassettes, cd’s, digital, graphic novels, zines and vinyl LP’s since 2014. A spiritual – but more advanced and freaked out – successor to the defunct Strange Life records that ran from 2004 to 2010. The music on this tape was recorded on 21 October 2017 during a live soundtrack performance for Werner Herzog’s 1972 Fata Morgana film at the LAB111 cinema in Amsterdam. A few months later the tracks were cut loose, edited and put on tape. With the visual content vanished from sight only a few fragmentary voiceovers remain that remind us of the movie. Rearranged as hypnotic samples they give the listener some sparse poetical guidance in the metaphysicial porridge that is this cassettetape.
Resurrected from the dark underworld after years of domancy, L.I.E.S. announce a new seven track LP from one of the most cult alias’s in Legowelt’s extensive catalog, Gladio. Back to basics jackin house and electro cuts direct from the depths of the Hague dungeon. ‘Means to Freedom’ is a return to the classic Legowelt sound, taking the roots of old school Chicago and Detroit and running it through the smacked out vision of Gladio’s machine world. Absolutely unmissable jacking, soaring, and stomping jams for that the modern floor has been missing.
Travelling from star to star, from galaxy to galaxy, visiting any planet, moon, or asteroid with the ability to explore the alien landscapes. Legowelt’s ‘Star Simulator’ alters the perception of space time and give you the ability to observe a nearby exoplanet or a faraway celestial phenomenon.
This Animistic Beliefs & Legowelt collaboration tape started out as a scene in Anna Bogomolova’& Dammes Kieft’s upcoming full length ‘Stroboscopes & Smokemachines’ documentary – a film in which they research the Dutch West Coast electronic music landscape. The scene however soon morphed into its own mini film – documenting the entire process on how this tape was conceived. Packed with Animistic Beliefs & Twilight Moose style electro, amateur space jazz ambient with a touch of G-funk and a very intense trip-infused hypnotic techno track. Written and produced by Linh Luu, Marvin Lalihatu and Danny Wolfers at the North Sea Institute For The Overmind.
Dusty grooves from the dunes of Scheveningen. Inspired by myth, legend and scifi; Legowelt conjures up four ancient mysticism and space odyssey themed tracks that will take you on another journey through psychedelic space and paranormal rituals.
Loch Ness was originally composed as a soundtrack for a – never finished – 2012 Commodore 64 Loch Ness ‘Spotter Simulator’ videogame. An adventure / simulator / RPG in which the player takes the role of a cryptozoologist trying to proof the existence of the Loch Ness Monster. The sounds on this soundtrack come from the mighty Commodore 64 itself. This computer, released in 1982, came with a state of the art soundchip – the MOS technologies SID. Far ahead of its competition it sported advanced functions like waveforms with Pulse Width Modulation, envelope generators and a filter. With this chip the commodore 64 had a real 3 voice synthesizer build in – lightyears removed from the spartan primitive unmusical blips and beeps of the Ataris or Apple II’s. The cassette version of the Loch Ness videogame remastered soundtrack comes with new artwork and extra unreleased tracks.
Digital re-issue coinciding with the tape release of this 2007 Strange Life CDR DX7 drenched cult spywave album. Very much influenced by real locations in the vicinity of the The Hague dune studio where this was recorded – this imaginary soundtrack scores a hypothetical story of a Cold War animal parapsychologist living in an abandoned zoo.