Another beauty on Simoncino’s label HotMix, signed by the mighty Luke Hess.
Another beauty on Simoncino’s label HotMix, signed by the mighty Luke Hess.
John Shima with 4 tracks of deep & warm Detroit vibes. He’s in fine form on this surprise outing for Subwax’s Excursions series, effortlessly moving between the emotive, melodic bliss of “Evergreen”, where lilting lead lines spar with dreamy chords and a hybrid electro/deep sci-fi techno groove, the poignant, pitched-down deep electro beauty of “Moodswing”, the deep space breakdowns and tactile chords of “Space Cadet”, and the intergalactic electrofunk haziness of enveloping closing cut “Street Soul”.
Vade Mecum returns with yet another amazing release, bringing forward four fresh tracks signed by Icelandic artists Ohm & Octal Industries. Titled See You At Dawn EP, the 12 is designed with deep and spacious dub techno rhythms, perfect for introspect’.
Indigo is Icelandic artist’s Exos fourth studio album, arriving almost two full decades after his last LP. In the meantime, the seasoned producer has never stopped to refine his production style, mastering an aesthetic that feels at once minimalist and yet richly detailed. Spanning the organic and the electronic, drawing from early dub techno blueprints and comprising the beauty of his austere homeland. From this Exos expands an absorbing atmosphere, sustaining the primal power of nature within compositions that hold an exalted presence yet never go over-board, instead, they gently push along even in their most intense moments thus vastly transcending the pure club context. The albums thirteen tracks are a sonic bliss to indulge in, each element is crafted so meticulously and balanced with care against its counterparts. Whether the luminous, spaciously glowing opening tracks “Reincarnation” or “í Skjoli Naetur ”the then-ensuing hypnotic techno-trips of “Sælureitur” and “Quad arcanum Leticia” and finally the deeply satisfying, dubbed-out backbone of the album’s main body – a series of Exos’ signature-style dub-techno cuts that he has been perfecting now for over 20 years. Seeing it all mesh together in this concentrated form, it’s the picture of an exceptionally experienced producer pushing himself beyond any limits to achieve his greatest feat yet. When the fog clears and the last tracks slowly roll out, the record leaves as smoothly as it had entered, allowing for reflection and contemplation of one of techno’s most exhaustive LP-efforts yet to date.
Deep space electro-techno tracks by Estrato Aurora. He drops this solid 4 track EP on the Spanish NNY label. Magnificent productions ranging from immersive building tracks to fierce electro cuts with touches of ambient and dub.
RØDHÅD has continuously pushed the boundaries of modern techno to new hypnotic and theatrical heights on his Dystopian party-turned-label imprint, where he released his debut Anxious back in 2017. This time, RØDHÅD tunes into a place of reflection and reformation on his most avant-garde project to date: WSNWG – BACK TO ZERO. Intended to provide a space for solo releases, the imprint comes at a crucial turning point, as society circles in on itself during the pandemic. RØDHÅD christens the label with MOOD, his first ambient experimentalist release, comprised of his own solo archival material mostly from 2017/2018, working on a plane of spontaneity, devoid of set structures. The result is a life-giving, intimate and solipsistic work. Awash with field recordings, droning loops and subtle granulations, the sparse soundscapes on the 18- track album are deeply profound and satisfying. Crafting emotive textures through detailed layering of ethereal pads and simple synth melodies on ‘When They Returned After Midnight’ reflects the producer’s meditative sensibilities, whilst more beat-driven tracks such as ‘He Didn’t Seem The Kind of Guy Who Would Just Talk To A Stranger’ and ‘Pigeons Dancing On The Roof’ employ trip-hop beats atop washed synths and textural loops for a more downtempo affair. The album often has the dynamics of a sci-fi film score; the slow-building distortion on ‘A Huge Plume of Ash Rose From a Volcano’ carries a profound weight and substance, whilst the eerie ‘Like Sleepwalkers Ghosting Through A Dream’ breathes as if it had a life of its own.
Delsin’s Mantis series expands its remit with the arrival of Italian duo natural/electronic.system. Already well-established as connoisseurs of deep techno via releases on Tikita and years of DJing at places like Labyrinth festival, Antonio Giova and Valerio Gomez de Ayala present four luxurious sound baths that occupy a space between techno and ambient – always propulsive and rhythmical, but with a huge emphasis on space and harmony.
Nuron, the seminal and elusive producer in the realm of melodic and emotive techno, is back! Almost 25 years after his output on Likemind Records, Nuron finally re-appears on the Belgian De:tuned label with long-awaited new work that sounds every bit unique and fresh as back in the day. “La Source” opens with Nuron’s take on lush Detroit fused techno, a masterclass of mixing belly-fluttering synth arrangements with outstanding drum programming. Turn the record over for two exclusive Nuron remixes of As One (Kirk Degiorgio) tracks from the recent “Communion” album on De:tuned, resembling Artificial Intelligence vibes of the highest order.
New Thinner Groove release including a Hashman Deejay remix for the 5ive track”Planet Be”. The undeniably cosmic and spacey deep house chug, with shimmering synth riffs and bubbly electronics cluster around a sparse, tribal-tinged groove.
Noah Gibson marks his first appearance on Northern Electronics with an EP of plaintive meditations on his innermost causes and conflicts. Acidic enthusiasm spirals out of control in innumerable ways across ‘Press On,’ routing us through the reflective atmosphere that hangs heavy in the background of the thrilling adrenal spikes.
After launching their own De Stijl label last year, Artefakt are back on Delsin with Icarus, a sparkling new four track outing. Known for their intricate sound design and deep yet hard hitting grooves. Always serving up atmospheric music that is artful and filled with rich detail, they continued on their own path once again here. Starting with the smooth and hypnotic, stripped back grooves from Icarus. Followed by the cavernous and immersive ambient trip Ganzfeld Effect. The darker Vapour is still heady and meticulously crafted with deft little details, a rich sound field and supple techno drums getting you in the zone. Delphic then offers crisp breakbeats, dubby drums and electrically charged synths that are physical but emotional. It’s another perfect fusion of light and dark, thoughtful and physical techno from this ever impressive pair.
Rekids offshoot Stranger in The Night welcomes underground mainstay Fred P for a release complete with his signature depth. ‘Turn Up’ is built on immovable kick drums that roll and roll beneath a dark nebula of synths and pads. There is the atmospheric feel of factory floor automation in the groove and it never lets up. The lush ‘Alphabet City’ is less heavy, with more bright and cosmic pads lighting up a track that is airy and filled with a subtle sense of funk. ‘Construction’ takes things late into the night once more, with an edgy lead that is unsettling and paranoid as it pans about over a rooted kick drum that will lock the floor into a state of hypnosis. ‘For The Dome’ closes this fantastically compelling release with jittery, percussive drums that are softened by celestial synth work. In harmony, they make for perfectly escapist listening.
Five years on since their last joint outing in Stroboscopic Artefacts Monad series, Speedy J and Lucy team up again as Zeitgeber on ‘Seventeen Zero Four’, a new three-tracker descending deep into the filthy, tenebrous outskirts of club music.
Spanish DJ and producer Psyk returns to his own NON Series with ‘Opal Lake’. This 40th release on the imprint and also the first release of 2020 is a stellar four track techno pack including a collaboration with fellow Spanish producer Architectural. Opening track ‘Biting Nails’ sees a new studio collaboration between the two Spanish techno legends. It’s a deep and emotive jam showing a surprisingly melodic side of both producers. Title track ‘Opal Lakes’ is the most powerful outing on the EP, fierce and driving rhythms melting into hazy atmospheres. With its crispy snares ‘Bell Tair’ flips the energy with an on-point minimalistic percussion workout where ‘Outline’ and its deep drums acidic riffs drags you below see level into a bright and lively underwater world.
Uzuri welcomes the New Jersey native , Joey Anderson. All of Joey’s usual trademarks are here; acid swirls , melody , cinematic textures – music by a dancer for dancers.
Boris Bunnik aka Conforce returns to Delsin for his fifth album on the label. Across eight tracks he delivers a wide range of styles yet keeps the ethereal and textural aesthetic of his sound recognizable at all points. His atmospheric approach combined with razor sharp percussion and intricately programmed synths make “Dawn Chorus” one of his most adventurous albums to date. Flirting with his Versalife moniker at times, this album leans to his experimental works, strongly optimized for dance floors using his unique sounddesign skills and unstoppable drift to reinvent himself.
Delsin founder Marsel van der Wielen revives his Peel Seamus alias for a debut album proper. The leading Dutch techno label began in 1996 with a cassette-only Peel Seamus release, Publik Draft, which Van der Wielen primarily distributed through early online channels of communication. There was a small flurry of 12″ releases from the project around the turn of the century, but for a long time Peel Seamus has been quiet. Now Van der Wielen has gathered together tracks from his archives, mostly written and recorded circa 2000, to present the Peel Seamus debut album proper, Susurro. Rooted in the classic Detroit and European techno that Delsin’s identity is forged on, it’s a deep, rich listen laden with heart and soul to match the mechanics of Van der Wielen’s chosen tools – a masterclass in expressive electronics and a fascinating insight into the musical DNA behind one of the world’s finest techno labels.
Afrodeutsche’s debut album ‘Break before Make’ comes on Skam label. Her polyrhythmic compositions integrate a wide array of musical genres, including Afrofuturistic electro and techno, classical solo piano and Detroit legacy house; all memorable journeys into deep, abstracted sound.
As Jochem Peteri returns his attention to the jewels buried in his back catalogue, including last year’s reissue of the 154 LP Strike, it’s a relief to know this understated rough diamond is getting the appropriate reissue treatment.