Over several landmark EP’s London Modular Alliance have established themselves as the premiere Electro act in modern electronica. Their distinctive blend of classic Electro and state-of-the-art modular synth techniques combine to create an innovative hybrid style all of their own. Applied Rhythmic Technology presents the long-awaited debut album from this unique talent. Presenting for the first time their vision of modern electronica over a double slice of vinyl, LMA stretch out to encompass not only their trademark bone-rattling dark electro rhythms but also haunting ambient interludes and sublime IDM.
Romanian two-piece Karpov not Kasparov have dropped their new EP ‘Memory’ on Disco Halal. A five-track release opens with the sunkissed, synth-driven vibes of ‘Except For Bears’, ensuring the EP commences with some cosmic disco energy. Next up is the hypnotic, computerised sounds of ‘Fool’s Mate’ and otherworldly synth oddity ‘Les Pions Sont l’Âme du Jeu’, before the title track and recent single ‘Memory’ sees the Bucharest duo delve into psychedelia-laced outsider pop territories. Things are then closed out with an instrumental of the same track.
Valeriu Borcoș and Eduard Gabia aka Karpov not Kasparov describe what they do as ‘a musical game of chess between synthesizer and drums’. The Romanian duo also incorporate an analogue visual artist and contemporary dancers into their live performances, resulting in a theatrical show and a kind of real-time soundtrack to the action around them.
Improvisation on Four Sequences was performed live in quadraphonic sound on the Buchla 200e and the Animoog at Festival Antigel in Geneva, Switzerland on January 25th, 2020. This record is specially encoded to be played back in quadraphonic sound and is also stereo compatible. This is the first release in 25 years on Suzanne Ciani’s Atmospheric label, which focuses on her live electronic music.
Welcome to Nicolini’s wonderful world of surprise – Penni’s Palace. Here you will find zebra-chairs and matchbox countachs, colourful tv-screens and Penni the cat presiding over proceedings. You will also find Nicolini, hunched over his MPC or Casio keyboards, sweeping the EQs to make the sounds move, jamming out his songs in heavy microdoses. They are the sounds of machines and the city – Amsterdam centre to be precise – brought to life with volts of electricity. These songs started out as a live show on the terrace of Garage Noord nightclub, and over the following months Nicolini tweaked and re-recorded them into the collection of tracks you have before you. Bristling with energy, these live jams have a loose, almost mystical feeling – you never know quite what’s around the corner. Sounds jump out of the speakers at you, from car engines to reverb crashes. Opposites face off against each other – the mechanical meets the organic, and the cold emptiness of the city contrasts with the warm timbres of tropical climes.
Imagine Andrew Weatherall producing Pere Ubu. The 7” Taki Chrome / Strummer Maxxx single by Pink Skull released on Höga Nord Rekords give a hint of how such a collaboration would sound. Mid seventies kraut rock á la “Neu 75” meet leftfield and sophisticated punk. The record has an organic warmth to it yet the excessive use of electronics: most instruments on the tracks are synthesizers and drum machines – all Moog, Korg and whatnot. In the warmth of the Pink Skull-sound you suddenly get a wash of cold, hard rain from all directions. These elements of surprise create edges in the round soundscape and brings chaos to the mix. This is of course all part of Julian Grefes (founder of Pink Skull) plan. Pink Skull propels you out of the quarantine like a shiny metal free bird released from its rusty cage.
Amateur Dramatics is Awkward Corners AKA Chris Menist’s second LP in the space of a year. In 2020 – a time when the global pandemic gave artists more time and space to think about their music – Chris took his collaborations and compositions to a different level. Having already collaborated remotely with Sarathy Korwar, as well as Kitty Whitelaw through Karthik from Flamingods’ Isolate/Create/Collaborate community, Chris turned his thoughts towards a new project. Amateur Dramatics is influenced by the events of early 2021 and alludes to the general atmosphere of political life in the UK right now where we are chivvied along by people who seem woefully unqualified to be commanding authority. Musically, the LP builds on foundations of the meditative, devotional electronic aspects of previous LP Dislocation Songs but this time frames it more in a jazz context with significant collaborations with Collocutor and Maisha’s Tamar Osborn on four tracks.Vocals (from Kitty Whitelaw) feature on an Awkward Corners track for the first time, as well as double bass provided by David Leahy.The result is a thoughtful and deep listening 40 minute listening experience.
Ilian Tape presents the debut of MPU101. Poetic hovering synth tinkerer on 180g heavyweight vinyl out of the heart of Bavaria.
Aural Medium has handpicked six tracks for this special new release which spans the last decade. As such, Transitional Being shows off another side to the production palette of XVARR. These are tracks that are steeped in ritualistic dance heritage but also enslaved to technology. They are often built around taught drum patterns and sequenced basslines, with twinkling synths up top and more than a slight trace of comic energy in the mould of Weatherall or Baldelli. Tracks lure you into a state of trance and on the more club orientated tracks presented here there is nowhere you would rather be.
8 years after his last visit to Full Pupp, DJ Sotofett returns, accompanied by Rex Ronny, to embodies a solid 7 track EP with a strong Sci-Fi pallet of Cosmic-Italo racers. “Epidermis” is not another conjectural Nu-Disco record but a strong Disco-Dub infused travel in rhythm and melody. The entirety of the EP is bound together by four Galactic synth tracks and three driving Disco cuts, all with an individual approach. It’s a solid nod to the excellence producers of Italian Disco and UK left-of-center dance music has taught us since the late 70’s.
Psycho Banda is the eighth release of Rue du Nord, a Lausanne-based ensemble active since the year 2000. Navigating between psychedelic rock, progressive free fanfare and trippy, repetitive electronic music, the piece extends over 30 minutes, focusing on the ensemble’s obsessive riffs and collective energy.
Ebi was a pseudonym used by Susumu Yokota who was a Japanese techno and ambient composer, producer and house music DJ. Transmigration presents now a one double LP of 2 previously re-issued EPs by the Japanese artist. This is Susumu Yokota’s vision of techno – house, lovingly collected in collaboration with Space Teddy and the Yokota family.
Assortment of 3 trippy chugger downtempo would-be-cosmic-hole anthems beautifully produced by Parisian scene Don Yousef Debbihi. Coming in through the clutch for this summers’ hopeful re-openings with Rec23 – what could have been the soundtrack to a new Akira sequel. Following with a never ending tribal K-hole trip. Ending with a beautiful atmospheric excursion on the B side, perfect for cleansing and setting up a dancefloor.
What better way to celebrate 100 releases than with a handmade box containing soul expanding music!? Höga Nord Rekords have reached an important goal and releases a rare box set containing all 12” from the HNRUK-series plus a new record from Birds, unique for this box. Except Birds, this compilation includes Dark Strands, High Boys, Vox Low, Timothy J. Fairplay, Fontän, Bird Of Paradise, Mythologen, Jamie Paton and Frak. This exclusive handmade box made in Norrmalms kartongfabrik in Stockholm, is a celebration to the Scandinavian Bronze age. You’ll find rock carvings like those on the artwork scattered over the land but mostly near Gothenburg, home of Höga Nord Rekords on the Swedish west coast. Archaeological evidence proves similarities in ornaments and pictures between the Nordic and European Bronze age, just like you find common features in the music released on our label. Though the acts in this compilation box come from all over Europe and beyond, they stem from an obscured and mysterious common source of escapism, purity and creativity.
Shifted offers the latest distillation of his trademark sound. Guy Brewer’s fourth studio album and the first to arrive on his own Avian imprint, “Constant Blue Light”, explores new avenues in caustic minimalism. Eschewing the booming effervescence of his own more plosive dance floor material – Shifted takes a no less nuanced, but decidedly more introspective angle on this new LP. At the centre of Brewer’s practice as an artist, there has always been a sense of dedication to the refinement of a singular idea. In some ways “Constant Blue Light” represents a move closer to the apex of this approach. A continued exploration from a focused and diligent artist that provides yet another fully formed and beautifully articulated component to his own discography and that of the Avian label.
Compilation of all new productions from a wealth of international talent, put together by Knekelhuis.
Label Text “This is a story of friendship, about how it grows stronger through the years. But it’s just as much about fledgling togetherness and shared art in times of crisis. The result is an introspective document of contemporary music, in spirit of Eno and Hassell. A space where we embrace our differences and speak the language of collectivity together, where we reflect, adapt and value each artist’s contribution equally. To witness a multitude of cultural backgrounds that speak one like-minded language. Soothing and illuminating. And felt like…”
The LP contains original compositions by Ryuichi Sakamoto, Pascal Comelade, Laurie Spiegel, Lyra Pramuk, Chassol, Nicolas Godin and Pierre Rousseau, Pedro Vian and Pierre Bastien, Visible Cloaks, Kelman Duran, Raul Refree, Lucrecia Dalt, Lafawndah. ‘PRSNT’ is a unique global artistic project combining the input of artists across the worlds of music, video and written word which acts as a statement on how we, as consumers, engage with music in the 21 st century. The concept was devised by Created By Us and the Barcelona-based label Modern Obscure Music. They read a study which identified that the overwhelming volume of instantly accessible information online is shortening attention spans and altering how audiences engage with music digitally. Their curiosity about the state of online consumption developed further on discovering that around a third of all listeners using digital platforms skip to the next track, within the first 30 seconds of playing. Each musician was given a fascinating challenge to create engaging compositions with real artistic merit, inside the confines of this shortened span. Akin to Brian Eno’s famous Windows 95 start-up music, the time constraints are crucial, and the compositions are deceptively complex and more substantial than expectations of their nano nature would suggest. ‘PRSNT’ acts as a critique of flighty feed culture, but is simultaneously constructive, providing something which is either proposed solution or “if you can’t beat ‘em join ‘em” resignation. Every artist has interpreted the brief differently, resulting in an intriguing blueprint for the potential future of digital music. Could abbreviated micro compositions satisfy, inspire and nourish like their longer counterparts? They certainly take up much less of listeners’ busy lives, which are often spent tackling ever-increasing workloads.
In the beginning, there was just a box of tapes and “Fate’s Gentle Hand.” It was the autumn of 2010, and an anonymous figure known only as the Head Technician, an employee of Pye Corner Audio Transcription Services (“Magnetically aligning ferrous particles since 1970”), found himself at an auction in the village of Coldred, pop. 110. He was on the hunt for tobacco pipes when he chanced across a trio of boxes listed in the auction catalog, which described their contents only as “archived magnetic recordings.” The sole bidder, he won the lot, and upon receipt of his purchase took possession of an unspecified number of mouldering cassettes and ¼” reel-to-reel tapes. The collection contained no identifying information save for a single phrase scrawled on each box: “Black Mill Sessions.” And so, armed with razors, eyedroppers, and a bevy of solid-state circuitry, the Head Technician sat down at his machines and got to work. Now, Lapsus presents Black Mill Tapes Volume 5: The Lost Tapes. The musical landscape has changed considerably in the past decade, but what is remarkable about the Black Mills Tapes material is that it hasn’t aged a day; its retro-futurist transmissions sound just as mysteriously compelling as they did the first time around. While they purport to faithfully transcribe the sound of yesterday’s technology, they end up being something more: a record of what we wish the past sounded like—a rickety tape transfer of desire itself, spooled and boxed, just awaiting discovery.