Los Angeles’ Silent Servant returns to the fold with his first solo offering since his 2018 ”Shadows of Death and Desire” LP for Hospital Productions. Mendez wastes no time on the opener ”Cyber Luminescence” featuring Cabaret Voltaire’s Stephen Mallinder on vocals, with a modern take on classic synthwave displaying a heavier production style, with fluttering kr-55 hi-hats, synthesized snares, and a chaotic punk energy. This is not without melody and catchiness, as Mallinder drives the track full on; masterfully singing about a dystopian future which we very well may be living in at this moment. “Raw Optics” is Silent Servant in true form layering an atmospheric backdrop over driving raw sequences and vicious drum programming. “Solitude Illuminated” is the real centerpiece of the record though, as Mendez goes into a new territory finding a balance between uplifting slow house music and his signature shadowy techno. Where his classic “Lust Abandon” was more Distant Dreams pt. II, “Solitude Illuminated” is more akin to something like Dearborn’s house classic “New Dimension” but taking a fresh production approach on this bassline driven seven minute anthem.
Adam X returns to L.I.E.S. under his slowbeat industrial guise as ADMX-71.Through this nine track 2xLP we get a master class in hi-def bleep infused psychedelic industrial. Made for urban terrain, this is the definition of cyber war gear grinding street techno…head directly for the absolutely tense rhythmic noise track “Catch Me If You Can” and have your head explode. More end of the world anthems from a master on this long player.
Karl O’Connor (Regis) and Simon Shreeve (Kryptic Minds/Osirus Music/Downwards) team up again for a menacing four song EP of broken beat electronics. The perfect amalgamation of O’Connor’s and Shreeve’s solo works merged.. absolutely heavy dubbed out dark Birmingham electronics. Distinct, singular and subtly soul crushing music from masters of an uncategorizable genre.
Blinding double pack of heavily old school influenced bleep, direct from the depths of England by prolific young producer, Tom Carruthers. These are heavily sample based MPC productions that harken to the carefree days when the pills were pure and the music was fresh and never stopped. When house was techno and techno was house, this long player takes the best elements from say Chill Records, early-Warp and the best Nu-Groove creating timeless dance tracks made for the warehouse dj.
Steve Summers delivers his long anticipated debut double LP for L.I.E.S. Stepping up with 13 tracks, Summers goes across the board exploring all ends of the long lineage of Chicago House music. As a member of Mutant Beat Dance with Traxx and Beau Wanzer or under his Rhythm Based Lovers alias Summers has always managed to tread the line between classic Chicago styles and modern psychedelic Jakbeat floor beaters. On the aptly titled “Generation Loss” we get the the full spectrum; from the old school 80s acid of “Who Knows” to the long form lysergic blackhole of “Boxed In” or the dx funk of “Unknown Origin” Summers cements his signature style which he has refined over years throughout this LP.
Two Dogs in a House is Jason Letkiewicz and Ron Morelli. This is a collection of Two Dogs in a House tracks from the archives spanning 2009-2013. Tracks 1-5 previously unreleased, track 6 released on vinyl on Lets Play House Records, track 7 unreleased remix of Black Deer and tracks 8-10 recorded in 2013, released on vinyl in 2015 as Doomsday Initiative II, with blessed permission from Nation.
Cardinal & Nun returns to L.I.E.S. now with his debut LP, 8 songs of full on rotten stripped back, fuzzed out, synth punk mayhem. Straight to the head beautifully thrashing anthems, Cardinal & Nun goes in with catchy basslines, dissonant guitar chop ups, and vocals that creep from the shadows throughout the affair. Don’t gas out though, there are some somber cuts on the b-side’s ”Whats Goin On Tonite?”, ”Pandemonium” and ”Day After Day”. A true gem in the French scene, now get in the pit and slamjack.
Almost two years after the second volume landed in record stores, Oliver Ho AKA Broken English Club has finally delivered the third and final instalment in his White Rats trilogy of albums. In keeping with its predecessors, the album sees Ho exploring a mixture of politically charged ambient compositions, post-apocalyptic electronic soundscapes, mind-altering industrial grooves and gnarled, post-punk influenced workouts. As you’d expect given Ho’s track record, the album sounds authentically dystopian, updating the Cold War era paranoia of early industrial music for a new century. Highlights include the acid-flecked industrial-electro number ‘Alone In The Hunt’, the strobe-lit EBM heaviness of ‘The Kill’, the creepy ambience of ‘The Burned The Villages’ and the clandestine, slow-motion stylishness of ‘Love Cuts Deeper’.
LA’s Benedek delivers a killer old school house LP influenced by 78th Street era Beltram, Latin freestyle dubs and WBMX drum tracks. This is street beat at it’s finest and Benedek executes with precision. Classy and catchy, with a knack for melody yet still grimey as hell and full of beats you can mix. Primetime ”86 mix show material brought to life in the present tense, carrying on with tradition while flipping it upside down.
NYC by way of Miami, Moist 96 is a new project of Rene Nunez, mostly known through the years for his work under the name, Horoscope. Culled together from decaying tapes, bled out and dubbed one too many times over, Nunez took pieces from these 4 track demos drawing back on the music of his youth; Miami bass, freestyle and coked out funk to create this record. The LP being a raw in your face snapshot which is the musical equivalent of a pit bull being locked in a car for hours during a heatwave with the afternoon mix show on full blast.
As the artist says, “This is not trying to be some jokey-ironic-funny-costume-campy bullshit. It is trying to be on some real illegal pre-internet bootleg rush-hour mix; 808’s on blown-out car systems; cassette tapes melted in the center console speeding by Hot Wheels and Club Madonna’s neon signs; pants-shitting bass frequencies, like a roundhouse kick to your chest type shit. If you’re tired of all this cum fast video game techno you might enjoy this project. And if you don’t, that’s cool, too. I hope everyone keeps their head up, Releasing music right now can feel stupid and unimportant, but hopefully this record can take your mind off shit for a second and have some fun. Thanks for taking the time and listening. ”
Manisdron, side project of GOAT (JP) drummer, Takafumi Okada debuts on L.I.E.S. with a four track EP of frenzied live electrified drum/blast synth rip not techno beat experiments. A powerful force both live and in the studio – this is no nonsense gear that truly gets your heart pumping.
From time to time I like to take a brief look at what our readers enjoyed the most and the end of the year is always a good time to do so. In order to do this I compile a top 3 of the most appreciated albums, compilations, mixes our readers liked in the last year.
As a cover for this year’s post I choose a map showing from where our visitors come and the first 10 places are the US, Germany, Romania, UK, Ukraine, The Netherlands, Spain, France, Russia and Italy.
Rotterdamn’s ever prolific DJ Overdose delivers his first full length for L.I.E.S., “Emulator Amour”. The well seasoned electro veteran gives us a 13 track master class workout in the genre, exploring all ends and styles. From the classic cowbell electro of “Razor”, to the West Coast boogie of “Bow to the Devourer” or the icy electro bass of “Turns Out Eddy Has No Friends” Overdose leaves no stone unturned. One of the artists most complete works in his vast catalog which ties all his influences together and presents them in true Overdose form. Not to be missed. A true classic from a Dutch master.
After a long hiatus the elusive LIES-BLK series returns, this time with a wild five tracker sliced and diced by Brasilian dj, Millos Kaiser. As with all LIES-BLK series these are one time pressing promo only affairs for use in the club. Total floor burners.
Trends come and go as we have seen, unlike many, Brooklyn-born Adam X isn’t one to follow trends, but rather set them. Now entering his 30th year of DJing and 25th year running his Sonic Groove label much of the world of dance music has come full circle since Adam started back in 1990. With that said there was no better time to explore his vast back catalog then the present as it’s all the more relevant right now. As many younger contemporary techno djs have taken to the faster, harder, stronger route as of late, this was par for the course back in 1992, where this compilation begins. What we have here is a collection of formative psychedelic acid tracks specifically made for the raves that were happening all over the world at the time. Many of the tracks here had previously appeared on cutting edge labels such as Direct Drive, Drop Bass Network and Magnetic North, who were all spearheading the sound at the time, we also get two unreleased cuts from the vaults, plus a rare collab with Thomas Heckmann. Back then the goal was simple- to push the limits of this fresh sound, and see how far they could actually go with their 303s; this music now filling warehouses and clubs worldwide. The eleven tracks on this record undoubtedly take rave-extremity to new heights whilst keeping the integrity (and brutality) of the music intact and the crowd in a frenzy.
Chicago deknician Traxx delivers an epic 17:00 minute excursion into the world of “proto rhythm” Here we have a blueprint 80s style mastermix which touches upon tracks that may be considered “proto-house” material from a forgotten time when studio experimentation and creativity with the machines were the norm. When producers made music for the djs and the two were all intertwined in the process working hand in hand (we can think about Larry Levan’s “Night Dubbing” album with Imagination as reference”. This 17 minute trip is Traxx’s take on the early sound of New York, some of the records played then and some of the techniques used to “spice up” the records shall we say.
L.I.E.S. Records Various Artists compilation “How Sick Do You Get When You Look At Yourself?” with tracks from 51717, Bad News, Beau Wanzer, Chupacabras, Daniel Holt, December, Delroy Edwards, Entro Senestre, Innsyter, JT Whitfield, Krikor, S. English, Teste, TV.OUT and Willie Burns.
Marcos Cabral returns to L.I.E.S. with a new six track mini LP after a run of cult releases for The Trilogy Tapes as Chemotex. Here we get Cabral in top form falling somewhere in-between his last works for L.I.E.S. and Chemotex tracks. Through the record we get a rough yet refined style moving from metallic gnarled electro to melodic IDM and/or destructive the electronics as heard on “Secret Air”. Our favorite being the introspective closer “Wearing Petrichor”.