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.
Russian no wave / synth duo The Bleak Engineers seem a neat fit with the first 12″ release from Rotation Mecanique. It’s the new statement of the band, whose members are worth of attention: the grey eminence of the Russian electronic scene Alexander Moralez (Brokntoys/Gigolo/MSQ) and the horror and surf rock goddess Svetlana Zombierella (Messer Chups). The main track, “Unconscious”, is accompanied by 5 more new musical revelations: the fresh compositions, which will be the new hits and the mysterious instrumentals in their trademark gloomy electronic no wave sound. The isolation is not the reason to be silent. Hearing the bleak, sometimes hopeless and sometimes hopeful vertigo of synths, vintage drum machines, floating bass lines, frank and mild vocals without any rush and without any attachment to time and place. And that is the incomplete list of adjectives related to this release.
Absolute Body Control is back with new material after more than ten years. The legendary minimal-synth-wave duo formed in 1980 by Dirk Ivens (The Klinik, Dive, Sonar) and joined a bit later by Eric van Wonterghem (Insekt, Monolith) has been working together again and got finished a new EP. Six songs that fuse their classic sound with a theme that reflects the times of change that humanity is going through.
Dark Entries reunites with longtime idols Xymox, also known as Clan of Xymox, to reissue their Peel Sessions. Xymox was founded in Nijmegen, Netherlands in 1983 by Ronny Moorings and Anka Wolbert, who were joined shortly by Frank Weyzig and Pieter Nooten. Melding the synthesizer-driven experiments of post-punk and New Wave with the doom-laden atmospherics of the burgeoning goth rock scene, Xymox were one of the key progenitors of dark wave. The success of their 1983 debut EP, Subsequent Pleasures (reissued by Dark Entries in 2014) paved the way for a string of epochal releases on 4AD, where they honed their lush, despairing sound. Following their 1985 debut LP, Clan of Xymox, DJ and tastemaker John Peel invited them to BBC studios to record for his Radio 1 show. These recordings were released in 2001 via the Strange Fruit label on CD and are now available here for the first time on vinyl.
Since the early 1980s the Eureka, California based duo Psyclones freak out in music. As one of the most long-standing DIY duos, Brian Ladd and Julie Frith created a body of work, that flirts with Ambient, experimental industrial sounds, New Wave, Post-Punk, Synth-Pop, and all that electric jazz. Besides a few hard-to-find vinyl releases, they published their music regularly via cassette tapes on labels like their own imprint Ladd-Frith or other famed 1980’s underground tape labels like Cause And Effect from Indianapolis, legendary San Francisco based Subterranean Records, Sound of Pig from New York, Insane Music from Belgium or the Spanish label Auxilio De Cientos to name but a few. Now, Notte Brigante is dropping “Tape Music 1980 – 1984”, a detailed compiled sampler on Psyclones early output, that was scattered over diverse tape releases. A nine tracks long trip into the work of a highly underrated band, that never lost their drive to explore new avenues in sound.
Minimal Wave present the reissue of a rare self-released record by Plugpoint Music called ‘Last Chance’. Plugpoint Music was the minimal synth project of Reiner Ossmann, who recorded the 12 songs on this album in his home studio in Germany in 1987 and released them as an edition of 200 copies. This gem of a record was never properly distributed and so essentially disappeared until it began circulating amongst various collectors during the last 15 years. It’s a true minimal synth classic in all of its eccentricity and lack of self-consciousness.
Zona Utopica Garantita (abbr. ZUG) is a 2019 musical project born from the join of Frasco (Bloodygrave & Die Lust, SPO) and Jules (Cronaca e Preghiera, Nono) forming a Punk Electronic collective, that springs a vital live playing over electronic sequences. The joining of Danilo Fatur (CCCP – Fedeli alla Linea) with his charisma, experience and poetry and Misha on synthesizers stabilize the band with a solid musical estethic, direct and radical. ZUG’s music is a marriage between the machine-gunned punk of CCCP and the Body Music of the teutonic DAF, with his own poetry and experimental attitude.
Traxx(Nation) created a 6-hour selection dedicated to Danny’s in Chicago where he held his monthly party Passage. Curated and programmed musically by Traxx, transporting us to a full night of music from 9-pm til 2am. Passage focuses on the new wave/new beat era with a personal collection of music fashioned to alleviate your senses discovering different outtakes and unknown songs. It’s a lengthy journey that hopefully people will enjoy…
Rubber brings it back to home ground by diving deeper into Jan Duivenvoorden’s shoeboxes. Back in 1987, at a local youth centre in the ever-dull Zoetermeer, a group of seven non-musical friends started what could be considered a freeform band performing ‘”electronic ‘beuk’ music with noise guitar and lyrical texts”. This band was called MINIGOD and rose from the ashes of the performative act Aars/rugklachten. Their change not only meant an upgrade in instruments – from jerrycans, barrels and worn-out bass guitar to keyboard and synthesizers – but also from simply screaming into the void towards songs with something of a structure. The release portrays MINIGOD quintessentially – energy above professionalism. From a large number of tracks Rubber made a precise selection allowing punk and satire to dance cheek-to-cheek. MINIGOD is Jan Duivenvoorden (Unit Moebius), Richard van den Bogaert (Leuk & Ko), and Rob de Bakker played keyboard and synthesizer, Edwin Zuidwijk played guitar, and Siuli Ko and Bart Barendregt did the vocals.
This selection of ultra rare tracks represents the sound of the postpunk Dutch band Necronomicon and their label Fetisj from the period 1981-1982. All selections have been mastered from the original released cassettes and unreleased demo-cassettes.
Musique Plastique presents Pop Negatif Wastad’s eponymous EP from 1989 as a 45rpm four tracker, including all of their self penned songs. This is the first release in a series of reissues from the height of the 80’s & 90’s Welsh music scene. Hailing from mid Wales, Pop Negatif Wastad emerged in the late 80’s as the sole collaboration between Esyllt Anwyl and Gareth Potter.
Elena Colombi’s Osàre! Editions presents its third vinyl release: Blood in the Grass, an EP of electro tinged new wave from Hamburg-based producer Johannes Haas, aka L.F.T. (Love, Fist, Tears), the title of which takes inspiration from a 1966 tapestry work by the late Swedish-Norwegian textile artist Hannah Ryggen (1894-1970). Prompted by Colombi and Haas meeting on the dancefloor of Golden Pudel, the eight tracks run the gamut of darkwave and punk sounds, with Haas utilising Korg MS20 and Roland SH101 synthesisers to meld mutant acid with slamming synth lines, ear-worm melodies and opaque lyrics that are left open to interpretation. The new wave aesthetic he draws inspiration from is most evident on tracks Die Geldsmachine, No Covenent and the glistening Chloe-Rose, and with its howling guitar riffs and driving energy geared for late nights, Manon is a rough and ready punk anthem and a tribute to Haas’ “gang” of favourite people in Hamburg.
L’Embrasse is a compilation originally released in 1987, less than 50 copies were distributed at the time through local shops and it is a portrayal of a unique and very little known scene, generated in the deep underground milieu of Amsterdam. None of the tracks presented on this album has ever been re-released after the ultra-limited original edition on cassette format appeared. At the time, a dozen different acts were featured: Menko (S.M. Nurse founder), Robbie Horsfall, Peter Van Garderen (Nine Circles founder), Der Rudi, Antonia (Tonny Timmermans), No Honey From These, Incredible Coöp (S.M. Nurse members), Tranquil Eyes, Beatnik Love Affair, Cheiron, Spin & Kokkie and The Male Ego.
Culminating in four years of recording sessions in Russia, Australia and Northern Ireland, ‘A Voyeur Makes No Mark’ is Nite Fields’ second LP. It’s the follow up to 2015’s ‘Depersonalisation’. If ‘Depersonalisation’ was an album of loss and self-destruction, ‘A Voyeur Makes No Mark’ embodies a self-possessed, buoyant, confrontational figure – though no less anguished with self and the world at large. More outward looking than the Nite Fields debut, and with a redefined aesthetic, themes of rebirth and redefinition carry throughout the album immortalised in principal songwriter and protagonist Danny Venzin’s delicate web of sound. Found within the 8-track LP are sounds rarely heard and even lesser played by the Western hemisphere. Utilising a sonic palette inspired by Venzin’s new surrounds whilst living in Moscow, a purposeful decision was made to incorporate local recording equipment and instrumentation. The results are stark yet richly atmospheric.
Emotional welcomes Kris Baha with ‘Barely Alive’, his first 12″ for Especial. Remixes start with Timothy J Fairplay who laces his trademark echoplexxed wash for a cold wave mover. Next, prodigy Job Sifre builds on his acclaimed debuts with a remodel that goes straight to ‘that’ basement, mixing his love of electro, new wave and industrial. To close, the legend of Das Ding creates a re-alternate remix, fusing his unique fuzz with Baha’s ode for a brittle finale.
First ever vinyl maxi-single release for “Raum”, Grauzone’s best-kept secret and underground mega-gem from 1980.
Written and produced in a country house surrounded only by vast, empty landscapes and an endless sky, ‘Suicide Disco’ is the fruit of a 3-year long collaboration and Years of Denial’s debut LP for Veyl.
Urged to escape from crowded cities and information overload, the duo sharpened their sound and working process through isolation and introspection, crafting 11 songs filled to brim with enormous hooks, New Wave nostalgia and razor-sharp production details. Barkosina’s voice echoes and oscillates against Jerome’s snares, profound and wounded at once. Her expressionist narrative take us to unknown yet familiar places, amplified by dub delays and otherworldly reverbs. Each track tells a story based on the intensity of relationships, a touching and distorted invitation into intimacy and complicity.
Oráculo Records presents “Ombra Festival Unusual Sounds Gathering Volume 1”, a vinyl compilation created to celebrate the very upcoming second edition of Ombra Festival, that will take place next November 29th and 30th in different spots of Barcelona. Released in a one-off limited edition of 300 copies it includes unreleased material by some of the artists that joined Ombra Festival project and that majorly will be part of the scheduled Ombra Festival live shows. Featuring new music by The Present Moment, Celldöd, Psyche, RNXRX and We Are Not Brothers, “Ombra Festival Unusual Sounds Gathering Volume 1 Limited Edition EP” will be fully unveiled and shipped out next september 27th, coinciding with the press presentation of Ombra Festival 2019.
Kris Baha is back on Pinkman Records following up his ‘Can’t Keep The Fact’ EP last year with another great release rich in energy, rhythm and under the influence of his Master. In ‘My Master’ Kris expertly fuses the past and present amidst sonic aesthetics of 80s new-wave, minimal synth and post-punk – all this in amongst fierce percussion, wired sequenced baselines and his vocals up front, revealed and out of the dubby shadows. The result is 6 tracks dribbling with nostalgia in a 2019 context and in classic Kris fashion, can be played on the dance floors of your mind right through to dance floors of reality. In this release Kris submits himself, wholly to his master, which is himself. Who is your master?’