20 Albums from 2019

Yesterday we presented the preferences of our readers from last year, now this is a list of 20 albums from 2019 that made an impression on us.


We have three pure electro albums from E.R.P., Jeremiah R. and Plant43 and the new electro-synthy album of veteran David Carretta, his first solo album for ten years. On the darker side of the synth palette we have two EBM/synth-pop albums from Boy Harsher and Years Of Denial, the debut album of Kris Baha, the third album of Greek producer June, a new one from Jason Letkiewicz aka Steve Summers under his new moniker Opposing Currents and two more industrial albums from Autumns and Colombian Filmmaker.
On the other had we have two acid gems from DimDJ and Paranoid London, the first ever Gladio album, the second album from Mannequin boss Alessandro Adriani and an experimental/ambient album from veteran Function on Tresor.
So, here it is compiled in chronological order.
Continue reading “20 Albums from 2019”

20 Albums from 2019

Photonz – Nuit [DE257]

Photonz is the alias of Marco Rodrigues a DJ, producer and driving force of Lisbon’s underground scene. For little over a decade now, he’s been crafting his own deeply personal style of Portuguese house and techno. As a DJ, Photonz grew a reputation for deep crates and intensely euphoric sets and in 2017, together with Violet (co-founder at his Radio Quantica) and Lisbon’s own Rabbit Hole collective, he started the now infamous Mina parties – a monthly, sex-positive, queer and intersectional-feminist techno party aimed at using the dissociative potential of intense raving to create a temporary space of suspension away from patriarchal expectations. ‘Nuit’ is Photonz’s debut album and a simultaneous reference the Egyptian Goddess of the Stars or Night. Marco was really swept away by the concept of ‘freedom of form under the night sky’, the accepting embrace of Nuit. Ancestral, but also socially advanced and utopian; a deification of the night time. These ideas manifest themselves as eleven songs spread across two LPs that wax and wane like the moon. Photonz channels early techno, Drexciyan rhythms, balearic & atmospheric house; layering sounds, creating moments.

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Photonz – Nuit [DE257]

Photonz – Etheric Body Music EP [DE239]

Photonz is the alias of Marco Rodrigues a DJ, producer and driving force of Lisbon’s underground scene. Etheric Body Music is Photonz’s debut 6-track EP for Dark Entries and a simultaneous reference to hermeticism and EBM (Electronic Body Music). Marco loves that ‘aesthetic when 80s industrial and EBM bands split up and start to make trance in the early 90s and all the ritual magick pushes them to zen stuff and they do ecstasy.’ There’s this concept in theosophy and hermetic philosophy of the Etheric Body, which is an energy body superimposed and connected to the physical body, similar to the acupuncture idea of an energetic body. That idea manifests itself as six primal club cuts, which also channel early techno, Drexciyan rhythms, balearic & old school jack. Raw arpeggiated synth lines and bass blast jut against metallic stabs and highly percussive shakedowns to create mournful atmospheric warped house.

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Photonz – Etheric Body Music EP [DE239]

VA – Mexico Relief

Mexico was hit by a severe earthquake on September 19. The capital Mexico City, and many neighboring towns suffered massive damage as hundreds of buildings collapsed, thus trapping many people alive inside. The Mexican Red Cross is currently taking care of many of the victims and is need of any type of aid. In support of the crisis that our Mexican brothers and sisters are experiencing right now, some of the music producers in our community have put together a compilation with the purpose of donating all proceeds to the Mexican Red Cross. Internationally renowned producers, such as Legowelt, Silent Servant, Tevo Howard, Alessandro Adriani and Black Merlin have contributed with amazing music, as well as solid tracks from local talent like AAAA, Gsr.brg, Bad Name Roy and many others. With a price of 9.99 Euros, you can buy this compilation at the official bandcamp page; however, you can contribute with any higher amount by naming your own price. Help is always needed, especially in countries like Mexico. Show some love and enjoy 26 mind-melting tracks from Mexico and around the world.

VA – Mexico Relief

Ursa’s Reef – The Ninth Gate [EYE007]

Ursa’s Reef is a late 80’s traveller and surfer wandering endlessly in the secluded raves of Goa, searching for his own soul while dancing in abandon to the proto-Trance journeys of Goa Gil. Brought up in Sintra, Portugal, by a family of uptight catholic hypocrites, UR goes rogue in his early 20’s, seduced by the esoteric teachings of Levi, Pessoa, Crowley and Israel Regardie while keeping an unhealthy obsession with Roxy Music. He is also a fictional, made up persona – a musical heteronym – of Lisbon-based DJ and producer Marco Rodrigues, mostly known for his work under the name Photonz. Together with his friend Jose Acid – a musical heteronym of Joao Ervedosa AKA Shcuro – he makes one last trip to Goa that could prove fatal.

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Ursa’s Reef – The Ninth Gate [EYE007]

Photonz – Corroios Royalty EP [SIL019]

As one of the frontrunners of the new Portuguese house sound Photonz has been flexing a balance between the UK and the Continent way before it became a question of ZIP codes for him, and the EP’s true to this intricate signature. On the flipside, Silverback staple The Phantom reinterprets Parque da Liberdade as an old school flavoured, meditation-tinged piano jam, while London heavyweight Ikonika injects the same track with a dose of her trademark retrofuturistic funky.

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Photonz – Corroios Royalty EP [SIL019]

Photonz – Lotus Wheel On My Orion [VIVOD011]

Vivod move into their next series of releases with Portuguese maestro Photonz at the helm. A 4 tracker of dark house that effortlessly slip into the label catalogue entitled Lotus Wheel On My Orion. Beautiful packaging again this time with full printed sleeve.

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Photonz – Lotus Wheel On My Orion [VIVOD011]

Legowelt – Institute Of The Overmind [UTTUFACT]

The Dutch artist releases music at a rate of knots – there’s been at least nine albums under the Legowelt name alone now, and he has over 30 different aliases, all of which interact in weird, wonderful ways. His music has appeared on labels as Creme, Clone and Bunker bringing that original Dutch West Coast Flavour. Here Institute Of The Overmind, which was made live in a session filmed for FACT TV,gets the vinyl treatment backed with a monster 90s trance re-work from Photonz.

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Legowelt – Institute Of The Overmind [UTTUFACT]

Photonz – Gnosis Of Wolfers [CR1281]

Photonz, Portugese producer based in London Marco Rodriguez, makes his debut on Creme Organization. His first cut, ‘Gnosis Of Wolfers’ is a raw, knackered sounding house track with glassy melodic tension and slow-jack drums. It’s intense, multi-layered and nervy and keeps you engaged from start to finish. ‘Ceremonial Acid’ is then an airy, spacious affair with heavenly pads and gurgling synths and drums. Loose but atmospheric, it’s a fulsome track that really places you in the middle of Photonz’s sound world. ‘Sad Mania’ is another misty sounding cut with watery droplets, aqueous textures and ramshackle drums rattling below, before ‘Filterhatz’ is a slow and sludgy acid offering with sharp hi hats, filtered 303 lines and lots of wobble. Lastly, digital only track ‘Basik’ rounds out the EP in brooding fashion, with big retro synths, percolating drums and pinging percussion.

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Photonz – Gnosis Of Wolfers [CR1281]

Bohemian Groove – High Jinks [TOB031]

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Bohemian Groove are taking their inspiration from the infamous Bohemian Club, a conclave of powerful men who met annually at the Bohemian Grove campground in California to plan world-changing developments including the Manhattan Project. The three puppetmasters of the Groove make machine-based body music connecting the dots between house, techno, and something altogether uncategorizable. Now they are unleashing their first standalone dance manifesto in the form of  the “High Jinks” / “Low Jinks” EP, with remixes by Gilb’r and Photonz.

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Bohemian Groove – High Jinks [TOB031]

VA – Dead Cities Vol.1 [EYED001]

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Portuguese duo Photonz curate Dead Cities compilation – whose title is inspired by the Future Sound of London album of the same name – which is the most articulate expression yet of their love of warped electronic music. Limiting the selection to a group of artists who are close, local Portuguese talent is prominent and due to this tightly-knit approach, there is a cohesive sound on the compilation, but it could never be called smooth or polished.

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VA – Dead Cities Vol.1 [EYED001]

Photonz – Love Spectre EP [DBA007]

New release from Photonz on Don’t Be Afraid imprint. “Spectre” is a forward thinking house track with a jaded xylophone hooks and cold as ice groove. “Wall” is a slice of trademark Photonz Portuguese acid, an infinite groove that builds and builds. “Dokos” is a more downbeat track, with old school house sound of Chicago and Detroit. “Prometheus” catches the pair at their most experimental, upping the tempo and unleashing an ambitious techno juke roller.

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Photonz – Love Spectre EP [DBA007]

Sangue de Cristo – Ponta do Mato / Cova do Vapor [EYE003]

One Eyed Jacks label offers a sterling collaboration between Photonz and Tiago Miranda. Both Portuguese natives, they’ve dedicated the tracks to remote, desolate beaches outside their capital city. ‘Ponta do Mato’ is a a sublime, supple Baleari-tinged groover with warm traces of classic Acid House done in deeply romantic style, while ‘Cova do Vapor’ is more disco-jacked and psychedelic with frothy cosmic synthlines.

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Sangue de Cristo – Ponta do Mato / Cova do Vapor [EYE003]