MAGIC MIX

house . techno . electronica . ambient

WEEK STARTING 25 May

Genre pick of the week Cover of Throwback by Glenn Astro.
Essen's own Glenn Astro has called his first album "Throwback", and the name is at once a perfect fit and not nearly the extent of the story. On the one hand, Astro has filled the double-LP with a wealth of old-school gestures and textures - the warm whoosh of analogue synths, the rattle of Rhodes keyboard lines and the sizzle of jazzy drums, all held together by the comforting glue of tape hiss and vinyl crackle. If you're used to the clean sonic lines and stylistic streamlining of so much contemporary house music, then "Throwback" is sure to feel less like a record you just pulled out of plastic wrap than a well-seasoned one salvaged from a flea market or unfinished basement. And yet like so many Tartelet releases - particularly the label's last two full-lengths, Max Graef's "Rivers of the Red Planet" and Uffe's "Radio Days" - it feels fresh and keenly contemporary no matter how vintage the fabric. Rather than throw back to any one moment, he's given us a collage of styles that's quite literally timeless. Astro makes brilliant work of his influences, drawing on hip-hop, house, funk and soul in such equal measure that it's hard to argue that one impulse dominates the other. The sound certainly flirts with the dance floor, with Astro applying highpressure deep house pads on the title cut, gliding on shimmering keys for "One For Viktor," and taking us on a vibraphone-fueled workout with "Kilometer Disco," one of a pair of cuts featuring Max Graef. But Astro obviously relishes the time he spends on the sidelines absorbing the atmosphere, or at home head-nodding to the dustiest corners of his record collection. For every house beat you hear, you'll also dip into juicy, 90’s-style beat science, toasty ambience and buttery chord progressions. Expertly paced but never hustling you along, "Throwback" begs to be heard as a whole but explored at your own easy pace - a record for hazy mornings-after, vibey nights in and endless summer afternoons.


Luke Abbott

Music For A Flat Landscape

Following his critically acclaimed second album 'Wysing Forest', Luke Abbott's next long-form release is the award-winning soundtrack to the British film 'The Goob'. Composed and produced by Luke Abbott in full, the LP picks up where his previous record left off. 'Music For A Flat Landscape' is a set of beautiful, meditative electronic music that shows Luke Abbott is a composer and musician at his zenith. The music was awarded 'Best Soundtrack' at the Stockholm Film Festival in late 2014. The album is released on Abbott's new label Buffalo Temple.


Manchester's most forward thinking, anything goes imprint follows up the industrial punk sludge of Cargo Cult with a completely different kettle of fish from Joe Snape and Another Contemporary Music Ensemble. By now, you should know that each release on Michael Holland's Ono imprint is buy-on-sight rated brilliance, and this expressionistic selection of experimental compostitions from Manchester's best and brightest is no exception. Taking an approach that's as fearless as it is fun, Snape and Co push their instruments to the extreme, working with synthesiser, prepared piano, double bass and anything else they found lying around the Brodsky lobby, to create an otherworldly racket that's at once soothing and energising, uplifting and unsettling. Vocals, strings and keys are warped and repitched, setting the digital processes of modern technology in contrast with the analogue whirr and clunk of  a reel to reel. Invoking musique concrète, accidental composition and a Fluxian sense of fun, "Fleck" sounds like a much more listenable and accomplished Group Ongaku, embracing musicality with idiosyncratic charm. 

FORMAT INFORMATION

CD Info: Limited 100 copy CD in screen printed wrap around sleeve.

Ajukaja & Andrevski

Looking For Something That’s Not There / Mesilind

Estonian duo Ajukaja & Andrevski return after last year’s incredible "Rare Birds EP" with two more pieces of wonderfully weird house music on Jon Rust’s label, Levels. Spun by Joy O on his Beats In Space mix plus further support from Tama Sumo & Lakuti, Jamie XX, Call Super. Skip stones on the lake of life with these oddball cuts! "Looking For Something That's Not There" has a gorgeous, languid, liquid quality to it. Like gently floating across a crystalline lake in a jeweled hovercraft while machine elves row softly and silently. "Mesilind" deploys fast paced hi-hats and crackly snares over a rich tapestry of synthesized textures and digitized strings. Ajukaja & Andrevski bring the sounds of your dreams into focus, and should be complimented on their forward thinking but completely sympathetic production. Vinyl only. Mastered at Dubplates & Mastering, Berlin. Each copy also comes hand stamped with an A4 insert.
* Pronounced Aa-yu-ka-ya and And-rev-skee for those in doubt.


Due to popular demand, the final two remixes which completed Akkord’s recent ‘HTH035’ package have been pressed to vinyl.

Fis (Tri-Angle / Loopy) and Regis (Downwards / Sandwell District) both sourced elements from ‘Gravure’ and ‘Continuum’, tracks from the ‘HTH020’ EP. The former conveys experimental drones and left-of-centre D&B abstraction in his reworking, whilst the latter loops sludgy dub techno atmospherics in his inimitable style.

Mastered by Matt Colton at Alchemy and pressed on 180g white vinyl, the ‘HTH040’ 12” is a companion piece to the ‘HTH020’ and ‘HTH035’ EPs, with a complimentary colour scheme and debossed cover with postcard insert.

Australia's infamous party collective Untzz (not to be confused with Rossendale's hardcore massive - gawmf gawmf gawmf) present a collaboration by two of the label's biggest stars. Babicka and Mic Mills recorded this EP 'under thunderous grey skies while the snow poured outside'. A departure from the usual sun-scorched house sounds, "Lenny" opens proceedings with an icy cold techno romp. Nice delayed elements echo through the mix while a nagging bleep tone repeats on every bar. Still retaining that crisp, well produced and fresh sound that both producers aim for whilst exploring the more Detroitian techno that surely informed the crew. "Depraved (The Brave)" displays the kind of lo-fi rattle and tape saturated aesthetic usually associated with Anthony Naples or some the LIES output (also more recently, London's Rhythm Section and Vancouver's Mood Hut). Scorched dub fragments riding against organic, rhythmic percussion and a deep rumbling kick; all you need to get bodies contorting in the dance. Flip for "Temple" and its concentric, computerized, broken grooves. A tour de force of sound manipulation and mind exploration. Although stylistically different, the sophistication of the synthesis and sound design on this reminds me of when we first heard Floating Points' rich tapestry of sound. Exceptional stuff. Finally, "Write U A Luv Song" concludes with tough bell chime melodies, powerful floor toms and rib-cracking kicks for a hard yet fun loving jaunt into dancefloor voodoo.

Boogie Nite are back on Glenview after their killer disco revision of Tom Tom Club’s “Wordy Rappinghood” and the dancefloor brilliance of “Make Me Hot”, with this four track blinder which comes with all manner of bonus brilliance via a download code. Up first is the funked up attitude of “Better Than Yours”, a mid tempo groove in the same vein as Bionic Boogie’s “Cream”, topped with the slightly bitchy, pecking order posturing of Leah Hannah. Homegirl embarks on the sassiest diva vocal since the heyday of the ballroom house scene, complete with spoken word interludes and plenty of head wobbling. It’s as infectious and inventive as they come – dancefloor dynamite for real. Next up, the percussive punch of “War Time” injects a little leftfield drama into our lives, packing rolling toms, serious strings and swinging brass into six minutes of intense ass shaking. Flip the disc for the disco house strut of the Dennis Edwards’ sampling “Don’t Look Any Further”, a soulful edit that’ll sit perfectly next to any of those essential Firecracker 10”s from a few years back. Last but not least, St Petersburg producer and Glenview regular Kito Jempere offers a deeply danceable dub of “Pisces”, applying loops, adding fx and upping the ante for late night debauchery. With all these delights on wax, and extra tracks on the downloads, there’s a lot to love on another classic Glenview release.


After two sold out 12" EPs on Optimo Trax, Boot & Tax head over to mother label Optimo Music for the release of their debut self-titled, 9-track album.

The Milanese duo are comprised of Cristian Croce (already part of The Barking Dogs) and Claudio Brioschi (Brioski), two of the most popular and respected DJs / producers of the Italian scene who share a great passion for analogue synths and experimentation, and a deep knowledge of both clubbing and production.

Dance albums are notoriously difficult to pull off and often fall flat but Boot & tax succeed where many fail by making a record that will work on open-minded dancefloors but isn't necessarily a dance album. Indeed, my 80-year-old stepmother hasn't danced for years but has been listening to this on repeat all month. Incorporating Claudio's guitar playing, Boot & Tax's trademark eccentric instrumentation along with their analogue arsenal and the occasional vocal from Cristian, they have managed to forge a uniquely characteristic sound world.

Playful, psychedelic, hypnotic, captivating, the album comes in a gatefold sleeve on double vinyl and Boot & Tax will be touring live in support of the record throughout the summer and beyond.


Hailing from Spain and active since the early nineties, Eduardo De La Calle is a seasoned expert in the world of house and techno production. Over the course of 100 plus vinyl releases, he's watched scenes and styles come and go without ever falling victim to the hype or hate of trends. Lately, his muscular productions have increasingly featured in Boddika's DJ sets, teaching the club kids of the world a thing or two about proper dance music. Unfalteringly analogue, De La Calle is back with a quartet of heavy hitters, naturally finding a home on Boddika's Nonplus imprint. "The King Parikshit" opens proceedings in dark and cyclical fashion, chucking you about and a bass heavy murk, occasionally punctuated by blasts of synthesised lightning. "Sudha Nityananda Parivara Vaisnava" descends further into the murk for some deep and threatening dub techno decorated in all manner of hollow, k-hole fx. Over on the second disc, "The Sudama Song" rumbles along in the subs while a hypnotic bell pattern nags away up top and "Sri Sri Ragendra DAS" injects a shot of cinematic intensity into proceedings.

Besides public bathroom fixtures, when we think of American Standard, we think of gritty disco edits ranging from low tempo builders to high octane pounders. On their seventh offering, even the logo, newly styled with the true baby blue colorway found on those very porcelain items in rest stops and restaurants around the country, suggests a move to a more electronic and airy place. The Dream Chimney has been a music stop on the internet, carrying the weight, stature and grandeus of the Library of Congress. Now DC steps into the physical world, putting the glistening touches on the new look, new feel and overall updated AS with these two tracks. On the A-side "Feather Bed For Hatch Back" fuses a reverb soaked 80s drum track with shimmering Sakamoto synths, circular bass pulses and airy drones, carrying us up high into the sky on the warm wings of a jet stream. Flip the disc for "Charlie Dub", a mid-tempo hit of Balearic Beat which sees a solid drum machine rhythm propel us into an alternate dimension of hazy new age pads and textured electronics.There's no way you'll want to flush them down the toilet, but do wash your hands. Welcome to the new American Standard.


Alt-R&B / wonky-soul duo Electric Wire Hustle get the refix treatment on this Somethinksounds four tracker. Yoruba Soul, aka Osunlade arrives at the studio first and gives 'By & Bye' a typically afro-spiritual overhaul - much percussion, minimal piano, EWH emotive vox. Flako is on hand to provide a tumbling Latin-jazz-dance rework of 'Bottom Line'. Seven Davis Jr does his rough, organic, analogue house thing with 'Look In The Sky' - a proper energised boost with soul. Eliphino closes proceedings with a bouncy garage remix of 'If These Are The Last Days'.

DJ Support Gilles Peterson, Benji B, Alexander Nut, Jamie Jones, Altern-8, A Taut Line, Ossie, dOP, Chateu Flight, Deetron, Jimpster, Reboot, Kyodai, Jim Baron (Crazy P), Bill Brewster, Severino and many more.

FORMAT INFORMATION

12" Info: Full picture sleeve.

Known for his work on the Antinote label as DK, 45 ACP is the alias of Parisian producer Dangkhoa Chau. Having seen prior releases on Italian label, Dog in the Night Records and French label Odd Frequencies, 45 ACP has caught the attention of L.I.E.S. Records where we find him issuing his debut six track LP. Not straying too far from the expansive nature of his prior works, we get a wide spread of tracks throughout the record held together by the same sonic narrative and production expertise. Sounds ranging from the slo-mo cosmic chug of "7th Circle", to the percussive boogie leaning "Ground to Ground" or the Sakamoto-esque lush B-side opener "Hidden Garden", 45 ACP delivers start to finish proving equally effective on the dancefloor or in your headphones. Undoubtedly a producer to watch as time goes on.

Take Daniel Leseman's signature swing and loose arrangements, add a touch of Junktion's knack for jazzy chords and sampling, and you get Fouk. After a set of excellent solo releases on their own Outplay records and Slow Town, the duo now turn to Heist with a killer EP. The wobbling bass line of the title track might easily be a playful Dave Holland getting into his zone, which the subtle percussion variations and deep keys give "Kill Frenzy" that perfect vibe to really get a party going. "Lefty's Bar" goes a step further on the jazzy vibe, with the same loose percussion and vintage keys, a lazy horn section and a lovely twisted and turned female vocal sample filtering in and out. "Ken Sent Me" is perhaps the most straightforward track on the EP, with Rhodesy pads and a great use of tremolo to give swing to the 4/4 rhythm. Heist releases never stick around too long, so make sure you jump on this one asap.

Duncan Gray takes a  break from his Tici Taci imprint to drop a mother chugging four tracker of top notch synth sleaze on Andrew Weatherall's Bird Scarer. The multi-instrumentalist and the big man go way back, with Gray providing space guitar on a number of Wevvers' remixes over the years (apparently they call his guitar sound 'pink wray', arf). "Kick Intrusion" opens the EP in a swirl of circular synths, lop-sided rhythms and smooth sub bass, before the dub-chug of "Electric Razor" turns everything up to eleven and takes your head off. On the flip, "Engineer Salute" goes down the slow motion techno avenue, layering fizzing synthlines over a stomping beat, before "Now We Eat" rounds the package off in oddball kosmische fashion. This EP totally nails the ALFOS sound with a musicality and production quality which raises it well above the competition.


Another one of Acacia Records most sought after releases from 1993 and displaying K Hand's multi-faceted production talents. From the euphoric piano-led main room banger of "Not Giving Up" to the dark and gritty, booty-inspired filth of "Beat That Bitch Wit A Stick", it's all undeniably Kelli Hand and all very, very good! Also included is the "Plastic Dream" mix of "Not Giving Up" - hallucinagizing the whole shabizzle into a late night, trippy affair that chugs on and on through the session with sweaty, unashamed glee; and not to forget the "Disco Dream" version, deploying skewed piano chords against a concentric, drunkard groove and looping up to a frenzy. Finally, we get the Claude Young mix of "Deep Down 2", another foray into the joys of Detroit house with shuffled hats a plenty, eyes-down keyboard stabs, deep bass and soulful vox strewn across the mix. Lovely stuff. Some of my favourite K Hands joints al on one, jam-packed 12". Yes please!

Almost two years after HNNY dropped "Mys/Kela" on Let's Play House, the NYC imprint lure him back to drop another sampledelic strut on our asses in the form of "Solsidan" and "Alby". Like the inaugural EP, this one's got two originals, the first of which is heavy on smooth, looped-up vocals with no lyrics, and the second of which takes classic house tropes and romanticizes them to an almost saccharine point. Also like the first EP, there're two remixes included in this package. First up Avalon Emerson follows killers on Icee Hot and Spring Theory with a chunky peak time rework which chops and drops the original samples around a tough house beat. Argentine producer Ana Helder follows up with a disco tinged rewire of "Alby" which rides a thick and subby bassline before arriving at the early evening dancefloor, shaking those static bodies into action.


It's fair to say Khijda's debut EP on Especial was one of the highlights of the label to date. "Mustafa" - in original form and remixed to distraction by Timothy J Fairplay - became the soundtrack for many a Summer party, while "Abdul" was perfect for those deeper late night afters. This time though (Emotional) Especial present a stand alone four track EP of original music so that Khijda's sound can be full explored. Starting with the title cut, the duo aim right for the dance floor, mixing throbbing live bass, guitar and a touch of Eastern mystic vocals that twist and rise higher and higher. This is followed by the deep dub vibes of "Aura", coming on as if the idjut Boys had relocated to Istanbul, the bass rumble and tripped out fx are overlaid with strings, xylophone and even a nice dose of (more) cowbell that is full of funk and ass-moving swing. On the flip things take a warped turn with "Indecis". It's incessant rhythm and Eastern flavour, mixed with 80s style cut up vocals, take the sounds championed by Baris K and Acid Arab to new (and bazar) heights. Finally then, the EP comes down with the beautiful Balearic grooves of "The Quiet Before The Red Stop". With a nod to their roots Khidja again forge their own journey, creating and carving out a sound of their own that is unique and at the same time compelling. Watch the skies.

Le' Noiz

Wanna Dance / Certainly

The first release on Trax naturally came from the Jesse Saunders stable. It was an agreement between pressing plant owner Sheerman and Saunders and Vince Lawrence that led to the formation of the label. Early pressings even had a Jes Say catalogue number etched in them, though subsequent editions bear the Trax cat. no. "Wanna Dance", unusually for Trax is not really house at all, bearing far more similarities with the experimental proto-house / industrial-electro productions of On-U-Sound and the Doug Wimbish / Skip McDonald crew. Says Vince "This is built around the fact that we found out that could call the Linn drum people and order a chip and that said somethin' - we got our first sampler. When we learned that you could say shit and play it like an instrument that was a big deal then."

Repressed and remastered for 2015 & featuring all original label artwork, with permission from Trax records "Wanna Dance?" is now available again to be rediscovered.


Lord Of The Isles

Ultraviolet (Original & Part 2)

Scottish house genius Neil McDonald began his steady rise to the top of the game back in 2011 with this absolute belter on LA's Adult Contemporary. Out of press since then, second hand prices soared as more and more people have fallen in love with the track's stunning melodies, mindbending production and purposeful beat, rightly acknowledging it as a modern classic. Now Adult Contemporary do the honourable thing and deliver a fresh 2015 repress, replacing the slightly weaker Beat Broker dub with Neil's own rework for the B-side this time. Driven on by the hypnotic chug of a steady, snare heavy beat and percolating bass synth groove, "Ultraviolet" finds the middle ground between Todd Terje's "Ragysh" and Space Dimension Controller's "Love Quadrant", taking control of the dancefloor, but with the echo drenched synthlines of futuristic boogie. Despite the solid bottom end, the track still manages to be airy and uplifting and the combination of expansive Scando disco melody and a totally psychedelic sound palette is completely irresistible. For the eleven minute "Part Two", McDonald stretches the track out a little and strips back the leadline for a subtle journey incorporating elements of his mature forays into ambient electronics. Two killer mixes of a modern classic on one disc, who could ask for any more!

Loui$

Magic Dance / Pink Footpath

Proper, licensed, re-master of the mega-rare Blow Up records release of the Italo masterpiece "Pink Footpath" by Loui$. Originally released in 1985, this gem has become one of the most highly sought after Italo disco tracks around. On the A-side is "Magic Dance", an emotive, male-led number with electrofunk flavour and a big play for Red Laser's Il Bosco. Alongside this, the more instrumental track "Pink Footpath" really gets the DJs drooling. With its killer analogue B-line, dreamy synths and Balearic guitar riffs, it’s easy to see why it became such an anthem at the early Ibiza parties as well as a late night favourite in Chicago and New York. There's been a couple of dodgy boots of this over the years but this new, official pressing trumps them all on quality, and finally gets the picture sleeve release it deserves. Highly recommended.

Mak & Pasteman

Do 4 Me / Blue Suede

Return of the Mak (& Pasteman) once again, back on Lobster Boy with two bass music bangers to get your party started! The Leeds pair finally release their massive 'Do 4 Me' which has been knocking about online since winter 2014. Crisp hi hats sizzle on a driving garage rhythm, while moody, industrial metallic synths and sprightly rave keys pad out the space (halfway through the track there's even a nod to Leeds' finest LFO - listen out for some electronic bleeps). The hook is provided by a chopped up old school house diva vocal sample on repeat - cue mass singalong and a packed dancefloor. Flipside cut 'Blue Suede' fires up a jittery speed shuffle that's part footwork, part techno, part steam train, punctuated by a melancholic, echo-laden pitched down vocal.


FORMAT INFORMATION

12" Info: Full picture sleeve.

Róisín Murphy follows up 2014's gorgeous Italophone EP, "Mi Senti" with her first long player in 8 years and it's well worth the agonising wait. A triumph of ambition, creativity and talent, "Hairless Toys" sees Murphy and long time collaborator Eddie Stevens take us on a catwalk stroll through a kaleidoscopic range of influences and styles without ever missing that crucial turn. Although the refined beats ensure we never stray too far from the dancefloor, the LP never comes close to losing itself in a formulaic mire, switching up tempo and groove like the most forward thinking selector. The wonky cosmic swagger of "Evil Eyes" and headturning dub-not-dub of "Uninvited Guest" bring to mind previous remixer Daniele Baldelli's classic sets, while "Gone Fishing" and "Exploitation" push sleek machine funk into the psychedelic fringes of alt pop. At the centre of the album, "Exile" offers us a moment of stoned contemplation as Róisín pulls us close into the swirling fug of hazy Americana, before she brings down the curtain with the leftfield electronica of "Hairless Toys" and "Unputdownable", a sublime album closer which updates the baroque pop of Kate Bush for a new generation. Murphy's vocals are clearer, smoother and stronger than ever, soaring and swooning over the sonically adventurous production to take us to the most dizzying heights. A strong contender for the 'end of year' lists, "Hairless Toys" is a career defining best from the astounding Róisín Murphy.

FORMAT INFORMATION

LP Info: 180g vinyl pressing.

Niagara

Mustor & Falcão

The second release on FTD is also the second release of Lisbon based production trio Niagara. Although they haven’t released a record since "Ouro Oeste" dropped on Príncipe back in 2013, their signature sound has travelled through many different guises. "Mustor & Falcão" charts such experimentations during this time, from the ‘fall-over drunk’ guitars on "Falcão", to the wedding bells and released hounds on "Mustor". Garnishing praise from players such as JD Twitch, Midland, Tim Sweeny, Surgeon and Will Bankhead amongst many others, it's the head turning, uncompromising production values that set the record, and the label ahead of the pack. Psychedelic without being hippy, twisted but danceable and exotic without being clichéd, this is the very definition of right now, right now. Fans of Huntleys & Palmers, Principe, Levels, Bleep etc, take note! 

Octave One

Burn It Down

Octave One are Lenny Burden and Lawrence Burden (with revolving members of Lynell Burden, Lorne Burden, and Lance Burden). Their recorded output has come exclusively on influential labels Tresor and their own 430 West and has very much defined the techno trends of the day. From hard edged to tripped out, futuristic to soulful, they have done it all and then some.

Made using a fine collection of hardware including bits by Roland, Moog, Dave Smith Instruments and much more besides, it follows 2008’s ‘Summer On Jupiter’. Kicking off with the rooted kicks and sci-fi, slo mo techno of ‘Eighth Wonder’ the album unfolds through elastic and triumphant diva house on ‘ Jazzo / Lose Myself’, cosmic soundscaping on ‘Afterglow’ and melodically enriched grooves and funky guitar licks on ‘A Better Tomorrow (O1 Remake)’. Elsewhere there is breezy and anthemic fair with ‘Believer’, soul kissed sounds and lush pads on ‘Whatever She Wants’ and then shapeshifting, industrial tinged beats and twisted techno in the later half.

Things unfold on ‘Burn It Down’ with a real sense of narrative, though, and despite being a techno album never do things grow to stern or serious. Instead the mood and tempo switches up knowingly, just like an Octave One live set, and really transports you to another place entirely in the process.


Pitched somewhere between the molasses gloop of "Acid Tracks" and his more gospel moments, Pierre's Phantasy Club saw Nathaniel Pierre Jones ripping the dancefloor apart with a wicked fusion of pulsating 303 and soulful vocal. The sequencer work here is second to none, hammering you with a full array of frequencies, while the show stealing vocal sucks you in with its emotional impact, before Pierre freaks you out with a rack full of effects. For those who like to go deep into the mix, the Dub and Instrumental mixes on the flip offer two different ways to make you jack. "I'll put the bug in you it'll make you stay, I'll plant it it'll never go away". We believe you, Pierre.


Piscean Group originally formed as part of an astrological union founding members and initial line up Sir Robert & Osunlade share. Since the group's conception, Osunlade has created an open coalition of musicians from his childhood home St Louis. As an open forum, the group has no real members and is a voice for all writers, musicians and performers alike. The non-credit of participants gives the group's identity a backseat to the sheer pleasure of the music. This debut long player is intended as a soundtrack to an, as yet, unmade film. With an open landscape and no actual movie to score, the group’s imagination was allowed to go from soft to hard groove, and throw in a few cameo performances from Osunlade and rising LA pianist Daniel Crawford. Cinematic jazz, spiritual broken beat, deep, dreamy downbeat sounds abound. This movement proves to be the start of a long musical journey. Whether a Pisces or not, this will set your mood and elevate your spirit.


Prinzhorn Dance School

Reign / You Are The Space Invader - Shit Robot / Optimo (Espacio) Remixes

Prinzhorn Dance School’s spartan sonics have often lead to some hand-wringing when trying to play out their records ‘in the club’. In the first 7 years of their existance, there was a sole club-friendly remix in their entire catalogue. It is for these reasons that we’re really stoked to announce that we now have a second. DFA veteran Shit Robot takes the track “Reign” from their imminently released third album “Home Economics” and turns it into a deep, dark floor-filler. The band’s pleading vocals dive in and out of a throbbing bassline, with new robotic percussion seamlessly blending with the band’s original bangs and clangs. The flip features that previously alluded to Optimo (Espaco) mix of You Are The Space Invader - previously only available commercially in digital form, this is the first (slightly) wider vinyl release of this classic remix. An edition of 500 hand-stamped and numbered white label copies, not to be pressed again for another 7 years or so. Probably.

Sad Edit

Sad Edit 1

Cancel your summer holidays, the biggest record of the year has landed, ready to occupy all your time for the forseeable future. German producer Florian Kupfer comes totally correct with two killer edits of the smooth voiced siren of Holland-On-Sea, Sade. On the A-side, the warm tones of "I Couldn't Love You More" are given a tasteful frequency adjustment before Florian puts a stomping donk on it with his usual percussive power. Coated with the faint hiss of tape saturation, the rhythm track is certain to propel you to about an inch away from the speaker stack; in fact, you'll be prefectly placed for Sade to whisper sweet nothings in your ear. On the flipside, the summery warmth of "Shelter Me" gets a haze house remix par excellence, those slick rhodes keys and sunkissed guitar lines tracing circles around Kupfer's insistent percussion and thin film of grainy distortion. Perfect in their simplicity, these two reworks over a smooth, soulful and sexy element sorely lacking in most of the functional club tackle at the moment. Superb stuff.


It's double debut time here as Berlin based DJ and producer Maurizio Schirò pops his waxen cherry on the freshly minted Basement Night Feeling Sound label, delivering two floor aimed tracks that are already rocking spots for Marcellus Pittman, John Swing and Gari Romalis. The young producer has struck upon a signature sound which sits midway between the hypnotic repetition of the Berlin mainroom and the rough soul of the Detroit basement, assembling a collage of dusty samples in a strictly Teutonic arrangement. The A-side sees SCM go in tough and uncouth on "You Still Remember", topping a rib rattling kick with the same snippets of Marlena Shaw's "Woman Of The Ghetto" you may remember (geddit?!) Blueboy working with. The crackly aesthetic, tough drums and unhinged piano come together to give this a flavour of Wu Tang gone house or DJ Nature slamming through the peak time in pure hedonism. Flip the disc for more deep and dislocated dancefloor funk courtesy of "Ehy Yo". The deep and rolling rhythm track plays host to scratchy rhythm guitar, a dexterous jazz bassline and of course those raw vocals, which cut through the mix to get you peaking! Keep your eyes peeled for the producer and the label - this is an essential debut.


STAFF COMMENTS

Patrick says: Two rough and dusty cuts of the deepest, dopest sampledelic Detroit styled house on fresh imprint Basement Night Feeling Sound.

'For some it might be Kraftwerk, but for me, my favourite electronic pioneers are probably Australia's Severed Heads. They were so far ahead of the game that they had to invent a lot of the technology they used. Inspired, playful, never boring and always sonically brilliant they pushed at the frontiers of electronic music more than most. By the late 80s they were pursuing a slightly more polished course and made a series of records that had the potential to reach a much larger audience. Possibly because of their name they never quite managed that, but they had several big club hits; the dub versions of which crossed over into the nascent house scene. I am honoured that I am able to make the dubs of those three 12"s from 1988 - 1990 available again. On side A is “Greater Reward (Dub)” which has possibly thee most beautiful piano in the history of dance music. Often sampled but never equalled, it still brings joy to dancefloors 27 years after it was released. Severed Heads original production and mastering was so ahead of the game that it needed only the slightest re-master. The original, while perfect in every way was always tricky to DJ with as THAT piano was right at the start so if it was mixed in, it wouldn't get heard until much later in the track. I've slightly rearranged it for DJ use but haven't added anything whatsoever. Side A also includes the majestic original. On the AA side. “Big Car (Crash Dub)” is a masterclass in how to make a track that chugs that is tedium free. At the time it had possibly the heaviest kick drum I'd ever heard and was akin to a mutant cousin of one of David Morales legendary Red Zone house dubs. “All Saints Day (Saints Day Dub)” rounds off the EP with future looking sound design, hypno bass and trademark Severed Heads edit magic.' - JD Twitch

For me, the most exciting Optimo Trax record we've had in, and there's been plenty! Anyone with a penchant for the darker, more seedier side of dance music needs to check out these bombs. "All Saints Day" was a huge Jamal Moss number in his live sets (and on his Medussa series). The piano power edit of "Greater Reward" is pure hi-energy rave bliss with those strong late 80s drums riding true while "Big Car" should rock any retro-tinged 'Balearic Beat' dancefloor with its bright, feel good production values. Four absolute killers, make no mistake. Recommended.


STAFF COMMENTS

Matt says: "Greater Reward" and "All Saints Day" are possibly two of the biggest, yet little known mainroomers of all time! New beat meets early house in pre-1990 Australia! Madness but so, so good.

Vatican Shadow / Cut Hands

Azar Swan Variations

    Super-limited, one time pressing of 400 only for the world. 180gm, thick jacket, poly-lined collector sleeve.

    Vatican Shadow is Dominick Fernow (Prurient, Hospital Productions). Cut Hands is William Bennett (Whitehouse). The importance of these two sound innovators cannot be overstated; the pair on the same 12” is a landmark for collectors and noise aficionados.

    Mastered by Kris Lapke (Alberich)

    Azar Swan released “…And Blow Us A Kiss” in 2014 through Zoo Music (label owned by Brandon of Crocodiles and Dee Dee of Dum Dum Girls). the original files used by Vatican Shadow (a: we hunger) and cut hands (b: for last and forever) are selected from this album and reworked into beat-driven melodic noise compositions.

    Vatican Shadow has previous works on such labels as Modern Love and Blackest Ever Black. Cut Hands has previous works on Blackest Ever Black and Susan Lawly



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