synth-pop . alt-R&B . cold wave . industrial

WEEK STARTING 14 May

Genre pick of the week Cover of Strange Desire EP & Mannequin EP by Passion Theatre.
In 2018, Sean Worsey, a successful lawyer in California, began to receive some rather surprising emails. These were not from prospective clients, or about current cases he was working on, but rather queries from record collectors. They wanted more details about a pair of obscure, largely forgotten records he’d made in the mid 1980s as part of a virtually unknown band called Passion Theatre.

To say he was surprised is an understatement. “People from around the world were emailing, calling and messaging us about the music, particularly a track called ‘Vacation Day’,” he says. “Our records were rare and gaining in value, mainly because there were not many manufactured at the time. By 2019, several individuals in the music industry had emailed me about licensing tracks.”

Space Talk eventually agreed with Sean to include ‘Vacation Day’ on Charles Bals’ second compilation, Retour Au Club Meduse. Impressed with the quality of the compilation Sean approached them again to discuss whether they would be interested in reissuing both of his old EP’s in full, an idea he’d been considering for a few months already.

The original studio tapes were long gone but a friend of Sean’s had some mint vinyl copies which made the trip from California to use as the master source, restored and mastered superbly by Technology Works in London. The striking original artwork from the two EP’s has been faithfully reworked into a gatefold double vinyl LP by designer Asger Behncke Jacobsen and features extensive interview/sleeve notes by Matt Anniss.

In the words of Sean Worsey - “One of the nicest things about the renewed interest in our music is that we can now enjoy it for what it is - back then we were a bit too worried about succeeding.” 

STAFF COMMENTS

says: I'm not sure this could be any more relevant to my interests; Painfully obscure 80s synthpop, heavy on the groove, angular, art-ish and kinda flouncy in a Balearic way. In other words, it's my dream record. Buy it now or regret it later!

TRACK LISTING

1. Strange Desire (EP1: Strange Desire EP)
2. International Love Affair
3. Menage A Trois
4. No For Answers
5. Mannequin (Fiesta Mix - EP2: Mannequin EP)
6. Vacation Day
7. In Love With A Mannequin

Beautify Junkyards With Belbury Poly

Painting Box

    The A side is a cover of The Incredible String Band’s Painting Box, originally written by Mike Heron. It’s a collaboration between Beautify Junkyards and Belbury Poly and produced by Jim Jupp. The flipside is an original by Beautify Junkyards, Ritual in Transfigured Time, produced by João Branco Kyron.

    Both have a delightfully disorientating sound. The artists complement each other perfectly with their through-the looking-glass electronic psychedelia.

    Beautify Junkyards:
    A talented group of Lisbon based multi-instrumentalists headed up by João Branco Kyron on vocals and keyboards with Helena Espvall (formerly of Espers) on cello, flute and electric guitar, Martinez on vocals, João Moreira acoustic guitar and keyboards, Sergue Ra on bass and Antonio Watts on drums and percussion.

    Belbury Poly:
    Jim Jupp is co-manager of UK label Ghost Box Records. As Belbury poly he’s released EPs, singles and six albums on the label. He is also a member of The Belbury Circle along with Jon Brooks (of The Advisory Circle) and occasional collaborator, John Foxx. He’s remixed tracks for several artists including John Foxx and Bill Ryder-Jones (The Coral) and has co-written a song with Paul Weller for his 2020 album On Sunset.

    Andy Bell

    See My Friends EP

      The two tracks from Andy Bell’s debut solo single reworked by Pye Corner Audio, with the original tracks remastered by Heba Kadry.

      TRACK LISTING

      1.The Commune (Pye Corner Audio Remix)
      2.Plastic Bag (Pye Corner Audio Remix)
      3.The Commune
      4.Plastic Bag

      John Carpenter

      Lost Themes

        John Carpenter, the legendary director and composer behind Halloween, Escape From New York, They Live, Assault on Precinct 13 and many more announces his debut solo album ‘Lost Themes’ on Sacred Bones Records. 

        John Carpenter has been responsible for much of the horror genre’s most striking soundtrack work in the fifteen movies he’s both directed and scored. The themes that drive them can be stripped to a few coldly repeating notes, take on the electrifying thunder of a rock concert, or submerge themselves into exotic, unholy miasmas. It’s work that instantly floods his fans’ musical memory with imagery of a menacing shape stalking a babysitter, a relentless wall of ghost-filled fog, lightning-fisted kung fufighters, or a mirror holding the gateway to hell. Lost Themes asks Carpenter’s acolytes to visualize their own nightmares.

        “Lost Themes was all about having fun,” Carpenter says. “It can be both great and bad to score over images, which is what I’m used to. Here there were no pressures. No actors asking me what they’re supposed to do. No crew waiting. No cutting room to go to. No release pending. It’s just fun. And I couldn’t have a better set-up at my house, where I depended on (collaborators) Cody (Carpenter, of the band Ludrium) and Daniel (Davies, who scored I, Frankenstein) to bring me ideas as we began improvising. The plan was to make my music more complete and fuller, because we had unlimited tracks. I wasn’t dealing with just analogue anymore. It’s a brand new world. And there was nothing in any of our heads when we started other than to make it moody.”

        As is Carpenter’s style, repetition is the key to the thundering power of these tracks, their energy swirling with shredding chords, soaring organs, unnerving pianos and captivating percussion. Singularly titled to inspire dread with such names as “Vortex,” “Dominion,” “Abyss,” and “Purgatory,” but all linked into a unified whole, Lost Themes has a mesmerizing power. Horror fans will be reminded of Carpenter’s past works, as well as ancestors like Mike Oldfeld’s Tubular Bells and the raging guitars and chiming percussion of Goblin’s Suspiria. “’Both classical music and rock and roll are part of my musical language, which is riff-driven,” Carpenter explains. “So if you listen carefully, I’m sure you can hear some echoes from my past. But I’m sure that’s true of any composer. You just bring your music along with you.”

        TRACK LISTING

        1. Vortex
        2. Obsidian
        3. Fallen
        4. Domain
        5. Mystery
        6. Abyss
        7. Wraith
        8. Purgatory
        9. Night

        On Halloween 2014, the director and composer John Carpenter introduced the world to the next phase of his career with “Vortex,” the first single from Lost Themes, his first-ever solo record. In the months that followed, Lost Themes rightfully returned Carpenter to the forefront of the discussion of music and film’s crucial intersection. Carpenter’s foundational primacy and lasting influence on genre score work was both rediscovered and reaffirmed. So widespread was the acclaim for Lost Themes, that the composer was moved to embark on something he had never before entertained – playing his music live in front of an audience.

        2016 will host the first ever John Carpenter tour and in true Carpenter spirit, a sequel to Lost Themes: Lost Themes II. The follow-up brings quite a few noticeable changes to the process, which result in an even more cohesive record. Lost Themes’ cowriters Cody Carpenter (John’s son) and Daniel Davies (John’s godson) both returned. Cody was recently also heard as a composer for Showtime’s Masters of Horror series (Cigarette Burns and Pro-Life), and NBC’s Zoo. Davies was a composer for NBC’s Zoo, as well as the motion picture Condemned.

        All three brought in sketches and worked together in the same city, a luxury they weren’t afforded on the first Lost Themes. The result was a more focused effort, one that was completed on a compressed schedule — not unlike Carpenter’s classic, notoriously low-budget early films. The musical world of Lost Themes II is also a wider one than that of its predecessor. More electric and acoustic guitar help flesh out the songs, still driven by Carpenter’s trademark minimal synth.

        Keep your eyes peeled for John and his co-writers to hit the road next year performing both lost and newly found themes, in addition to retrospective work from Mr. Carpenter’s multi-generational career. Long live the Horror Master.

        STAFF COMMENTS

        says: Master of Kosmische synth-workouts and general synth-based sountracking legend John Carpenter returns here with the second instalment of his surprising 'not a soundtrack' offering from last year. More twinkling synths, motorik pulses and cavern-soaked reverbed drums. Though soundtracks have always been Carpenters raison d'etre, this outstanding expansion on his lost themes selections just goes to show that Carpenter is indeed the king of the cosmic.

        TRACK LISTING

        1. Distant Dream (3:51)
        2. White Pulse (4:21)
        3. Persia Rising (3:40)
        4.Angel’s Asylum (4:17)
        5.Hofner Dawn (3:15)
        6.Windy Death (3:40)
        7.Dark Blues (4:16)
        8.Virtual Survivor (3:58)
        9.Bela Lugosi (3:23)
        10. Last Sunrise (4:29)
        11. Utopian Facade (3:48)
        12.Real Xeno (4:30) (CD / Download Bonus Track)

        Cut Copy

        Freeze, Melt

          As you could possibly guess from the title, 'Freeze, Melt' is a more restrained affair than recent Cut Copy releases. You could never accuse the Melbourne outfit of resting on their stylistic laurels, covering New Order-esque melancholic pop, hazy summer synth jams, filtered funk, acid house and stadium bangers across their five previous long players. After relocating to Copenhagen, removed from his studio, safe space and record collection, Dan Whitford took inspiration from the minimalism and cool of his Scandinavian surroundings, as well as the immersive sparsity of Four Tet, Floating Points and Terry Riley. Despite this detour into the ambient realm, this remains a Cut Copy LP, so there are still hooks, grooves and playful motifs shimmering amid the restraint - the 'Melt' to the 'Freeze' I guess.

          STAFF COMMENTS

          says: Freeze, Melt is every bit the Cut Copy LP you'd expect, with huge synths and melodic vocals leading the way through a perfectly sequenced set of downbeat percussives, huge melodies and soulful grooves.

          TRACK LISTING

          1. Cold Water
          2. Like Breaking Glass
          3. Love Is All We Share
          4. Stop, Horizon
          5. Running In The Grass
          6. A Perfect Day
          7. Rain
          8. In Transit

          Fatima Al Qadiri

          Medieval Femma

            ‘Medieval Femme’, Fatima Al Qadiri’s new ten track suite inspired by the classical poems of Arab women, invokes a daydream through the metaphor of an Islamic garden, at the border between depression and desire, where the present temporarily dissolves, leaving only past and future. Mixing neon drones and the faint outlines of Arabesque melody, ‘Medieval Femme’ reveals a fully-realised, dreamlike setting, shaded with colour and subtle friction. Conveying a thematic state of melancholic longing, Fatima seeks to transport the listener to a place of reverie and desolation, to question the line between two seemingly opposite states and rejoice in celestial sorrow. ‘Medieval Femme’ takes instrumentation from music of the Middle Ages, recast in a futuristic setting; soft-synth lutes, organs and pipes reverberate in space while gauzy pulses ripple in response. Fatima's vocals of repeated, mantra-like phrases are sometimes pitched and altered, drawing out increasingly intense peaks, angelic choruses and yearning incantations. On ‘Tasakuba’, Kaltham Jassim’s recitation of a couplet from the 7th century poet Al-Khansa', the sorrow of her words are given a turbulent, hallucinatory setting, before the album resolves on the final song, the limpid, airy ‘Zandaq’.

            TRACK LISTING

            A1. Medieval Femme
            A2. A Certain Concubine
            A3. Sheba
            A4. Vanity
            A5. Stolen Kiss Of A Succubus
            B1. Golden
            B2. Qasmuna (Dreaming)
            B3. Malaak
            B4. Tasakuba
            B5. Zandaq

            Lisa Gerrard & Jules Maxwell

            Burn

              Dead Can Dance members Lisa Gerrard and Jules Maxwell have teamed up under a new guise with James Chapman (MAPS) to create a studio album, titled ‘Burn’. The record began its journey more than seven years ago, when Lisa met Irish theatre composer Jules Maxwell before working together for the first time. ‘Burn’ is set for release on 7th May 2021 via Atlantic Curve. Speaking about the origins of the album, Lisa Gerrard explains, “It is with great pleasure that I share this collaboration with Jules Maxwell. Jules and I began our creative journey with Dead Can Dance. We realised that we could connect through improvisation and that musical exploration continues to evolve with this present work.”

              Although this record is a new release, its beginnings go all the way back to 2012 during that year’s Dead Can Dance world tour. Originally brought in as a live keyboard player, Jules Maxwell helped create a new song with Lisa Gerrard called ‘Rising Of The Moon’, which was performed as the final encore of each show. By the time the tour finished in Chile in 2013, a strong affinity had begun to develop between the two of them and further opportunities to collaborate with each other resulted over subsequent years. In 2015, when Maxwell was asked to submit songs for the Bulgarian choir The Mystery of the Bulgarian Voices (Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares), he approached Gerrard to co-write material and travelled to Australia to work with her in her home studio. The pair came away with four new songs for that release, as well as the building blocks for this new venture together. Jules describes the introduction to James Chapman. "About a year later, over dinner in Sofia after a concert by the Bulgarian women, my publisher suggested to me that I work with James Chapman on completing the BURN songs. James had established a sound with his band MAPS, which also had big horizons at its core, and it seemed like an intriguing proposition to me."

              With Chapman joining the duo as producer, ideas began to be generated freely and over time a distinct sound for their work began to emerge. Their focus was to create a sound that was both euphoric and compelling, more inventive than what they had worked on separately in the past. From gentle beginnings, each track builds and intensifies, creating a hypnotic experience to listen to from start to finish.

              With Lisa remaining in Australia, Jules adding his keys and percussion from France, and James bringing new light to the sound from England, the three were literally worlds apart, but those worlds fused in the music. Recently, Jules Maxwell also released his debut solo album ‘Songs From The Cultural Backwater’, Lisa Gerrard received a Grammy nomination and returned to Dead Can Dance to release the group’s critically praised ninth studio full-length ‘Dionysus’, and James Chapman released MAPS 4th full-length album ‘Colours. Reflect. Time. Loss’. Stylistically, the new album ‘Burn’ is a diverse mix of electronica, alternative, cinematic soundscape and world music with hints of early Vangelis. Accumulatively, this is a stunning departure for all three of them.

              TRACK LISTING

              SIDE A
              1. Heleali (The Sea Will Rise)
              2. Noyalain (Burn)
              3. Deshta (Forever)
              4. Aldavyeem (A Time To Dance)

              SIDE B
              1. Orion (The Weary Huntsman)
              2. Keson (Until My Strength Returns)
              3. Do So Yol (Gather The Wind)

              BAR07, a double A side featuring an 11-minute mind bending rollercoaster by JEANS and the debut of Blond, a new moniker by Oceanic, delivering the perfect spring / summer track.

              "All Units We Have Shots Fired" deploys a definitive slant on UK techno; buzzing with ring modulation and flat-lined beats. Both stadium and basement friendly, it's a rawkus slice of new energy that'll captivate a young & up-fer-it crowd.

              "Bright Grass Bodies" shimmers with almost holographic properties, an enchanted piece which hovers above a trpytamine-forest spreading peace and love vibes to all that encounter iit.

              Mega.



              STAFF COMMENTS

              says: Two proper sick pieces in very contrasting style. One's a heads-down, 3 pills deep techno rampage; the other, high on tryptamines, sat in your favourite rainforest retreat. erm, YES PLEASE!

              TRACK LISTING

              A1. JEANS - All Units We Have Shots Fired
              B1. Blond - Bright Grass Bodies

              Lost Girls

              Menneskekollektivet

                Norwegian duo Lost Girls, artist and writer Jenny Hval and multi-instrumentalist Håvard Volden, release their first album after collaborating for more than ten years. Volden has been playing regularly in Hval's live band for more than a decade, and their duo project goes back to an acoustic collaborative album from 2012, using the moniker Nude on Sand. Instead of resurrecting the previous band, Hval and Volden opted for a fresh start for their 2018 EP Feeling, taking nomenclatural inspiration from the 2006 graphic novel by writer Alan Moore and comics artist Melinda Gebbie.

                For their first LP, Hval and Volden booked an actual studio (Øra studios, Trondheim, Norway), which they had never done before. Recording sessions took place in March 2020, even if they felt like the material wasn’t really ready for recording. This left a lot to improvisation, and so Menneskekollektivet was created in-between set structures and the energy of collective exploration.

                Perhaps this is what makes Menneskekollektivet unique: The quality of trying something, to see if the structures fit. In a way this is a more physical version of what Hval has been exploring lyrically over the past decade in her solo work. The title is Norwegian and translates to human collective, which adds to the feeling of a recording made as part of a strange, improvised performance project.

                The music flickers; between club beats and improvised guitar textures; between spoken word and melodic vocal textures; between abstract and harmonic synth lines. Throughout the piece, Volden’s guitar and Hval’s voice come across as equals, wandering, wondering, meandering. Sharing the space.

                The writing process began with short, more concise forms, but then Volden brought in experiments with seasick synth loops and drum machines, and the work went off on a longer durational tangent, inspired by chance and intuition. This allowed for an unfinished, raw feel, and the song structures and words were expanded and improvised in the studio. Hval says: “There are lots of late night ideas at work, begun as half-asleep, slack vocal takes on top of something really strange Håvard has sent me. We both record before we know what we’re actually doing.”


                TRACK LISTING

                1. Menneskekollektivet
                2. Losing Something
                3. Carried By Invisible Bodies

                4. Love, Lovers
                5. Real Life

                Limited to 250 copies, hand stamped.

                Ace! La Beauté Du Négatif welcomes Qeta, best kept secret from xxxxxx. 5 trackers from electronica to jungle via braindance. There's a subtle but definite uprising of this hybridized IDM; which takes cues from AFX, Autechre & Boards of Canada whilst utilizing the most hi-tech modules and equipment around. Brainwaltzera, alongside much of the FireScope roster know this formular brilliantly, but it's especially pleasing to see La Beauté Du Négatif get in on the action. Superb, from start to finish; it's refreshing to see this sound invigorated with such enthusiasm and nuance. A breathtaking release - you simply must check it out! 


                STAFF COMMENTS

                says: Top drawer braindance music here on the exquisite La Beauté Du Négatif - one of my favourite labels of the last decade. Taking in vintage BOC and AFX blueprints but psychedelicizing them for modern consumption. Superb.

                TRACK LISTING

                A1. Annexx
                A2. Go With The Rush
                B1. Llexi
                B2. I Know You (Qeta Rmx)
                B3. By Dawns Early Light

                Seefeel

                (Ch-Vox) Redux - 2021 Reissue

                Seefeel’s third studio album was recorded for Richard D James and Grant Wilson-Claridge’s Rephlex label, as as a return favour for two remixes Aphex Twin (a huge fan of the group) did in their Too Pure period. This is the first time it has been available on vinyl since 1996 and adds an extra LP of bonus material, mastered from original DAT transfers by Stefan Betke aka Pole. Comes housed in a new gatefold sleeve by the Designers Republic.

                “Mark Clifford and his mates have moved through labels like Astralwerks and Warp before landing at the front door of the Richard James label Rephlex, and along the way they have scattered some wonderful pearls. For (CH-VOX), it's an especially lush match of aesthetics -- sort of a condensed version of the Aphex Twin landmark record, Selected Ambient Works II. Picking up at the tail end of Seefeel's last album, Succour, we once again hear "Utreat," a dark meditation of phrases that makes Darren Seymour's bass sound like an electric piano, or is it Clifford's electric piano that sounds like a bass? Sarah Peacock's dreamy vocals hover almost out of earshot, and possibly her guitar is plugged in somewhere, too.

                It's difficult to say with many of their songs what instrument we're hearing, since treatments and effects play such a major role in production. The song "E-HIX2" breathes like a cluster of bleak skyscrapers with an extremely ambient take on feedback, and the title cut, "CH-VOX," is stark, patient, and ominous -- an abandoned submarine frozen in ice. "Hive" (with wonderful vocal loop effects) has Clifford revisiting his somewhat limited palette of percussion -- a piece that teeters between beauty and agitation, and an unfortunate weak spot for the album. The album closes with "Net," which is nothing short of masterpiece -- a journey, a drive through wet streets at midnight, and a finale so captivating you'll want to hear it twice -- somewhat postponing the disappointment that the album is only 33 minutes long.” 


                TRACK LISTING

                A1. Utreat (Complete)
                A2. E-hix²
                A3. Ch-vox C1. E-hix 5

                B1. Hive
                B2. Ashdecon
                B3. Net D1. Avatar

                C2. E-hix 4
                C3. Evio

                D2. E-hix 3
                D3. Ashime 

                Seefeel

                St / Fr / Sp - 2021 Reissue

                "St / Fr / Sp" compiles two non-album EPs that Seefeel recorded for Warp in 1994, "Starethrough" and "Fracture / Tied", alongside a rare Autechre remix of “Spangle” and the unreleased Transition Mix of “Starethrough”. Housed in a gatefold sleeve conceived by The Designers Republic.

                'Seefeel's output on Warp delved more into abstraction; often containing a pervading dark and oppressive atmosphere. Although featuring these menacing sensibilities, 1994's "Starethrough EP" retained some of the astral lightheartedness of "Quique"; a track like "Spangle" could be called anything but menacing with it's twinkling coruscations of melody and Sarah's ethereal vocal contribution. The EP to follow, "Fracture / Tied", was almost entirely beat-driven with only rudimentary hints of melody.' - Resident Advisor


                TRACK LISTING

                A1. Starethrough
                A2. Air Eyes

                B1. Spangle
                B2. Lux1 D1. Spangle (Autechre Remix)

                C1. Fracture (EP Version)
                C2. Tied

                D2. Starethrough (Transition Mix) 

                Seefeel

                Succour - 2021 Reissue

                Seefeel’s second studio album and their debut for Warp. This expanded 3LP edition is the first time it has been available on vinyl since original release and adds an extra LP of bonus material, mastered from original DAT transfers by Stefan Betke aka Pole.

                “On Seefeel’s 1993 debut album, Quique, the British quartet navigated a course between shoegaze and ambient dub—but by 1995, the electronic undercurrents of their sound had carried them to a very different place. Maybe it was the influence of Aphex Twin, whose remixes had honed in on the clean-lined rhythmic skeleton lurking beneath the group’s atmospheric swirl: The rolling, distorted drums of Succour’s “Fracture” and “Vex” are straight out of his playbook, and the beatless, bookending tracks “Meol” and “Utreat” both evoke Selected Ambient Works Vol. II at its most ethereal.

                While the album’s textures and titles are often reminiscent of Autechre’s Amber, which came out the year before on Warp, Seefeel never entirely cast off their post-rock roots; squint through the fog of songs like “Extract” and “Cut,” and you can just barely pick out the familiar silhouettes of guitar, bass, drums, and microphone against the murk. Still, there’s no mistaking the common cause they make with the era’s knob-twisters and brain-dancers. Despite the echoes of other touchstones of the time (“Gatha” sounds like Massive Attack being dragged deep into an underwater cavern), it’s a singular album that has no equivalent—a sound so elemental, it’s no wonder the Designers Republic chose the cover they did.” – Philip Sherburne (#30 in the Pitchfork list of 50 greatest IDM albums)

                “Driving electronic percussion, dubby basslines and obtuse, paranoid guitar melodies abound. Sarah's voice sounds synthetic and almost alien in the barren, lunar atmosphere's that 'Succour' evokes.” – Resident Advisor


                TRACK LISTING

                A1. Meol
                A2. Extract D1. Cut
                B1. When Face Was Face
                B2. Fracture
                B3. Gatha E1. As One
                C1. Ruby-Ha
                C2. Rupt
                C3. Vex F1. Meol 2
                D2. Utreat
                D3. Tempean
                E2. As If
                E3. As Well
                E4. As Track
                E5. As Link
                E6. As Such
                F2. Rupt (Cut Mix)
                F3. Fractions 2
                F4. Meol 3
                F5. Monastic
                F6. Burned

                St. Vincent

                Daddy's Home

                  Fifth studio album by the American musician, produced by pop producer and long-term collaborator Jack Antonoff and featuring the single 'Pay Your Way in Pain'. 'I was inspired by the classic records of the '70s. Stevie, Sly, Stones, Steely Dan, Chords, Groove. The days when sophisticated harmony and rhythm didn't sound heady - they just sounded, and felt good. Lots of guitar. But warm sounds, not distortion and chaos. Hopefully a turn nobody will see coming' - Annie Clark.

                  TRACK LISTING

                  CD Tracklisting:
                  01. Pay Your Way In Pain
                  02. Down And Out Downtown
                  03. Daddy’s Home
                  04. Live In The Dream
                  05. The Melting Of The Sun
                  06. Humming Interlude 1
                  07. The Laughing Man
                  08. Down
                  09. Humming Interlude 2
                  10. Somebody Like Me
                  11. My Baby Wants A Baby
                  12. …At The Holiday Party
                  13. Candy Darling
                  14. Humming Interlude 3

                  Vinyl Tracklisting:
                  The Interlude Tracks Are Not Credited On The Vinyl, Although The Interludes Do Still Appear On The Disc Itself
                  01. Pay Your Way In Pain
                  02. Down And Out Downtown
                  03. Daddy’s Home
                  04. Live In The Dream
                  05. The Melting Of The Sun
                  06. The Laughing Man
                  07. Down
                  08. Somebody Like Me
                  09. My Baby Wants A Baby
                  10. …At The Holiday Party
                  11. Candy Darling

                  Alfie Templeman

                  Forever Isn’t Long Enough

                    English singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Alfie Templeman follows up last year's Happiness in Liquid Form EP with new album Forever Isn't Long Enough. 

                    TRACK LISTING

                    1. Shady
                    2. Forever Isn't Long Enough
                    3. Hideaway
                    4. Wait, I Lied
                    5. Everybody's Gonna Love Somebody
                    6. Film Scene Daydream
                    7. To You
                    8. One More Day

                    In 2006, the musical landscape was very different; there was no streaming, “shazam" was a word used by magicians, and "all-access” was not granted to the general public. Social media, as we know it, was in its infancy and today’s constant digital feed of interruptions, notifications, refreshes and “likes” didn't yet exist. Those with a thirst for the overlooked regions of the record store had to quench themselves in the climes of the online world's music blogs, and while that digital community was surely expanding, NYC’s www.lovefingers.org was something different. Not a blog but a daily unfolding mix — no opinions, reviews, or backstories were coupled with the music, no full albums or submissions from the outside — it was a mysterious watering hole in the burgeoning digital desert where rogue tracks from Wally Badarou rubbed shoulders with those of Holger Czukay, the drama of Sylvester juxtaposed with the quirkiness of Hosono, and countless other coveted artists’ unearthed gems melted in one pot, a digital space where $1 thrift store scores could easily breathe the same dusty air as cosmic holy grails, oddball psychedelics and proto-electronica b-sides comfortably cohabited with $300 private-press folk rarities. With 1 track per day, Andrew “Lovefingers” Hogge created a truly democratic and educated selection of music for our aural pleasure, and labelled them ‘Fingertracks' (numbered 001-999).

                    This was before most things we now take for granted were common on our dancefloors, radio shows or live streams. Those ubiquitous Euro Pop dubs, unclassics that aficionados play at the wrong speed, or private gems that have since been reissued to the moon and back? They very probably popped up on our collective radars via the medium of www.lovefingers.org first. Rightfully so, what started as a well-kept secret, became a go-to resource and mark of quality among enthusiasts, diggers, DJs, musicians and producers around the globe — the genre-bending mentality in turn re-coined the term “selector” — and inspired a generation the world over to delve further into record shelves, undoubtably contributing hugely to the wondrous, multi-faceted and open-minded musical language we now all speak fluently. While it remained niche, at its peak, www.lovefingers.org had upwards of 100K music freaks turning up daily, and ignited a global musical dialogue between people that were yet to be connected by today’s social technology. The site received countless letters of appreciation from rural kids with no access to record stores, acclaimed DJs, film directors, fashion houses, forgotten artists who were thrilled to feature among unexpected peers, soldiers who diligently tuned-in direct from their call of duty, even heroes of sample-scavenging culture like Coldcut who applauded, “…it just goes to show, when you think you’ve heard it all, you can always dig deeper.” The community around Lovefingers’ site was a call-to-action, gathering analogous minds and inviting them all to the same party, and on New Years Day 2010, after 999 Fingertracks and a plethora of (now classic) mixes, the site made a final post stating, “That's all folks!” The collective energy pivoted into the ESP Institute, a record label and art platform to champion new artists who emerged from this foundational community and as a catalyst to push the musical dialogue forward. Now, as the ESP Institute approaches its 10-year anniversary, we revisit the significant role www.lovefingers.org played in shaping where we are today.

                    'Fingertracks Vol : 1' is a snapshot of aural delights that were on offer to those of the leftfield persuasion, all who discovered the site and tuned-in for their daily shot of sonics proper — a lovingly selected handful of records that re-introduce the story of Andrew’s most influential and essential music resource. The track list is classic Lovefingers, an insight into the free-flowing nature of the daily Fingertracks, context-free but connected through creative threads and energies — lo-fi loner jams brush up alongside sleazed-out Italo powerhouses, Greek new age obscurities tussle against overlooked Hawkwind-related cuts — nuggets that may be more known to the heads now, but whose initial excavation can be accredited to Lovefingers’ site, and are essential to its story nonetheless. Rumor has it that this is merely the first volume in a series, so as it turns out, and gladly so, “That’s not all folks!”

                    STAFF COMMENTS

                    says: As far as I'm concerned, Fingertracks was the most influential blog..and it didn't have a single bit of journalistic content - just an endless supply of outrageous tunes from all times and genres. Total rarities, DJ favourites and daily discoveries for every head on the planet. In the years since, each of the tracks on this FIRST VOLUME (YES!) has become an algorithm classic, but you've never had them all in one place, from the man who first helped us discover them. This isn't a collector's item or exercise in nostalgia, this is one of the best sonic selections you'll have the pleasure to own.

                    TRACK LISTING

                    A1. Lovefingers - Intro
                    A2. The Chequers - Theme One
                    A3. Lifetones - Good Side
                    A4. Rick Cuevas - The Birds
                    A5. Data - Data Plata
                    A6. Hotlegs - Today
                    B1. Jo Squillo Eletrix - Avventurieri (Dance Mix)
                    B2. Captain Mustard - Quiet Move
                    B3. D.E. - Full Moon (Lovefingers Edit)
                    C1. Nuno Canavarro - Blu Terra
                    C2. Electronic System - Skylab
                    D1. Eddie Callahan - Santa Cruz Mountains
                    D2. Dave Brock - Spirits
                    D3. Florian Poser - Winds


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