MAGIC MIX

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

WEEK STARTING 19 Apr

Genre pick of the week Cover of Saving Drum (Bullion Mixes) by Thomas Leer.
Hot on the heels of their Hawkwind reissue, Emotional Rescue continue their vague reish/rework series this week by turning their attention to London's synthpop, new wave and bedroom pop prince Thomas Leer.
Signing to Cherry Red in the early 80s, he released the heralded '4 Movements' in 1981 and followed with 'All About You' in 1982, and it is from these 2 EPs that this release is sourced. The release starts with "Saving Grace" from the latter, a long famous Cosmic classic, its mid-tempo, spacey, lifting repetition is the perfect soundtrack for those Baldelli trips straight to the stars.
This is backed with "Tight As A Drum", a quintessential Leer production, where Teutonic drums is overlaid with sequencers and synth tones to elevate the song to some kind of disorientating outer-dimensional dub, while his lucid, spoken word vocals instill degradation and reinvention.
Asking Bullion to offer his own take on these two songs was the perfect pairing. A revered artist in his own time, the warmth and depth of his versions takes the originals to his own inner world; sampling, rewiring, reprogramming, resigning and replaying. An EP for the floor, the head and the heart.

STAFF COMMENTS

Patrick says: I effin love Thomas Leer, so I was delighted when I saw this one in the pipeline. "Saving Grace" is a total cosmic classic, all A-grade synth chug and soaring pads, while "Tight As A Drum" is a crazy, kosmische inspired gem perfect for late in the session. Reinterpreted here by modern day maverick Bullion as well as in their original form, the tracks sound every bit as vital as ever.

A brand new studio album from Gorillaz titled The Now Now will be released by Parlophone Records on 29th June.

The Now Now is 11 all-new songs from the World’s Most Successful Virtual Act, produced by Gorillaz, with James Ford and Remi Kabaka, and recorded in London, in February this year.

The album sessions for The Now Now saw the band largely eschewing guest stars, taking it back to the core creative crew: blue-haired, sweet-natured dreamer 2D on vocals; whip-smart Japanese badass Noodle on guitar; not forgetting Brooklyn-born philosopher and the meat–behind-the-beat Russel Hobbs on drums. And with Murdoc Niccals temporarily indisposed, bass duties on the new album have been taken up by erstwhile Gangreen Gang member Ace.


FORMAT INFORMATION

Picture Disc Info: Limited picture disc edition.

LP Info: Heavyweight black vinyl 12” LP in spined sleeve with printed inner bag and download card.

CD Info: 11-track CD in jewelcase with 12-page booklet on gloss art paper.

LP Box Set Info: Deluxe Vinyl LP Box Set - 12” x 12” rigid board box set, with a lenticular image on lid, containing:
Heavyweight blue vinyl 12” LP, in spined sleeve with printed inner bag. The blue vinyl is exclusive to the box set. 52-page booklet, replicating 2-D’s original studio notebook including album lyrics. 4 x 12” x 12” art prints, 6 x 1” pin badges mounted on card and download card.

Cin Cin’s fourteenth release sees the DFA label mainstay, The Juan MacLean, paired up with Zombies In Miami. Nods to British synth pop can be heard on lead cut “Time Out Of Joint”, with its jubilant and optimistic melodies tied to a robust drum machine groove, whilst Juan’s second contribution, “Everywhere At Once” unfurls with a carnival of sound and a spring-like tone that’s perfectly fitting, as bright keys and synth brass tumble forward in this colourful triumph of a track.

Zombies In Miami have been omnipresent on the scene for quite some time now, releasing their infectious music on labels such as CORRESPONDANT, Love On The Rocks and Futureboogie. “Lotus” is some serious business; heavy cowbell hits and a rasping arp riff that packs a punch, it’s production sheen straight out of the 80s soundtrack books! “Dance Of Gopis” has techno chops at the heart of its chugging and dubwise arrangement; it’s a bold cut that features swinging guitar riffs, walls of synths and towers of noise for a truly splendid closing moment on this release.


For their sixth release London based record label and clubnight Snap, Crackle & Pop return with another slice of the nu-EBM and Kraut influenced electro & techno sounds that are coming to define their label. The latest release comes from Niv Ast and it serves as a follow up to his appearance on this summer's Relish compilation. The EP leads with an ice cold slab of electro-punk aggression in the form of "Quebec / Makolet" which gets the remix treatment from previous collaborators Khidja. The Romanian duo strip the percussion back for the dancefloor and tease out the track's darker side with more than a hint of acidic malevolence. "Disco Monroe" sees some darkwave French electro ride the record's grooves into a pitch black, popper-reeking sex dungeon. Optimo Music's Mr TC rounds off the EP with his unmistakably leftfield vision to give the track a dark, tropical re-imagining.

O Yuki Conjugate

Insect-Talk - Inc. Tolouse Low Trax & Howes Remixes

Following releases by Trevor Jackson and Jack Latham (Jam City), this new 12" on Utter features a rare alternate 'Dry' version of legendary post-industrial group O Yuki Conjugate's "Insect-Talk" from their 1995 album "Equator". Alongside this long lost treasure we get contemporary versions by Tolouse Low Trax (Salon Des Amateurs), Howes (Cong Burn / NTS Radio) and OYC themselves.

"Insect-Talk" is pioneering in that in 1995 it seems to have discovered the entire sonic landscape that much of the modern entheogenic and esoteric producers are occupying now. 'Rainforest'-aligned and shamanically guided, this is evocative music from another dimension but seems completely normalized in our current neo-hallucinatory, augmented reality.

German electro-goth Tolouse Low Trax is the first obvious choice for remix action; his version almost sounding like a continuation of the original's theme, his creeping, step-sequenced approach lending an even eerier edge to this already tense workout.

Local lad Howes drizzles plenty of Mancunian plasma over the stems; conjuring up a thoroughly unique version that is both nestled in shamanic and science fiction realms; if witchcraft exists on Mars; then this is what the medicine men and women are listening to whilst they brew their potions! Finally, O Yuki themselves offer up a re-vamp of the track; emphasizing its future vision through forward>>reversed paraphrasing, celestial SFX and a minimalist, ambient approach.

This is amazing! Difficult to find words, impossible not to be captivated....


FORMAT INFORMATION

Ltd 12" Info: 12" + insert

Calling all glue sniffers and mirror kissers, Duca Bianco unleash their first 12" featuring freak-beat, fucked up and scuzzy DJ edits by Smagghe & Cross, Tom Bolas, Hanoben & ADSX and Schmoltz, a fine collection of kerazies I'm sure you'll agree. 
Kicking us off are post punk loving electronic heroes Smagge & Cross with the weird, warped and fuzzy wave of "Drug Of A Nation", an unorthodox anthem critiquing the perils of square-eyed subserviance. Well whacked out but still a sing-a-long, this is gonna hit hard with adventurous floors. Next up, Tom Bolas reaches deep into the bag to hits us with a fast paced and fucked up cover of AWB's "Pick Up The Pieces" topped with a robotised schlager vocal and the occasional scream - insane and irresistible I reckon. Over on the flip, Hanoben and ADSX rock us with a VHS saturated space disco hit, extended and upended for the underground, while Schmoltz comes through with an end of night / afternoon groover for the Balearic crowd in the form of "Starnight". Jazzy acoustic guitar, Stevie styled chorus and plenty of feels - 5 sandals out of 5.


STAFF COMMENTS

Patrick says: More wavy weirdshit from the Duca Bianco camp here as Smagghe & Cross, Tom Bolas, Hanoben / ADSX and Schmoltz offer post punk, daft disco, cosmic and Balearic rerubs respectively.

New release from La Beauté Du Négatif - Italian camp of maverick hardwired electronix and far flung leftfield dance music. Now up to their forth 'Various' EP (and tenth release in total), this label has found its way into the more discerning Mancunians' DJ bags over its short but succinct existence.

Kicking off with the legendary Italian duo Monomorph (aka D'Arcangelo) with an epic & rare ambient track released only in CD in 1996 on an obscure compilation produced by the defunct Italian label Disturbance Records (!!!! - yes guys you're right to be excited! - ed). "Rystal" is nothing short of genius; harnessing a spiritual energy as it carefully deploys analogue synth lines and a gentle pulse before decorating with a vintage, stoned breakbeat. The enigmatic Brainwaltzera are drafted in for this momentous occasion - contributing a typically fractured, future-gazing soundscape of discord, harmony and rhythm - ace! Onto side B and The Jaffa Kid's "Phos Harbinger" is one of the most arresting and frenetic slices of pots, pans and pads you're likely to hear all year - and then in flies this step sequenced B-line I honestly think even Autechre would be jealous of! So good.

SSIEG and Rawmance remain, concluding the EP with a heavenly slice of downbeat ("Sogno In Bb") and a head-turning exercise in alien chatter / interstellar flux ("Mondonotte...") respectively. Totally recommended. 


STAFF COMMENTS

Matt says: The Jaffa Kid - "Opener" >>> This is ridiculous! As is most of the EP. More essential listening from this maverick Italian firm. TIP.


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