house . techno . electronica . ambient . neo-classical


Genre pick of the week Cover of Ashram by Levi Love & Daddy Molete.
Herrre's Levi - MCR's #1 nicest, most enthusiastic and downright charismatic house head / flamboyant DJ extraordinaire and now, label owner and contributing artiste! - is there nothing this man can't do? (he also has a side line in stand up! - ed).

Anyway, having made waves with their debut record, "Applebush" that came in at the end of last year, the small but perfectly formed team have been spreading the good word, touring, performing and ensuring even the farthest flungs of the record buying world heard the release - resulting in a rapturous global reception

Named after one of the few remaining, truly bohemian spots in Ibiza, "The Ashram EP" sees Levi take the reins, dropping two tracks and featuring a ridiculously good guest vocal on the B-side.

"Ashram" begins, gently fluttering in like a butterfly as a relaxed percussion ushers in low droning bass and a cerebral pad sound. It's unforced and effortless, showing a poise and sophistication that belies Levi's somewhat recent entry into record production. It should bring back fond memories of listening to Henrik Schwarzand Âme as the Sun rises or falls over your favourite tropical party spot. Majestic!

Side B stems from an afterparty which took place 7 years ago, during which he contacted a very talented vocalist Daddy Molete to narrate that night, in retrospect. It has taken all these years to find an instrumental that did justice to the vocal; in the process converting the whole piece into a New York dub-infused Afro house track, like it was cherry picked from Yoruba and Sacred Rhythm Music's catalogues! Honestly, this is as an arresting a piece of house music as you're likely to hear all year - hats off Levi you've nailed it here mate!

Mas O Menos was established in 2015, with the intention to encourage cross-pollination of Manchester and South African culture and music. 'Celebrating a milestone birthday in the serene and almost hypnotic surroundings of Sunset Ashram, Ibiza, gave birth to the title of this EP. It was constructed using the melodies of a struggle song I used to sing with my father; his passing was indicative of a significant point in my life. Chandra's meaning of Ashram is exactly that: a step in the journey of life. To retain it in musical form is not only meditative but therapeutic. As a psychiatrist by day this is something that resonates with me - and it is my intention to transfer this restorative sentiment to the listener.'


Matt says: Yes you know it. Brother Levi returns with his cult imprint and it's a steaming, late night house affair that democratizes any dancefloor!

Running Back kick off their re-issue angle with a holy grail from the Final Cut catalogue. Dating back to 1992, Alex M is actually an alter ego of Mateo & Matos, presumably dedicating this alias to Eddie Matos' brother who passed the year this was released. Highly, highly sought after, Running Back have kept the track-listing exactly as originally released, simply changing the artwork and giving it a subtle remaster. Classic, warm, early nineties vibes are order of the day here, truly evocative of the time with rounded B-lines, dreamy pads and shuffled snare patterns. Top drawer stuff, previously difficult to acquire and fetching top dollar on 2nd hand markets. The perfect introduction to Running Back Double Copy then! Recommended.

Jimmy Asquith follows up his massive dancefloor-crushing solo debut "The Conditioning Track", with a four track techno-house-bass EP that shimmers with London-via-West Yorkshire influences.

"Never Alone" grabs your by the neck and proceeds to hurtle you around the mainroom at a break-neck speed, it's rampant techno vibrations sure to go down a storm at the more hedonistic cities like Glasgow, MCR & Rotterdam. In contrast, the A1, "Hard Skippin'" deploys some well placed garage business to open up the EP in frenetic form.

B-side tracks "Hot Mix" and "NRG Mix" both impart a sense of urgent late night energy, lost-in-the-smoke and loving it. It's not time to go home yet that's for sure. 


Sil says: Killer rough house attack here. You will like to hear this on a Saturday night in some obscure basement on the outskirts of your city or town. This is not mainstream sugar coated stuff. This is what you need to keep it real!

Baptisma is 55 years old, lives in Nagoya and runs an art space and concert venue called Spacio Rita. He has never before released any music. In the hot and humid Japanese summer of 2016 YPY and I played a show at Sapcio Rita, Shintaro was DJing and Baptisma played a short show, too. It was impulsive and driving while somewhat earthy and dark, buzzing with dense energy like a jungle yet spacious like the hall of the mountain king.

Baptisma's powerful sound creates strange places - as inviting as shady.
I was captivated. Baptisma liked the idea of a release and we embarked on that long journey that finally led to DISK16. Along the trip we proudly welcomed Hodge from Bristol as a stowaway. His unexpected remix well rounding this square project. Finally Maria Mendes from Lisboa served as our beacon, providing a simple and beautiful jacket for this neat release!' - Florian Meyer / Don’t DJ.

Yea man. More tripped out shamanic bizniz for your next gong bath / mushroom session; very big in Todmorden right now! 


Matt says: One of those rare instances when the music's as good as the story! Forian Meyer on an inspired A&R tip here, bringing into focus the majestic sounds of Baptisma!

5 Track EP from Miami's Greg Beato (L.I.E.S., Apron, Russian Torrent Versions). Really dope and varied stuff on here. Big TIP! The artist says 'Heavy bass sounds ready for the subs in your car (if you have 'em), the club, or your name brand headphones. You decide!'

It's not just subs though, Beato's circuit fried drums snap, crackle and pop as per, while it's menacing, metallic washes slowly converge on the tracks like a growling industrial malice.

Mega stuff from this maverick producer - recommended! 

2nd EP from tenebrous Parisian named Beige. This, the 5th Global Warming EP opens with the deeply psychedelic and tectonic crawl of "Unboxing". Packing concentric acid lines, heavy gated drums, worm-hole like fx swirls and a mind melting aesthetic Beige makes his impact felt from the very beginning! Esoteric star Don't DJ contributes a suitably wild and wicked remix, letting a widget off under the stems and frothing the whole thing up with an injected dose of nitrogen. Elements drift in and out of time as the Berlin producer attempts to tear the whole thing apart through electromagnetic static discharge - has to been heard to be believed!

"Ghost Producer" opens side B with something equally as noxious - technoid beat patterns and helicopter blade synths cutting through a thick digital soundbed with claustrophobic hammer drums with plenty of Belgian-inspired throb. Acid Arab deploys a more skewiff rhythmic template to the theme; along with winding Arabic lead lines and a soaring intensity. Blinding stuff here every single track a full on immersive experience in its own right. Recommended!

Taken from the well-received “Comedic Afrika” CD, which was Produced and Compiled by Joaquin Joe Claussell, Cosmicdelic Afrika PT1 is a collection of (demos) that Joaquin has been crafting in the studio working on in his spare time. The Vinyl format PT1 consists mostly of extended Edits and Overdubs from the CD. The Part 2 of the series will feature the original Joaquin Claussell compositions. PT 2 is stated for a release that will follow shortly after the Cosmicdelic Afrika PT1 release. Similar to the previously released CD, the vinyl version will include musical jewels such as Amadou et Mariam’s “Bara” which is no longer available on Vinyl and going for big bucks on the open market - that is if you can find a copy. So a second chance has just come up for you. The hidden surprise here is the understated 'Moudilo' by Railband. What a groovy edit this one is.Worth the entire EP just for that track. Do not let it escape. They do not come this good often enough.


Sil says: Hefty release by the prolific Claussell. Four edits of the highest calibre easily standing out of the crowd. You have the very good Amadoum & Mariam track but you also have, what is best edit of the month Railband's 'Mouodilo'. So groovy. Get this pronto!

Coil Presents Black Light District

A Thousand Lights In A Darkened Room

For those who shine darkly......

During the transitional period in which Coil’s primary leadership, Peter “Sleazy” Christopherson and John Balance, reorganized their creative direction by taking on new membership in the group through their inclusion of Drew McDowall, Coil took a drastic turn towards the metaphysical unknown.Employing the subtle handiwork of Coil’s“real life”members, as well as the cleverlyguised aliases and spiritual collaborators, the band chose to filter their identity through a the nome de guerre, Black Light District,setting the precedent of Coil’s future exploration of other worldy influence.

Recorded during the Winter of 1995/96, Black Light District reflects more on their formal avant-garde pursuits and academic interests rather than their industrial pedigree resume. Starting off with an obvious nod to John Cage with their introductory “Unprepared Piano”, the tone is prepared in exactly the same way... unpredictable. Conceptually abstract, Black Light District shows Coil’s old guard disregarding the pop rhythms found on previous albums, such as Love Secret Domain,and fully embracing their experimental electronic trajectory. Subtle patterns of looping melancholy and malaise are placed delicately underneath ghostly electronic timbre. Approaching their creative method as something from the beyond, another realm in which sounds blur and performers seemingly appear from the ether.

Dais Records announces the official reissue of "Coil presents Black Light District -A Thousand Lights in a Darkened Room". Remastered by engineer Josh Bonati and supervised by Coil's Drew McDowall, the double LP vinyl release is packaged in a beautiful matte 24pt stock gatefold jacket Also available on digipack CD with booklet and digital.


2xColoured LP Info: Limited edition of 500 on TRANSLUCENT YELLOW.

2xLtd LP Info: Limited edition of 500 on BLACK VINYL.

2xLtd LP includes MP3 Download Code.

Omena is Finnish for apple. It's also a record label set up by Tobias Lidstrom aka Tooli, a DJ who also co-runs Local Talk Records and One Offs. For the label's second outing they bring us the simple, effective and downright deadly delights of Mella Dee. The producer serves up the perfect sountrack built for basements, dimmed lights and late nights. Mella Dee's solo sound has evolved from a true passion for all things garage, a dedication to hip hop, combined with a love for house music which was heavily influenced by the darkness of UK funky and dubstep.
Title track 'Estate' slams heavyweight beats four to the floor while swinging the drums for a UKG attack. Hefty! As you'd hope from a track called 'Warehouse', we get retro rave touches over more of those solid house beats. Things don't let up on the EP closer 'Cut 'Em Off' as the snare rattles and the acid bass throb is so large you'll itching to spin the track on a mega soundsystem.

DJ Ciderman is back with four special edits for your all nite discotheque! Look, it takes a keen ear, intrepid digging and a deft hand to create an edits record that even begins to pique our interest these days, but Ciderman may well be just the man to do it!

Skirting between house, disco and beatdown, but keeping the vibe alive and kicking with tight arrangements, solid mixing / mastering and engrossing source material, it's hard to find a duff moment across the whole EP!

Recommended if you ever saw Theo, Moodymann or Pittman between 2002 - 2010 and thought it was the best thing you ever saw. Funky, soulful, bumpy fuckin' shit for the clurb and the car ride home. Mega! 

Seriously smooth vibes from DJ Clea who brings the perfect mix of melodies and percussions on this second release from Study Records. Flip the record for a techno leaning remix by Stockholm underground royalty Samo DJ.

"Fiero" is undeniably fresh and tropical - so much so I'm already predicted numerous plays at next year's Gottwood festival - it suits that garden environment so much. Multi-textured and decorated with multi-fractal melodies it radiates a synthetic kindness and warmth that welcomes the rapid advancement of humankind with an optimistic, technologically focused smile.

Samo DJ isn't one to shy away from the future, and his remix grabs the stems by the short n curlies before bundling them into the back of a nearby DeLorean and heading straight to the year 2022. Gliding synths, wobbly subs, tight AF drums and a driving mood ensure that while we're busy populating new star clusters and warring with neighboring planets, the poor souls left on our decaying sphere will have summat to dance too. 

Fast-rising Swedish producer DJ Different steps up to the Lobster main label plate with a five-track whopper of a rave EP that skirts its way from the Orion Nebula to the very edges of the Oort Cloud. That is a quite a distance, folks. I love space and science so I know they are pretty far apart.

Blazing a trail of genres whilst keeping firmly in the orbit of a mood-thick, bass-heavy and rhythmic sound & programming palette; Different brings to the fore fuzzing interstellar ambient, Ilian Tape-esque heaving non-4/4 techno, skittering London jungle, RNB-infused washes of synth and breaks, and soulful, slow-lulling electro. Gosh... can you digest all that? It covers a pretty varied number of genres with tons of gusto!


Sil says: A flashback to 90s rave aesthetics is guaranteed with this record. It has a certain reverb feel to it that easily makes it big room fodder. In a good way that is. Standout choice for me is the ambient one on B2. Beautiful! Now the question everyone wanted to ask... Is DJq Different that different to the rest of us? Buy this and you will find out!


Neptune's Lair

    Originally released on Tresor back in 99, Drexciya's debut LP "Neptune's Lair" sent waves through the techno cognoscenti and wiped the floor with everything else released at the time. Thanks to the heavy shroud of mystery the group wore with pride, details behind the production of the record are scarce, but rumour has it that Stinson created this masterpiece single handedly having split with Donald at some time in the previous year. The album opens with the moody chant and blurred tongues of "Temple Of Dos De Aqua", immediately transporting us into the deep waters the Drexciyans call home. From this threshold we're begin our journey to the heart of their world on the electro rhythm and crystalline synths of "Andreaen Sand Dunes". Stinson balances the deep and metallic bassline with the pattering of hi hats while the sounds of submerged transports powering down reverberate through the dark. "Running Out Of Space" takes a dizzying ride through machine funk, careering from eddy to whirlpool while a Parliament bassline rips through the lower frequencies. As the album plays on, Stinson incorporates echoes of first wave techno, boogie, sci fi noir, John Carpenter sequences and cosmic funk into the Drexciyan lexicon, blending all these ingredients together into a cohesive narrative. The result is an immersive listen, the sonic equivalent of an hour in an isolation tank, floating free in the trippy waters of the Drexciyan dreamscape. 

    Analoguish vibes all over 'Natural World'. Keeping things simple to high effect. Casio keyboard style yet that bassline is sooo good. Tasty!
    '6400 Block' keeps the analogue feel present but a bit more restrained. The beat makes you think we are dealing with a house track but are we really? It works in mysterous ways this one - wait for the keys to come in. 
    'Going Away' is arguably the most dancefloor oriented track on offer, however, it is a particular dancefloor we are talking about - it is my dancefloor! A very special one where only non-obvious dancefloor tracks are allowed. This one will make it to my playlist with its very playful cowbell and sumptuous melody. 
    'Carmina' takes us to the dark side. A bit more techy and cold with a basline that keeps the whole structure in check. The beatiful confetti that starts falling half way through this track is worth the entire EP. Oh boy, it is good. 
    A solid constrained techno, house, italo-ish release on offer for 'those who know' - whatever that means! Is anybody reading this?


    Sil says: Solid and sumptuous release with four very good tracks that cover an ample spectrum of melodic, soft and warm techno. Flirtations with italo and house are ever present here.

    Moving towards faster BPMs and with some fresh faces in tow Cong Burn's fourth 12" is as forward focused as ever, dropping imperative new technoid vibrations for the new school.

    A1 sees St Petersburg's Flaty follow up his Gost Zvuk 2xLP with some twisted electro on "Clearences" (sic). Buzzing synths and kinetic beats immediately grab your attention as this beast creeps in from out the recesses.

    Lack strips things back to a skeletal beat; metallic perc hits and detuned hats laying the framework for some cerebrum biting synthwork which comes in thru the latter half of the track.

    Chekov imparts a high degree of tension and drama on "First Thought" which pairs mechanized squeals with eerie pad sequences and robotic rhythms.

    Closing things out, Martin Stromstedt aka Martinou keeps us on the tips of our toes with the tentative skip of "Guide Pattern", not knowing whether or not a massive drops coming keeps the level of intrigue and excitement riding high right till the end of this teasing track.

    Expert stuff from this emergent Manc firm - most recommended!


    Matt says: Yes lads! ANOTHER sterling addition to our cutting edge music scene, Cong Burn can now be legitimately celebrated with four killer releases to date. Check!

    Alexis Georgopoulos / Jefre Cantu Ledesma

    Foreign Affairs - Inc. Woo & Felicia Atkinson Mixes

    Emotional Response close the year on a high with "Foreign Affairs" - a limited edition special remix 7-inch single featuring reworks from Alexis Georgopoulos & Jefre Cantu-Ledesma's "Fragments of A Season" album by Woo and Felicia Atkinson.
    Last year's ""Fragments of A Season"" represented a unique chapter in both artist's canon. Georgopoulos, who released the Arp album "Zebra" in June this year and Cantu-Ledesma, who released "On The Echoing Green" in October 2017 - both on Mexican Summer and to critical acclaim - wanted to stretch out and create a discrete work. A peripheral listen to "Fragments" revealed a resonant album of delicate, ambient vignettes, suggesting a Balearic take on Vini Reilly, Young Marble Giants and other poetically-minded, minimalistic post-punk era bands.
    The Brothers Ives aka Woo were a major influence on the album's makers and so AG and JCL are thrilled they've submitted a beautiful reworking of the album's "Marine". Whereas the original sounded like Marine Girls and The Gist getting together for a nice beach day jam, Woo's rework transforms it into pulsating track of glistening proportions. Percolating synths, some guitar and clarinet - the true classic, idiosyncratic Woo-ification - creates a woozy, romantic, impossible to categorize slice of Balearic meets dub atmospherics.

    If "Marine" is all midday sun, intoxicating and potently optimistic, Atkinson's remake represents the literal and figurative flip, bringing out the overcast dreaminess to "Cleo". Sounding like an outtake from a Rohmer film, or perhaps Cocteau Twins and Broadcast having a picnic in Biarritz, the version veers between abstraction, celluloid ambiguity and suggested narrative. Atkinson's reworking adds poetry of the tune (quite literally!) with her soft vocal under-gliding to perfection. Representing a temporary idyll, a meeting point where cobblestone streets lead to the sea. At nightfall, a discotheque heard in the distance. The morning mist burns off. Only such memories remain.

    After stealing the Piccadilly headlines with a wonderfully weird inaugural release from MB Jones, Zaltan (Antinote) and Pam's (cool as fuck) drop their second Drama release, this time from Céline Gillain. Here's what those two dudes had to say...
    "Bad Woman" can be seen as a mutant blend of everything that’s been produced by the music industry these last 30 years, from Cher’s delirious come-back in the 1990’s to the most embarrassing moments in Dance music (think Gabber and Happy Hardcore), blurring the frontier between “good” and “bad” taste, between commercial and alternative. Just like Cher’s Believe, Céline Gillain’s Bad Woman sometimes sounds like the music of a former diva who’s been through tough times, saw her expectations torn apart and came back to music with a bizarre testimony of her state of mind."


    Patrick says: Céline Gillain is most definitely an outlier, and "Bad Woman" pretty much flirts with outsider art...but...HAS TUNES. This is the most accessible bit of pop experimentalism you'll hear all year, and it has serious emotional, conceptual and lyrical clout! It's like hearing a modern Laurie Anderson who's tired of your bullshit.

    Local hero, production whizz and Piccadilly regular Loz Goddard doing his thing here on Church White, more gee than you can handle. Not only is Loz an effin house hero, he's one funny mother fucker, and "Gluttony Bay" might be my favourite track title of the week (if you grew up in the Northwest without a dad, you and your ma already know.) Vinyl crackle, twinkling Rhodes and dreamy synths welcome you aboard, holding it down for a killer conga loop that might have leapt out the groove of a battered Barrabas 7". Soon enough the kick gives you a solid handshake and introduces you to the rest of the rhythm section. It's warm, hazy and atmospheric stuff, perfect for warm ups, rub downs and sonic sweetspots. "Anomaly" follows on with Grade 8 perc programming, stunning, spiritual arps and the kind of bass sound Floating Points employed before he went peak elbow patch - sophisticated, sensual but light and carefree. Flip it for the girthy twack of "Find Me", a contrary kind of jam which somehow finds perfect balance. For all the kick drum's mainroom insistance, the glassy keys, jazzy guitar and funky bass provide a nimble pathway to somewhere lofty. Chuck in a killer vocal sample and you're fully feeling it - pinger and spliff tackle this. As if that weren't enough to prompt Cheshire Cat grins, those disco loving, deep house heroes from Hamburg, Session Victim appear in the remix role, refracting the track's energy into a galloping blend of disco 4/4, dub techno vamp and jazzy guitar licks. Loz the God in full effect folks.


    Patrick says: We're used to records of the highest quality from lieutenant Loz, but the Manchester man excels himself here, dropping the best record ever to land on Church White. Mature, melodic and moving house music which eschews any genre tropes in favour of something better and brighter. Gwan!

    Interesting little dance nugget / DJ tool here from the HAND camp who drop a percussive heavy, afro-house double A side complete with a plethora of drum loops and tribal business for the more creative DJs to utilize out in the field. Not only that, this is a samplers dream with plenty of raw drum passages ready to rip and load into your favoured hardware beat device. Top stuff from this illicit collective. Check!


    Matt says: Always a head turner when a record lands with some deconstructed loops and samples. Usually however it gets slung aside as the content's wack... on this instance however - it's mega - all rejoice!

    Four track EP rich in techno and atmosphere.  'Non-Physical Friend' starts proceedings with a looped midnight sax scene sample and thrown into a melange of dark yet groovy bassline and beats. It is driving, it is energetic and be prepared for the acid bombastic thrown into it half way through. 
    Things go more space race oriented on 'Special Access Programs'. Futuristic landscapes - possibly outside Earth are the main theme here. Unexplored lands full of mystery and beauty is translanted into fragile, perfect and melodic soundscapes. Track of this EP for euroSil. 
    Flip this 12" and you get a different type of game. It is more robotic, harsher, industrial techno what you will get here. Melodies are gone. Instead heavy beats and aggro bassline take the throne. That goes for 'Sonnenrad'. 'Axid Mundi' does not go that far from the above, it keeps that level of coldness along the whole track but throws in those melodies we were loving so on the A side. 
    All tracks are very good - playable and pushing the boundaries yet creating nothing new under the sun. It is a good R&S release and you gotta listen to it in its full glory to appreciate its beauty. 


    Sil says: Pretty solid release on R&S as it is the norm with this legendary label. Melodic techno goes robotic at times yet creating intriguing soundscapes for the space explorers out there. Future brought to your decks.

    Horse Meat Disco Featuring Amy Douglas

    Let’s Go Dancing - Inc. Dimitri From Paris Remixes)

    The musical manifestation of the warm glow that can only come from hitting the town with your friends; Horse Meat Disco and Amy Douglas have achieved peak nu-disco euphoria with "Let’s Go Dancing". Backed by all-original and live-recorded instrumentation, Horse Meat Disco’s unmistakable strutting style is unstoppable, while Amy’s impressive vocal range captures the energy of an entire nightclub dancefloor. With a little help from their friends Luke Solomon and session musicians on bass, drums, horns and keys, London’s nightlife champions have finessed their style, perfectly representing the Glitterbox sound ahead of an album forthcoming on the label in 2019. This very special 12” release is the first taste of the new material, enhanced by a groove-ridden Dimitri From Paris dub and glorious extended remix from the maestro on the flip. Stay tuned for more of the same stomping delights from the Horse Meat Disco boys.

    New one from Leeds' emergent Released cartel. The first record by Comfy Bella went down a storm here over the Summer due to its warm, sultry, Rotating Assembly-type vibes.

    Back for the Winter, the label switch mood with a more techno orientated, intensified ride from Horsemen.

    Featuring Nomoko, opening track, "Unknown" glides in on a evocative and exotic vocal hook, supplemented by humming sine tones. Eventually giving way to a skitty technoid beat that reminds me of Surgeon three track into an epic 4 hour session. Next track, "Motor Jungle" enlists a frenetic backline - vintage drum boxes, analogue bass, sampled chants & digital pads - conjuring up something that's equally Chi-town voodoo and rainforest esoterica; a modern day slice of nightclub black magic that could well have made our end of year 12" list it's that good!

    In-house MVP Jorgie gets to remix opening track "Unknown" - honing in on the late 90s downbeat vibe, injecting a laid back breakbeat, blankets of strings and pads and letting that magical vocal do the business; resulting in an epic moment of come-down bliss for your slowly fading after party session. 

    Flippers at the ready... High Scoring EP from one of the hardest working producers we know. The A side is a pacey affair - a multi-ball dancefloor battle against the Grand Lizard. The two equally neon treasures on the B side were recorded at the gear laden Worm studio, Rotterdam in 2017. This is another cracking solo outing from the Ju Ju & Jordash / Magic Mountain High linchpin

    Following up two expertly written 12"s that actually played more like mini-albums, comes this sprawling debut LP from Swiss modular overlord Benjamin Kilchhofer. To say artist and label have had a quick ascension to stardom is somewhat of an understatement, with Fact, RA and many other tastemaking websites listing the label and artist in the Best of 2017 lists - but we were there first folks!

    A double album across 20 (!) tracks, it perfectly encapsulates Kilchhofer's electro-biotic futurescapes - other world exotica and interplanetary fauna. If Kilchhofer's world is created by pieces of modular equipment - sequencers, filters, CV-control devices etc, then it's surely populated by a hybrid of organic and electronic lifeforms - cyborg birdsong, mutant frog croaks and the hiss of electro-static solar winds permeating through each and every track as Kilchofer navigates the plasma-stream cutting right through the centre of this cybernetic rainforest.

    Adjectives and abstraction aside, the album skirts between bedroom electronica, nu-exotica and experimental styles: Don't DJ, RAMZi and label mate Burnt Friendman all spring to mind, as does NY duo The Books; however these are merely vague comparisons: Kilchofer's world exists solely on its own.

    Although slightly too expansive and almost difficult to navigate, this simply opens up this epic long player for multiple listens; as if joining a route at different stages up and down river, riding the boat, then jumping off at different docks. The first disc eases us into the terrain, atmospheres and soft undulations, while disc two sees more rhythmic content introduced; signaling a deep immersion in the environment. Once you've reached the end of the record a content feeling of deep resonance with artist and record are reached. I strongly recommend taking psychedelics to this breathtaking 'diary' of work.


    Matt says: One of my favourite artists and labels of 2017 returns with a nothing short of epic double album, detailing Kilchhofer's rich and evocative sonic world. One for mushroom season make no mistake!


    2xLtd LP Info: Double LP with beautifully detailed, hand drawnn inner sleeves by Jake Fried and a detailed insert by Benjamin Kilchhofer.

    Neon Eros

    Neon Eros

      NEON EROS is the distributed follow up to the amazing Library Vol​.​1 Espaces Urbains compilation courtesy of ERR REC, an independent label dedicated to electronic and experimental music based out of Paris.

      Heavily inspired by early 80’s electronic music, fans of Herbie Hancock, electro funk and library music will likely find something pleasing here to fulfil their dystopian disco in Escape from New York-like fantasies.

      Maayan Nidam's "Sea of Thee" is described as an underwater realm of 'tech blues noir'. It's an interesting an accurate description of these tracks that draw you in through their moody electronic soundbeds, manipulated vox and mechanized rhythms.

      There's a thick, overhanging darkness surrounding the album that clings to the air like burnt plastic. Punishing piston drums occasionally attacking senses as well - it's both claustrophobic and terrifyingly isolated in equal measure.

      Being as it is, on Perlon, it seems easily suited to both club environments and deep home listening, a facet of the label that's kept it relevant for so long across dance music and electronic music worlds. 

      Tony's own No Smoke, a project with associate Fred McPablo, was one such name, and their 1989 uber classic 'Koro Koro' is a record that should need no introduction. A record that gained fame in its native London through being absolutely caned by the cream of the crop of the nascent acid house scene at the time. 'Koro Koro' was one of those records that had DJ's and dancers clamouring to get a copy, so much so that it was subsequently picked up and licensed by labels in the USA where the record had fallen into the hands of DJ's such as Tony Humphries, Masters At Work and many more, fast becoming an all-time classic in the states too. Essentially 'Koro Koro' birthed a new style of House and Techno music, fusing together tribal, African and percussive elements with analogue synths, hardcore street-style drum programming and a warehouse attitude. All very Warriors Dance indeed! This is basically one of those classic records, completely essential. All killer, no filler! The EP is presented again, in its full 1989 form with all 4 cuts intact. No edits, no remixes, just the pure unadulterated WD vibe, featuring original label artwork tweaked by Atelier Superplus and lovingly remastered by Optimum Mastering, Bristol, UK. 

      Kolour LTD celebrate 15 wonderful years by announcing the end of the label - booo! No way guys! :(

      For one last hurrah, they've brought in Australian house meisters The Posse to supply a final installment of sun-blushed house beauty. Previously gracing Piccadilly favourites Ken Oath with one of the twelve inches of 2017 (!!!) the four tracks on offer here are equally sublime, burning off into an infinite sunset as the waves lap at your naked feet and the cocktail bar busys into activity behind you. There's Juliet Mendoza, who supplies some seductive vocals for the wavy neo-house sway of "Just Go With It" - one of the EP crowning glories. Honestly - you need this record in your lives! 


      Matt says: We heart The Posse! Fabulousness as ever from this Ozzy crew, second flawless joint by them.

      New Hawaii! We are all excited when we hear the word Hawaii over here. Not just because of its gorgeous laidback ideas that have been embedded in our suggestive brains but because of this great record label.

      Prequel gives us four new great tracks and starts the journey with "The Song I Said I'd Make For You', some seriously jazzy mellow vibes mixed up with soothing keys and a distant warm drumbeat are all dancing together in agreement. That is until a strident guitar-sounding riff comes in. What happened there? We can only think that Prequel had a 'moment' there.

      On b2, aka "People Say", the 4/4 becomes more prominent. It still keeps us lethargic and chilled in our sofas with that dreamy guitar sample and those birds singing? Are they birds or confetti falling from the sky? Nice keys too half way in.

      Flip this piece of wax and well... There are no changes. The tone is still mellow and classy. Piano is on the center stage now. The jazz spirit is there but just touches of it, nothing overwhelming for the electronic music punter. Just light touches. That is how I would describe "And Though It's Been Too Long".

      On that note, we segue onto B2's "Give Me Things That Don't Get Lost'. Nothing different here, no surprises. The tone is exactly the same than on the other three tracks. Nice samples and plenty of soothing elements to make this EP a true horizontal dancing record. 


      Sil says: Continuing with the label ethos and sound, Prequel comes out from the studio with four slabs of chilled deep house with plenty of jazz flicks and soothing elements.

      Last time Prins Emanuel flexed his musical muscles on Copenhagen's vibrant Music For Dreams he delivered 'Arbete / Fritid' a double LP of analogue disco, Balearic boogie and leftfield house soaked in inventive melody, multi instrumentation and studio wizzardry. A big hitter with Balearic beards, disco heads and anyone with; a) taste and b) ears, the debut delight set a very high watermark for the Swedish producer. So, it's with complete incredulity that I sit here and tell you that "Diagonal Musik" is even better!
      Over the course of eight delicate and divine compostions there's nary a kick drum in sight. In fact, Prins Emanuel ignores the dancefloor entirely, swapping the studio trickery for the honesty and immediacy of an entirely acoustic approach. Guitar in hand, accompanied by the most subtle of organic percussion, the Swede strums, picks and slides his way through a gorgeous set of jazz-folk instrumentals. Think autumn leaves, rain on the window pane and cold coffee - cigarette smoke and a tear stained moleskine. If you'd told me this was a lost folk private press from 70s Europe, I'd be calling Basso and demanding he source me a copy. Forget genres, labels, press or playlists, "Diagonal Musik" is absurdly beautiful; and when you're old(er) and gray(er) you'll still be listening to it.


      Patrick says: I've been a big fan of Prins Emanuel for a long time now, and his weirdo disco gem 'Arbete / Fritid' has been in my record box ever since it came out. Here he throws us the most delightful curveball, dodging the dance floor and delivering eight gorgeous acoustic guitar compositions. Intimate, otherworldly and deeply evocative, this is the kind of record you'll listen to until the day you die.

      Best bring the uneducated up to speed with a limited remastered edition of one of the early elektro underground italian releases that became a classic in the Chicago house and Detroit techno scenes. The work of Florence duo Paolo Alfani & Nicola Serena AKA R.E.M., "Computer Communications" is a dizzying combination of snapping drum programming, icy Italo sequencing and Mattel Speak & Spell, which circumnavigates any hint of gimmick and instead smashes into my all time Italo top 10! Released way back in '83, this cut was a total milestone, and sounds every bit as vital right now as it ever did.


      Patrick says: Ice-cold Italo perfection topped with an MF Speak & Spell - no wonder the Detroit techno pioneers and nascent Chicago house movement went wild for it. Flash your lights!

      The new release of the mysterious label Lama, comes from Repetentes 2008, the alias of Brazilian producer Gabriel Guerra. Two beautifully kaleidoscopic tracks where you can hear the influence of 1980s video game soundtracks, Brazilian jazz-fusion, electronic pop and new age Japanese ambient music played at the wrong speed. Beautiful silkscreened artwork by Portuguese street artist Rudolfo. Limited to 200 copies.


      Matt says: Repetentes 2008 return after that brain fizzing EP on Future Times last year. The formula hasn't changed but they're still out there completely on their own - sounding like if James Ferraro and Stanley Clark collaborated on a new Donkey Kong soundtrack whilst on holiday in the tropics. Yes!

      Raf Reza joins Heart to Heart with "Moods From the Muiltiverse", after his stellar debut record "Proto" on Cosmic Resonance.

      This record feels familiar yet foreign, the tracks are like a transmission from across the expanse, awakening zones of the mind that were long dormant. We begin with "C-Quenz" a dancefloor ready acid track filled with bright melodies and hopeful feels.

      "Cruising Speed" is aptly named as this one takes you across the stars with mysterious yet energetic vibes, keeping spirits high no matter the time or place. "Rogue" is a futuristic voyage down the Amazon, tribal flavours mixed with hi-tech melodies come together fusing past and future.

      "Exit Point" closes it down with a Blade Runner-esque slow burner that expands your consciousness until you've reached the upper planes of enlightenment.

      A magnificent 4-tracker worth your dough! We got a few copies but they are literally flying to the mail order picking table as I write this blurb.


      Sil says: Futuristic retro-analogue trip worth a good listen. Exquisite, sensuous, playful and very uplifting. What else you want in a dance 12"?

      Roger That

      How Does It Feel

      White label roller from Roger That taking one of dance music’s most iconic vocals, New Order’s "Blue Monday" and flipping it into a heavy hitting, tech house heater. Packed to the rafters with punchy, reverberated stabs, low-end weight and lip-smacking dancefloor grooves it’s already steamrollering the club scene - ever extending the reach of those immortal lyrics.

      Hammered all summer long by the likes of Solardo, Camelphat, Marco Carola, Jamie Jones and Leon, it's is now available on a limited 12” vinyl. Don't sleep! 


      Matt says: Did someone say MAIN ROOM?!?!? Top's off business here RIYL: Artwork and Paranoid London. No amount of garies will be enough to satisfy the insatiable appetite of a floor faced with this.

      Rude & Mean

      Moments In Soul / Just Flow

      The third release on High Praise unites two long time friends of the label for their first collaborative venture, Rude & Mean. As key members of the infamous CoOp collective, James Rudie and EVM128 have been flying the flag for the UK’s broken beat revival, turning heads with their intensely soulful productions. Supporters include the likes of Gilles Peterson, Bradley Zero and many more. "Moments In Soul" and "Just Flow" are two exuberant masterclasses in how to create a joyful edit. Their broken beat background shines through in the meticulous drum programming, giving the performance a natural, live feel and setting it apart from others in their class. Syncopated rhythms, celebratory chords and relentlessly energetic basslines feature throughout - creating a groove so powerful you can’t help but be spirited away to the dance floor. With this release High Praise continue to build their status as a label to keep an eye on, with their party series and clothing line steadily growing in popularity.

      Precision engineered bass-techno hybrids here from the Well Street Records camp. Artist named Ruff Cherry who drops four tracks of tense, taut, technoid pressure.

      Opener "Siren" glides in on serene pad preset while frenetic perc fizzes and sparks away on the factory line; the odd metallic gear grind or angel saw screeching off at intervals. "Innocent" sees cavernous, voluptuous textures explored as underwater bleeps, bass ripples and analogue squelches work to create an alien and exposed environment for the listener. "Carousel" sees concentric drum lines spiral out of control while computerized mainframe melodies bleep away indefinitely. "Keeper" shudders with an overcharged electrical vibration, spring delays and resonate distortion making the whole thing alive with activity.

      RIYL: Sunklow, Cong Burn, Sheworks, Ternesc etc etc. 

      By 1981, after four years of DIY electronics, it was time for a change. For Philip Sanderson that change came in the form of film. At first, requests came from friends for soundtrack work, and by the end of the decade he was making short experimental 16mm films himself. "On One of These Bends" is a collection of unreleased songs, soundtrack work and obscure cassette only pieces from the 80’s which reflect Sanderson’s shift in focus. It was a departure from the industrial music he had been making with his group Storm Bugs, having more in common with Nino Rota and Henry Mancini, albeit as seen through a DIY lens, and with a reel- To-reel orchestra comprised of an EMS VCS3, vibraphone, DX7, Roland SH- 101, Roland TR-606, tape delay, acoustic guitar, fretless bass and Yamaha FB-01.
      On two numbers, Philip jokingly asked an American chanteuse to “sing it like a cross between Streisand and The Shangri-Las”, and to his surprise she did, the results sounding like a loungey AC Marias, or a lost early Crépuscule recording by Anna Domino. Counterpointing this are tracks such as "E For Echo" made with just an acoustic guitar, and the very first piece Bright Waves which combines the choral vocal talents of Nancy Slessenger with a Revox tape delay system, originally released on his own label Snatch Tapes, under the pseudonymous duo Claire Thomas & Susan Vezey.
      This album is presented with the ‘picture turned down’ so to speak, and as such the music acts as a kind of memento mori for the absent moving images, and maybe even for the decade itself. Remastered from the original reels, DMM pressing.


      Patrick says: Canadian digger and esoteric auteur Brandon Edward Horcura invites us into his Seance Centre once again, this time to enjoy the spectral sounds of Philip Sanderson. Moody acoustic guitar compositions blur into hazy ambience and fractal electronics as Sanderson embarks on a journey to a new musical plane.

      Saved My Life

      The Time Is Over

      Every now and then, we get a record in the dance section that automatically wakes up everyone in the shop. It does happen every two to three weeks. On this occasion is the elusive label  Downtown Romeo (three records released in four years) delivering the goods! And what a treat. A deep house beat packed with a groove to die for - goes hand in hand with MCDE early releases. It is warm and exuding vast amounts of feel good vibes without being commercial enough to make it massive. It is what we called a weapon. A slow, relentless build up filled with funky surprises and a gorgeous jazzy piano sample. And just when you thought that was all there was to it, you get the vocals... mmm... those vocals are from a Brazilian record surely. I am dying to know as I have heard the original several times. 
      Seriously good and a very nice surprise to get this on a Monday afternoon. It has lifted our spirits! 
      Let us know if you discover the sample, please. To do so, you need a copy of this and they are very limited. Truly highly recommended. 


      Sil says: A true stomper, a true legend of a track. A feat and an utterly necessary record in your collection. This is a very good house track that everyone needs. Guaranteed results.

      It’s easy to eye collaborative records between two established artists with either a weary sigh or a degree of cynicism. In an age where a track or record seems to perform better directly in relation to how many artist names are on the digital byline, it can often feel like engineered circumstance or a desire to exponentially boost appeal comes before any natural create endeavour. In the case of ‘On Reflection’ however – the new record by Derwin Dicker AKA Gold Panda and Jas Shaw, one half of Simian Mobile Disco, the venture, under the moniker Selling is rooted in a long-standing friendship and prior creative history.


      Coloured LP Info: Indies exclusive blue vinyl.

      Following the Dream 2 Science release on the Rush Hour Reissue series earlier this year, comes another NYC garage classic. Sha-lor's "I'm In Love" is by Ben Cenac, also known for his Newcleus outfit. Unlike Dream 2 Science, which remained an obscure record, even at the time of its original release, Sha-Lor became an international club hit and a Summer Of Love DJ staple. The timeless feel of this innocent, heartfelt vocal song sounds as fresh as it did back then and is sure to fill people's hearts with joy again. This reissue features the 'Caught Up Version', which was the most popular mix from the original, and a previously unreleased instrumental. Essential retro house!


      Sil says: Wonderful 1988 New York female vocal house rarity reissued by Rush Hour.

      Slim Media Player returns to Pacific Rhythm with a wonderfully original EP, "Quicksand", his first new material since 2016’s "Rhythms Of The Pacific Volume 3". The EP is the product of Slim Media Player & DJ D.DEE culling through 20+ hours of live jams recorded in Vancouver at Deep Blue Studios from 2016 to 2018.

      The EP opens with the records namesake "Quicksand", a playful piece of peak-time material that’s quirky, uplifting, and dare we say a touch heart-warming. "Mouthfeel" comes through swinging but plays a touch more koi than the opener, serving as an effective tension-builder on the dancefloor that builds into a thoughtful groover with some light at the end of tunnel.

      On the b-side S.M.P explores deeper territory with "Memory Bias (Nostalgia Mix)", an aquatic roller blanketed with warmth and a contemplative aire that stretches for nearly 9 minutes. The EP fades out with the gentle drift of "Tschüs", a warm swaddle that will quell your anxieties and affirm that there are indeed some things that are right in this world, this track being one of them.


      Sil says: Future classic for you. The typical vinyl you can listen over and over - now and in 20 years time. It is deep and playful. Deep house as it should be!

      Soundwalk Collective is a multi-disciplinary audio-visual collective founded by Stephan Crasneanscki, including members Simone Merli and Kamran Sadeghi. The Collective’s approach to composition combines anthropology, ethnography, non- linear narrative, psycho-geography, the observation of nature, and explorations in recording and synthesis. The source material of their works is always linked to specific locations, natural or artificial, and requires long periods of investigative travel and field work.

      Their recent projects include a collaboration with Patti Smith and reworking the archive of recordings on Jean-Luc Godard's film set. For the 8th Marionette publication, Soundwalk Collective present 'Death Must Die'. A sound piece that began in 2004 and ended up as a composition for the PS1 radio in NY. For this New release the Collective has revisited the piece in a more musical way.

      'Death Must Die' is based on Stephan Crasneanscki’s multiple visits to the sacred Indian city of Varanasi, originally known as Kashi and Banares. Sacred texts maintain that Varanasi isn’t even a city, but rather a lingam of celestial light, the subtle and cosmic form of Lord Shiva which manifested itself as a city for the sake of seekers of liberation. To bathe in the holy Ganga is to be purified of your sins. To die in Varanasi, is to attain liberation and to bring an end to the cycle of rebirth known as transmigration. Determined to capture the elusive reality of this ancient city, Stephan has day by day recorded and re-imagined his understanding of how to perceive the continuously moving stream of the holy Ganga; performing a simple form of sadhana, which request is to be very alert but also to allow your mind to be quiet, making it easier to slip into the streams, and into the current that both the city and the river are offering.

      ‘Death Must Die' begins before the rising of the sun and reproduces the cycle of a day in Varanasi, going down the river that is believed to be the divinity descended to this Earth in the form of water. She grants us happiness and salvation. The composition attempts to emulate the vibration of Kashi that encourages the kind of interiority that enables a person to get a better perspective on reality than one might have, while constantly being in the current of human life. A vibration dedicated to eliminating the distinction between human and non-human, between alive and dead, between light and dark.

      Remember that straightforward mix of EBM and synth-punk that came out on Antinote last year, wrapped in a suggestive black and gold sleeve? The lyrics were far from ambiguous and the music produced by Panoptique and Paula was joyfully aggressive.
      Broken glass, dogs barking & cats roaring: Succhiamo is back and gives us news from the scrapyard.
      The thing is, it seems that Succhiamo’s scrapyard has been animated by Bill Plympton : in place of dogs and cats, it’s a lewd Pink Panther chasing a spaced-out Scooby-Doo on Dolore Dentro or Stai Male. Happily championing bad taste, the two musicians even venture into the illegitimate territories of italo-pop missed hits, shaped for lipsync performances on Rai Uno with the nagging Que Pena.
      As we’re getting close to the middle of the record, the music gets openly punkier, climaxing with the explicitly named "Desiderio Di Violenza", brushing past 200 BPM. While the inevitable silence following the last notes of "Que
      Pena" temporarily puts an end to the pleasant nightmare that is "Mani In Fuoco", the figures – somehow similar to those inhabiting the world of Fritz the Cat – that Succhiamo insidiously inserts into the listener’s head don’t fade
      away: they patiently wait for the duo’s pulsing drum machines and the saturated synths to wake up again and set them in motion for another ride.


      Patrick says: After last year's sleazy exercise in electroclash revivalism, Succhiamo return to Antinote with their bedut longplayer "Mani In Fuoco", a scuzzy synth-punk journey through brash EBM, bruised electronics and S&M techno. Fans of Liaisions Dangereuse need to check out "Vecchia".

      Denis Sulta

      L & S (You Mean Everything Mix) / Awake Oh Rhion

      Hector Barbour drops a brand new EP for his newly minted Sulta Selects off-shoot - Silver Service. Following on from the label launch, which saw the label head tap promising Irish producer Cromby for an EP of hard hitting house and acid peak timers, comes "Silver Service 002", featuring two fresh cuts from Sulta himself.

      Channeling his euphoric live sets which have taken him around the globe, lead track "L & S (You Mean Everything Mix)" is a modern disco / funky house classic in waiting, a lush and swirling, lost-in-the-lights epic that builds around this one repeating disco hook. Reminiscent of the best bits from Roule & Defected but with Denis' own unique festival-slaying approach, this is gonna be doing the rounds for sometime me thinks.

      "Awake Oh Rhion" is much more abstract, with a minimal house framework introducing the track thru piano licks and glowing pads, everything suddenly gives way to childlike vocal chorus, awash in filter detritus and shaking with hyperactivity, before being swept under the studio carpet once again as that tense beat rushes back in. It's a strange and bewildering track that highlights how confident this DJ / produce has gotten at controlling big crowds on the outdoor stages. You almost thing that only Denis would be able to make this track work out, but it's almost perfectly designed for one of his flamboyant DJ performances in the process - genius or madness you decide!

      The new EP arrives in the middle of another busy period for Sulta. Earlier this year he contributed to Radio 1’s BBC Essential mix series, last month he curated and headlined his Sulta Selects FLY Open Air festival - which was hosted within a 17th-century stately home in Edinburgh! A poster boy for the modern dance scene, with Boiler Room and Fact Magazine chasing him around like an incensed paparazzi 

      Trummor & Orgel


        The Scandinavian kings of 21st century library recently returned with their sixth album and now the first to gain a UK release; sounding like Stereolab playing covers of groovy sixties lounge pop while adding contemporary sounds and textures. This is where Krautrock inspired electro meets psychedelic funk soundtracks from Italian B-movies. In Trummor & Orgel’s own words: “the goal behind making Indivisibility was to find balance between the organic and the electronic, the dynamic and the predictable, then and now; the equilibrium between man and machine.

        Since the start in 2003 Trummor & Orgel have released six instrumental full-length albums, they have worked musically with, among others, Ebbot Lundberg (The Soundtrack of Our Lives), Magnus Carlson (Weeping Willows) and Peter Morén (Peter, Bjorn and John), featured music in several TV shows and movies, received a Swedish Grammy nomination in the Jazz category, composed the score for a silent movie – but most importantly, built a reputation as being a brilliant and mind- blowing live act through their several hundreds of acclaimed live shows in Scandinavia and parts of Europe. Trummor & Orgel is Anders Ljunggren (organ) and Staffan Ljunggren (drums).

        Released on Salvation Records in the UK, Trummor & Orgel join the label that introduced Klaus Johann Grobe to an international audience as well as releasing records by Liverpool’s Strange Collective and France’s Forever Pavot amongst others. Available in a physical format in the UK for the first time, Indivisibility is released exclusively on vinyl.

        New EP from a young Manchester based clubnight-turned-record label. Index have been knocking around the city for a couple of years, even booking our very own Kickin' Pigeon to play one of their parties! Now branching into the world of vinyl, they enlist modernist technician Vase who drops four effortlessly sublime pieces of oceanic ambient-techno.

        Riding the crest of a small wake that gently sways across the surface of an otherwise calm sea, the four tracks undulated naturally and organically, reflecting the Sun's rays through crystalline motifs and mini-melodies. It's unrushed and meditative throughout, but there's a couple of moments that the more meticulous and thoughtful DJs will find use for out in the field I'm sure.

        It's a really accomplished, sympathetic and beautiful listen - a really impressive debut team Index! Label to watch....

        Walls Of Dada

        Walls Of Dada II

          Chris Olley from six by seven and Peter Holmström from The Dandy Warhols return with their second Walls Of Dada album. Walls Of Dada is a transatlantic cold wave project for fans of Cabaret Voltaire, Joy Division, early Cure and Bauhaus. This album carries on where the first one left off. 


          LP Info: White vinyl LP

          The mysterious Wino D makes his debut proper after teasing us with some white label copies of this truly out there 12". Spring reverberations and modular refractions of tried and tested, primordial rhythms, superposed with suspended gamelans, gentle synth undulations or high range, ethereal micro melodies. All very enchanted and enveloping but with a bit more to it than the shamanic house also-rans. There's also plenty of variety across the tracks, from circuit bent mainframe dodging to wacked-out rainforest lysergia; there's something for all corners of the cranium! Highly recommended and stupendously limited... Move quick!


          Patrick says: REPRESS ALERT!!! A high flyer in our 2108 dance floor round up, Wino D’s weird and whacked out 12” is back in stock for all the DJs who missed it first time round. Lysergic house and psychedelic electro for the techno druids out there!

          The Wire

          Issue 419: January 2019

            Inside this issue:

            2018 Rewind: the year in underground music:

            Releases of the year: We asked our contributors to nominate their top ten records, CDs, downloads and streams of the year, then we counted up the votes

            Critics’ reflections: Our contributors look back on 2018’s cultural highs and lows

            Black Noise: Reclaiming the racket. By Moor Mother

            Climate Sounds: Blowing hot and cold. By Lewis Gordon

            Minimal Rock: Beat the repeat. By Marc Masters

            Jazz & Protest: Freedom fighters. By Daniel Spicer

            Four/Four: Deconstruction time again. By Chal Ravens

            Columnists’ charts: Our specialist critics select music that rocked their corner of the subculture, from avant rock to the outer limits

            Artists’ reflections: A cast of 2018’s most active movers and shakers shine the spotlight on their cultural year

            Archive releases of the year: Our contributors voted for their top ten archival records, CDs, downloads and streams, and we counted them all up


            Kepla & DeForrest Brown Jr: The transatlantic duo document the passage of the black body. By Emily Pothast

            Still House Plants: Lo-fi, post-punk and improv meet in the Glaswegian trio’s music. By Claire Biddles

            Jasmine Guffond: The Berlin based artist bitcrushes herself into oblivion. By Abi Bliss

            Big Joanie: Handclaps and punk praxis drive the London DIY trio. By Claire Sawers

            Global Ear: Brasilia: Artists in the Brazilian capital find private solutions to public problems. By Phil Jones

            Invisible Jukebox: Meg Baird & Mary Lattimore: Will the The Wire’s mystery record selection force the US folk duo to give up the ghost? Tested by Abi Bliss

            The Inner Sleeve: Ectoplasm Girls on Tårtan

            Epiphanies: Vietnamese guitar music sends Elliott Sharp on a fantastic voyage.

            Despite his status as a key figure in the history of Japanese ambient music, Hiroshi Yoshimura remains tragically under-known outside of his home country. Empire of Signs, a new imprint co-helmed by Maxwell August Croy and Spencer Doran, seeks to rememdy this with a much needed reissue of Yoshimura’s debut 'Music for Nine Post Cards'. Available for the first time outside Japan, this new reissue comes in collaboration with Hiroshi’s widow Yoko Yoshimura, with more reissues of Hiroshi’s works to follow in the future.

            Working initially as a conceptual artist, the musical side of Yoshimura’s artistic practice came to prominence in the post-Fluxus scene of late 1970s Tokyo alongside Akio Suzuki and Takehisa Kosugi, taking many subsequent turns within Japan’s bubble economy afterward. His sound works took on many forms – commissioned fashion runway scores, soundtracking perfume, soundscapes for pre-fab houses, train station sound design – all existing not as side work but as logical extensions of his philosophy of sound. His work strived for serenity as an ideal, and this approach can be felt strongly on 'Music for Nine Post Cards.'
            Home recorded on a minimal setup of keyboard and Fender Rhodes, 'Music for Nine Post Cards' was Yoshimura’s first concrete collection of music, initially a demo recording given to the Hara Museum of Contemporary Art to be played within the building’s architecture. This was not background music in the prior Japanese “BGM” sense of the word, but “environmental music”, the literal translation of the Japanese term kankyō ongaku [環境音楽] given to Brian Eno’s “ambient” music when it arrived in late 70’s Japan.
            Yoshimura, along with his musical co-traveler Satoshi Ashikawa, searched for a new dialog between sound and space: music not as an external absolute, but as something that interlocks with a physical environment and shifts the listener’s experience within it. Erik Satie’s furniture music, R. Murray Schafer’s concept of the soundscape and Eno’s ambience all greatly informed their work, but the specific form of tranquil stasis presented on releases like 'Nine Post Cards' is still difficult to place within a specific tradition, remaining elusive and idiosyncratic despite the economy of its construction. This record offers the perfect introduction to Hiroshi’s unique and beautiful worldview: it’s one that can be listened to – and lived in – endlessly.

            STAFF COMMENTS

            Patrick says: Consider yourself fortunate. Unless you were a) extremely lucky, or b) had a healthy lottery win, an original copy of this Japanese ambient gem would have been way out of reach. Lucky for us then, that new imprint Empire Of Sign have reached out to Hiroshi's widow and laid the path for a whole host of reissues, beginning with this beauty. A landmark on its 1982 release, the beauty of 'Music For Nine Postcards' stands almost unmatched after 35 years.


            Ltd LP Info: Full reproduction of the original LP jacket and original liner notes in both Japanese and English.

            Bar follow up their first course with the aptly titled "BAR02": a haunting and slightly dramatic, Winter-proof EP. Zombies in Miami from Mexico drop two tracks that would fit great in any of the 80s sci-fi cinema pastiches currently doing the rounds. "Haunted Strasse" instantly hits the 'Stranger Things' sweet spot with its stepped analogue arp, glacial lead licks and vintage beat. "Mirrors" is a tougher beast, nodding to Nitzer Ebb with it's EBM judder and snap, but still retaining them cinematic leads.

            Pin Up boys take on side B with a different vibe - a precision engineered deep houser with a powerful energy and slowly rising intensity - perfect to close off those long, slog-a-thons at the all nite dance spots. Top stuff here, nice, understated and classy. Let's hope the label keep up this high 'bar' of quality (teeheehee - ed).

            STAFF COMMENTS

            Barry says: The last ZIM release for the superb Bordello A Parigi was a bit of a more straight-up Italo affair, but this one oozes nuances skirting the peripheries of all kinds of electronic genres. The frantic synth stomp of 'Haunted Strasse' is definitely more akin to the earlier output whereas the housey stomp of 'Mirrors' takes things a little more into the shadows, while the pin-up boys shine with their chilled out beachside sounds and snappy 909 rhythms.
            Killer outing.

            I love me some weird shit, and by the sounds of this killer label compendium, Dublin's Wah Wah Wino are leading the way leftfield right now! The mutual brainchild of Omid Geadizadeh, OD & Morgan Buckley (who you might remember from that unstoppable and uncatorizable OD/MB 12" a couple of years ago) Wah Wah Wino have three highly limited white label 12"s to their name so far, each offering its own totally off the wall take on good old dancing music. Well, sticking to that highly lysergic ethos, the label offer their first "Various Artists" compilation, air quotes because I suspect the label bosses contribute every track here. A-grade weirdshit - best enjoyed snorted through rolled up blotter paper...

            STAFF COMMENTS

            Patrick says: Described by our own Silvestre as a 'difficult vinyl', this dope double pack is the most experimental thing you're ever gonna enjoy dancing to. It may be madder than a wet hen, but it will make you move!

            Gravity Graffiti celebrates the tenth output in full effect with this unmissable double EP featuring illicit, under-the-counter fire-power from Telephones, Yoshinori Hayashi, DB.Source & Riccardo Schiro, Dynamo Dreesen, Oyvind Morken & Kaman Leung, Acidboychair.

            *Puts on Chandelier Bing impression* Seriously, could this BE anymore showbiz? Literally a who's who of modern day sound shamans, it's a thoroughly all-star cast if you like it spiritual and ritualistic! Perhaps 'esoteric' record of the year. Buy the ticket, take the ride! Trip protection advised....

            London's Warriors Dance label was a unique operation and a pioneering London label during the late 80's acid house phenomena. Home to an assortment of DJs, MCs and soundmen, they went on to make their own original and indelible mark on the rave scene from the infamous 'Addis Ababa' studio on Harrow Road on the North-West side of the city. Brimming over with rough and tough left-field sounds 'Warriors Dance After Midnight' is a strong statement of intent, 4 blistering and obscure cuts from the depths of Harrow Road. Crucial and essential. This EP has always been one of the 'tougher' WD records to track down with used copies and white labels changing hands for big money, a must for any fans of this sound. If you like your music rough, tough, deep and no nonsense, then this one's for you! The EP is presented again, in its full 1991 form with all 4 cuts intact. 

            RT @garethk: Every year the best end of year list is from the best record store on Earth @piccadillyrecords. Picks from @kadhjabonet and @o
            Thu 13th - 8:58
            RT @graemepark: Looking forward to a @longlivehouseuk chat, signing, mix session & more this Friday @PiccadillyRecs #Manchester #longliveho
            Wed 12th - 11:51
            RT @MelodicRecords: Working For A Nuclear Free City feature in this spectacular 10" soundtrack box set for Breaking Bad - grab it from our…
            Tue 11th - 5:56
            RT @agnesobel: Agnes Obel - @LateNightTales is #3 on @PiccadillyRecs' Compilations of the Year. Order here:
            Tue 11th - 5:34
            No, I’M friends with Tess Parks. Free @tessnormaparks stickers available on the counter…
            Tue 11th - 4:36
            E-newsletter —
            Sign up
            Back to top