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Toronto-based producer and DJ Ciel is renowned for a style of dancefloor material that’s as heady as it is visceral. The Xi’an-born artist’s ascendant profile has seen her cutting- edge and club-ready EPs released on UK labels Peach Discs and Coastal Haze, as well as Stateside imprints Spectral Sound and Mister Saturday Night.

As a member of the renowned collective Discwoman and the creator of femme-forward party Work in Progress, Ciel’s thoughtful narratives are clear, running in parallel to the perception-altering sounds that are consistently woven deeply into her wide-ranging sets, beloved mixes and inventive collaborations. Now the Parallel Minds label co- founder is crystallising her imaginative and omnivorous sound with her !K7 Records debut, "Orlando".

Written during her emergence from an uncharacteristic bout of writers’ block, the three original tracks of Orlando chart a return to the musical self, spurred along by a cinephile’s embrace of film, a love of classic literature, and a curiosity for the oddest corners of popular culture. “Scene From A Marriage” might share a name with the episodic series, but is rather a nuanced critique of the modern rite of union, moving through structured chapters, and mirroring the un-static nature of longtime love.Inspired by Virginia Woolf’s radical novel, and its superphysical protagonist, “Orlando” considers the cult literary figure who lived from the renaissance to the modern age, and embodies both sides of the sex binary. The thrown sounds and aural illusions of “El Califa” create the effect of a beckoning, beguiling psychedelic experience. To complete the EP, Ali Berger, Ciel’s recent collaborator on the Jacktone Records’ release Damn Skippy! repurposes the mind-bending flourishes of “El Califa” into a noodly and spacious deep house production, replete with pillowy, gauzy pads.

STAFF COMMENTS

Matt says: A future-proof selection of new tracks from Ciel whose fast paced productions transcend basic club music into something more cerebral and multifaceted. Don't get me wrong, these are gonna slay the dancefloor - but they also lend themselves to focussed listening beyond the club.

TRACK LISTING

A1. Scene From A Marriage
A2. Orlando
B1. El Califa
B2. El Califa (Ali Berger Remix)

Niklas Paschburg

Panta Rhei

    Across two previous albums, the now Berlin-based Paschburg has been captivated by the movement of the Baltic Sea (2018's Oceanic) and the darkness of a Northern European winter (2020's Svalbard). As a result of being unable to travel during the pandemic, this latest album finds him looking inside his own heart and mind. "It is an introspection expressed in music that ended up revealing two different faces: on the one hand the warm and positive feelings, on the other darker ones."

    Since first turning heads with his 2016 debut EP Tuur Man Welten, Paschburg has bewitched and charmed with his original compositional style. His contemporary fusion of ambient, pop, classical and electronic music finds him conveying deep emotions through his central instrument, the piano. He has collaborated with the likes of RY X, Hania Rani, Robert Lippok and Ah! Kosmos as well as writing the soundtrack for the 2021 French film “Presque” (“Beautiful Minds”). This new album features one track made with Frank Wiedemann - one half of acclaimed electronic duo Âme - and award-winning sound engineer Francesco Donadello who has worked with everyone from Jóhann Jóhannsson to Thom Yorke.

    Niklas's personal journey becomes a captivating and colourful musical journey that combines his melancholic and delicate pianism with synths and electronic beats, suggestive ambient and the evocative voices of German singer Lúisa, Spaniard Bianca Steck and the Icelandic Kaktus Einarsson, frontman of post-punk band Fufanu. It is a move towards ambient-pop that is intimate and meditative but with positive and uplifting vibes.

    TRACK LISTING

    1. Sunrise
    2. Zimt
    3. Flâneur
    4. Interlude
    5. Darkside Of The Hill Feat. Lùisa
    6. Delphi Waltz
    7. Serafico
    8. Lunatic Circus
    9. Istria
    10. 21st Of June
    11. All The Secrets Left Untold Feat. Bianca Steck
    12. Interlude 2
    13. Every Morning (Night 6) Feat. Kaktus Einarsson

    Tricky

    Ununiform - 2023 Reissue

      Tricky's 13th album, ununiform, originally released in September 2017 is a delicate, storming, intricate piece of work that sees Tricky take perhaps his most radical step yet – a journey into happiness and contentment.

      TRACK LISTING

      1. Obia Intro
      2. Same As It Ever Was
      3. New Stole (feat. Francesca Belmonte)
      4. Wait For Signal (feat. Asia Argento)
      5. It's Your Day (feat. Scriptonite)
      6. Blood Of My Blood (feat. Scriptonite And Tati)
      7. Dark Days (feat. Mina Rose)
      8. The Only Way
      9. Armor (feat. Terra Lopez)
      10. Doll (feat. Avalon Lurks)
      11. Bang Boogie (feat. Smoky Mo)
      12. Running Wild (feat. Mina Rose)
      13. When We Die (feat. Martina Topley-Bird)

      Tricky

      False Idols - 2023 Reissue

        Tricky's first album on his brand new False Idols imprint, launched almost a decade ago in 2013. “I was lost for ages” he says, after a 3 year hiatus since his previous album.

        TRACK LISTING

        1. Somebody's Sins
        2. Nothing Matters Feat. Nneka
        3. Valentine
        4. Bonnie & Clyde
        5. Parenthesis
        6. Nothing's Changed
        7. If Only I Knew
        8. Is That Your Life
        9. Tribal Drums
        10. We Don't Die
        11. Chinese Interlude
        12. Does It
        13. I'm Ready
        14. Hey Love
        15. Passion Of The Christ

        Tricky

        Adrian Thaws - 2023 Reissue

          “Calling it Adrian Thaws is saying you don’t really know me,” says Tricky, explaining the title of his 11th album. “So many times people have tried to put a finger on me and every album I go to a different place.”

          TRACK LISTING

          1. Sun Down Feat. Tirzah
          2. Lonnie Listen Feat. Mykki Blanco & Francesca Belmonte
          3. Something In The Way Feat. Francesca Belmonte
          4. Keep Me In Your Shake Feat. Nneka
          5. A.J. - The Unloved (Skit)
          6. Nicotine Love Feat. Francesca Belmonte
          7. Gangster Chronicle Feat. Bella Gotti
          8. I Had A Dream Feat. Francesca Belmonte
          9. My Palestine Girl Feat. Blue Daisy
          10. Why Don't You Feat. Bella Gotti
          11. Silly Games Feat. Tirzah
          12. Right Here Feat. Oh Land
          13. Silver Tongue - When You Go

          Tosca

          Osam

            For Richard Dorfmeister and Rupert Huber, the idea of rebirth is a creative driving force – an artistic device which not only informs their work, but anchors it. As the avant-garde electronic group Tosca, the two artists have lived many musical lives, from their early electronic experiments with tape decks to the blissed-out dub compositions with which they have made their name.

            Their latest project, OSAM, takes this idea of renewal even further. A meditative journey through rhythm and texture, the album represents a new chapter for the Austrian duo. It’s as much an instrument for change as it is a source of inspiration. ‘Osam’ is a direct translation of the number eight in Serbian, but it also acts as the mediaeval symbol for a fresh start – a renaissance. This is their ninth studio album but in true Tosca style when they started working on the concept for the record, they thought it was their eighth.

            TRACK LISTING

            CD
            1. Nobody Cares
            2. Gentleman
            3. Osam
            4. Shout Sister
            5. Tropical
            6. Clean Up
            7. Troststrasse
            8. Entrecote
            9. Dementamente
            10. Early Bird
            11. Make Up
            12. ECM2

            2LP
            A1. Nobody Cares
            A2. Gentleman
            A3. Osam
            B1. Shout Sister
            B2. Tropical
            B3. Clean Up
            C1. Troststrasse
            C2. Entrecote
            C3. Dementamente
            D1. Early Bird
            D2. Make Up
            D3. ECM2

            GCOM

            E2-XO

              Tom Middleton is focused on the future in many ways. His new alias GCOM is an all-new, 21st century redesign of his original Global Communication concept and collaboration with Mark Pritchard. The new album E2-XO is some of the most advanced music he has ever made, both in sound and concept. signifying a technological, creative and philosophical evolution into the new era; from planetary communication and understanding to Galactic Communication.

              A decade in the making, inspired by themes surrounding anthropocene humankind’s impact on climate, what we’re doing about it, conscious AI, and the acceleration for interplanetary travel beyond the Moon, to Mars, and eventually intergalactic in search of potentially habitable exoplanets, the story of the hunt for Earth 2.0. As he continues to expand his sonic horizons, Tom has been concurrently exploring visionary applications of astrophysics, AI, cosmology, cube-sats and rocket science, alongside more esoteric ideas about the nature of the Universe and the human condition.

              Previously his interest in sleep science led Tom to expanding the instinctively beautiful ambience of classic Global Communication into something tailored to helping people with sleep problems using brainwave entrainment; scoring an iTunes top ten album with his Sleep Better project, a record that is measurably therapeutic in the truest sense, and has spawned many projects focused on supporting human problems like anxiety, stress, sleep disruption and human performance using sound design for wellness, but with no loss of brilliance in terms of musicality. E2-XO is an audio movie, a space opera, a psychic investigation of the human mind in space. It is a fully immersive experience, with all the dynamics that such an imagination-stretching voyage implies. Listeners will hear echoes of Tom’s whole creative life; from his childhood absorbing Vangelis and Tomita, through the white heat of discovery alongside Richard D James, Matthew Herbert and friends, right through to his collaborations with technological innovators today and his current research into neuroscience and sound design. E2-XO acknowledges the past, but make no mistake whatsoever: This is the future…

              TRACK LISTING

              CD
              1. Noctis Ultimus (Epic Mix)
              2. XO Transmission #1
              3. Anthropocene
              4. Ocean Dreams
              5. The Last Rains (V Mix)
              6. Starship Launch
              7. Beyond The Singularity
              8. Helix Nebula
              9. Noctis Reprise (For QEBRUS)
              10. XO 1 (Luyten B)
              11. XO 2 (Kapteyn B)
              12. XO Transmission #2
              13. XO 4 (Wolf 1061c)
              14. XO 6 (LHS1723 B)
              15. XO Transmission #3
              16. Planet B Awakening
              17. XO 7 (Teegarden B)
              18. Midnight Shore
              19. Beyond The Milky Way


              LP
              A1. Noctis Ultimus (91 Mix)
              A2. XO Transmission #1
              A3. Anthropocene
              B1. Ocean Dreams
              B2. The Last Rains
              B3. Starship Launch
              C1. Noctis Ultimus
              C2. Beyond The Singularity
              C3. Helix Nebula
              C4. Noctis Reprise (For QEBRUS)
              D1. XO 1 (Luyten B)
              D2. XO 2 (Kapteyn B)
              D3. XO Transmission #2
              E1. XO 4 (Wolf 1061c)
              E2. XO 6 (LHS1723 B)
              E3. XO Transmission #3
              F1. Planet B Awakening
              F2. XO 7 (Teegarden B)
              F3. Midnight Shore
              F4. Beyond The Milky Way

              For a duo whose youthful energy rejuvenated the world of house music at the start of the 2010s, it seems incredible that Disclosure are now into their second decade of musical life. The incredible vigour of those early records, the spark of invention and ever-onward musical thrust, remains with the Disclosure brothers, Howard and Guy Lawrence, to this day.

              The emphasis throughout DJ-Kicks is on motion. After a brief ambient introduction from Pépe’s Life Signs, Disclosure keeps the energy high, in a mix that showcases the wonderful malleability of a house beat in the right hands. From sub bass to disco samples to 303 tweak, all is welcome in Disclosure’s house, with the mix allowing individual songs space to breathe even as the pace remains harefooted.

              TRACK LISTING

              CD
              1. Pépe - Recollection
              2. Harry Wolfman - LOTF
              3. Cleanfield - Conflict With Clayton
              4. Disclosure - Deep Sea
              5. Simon Hinter - Wanna Make Love
              6. &on&on - Don’t Say A Word
              7. M-High - Harmony In The Distance
              8. Slum Science - Mezmerized
              9. Disclosure - Observer Effect (DJ-Kicks)
              10. East End Dubs - BRave
              11. Onipa - Fire (Disclosure Edit)
              12. Arfa X Joe - Recognise

              LP
              A1. Pépe - Recollection
              A2. Harry Wolfman - LOTF
              A3. Cleanfield - Conflict With Clayton
              B1. Disclosure - Deep Sea
              B2. Simon Hinter - Wanna Make Love
              B3. &on&on - Don’t Say A Word
              C1. M-High - Harmony In The Distance
              C2. Slum Science - Mezmerized
              D1. Disclosure - Observer Effect (DJ-Kicks)
              D2. Arfa X Joe - Recognise

              James Alexander Bright

              Headroom

                James Alexander Bright's music is as visual a voyage as it is a sonic one; a kaleidoscope of colours that swirl, swoon, soar and sing. Stepping into his musical world is a multi-sensory experience, one where smooth grooves, wonky rhythms, dreamy melodies and immersive atmospheres coalesce to form their own sphere. “Sound as vision,” says Bright of the audio aesthetic he relates to and aims for. “Music you can bite into.”

                Based in the Hampshire countryside and an illustrator by day, Bright’s world is often a dual one but one where elements overlap and inform one another. “I spend a lot of my day creating things visually and everyday life can be an assault on the senses, ”says Bright.“ Evening is my quiet time; time for my ears. Invariably I’m inspired by the things that people and creatures do in the dark.

                ”This creative duality extends beyond just the visual and the music too. It’s found deep rooted in the music itself, which explores a mix between lo-fi and hi-fi, possessing an intimate bedroom recording-like quality but with production that sounds glowing and golden. Similarly, the sunny sheen found in the music-via a kind of psychedelic pop meets electronic soul-is one born from dichotomy.“I feel at home in the deep south of England,” he says. “I’m in the middle of nowhere with lots of green land, fresh air and head space. I feel like the sunshine in the South in the summer months really reflects in my music. However, I tend to make music in the dark hours and winter months, so it’s almost like the music is my sunshine and happy place in these moments.

                ”The end result is also an album that exists in a dual world, one that at times has enough bounce and buoyancy to fill a dance floor-as on the disco funk strutting “Lead Me Astray”- and others feels perfectly suited to introspective headphone listening as on the breezy, woozy ambience of “Cala Llenya”.The latter track pays tribute to the Ibiza beach of the same name, whereas “Dancing with the Birds”- a delicate exploration of pastoral folk-is a nod to one of Britain’s most beloved treasures. “It’s based on a late night walk having just watched a David Attenborough documentary, featuring these beautiful birds that have a crazy mating dance. I love his documentaries and I was listening to a lot of Bert Jansch. The next night I had this vision of dancing birds come into my mind.

                ”Elsewhere Headroom touches upon, in Bright’s own words, 60’s sunshine doo-wop, mutant disco, and mystic mountain top vibes. It’s an album that explores a great deal yet even amidst its dualities it retains a sense of cohesion throughout. It’s a mixture that Bright feels pleased to have managed to juggle so seamlessly. “I think there is a good balance around experimentation on the record-a nice mix between fun and substance.”


                TRACK LISTING

                A1. Go
                A2. Outside
                A3. Lead Me Astray
                A4. Cala Llenya
                A5. Dancing With The Birds
                B1. Gold
                B2. Damn
                B3. 6AM
                B4. Kip On The Highline
                B5. Friends (Lovers Lost)

                When Saints Go Machine

                Konkylie

                  The Danish four-piece — Nikolaj Manuel Vonsild (vocals), Jonas Kenton (keyboards), Simon Muschinsky (keyboards) and Silas Moldenhawer (drums) — are a complicated mix of influences. There’s dance music in there, for sure, but also post punk, some experimental electronica in the Aphex Twin mould, and, crucially, a healthy dose of pop. You could describe the end result as a heady mix of Caribou, The Knife/Fever Ray and Arthur Russell. But, really, it doesn’t sound like anything else out there.

                  The band formed in 2007. They started out making dance music, but quickly left four-four beats behind and started fusing electronics with pop melodies. They caused a local stir when Danish radio picked up on some tracks they’d uploaded onto Myspace. The buzz meant that their first ever gig was at Vega, one of Copenhagen’s leading venues. Then, last year, they opened the Roskilde Festival in front of 45,000 people, an experience Nikolaj describes as “fantastic”.

                  The band’s debut album, ‘Konkylie’, (Danish for ‘conch shell’ incidentally), has been two years in the making. It sees them moving their sound on into new, uncharted territory. On ‘Parix’, Nikolaj’s spectral vocals, a mix of Antony Heggarty’s tremulous falsetto and Talk Talk frontman Mark Hollis, are pitched against a shimmering mirage of synths. There’s an echo of their clubland past on ‘Kelly’, which is underpinned by a chugging, mid-paced beat. It’s the jumping off point for four-minutes of electro pop perfection, like Empire Of The Sun with some added Scandinavian cool. Nikolaj’s vocals, meanwhile, are never more beautiful that on the closing track ‘Add Ends’, where they float over skillfully orchestrated strings and gently popping electronics. It’s an atmospheric reverie that transports you to another place. All told, it’s stunning stuff, esoteric, yet instantly accessible, the kind of underground record that everyone can buy into.

                  One of the things that sets When Saints Go Machine apart from their peers is that there’s a warmth to ‘Konkylie’. Electronic music can sometimes sound rectilinear, like a Cubist painting. It was something the band were keen to avoid. They went to great lengths to inject an organic feel into the record, experimenting with new recording techniques and locations. All the vocals on the title track and opener ‘Konkylie’ were recorded outside in such unlikely spots as a tunnel and a forest. Then there was the assemblage of effects they created to inject a random element into proceedings. “We had this set-up of effects that we ran sound through to create an organic feel. Like tape echoes, other effects and synths. We’d control one element each and we’d mess around,” explains Nikolaj.

                  The band make no apologies for the fact that ‘Konkylie’ is a dense, at times complicated record. It’s partly down to the fact that they’ve spent a lot of time on it. “If you spend two years on 11 songs then there will be a lot of detail and strange sounds in there,” confirms Nikolaj. But it’s also a product of the four members different music influences. “Our musical backgrounds are so different from each other. Jonas and Silas are from a clubby background and they still make house and techno together as Kenton Slash Demon; Simon’s is jazz and neo soul; and I’m somewhere in between, ’60s and ’70s breaks, bands like Broadcast and The Slits and White Noise. That’s why there are so many elements in there — dance, post-punk, classical. But it’s hard to pick out tracks and connect them to one particular song. I think that’s a good thing.

                  And if it’s been a difficult, at times protracted process, the band are convinced it’s been worth it. “We’re really pleased with the album,” says Nikolaj. “All the songs fit together more than anything we’ve done up to this point. A lot of details we left in the songs from earlier versions. I think it gives the record a sense of many layers. The arrangements are bigger and better. It’s more evolved all round.”

                  True enough. When Saints Go Machine: you’ve never heard anything like them.


                  TRACK LISTING

                  1. Konkylie
                  2. Church And Law
                  3. Parix
                  4. Chestnut
                  5. The Same Scissors
                  6. Jets
                  7. Kelly
                  8. On The Move
                  9. Whoever Made You Stand So Still
                  10. Add Ends


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