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FOUR TET

Brand new album from electronic titan Kieran Hebden who continues his futuristic creation of sound across eight elegant and fantastic tracks. Utilizing a now well versed palette which seems to effortlessly merge organic instrumentation and hybridized vocals into digitally processed pastoral soundscapes. All the usual Hebdenian traits are audible on album opener "Loved" - from his well loved live drum breaks to the slightly melancholic piano lines. Quickly ushering in a more liminal experience, "Gliding Through Everything" is a crystalline waterfall that reimagines H2O as a 4D particle cascading through your fingertips. "Storm Crystals" quickly soothes with twangy mallets, downbeat groove and healing tones; the moment you quietly settle into your seat, expectations met and suitably zoned in for the rest of the LP. Hebden concludes side A with the accelerated pace of "Daydream Repeat"; which doesn't drift too far from themes explored throughout the side but ups the bpm and buoyancy.

Side B slows us back down, ready for the second half of the trip; emotive guitar lines picked from the ether as angelic vox are gently smudged and diced before our ears - a sonic trademark the producer has previously used on tracks such as "Love Cry" and "Baby". "31 Bloom" bounces out of the mainframe at another slightly increased tempo, glitched arpeggios and highly sequenced piano fragments beautifully coalesced into a moment of transcendental ascension. Penultimate track, "So Blue" allows us a moment of reflection, stark elements imparting such strong emotions - there's few producers who can squeeze so much human feeling out of their machines. Finally, "Three Drums" concludes in suitable form - a slowly spiraling semi-orchestral fury into a white hot, retina-scorching sun'; almost hallucinatory in its saturation yet carried along at a languid pace; allowing the listener to unwind into a paradisical dream state of Hebden's own creation.

Have to say he's done it again. It's nicely succinct and sequenced to perfection, with the four tracks on each side perfectly 

STAFF COMMENTS

Barry says: I've always been a massive fan of the ol' Four Tet, and while I think the more recent outings share characteristics with the glitched melodies and syncopated percussion of Pause or Rounds, it's a far more relaxing affair in all, owing a lot more to ambient music than the dancefloor-focused outings of the past. 'Three' is possibly his most focused and enjoyable work to date, and that's really something for a man with such a stellar discography.

TRACK LISTING

01 Loved 4:03
02 Gliding Through Everything 4:08
03 Storm Crystals 6:40
04 Daydream Repeat 6:09
05 Skater 4:16
06 31 Bloom 5:52
07 So Blue 5:30
08 Three Drums 8:16

Jackie McLean & Michael Carvin + Chris McGregor’s Brotherhood Of Breath

Melodies Record Club 001: Four Tet Selects

“Melodies Record Club”, a string of DJ and artist curated mini compilations in loud 12” format. The first instalment was put together by Four Tet, selecting two big peak-time Jazz tracks he used to spin regularly at Plastic People.

On one side, we’ve got all time jazz greats Jackie McLean and Michael Carvin’s De I Comahlee Ah, taken from their seminal album Antiquity recorded in Denmark back in 1975. A year and a half ago, we visited Steeplechase, the original label in the outskirts of Copenhagen. They informed us that at the time, the track was cut short as it didn’t fit on the full LP. They were kind enough to provide us with the tape of the full original recording, allowing us to release for the first time the full extended version capturing twelve and a half minutes of studio magic. Speaking with Michael back in November, he told us that every song on that album was recorded without any overdubs. They had taken their shoes off and organised the studio in such a way that they could move from instrument to instrument during the take (!!)

On the flip, we have Chris McGregor’s Brotherhood of Breath – MRA. Back in 70s London, the Brotherhood had brought together musicians who had sought refuge from South Africa’s apartheid regime and the best of a new generation of British jazz musicians. Music journalist Richard Williams, who had originally reviewed the band in the 1970s tell us: “They made music that appealed in equal measure to the head, the heart and the feet, taking the jazz legacy of Duke Ellington and Charles Mingus and adding to it the fantastic dance rhythms and gorgeous harmonies of the townships and untethered collective improvisations of the new free music”.

Four Tet’s instalment is out early May in 12” format and digitally (stream & download), first press comes with a folded A2 insert with words from and about the artists. Graphic design by Studio ChoqueLeGoff, illustration and animation by Nevil Bernard and for the audiophiles out there, remastered and cut at half speed by Matt Colton at Metropolis Studios!

The second instalment curated by Ben UFO is scheduled shortly, which will be followed over time by a string of releases including selections from Hunee, Mafalda, Floating Points, Anya & Julia from Javybz, Daphni, Josey Rebelle, Charlie Bones, Gilles Peterson… and more, stay tuned!

STAFF COMMENTS

Millie says: Time to get your Jazz on, Four Tet Selects these absolute gems for the first instalment and it doesn't disappoint! Bring on the rest I say... more jazz, more jazz!

TRACK LISTING

A1. Jackie McLean & Michael Carvin – De I Comahlee Ah (extended)
B1. Chris McGregor’s Brotherhood Of Breath - MRA

A Grape Dope

Backyard Blenders: The Remixes (Inc. Four Tet / Laetitia Sadier / Jeff Parker / Roberto Carlos Remixes)

A 4 song EP of remixes of songs from A Grape Dope's "Backyard Bangers" album. Featured remixers are Laetitia Sadier (of Stereolab), Four Tet, Jeff Parker (of Tortoise), and Roberto Carlos Lange (also known as Helado Negro).

Laetitia Sadier adds an air of whimsy, holding your hand as she guides you through the enchanted woodland of “Rat’s It Up”.

Jeff Parker's wobbly-refix reminds me of classic Derrick Carter! Shuffled and twisted to within an inch of toppling over; it's overlapping arpeggios, hushed robo-vox and multitude of intertwining melodies an overwhelming excursion into peak tech-house territory that'd make Suat squirm!

Side B begins with a more relaxed, jazz-indebted affair, Roberto Carlos' remix of "You Don't Have To" a traditionally informed, though rhythmically challenging number comprised of dry drums, piano, bass and some echo-drenched SFX.

Completing the record, Four Tet swirls the stems of "Rainbo Locals" into the stratosphere for a dizzying and highly elevating twist which seems destined to turn craniums inside out when unleashed on a mass of people.

Nice set of remixes to compliment a very nice album indeed. 10 outta 10.




TRACK LISTING

1. Rats It’s Up (Laetitia Sadier Remix)
2. Rats It's Up (Jeff Parker Remix)
3. You Don't Have To (Roberto Carlos Lange Remix)
4. Rainbo Locals (Four Tet Remix)

Burial / Four Tet / Thom Yorke

Her Revolution / His Rope

    Nine years since their first collaboration, the three modern musical monoliths, Burial, Thom Yorke and Four Tet return for another spellbound session. Conjuring up two tracks of rainy day, dreamstate melancholia that seemed perfectly suited to the drugery of lockdown whence it was first released.

    Thom Yorke's vocals are stunning, yet subtley blended with a kind of fractal haze, reflecting Four Tet grasp of soundscapes while Burial's hushed ghostly whispers also reflect the kinda decayed urban dystopia the producer has singlehanded produced over his career.

    Downtempo and understated, they're highly emotive tracks that challenge your perceptions of how a track should make you feel and behave.

    *LIMITED REPRESS - MOVE QUICK!*


    TRACK LISTING

    Her Revolution
    His Rope

    Four Tet

    Anna Painting



      STAFF COMMENTS

      Matt says: Well, that went quick dint it! Another lesson in using our pre-order service (although you had to be quick on the draw this time)... we're all starting to get the feeling here at HQ that old Keiren H could be planning a major project...

      TRACK LISTING

      A1. Anna Painting
      B1. Lahaina Noon
      B2. Breath

      Four Tet

      New Energy

        Finally one of the most requested, eagerly anticipated and generally exciting LPs of the year has finally landed. That's right, ambient maverick, electronic legend, jungle revivalist and abstract jazzer Four Tet is back with his first full length (longer than two conceptual suites) LP of brand new material in four years. Leaving the archival "0181" to one side, Kieran's last two LP outings were the extended and mind expanding ethno-lectronica of "Morning / Evening" and the dislocated, narcotic and blunted jungle of "Beautiful Rewind". Much to the delight of the KH traditionalists out there (cough...Barry) there's nary a spinback in sight on the blissful "New Energy", the producer opting instead to stroll calmly through the ambient pads, twinkling sequences and sublime textures which kept us company from "Everything Ecstatic" through to "There Is Love In You". Float away on the chilled waters of "Alap", nod along to the harp-led downbeat of "Two Thousand And Seventeen" and smile along to the soft focus stylings and pastoral glitch of "LA Trance". The B-side brings the "Ringer" style hypno-rhythm and "Love In You" beauty of "Lush", before darting off into the skitterish BOC beat space of the jazz flecked "Scientists". Boasting subtle breakbeats, cinematic swells and pulsating electronics, not to mention a bewitching kalimba refrain, "You Are Loved" sees out the first disc in sublime fashion.
        Onto the second platter and "SW9 9SL" (a nod to Four Tet's Brixton Academy all nighters) is a streamlined club banger decorated by shuffling percussion, rumbling bass and a massive, hands aloft breakdown. "10 Midi" offers a moment of calm after that dancefloor burner and leads nicely into the harpy downbeat of "Memories". Referencing the mantra like vocals of "Morning/ Evening" and "There Is Love...", "Daughter" is a gossamer blend of reversed vocals, cascading melodies and soothing bass - the perfect companion to the astral, ethno-techno of "Planet". Pulsating space sounds, scattered vocals and trilling kora dip in and out of the spectral arps, riding a sturdy 4/4 thump into the furthest reaches of our galaxy. All that remains is to buy yourself a copy, sit comfortably by the speakers and rest easy in the knowledge Four Tet's done it again.


        STAFF COMMENTS

        Barry says: Combing the brilliant off-kilter jazztronic excursions of early years with the more downbeat, dancefloor-orientated kinetic outings of late (not that late) has worked a treat. Properly beautiful.

        TRACK LISTING

        01 Alap
        02 Two Thousand And Seventeen
        03 LA Trance
        04 Tremper
        05 Lush
        06 Scientists
        07 Falls 2
        08 You Are Loved
        09 SW9 9SL
        10 10 Midi
        11 Memories
        12 Daughter
        13 Gentle Soul
        14 Planet

        Four Tet

        Morning / Evening - 2023 Vinyl Repress

        The one and only Kieran Hebden returns under his Four Tet moniker with his first long player proper since 2013's "Beautiful Rewind", and it's predictably brilliant. Abandoning such trivial conventions as track titles and track lengths, KH dives straight into the deep end of the conceptual waters with a pair of 20 minute compositions, known simply as "Morning Side" and "Evening Side". The former continues Kieran's recent flirtation with the dancefloor, although replaces the junglist leanings of "Beautiful Rewind" with a textured, organic house beat. Achingly beautiful synthlines weave around the beat, transporting us back to 2008's "Ringer", before a heartbreaking sample of hindi vocals and strings overcomes our senses and raises our spirits. As the track evolves, Four Tet gently expands our horizons with a building shimmer of synth melodies, drones and fx until we finally collapse into the lush electronics the side finishes with. The "Evening Side" continues where we left off, although the transcendent mood of the A-side is replaced by a low key calm as blinking electronics play us a lullaby in the moonlight. As we drift into dreams, the cascading keys tumble around us like shooting stars, inviting another hindi vocal along for the ride. As a whole, "Morning / Evening" almost works as a retrospective, collating the genius of distinct periods of the Four Tet ouvre into one coherent whole.

        TRACK LISTING

        1. Morning Side (20:24)
        2. Evening Side (19:53)

        Four Tet

        Beautiful Rewind - 2024 Repress

        With the minimum of fuss, one of the UK's (perhaps the World's) foremost electronic musicians releases his tenth LP. No press agency, no media campaign, just a casual tweet and it's here. This immediacy is carried through into the music on offer. The track lengths are shorter than we've become used to, with Hebden getting straight down to the nitty gritty and distilling his complex melodies and rhythms into their most potent form; no ambient preamble or sprawling kosmiche on this one. Instead, Four Tet continues the journey through club music he began on "There Is Love In You" and "Pink", now taking the fire escape out the main room into a strip lit car park. "Beautiful Rewind" acts as part pirate radio jungle assault and part post club come down bliss. Hebden feeds the jungle chatter, polyrhythms and bass wobble through his own experimental and dense production to create an immersive yet raw experience like listening to Rooms 1 and 2 at the same time from the depths of a K-Hole. Album opener "Gong" and recent single "Kool FM" and the murderous "Aerial" and "Buchla" are bold and aggresive, while "Unicorn", "Your Body Feels" and "Ba Teaches Yoga" could sit comfortably with the fragility and beauty found on "There Is Love In You". Always wishing to push forward, Hebden has delivered some of the old, alongside a generous helping of new, casting his net wider and pulling varied influences together to form a complete and unique LP.


        TRACK LISTING

        01. Gong
        02. Parallel Jalebi
        03. Our Navigation
        04. Ba Teaches Yoga
        05. Kool FM
        06. Crush
        07. Buchla
        08. Aerial
        09. Ever Never
        10. Unicorn
        11. Your Body Feels

        Diana

        Perpetual Surrender - Inc. Four Tet Remix

          Diana are an enigmatic foursome from Toronto. Consisting of Joseph Shabason, Kieran Adams, and singer Carmen Elle, with Paul Mathew recently joining the live line up. Shabason and Adams met while studying jazz at music college, and there are soft-jazz touches on 'Perpetual Surrender', which pulls in references such as new age dreaminess, Sade-like mellowness and wistful acoustic soul-pop - there's even time for a yacht rock sax solo.

          Kieran Hebden obviously takes the 4/4 route, with some of his layered, percussive, fidgety house-not-house rhythms possibly created from the parts of original version. His remix slowly builds until he adds Elle's sweet vocal for the full effect. Subtle and dreamy, this is a delightful piece of dance-pop a million miles away from autotuned fodder that clogs up the top 40 these days.



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