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INTERNATIONAL FEEL

Not content with an extensive A&R schedule and running a new Balearic empire, International Feel impressario has still managed to find time to retire to his home studio, resurfacing with another 12" of sublime new material. The title track is an elegant wash of Tangerine Dream synths and shuffling, tribal percussion, rhythmic and purposeful without ever leaving its deck chair. Fluttering lead synths bring the track right up to the here and now, while the bubbling bassline should keep the bleary eyed ravers swaying while the sun comes up. The flipside sees Barrott harness the sultry swelter of tropical climes, topping a lush field recording with ambling bass, acoustic guitars and gentle synths. Put simply, it's more music to drift away to.

Niiiiice sound pal! Scott Gilmore with some ultra-synthetic future tropicalia here on your favourite holiday house label - International Feel. "Electric Gestures" gets us underway perfectly, a low filtered hook with wobbly synthlines and plump textures, it's both immediately accessible but refracted back through some alien filter, so as to make the whole thing slightly otherworldly. "Things Forgotten" is that long lost Brazilian folk b-side, only again, it glows with an radiance so strong that it exits human form into something more transient. "Lately" continues this theme with exotic, beguiling motifs - flutes, strings, pipes, all blended into a swirl of digital processing and ambience before "Another Day" closes off proceedings with a gentle push back to land; vocoder vox, steady b-line and a wealth of Balearic instrumentation converging on the mix only to be psychedelized further still by Gilmore's intricate outboard fx. A well realized and engrossing listen here, well sequenced throughout and sounding super fresh. Excellent stuff.

On the white island, between Ibiza Town and the infamous fish shack high up on a rock next to a bird sanctuary, you will find the beach of Talamanca. Plagued by too much seaweed, anchored middle-class yachts and joggers, it is also surprisingly the spiritual home of a correspondent post-Balearic group. As luck would have it, a remix request by Mark Barrott bedded the International Feel boss in a trio with Philipp Lauer and Gerd Janson, alias Tuff City Kids.

A highly sought-after 12-inch later (“Balanzat”), as well as fantasies of getting together to work on more material, led to a fruitful and effortless studio session on the non-Balearic outskirts of Frankfurt am Main. The outcome of that meeting forms the homonymous debut album of Talamanca System. A documented vision, or a sunburned imagination of a day and night spent on said island, during a moment in time that probably never was or will be. Still summed up best by dungarees, long hair, yellow sunglasses, espadrilles or that famous picture of people grouped around roofless Amnesia's pyramid well, it is the food of the Balearic gods. But, dear nostalgia, stop right here!

Even though Talamanca's debut flies the Balearic flag, it is not about turning back the clock, but rather about a past that could be the future. Dusted, danceable, driving, dreamy and dapper at the same time, this is an album for the club, the car, the beach, the (coke)float and the fountain. Coined by the colourful and respective talents of the three individuals behind Talamanca, you will hear nine tracks ranging from up to downtempo, piano house smashers that would have deserved the prefix Italo-, percussion rituals captured by a group of Zoo animals on the loose, soundtracks for dusk and dawn, hushed vocals, rites of ambient passages, powerful synth ballads and vamp choirs. If this album were a car, it would be a Citroen 2CV remade by Tesla.

STAFF COMMENTS

Barry says: Balearic rhythms meet headfirst with sweaty dancefloor neon numbers, beautifully effervescent but inexplicably laid-back, close your eyes and get lost in the vibes.

Talamanca System

My Past Is Your Future

    Talamanca System are Gerd Janson, Phillip Lauer of Tuff City Kids and Mark Barrott. Their sole release in late 2014 became one of the best selling on the International Feel imprint. "My Past Is Your Future" brings them back together once more for a magical trip into Balearic heaven. The EP delivers a nirvanic state, with "My Past Is Your Future"'s use of delicate chords, cascading keys and effortless groove. A divine record, paired with a "Beatless Stars Is Space" mix that strips it back to its core dreamy essence. Finally, the "Chukka Chukka Dance" mix see the track return to the dancefloor for one last dance - and end of night romp dripping in sweat, exuberance and dropped jaws. Ace

    STAFF COMMENTS

    Matt says: With an all-star cast of producers involved in this project, expectation were high. Lucky the crew don't disappoint as they deliver a stunning collection of Balearic dreaminess.

    International Feel impressario Mark Barrott returns for 2017 with this four tracker of brand new compositions inspired by life's moonlit moments and the intimacy of night. "Schopenhauer's Garden" opens the set with "Chariot's Of Fire" style sequences, snaking sax licks and naive guitar melodies all treading their soft steps over a vaguelly dubby beat. Reminiscent of Peter Gordon's collaboration with Factory Floor if you play it at 33 (a trademark Patch Balearic secret there), this track warms us up nicely for the rest of the release. The A2 swims through crystal clear new age waters, chasing a irresistibly female with almost the best name out there. The sax makes a welcome return as the synths sing of the man of twists and turns driven time and again off course, much like Barrott himself in fact. Over on the B-side, "Mokush?" carries us through the neon lit night-time streets of Tokyo on swelling bass synths, spaced out sine waves and trance inducing tones. The naive melodies and opiated electronics continue on EP closer "Lysander" as Barrott composes his own version of Blade Runner's love theme.

    STAFF COMMENTS

    Patrick says: IFEEL leader Mark Barrott invites us into his marble mansion for a nightcap, scoring the moonlight with four tracks of free flowing synthesis and swirling saxaphone.

    International Feel impresario and contemporary Balearic emperor, Marcus Antonio Barrott returned to the LP format a couple of months back with the second instalment of his "Sketches From An Island" series. Shifting nimbly between the bright and the breezy, the cool and the calm and the downright meditative it was a bloody lovely listen, pushing Barrott's vision of contemporary Balearica further than ever before. Sticking with the recent IFeel formula, that LP is now followed by a set of remixes from label friends, Balearic legends and exciting new talents.
    CFCF is first to take to the task, following up his recent International Feel LP with a dreamy break fuelled remix of "Brunch With Suki". Cascading electronics and trilling keys top a shoulder rolling bassline while that heavyweight breakbeat rocks us all the way from 1995. Cinematic and splendid, this choice mix manages to join the dots between Barrott's Balearic present and his Future Loop Foundation past, dipping into double time to trip us right out. It's worth a moment's quiet reflection before we dive into the A2, after all, we're in the presence of greatness. Finis Africae, Ishinohara and Mecanica Populaire man Luis Delgado brings a wealth of experience and passion for world musics to "Over At Dieter's Place", turning the original into a soothing and beautiful lullaby alive with fretless bass, tinkling melodies and exotic strings. Over on the other side Italian duo Nu Guinea follow up killer releases on Early Sounds and Tartelet (if you haven't heard them, you should - Patch) with a stand out version of "The Mysterious Island Of Dr Nimm" inspired by 70s Library funk. Over a backdrop of animal chatter, tropical birds and buzzing insects, the duo deliver squirming bass, gliding synthlines and exotic keys to turn out the kind of jam Tarzan listens to when he's all swung out - laid back in your leopard print and enjoy. Last but by no means least we see the return of Domenique Dumont for the first time since the stunning "Comme Ca", transforming "Der Stern, Der Nie Vergeht" into a tabla laced, mallet led journey into the horizontal. If you've got a hankering for early Padilla vibes then this sunset spectacular should be right up your alley.


    STAFF COMMENTS

    Patrick says: Senor Barrott brings out the big guns for this remix disc, enlisting CFCF, Luis Delgado, Nu Guinea and Domenique Dumont to work their magic. It's a tough one to call but that funky and floral version from Nu Guinea is tickling all my tastebuds right now.

    Wolf Müller & Cass

    The Sound Of Glades Remixes - Inc. Tolouse Low Trax / Wolf Müller / Cass. Remixes

    Wolf Müller & Cass. arrived with their mini-album "The Sound Of Glades" on International Feel in early summer. A beautiful record comprising of natural percussion and long languid journeys for laying in fields and staring at skies. Following the 12 inch route travelled with Len Leise and CFCF, IFEEL asked both Jan & Cass. to remix one of the tracks and also choose a remixer for a third rework.... "Glade Runner" on the A side features a remix by Salon Des Amateurs resident Tolouse Low Trax. If there is one club in the world we'd like to go to right now its the Salon in Düsseldorf. A place where the beats rarely go over 110bpm and they understand the meaning of the word groove. Detlef Weinrich aka Low Trax is very much in this world. His mix arrives from a slightly different place. Wonky insect sounding synths and a perfect bump and ride. Not really much music out there that sounds like this as it clearly comes from a place of experience and the music that he loves to play. The B side is home to a version each by Wolf Müller and Cass. Müller's Wind Version of "Aiolos" takes the original sound of the forests to the beach. Ibiza via Germany. Cass. takes the same track to a more mellow zone to round things off with his trademark drones & drifting vocals, light percussion and flanged drums... 

    STAFF COMMENTS

    Patrick says: International Feel stop by the Salon for this remix disc, dedicating the A-side to the voodoo electronics and techno tribalism of Tolouse Low Trax. If Detlef brought the storm, then Wolf Muller and Cass cool things down with the coastal chill of the B-side. I'm all over this one!

    Although it may be hard to believe on a rain-sodden Mancunian afternoon, it’s always summer somewhere in the world. Born out of sunshine and good times comes this sophomore LP from International Feel impresario Mark Barrott. Picking up exactly where the first volume of the series left off, “Sketches From An Island 2” finds Barrott at ease and at home in Ibiza, weaving the sounds and sensations of the White Isle into nine dreamlike meditations for a better life. Pulling together field recordings, dusty synths, African percussion and slide guitar, Barrott walks us from the comfort of his balcony to the calm of the beach, drifting into aperitifs at La Torre and dropping out with the drummers at Benirras. Forget everything you know about Ibiza, this is a tribute to the backstreets and secret beaches, an invitation to find the Island within ourselves.

    Barrott coaxes us into his world with the sumptuous “Brunch With Suki”, a symphonic groover on an upbeat Quiet Village tip, before dropping the tempo for the circular mallets of “Over At Dieter’s Place”. “Driving To Cap Negret” fuses the organic and electronic into an emotional pop gem, while “Winter Sunset Sky” and “Distant Storms At Sea” find Barrott translating the beauty and majesty of our world into an Innovative Communication of his own. The storm breaks as the marimba led “Cirrus & Cumulus” offers a Mediterranean take on African folk music, before “Der Stern, Der Nie Vergeht” takes shape as a post-kosmische tribute to Cluster, Harmonia and LA Dusseldorf. Our journey ends with the LP’s most contemplative moments, “Forgotten Island”, a cinematic wonder rich with melancholy and mournful beauty, and the uplifting calm of “One Slow Thought”, a perfect sundowner serenade to see us home.


    Len Leise's 'Lingua Franca' launched International Feel's mini-album series (closely followed by the wonderful CFCF with 'On Vacation'). 'Lingua Franca' reached critical acclaim and tipped into end of year charts from the likes of the Vinyl Factory and our good selves here at Piccadilly Records. Each mini-album in the series will be followed by a 12" featuring a remix by the artist and another respected producer. Revisiting 'Lingua Franca' are Gilb'r and Leise himself.

    Len Leise hits a mood and rides it. His album was heavily percussive, melancholy in places, uplifting in others and gloriously well balanced. For his remix he takes hold of 'O Caminho' and turns in a dub-heavy ride of a track. Bass lines rumble and the congas move. Road tested in various nightclubs, it kicks when played loud. The original of 'O Camino' also makes an appearance on this package.

    French native Gilb'r is a legend on the house scene. He makes ridiculously good records on his own, and also alongside the likes of I:Cube, as well as running the well-respected Versatile label. On initial listen his mix sounds stripped and industrial, but get lost in it and you can hear why he is so highly regarded. It's a timeless piece of house music made with the dancefloor in mind.

    So there we go. Another chapter in the wonderful world of Len Leise and International Feel. A star the making and a label always pushing the fold.

    Certain places have a history that allows things to happen outside the norm. Ibiza is one of those. A place where anyone with an open heart can find their space. A place where maverick thinking still matters. It's this environment that in turn nurtured and created the music and style known as Balearic.

    Mark Barrott’s (ex Future Loop Foundation) ‘Sketches From An Island’ compresses this Balearic heartbeat into nine warm gems which paint a picture of the island, the people and the magnetic beauty that pulses through it. Recorded in Ibiza's northern hills using “weird percussion, some slide guitars and a few borrowed synths,” it’s a melodic and mysterious representation of a place seeped in a rich and rebellious history.
    Opening track ‘Baby Come Home’ radiates with carefree tropical sounds and upbeat harmonies. The blues-soaked melodies of ‘Essene’ perfectly navigates the tension between heart-bursting happiness and melancholy and ‘Go Berri Be Happy’ is like Prefab Sprout gone to Ghana. It’s colour smudged hazy emotions swirl between Brian Eno, Penguin Café Orchestra and Compass Point vibes into a free-flowing cascade of live playing and synthesized sound, perfectly epitomised on the future classic 'Formentera Headspace Blues'.

    “'Sketches' is inspired by those weird, unique little oddities that would turn up on early José Padilla mix tapes that he’d sell in the Las Dalias hippy market, before he even went to the Café Del Mar,” says Barrott. “It’s influenced by living in Ibiza year-round, and by the feeling of what I think Balearic sounds like.”

    It’s warm and widescreen music for the days when you need musical sunshine. Or as original Café Del Mar’s José Padilla, has it: “This is what I call Balearic.”


    Following the regular drip feed of double A side 12" releases, the "Locussolus" album shows Harvey’s full vision, all together in one place, for the first time. This is Harvey’s 'Tales from the Nocturn' if you like, a journey through nighttown... Or what happens in Bassett world from dusk ‘til dawn.

    "Gunship" leads the way to the dancefloor with some bleepy techy house moves. "Little Boots" is the bathroom, or perhaps the sitting room track - definitely not one for the dancefloor (unless you're in that glued-to-the-floor K-hole mode!). Head nodding beats, skittering percussion, rock guitar riffs and more female vocals add to the Balearic-psyche feel. "I Want it" gets back on track, taking us to the middle of the dancefloor with a killer (electro)disco sound. "Throwdown" is kinda Balearic, kinda electro-folkie, kinda psychedelic, with a touch of Ian Brown in those vocals. New track "Bloodbath" is a deep cosmic electro cut, while "Tan Sedan" mixes a nice tight techy house groove with a new wave / new romantic era style vocal and Japanesque synth riff. The slinky "Next To You" closes the album, but to complete the journey, there are four amazing remixes from Andrew Weatherall, Lindstrøm & Prins Thomas, The Emperor Machine, and Harvey's own dubbed-out reworking.


    STAFF COMMENTS

    Philippa says: As the young pretenders move in to dethrone their elders it’s worth noting that there’s plenty of life in the old dogs yet, and while the youngsters can supply mono-genre top-end digital thrills, it’s only decades of record collecting and an immersive love of a wide scope of music that gives a producer the ability to create the disparate selection of brilliant tunes that make up Harvey’s “Locussolus” LP. From the bleepy techy house moves of "Gunship", “Tan Sedan” and the killer (electro)disco sound of "I Want it", via "Little Boots"’ horizontal reggae trip, kinda Balearic, kinda psychedelic offering "Throwdown” and mellow disco-pop of “Next To You”, “Locussolus” is packed to the gills with gems. Add to that a trio of amazing remixes from Andrew Weatherall, Lindstrøm & Prins Thomas (track of the year?) and The Emperor Machine and we have the Piccadilly Records dance album of 2011.


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