Review: It's hard to exactly place the sound of Australian singer-songwriter-producer Chet Faker. He pitches himself as an "electronica" artist, but there's much more to his aural worldview than that - as this highly anticipated debut full-length for Future Classic proves. Warm, woozy, sun-kissed and off-kilter enough to appeal to the heads, it mixes tactile guitars, tumbling electronic melodies and curious rhythms with his distinctive vocals. The results are rarely less than impressive. The album's best moments are arguably those of a more horizontal bent, with the hazy, sax-laden "Lesson in Patience", slo-mo soul of "Dead Body" and spine tingling "No Advise (Airport Version)" standing out.
Review: Since releasing his first Floating Points record back in 2009, Sam Shepherd has constantly surprised. Predictably, he's done it again with Reflections: Mojave Desert, an album created from impromptu recordings of his live band made during a visit to Joshua Tree National Park. Inspired by their surroundings and the natural environment, Shepherd's ensemble have created a five-track set - and accompanying Super 8 film, shot and edited by the band's traveling visual artist - that's as atmospheric as anything the producer has released to date. While a unique proposition with its own distinctive vibe, the tracks variously touch on ambient, new age, spiritual jazz, woozy electronica, post-rock and the kind of Stockhausen-inspired experimentalism explored on Ragnar Grippe's recently reissued "Sand".
Sarah Davachi - "Track 1" (live In Portland - Excerpt - Exclusive track)
Carlos Walker - "Via Lactea"
The Rationals - "Glowin'"
William S Fischer - "Chains"
Max Roach - "Equipoise"
Abu Talib (Bobby Wright) - "Blood Of An American"
Sweet & Innocent - "Express Your Love"
Robert Vanderbilt & The Foundation Of Souls - "A Message Especially From God"
The Defaulters - "Gentle Man"
Alain Bellaiche - "Sun Blues"
Alain Bellaiche - "Sea Fluorescent"
Kara-Lis Coverdale - "Moments In Love" (Excerpt)
Azimuth - "The Tunnel"
Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith - "Milk" (Excerpt)
Toshimaru Nakamura - "Nimb#59" (Exclusive track)
Floating Points - "The Sweet Time Suite" (part 1 - Opening - Exclusive Kenny Wheeler Cover version)
Lauren Laverne - "Ah! Why, Because The Dazzling Sun" (Exclusive Spoken Word Piece)
Review: Sam Shepherd AKA Floating Points has long been known as a producer, DJ and selector with a staggeringly good record collection. It's for this reason that his edition of "Late Night Tales", a series dedicated to the joys of post-club home listening, has been so eagerly anticipated. The resultant mix is a triumph, with Shepherd showcasing a largely rare and obscure mix of new age ambient, high-grade jazz, sumptuous folk-soul (see Abu Talib's impeccable "Blood Of An American"), psychedelic soul weirdness, intergalactic jazz-funk, Satie-style piano movements and the drowsy, liquid electronics of Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith. The set also includes a handful of exclusive tracks, including a wonderful new Floating Points cover of Kenny Wheeler's "The Sweet Time Suite (Part I - Opening)". In a word: essential.
Review: Pitched somewhere between the gritty, propulsive beats of Los Angeles, and the exploratory jazz of Cosmogramma, Flying Lotus's fourth album, Until The Quiet Comes is arguably the most delicate record he's ever produced. Described as a "collage of mystical states, dreams, sleep and lullabies", it steers away from bigger moments, choosing instead to present an understated patchwork of breezy jazz samples, dusty hip-hop beats smeared vocals seemingly inspired by DMT hallucinations. While previous efforts were wildly futuristic at times, Until The Quiet Comes is confidently classicist - and seals Flying Lotus's position as one of our generation's visionary producers.