Review: Having spent the last 18 months guesting on numerous compilations and multi-artist EPs, rising electro star Arsonist Recorder has finally been given a chance to showcase his wares across an entire vinyl EP. He's grasped the opportunity with both hands, filling his debut outing with club-rocking rhythms, foreboding Drexciyan bass, and similarly mind-altering synthesizer sounds. We're particularly big fans of EP opener "Vaxxer", which feels like a breathless, hyper-speed rush through the farthest reaches of the galaxy, though the deeper, more evocative "Multivers" and fizzing "Shifty" are also top-notch. As debut EPs go, this is pretty darn good.
Review: Central Processing Unit's most recent album releases, from 96 Back, Noumen and Nullptr, were all incredible, so hopes are naturally high for this full-length from hip-hop beat-maker turned electro scene stalwart Paul Blackford. It is, unsurprisingly, rather good, with Blackford delivering a string of cuts that mix ear-pleasing analogue basslines (some squelchy, others more angular) with relaxed chords, shimmering synthesizer sounds, picturesque melodies and beats that are largely a lot more laidback than some of the punchy, sci-fi flavoured fare CPU has been putting out of late. Blackford's hip-hop roots can be heard in the swing of the beats, while the melodies and synth sounds used throughout are far warmer and woozier than the often cold and clinical choices associated with the more intergalactic end of the electro spectrum.
Review: The latest missive on Cultivated Electronics' limited-edition offshoot offers up a quartet of cuts from artists based in the Hague, all of whom had some associated with the now closed cold war bunker turned studio space and online radio station Onderwereld. Cosmox kicks things off via the snappy, bass-heavy electro beats, creepy synth chords and spacey bleeps of "Electrostress", before 543FF wraps mind-altering, acid-style lead lines and paranoia-inducing electronic noises around a sludgy beat on "Easy". Over on the flip you'll find two versions of 543FF, Star Kid and Gamma Intel collaboration "Three City Firm": the dark, foreboding and mind-altering original mix, and a more minimalistic - but arguably heavier - club electro revision from 543FF.
Cyberian Nights (Siberian Nights remix In Tribute To Twilight 22) (4:59)
Hologram People (6:40)
Review: Fundamental Records, the electro music label behind the 808 Box, Electric Eclectics and Music for The Other People Place project starts with a new project and new label called Electro Records and has made something of a statement with its first release, not only opting for a striking clear and white splatter patterned slab of wax, but also by securing the services of sometime CPU, Craigie Knowes and Biosoft Record producer Phillip Washington aka Cygnus. Do not forget Fundamental Records is the home of the Dallas producer with a full album in 2016, several EPs and tracks for the 808 Box and Electric Eclectics and the project MACHINE FUNK!... a triple album released only a few months ago. Cygnus rarely disappoints, and we can safely say he's delivered the goods here too. For proof, check the robotic, vocoder-laden deep space shuffle of "Hologram Killer", the lilting melodies and emotive, starry synths of "She Work All Night" and the canny combination of bubbly acid house and deep electro tropes that is "Hologram People". Elsewhere, "Cyberian Nights" doffs a cap to original '80s electro crew Twilight 22 and closing cut "Satisfaction" flits between crunchy dancefloor aggression and drifting-through-space deepness
Review: Hearse's third transmission is as strong as their previous two. It's a fine gathering of dark electro cuts from a varied but vital crew and starts up with Miami's Exzakt & BFX collaborating on the rough around the edges "Raw." Hamburg's Kluentah then goes hard with "Jungle Juice," which is frosted and tense, and then acid madness comes to the fore on Luke Eargoggle's "Olympia." Syncoatped kicks are pile don top of each other and freaky vocal apparitions appear on Amboss's closer "I Want To Live In My Car" making this a beguiling listen indeed.
Review: The 8th release on BLKMARKET MUSIC is the second part of Dystopian Future series on the label. Samuel Jabba, one of Bogota's finest locals, takes a more four on the floor approach with Dystopian Future Part II. We will let the music do the talking. We are thrilled to have this follow up EP as our next release.
Review: Following up the inaugural release by Tomassini which featured a remix from Hodge, newcomer Kilig (of club Night Tales) draws from London's dynamic underground sound for their first club-centric EP on Bath-based Origins Sound. If the progressive breaks of "Is It Time" was released over 20 years ago, it could well have been played by the likes of Sasha & Digweed. Also very much on a quintessentially British vibe is the post UK bass experiment of "VHS Flex", while the flip the fledgling producer show us their version of electro on the futuristic vibe of "Bed Test".
Review: The latest audio missive from Funkineven's Apron camp has been receiving a lot of heat, and it's easy to see why. In typical style, both tracks take classic boogie and '80s soul jams, impressively mangling them in distinctly different ways. Mighty Baron III's "Screwed" is a "chopped and screwed" masterpiece - a fusion of sludgy, slowed-down electrfunk loops, pitched-down vocals and wonky beatbox rhythms. It's distinctively odd, but really rather special. Flip for the Sun Runners' "The Finest", a smart and melodious S.O.S Band re-edit that's been pepped up with additional drum machine hits and special effects. It will do the business on both boogie and R&B dancefloors.
Review: Long-serving duo Morphology are the proud owners of one of the most on-point discographies in electro and IDM, though it should be noted that their releases have become far more sporadic in recent years. Here the Finnish pair make their first appearance on Exalt Records and, as expected, they've delivered a terrific EP. The headline attraction is undoubtedly "Quallia", a fine fusion of fizzing, Middle Eastern-influenced melodies, chugging bass, yearning string sounds and off-kilter electro drums. This is remixed twice on the flip. First John Shima gives the track a dreamy, sunrise-ready spin in his effortlessly emotive trademark style, before B12 man Steve Rutter re-imagines it as a melancholic slab of deep electro beauty. A fine EP is completed by "Flatlands", a melodic electro number with a subtly stargazing finish.
Review: Plant 43 is the quintessential electro stalwart, truly immersed in the sound and forever finding new realms of inspiration within the well-worn formula. Following the largely ambient The Countless Stones album on his newly minted label, the man known as Emile Facey now switches stance for some propulsive excursions that will keep his ardent followers more than satisfied. "Density Wave" splits the difference between ethereal pad moods and bruising machine funk, while "Dream Archive" keeps things sparse, deep and heavy. "21 Winters" piles on some of the most dramatic synth work we've heard from Facey in a hot minute, bringing serious levels of bombast to the electro arena and retaining that distinctive edge we expect from a Plant43 record.
Review: On his previous EPs and singles for the likes of Natural Sciences and Emotsiya, Vaseline Sunny Seppa AKA Sansibar has proved adept at delivering otherworldly, off-kilter electro that pairs icy melodies with warm chords, angular acid lines and beats that pop and crackle with giddy dancefloor intensity. "Targeted Individuals", his debut album, expands on this, in part by wrapping his futurist visions in emotive chord sequences, melancholic motifs and occasional bouts of paranoid intensity. It's a blueprint that guarantees far-sighted and ear-catching thrills, with the album's brazen club cuts - see the foreboding hustle of "My Mind" and deliciously Kraftwerkian "Body Rock" - being outnumbered by deeper, more contemplative compositions. Impressive.
Review: Also known as Stekke or STK Ensemble, the duo of STK had previously impressed with releases on Mentha and Olga LTD, and now they come to Sudd Wax with some of their most intriguing techno abstractions to date. "Senseless" has a steady groove at its heart, but the way this duo steer their machines has a free and expressive style that suggests heady improv sessions on outboard gear were behind this distinctive techno twist. If that sounds exciting already, hold tight for the daring, skittering patterns of "Jazzoriented", which shows how far drum machines can move from standardized beats when they're in the right hands. DJ SCSI takes the twitchy minimalisms of the original and injects it with a ghettotech energy that strangely suits the source material, completing a distinctive and daring 12".
Review: Although they would go on to become one of New York's most iconic hip-hop crews, the Ultramagnetic MC's were fresh-faced newcomers when they first popped up on Next Plateau Records - an imprint better-known for its proto-house and post-boogie releases - in 1986 with debut single "Ego Trippin". As this first ever seven-inch edition proves, it remains a stone cold classic: a heavy, stripped-back "golden era" gem in which the group's multiple MC's aim to get the party started over an iconic beat and weighty electronic bassline. As with the original version, it comes backed by flipside "Funky Potion", a scratch-happy, similarly constructed number full to bursting with effervescent rhymes, crunchy beats and distinctive bass.
Review: Bean grinding business from Sydney newcomer Unpin on brand new label from the Velodrome collective. Six tracks deep, each cut as springy and tightly coiled as the last, the well-oiled funk of "At Traction" kicks us off before the acidic "Bang Tool" takes us into bumping ghetto territory, "Calling You" is the essence of rave over razor-sharp two-step and "Itchy & Scratchy" goes straight for your mind and mushes it up good and proper. Elsewhere "Take 2" is a wonderfully wonky slab of bluesy UKG and "Kalimbo" closes the show on a dreamy jungle tip. What a crucial debut.
Review: Over the last six years, Toulouse twosome Zendid has offered up a swathe of singles for the likes of Infuse, Elephant Moon and Discobar that cannily blur the boundaries between tech-house, minimal and intergalactic electronic deepness. They continue to develop this trademark sound on debut album "In the Shell", a set rich in fuzzy (and funky) analogue-sounding basslines, dusty and glitchy beats, spaced-out synthesizer sounds and darting, off-kilter electronic riffs. While some others would have used the opportunity given by an album to showcase their eclecticism, the French pair have instead stuck to their guns and merely subtly twisted their quirky tech-house template. Given the quality of material on show, it was a wise move.
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