Review: Following up 2016's Kyoto EP on ESP Institute, here is the return of Cleveland. Interestingly enough he's not from the midwest USA but in-fact from Luxembourg (with Italian roots) and based in Brussels. His music isn't nearly as confusing though; on the contrary "Tusk" simply sounds like 'oriental electro' (if we've heard such a thing) even more than Japanese Telecom would. B side cut "Aku" equally borrows from Detroit bass aesthetics, yet crosses over into minimal techno - albeit unintentionally we assume - grooving much like current sounds of the Berlin underground as heard on labels like Time Passages or Libertine. A.E. Mancini has released previously on other fine imprints such as Hivern Discs and Oskar Offermann's White.
Review: In a 2010 interview, Tornado Wallace explained the inspiration behind his distinctive title as "something between a deep south blues artist or a logger from Nebraska". In subsequent years the Australian has seemingly swapped the south blues artist for something southern Italo, keeping the Nebraskan edge with his logger's beard. This is demonstrated in wondrous fashion on the water-coloured artwork to Thinking Aloud, his debut EP for Lovefingers' ESP Institute. Heavy bass plods switch to a walking bassline in "Bit One", as motorised and starry arpeggios weave between breathy vocals that are as much human as they are synthesised. This is complemented by "Cloud Country" which lowers in BPM with more Italo inspired arpeggios, pulsating toms and sprinklings of Latin sounding synths. The title track "Thinking Allowed" hogs the flip, slowly revealing itself to be a Balearic burner of the highest calibre. It opens with an analogous kick-snare combo and a "higher-self" spoken word spiel that's reminiscent of Will Powers legendary "Adventures In Success". Peaks come; troughs go as the track builds sublimely before dovetailing back to its original form. Welcome back sir!
Review: Gifted Culture Collective member and occasional S. Moreira collaborator Xinner has decided to inaugurate a new alias, Robotron, via a first EP for ESP Institute. The man-machine's first missive, "Dream Resonator", is rather delightful, and sees him warp chiming, crystalline synthesizer melodies and glassy-eyed IDM style chords around an inventive and entertaining rhythm track that sits somewhere between Drexciya style electro and jazz-fired broken beat. The same rhythmical dexterity is also at the heart of similarly rush-inducing flipside "Ice", where bolder melodies and chunkier bass catch the ear alongside some suitably futurist electronics.
Review: Amsterdam-based graphic designer turned producer Young Marco has previously shown hints of greatness, most notably with a pair of superb 12" singles on ESP Institute that layered picturesque melodies atop huggable analogue grooves. Here, he delivers his debut album, Biology, and it's every bit as warm, imaginative and luscious as his previous work. Each of the album's seven tracks is something of a gem, from the crystalline, new age house of "Sea World" and Vangelis Katsoulis-inspired ambience of "Out of Wind", to the Italo-influenced dancefloor pulse of "Suzaku" and rush-inducing, synth-heavy brightness of "Can You Really Feel It". It's one of those albums that will brighten up even the dreariest of days, and those sets are arguably few and far between.