Review: Gruth incorporates pitch black and aggressive textures into his sonic palette. Incorporating techno, ambient and industrial, but mainly rooted in the Nordic darkness of metal - this is the experimental music project of Juha Puupera. Drawing further influence from UK sound system culture and Italian 'Giallo' of the '70s, he's joined by homeboy Hannu Ikola (Subself/Ether) who is a techno DJ and producer on this EP. It features the grinding and guttural sludge techno deconstruction of "Severely Decomposed" and "Disgorged Viscera" on the A side. The pitch black techno of "Ke Jawenan Deserration" and the haunting dark ambient soundscape "Futile Demise" where Gruth is joined by Helsinki-based violinist and sound designer KuJo.
Review: REPRESS ALERT: Gravity Graffiti has been doing great things with its series of split 12"s already, but now the Italian label goes one better for its tenth release with this mighty double pack of heavy hitters. First up is the ever-untouchable Yoshinori Hayashi, who gets as straight up as he possibly could with the freaky house burner "Dissociative." Telephones is feeling particularly dubbed out and groovy on "Kalimbalimbo", while DB.Source and Riccardo Schiro take things strung out and textural on "Montevago". Dynamo Dreesen is in rave mode for the pepped up and delightfully weird "Reactivate", leaving the final side to Oyvind Morken & Kaman Leung's chugging "Tunnel Visjon" and the rubbery side swipes of Acidboychair's "The End (At Any Speed)".
Review: It's always good to see a split release from two artists whose track records (no pun intended) make it very difficult to predict where the new wares will fit. Which is exactly the case with this one, given K15's oeuvre name-checks imprints like Wotnot Music, Eglo and Wild Oats, while SMDB has appeared on Funkineven's Apron and the always great Lo Recordings in recent years. Needless to say, then, if we can rely on one thing it's that everything on this expansive, obscure collection of curveballs will be deep and richly textured. From 'Pace & Time''s downtempo barroom jazz, to the shuffling broken beats and waves of synth on 'Dry Mango (Part 2)', the confusing beat structures and delicate piano play of 'Earth State' to 'Syntherlude''s beat-less, science fiction tune up, it's all well made stuff.
Review: Kimochi Sound introduces a new artist for their 30th release. This debut record is all deep beats and breaks and it's full of the fuzzy feels and swollen atmospheres we've come to expect from the imprint. It's a bit of a mini album, moving from Ilian Tape techno influences to a closing number reminiscent of Ulrich Schnauss.
Review: Kalbata is a delightfully unpredictable fellow, one minute turning out slick tech house with Guy Gerber and the next starting a dancehall riot with Warrior Queen. His long and varied career continues following a recent spot on Optimo Trax with this first 12" on Brush & Broom, a new label that is housing some particularly straight up 4/4 jams from the prolific producer. "Obskuur" has a clue in the name, plying a trade in the kind of furtive deep techno that ekes tension out of the most ambivalent of crowds with its oh-so-slow but powerful sense of progression. "Rumoured" has a broader palette, letting undulating threads of melodic synth work slither around the subby, minimal percussion.
Review: The Berlin-based artist occasionally known as Opal Sunn makes his debut on Utopia with this alluring six track EP. Laced with a touching, restrained and emotional feel throughout "Olson Waters" sets the tone with its beatless framework and gently cascading arrangements while "Hidden Tropics" adds a little momentum with soft rolling beats, drifting pipes and rising chords that sound reminiscent of Reduction era Art Of Noise. "Bells Of Ukyo", "Birds Of Bahia" and "Quiet Dawn" build on the ambient thread with Foly sound and deep meditative textures while a beatless take on "Hidden Tropics" closes the show with poignancy. Stunning.
Review: In advance of release, Diagonal and Elon Katz have been particularly mysterious when it comes to the contents of The Human Pet. Instead of the usual press release, they simply emailed journalists a bizarre list of "care instructions" for said mythical companion. Katz, who rose to prominence as part of Streetwalker and White Car, is something of a bombastic, electronic eccentric, and The Human Pet is ostensibly a pop album dragged through several hedges backwards. Expect impassioned, stylized vocals, twisted boogie synths, scattergun electronics, bizarre beats, breakcore style cut-up madness, and crusty special effects. Oh, and discernible nods to EBM, industrial and Autechre.
Review: Chris Weeks has been building up the Kingbastard catalogue for a long time now, generally taking a self-reliant approach in the underground electronica scene where CD-r releases reign supreme. He's been a key figure on Ambidextrous since the label launched back in 2008, and now he's committed to wax with a range of crunched up leftfield sonics for the machine-loving crowd. "Anxiety" is a melodic cut with a house-minded structure, but there's a lot of production acrobatics and compositional swerves taking place within this framework. "Scatterbrain" is more overtly out there, tapping up the kind of heavily processed sounds that producers like Paradroid have championed in the past. "Data_Loss" strike a heavy blow somewhere between dubstep and electro, and "Data_Ctrl" ups the tempo for a rabble-rousing exercise in mind-bending machine music.
Review: Started in 2013, Mollusca Vinyl is a Brooklyn based electronic reocrd label specializing in minimal style, analog laden music. Our folks believe in pushing the vinyl medium as art. This set of compositions has been described as Balearic downtempo with pastoral departures. Written while on several beaches, it suggests the definition of lackadaisical make out music, emoting euphoric post pillow talk feelings-of-the-raw through minimalist synth phrasing, ambient texturing and isolated beats. Artwork by Doroniyam at Azuri Cafe. Mastered by Jason at Transition Mastering UK. Printed at Brooklyn Phono.
Review: If you have a serious interest in Italo-disco, you should already be aware of Kirlian Camera. For the uninitiated, Angelo Bergamini's band was founded in 1980, and has been a constant presence on the Italian music scene ever since. "Helden Platz" was originally released in 1987, and is one of the standout moments in their bulging discography. Full of Cold War-era paranoia, the A-side extended version is dark, gothic and stylish, with impassioned female vocals riding body-popping machine drums, moody chords and a mind-altering arpeggio bassline. On the flip you'll find the notably different 7" version, and the gripping dark ambient of "Burial".
Review: Helms's Alter label is the latest to be seduced by the Primitive Languages of New York-based Nick Klein, whose brash industrialisms have previously featured on Entro Senestre's BANK, German labels MMODEMM and Unknown Precept and cult US tape crew Ascetic House. The Lonesome Dealer features some wonderfully evocative track titles ("Christian Rock Concert" and "Pain Resource Management") and continues Klein's grotty amalgamation of techno rhythms with the powerful sonic impact of noise traditions. If you have been enjoying the output of Beau Wanzer or Maoupa Mazzocchetti recently you should certainly check this 12" out! The Cabaret Voltaire gone Reggaeton of lead track "Chats with Lucy" and the deranged abstraction of B-side opener "Do You Want To Crash?" are particular highlights.
Review: Anton Klint first came to our attention thanks to a handful of EP's that he dropped on Munich's Public Possession label, but while we were already big fans of the imprint's work, it was Klint's singular take on house and disco that attracted us. This latest two-tracker comes via Sweden's IDEAL label, and the producer offers something a little darker and more experimental compared to his previous escapades. "Personalmote" is a fuzzy, broken tune that verges on house but never quite fully rids itself of a tribal, stepping kind of vibe. On the other hand, "Efter Stangning" churns and drives away at a more classic deep house level, but Klint nevertheless injects a noticeable layer of something altogether more exotic. Twisted, dystopian house beats would be the best way to some this up.
Review: With this release, WOW Signal Records presents a modern view on bass oriented electronic music. From Russian producer Cyberworm's "Breath Slow" (future garage), Kontext's dub techno epic "Doubling Theory (Meteors)" to the techstep of Melotronics' "Launch Pad" and Diagram's leftfield drum & bass on "Orbital Collapse". These genres are united by a uniform deep sound of the planet. They even released it on vinyl, because they are intent on spreading the music that makes them vibe with other bass lovers the world over.
Review: Vester Koza has remained quiet as of late but he's back with his singular brand of deep house on his own Maslo imprint. While his previous 12"s were coated in a relatively upbeat and funked-out flavour, the PRISN EP feels darker, more expansive and ethereal, where Koza prefers the use of drones and abstract electronics as a base for his grooves. "Deciveid", for example, takes a broken, hypnotic beat and places it over subtle twists of noise, whereas "Bind_Dream_Service" is slow, jagged and lacking of a 4/4 beat...it's Vester Koza's industrial side coming out to play.