Review: Congratulations to Hypercolour, a label more renowned for its deep and bass-heavy house output, for coaxing a new album out of eccentric veteran Luke Vibert. Happily, Ridmik - the Cornish producer's sixth solo album under his given name, and first since 2009 - is rather good. Sitting somewhere between the deep, Metro Area-inspired synth disco of Vibert's Kerrier District project and his rougher, acid-tinged work, Ridmik ebbs and flows with attractive looseness. At times woozy and melodic (see the starburst melodies and lazy rhythms of "Six Eight" and smooth title track), at others ragged and twisted (the alien 303 funk of Proper Gander), Ridmik is an impressive set of analogue workouts dripping with synthesized soul. Recommended.
Jack U Whole (Space Dimension Controller 1988 Vibe mix)
Review: If you give Luke Vibert instructions to make an acid banger, chances are he'll come up with the goods. So it proves on Halloween, his second single for Cedric Maison's Hypercolour imprint. The title track is particularly intense, with in-your-face drums and ragged, abusive acid lines brushing shoulders with ghostly melodies, horror chords and dystopian vocal samples. The Cornishman provides a slight breather in the shape of "Jack U Whole", whose bubbling acid lines and murky vocal samples ride an 808 electro-influenced groove. Space Dimension Controller remixes the latter track, dropping a 1988 style acid jacker that sounds like a long lost Trax Records release.
Review: The tenth volume in Libertine's "Traditions" series comes from Luke Vibert, a producer who has consistently delivered brilliant music across a range of electronic styles for the best part of three decades. This time he's in full-on intergalactic electro mode, charging between the ghetto-tech influenced dancefloor assault of "iSocket", the pitched-down, hip-hop tempo shimmer of "iTeeth" - all crunchy machine drums, intergalactic chords and alien lead lines - and the bleeping eccentricity of rolling workout "iCandy". Arguably best of all, though, is closing cut "iWash", a deliciously tipsy and wayward mixture of undulating acid lines, off-kilter synth splashes and skittish electro beats that are far more weighty than they initially appear.
Review: Robin Ball's Memory Box builds on the success of early releases with a big new outing that features two of his own tracks and one from the legendary Luke Vibert. Memory Box is a party that has hosted Derrick Carer, Trevino and A Guy Called Gerald among others, and is a place to hear proper acid house. Ball himself is a master of the genre and most often released on his own Groovepressure label, having been making music since his teens. Now his latest labour of love is once again reaffirming his status as a vital voice in the UK scene. Luke Vibert has a rich history that makes him a key part of the UK's dance counterculture over the last 30 years. His always animated music is wild and inventive and comes on greats like Mo Wax, Warp and Planet Mu. Here he offers 'X to C', a wild melange of warped synth tones, grizzled basslines & acid flashes. It will twist and turn the dance floor inside out. Robin Ball's excellent 'Gripper' is a corrugated bit of electric house music that never sits still. Pensive pads in the background are offset by a busy lead synth line and old school stabs that make it a perfectly timeless, energetic fusion of moods and grooves. Lastly, Ball serves up 'The Edge,' a brilliantly brash cut with stepping acid sequences, raw drum work and warped bass that distills decades of UK music into one essential track. These are three devastating club cuts that expertly draw on the past, present and future of acid.