Review: Franck Collin, a.k.a. Fleck E.S.C, brings some excellent winter-time electro to the London-based label untitled (recs) for their third u(r)blue record.
The French-born, Tokyo-based producer has received praise from the likes of Jensen Interceptor, Dave Clarke, Laurent Garnier, and Helena Hauff.
This record takes cues from several sci-fi soundtracks, and taps into Fleck's wider thoughts on cinema. After having studied film and worked in movie production for several years, he believes that movies need to be a kind of fairy tale usually a poisonous one.
Likewise, u(r)blue003 delivers a capacious blend of texturesiat times delicate and expansive (e.g. 'Shelters', 'Skins & Scales'), at others assertive and grinding (e.g. 'KVFM, 'Roundup'). Together, this strikes a balance between deep club cuts and listening session tracks.
Thanks to the mastering of Aphex Twin-collaborator Beau Thomas, these textures really stand out. Listen loud!
Review: Lion & Lamb Records emerges from the London-based community of underground electronic heads orbiting the venue of the same name. Considering the quality of the events, you can drop the needle on this various artists joint safe in the knowledge the same high standards apply. V3000 is up first with the ear-snagging machine funk of "The Man Who Belongs To The Horizon", before Alex Celler drops in some utterly cheeky, wriggling micro house naughtiness to add some spice to the after party. Andre King brings things back to an electro tip for the edgy sci-fi noir of "Floating Sensation" and Unai Trotti restores the balance with some boisterous 4/4 bleep business.
Review: Constant Sound's electro arm, Infiltrate, calls upon the considerable talents and technical heft of London Modular Alliance for a bruising EP of body-popping exploration strapped to a tough n' funky beatdown. "Crack Fox" is as nervy and nimble as the title might suggest, while "Regular Customer" takes things in a hyper-detailed direction compatible with the kind of advanced machine funk you expect from Silicon Scally. "Blinky" follows suit with another artfully woven web of twitchy synth hooks and deftly sequenced drums, and then "Other Worlds" switches things up with some seriously hefty bass pressure pivoting around a dubstep attitude towards space and moodiness.
Review: The latest drop on Constant Sound's electro branch, Infiltrate, comes from wild-card Bristolian chameleon Borai. When he's not dropping tuff, jungle-hewed rave wreckers for Hotline and Higher Level he's collaborating with October on refined house bumpers or dread-filled noise excursions in Spiritflesh. As if that wasn't enough, here he is turning his hand to genuinely fresh twists on the electro formula - a breath of fresh air in a crowded marketplace. "Flutta" keeps things snappy and decidedly pacey, but the overall mood is really quite light, while on "Rashaba" things get much darker, to an almost theatrical degree. Some of that breakbeat ruffness sneaks in on "Runnin" and then a little garage swing offsets the dubbed out showers of melody and cheeky rave stabs on EP closer "Narroways". Stunning stuff.
Review: After the release on Helena Hauff's label Return To Disorder earlier this year, the Hamburg based producer turns to Eye For An Eye to release his awaited EP "Zerstore Eine Stadt". A well crafted piece divided in 5 different moments that portrait the mind state of L.F.T. living in an industrial city with mechanical and optimized routines. Sharing the A side is the punchy and muscular "Alles Was Du Hasst "and "Atomic Enigma", the last an introspective and misterious slow tempo ebm-ish piece. "Zersto?re Eine Stadt" featuring vocals from Rosaceae is an emotive piece expressed through distortion pedals, revealing the poetic side of rage and trauma. "I Don't Like Your Party" plays around a playfully sinister melody and charmingly offbeat vocals that give this track a unique groove. "Dead Rat Under The Table" cools the whole EP down, ending it as intense and mesmerazing as it started.
Review: Ferox welcomes the return of Alejandro Lopez's Hoax Believers for his second EP on the label. Following an EP for Spanish imprint Fanzine, Alejandro returns to Ferox with these four tracks of hi-tech funk, fusing Electro with the sound of Detroit via Madrid. Available on 180g vinyl only.
Review: Warmly welcoming Gacha Bakradze on Horoom, we share the work of a Georgian artist that has gained international recognition in the past years. Opening with "Elevate" the track stays true to its name: elevating melodies guiding through a jungle of beats. In a time where harder is better, Gacha Bakradze elegantly suggests a more minimalistic approach to the sound of electronic music. While "Toulouse" blends darker streams with aquatic hope, "Employee" enjoys a big drop in the middle, just to continue on a more melodic note. Well crafted music through and through, this EP combines the flavours of different genres without bending them.
Review: Following a well received string of releases on 'Analogical Force', 'Furthur Electronix' and 'Feel My Bicep' James Shinra makes his debut release on 20/20 Vision. Shinra displays his musical dexterity and diverse influences across this 4 track EP delving deeper into the realms of electro and technoA
'Route 909' serves up emotive melodies rooted down with a heavy kick before working the keys hard to maximum effect. 'Flyby' is a beautiful moment of electronic bliss reminiscent of the great Aphex Twin, while the acid soaked '1111' is a certified dance floor bomb. Shinra isn't adverse to switching tempos and beats and can also deliver flawless techno. The cleverly structured and melodically complex 'On & On' rounds up the wax with a track that makes you want to drift away on the dance-floor, prepare to be transported to a future world where machines have emotions.
Review: After taking time out to search for the right blend of carefully curated tracks, Bristol-based dancefloor futurists Innate return with a third multi-artist EP - shot through with melody, warmth and soul.
A quartet of timeless-sounding tracks full of stargazing sounds, undulating acid lines, far-sighted electronics and crackling beats, the A side kicks off with Perseus Traxx's "Drifting In Space": a loose-limbed exercise in analogue house deepness that wraps slowly shifting pads, meandering melodies and pulsating TB-303 motifs around broken house drums.
Welcoming Australian scene stalwart Ewan Jansen to the fray with "Sinders", he effortlessly blurs the boundaries between far-sighted, Motor City style techno and the kind of head-in-the-clouds analogue sounds that have always been his forte.
On the flip, Reedale Rise adds his touch with "Coral". In keeping with the brilliance of his 2018 debut album "Luminous Air", he drops a colourful, picturesque voyage into deep electro territory rich in ear-catching melodies, engaging chord sequences and crunchy machine percussion. To round, label co-founder Owain K returns with "Teifi", another ultra-deep treat: an enveloping, dancefloor excursion rich in fluttering lead lines, slowly expanding chords, vintage bass and punchy drums. A fitting conclusion to Innate's latest immaculate, eyes-closed voyage."
Review: We are proud to present another debut on Axces Records, this time from label head Alfredo92. The A side kicks off with Mimis, an explorative bass driven track with crisp snares and bubbling synthesizers. Next up is the title track Helfand, whose experimental sounds and textures take things in a mystic IDM like direction. On the B side we Adax_pcp, a hypnotic club cut which further explores complex pulsating outernational rhythms. Finally to seal the deal we have Scalex, a twisted dancehall tune with splashes of futuristic sound design.
Review: Distant Worlds HQ has tasked 4 sonic scientists, spaced intermittently throughout the earth, to each intercept a transmission on behalf of the electronic music community. Tagwell Woods steps up first with a mournful, melancholic but beautiful interpretation of hardware-based electronica. Castel unearths a track from the mid 90s telling of a progressive approach to acoustics. Flip over for a downtempo trip into the future past courtesy of label fave, Mihail P and HOLOVR tops this release off with an acidic excursion into an expanded state of consciousness.
Review: Some five months after his last outing - the decidedly experimental techno blast of "Simo" on Modal Analysis - Delta Funktionen returns via his first ever outing on Cultivated Electronics. The experienced producer hits the ground running with "Intrusion", an acid-flecked slab of spooky electro futurism, before dipping the tempo a little and reaching for some sparkling synthesizer lead lines on the laidback electro shuffle of "Moonstone Road". He does his best impression of "Computer World"-era Kraftwerk on the high-octane thrills of "GL_T2C_H3TR4", while "Siberian Surf" is a rock solid electro roller whose throbbing analogue bassline, clandestine electronic melodies and trippy effects make it sound faintly foreboding.
Review: Carl Finlow returns with a double vinyl 8 track album, following a prolific run of singles for Lone Romantic, Electrix, Craigie Knowes and Orson. Apparatus is a forward thinking album that reflects Finlow's return to live touring with many tracks hitting harder and darker, pushing his electro sound into new directions and soundscapes. Flawless production is something we have come to expect from Mr.Finlow yet he has managed to raise his game yet again with Apparatus. The album means business from the start, kicking off with the title track, 'Apparatus', a no-nonsense assault on the system with fast tight drum programming, heavily vocoded vocals and powerful synths. The pace continues on the record with 'Bind' and 'Carbon Deposits', Structure' but there are also pure electro cuts like 'Differential' and moody grooves in 'Ampere' and 'Viroids'.
Finlow has been on a staggering run of form and Apparatus continues this remarkable purple patch with a new lease of electro energy. It's not surprising that every credible electronic master on the planet from Weatherall and Craig Richards to Dixon and Maceo Plex are all fans of his work.
Review: If icy, robotic club electro is your thing, we'd recommend picking up this multi-artist EP from Luke Eargoggle's Stilleben Records imprint. Cygnus kicks things off with the sleazy hustle of "Download Her", a decidedly wonky but on-point number that comes complete with Egyptian Lover style spoken word vocals, before Kuldaboli delivers a funky, weighty and stripped-back club rocker rich in twisted acid bass, mind-altering noises and robotic club beats. Over on side B, Rodney weighs in with the up-tempo deep space rumble of "This Isn't Something I Want Anymore", whose acid style bassline is funky as hell (and twice as hot), while Naoamm channels the spirit of both Kraftwerk and Drexciya on the bleep-laden heaviness of "Telecommunication".
Review: Earlier in the year Pye Corner Audio's Martin Jenkins delivered an album of surprise melancholy that cannily joined the dots between dark ambient, John Carpenter movie soundtracks, synth-wave and melancholic experimental electronica. This time out he's exploring slightly different sonic pastures, offering up a quartet of cuts that deliver his pleasingly distinctive take on dancefloor-focused electro. He begins via the punchy electro rhythms and intergalactic electronic soundscapes of "Storm Cloud", before wrapping aggressive, off-kilter machine beats and raw bass in classic IDM melodies on "Solar Waves". "Darktro" is an impressive combination of mind-altering TB-303 style acid lines and TR-808 beats, while closing cut "Explorer" is the kind of warm but alien-sounding workout that would not sound out of place on a Drexciya album.
Review: The incredible Mesak returns to the label with more wonderful electronic delights. If you know your electronics then you'll know Mesak and his out put, if you don't then you really should take the time and get to know his unique and very special sounds
Review: Versalife's second release for 20/20 Vision sees Dutch producer Boris Bunnik aka Conforce return with another slab of signature electro.
'Clandestine Development' serves up dark tones and melodies layered within insistent electro beats and growling bass, that sounds huge on big room systems. 'Aegis' delivers a double dose of mechanical funk, played over atmospheric strings and auditory acid delights.
On the B side 'Lamba' continues to impress with a moody laidback bass line holding the groove down over a solid rhythm & dystopian keys. Wrapping things up the title track 'Asimov's Code' plays out like war drums from space pounding away after a blissful intro of building synths.
Review: Photonz is the alias of Marco Rodrigues a DJ, producer and driving force of Lisbon's underground scene. For little over a decade now, he's been crafting his own deeply personal style of Portuguese house and techno. As a DJ, Photonz grew a reputation for deep crates and intensely euphoric sets and in 2017, together with Violet (co-founder at his Radio Quantica) and Lisbon's own Rabbit Hole collective, he started the now infamous Mina parties - a monthly, sex-positive, queer and intersectional-feminist techno party aimed at using the dissociative potential of intense raving to create a temporary space of suspension away from patriarchal expectations.
'Nuit' is Photonz's debut album and a simultaneous reference the Egyptian Goddess of the Stars or Night. Marco was really swept away by the concept of 'freedom of form under the night sky', the accepting embrace of Nuit. Ancestral, but also socially advanced and utopian; a deification of the night time. These ideas manifest themselves as eleven songs spread across two LPs that wax and wane like the moon. Photonz channels early techno, Drexciyan rhythms, balearic & atmospheric house; layering sounds, creating moments. All songs have been mastered by George Horn at Fantasy Studios in Berkeley. The vinyl comes housed in a royal blue and neon yellow jacket with duality/birth symbolism and trance-hieroglyphs designed by Eloise Leigh. Each copy includes a glow-in-the-dark sticker and a postcard with notes
Review: The Hong Kong based Homesick team are back with their yearly release of quality reworks that has made the label sought after since their first release back in 2014. For the 7th opus they've worked with Indonesian artist Jonathan Kusuma (Previously on Cocktail D'Amore and I'm a Cliche) for two reworks that have been thoroughly tried on Asia's dance floors for the past two years.