Review: Laurel Halo's latest release was apparently inspired by her recent film score work for Amsterdam-based arts collective Metahaven. Certainly, it's a largely becalmed and beguiling collection, experimental in ethos but also cinematic in tone. It contains a sextet of instrumental pieces that vary in style and tone from the loopy, otherworldly creepiness of "The Sick Mind" and droning "Supine", where ambient chords and manipulated cello notes combine to create a druggy soundscape, to the slowly unfurling, widescreen epics that open and close the mini-album. These, particularly "Raw Silk Uncut Wood" are intensely picturesque and beautiful, with Halo subtly shifting between epic ambient passages and the kind of sweeping, string-laden musical movements that mark out the finest cinematic compositions.
Review: Fresh from delivering a fine album of experimental electronics for Further Records (the ambient leaning Hyperboreal), Manuel Fogliata pops up Parisian imprint Latency with a pleasingly varied four-tracker. As if to emphasize his techno roots, he begins with something big and heavy - the pulsating rhythm, fluttering deep space electronics and hypnotic dancefloor intensity of "OK Face". Fogliata further proves his techno credentials with the rather brilliant "Morning Loving", a decidedly picturesque chunk of ambient techno that's both danceable, and aesthetically pleasing. Elsewhere, he pauses for a breather via the delay-laden beauty of ambient cut "Aphrobite", and wanders into trippy modular synthesizer territory on the beat-less "M_Animal".