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Techno Recommendations Best Of 2013

Juno Recommends Techno

Juno Recommends Techno

Techno Recommendations Best Of 2013
4 Dec 2013
Cat: MPM 16LP. Rel: 06 Jul 15
  1. Let's Ride
  2. Change
  3. Never Grow Old
  4. Eclipse
  5. Higher!
  6. Confess
  7. Chord Principle
  8. Above The Clouds
Review: Paradise sees minimal Detroit techno icon Robert Hood exploring the Floorplan concept in more expansive style. The Floorplan project was founded in the mid '90s, as Hood looked to merge his minimalist approach with elements of house, disco, funk and gospel. Explored intermittently over a six year period, Hood put it to one side and it was a reissue of the Floorplan debut by Rush Hour that inspired him to revisit the project in 2011, scoring a bonafide gem in "We Magnify His Name". Explored in album format here, Paradise is a mixture of all new material and tracks culled from these recent M Plant 12" releases, lending the album a sense of continuity. It's all the more impressive when you consider the fact Hood's been releasing one highly conceptual album a year since 2009.
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out of stock $26.29
Cat: WOEVIL 02. Rel: 12 Aug 13
  1. Intro
  2. Ignorant
  3. In The Grid
  4. Outro
Review: With their first team-up on Wild Oats still on heavy rotation, the Funkinevil pairing of Kyle Hall and FunkinEven return for another quartet of tracks combining some of the finest young minds of Detroit and London. Following an arpeggiated intro that sets the scene with its vocoder vignette, "Ignorant" provides a heavy-set piece of machine funk with some serious swing in its step; "In The Grid" meanwhile injects some serious Motor City soul into proceedings with a combination of sweeping pads and raw drum machine beats, leading into the enveloping analogue wash of "Outro". More fire from the Funkinevil guys - don't sleep.
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out of stock $9.64
Cat: CBX 008. Rel: 13 May 13
  1. Prowler
  2. Another Body
  3. Exhibit
  4. Send The Dogs
  5. Shaper Of The Unknown
  6. Track 6
out of stock $10.20
Cat: SYNCRO 13. Rel: 07 Jan 13
  1. Undescribed1 (Multi)
  2. Undescribed2 (She's Blank)
  3. Undescribed3 (Execute)
Review: The 13th release for France's Syncrophone Records sees Strength Music boss producer DJ Qu step up for three tracks of seductively deep techno. The A-side sees "Undescribed 1 (Multi)", consisting of little more than a brushed kick and hi-hat combo which slowly moves into a breathy combination of abstract vocal and swirling dub chords. On the flip, "Undescribed 2 (Blank)" provides a more driving number, combining a hypnotic bass pulse with rustling percussion and subtle piano flourishes buried within, while "Undescribed 3 (Execute)" provides the record's finest production, a tracky combination of cut-up stabs and subtle marimba tones guaranteed to set any floor alight
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out of stock $9.39
  1. OG Anthem
  2. OG Anthem (Amir Alexander Guerilla Soul rework)
  3. Listen Up
  4. VLCTY
Review: Leeds burgeoning vinyl only label Albion Records is ready to follow up the success of their debut EP from Fabio Monesi with three new tracks from De Sluwe Vos. The fast rising Dutchman is a staple on his local Amsterdam scene and plays clubs like Studio 80 and many big festivals with his impressive live show. The EP comes with a remix from hotter than hot Chicago talent Amir Alexander. First up, 'OG Anthem' is a muscular house banger with monstrous kick drums, heavily filtered, darkened male vocals and plenty of steely synth work. Its eerie yet ravey, brutal like a Martyn beat but swung to perfection. Amir Alexander's 'Guerrilla Soul Re Werk' is a sympathetic rework of the original that comes imbued with plenty of deep space sci-fi vibes and plenty of the Chicagoan's trademark percussion. On the flip, 'Listen Up' is another forceful jam with driving, rubbery kick drums underpinning plenty of taught synth basslines and icy hi hats. It's raw, fully hardcore deep house as is last cut 'VLCTY', which pings and punches down below as darting vocal cries shoot out of the tough groove to bring a sense of micro-funk. Searching, apocalyptic synths constantly roam down below and once again the track showcases De Sluwe Vos's ability to make beefy bangers with plenty of charm.
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out of stock $7.51
Cat: JEALOUSGOD 01. Rel: 03 Jun 13
  1. Siglo 1
  2. Siglo 2
  3. Siglo 3
  4. Siglo 4
Review: Silent Servant and Svreca engage as SS/S for the debut release on Jealous God, a new multi-purpose project from the collective minds of Karl O' Connor, James Ruskin and Juan Mendez himself. Intended for the "mutants of our age", Jealous God could possibly fill the void left by the end of Sandwell District, arriving as yet another offshoot of the spiralling Downwards Empire with ambitions significantly higher than the average hand stamped white label techno operation. Described by the label as an 'issue' as opposed to simple release, the Sicario de Dios 12? presents a suite of four "Siglio's" from Silent Servant and Svreca accompanied by a bespoke art-zine. Musically, both sides of the 12" see Mendez and Svreca pair a short beatless production with a more expansive, dead eyed techno production that will appeal to Semantica fans.
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out of stock $9.93
Cat: MPM 10. Rel: 09 Sep 13
  1. Living It Up
  2. Wall To Wall
Review: ** FLOORPLAN REPRESS ** Not content with releasing one of this year's best techno albums under his own name, Detroit producer Robert Hood turns his focus to his Floorplan alter ego. While it may not enjoy the same profile as Hood side-projects like The Vision and Monobox, it does provide an alternative to his repetitive metallic techno. Indeed, the title track is a jacking house workout centred on a disco loop and the chugging train sounds sampled so memorably on Telex's 'Moscow Disko'. 'Wall to Wall' is more in keeping with Hood's trademark techno, but here too, the harsh snares and ominous, prowling bassline are offset by a filtered disco groove.

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out of stock $9.12
  1. I Don't Need It
  2. Late Night Dungeon Jam
  3. I Don't Need It (Rivet remix)
  4. I Don't Need It (DJ Fett Birger remix)
Review: Direct out of deepest Neukolln emerges Z O D I A C 4 4. Rusty, broken and cantankerous we spill forth our first ever release with Dungeon Acid at the helm. Dungeon Jams sees the Swedish producer summon madness from the depths of his mind and unleashes it on the world via his Computerriddimdrummachiner and the Analoguewavecombosignalizer. Aboard the pirate ship are fellow Viking RIVET (Skudge/Kontra) and Nordic saint DJ FETT BURGER (Sex Tags Mania/Sex Tags UFO) with both bringing their own inimitable and unparalleled sonic grooves to the battleground. ZAQUA is the first of 12 releases. One for each sign of the stars and then Z O D I A C 4 4 is forever dead and gone. Forever.
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out of stock $7.51
Cat: DYSTOPIAN 003. Rel: 18 Mar 13
  1. Liberia
  2. Cleric
  3. EC10
  4. Equilibrium
Review: ** Re(condite)press ** Ever a reliable source of restrained and chilling excursions into experimental techno, Recondite steps up to the burgeoning Dystopian label and brings a selection of tracks that fit the labels implied ethos like a glove. "Liberia" in particular stalks on a broken beat that is just barely audible underneath the clangs and decays of delicate industrial noises, exorcising all manner of minimal demons to an uneasy end. "Cleric" is more forthcoming with a solid 4/4 rhythm and a heartfelt arpeggio but still the vibe is quite a bleak one. "EC10" gets no sunnier, instead pitting morbid synth notes against each other while the rhythmic elements tick into the mix progressively with a healthy amount of weight behind them. "Equilibrium" rounds proceedings off with another study of planting melancholic moods within sterile textures, while those quiet but perfectly pitched drums provide the necessary framework.
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out of stock $9.93
Cat: MPM 11. Rel: 09 Sep 13
  1. Alpha (James Ruskin remix)
  2. The Family
out of stock $9.12
Cat: MOTE 037. Rel: 16 Sep 13
  1. No Exit
  2. Undertow
  3. Nanendi
Review: After the recent announcement of a forthcoming L.B Dub Corp album, Luke Slater's other alias, Planetary Assault Systems, provides its first transmission of 2013. Fans of "Bell Blocker" from PAS' stellar The Messenger album from 2011 will instantly warm to the cold chimes of "No Exit", while pink noise cushions the brooding, pitch-dark groove of "Undertow". Slater then introduces agitated mind games on the EPs inner B-side with "Nanendi", which sounds like a school of crickets trapped in a haunted cathedral of distant Gregorian chant.
out of stock $9.12
Cat: COR 04. Rel: 08 Jul 13
  1. Splitting Particles
  2. Tube Compression
  3. Storm Clouds
  4. State Of No State
Review: Founded last year, Anthony Parasole's label The Corner has seemingly not been content with sticking to one style thus far, covering deep house from DJ Qu, hip-hop from Nor'Easter, and techno from Parasole himself, Phil Moffa and a recent industrial turn from Shawn O'Sullivan. This latest releases sees the label return to the deeper echelons of the East Coast underground with the BQE EP from the man Fred P which fits in with The Corner ethos by covering a variety of styles. Opening track "Splitting Particles" is the most surprising cut here, running through robust, hi-resolution techno of the Ostgut Ton variety, though the improvised keys of "Tube Compression", hypnotic backdrop of "Storm Clouds" and mid-tempo bounce of "State Of No State" will please dedicated fans of Peterkin's style.
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out of stock $11.00
Cat: EAUX 491. Rel: 10 Jun 13
  1. Waterfall (Lucy remix)
  2. Waterfall (Birth)
  3. Shrouds
Review: The enigmatic Rrose returns with the monolithic sounds of Waterfall Variations, the first Eaux transmission of 2013. Since debuting on the Sandwell District label in 2011 with the Primary Evidence EP, Rrose's Herculean brand of techno has offered a new take on the big room style. The Waterfall Variations EP sees Rrose return to "Waterfall", a track that featured on the 2011 Sandwell District classic Merchant Of Salt, offering an early, previously unreleased variation entitled "Waterfall (Birth)", as well as inviting Stroboscopic Artefacts boss Lucy to remix the original with brooding results. There's every chance "Waterfall (Birth)" will fill many of Europe's festival speakers this summer, while Lucy's remix is more suited to the club, toning down the flamboyance of Rrose's electrifying synths. "Shrouds" sees Rrose merge both the menace of his Sandwell District releases with gnashing spells of harsh electronic manipulations.
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out of stock $8.32
Cat: NONPLUSLP 004PLATE4. Rel: 01 Apr 13
  1. Joy Orbison - "Big Room" (tech house DJ tool - TIP!)
  2. Kassem Mosse - "IP Mirrors"
Review: Although this fourth Think & Change plate features the esteemed Kassem Mosse, whose "IP Mirrors" is a suitably creepy piece of whirring, stumbling techno, adorned with intricately textured synth textures, it was only ever going to be about the A-side. Joy Orbison's Hardwax-referencing "Big Room Tech House DJ Tool Tip!" has being doing damage in clubs for several months now, and anyone who's heard it on a suitable system will know how its wonky low-end and unexpectedly brilliant vocal sample have the tendency to turn your knees to jelly. This track is not available digitally - don't sleep!
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out of stock $8.58
Cat: AVN 008. Rel: 25 Feb 13
  1. Cold Light (Sektor A)
  2. Cold Light (Sektor B)
Review: Expert attention to detail across all visual and sonic elements is present and correct once again on this sick release from the Avian nest. Label co-founder Shifted is at the helm, presenting the first of a two part Cold Light series; "Cold Light Sektor A" is all about the contrast between elements as the near incandescent lightness of those dubby chords battles with the growing weight of Shifted's sludgy rhythmic arrangements. Complementing this, "Sektor B" opts to burrow down a plinking locked groove making it a perfect DJ tool.
out of stock $8.05
Cat: TRESOR 260. Rel: 01 Apr 13
  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3
  4. 4
Review: Tresor chalk up a whopping 260 releases with Sleeparchive's A Man Dies In The Street Part 1. Roger Semsroth has always constructed dense techno from minimal means: dusty white noise, a handful of bleeps, solid drums and simple sequences melded into new forms by heavy doses of repetition and austere atmospherics created from the waste products of cycling parts. Spooky bleeps only make up the even half of the EP, with "2" dinging endlessly like a quantised but malfunctioning train crossing, while "4" sees Semsroth inject more life into his short wrung tonal bursts. "1" and "3" however are the remit of ringing metrical's, with Sleeparchive seemingly paying homage to Regis' mid '90s style of hard and grubby techno, similar to "He/1" and "He/2".
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out of stock $11.79
Cat: SFTDX 001. Rel: 13 May 13
  1. Untitled 1
  2. Untitled 2
  3. Untitled 3
  4. Untitled 4
Review: Although Michigan is well inland from the North Atlantic Ocean, it doesn't mean Detroit can't make techno for the high seas or uncharted waters. Terrence Dixon's Lost At Sea 12" for the Surface label founded by Nick Dunton and the late Richard Polson sees four tracks of "Untitled" Detroit techno traverse through a sonic field of Joey Anderson and DJ Qu house drums, while saw-wavey Drexciyan qualities and Jeff Mills techno loops also circulate the EP. A deep and heady 12" of U-boat rhythmics for the techno underground.
out of stock $8.05
  1. Voices From The Lake - "Reptilicus" (feat Donato Dozzy)
  2. Mike Parker - "Mnajdra" (Shifted remix)
  3. Stanislav Tolkachev - "Heartbeat"
Review: In what could be the biggest techno release of 2013 so far, Geophone delivers a rarely seen VA package, with Mike Parker only appearing in remixed form. Donato Dozzy and Neel's revered Voices From The Lake collaboration supply their first release outside of Prologue with some throbbing brain pulses in "Reptilicus" - much harder sounding than their album material. Shifted's remix to Parker's "Mnajdra" is outrageously Berghain-centric, as mechanically mutated insect buzzes hammer away to scraping and suctioned percussion. Ukrainian artist Stanislav Tolkachev, who is making a name for himself since his track "Building Peaks" on Developer's Modularz settles into Geophone's 19th release with his usual frenetic pace, this time employing thudding drums and melancholic atmospheres likened to Aphex Twin's more emotional material.
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out of stock $10.73
Cat: RB 043. Rel: 23 Mar 15
Deep House
  1. Spaceg
  2. Happy Sunday (Maurice Fulton mix)
  3. We Don't Know
  4. 80's Drugs
Review: Gerd Janson and Maurice Fulton continue their mutually beneficial partnership with this Running Back 12" edition of DJ Nori's wonderful Bubbletease debut We Don't Know. Originally released digitally earlier this summer, Nori's four tracks were co-produced by Fulton and, as with anything that blessed with Maurice's touch, are predictably excellent. There's a touch of melancholic, acid-flecked stargazing in the shape of "Spaceg" (all heady synth melodies, fuzzy bass and 808 cowbells), some out-there, beatless space calypso (the unwieldy "We Don't Know"), and a mighty chunk of Syclops-ish wonk-jack ("80s Drugs"). Oh, and a moody, Detroit-influenced Fulton remix of "Happy Sunday" that breaks into a space disco jam near the end.
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out of stock $9.93
Cat: ANDROMEDA 003. Rel: 29 Apr 13
Minimal/Tech House
  1. Biatac
  2. Lamartine
Review: The gap between what is acceptable minimal and tech house is being made even greater thanks to a new wave of producers hailing from the far reaches of Eastern Europe. One label championing this finely tuned and dub-tinged sound is the mysterious Andromeda imprint, which debuts newcomer Sepp. What makes "Biatac" so good is its less-is-more approach and deft usage of reverb - harking back to Kalon's "Haiku" on Sandwell District. On the flip is "Lamartine", a cut which really defines this eastern European sound; flat beats, plateaus grooves, sparse sonics and creepy ambience.
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out of stock $12.61
Cat: AUTO 015. Rel: 30 Sep 13
  1. OCH - "Scammell" (Jay Bliss remix)
  2. OCH - "Scammell" (original mix)
  3. Jay Bliss - "Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus" (OCH remix)
  4. Jay Bliss - "Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus" (original mix)
Review: OCH has a strong pedigree of collaborations with fellow underground stalwart Jay Bliss the latest to share space on a Autoreply record with the label boss. Bliss should be known to many as the co-owner of Electrique Boutique alongside Markus Homm, for a long time the only vinyl outlet in Romania, and his discography makes for impressive reading these days. Recent times have seen Mr Bliss share record space with the likes of Skudge and Petre Inspirescu on respected imprints like 20:20 Vision, All Inn, Hudd Traxx and Fear Of Flying. AUTO 015 kicks off with a bouncy rework of OCH's "Scammell" from Bliss featuring sub-aqua sound-scapes and sonar blips on an instantly playable US inspired groove. OCH's original has a distinctly liquid approach possibly referencing the work of LTJ Bukem and Good Looking over techno framework. Jay's main offering "Men Are From Mars" is sexy controlled acid which OCH shifts up a gear for peak time floor-play layering the original TB303 patterns to thundering climax. Road-tested on Eleven Club, Tokyo's Alpha System's custom speakers.

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out of stock $6.43
Cat: DN 57. Rel: 05 Aug 13
  1. Madwoman
  2. River Mumma
  3. Eat Them Like Bread
  4. Inchantment
Review: Madwoman makes for a suitably chaotic Downwards debut from William Bennett's Cut Hands project. Bennett has been making music as Cut Hands since 2011, introducing the world to the project with the album Afro Noise I, a confrontational record that joined the dots between African rhythms, the percussive minimalism of Steve Reich and the industrial techno of Regis. Last year saw Cut Hands grace the like-minded Blackest Ever Black with Black Mamba, a two track 12" that was the precursor to a second album of the same name released later in 2012 on Bennett's own Susan Lawly label. Having featured on Karl O'Connor's label previously in the form of a remix of fellow sonic terrorist Russell Haswell, Madwoman fits right in with the current Downwards direction; the title track is a particularly potent example of the point where industrial music and techno merge chaotically.
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out of stock $7.51
Cat: PN 22. Rel: 05 Aug 13
  1. Truss - "Redbrook" (Fred P reshape)
  2. Massimo Di Lena - "You Better Hear" (XDB remix)
Review: Had it not been for Prime Numbers there's every chance the world would have never seen the unlikely combination of Fred P remixing UK techno maximum Truss. In his remix, Fred P changes the drums to something more rolling and a drapes thick layer of filter over Truss' "Redbrook" - creating something typically deep and ethereal in comparison to the original. XDB supplies a murky, yet silky smooth remix to Massimo Di Lena's "You Better Hear", again taken from the PN17 EP. XDB does away with the original's vocal and makes the gurgle acid line the focus of his remix, mellowing things even further by introducing lighter chords and ambient pads.
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out of stock $7.51
Cat: MEAN 023. Rel: 03 Jun 13
  1. So It Goes
  2. Tralfamadore
  3. Saturation
  4. Neap
  5. Mina
  6. Hunt Or Herd?
Review: Analogue Mapping sees Meanwhile founder Robert Lawrence return to production duties as Bovill in requisite fashion after a four year absence. In this time Lawrence has focused on establishing the London label as a worthy outlet for the deeper echelons of techno with material from Murmur, Sven Weismann, Bvdub and Conforce. Spread luxuriously across two slabs of vinyl, the six tracks allow Bovill to make room for soothing, dubby moments that ease you in as well as productions characterised by their driving drum and chord arrangements. See the spine tingling opener "So It Goes" for evidence of the former whilst "Neap" and "Hunt Or Herd?" provide perfect examples of the latter.

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 in stock $7.51
Cat: LIES 024. Rel: 27 May 13
  1. White Owl
  2. The Fast Lane
  3. Drop Dead
Review: Operating at a speed of releases that shouldn't be possible with your label boss is in the midst of a 3 month European tour, the LIES juggernaut spits out its latest slab of essential, grizzled floor weaponry in the shape of this White Owl EP from Delroy Edwards. This three track release maintains the high BPM trajectory of Edwards previous LIES transmissions, with the A Side title track a rugged, heads down DJ tool that could feasibly have been lifted from the unreleased archives of Dance Mania. The same no nonsense approach is retained on the flip, though "The Fast Lane" is markedly less aggressive, relying on a central warbling motif to capture your attention; "Drop Dead" winds it back to the stripped back, gnarled kick drum flex. Strictly for the DJs.
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out of stock $9.39
Cat: TOKEN 30. Rel: 03 Jun 13
  1. Buzludzha
  2. Energomash
  3. Spomeniks
out of stock $8.58
Cat: SKUDGEPT 006. Rel: 21 Jan 13
  1. A Little Moonlight Dancing
  2. Grave Stalkin
  3. Hastings '95
  4. Detroit Tracks 1 (Analog mix)
Review: Swedish hardware heroes Skudge's eponymous imprint went from strength to strength in 2012 with releases from themselves, MRSK, Rivet and Fishermen and remixes from many others, and they look to continue the momentum throughout 2013 with a massive release schedule. First on the list is Detroit producer Jared Wilson, whose deep acid tracks on labels such as Dolly, Dixon Avenue Basement Jams and his own 7777 imprint have turned him into a cult figure amongst enthusiasts of acid techno. Skudge spare no expense in spreading these four tracks across two 12"s; the title track sees a rough 303 loop and skittering hi-hats skating over searching pads while "Grave Stalkin" is more driving affair that sees darker acid touches moving deep into a wormhole of blacked out reverb. The second 12" leads with the stupendous "Hastings '95", a furious piece of 134bpm techno that sounds at times like a runaway steam train, while the flip contains the more sedate "Detroit Tracks 1 (Analog mix)", where a thick, sub-aquatic 303 line flows through a heady cocktail of swelling chords and abstracted diva vocals. Whether you're familiar with Wilson's acid mastery or not, this double pack is essential!
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out of stock $14.49
Cat: AES 016. Rel: 11 Mar 13
  1. Guilty Pleasures
  2. Karma
Review: Keith Worthy dons a new alias called Lamar for the Guilty Pleasures EP on his own Aesthetic Audio label. A grubby bassline and sprocket wheelin' beats create a smudgy and down-beat groove in "Guilty Pleasures", lightened by flutey keys and a synth line that sounds like a distant buzzing swarm of hornets. "Karma" is as melodious as it it confusing. Locked to a four-four framework, a cathedral organ repetitiously builds in size, surrounded by fluttering and spacey electronics - further defining the producers take on the futuristic Detroit and K-Worthy deep house sound.
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out of stock $6.98
  1. Arnaldo - "People In The Sand"
  2. Joey Anderson - "One World"
  3. October - "Decompression Chamber"
  4. Leif - "Until Dawn"
Review: It is labels like UntilMyHeartStops that proudly do deep house justice. The fourth EP to come from the UK imprint, and third this year, is a various artist sampler featuring label inaugurator Joey Anderson, who is joined by the best of British; October, Lief and the impressive Arnaldo. The latter opens the EP with something sparse, dubby and lonely in "People In The Sand", while A Side companion Anderson delivers an effervescent and cosmic "One World". October toughens up the EP with his bullish and phase filtered "Decompression Chamber", while the combined classicalism, ambience and slow drums of Lief's "Until Dawn" is reminiscent to Sven Weisemann's music as Joeum.
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out of stock $7.51
Cat: RSTLP 002. Rel: 08 Apr 13
  1. Steffi's Disco Crime
  2. Second Disco Crime (feat Steffi)
  3. Blackmails
  4. Fraudulent Advisors
  5. Light Reduction (feat Blawan)
  6. Vopo
  7. Grove Line Forcing
  8. Pearls Robbery (feat Stanley Anscorm)
Review: Analogue Coppers Lucretio and Marieu present Heavy Hands, a weighty eight track slalom through their singular brand of militant, raw, hardware-only house and techno. It's an approach the Berlin based pair have been fine-tuning since 2007, steadily drawing new members both highly regarded and unknown into their network of producers and comes rather swiftly after the debut LP from Third Side, the project The Analogue Cops maintain with Steffi. She features here along with the duo's Parassela cohort Blawan and veteran German producer Stanley Anscrom. From the pounding, concrete thud of opening track "Steffi's Disco Crime" this feels like a definitive statement, with some nightmarish moments along the way!
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out of stock $16.64
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