Review: In the three years since the release of his last full-length as Machinedrum, Vapor City, Travis Stewart seems to have done some soul-searching. Whereas that set was a punchy and occasionally punishing mixture of juke, D&B, and UK garage sounds, Human Energy looks towards new age sounds and ideas for inspiration. Of course, Stewart hasn't completely abandoned skittish rhythms and bass music influences, it's just that these come wrapped in cheery, off-kilter synthesizer melodies, sparkling electronic flourishes, and repeated nods towards ambient, R&B and experimental synth-pop. As a result, it's a hugely entertaining and imaginative set, with just enough club-ready fodder to keep DJs happy.
Review: Earlier in the year, former Indiana steelworker turned Juke futurist Jerrilynn "Jlin" Patton joined forces with British choreographer Wayne McGregor to perform a unique music and dance show at Krakow's Unsound festival. Entitled "Autobiography", the show featured some of Patton's most expansive, complex and impressive music to date. Here, Planet Mu offers up a studio version of Patton's soundtrack, a richly immersive and emotion-rich journey that combines low-end pressure and punchy, high-tempo juke beats with sweeping neo-classical movements, ambient soundscapes, occasional field recordings and surprise jazz flourishes. It's a hugely impressive musical journey, all told, and one that proves once and for all that Patton is one of the most exciting artists in electronic music right now.