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This week at Juno

bok bok
Records from Bok Bok, Rat Life, Protect-U, copeland and more were among the week’s best.

Various Artists – Hyperdub 10.1 (Hyperdub)

Hyperdub 10.1

This year sees the tenth anniversary of Kode9’s Hyperdub label, and Hyperdub 10.1 is the first of four promised CD compilations to be rolled out before the end of 2014. The two discs on this first compilation explore Hyperdub’s “dance dimension”, combining 16 unreleased tracks with 17 classics from their sizable archive. Morgan Zarate, Mala, Kuedo, the late DJ Rashad and more all feature, but, for us at Juno Plus, the chance to see Kyle Hall join the Hyperdub stable once again with a track as weird as that seen on 2010’s Kaychunk single is reason enough to get excited. For the vinyl heads, Hall’s contribution was also put out on a 12″ this week with an extra track, “Take Me Away”.
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Bok Bok – Your Charizmatic Self (Night Slugs)

Your Charizmatic Self

It’s been three years since Night Slugs lynchpin Bok Bok’s last full solo release, and it’s fair to say that things have changed a lot since then, not just in the sphere of music he operates in, but for the label as a whole. It’s testament to the producer’s style though that Your Charizmatic Self still sounds like nothing else. A conceptual EP of sorts that aims to create music to reflect the combination of concrete walls and natural foliage of the studio depicted on the cover, it’s nevertheless got some of the most abstract yet funky tracks the producer has made to date.
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Neue Wohnkultur/Autonervous – Wir Sind Soldaten (Rat Life Records)

Ratlife 2

Formed earlier this year as an edit-focused offshoot of Dresden’s Uncanny Valley label, Rat Life Records is run by UV regular Credit 00, with a mission statement promising to reflect the “imperfect spirit of life in dirty raw dance music”. While the first 12″ may have concentrated on muscular EBM edits, it’s this second record that really makes good on that promise, with mysterious Nation collective M.o.m.O. credited with the DNA rearrangement of Neue Wohnkultur’s “Wir sind Soldaten”, and Mick Wills delivering a punishing power loop techno take on female duo Autonervous. Both are exactly the kind of thing you’d imagine going down a storm at The Golden Pudel.
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Protect-U – Free USA (Future Times)

Free USA

It’s been three years since the Protect-U pairing of Washington DC’s Aaron Leitko and Mike Petillo last appeared on Future Times, so their debut album Free USA makes for a most welcome return. Unsurprisingly, it’s an LP which comes filled with tropical melodies and vibrant synth textures, all held together with robust analogue rhythms, but it’s not all the club-focused experience you might expect. The ambient drift of “Dit Floss” recalls early Oneohtrix Point Never, and offers one of the album’s standout moments.
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Joan Bibiloni – El Sur (Music From Memory)

El Sur

Amsterdam label Music from Memory are steadily becoming the most interesting new archive labels of the past few years, with the imprint’s first two issues, looking at the work of Gigi Masin and Leon Lowman, both essential purchases. The third looks at Mallorcan guitarist Joan Bibiloni, looking at the more experimental era of his decades-long career, selecting tracks from a six album run which commenced with the album Una Vida Llarga I Tranquila, originally released in 1984. If early experimentation with tape loops, drum computers and synthesisers is of interest, all delivered with a uniquely ’80s kind of funk, then El Sur is essential listening.
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Torn Hawk – Quadrifolio (Rush Hour)


Rush Hour’s No ‘Label’ series is a constant source of delight, and the inclusion of Torn Hawk on their ongoing discography is cause for celebration. The L.I.E.S. and Valcrond Video man’s scuzzy blend of epic guitar and fusion of Balearic melody and kosmische texture was surely made for the 7″ format, and on Quadrifolio you get two. “Strike Inside” is perhaps our favourite track of the bunch, really showcasing Wyatt’s talent for crafting intricate sound collages that span the zone between ambient reflection and the dancefloor.
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Kelis – Rumble (Actress Sixinium Bootleg) (Ninja Tune)


Given the fact that Kelis’ most recent album came out on Ninja Tune, and Actress’ Werkdiscs has its own partnership with the UK institution, this team-up was pretty much inevitable, but Actress still has a way of confounding your expectations at every corner. There’s a vocal version of the producer’s take on “Rumble” if you want it, but they feel merely like window dressing for the instrumental, which combines the ambient melody of Aphex Twin with whirring stop-start rhythm mechanics. For some, this will be better than anything on Ghettoville.
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copeland – Because I’m Worth It (self-released)

Because I'm Worth It

To say that Inga Copeland’s debut album under the new copeland name has been eagerly awaited is an understatement. Since she parted ways with Dean Blunt there have been only a few solo transmissions from her while Blunt has released last year’s excellent The Redeemer album. Because I’m Worth It is not quite the curveball Blunt’s last solo record was, being more in keeping with the murky, lo-fi nature of their Hype Williams material, but crucially it lets us in on more of Copeland’s personality than we’ve see to date, especially on the startlingly honest delivery of “Fit 1” and “Inga”.
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Frak – Fusion In Park (Kontra-Musik)


Swedish trio Frak may not be putting out records at quite the rate they were last year, but even still, keeping on top of what they do release can still feel like a Sisyphean task. Thankfully, the quality level shows no sign of dropping, even if this 12″ for Kontra-Musik is one of their most straight-up offerings. Kontra mischievously describe Frak as “the Swedish House Mafia for people who actually know what house music is”, and it’s unlikely the trio have sounded quite as close to house as they do here, most notably on the B-side track “To Find A Way Home”, whose patient mid-tempo groove and jacking drums are nevertheless filled with their Scandinavian idiosyncrasies.
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Sciahri – Mysterious Love (Ilian Tape)

Mysterious LoveThe Zenker brothers’ Ilian Tape label continues it’s brilliant run of form with a debut EP of contemporary loop techno from Sciahri. The producer supposedly has an interest in the ’90s Birmingham sound, and it’s easy to discern from the four tracks on Mysterious Love. “The Dream Is True” for instance is full of ramshackle percussion that sound like a looser take on Surgeon’s rhythms, but the spinback in the breakdown give the track a personal flavour that seems all too absent frrom a lot of raw techno these days. “Emblema” on the other hand is the kind of dubby, ambient-tinged number that you’d hear at 4am to rapturous reception. If you’ve been sleeping on this label, now’s as good as time as any to start paying attention.
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