Review: Freshly-formed French trio BOA - aka Behzad, Ohes and Amarou - wrap themselves around the new decade and squeeze tightly. Joining forces with decorated French musician Mathieu Deranlot, they present four far-ranging deep electronic and ambient techno explorations that range from the dramatic-yet-beatless "Nitro" to the brooding, swampy slo-mo electrofunk of "Lumiere Electronique". Elsewhere "Merci Pierre" teases and squeezes even tighter with its trippy triplets and sudden dive into deep dream synths before "Bonne Nuit" closes on another ambient tip, this time switching the urgency for lullaby arpeggios. Sweet dreams.
Review: Since returning to music a few years ago, B12 man Steven Rutter has released a wealth of fine material in his trademark thoughtful, melodious, complex and far-sighted style. His latest EP is a little darker and more uncomfortable, sounding not unlike the soundtrack to a yet-to-be-aired sci-fi TV movie about the slow death of the universe. He begins with a fine chunk of creepy, faintly unsettling electro (the otherworldly creepiness of "Neuro Fracture"), before reaching for weightier sub-bass, melancholic melodies and complex electronic rhythms on "Not To Be Trusted". Over on Side B, "Divine Intervention" is a fuzzier chunk of horror-informed electro ghostliness, while "Reds Dead" pops, chimes and bubbles impressively thanks to Rutter's extensive use of dub style delay effects and stabbing bass.