Review: You couldn't accuse The Assembled Minds' Matt Saunders - arguably best known as one half of 4AD outfit Magnetophone - of lacking a clear vision. With sophomore solo set Creaking Haze & Other Rave Ghosts, he claims to have created "techno-Morris-horror", via an aural "investigation into how a '70s British horror movie would sound, if a strange kind of proto-rave dance music had been at the director's disposal". In essence, this manifests itself in piano laden ambient tracks to tease and titillate zombie maypole dancers, discordant dancefloor slow jams peppered with creepy ice cream van chimes, and occasional blasts of loved-up, misty-eyed nostalgia.
Review: After the success of "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun" and "More More More", now follows the 3rd take out of the debut album of the Dutch 4 piece "Worlds Apart". This track has everything what a rock-pop ballad needs to have: Atmosphere, a superb arrangement and thoughtfulness. With "Worlds Apart", the four girls show impressive, that they are able to attract an older audience too.
Review: Having built their reputation through 12" singles for the likes of Crosstown Rebels and Poker Flat, Dan Berkson and James What deliver their debut album, on their freshly minted imprint Modelmaker. Interestingly, Keep Up Appearances is an altogether warmer, melodious and more evocative set than you'd perhaps expect, with a smattering of rich downtempo cuts joining a solid selection of dancefloor-friendly deep house. You can hear a classic dub techno influence in cuts such as "Keep Up Appearances" and "Shadow Theory", while the acid-flecked, soul-soaked "Make It True" sounds like classic Osunlade. Best of all, though, are the more forthright efforts, with the ragged "Seraphim" standing out.
Review: Charles Robuck may have left The Residents behind years ago, but his attitude towards music has barely changed. Eggs For Breakfast, described by the artist as "a collection of tiny tunes", is every bit as eccentric, experimental, giddy and forthright as you'd expect from a man who spent decades sticking two fingers up at the art establishment. The tracks are by and large short and sweet, with Bobuck exploring one clear idea - be it manic drum & bass/synth-pop fusion, drowsy vocal ambience, mutant electro, freakish psychedelia, outer space Afro-futurism, Nine Inch Nails style moodiness, tongue-in-cheek electro-reggae, skuzzy rock or neo-classical/noise fusion - before moving on to the next one. It's a schizophrenic kind of set, but also hugely imaginative and fantastically entertaining.
Review: Eric Copeland's first album for DFA, 2013's Joke In The Hole, was something of a breakthrough for the eccentric artist. Since then, he's released two albums for L.I.E.S, both of which were notably obtuse in comparison. Black Bubblegum, his second full-length DFA outing, is an altogether cheerier proposition, with Copeland combining his usual abstract, experimental beat-making approach with skewed guitars, quirky instrumentation, wild pop sensibilities and more than a touch of wayward '60s psychedelia. As you'd expect, this kind of zany, lo-fi fusion makes for enjoyable and hugely entertaining listening, with the New York producer seemingly throwing everything but the kitchen sink at the project.