Review: Icelander-in-Berlin and card carrying member of the experimental shape-shifting oqko collective, Astvaldur's debut album enjoys the vinyl attention it deserves. A delicious web of splinters, shards and shadows, the whole body of work tessellates and twists in crazed games of contrasts - the eerie ambient and broken glass drum hits of "Flesh" the stuttering kicks and gurgling bass of "Locked On" and the warped reverse tones and textures of "Rotary Credo" are just three examples of the stark, futurist fusion at play here. Tip.
Review: 2 B Real: an exciting new venture from Finn and Local Action. A chance for Finn to delve deeper into his influence and hone his raw, loopy physical style, this launch EP is a strong statement of intent. "Late At Night" is a jacking Detroit-minded jam that wouldn't go amiss deep in a DJ Bone selection while "Lightwork" captures Fox in suave Swing Ting mode. His bars rising the dreamy chords cascade, it's a fusion that refuses to be categorised. Do yourself a favour and keep 2 B Real on the radar.
Review: Fledgling UK label The Full Hundred continue their efforts to straddle the fine line between the zeitgeist and the outer reaches of pop music with this 12" from Boston producer JLZUZ MILLION. The alter ego of 20 year old Joseph Zucco, JLSUS MILLION has by and large become known for his behind the buttons work, adding some production weight to last year's Illusions Of record by Charlie XCX's as well as collaborating with Chicago rapper Sasha Go Hard. Error is quite a watershed moment for Zucco then, and the three original cuts suggest JLSUS MILLION is comparable to a turbo charged Clams Casino. Comes with remixes from Magical Mistakes and Taquwami.
Review: Rounding up another year of dark experiments, Nervous Horizon invite Second Storey to bring 2016 to the warped, wrangled close it deserves. Hot on the heels of his "Bismuth" EP and Appleblim collaborations come three more adventures in pastures unclaimed: "Spin Cycle" is a grainy, decaying hypnosis loop, "Critters" is the type of two-step the devil dances to while "Sludge 3D" is a pounding slab of lo-fi fuzzy techno that unravels into a brilliantly trippy drum arrangement. Three tracks, three tales, one Storey.
Review: Fiery dynamics abound as Detroit's Snakepiss delivers a caustic six track document. Ranging from the paranoid and intense overlapping vocal samples of the angst-ridden "Blaze" to the slow-and-steady tribal thunder of "Our Love", each cut reveals a different shade of Snakepiss's sonic personality. There's anger here, but it's displayed conservatively and creatively; "Set Fire To The Living", for example, is an icy slice of electro that develops into such a rich groove you can't avoid the heat. The vocal texture on "Frig", meanwhile, sounds as if the devil has been sampled himself... And wrapped around a meditative cosmic sermon that would sit well in any daring disco set. Strike a light.
Review: Acid Waxa drew plenty of positive heat for carrying Roy Of The Ravers amongst many other respected braindancers, but now Hot Chip drummer Sarah Jones is getting the remix treatment on the label for her Pillow Person project, with some wild results. It's great to see Bogdan Raczynski back in action and bringing some gently wonked, emotional acid meanderings to "On Your Way", while Lechuga Zafiro makes an art out of aping footwork, and more specifically "Footcrab" while making it sound like someone just stubbed their toe and got stuck in a loop. IYDES however turns "In My Game" into a deconstructed but utterly bloated pop beast, and then Oliver Coates whips "Go Ahead" into a woozy, highly strung daze with billowing synths underneath Jones' vocal.