Review: It's been two years since Teengirl Fantasy won the world over with "Cheaters" and their debut album 7am, an album that referenced Mr Fingers as much as the generation of chillwave artists that preceded them. While that album undoubtedly felt top heavy at times, such was the nature of that single, Tracer feels like an altogether more balanced album, hitting the right note between their looser, experimental rhythmic tendencies and grandiose melodic nature, such as on the twisting, symphonic "End", and the new age sould of "EFX". Of course there are some certified club tracks there too - "Do It" is almost pure 90s Nu Groove, while "Timeline" is a forcefully acidic track swathed in deep, marshmallow pads - but they fit nicely with the album's whole - forward thinking electronic music that is an ideal fit for the R&S mission statement.
Review: Pitched somewhere between the gritty, propulsive beats of Los Angeles, and the exploratory jazz of Cosmogramma, Flying Lotus's fourth album, Until The Quiet Comes is arguably the most delicate record he's ever produced. Described as a "collage of mystical states, dreams, sleep and lullabies", it steers away from bigger moments, choosing instead to present an understated patchwork of breezy jazz samples, dusty hip-hop beats smeared vocals seemingly inspired by DMT hallucinations. While previous efforts were wildly futuristic at times, Until The Quiet Comes is confidently classicist - and seals Flying Lotus's position as one of our generation's visionary producers.
Review: Reggae vocal prodigy Sandra Cross famously had her first hit at just 14 years old, and since then has remained a foundational part of the worldwide scene. Having worked with vital names like Mad Professor and Sly & Robbie, Cross has put out more than 60 odd tunes to date. Scoops continue their spotlight on her with a big new 7" that has contemporary dub riddims overlaid with her gloriously sunny and positive voice. "Jah Love" is the sort of timeless tune that works in any setting and any weather, while the "Version" on the flip packs a more direct punch.
Review: In his funk-informed, edit-rich guise for Daphni/Caribou's Jiaolong imprint, Chaz 'Toro Y Moi' Bundick drops another sublime two-tracker of impeccably informed groove for sharp dancers and fearless romancers. "Grind" wastes no time in getting down with a sublime roll of drums, sleek bass and perfect touches of boogie synth, leaving space for some spaced out vocoder vocal over the top. "Prelims" heads off into more experimental territory with a low riding beat and droning, detuned melodies aimed squarely at creating a future-soul hybrid for the open-minded heads to tap into. There are serious legs to Bundick's project and this record serves to build on those pins with plenty of grace and oodles of style.
Casual Violence - "Acceptance Of The Fact At Hand"
Victor Martinez - "Dav To Dub"
Fanon Flowers - "Invisible Life"
Grovskopa - "Haas"
Casual Violence - "Word & Form" (version II)
Grovskopa - "Atopic" (Lag remix)
Grovskopa - "Stinson"
Sect Outro 1
Review: "It's All For You" is a complement to the Sect vinyl catalogue, and a mark of respect to the CD in techno history. Artists known and new swell the ranks, representing the techno forms in the honorable Sect style. Beyond the usual, exceptionally high standard of quality from the Sect roster of artists so far, new artist productions on the first CD include Ben Gibson's "Clamour", a modern take on a Tokyo-style future cityscape, Jeroen Search's "Section A", a physical, forward thinking deep techno triumph and Voidloss' "In The Void" - techno the way it should be made for the 21st century. On CD 2, AnD's "Granular" offers traditional dub aesthetics and modern techno techniques taken to a wholly satisfying next level, while OCH's "Tears" manifest as a dark techno experience of rhythm-led lines of perfection. CV's "Acceptance Of The Fact At Hand" hones hues of colour in aural form, as a subtle vista is painted with strings of haunted beauty.
Das Ding - "Life Is A Tool In The Hands Of Strangers" (4:04)
DJ Overdose - "I See No Stars At Night" (4:16)
DJ Overdose - "Potje Freaken" (4:55)
Review: The Go Finger label has been digging into the undergrowth of synthwave sounds and deviant electro for a few years now, more recently graduating from the tape scene to put out EPs of leftfield electronic adventures on wax. This EP in particular is quite something, calling on the vintage talents of Das Ding in all their eerie, warped, pulsing, analogue refinement. "Conun Drum" is a curiously playful trip through noirish cityscapes by way of strobing lead lines and militaristic machine beats, while "Life Is A Tool In The Hands Of Strangers" takes a more uptempo approach without losing the bombast of their melodic arrangements. Dutch electro champ DJ Overdose steps up for the B side, dropping the overcast and creeping "I See No Stars At Night" and the dishevelled robot beatdown "Potje Freaken".
Review: After three various artist releases, Brooklyn label Super Tuff presents its first fully-fledged artist release from label founder M Vaughan. As laid out in the label's manifesto about taking influence from Studio Barnhus, Smallville and Uncanny Valley, the mood on Tenderness EP is delicately melodic and charmingly off-centre, but it still grooves where it counts. "Moon River" is as meandering as its titular body of water, riding on shuffling, organic drums and vibing Rhodes chords. "Turn Around!" is a sample-loaded jam with a lilting, 1940s romanticism about it, and "Tenderness" too tugs at the heartstrings with a lilting, nostalgic approach to harmony. "When It All Happens" is no slouch in the emotional department either, rounding off an astoundingly bucolic record from the heart of NYC.
Review: Nat Wendell launches the Depth Of My Soul label with a confident slab of deepness that should draw plenty of heat on the peaks and troughs of the house music landscape. "The Way" is a crisply produced pumper, revolving around a seductive little lead line and the haunting titular vocal hook - there's a whiff of tech in the make up of the track, but the groove is all house. "Theoretics" follows down a similar path, keeping things moody and mechanical without disposing of the funk, and then it's down to "Release Your Soul" to bring a little light into proceedings with some mellow keys and dubby flourishes.
Review: Golf Channel and Emotional Response embark on a mission to bring together two generations of Kraut excellence as Dunkelziffer's Dominik Von Senger collaborates with the Montezumas Rache pairing of Jan Schulte and Christian Pannenborg. As you'd expect, the resultant EP is rather fine. They set the tone with "Rheinfaren", where a low-slung, dubbed-out groove is complimenting by twinkling guitars, delay-laden Jew's harp parts, and other sun-kissed elements. "Tangerine (Krauter Mix)" doffs a cap to Tangerine Dream and Dunkelziffer, with tumbling guitars - some effected by a wah-wah pedal - and vintage synths combining to create an effortlessly Balearic mood. Closer "Guten Morgen Bromio" is a fuzzier affair, combining grooves and sounds reminiscent of Pink Floyd's Animals full-length with the out-there attitude of classic krautrock.
Review: ** Psychemagik classic repress alert ** Ah yes, "For Your Love", the 1978 Euro Disco classic from Chilly hasn't that been re/edited by at least 78% of Soundcloud's disco edit community? Correct - it's actually second only to the gazillion marketing tools presented as a remix that are helping to power forward the career of Lana Del Rey. Psychemagik are yet to remix Lana Del Lips so we can forgive them for adding to the slew of edits of Chilly's Yardbirds cover version already released. As it stands the Psychemagik version of "For Your Love" is a commendable revision which beefs up the low end and extends everything beyond the ten minute mark. Much better is the sub blessed take on Joyce's "Aldeia De Ogum" which should come with a Punta Del Esta Approved stamp.