This Terrible Virtue Of Forgiveness (GIL remix) (4:23)
Review: After almost a year hibernating (presumably within the dystopian ruins of a once proud Industrial city), S S S S man Samuel Savenberg returns with more angry workouts, noisy soundscapes and creepy ambient interludes. Surprisingly, much of the material is more melancholic and unsettling than it is forthright and insanely intense, with only the fuzzy, high-octane crunch of "Stripped" having any serious dancefloor intentions. This is not a criticism, though. In fact, the EP's more considered soundscapes and music concrete style collages are uniformly inspired, with the droning lament of "This Terrible Virtue Of Forgiveness" and yearning "Absence" standing out.
Review: Wewantsounds' 2019 Record Store Day release takes us back to 1978 and a hard-to-find 12" single from Lebanese composer, pianist, playwright and political commentator Ziad Rahbani. "Abu Ali" is perhaps not Rahbani's best known work - in the Arab world his various albums are far more celebrated - but it is one that has chimed with Western audiences thanks to its assimilation of elements of American disco, soul and funk. The title track is something of a beast: a 10-minute epic that wraps Arabic orchestration, mazy horn refrains and prominent piano motifs around an atmospheric disco groove and intergalactic synthesizer lines. It's bonkers but brilliant, making this reissue more than welcome. On the flipside there's a chance to enjoy "Prelude (Theme from Mais El Rim)", an epic example of Rahbani's 1970s soundtrack work.
African Drug (Joaquin Joe Claussell Hallucination version) (8:19)
Review: Long before the rise in interest in African music, British electronica producer Bob Holyroyd was making tracks rich in traditional instrumentation. "African Drug" is, undoubtedly, the most famous of these. Originally released as a single in 1994, the intensely melodious, Steve Reich-esque work has been remixed numerous times over the years. This latest edition arrives on Joaquin "Joe" Clausell's Sacred Rhythm label, with profits going to charities that work to save Africa's endangered Rhino. The A-side contains a freshly mixed and re-mastered version of Holroyd's brilliant original - which brilliantly increases in intensity with the addition of tribal drums two thirds of the way through - with a more percussive, pleasingly hallucinogenic Clausell remix on the flip. In a word: essential.
Review: Fresh from the success of two top notch EPs on iile, Leo Pol unveils his most ambitious release to date. All I Got In Me is something of a beast, with seven tracks stretched across two slabs of wax. It's a rather pleasingly varied affair, all told, with the experienced producer flitting between Detroit style techno futurism ("BH2"), warm, chunky and occasionally tough deep house ("All I Got In Me", "Live Concrete"), spacey beatbox electro ("Live Love") and the kind of tech-house cuts that look to both the Motor City and Chicago for inspiration. As a bonus, he's also included a collaborative cut under the St Ouen Connection moniker, the deep and hazy, techno-tempo positivity of "Masile".
Review: In 2016, Family Groove Records released a 12" of previously unheard 1979 demo recordings by Webster Station, a boogie-funk band from Dayton, Ohio whose studio efforts were initially binned by Warner Brothers for not being commercial enough. Demand for Family Groove's limited 12" of their recordings has remained high, so the label has decided to do a reissue. There's much to admire throughout, from the high-octane thrills of opener "Are You For Real" and the spacey warmth of the super-soulful "Can You Feel My Love", to the sugary sweetness of the Latin tinged ballad "Lady" and righteous closer "If You Feel Like Dancing", a killer combination of spacey synths, crunchy drums, urgent vocals and killer Clavinet lines.
Review: Mysterious outfit from Los Angeles, California, Real Bad Man comes through with it's 4th release, this time a 12" with an all star tribute to the gods of P-Funk. Enlisting the talents of Hot Chip's Alexis Taylor dueting with Royal Trux's Jennifer Herrema...produced by Tim Goldsworthy, Afro-Futurist Clap! Clap! and Tropical Rhythm Kings The Mauskovic Dance Band, this limited edition (300 Black/200 White), vinyl only release, comes in a printed DISCO SLEEVE 500 with hand stamped white labels.
Review: Having first collaborated on Oil Gang two years ago, Trends & Boylan have developed a heavyweight reputation across the 140 territories and here they take things to a whole new level with their debut album Bedlam. The title says it all; fork-tongued grime, savage beats and a rollcall of MC titans. From the previous Riko-fronted single "Kreuger" to the neck snap two step of "Crack Ya Back" and the absolute gutter operatics of "The Eye", the whole 12 track trip swathes through the grime / dubstep axis with menace and confidence. Time to cause some bedlam.