Review: Club ready DJ tools by Brenda main man CNCPT for Developer's go to label for peak time assault weapons. "Foreign Drum Sequence 1" gets stuck in straight away, this one is an absolutely ferocious Berghain ready slammer that ticks all the right boxes. "Foreign Drum Sequence 2" is a bit more restrained and we appreciate the hypnotic and cyclical nature of it that's reminiscent of classic Ben Long/Space Djz kind of stuff. On the flip "Foreign Drum Sequence 3" equally shows some restraint but works those hypnotic elements real well and that's where CNCPT really finds his sound on this release. The final track goes back to the steely and muscular techno sounds of the first track, but with more funk injected into it.
Review: Material by London duo Astrud Steehouder and Nina Bosnic, aka Finders Keepers duo Paper Dollhouse, gets pulled into new rhythmic shapes by Joe Cocherell and Montalk on this compelling record for Resilience. Given his background as drummer in DVA Damas and propulsive techno output on Frozen Border, Cocherell is well placed to reinterpret "Space III" as eleven minutes of kraut addled techno that you could easily visualise James Holden closing out a Sonar performance with. Complementing this, Resilience's in-house mystery production unit Montalk take a more abstract approach to "Drone 1", submerging the vocals of Paper Dollhouse in all manner of spectral delay on a remix that forgoes rhythm in favour of all encompassing atmosphere.
Review: Previously spotted on Nomine's Nomine Sound and Fox & Hound, Berlin's CPE gets his fractured jig on with Georgian label Transfigured Time. Weighing in at six tracks it's near-album sized, too. Highlights include the brittle neck snaps and alien charm of opener "CTRL", the grainy decays and paranoid ghetto funk of "Projects 32" and the physical rabbit punch beat blows of "This Is Science". And that's just the half of it...
Coefficient - "Wavefunction Collapse" (P God remix) (6:58)
Coefficient - "Wavefunction Collapse" (6:52)
Ben Gibson - "Frontier" (5:50)
P God - "Hoag's Object" (6:20)
Review: Italian label Prototypes is pretty straight up with their mission statement. It's all about 'classic techno elements blended with eerie atmospheres, dark synths and sharp percussion as essential characteristics.' UK producer Coefficient pursues the bleepier end of hypnotic techno in the same vein as the legendary Sahko, as heard on the trance inducing atmospherics of "Wavefunction Collapse". The fierce remix up next by label boss P.God goes for the jugular in the same style as recent Pole Group or Avian efforts. New Zealander Ben Gibson is featured too, with the lush deep techno excursion entitled "Frontier" which proves that this guy is on point as always. Finally we have P.God again with another fine effort in the form of "Hoag's Object". While certainly not as furious as his aforementioned remix, it certainly is jam packed full of drama and suspense. With its trance inducing melodies, droney pads and strict rhythms channelling that now classic Sandwell District kind of vibe.
Review: Thule's dark doppelganger AE Recordings was revived last year with the excellent Freyja EP by NonniMal, and now the saga continues with this devastatingly on-point release from Cold. Much like the vibe on Thule, the music on Thule continues to channel the mood of the icy tundra into refined, modern club tracks, but there's definitely a more sinister intent at work in these tracks from Cold. "Aerials" is a nightmarish chugger loaded with eerie sonics, while "Phased Out" lays down some fine dubby processing over a bed of chilly chord pulses. "Exiles" is a standout track thanks to its crafty groove, coming on a little more housey than its counterparts but still heavier than the average Thule jam.
Review: Having built its name on various artist releases featuring old and new artists, Contort Yourself is branching out with a new series that focuses on one contemporary act per release. In this instance it's Coletivo Vandalismo getting some much-deserved attention. The Portuguese industrial punk outfit have a visceral sound that favours noise and distortion, but most importantly they know how to wield these sonic tools for maximum impact. The snarl of the synths and the crunch of the drums on "Hostages Of Society" could easily be too much in the wrong hands, but here the errant tones find their own space in the mix, making the impact of the track all the more on-point.
Review: After appearing on the first Calypso Records release out of Mexico last year, Colossio returns to the fray with a whole EP of sleazy jams for the warm up crowd to get nasty to. "Moto" is a grinding crossover track that features dirty garage guitars to match the low-slung synth undulations and sizzling disco beat, while "Fe" throws the windows open for a ranging cut centred around all kinds of instrumentation played with a post-punk looseness. "Ansia" keeps things nervous and atmospheric without skimping on party energy, and then Man Power swoops in for a remix of "Moto" that keeps things spooky while injecting a swinging groove into the mix.
Review: No-nonsense techno type Mike Davis founded the Brenda label last year. While previous releases have been credited to the now familiar CNCPT, Brenda 003 (which, confusingly, is actually the imprint's fourth release) sees the debut of Company, a collaboration between Davis and CNCPT. As usual, the four tracks showcased here don't mess around; "003.01", for example, builds into a throbbing techno floor-slayer from the most moody and atmospheric of starts, while "003.02" is as ghostly and otherworldly cut as you're likely to find all year, even if it does boast some seriously dense drums. Elsewhere, "003.03" is a functional but playable percussion workout, while "003.04" achieves a perfect balance between muscular aggression and heart-aching melancholy.
Review: You could never accuse Parisian artist Coni of releasing too much music; to date, the ClekClekBoom-affiliated artist has released just three EPs in four years. Clearly, these releases have impressed The Trilogy Tapes founder Will Bankhead, as he's snapped-up a four-track EP from the talented French producer. It's the A-side that sparkles the most immediately, beginning with the curious looped sound effects, slashed jazz chords, swinging rhythms and bubbling electronic hits of "Into The Silly World". Arguably even better is "Zex Plongeon". While not as thrillingly unusual as its' predecessor, it feels more obviously tailored to club play. It's creepy, deep, drowsy and tense, with slowly pulsing chords and ghostly textures stretching out over a tidy techno groove.
Review: On-point Aussie label Butter Sessions latest excursion is of mysterious origin. All the Melbourne imprint will say is that Consumer Watchdawgz is: "a collaboration between two mysterious figures from down under". Regardless of origin, there's something wonderfully retro-futurist about the untitled A-side, which peppers a dense, mid-90s European techno rhythm with cascading, IDM style melodies lines, spacey electronics, and "intelligent techno" style motifs. The B-side continues this intergalactic theme at a house techno, with rock solid kick drums being joined by ragged acid lines, drifting ambient chords, and lightly alien lead lines. Both tracks are pretty darn good, all told, and should excite anyone who went to techno clubs in the 1990s.
Review: Style Upon Styles sister label Bangers & Ash is fired up once again to encourage a select artist to indulge both their ambient and dancefloor sides, and on this occasion it's US producer Contakt who has been asked to split his musical personality across two sides of wax. It's actually the mellower 'Ash' side that leads in first, with the dub techno meditation of "Second Shift" followed up by the star-gazing machine soul of "Detritus." Then on the flip the heat gets turned up with the rolling drums and punchy chord stabs of "Shut Off Notice" and the distinctly Motor City flavoured thump of "NDO."
Review: We are pleased to present a 4-track EP from Austin, Texas analogue hardware enthusiast Bill Converse. Immersed in the early days of the 90s midwest rave scene, Bill began DJing at a young age in Lansing, Michigan. Luminaries such as Claude Young, Traxx, and Derrick May were key early influences. Techno, noise, ambient and tape processing are all part of his uncanny sound palette. His debut album 'Meditations/Industry' was released on cassette in 2013 and edited for a vinyl release on Dark Entries in 2016 followed by two 12" singles 'Warehouse Invocation' and '7 of 9' the same year. In 2017 Converse released his second album 'The Shape Of Things To Come' followed by the double EP 'Salt Of Mars'.
'Hulled' is a 25 minute journey spread across 4 tracks of glacial abandon. All tracks were recorded directly to tape with no overdubs, made at Converse's home studio. Bill says these tracks represent "ocean waves in stormy conditions, dark grey blue water, or more generally speaking something ominous and beautiful." The songs on this album reveal a sublime influence from Detroit techno, IDM, and Acid. Built around vintage synthesizer lines and gritty drum machine percussion, the tracks ebb and flow like the effect of sun shimmering on water, woozy, gauzy and ephemeral. All songs were mastered for vinyl by George Horn at Fantasy Studios in Berkeley. Each EP is housed in a die-cute jacket designed by Eloise Leigh with peachy pink patterns landing on an alien water planet and seeing mysterious playing forms under the turquoise water. and the. Each copy includes a postcard featuring photo of Bill with notes.