Review: Geir Jensson's debut album under the now familiar Biosphere alias, Microgravity, has long been considered something of a classic of the early '90s ambient boom. First released in 1991, it offered an icy but suitably atmospheric mix of chilly ambience, British-style "intelligent techno" and crystalline IDM. To celebrate 25 years since it was recorded (it was released a year later, in 1991), Geir Jensson has re-mastered it and, with the help of a successful crowd-funding campaign, pressed it onto a double CD minus the cross-fades and sound effects featured on the original pressing. Happily, Microgravity has lost none of its allure.
Review: Seixlack has been wobbling around many a label since first surfacing on Bliq and 777 in 2015, and their grubby, wonky approach to hardware house music sounds just right on DJ Haus' House Crime label. As is customary with House Crime, you get a whopping double pack of jams to chew on here, and the mood veers from the blown out dream-dance of "Computer Cosmos" to the bunker-dwelling deviant electro blips of "Asa-Delta". With lo-fi distortion guiding the way throughout, Seixlack demonstrates how to use production attitude to bind together disparate moods into one cohesive assault on prim and proper house music. This is gutter-dwelling groove music with a whole lot of heart.
Review: Stephen Laubner never fails to deliver the goods, whether on his own label Something or elsewhere. Having recently popped up on The Untold Stories, this time around he's dropping his uniquely crusty compositions on Synthetic Gold. After a quietly disconcerting ambient opening, the leftfield grind of "The Taphead" pushes an uncompromising agenda of ragged bass and an unrelenting groove. "October Sunrise" by way of contrast is a more intimate, sweet natured affair. "Syntax Error" too taps into the softer side of Laubner's craft in a most mesmerizing of ways, but for the die hard fans fear not, there's also plenty of locked groove loops included to keep you tripping into infinity.
Review: Blundar is a label shrouded in mystery, although it seems aligned with artists like Lowtec and those orbiting crews like Smallville. The latest transmission on the dusty house imprint comes from STL, whose disheveled sounds is a natural fit for what has come before on Blundar. "Track 1" peers through a thick haze of smoke, exhaling pads and drones and keeping the bass pulsing throughout. The rest of the EP is given over to experimental and ambient tones, with the second track on Side B being an especially arresting piece loaded with melancholic contemplation. It's another strong addition to the Blundar repertoire, and another example of STL's skills and adaptability in the studio.
Review: Building on the momentum of the strong reissue programme undertaken at Thule Records HQ, Thor returns to the fray with some new productions that add a new chapter to the story of Icelandic techno. This limited run of Decay appropriately comes on marbled grey vinyl. Of course, the unique atmosphere the label carved out in the 90s has been left intact - the dubby processing and icy melodies abound throughout, creating utterly immersive techno and house variations in the process. "Insanity Dub" has a live feel to its drum set which injects a curious disco energy into the mix, while "Rusty Flashback" takes things in a subtle tech house direction. "Garden Of Corrosion" stands apart with its slender sound palette, placing the emphasis on groove and swing, while "Pepper Jones" ramps the dub techno exploration up to 11. If you love the sound of Thule, you're going to love this.