Review: Versalife continues a prolific run of deep and dynamic electro soul with this double pack on 20/20 Vision. The scene is set early on with the smoky pads and crisp drums of "Binary Worlds" - equal parts deep-diving machine soul and body-popping 808 funk. Things get nastier with the strafing monosynth punctuating "Covert Ops" and the edgy creep of "Shadow Union" on to "Manifold"s luxuriant sound world. The quality level remains staggeringly high as we trip through classically informed electro of every shade, adding yet another accomplished payload to the formidable Versalife catalogue.
Review: The fourth multi-artist EP from blog-turned-record label Innate takes the imprint's inherently warm and far-sighted sound into new intergalactic directions. Offering a quartet of cuts from established producers and rising stars, all inspired by dreams of cross-cosmic travel and the alluring weightlessness of deep space. 004 explores the love of stargazing electronics in much greater deapth.
The A-side is all about melodious and spacey electro with Dutch legend Aroy Dee making a rare appearance away from his acclaimed M>O>S Recordings label. "Leegte" A1 is impressively immersive, cloaking a jaunty bassline and lo-fi beats in sumptuous aural textures and glassy-eyed chords. Accompanied by Innate label regular Gilbert, "Furthest Planet" A2 is a deep roller whose lilting lead lines, shimmering electronics and tumbling acid lines are little less than life-affirming.
On side B, the sound subtly shifts towards the multi-coloured, sci-fi shimmer of techno. Newcomer Jonski, (aka Bristol electro producer Zobol) drops "Venusian Surface" B1 - a classic interstellar jam full of vivid chords, echoing synth squiggles and alluring leads that rise above a classic tech-funk bassline. Last but not least, effervescent Welshman DJ Guy (Unthank/Other World Music) slams down an energetic techno stomper in "Aphelion Orbit": boasting brilliantly breathless drum programming, illuminated by the celestial shimmer of accompanying chords. A perfect conclusion to Innate's most action-packed release to date.
Review: Club Quarantane is a 36-hour virtual rave brought to you by RA, YouTube and creatives from all over the electronic music community. It has hosted various online parties with some high class DJ since soon after we all entered lockdown. The results have kept people together while the selectors have served up plenty of sweet musical memories, some of which are now available to keep, forever, in the real world, thanks to this first compilation on vinyl. Assured newcomers like Solid Blake sit next to vital mainstays like Marcel Dettmann for this top notch tech outing.
Review: Casey's musical career spans over three decades having taken up producing in 1989 after a love affair with Acid House. He made his vinyl debut in 1990 with fellow city band, Shades of Rhythm (recording under the name Frenzied Bass) on a limited-edition release called The Fenland Bass EP. In 1991 Casey was signed to Richie Hawtin's Plus 8 records in Canada, where between 1991 and 1995 he released several singles under the names 0733 and VFT.In 1995 Casey set up his own label, Fine Balance Records, where he released a couple of limited edition melodic Techno EP's under his own name. He has also been releasing on the well acclaimed label "For Those That Knoe".
The Vast Profound on remix duties is Wil Russell (of duo Pop Out And Play), who writes melodic deep house and techno. Wil's previous releases are on labels Alola, Lucky Sun, Opilec, Visitor, Audiophile etc.
Review: Following up on the excellent contribute on EYA 006.Zots returns on the label with a solo release. 'Sleepshop EP' is a hypnotic, rolling, swing-fuelled collection of tracks that perfectly embody the vision and spirit of the label .It also comes with a 'Terremoto remix' by Uruguayan artist Omar.Don't miss it!
Review: Tomas Jirku began his career in the golden era of minimal and glitch techno, helping to define the genres through releases on Alien8, Force Inc., Klang Elektronik, and Traum. Over the past two decades, Jirku has built a strong repertoire with his exploratory approach to music, experimenting across genres to develop a sound he can call his own.
"Touching the Sublime" is the culmination of this work, with material transformed through performance, experience and introspection. Inspired by his explorations of the remote wilderness that surrounds his home in Vancouver, Canada, Jirku evokes the philosophical concept of the sublime, where an overwhelming experience of awe confronts us with the limits of our rational minds. The album is a synesthetic auditory expression of Romantic era prose and stories of early alpinism. Bringing epic orchestral compositions and intimate guitar passages together with Jirku's unique sense of space and texture, "Touching the Sublime" draws from his most important collaborators and influences to create a uniquely personal result.
The album is accompanied by a limited edition photo book, where, as an accomplished photographer, Jirku has captured the landscapes and vistas that have been his inspiration.
Review: Head honcho of Thule Records and an originator of the Icelandic techno scene Thor joins forces with Matt Thibideau, one of Canada's finest. The result is a masterfully crafted atmospheric glacial dub techno journey from beginning to the end. Transparent Thoughts EP includes, apart from the original, an astonishing home-brewed remixes by Matt Thibideau's project Altitude and by Thor himself. Altitude mix is deep, and has some serious dub treatment but still packing nice punch for the dance floor. Thor brings his signature sound to his rework; full of heavy dub-techno influences and a mix of techno and deep house beats. Essential for the serious vinyl-jockey. Thule Records is considered by many to be a pioneers in the field of dub-influenced techno music and was a starting point for many of Iceland's most renowned electronic musicians
Review: The second release on the Masaala label explores a brief time in the late 80s and early 90s, when musicians were fusing Acid House with Bhangra. One of Leicester's unsung DJ heroes was Cutmaster Singh, who for this record has revived a selection of his own edits from back in the day. Also included is Cutmaster Singh's massive 'Acid Agah', an unreleased 1994 dubplate that more recently you might have heard being championed by Mr Scruff.
Review: Philoxenia is the new label by Neu Verboten and Luigi Di Venere. The first instalment comes from Steve Marie, a self-taught Paris based Corsican producer. HO! is the name of Marie's release with the Berlin based label. The opening title track is a moody sky of synths, bleeps and piercing acid notes, swaying on a solid breakbeat. B2 'Devil Inside' is an emotional ballad for vampires in love. On the flip the slow beat 'Romanee Conti' conjures the scene of a film noir. 'It doesn't have to be a perfect world', the voices say, while a whipping snare supports the cinematic sonic layering. 'Trancia' is a135BPM dancefloor pleaser. Picture Love Parade between 1997 and 2001: the sun soaks Berlin streets; the city glows and pulsates; thousands gather in peace, for fun. This track brings that glorious world to life, while soundtracking dreams of more joyful days to come.
Review: French old school head Seuil is next up on Cartulis Music. This man has been around for some time and
once again he hits the spot on this strong release on Cartulis Music. 4 cuts that fit into many moments.
From peaktime to after hours and everything im between. Special appearance by great friend of the label LeLoup
on one of the tracks too! Bonus!
Review: **All proceed of this record will go to AFRORACK, a Chicago audio arts organization dedicated to providing modular synthesis education for African American youth.** The enclosure of night promises freedom of another kind. Subterranean fantasies are consecrated in flesh. The voice calls and is answered by a beating pulse. They swell and break in rapturous cycles. On Sombras, Dosis operates from this intimate space, conjuring electroid visions rooted in techno, zynth-pop and nuova-beat.
Review: Solid Groove label boss Aubrey re issues his 1995 ep Ginger Biscuit with the track Ginger Biscuit which was mistakenly named Shimmer on Derick Mays Mix up 5 for Sony Japan, the other three tracks on the ep are classic dub techno at its best
Review: EYA Records marks its 10th release with a solo work from French producer Master Flashhh.The opening track "Too Big to fail" is stripped back yet energetic, driven by 909 drums,atmospheric pads and drifting vocals.A2 "Beat Boxxx" is catchy electro workout with vocal samples from a Dominican Republic radio and 303 acid lines. On the B side "Boulevard Mystere' is an ode to Boulevard Barbes in Paris, the track is characterised by haunting melodies and a warm analogue bass.B2 is a dreamy and evocative number with the use of Juno 106 spacey sounds and 808 drum patterns.Enigma EP is contemplative, audacious and imaginative.
Review: Constant Sound welcome a true stalwart of underground UK house and techno, the one and only 100HZ. Lee Renacre has been delivering distinctive club tracks with an ear-snagging kink since the early '90s, and he's sounding as inspired as ever on this new release. "Jive" skips and swings with urgency, but the synths soar like the loftiest Motor City anthems. "Honkey (Crazy Hats)" is a more obscure affair that uses subtle inflections of rhythm and texture to create an immersive trip anchored to a steady kick. "Ochos" is a dreamier cut that places the emphasis on melody and atmospherics rather than straight up beats, creating a beautiful slice of machine soul in the process.
Review: The fourth release on LONEWOLF comes from a cast of underground talents. Four phenomenal slices of retro-futuristic techno by EYA Records aficionados Manuk,Otis and new affiliates Kepler and AC130.