Review: Earlier this year Minimal Wave offshoot provided one of this year's most visceral dancefloor weapons in Kino-I, the debut from Doug Lee's new An-I project. Taking inspiration from techno, jack, industrial and punk, An-I successfully drew a line under some of the Berlin-based artist's previous disco-flavoured endeavours. And then some! If you like the Kino-I 12" you will love the new triplet of An-I productions housed on this appropriately titled Gutz 12". The title track alone should come with a health warning; such is the furious onslaught of machine funk it contains, whilst the unnerving "Rut" is the most schizophrenic production you will hear this year. Best of all id closing track "Save Us" sounds like a cross between in Aeternam Vale and Silent Servant. Pressed on a rather thick and dashing slab of magenta orange vinyl!
Review: The Bruta Non Calculant duo have only released one previous EP but they're certainly turning some heads fast. As you probably well know, the Cititrax label doesn't deal with weakness and after their last release by An I, we were expecting something real tasty. "Civilisation" sets a macabre tone to the opening of the album, with wailing pads and sparse beats creating a sort of sonic, urbanised landscape, whereas other tracks like "The Perfect One" and "World In A Tear" sound something like Joy Division on a techno come-down. There's plenty of feedback manipulation and circuit-bending going on for the entire span of the work, placing Bruta Non Calculant on our new watch-list of utter madmen and all-round legends. Sick.
Review: Given the underground acclaim heaped on Marie Davidson's previous albums - ultra-stylish affairs that blend elements of minimal wave, dark Italo-disco, off-kilter electro and moody ambient - it's little surprise to see her popping up on Minimal Wave offshoot Cititrax. The album's nine tracks are largely sharp, rough and fuzzy, with sparse-but-dense drum machines rhythms underpinning bouncy, delay-laden synth lines, thrusting electronics and Davidson's sleazy, spoken word vocals. It's an attractive combination that guarantees thrills throughout, from the almost claustrophobic throb of "Denial", to the mutant electrofunk bounce of "Good Vibes".
Review: Minimal Wave sister label Cititrax have been teasing fans with the prospect of a Further Reductions album from Shawn O'Sullivan and Katie Rose and the six tracks on Woodwork more than live up to expectations! Although O'Sullivan will be known to most for his industrial leaning techno productions for labels like Avian, L.I.E.S. and The Corner, the Further Reductions collaboration with Katie Rose dates back as far as 2008, formed to explore a vocal-led, contemporary take on the minimal wave sound. According to Cititrax, Woodwork combines the influences of classic techno and early house to create "super lush and atmospheric tracks that work both on and off the dance floor." There's something XTRMNTR era Primal Scream about "High End Basics" whilst "Void Of Course" sounds like gloopy acid house slowed down to a deathly crawl, the rest you should experience for yourself!
Review: Mutual Dreaming, the second album from Innergaze, casts its members Aurora Halal and Jason Letkiewicz as stateside contemporary versions of our own Chris & Cosey. The ideas shown in Innergaze's recording career to date seem more fully formed across the eight tracks on this album courtesy of Minimal Wave offshoot Cititrax. Mutual Dreaming is undeniably more coherent than the sugary hypno-disco of the duo's 100% Silk drop last year. It's possible to say Halal and Letkiewicz have gleaned more than titular influence from the Mutual Dreaming club night they run in Brooklyn, the various guests that have joined them freeing up their minds musically and allowing them to explore ideas new. There's a saturation of sound throughout that is as vivid as Halal's video work and from the opening, almost brutal synth and drum machine manipulation of the title track you can hear fully the fingers of Letkiewicz.
Review: ** Repress ** If you've been keeping abreast of all things Minimal Wave this year, you'll probably have picked up on Veronica Vasicka hinting at a forthcoming split release from Silent Servant and Broken English Club, the new project from UK techno man Oliver Ho. We've certainly been eagerly awaiting it her at Juno HQ and it's great to see Violence And Divinity live up to and surpass these expectations! Silent Servant mans the A Side with two tracks that will be familiar to anyone that's been lucky enough to catch his live sets of late, indeed it's almost too easy to visualise the flashing strobes as the pummelling EBM lines of "Cut Unconscious" unravel and beat you down. The two accompanying productions from Ho's Broken English Club dovetail nicely, but veer off into more wave orientated territory, with "Divinity" sounding quite like some of the earlier material put out by In Aeternam Vale. In a word superb.
Review: Future Fusion is the killer debut set from Streetwalker, the collaborative project of White Car's Elon Katz and Beau Wanzer of Mutant Beat Dance/L.I.E.S. fame. The DIY ethos of primitive Chicago house seeps into the pair's work as Streetwalker, with the material that forms Future Fusion recorded live in one take. This was subsequently recorded without any overdubs or MIDI to one inch tape, with the resultant six tracks resonating with a loose, primal energy. Sitting uneasily between house, industrial, synth-pop and EBM, Future Fusion is one of those records that you simply cannot second guess. This being a Cititrax release, the presentation is second to none too, with some superb illustration work from the well respected graphic artists Spencer Longo, but in truth the music should be the real focus of attention here.