Review: Surgeon and Regis have been collaborating as British Murder Boys for decades, though in recent times it's tended to take the form of occasional live performances. Like their previous album, 2014's "Live In Tokyo", "Fire In The Still Air" is a non-stop recording of a live performance - in this case one that formed part of Berlin's Atonal Festival last August. It's a thrilling and largely breathless excursion; a non-stop, 51-minute ride in which Surgeon handles beats and electronics, and Regis processed sounds and growling, gravel-voiced vocals. The duo's techno credentials shine through, of course, but it's their industrial and EBM inspirations that come to the fore throughout. For much of the set, they come across like an updated, techno-propelled re-incarnation of early '80s Cabaret Voltaire, and that's not a bad thing at all.
Review: Last time we heard from Australian outfit My Disco back in 2015, they had eschewed their psych-rock roots in favour of a more dystopian post-punk sound bristling with white noise and oodles of industrial intent. Four years on, they've refreshed their sound further, with new album "Environment" re-casting them as doom-loving purveyors of dark ambience, paranoid industrial soundscapes, buzzing music concrete collages and droning, decidedly dystopian experimental workouts (think Vatican Shadow man Dominick Fernow's various beat-less projects and you're close). While it's a big shift, the resultant music is rarely less than superb, offering dark thrills and clandestine claustrophobia in equal measure.
Review: Brandishing a dark sound that draws from electronics and string based instruments and adds a touch of the crepuscular to finish, the Lupine fancying OAKE have become a most suitable act for the current iteration of Karl O'Connor's Downwards label. First emerging on DNS early last year with the Offenbarung EP, the Berlin duo have subsequently committed another EP of claustrophobic electronics to the label as well as contributing to the rather fine Halha compilation. One of the final Downwards acts of 2014 is to issue Auferstehung, an 11 track debut album from OAKE which offers the pair more of a canvas to work with. With a title that translates as "resurrection" and a rather opaque theme that apparently "marks an end and a beginning at the same time," there is plenty that is open to interpretation about Auferstehung, and the album is largely free of any techno aspirations. Instead OAKE elect to coax you deeper into their web of sonic paranoia, which at times is a joyously crushing experience.
Review: Some 13 years after founding the fabulous Minimal Wave label, Veronica Vasicka has finally got round to releasing some music of her own. The fact that it's appearing on Regis and Female's long-serving Downwards imprint is a good indication of what's on offer: dark, stylish and mind-altering machine music full of raw, analogue electronics. Vasicka's original version of "From Here" draws great influence from vintage minimal wave, though its' heavy bass, industrial-strength IDM drums and rugged electronic pulses are bang up to date. Regis heads up the remix package, delivering a pulsating version that sits somewhere between new wave, electro and dark Italo-disco. Elsewhere, Paul Kendal's mix brilliantly blends dark ambient and fuzz-laden guitars, while the Chasm Mix is a bustling, delay-laden trip into intergalactic new wave territory.