Thursday, 26 March 2009

Trouble Books – The Endless Pool EP (MIE)

Last year I stumbled upon the MIE head honcho raving about this band Trouble Books and the album The United Colours Of… and I just got drawn into the day dream inducing laid back beauty of it all, its a true gem (and it’s still available to buy from

When I heard the new EP was on its way I had to see what was going on and I wasn’t disappointed. The Endless Pool EP is another little bundle of woozy vibes, like a hazy summer morning the sun breaking through as you open your eyes, stretch and get ready to start your day.

The homemade sound of Trouble Books sounds so simple yet so lush and it makes up a whole world of its own. Warm loops made up of found sounds and playful experimentation meet with subtle instrumentation and then out of the blue you get a story or hook sang from one or both of the duo, which really grounds the atmospheric and organic sounds.

Title track Endless Pool opens with a subtle bit of distortion and beautiful tremolo guitars before some sweet vocals and an armchair orchestra swells into drones, before it all breaks down into stripped back guitar that really makes you gasp after the subtle build of noise. The second track flows seamlessly out of that with tape loops building from that old machine I presume they still have from the last album. Hedgehog is a leafy stroll in the morning due as the sun just starts to rise and you take your first breath of fresh air. Tusk Love Revisited finishes off the EP in a dreamy fashion.

I would call this shoegaze if it weren’t so ambient and snugly it’s more like slippergaze (if that existed), it’s just so down to earth and homely. It’s a country cottage compared to My Bloody Valentine’s citywide soundscapes of fuzz. And that’s in no way a diss, Trouble Books make for a compelling listen. Lie back into The Endless Pool…

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

Kontext – Convex Curved Mirror / Hometown Swamp 12” (Immerse Records)

Originally written for the Sonic Router but we went for MLR’s Resident Advisor version in the end.

If you’re on a minimal infused future garage tip with plenty of glitch and deep vibes then the forthcoming Immerse Records 12” by Russian resident Kontext is the one for you. Techno arpeggio riffs glide over a 2-step riddim and big bass on ‘Convex Curved Mirror’ while the flipside, ‘Hometown Swamp’ dubs it out real deep; it’s a perfect blend of ambient electronica, minimal and dubstep.

Kontext has a sound somewhere between Pole’s electronic yet organic glitches and 2562’s punchy and skippy dubstep techno, with a hint of the more subtle end of minimal maestro Gabriel Ananda’s flowing grooves via the prevalent Basic Channel spaced out dub techno. The bass weight is sold too, with a kind of rhythmic punch to it. He really makes it his own style though with a hypnotic feel and melancholic warmth that oozes quality.

His last EP for Immerse was a killer and this is no exception. Both tracks are subtle builders for the more discerning dance head; let the drums move your feet as the synths take you into a meditative headspace. Sublime.

Sunday, 22 March 2009

NIN/JA 2009

Nine Inch Nails are off on tour and then having a big old break for a while (I'm pretty sure I heard that anyway...) So it's nice to see Trent wacking up some more free music in the form of a tour sampler, featuring unreleased tracks from: Nine Inch Nails, Jane's Addiction and Street Sweeper. It's a nice listen as well if your in need of some scuzzycock swingin' rock acction.

Info // Download:

On top of that I stumbled apon a nice dubstep remix of one of the Ghost tracks, '19 Ghosts III' over at dubstepforum by Zardonic. It's a nice minimal clatering half stepper Grab it here.

Thursday, 19 March 2009

Lloop - 60 Hertz

Original writen for the Sonic Router, but I had to wack it up again as it's such a quality album.

Rich Panciera is badman bass producer Lloop from Austria. He’s been around since day one engineering sounds and generally making noises. Back in the day he could be seen opening for The Orb or building Bass Mind Studio in Brooklyn, not to mention being part of electronic band WE™.

60 Hertz is a wonderful mix of big Soundsystem bangers and Warehouse party monsters with a dub infused jungle vibe squeezed into a fresh dubstep shape. It’s full of dancehall dubs with a cheeky half step and sonic innovation. This is maybe what Distance would sound like if he was brought up around New York’s dance culture.

Highlights include the dubbed out reggae monster, ‘Ritter Dub’ which has a huge low end reminiscent of RSD and King Tubby. There is a really laid back smokers paradise feel to it, with echo drenched dub samples flying at you from all angles. You can also hear a big hip-hop influence in the sampling, which you would expect form someone so engrained in the NY scene. This can be seen in the dancehall bomb, ‘Conch’ pretty well. Un-sheath your pistol fingers and skank out to, ‘ODB Scripta Elegans’ with its monumental bass that drives under some eerie, gritty samples. Big things.

If you’re a fan of deep, dark and moody explorations in sound from the likes of Untold’s rhythmic shuffle, Shackleton’s doom filled bass shakers or Mala’s dubby soundsystem riddims; Lloop may well push your buttons.

60 Hertz by Lloop is available now on Agriculture Records.


Autumn Rains Last Until Those Of Spring from Bupkus on Vimeo.


Monday, 16 March 2009

Mount Kimbie – Maybes EP (Hotflush)

This has to be one of the most wonderful 12” I have heard all year; it’s a beautiful mixture of ambient, off-kilter hip-hop, drone, post-rock and dubstep. The A-side is at a hip-hop pace and the B-side is at about 140 bpm for some dubstep mixing action. Mount Kimbie are Kai and Dom from South East London and this is their debut record.

The title track ‘Maybes’ has some super low slung droning guitar sample that are morphed and shaped into some beautiful chord structures as break beats skip around and flickers of vocals pop on and off in a sublime melody, that brings a little light and hopefulness to the track. It’s all so mournful yet when the beat and vocals kick in it’s a real thing of beauty. I just want to lay back and hear this over and over.

The next track, ‘William’ is on a similar tip but with some super soulful vocal samples from Canadian folk tinged hip-hopper Soso. This track really draws you in with a laid back feel with mellow pianos, clicks, fuzz and a sluggish deep kick then out of know where comes some huge bass that just pulls you out of the haze and takes you on a more physical musical experience.

When you flip the platter the tempo ups but the vibe stays pretty similar which is no mean feat considering the jump. ‘Vertical’ comes on like a more lively version of ‘Maybes’ with a growling guitar style sample that still manages to sound a little sleepy and laid back. Subtle percussive tweaks and bleeps fill the record until some off kilter drum samples really kick things off. Breakdowns pop up out of the blue before building into entirely different and beautiful things, filled with melody and oral pleasure.

‘Taps’ finishes off the platter with bleepy bloopy underwater pings and crackles before a sideways beat takes you into some big bass and chords. I’m pretty addicted to this track; the way it flows into each section and the whole thing progresses is something else. Beautiful melodies break down into an electro percussive section before they come back again and really tug your heartstrings.

Mount Kimbie’s debut EP is something special that anyone after a dose of ambience with a glitchy hip-hop base and some of the most beautiful dreamy sonics around then this is for you. I would love to see a full album from these two.
p.s. for more of this but with style head over to...

Saturday, 14 March 2009

Holy State EP (Holy Roar)

I love getting post from Holy Roar as they always deliver something that’s both brutal and a damn good listen, they usually make me want to jump around throw some rock shapes. This debut new EP from Holy State is no exception!

If you’re after 11 minuets of pure punk energy with a meaty backbone and killer riffs then look no further. The melodies they use really stick in your head it’s a real cathartic joy to listen to. I can only imagine what they are like live kicking out the jams.

They manage to sound pretty brutal even if they aren’t the nosiest band around; I mean they don’t scream too much or over drive the guitars into oblivion. They just have a really beefy sound that rocks hard and is packed full of high-tension energy that makes your head rock hard.

Opening track, ‘Comatones’ is a killer. The tone of the guitar is so lush and in your face and the riffs just hold so much vital energy. The vocals are raw, catchy and passionate and when the track breaks down and builds again it’s a real rush. ‘Solid State Messiah (vs The Valve King)’ keeps things rolling and, ‘Repeat and Fade’ smashes you in the face with a killer hook before, ‘Skeleton Coast’ finishes you off feeling a bit bruised but wanting more, the adrenalin still pumping through your veins.

Holy State’s debut EP is a real beast and well worth a punt, go on feel the fuckers roar!

Holy Roar Spring 09 Sampler
(Features Holy State amongst others)

Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Worriedaboutsatan Arrivals Teaser

The album is close now but for now watch the teaser and download a radio edit of one of the tracks.

Worriedaboutsatan – You’re in my Thoughts

Monday, 9 March 2009

Fabric 45: Omar-S DETROIT

The next instalment for the fantastic and I must say well back on form Fabric mix series is from Detroit native and FXHE owner Omar-S. This guy is all at once a bit of a throwback and a pioneer. His productions hark back to the hay day of Detroit techno with it’s high tech soul edge yet there is something kind of new and refreshing by this approach in this day and age.

All sixteen tracks in the mix are original Omar-S productions from his FXHE Music imprint. I suppose you could compare the approach to Villalobos’ on his Fabric mix in which he pretty much made an original album that would probably be a bit lazy though. Plenty of DJ’s will play exclusives to keep their sets fresh and in demand, and Omar-S has a lot of freshness of his own that really needs some hype.

You really can hear echoes of Chicago house and Detroit techno throughout the whole mix. Tight punchy retro beats play off warm tweaked out synths in a really organic old sounding way. You can hear little quick edits and lo-fi glitches at times that just make the mix sound more human. It sounds like it could have been made any time between Strings of Life and the invention of the Gameboy.

The whole mix is a highlight to be honest but some stand outs have to be, piano led ‘Oasis 13 ½’ which sounds like a long lost E-Dancer number which then blends seamlessly into the brooding darkness of ‘1 Out Of 853 Beats’ with it’s bubbling synth lines and building beats. Tracks like, ‘Psychotic Photosynthesis’ are just irresistible and draw you in with their beautiful melancholic robo-soul chords.

Omar-S really knows how to get you hypnotized in the mix, clicks, bubbles, blips and a whole array of tricks skip around the tracks with a warm minimal sound. Then to throw you out of that collective mass all swaying to the techno beats a soulful vocal comes out of know where like on, ‘The Maker’ and makes you look around and feel that human side to the dance. It’s a living breathing beats he has managed to create here.

Wednesday, 4 March 2009

Harmonic 313 – When Machines Exceed Human Intelligence (Warp)

Original writen for Sonic Router, the excelent dubstep / bass blog.

Harmonic 313 is one of the many pseudonyms of prolific electronic producer Mark Pritchard. When Machines Exceed Human Intelligence is a strange beast it’s a little bit to rigid and robotic to be a purely off-kilter hip-hop album in the vain of Flying Lotus’ organic grooves and it’s to slow to be dubstep, it’s kind of just Harmonic 313 I guess.

There is an air of the retro styling of old skool electro and Detroit techno in these hip-hop beats, Pritchard has taken these influences fed it through an Amstrad sideways and pumped it full of bass on the way out.

The gritty opener ‘Dirtbox’ sets the tone with bags of attitude and beastly sine waves. Things flow along nicely until the sublime wonky dancehall dub’s of ‘Koln’ and ‘Galag-a’ really takes hold with some really early Warp sounding synth melodies. I keep finding the bass of ‘Call to Arms’ going round and round my head at times as well. The acidic bleep tones of ‘Flaash’ make me want to dig out Al Niahfish (The Soul) by Hasim because of its old skool electro style.

At times it’s a little too rigid for my liking and the computer voices spelling Harmonic 313 grate a little after a while. Then the tracks with raps already sound like something is a little bit missing or a tad dated. But When Pritchard is on form he really is on top of his game.

If you’re a fan of big bass, hip-hop beats and electronica you can’t go far wrong than check out Harmonic 313.

Monday, 2 March 2009

Lukid – Forma

Werk Discs come up with the goods again with a sublime little album from label mainstay Lukid. He brings a sublime and dreamy edge to this thing called wonk, If you’ve been playing Los Angeles by Flying Lotus just a little bit to much for about a year now and your in need of some more of the good stuff, then look no further than Forma.

Where FlyLo brought the crackle and breaks, Lukid does things a little more subtle with a similar lilt and big synths but more emphasis on dreamy loops and soundscapes.

The whole album is beautiful and has an effortless flow to it all the way through, but if I had to pick one highlight it would be the track slap bang in the middle, ‘Chord’. It teases you in with the aforementioned chord looped and looped and looped… before dropping some quality off centre beats and a bassline that really tops things off in sublime style. The bass drones and hits all the sweet spots that vibrate you to your core, all while sticking to the beat and making your feet move. I can’t stop rewinding it, most wheeled track of 09 for me so far.

Forma is full of little chilled gems, it’s a real joy to listen to. Its like someone turned up the heat to make the aqua in aquacrunk a nice temperature to sink into and let wash over you. Lukid’s bass is the best kind of bubble bath. It’s a bit like finding yourself in the scene in the matrix where he wakes up in the goo, but in a good way…

Lukid has soul in his beats a warm, deep soul that really shines. When he uses samples they are subtle and woven deep into the beats and bass to make some beautiful inventive hip-hop, ‘Ski Fly’ is a brilliant example of this. There are many more within Forma though from the delicate opener, ‘Ice Nine’ through the dubbed out block party jam of, ‘Veto’.

If you have ever found yourself up late at night listening to Gangstarr or The Pharcyde in a bit of a haze and really got into the groove and forgot the MC’s existed for a moment, or as I said played a bit to much FlyLo then Forma By Lukid is a step in the right direction.

Sunday, 1 March 2009

Free Holy Roar Spring Sampler

Just a quick one from me today as I'm off out to catch some comedy, I just found this from the wonderful Holy Roar and thought I would share it with you lot. It's a free sampler of, 'New songs, new bands, rare songs, classics. Free. Win? Win' stuff from Holy Roar!

Tracklisting -

1. Brontide - Crunk Anansie
2. Youves - Big Arexic
3. Holy State - Repeat and Fade
4. The Ergon Carousel - Ironclad
5. the_Network - 500 pounds of idiot
6. Throats - Reign of Low (tape version)
7. Maths - Untitled Album Demo
8. Cutting Pink With Knives - Aylburton
9. Rolo Tomassi - Cirque Du Funk (4Music Session version)
10. November Coming Fire - Return of the Black Dog
11. Jealous - Ruins


Hold tight for some words on Holy State the new EP from the Holy Roar crew.
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