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Archives by month/year

The Orb – History of the Future: The Island Years

Island

The Orb - History of the FutureSpace is the place, and this is where The Orb seemed to come from 25 years ago when the first single hit the racks in 1989; it was like a message from the nether regions of deep space. “A Huge Ever-Growing Pulsating Brain That Rules From The Centre of the Ultraworld” mixed Tangerine Dream kosmische with Eno’s ambience but still with a hint of the dancefloor at the same time. This odd hybrid would herald The Orb on to planet Earth and almost create a genre all of its own. “A Huge Ever-Growing Pulsating Brain…” is presented twice on this wonderful four disc set, the first time as its original 12” mix which I bought all those

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Shackleton – Freezing Opening Thawing

Woe To The Septic Heart

Shackleton – Freezing Opening ThawingJust in time for a mordant shot at the Easter Number 1, here comes Shackleton again; his last album was a work of necessarily flawed genius, drifting across lines, missing beats and breaks, losing itself in the mystery of moments. It ought to have been everyone’s favourite album of the year but often got a little missed, as if it was just too singular. You ought to be ashamed of yourself.

This 12” is less fluttery, more robust, a return to Form (as opposed to a return to form which would demean him and this and is, anyway, duckfuckingly wrong in all ways). This has a sheered off quality, like the inside of a chainsawed cow. It seems likely

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Rapoon – To West and Blue

Zoharum

Rapoon - To West And BlueTo West And Blue is the 50th (!!!) album by Rapoon, and it trades in dark ambient’s typical deep space cosmic horror for mudflats and marshlands, making for a superb movie of the mind. The album was inspired, in part, by a part of Britain where Robin Storey, here known as Rapoon and also co-founder of influential industrial terrorists :zoviet-france:, grew up.

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Conrad Schnitzler – Silber/Gold

Bureau B

Conrad Schnitzler - SilberSilber

When most people were glam(ming) it up in the mid seventies Mr. Conrad was studio tinkering with possible futures. Messing with the building blocks of rhythm, harmony and melody to bleed a snakey elixir that formed this sixty minute noir-riddled masterwork, suitably blighted in whir kittens and sci-fi weevils. The tracks, frustratingly untitled (as they are on Gold), ooze with encroaching darkness fish and elasticated light. Circuitry floating buoyant bayonets of percussion and cog-scarred arabesques, later telepathically implanted into Aphex Twin‘s skull, seeding comparison, evolution, gloop-swooping suspensions feeding the circle game for generations to come.

Conrad Schnitzler - GoldConrad Schnitzler – Silber/Gold […]

Jojo Hiroshige/Paal Nilssen-Love/Pika/Lasse Marhaug – Osaka Fortune

Premier Sang

Osaka FortuneOsaka Fortune is a fiery four-way fusion. <\\….. Jojo Hiroshige of the legendary Hijokaidan chewing up his guitar’s frets… Lasse Marhaug siphoning the buzzing veins of electric chairs…. Afrirampo‘s Pika dynamo smacking the skins and yelling like Annabella’s bow wow phantom daughter whilst Paal Nilssen-Love throws his percussive toys down the stairs, up the walls, face plants them into the concrete ….//>

As you could imagine, this is a glorious mess, a satisfying noise fest giving this bleak January cage a good shakin’. A gathering where subtlety is sent flying in a corroded ear soup of fedback slash obliques, the cccraz-a-rash smazzzzsch of tight skin and metal caught up in the jzfzzzzeeeeft whir of right angled dental nightmares. It’s all coming at you

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SCNTST – Self Therapy

Boyznoize

SCNTST - Self TherapyOn Self Therapy, the debut LP from 20 year old German producer SCNTST, Bryan Müller smashes the fourth wall, managing to span the dark space between representation and the real thing.

SCNTST’s productions are a love song: a love song to video games and machines, as well as real life, real romance. On one hand, SCNTST’s music is the most badass menu music you’ve ever heard in yr life, and in the other mitten, it’s the most banging, thudding techno you’ve ever heard in yr life.

First and foremost, Self Therapy is by and for people that love electronic music – people that love the sounds of synths; the placement of sounds; a solid, stately beat. It’s music for ravers, and

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Laibach – Iron Sky OST (director’s cut)

Mute

Laibach – Iron Sky OST (director’s cut)Originally released a couple of years back as a single CD, Laibach‘s astonishing soundtrack to the cult crowd-funded Nazis-on-the-moon fantasy Iron Sky returns as a double album (available on vinyl too, in a luxurious gatefold package), extended, remixed and altogether managing the difficult feat of being yet more epic than before.

The soundtrack is packed with the sort of low end orchestral rumble which cinema still does so well and headphone listening simply doesn’t; come to think of it, an(other) edition as a multi-channel super audio CD – or hell, an uncompressed blu-ray audio disc – would probably sound incredible. But ’til then, the vinyl and/or CD will do just fine, as Laibach bring the immensity of both militaristic

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Time Attendant – Treacherous Orb EP

More Than Human

Time Attendant - Treacherous OrbWith a name which immediately evokes time travel (or the expectation thereof) and hence perhaps stepping metaphorically and metaphysically out of the linear and quotidian, Paul Snowdon sends the listener on a trip across distances and the aeons. Lifting off with the fluttery electronica of “Iridium Watcher,” side one soon gives way to more radiophonic sounds of “Voiders Delight.” If the Time Attendant persona were to be compared to Dr Who, he or she is definitely more akin to those earlier papier-mache set and weird soundtrack generations which proceeded the glossier CGI reboot of the twenty-first century.

Guest Dolly Dolly‘s poetry on “Haxapod Star Shuffle” wouldn’t have seemed far out of place interjected in the weirder parts of a Seventies BBC radio science

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Rose Kallal and Mark O Pilkington – Implicate Explicate

We Can Elude Control

Rose Kallal and Mark O Pilkington - Implicate ExplicateFilm-maker and and sound artist Rose Kallal and Mark Pilkington (The Asterism, Raagnagrok, Stëllä Märïs Drönë Örchësträ, etc.) collaborated on the soundtrack to Kallal’s Implicate Explicate installation for three 16mm projectors in Glasgow in 2012, and this EP results from the music they produced together. In its original mix, Kallal and Pilkington manipulate the heavy drones and reverbs to shudder the speakers and mush things up generally, the sound of modulars in excelsis and radiophonic fun being had by all. Getting Ekoplekz in to rework the sounds results in a slightly less dubby experience than might at first be expected, the buzzing whirr of the basic mix subsumed in a drum loop of surprisingly sprightly

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Felix Kubin mit Mitch & Mitch – Bakterien & Batterien

Lado ABC (CD)/Gagarin (LP)

Felix Kubin mit Mitch & Mitch - Bakterien & BatterienAmbitious as can be, mercurial music manipulator Felix Kubin joins Mitch & Mitch to generate ten tracks of modern big band electronic library music. Firmly placing tongue in cheek and putting on their stern faces, the mischievous collaborators offer up glockenspiel-friendly, brass-bound bacchanalia to jive the hepcats off their seats and into a swirl of ra-ra randomisers and stereophonic soundtrack swing, hopping and skipping gleefully from eras to ears.

What it is, dig; what it is, is rad, cool, smooth with a lightly-concealed spikiness, lively with an edge. This album suggests a sharp zoot suit or arm-length gloves and an electronic cigarette in a long, long holder should be worn and puffed ostentatiously while

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Luke Fowler – Fowl Tapes II

Dekorder

Luke Fowler – Fowl Tapes IIWith a title which perhaps both echoes and references The Faust Tapes, Luke Fowler‘s second edition of electronic murmurings sets out a distinct palette of scrawls synthesis which skitters and frolics with a studied playfulness. Despite the title, this is actually Fowler’s début album, edited down from many hours of recordings – and occasionally added to – by friend and collaborator Richard Youngs (see Lurists‘ Red & Blue, also released by Dekorder, for an album they worked on together). Those curious to hear Fowl Tapes I (chock full of collaborations with the likes of Aaron Moore and Daniel Padden of Volcano the Bear, Chris Hladowski and more) will be glad to hear that there are download codes included with the

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Rock ‘n’ Roll Ritual: Wooden Shjips/Plankton Wat (live at the Doug Fir Lounge)

Portland, Oregon 16 January 2014

It was a misty night in Portland. A thick gray pea soup clung to the street lights, obscuring any signs of modernity, anything outside of a three-foot nimbus. This Thursday evening had a particularly timeless feel – it could’ve been 1868, 1968, 2068.

The faithful have always gathered at night, apart from the common sense and rationality of the day-walkers. Whether it be antlered druids gathered at stone circles or juke joints in the ’20s, drinking and carousing to the devil’s music. People gather in the dark, to dance, to love, to dream. Perhaps this is part of why Christianity was such a harsh enemy of witchcraft? Witches stay up too late to make productive worker drones.

There was a new skin for the old ceremony at the Doug Fir, whose log cabin interior became an alternate reality for tonight’s double-header: a hometown show for

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Acid Mothers Temple & Space Paranoid – Black Magic Satori

Safety Meeting

Acid Mothers Temple & Space Paranoid - Black Magic SatoriInspired by Sabbath, Acid Mothers Temple & Space Paranoid seem to do black better than Black Sabbath ever imagined. That stoner bass-line on the opening title track giving out a deep seriously trough-like muscle. A rippling crypt-like foundation for Kawabata Makoto to riff-witch all over, his frets carving out super-bright highways.

Veering into the uncharted with breathtaking ease, as if you could see Hendrix grinning in there, a fiery bonfire picking out his wide-eyed appreciation, the amp shredding its skin like some super-nova, sonically enveloping the space, gouging away Okano Futoshi‘s percussion and Hagashi Hiroshi‘s keyline fantasy completely. The bass and guitar left to battle for supremacy, lyrically alive like some malleable obelisk scimitared into a hydra-head

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eMMplekz – Your Crate Has Changed

Mordant Music

EMMPlekz - Your Crate Has ChangedOn Your Crate Has Changed, the chimerical union of the wicked Baron Mordant and resident sonar technician Nick Edwards, better known to the world as Ekoplekz, eMMplekz rally against the digital diaspora with bricks, knives; words and confusion.

If you picture the polished perfection of pop culture glitterati as the grotesque, stretch-faced bureaucracy of Terry Gilliam‘s Brazil, then eMMplekz are the freedom fighters and rogue air-conditioning repairmen. The resistance lives in spidered catacombs of dead tech and obsolete, mouldering information, praying in dusty tongues in the dead of night.

While the freedom of information yields many wonders (like the ability to hear this music in the first place, most likely), there is a danger in the gradual mapping and

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Papir meets Electric Moon – The Papermoon Sessions

Sulatron

Papir meets Electric Moon – The Papermoon SessionsWhoa! Let’s get things straight from the start – this is psychedelic music, pure and simple. This is not pretending to be out there, it IS out there. Both Papir and Electric Moon have a way of playing that turns your brain to mulch and then kicks it out of your head towards a multi-coloured sun. This meeting of fried minds on the edge could really only produce one type of music and that is bloody great slabs of sounds for exploring the universe.

“Farewell Mr. Space Echo” starts with sombre sounding guitar being plucked in a drifting way, as if the tune is escaping from the hands that play them rather than being thought about. The cymbals begin gently until they build into

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