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Ian Shirley – Turn Up The Strobe: The KLF, The JAMs, The Timelords – A History

Cherry Red

Ian Shirley - Turn Up The StrobeI saw that car. You know which one. In Stockwell, where I used to stay at a mate’s brother’s squat. I think Thatcher On Acid or Blyth Power or someone lived there. It just sat on the street a few doors down and we took polaroid pictures of each other lying in vaguely provocative poses on the bonnet. Eventually, someone yelled at us to fuck off, so we did.

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Drew McDowall – Unnatural Channel

Dais

Drew McDowall - Unnatural Channel“This is what it’s like.” A softly whispered, wraith-like voice appears during one of the tracks and it’s an exemplar: this is one (relatively) short descent into a steaming woodland of madness. There’s great chasms opening up all over the land and we’re listening to ourselves being swallowed.

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Radionics Radio: An Album Of Musical Thought Frequencies

Sub Rosa

Radionics Radio - An Album Of Musical Thought FrequenciesIt’s becoming a little unpopular, and there seems a tiresome insistence creeping in that music should stand for itself (I completely disagree), but I love electronic music that’s about something; I love a history and a context. The words surrounding a release are as important to me as the music within. Almost.

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Cosey Fanni Tutti – Art, Sex, Music

Faber and Faber

Cosey Fanni Tutti - Art, Sex, MusicA long time ago, I wrote that Genesis P Orridge singing “marmalade” in Throbbing Gristle‘s “Hit By A Rock” on D.O.A. was the key moment in industrial music, a moment that most of the “industrial” artists that stomped around in the wake of TG utterly missed. You couldn’t imagine SPK or Clock DVA or Nine Inch Nails or whoever having “marmalade” in their lyrics

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Fujiya & Miyagi – Fujiya & Miyagi

Impossible Objects Of Desire

Fujiya & Miyagi -Fujiya & MiyagiI didn’t ask for this, but it came anyway. I’d been a Fujiya and Miyagi sceptic: too accommodating, too precise, too Brighton.

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Gnod – Just Say No To The Psycho Right-Wing Capitalist Fascist Industrial Death Machine

Rocket Recordings

Gnod - Just Say No To The Psycho Right-Wing Capitalist Fascist Industrial Death MachineThere will be many howls, and here’s one of the first out of the blocks. Gnod can meander, at times (and I like their meanderings), but here the rage is palpable; this is a headbutt into the side of a fast-moving machine. Hawkwind on double-speed, ditching the mushrooms for Brown Acid and amphetamania.

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Téléplasmiste – Frequency Is The New Ecstasy

House Of Mythology

Téléplasmiste – Frequency Is The New EcstasyIt’s all in the trails. In a recent, small-scale, study carried out by researchers at Imperial College London and the University of Kaiserslautern in Germany, participants took LSD and carried out a number of tasks. The experimenters documented the experiences and noted that tasks that required linguistic and semantic application seemed to be particularly affected

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UnicaZürn – Transpandorem

Touch

UnicaZürn - TranspandoremSometimes, the press releases just absolutely nail it and I hate it when they do. This latest release from the band that fell from the belly of The Amal Gamal Ensemble came with a description that’s clearly trying to ruin my review before it’s even got going.

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Electric Sewer Age – Bad White Corpuscle

Hallow Ground

Electric Sewer Age - Bad White CorpuscleI’m not going to use the C word, but he’s not hiding from it. As much as Danny Hyde is his own man, and Electric Sewer Age is his own creation, there are several tantalising trails and in-jokes and red herrings for the fanatic(al). Some of these traces are obvious

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The Other Without – The Other Without

Heavy Rural

The Other Without - S/TThis sounds like home.

It’s slow, like Somerset. It creeps up on you, like the sunlight splitting off the top of Glastonbury Tor. It gets where it’s going in its own time; there’s absolutely nothing about this release which feels forced. Neil Mortimer (Urthona) and Michael J York (Cyclobe, Téléplasmiste, The Stargazer’s Assistant) have a beautiful sense of quietude as their music crawls majestically over the landscape.

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Momus – Pubic Intellectual: An Anthology 1986-2016

Cherry Red

Pubic Intellectual: An Anthology 1986-2016Nobody is evil, nobody is good All the guilty people have misunderstood

I have a bit of a man-crush on Momus. It goes right back to 1987, just after this retrospective begins. He can’t do any wrong (even when he does lots of things wrong) and I’m probably the wrong person to do this review…

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Various Artists – Strange-Eyed Constellations

Disco Gecko

Various Artists – Strange-Eyed ConstellationsI’m a sucker for this kind of thing. I totally bought into the Planet Dog/Shamanarchy angle as a teenager and still buy in now. This compilation has been put together by Toby Marks AKA Banca de Gaia, one of the heads of the scene in the ’90s, a guy who used to be everywhere, whose music was played at and defined by West Country beach parties and forest raves, who always seemed to be spinning.

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Andrew Liles – First Monster Last Monster Always Monster / Cover Girls

Dirter

Andrew Liles - First Monster Last Monster Always MonsterAndrew Liles, the second Duke of Burgundy, third in line to the old French throne and now a broken-hearted (re)publican millionaire (his fortune in bacterial warfare, a subsidiary of Pershing), scores when he wants.

He spends his time at his Bavarian recording castle, chasing peasants, scaring locals and recording recording recording. There’s Liles smears everywhere, even if you think you don’t own one of his records you’d be wrong. Look deeper, one of the Monster things will be there. He kicks around with Nurse With Wound, of course, and plays occasionally with Current 93‘s gnostic mass; but these two releases, with Andrew on his own (apart from all the cover girls, that is) sees him doing what he does best; ploughing a lone furrow, doing what the hell he wants.

First Monster is

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Nurse With Wound – The Sylvie and Babs High Thigh Companion

United Dirter

Nurse With Wound - The Sylvie and Babs High Thigh CompanionSeriously plunderphonic, this baby plays Surrealist ping-pong with ’50s advertising, sped-up exotica, Brat Pack crooners and virtually anything else that fevered mind of Steven Stapleton could chuck in there (it’s little wonder this was three years in the making).

I can imagine Stapleton dressed in his crow-black finery rooting through the charity bins, this perverted twinkle in his eye as his mischievous mind affixes to new trajectories. Trajectories that fit into the loonier end of the Nurse spectrum, cross-pollinated in disruptive sonics and edit room discards, until everything is writhing round for dominance in a heap of malevolent Slinkys. If you’re driving back down the motorway at some ungodly hour, dog-tired, these dislocations will

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Graham Bowers & Nurse With Wound – Mutation

Red Wharf

Graham Bowers & Nurse With Wound - MutationThey’ve been here before. Well, not quite here but near enough. This isn’t the first collaboration and, on this evidence, it won’t be the last. They’ve found that rubbing up against each other generates just enough electricity (teenage lightning, perhaps).

I’ve been in and out of the NWW canon for what seems like all the years now; I drift away, malcontent; having heard it all before (the creaks, the sighs, the gushes and rattles) and then something drags me back into the fold again, some little release slips out and makes me reconsider the oeuvre all over again (and inevitably sends me back to all the other stuff I have; re-listening, re-discovering). So it’s been with Steven Stapleton since I used to play out his Automating Volume 2 (still my favourite) record on

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