Vinyl release of the sprawling full-length from Omar-S. The collection of 13 previously unreleased tracks feel suitably epic, the producer flexing his ability to tackle a diversity of styles with a hat tip to the album form. "Be Yoself" emerges as the first in a number of tracks that will be included among past FXHE classics, and has the producer laying thoughtful synth ambience over an massive bass line. "Let It Ride" could be a mission statement for the album - Omar-S is that rare producer who leaves well enough alone, in this instance lacing a tough groove with some virtuosic piano playing for nearly seven minutes. "Helter Shelter" sounds as corroded as a Huerco S. track, while the lack of melody and subtle drums of "Tardigrade's" recall Omar's oft-quoted admonition to lazy djs: "Yeah bitch, that’s all the record do. Yep your lazy ass needs to do some other shit with it."
The title track has Omar-S indulging his sensitive side to stunning effect. A subtle Rhodes chord and brief synth figure bring in a mid-track melodic line of heartbreaking optimism. Closer "It's Money In the D" looks back to the moody piano nostalgia of "Just Ask The Lonely". Another winner.
Amazing new album from the Border Community boss. It's been seven years since Holden's last full-length statement, time the producer has spent immersing himself in krautrock and the american lo-fi underground. The resulting album is loose and heavy on one-take modular synth recordings. The album stands in contrast to a deluge deluge of predictable, compressed dance productions.
That said, Holden's made it clear that this is dance music, of a sort, and when the acoustic drums emerge on "Renata" (conveniently timed at 120 bpm), this assertion rings true. That said, there's nary a kick drum intro on this album, and the pool of influences is much deeper than your average club ready 12". "Inner-City 125" is a more ominous take on The Caretaker's ballroom ambience, "Rannoch Dawn" sounds like the Rune Grammofon camp's take on shambolic Krautrock, while "Seven Stars" sounds like a PBS Mystery! soundtrack obscured by analog extrapolations. Only "Gone Feral" hints at the wooly pastoralism of Holden's previous productions.
Timely reissue of classic material from the influential New York disco/house duo. The boogie/italo tinged classics here have maintained dancefloor status for over a decade, a testament to this music's staying power. "Muira" is here in all it's classic disco glory, but don't forget "Caught Up", one of the duo's most meditative, emotional cuts. Kelly Polar's gorgeous string arrangements will make you swoon, the mid-range bass and Rhodes will make you move.
The Black Madonna
Accomplished new EP from Chicago's Marea Vierge-Noire, a.k.a. The Black Madonna. Like most of the releases in the relatively new Argot imprint's catalog, the compositional strength of these tracks is astounding. The addition of Black Madonna's nimble musicianship makes for an intensely focused set. A-Side "A Jealous Heart Never Rests" begins with a melodramatic sample worthy of it's dramatic title, but is buoyed by a disco bassline that eventually starts to mirror Syclops' (Maurice Fulton) left-field hit "Where's Jason's K". Flipside "We Can Never Be Apart" captures the ecstasy of Joe Smooth's "Promise Land" and repackages it for the drive home. Great stuff.
Juju & Jordash
Deep, psychedelic dance music which "“deals with the Holocaust, Israel, victimhood and aggression; a concept that was born while working on a soundtrack for the silent german film Der Golem (the one from 1920).” The 2nd in 4 planned twelves for Golf Channel, these tracks seem to be a musical exploration of the collective internal monologue of doomed Jews traveling by train to concentration camps. The duo's approach involves anchoring the rhythm around a ghostly train bell and ever-modulating bass arpeggio. The train's bells become elongated synth creep in at the end of the 16-minute journey. The a's slow journey is given a floor ready rework for "Coffin Train (Getaway)", which may symbolize creative resistance to the flip's grim themes.
Big, nasty club tracks from Hysterics, Girl Unit's EBM-influenced alias. Proper warehouse vibes a barely a melody in sight. "Pleasuredrome" is all huge, metallic percussion, while the original mix of "Code Switch" seems meant to suck all the air out of the club in the best way possible. Tracks for the dj whose sets typically begin after 1 am.
DJ Sotofett/Prins Thomas
Super cool Prins Thomas remix pack containing three divergent versions from the inscrutable DJ Sotofett (Sex Tags Mania). The 411 Disco Dub continues with the loose, cowbell driven funk present on Sotofett's remix of Madteo's "We Doubt". The new age mix seems to be a direct hat tip to Steve Hillage's classic Rainbow Dome Musick.
Daniel Martin-McCormick notches yet another step in his transition from underground art punk to respected international house producer with this 12" for Berlin's Workshop. DMM is up for the task. A-side "Ice Drift (Stalker Mix) floats some heady chord shifts over insistent percussion, while "Pulsed" might be the young producer's most serious dance track ever (with the self-released "Culture Clubs" coming in close second).
New this week:
Sam KDC/LUNAR SEAS EP 12"
Max Essa/WON TON SUNRISE LP