M O S Recordings
Heckle x M O S, a match made in heaven. The pairing lives up to expectation. Cactus Jack obliterates with a chunky acid line, new wave snare and subtle guitar lead. Birds of Vertigo is another demonstration of brute force, yet the record's highlight is the title track, which turns some melancholy Juno chords into a shimmering, psychedelic banger. Recommended.
Home Taping is Killing Music
Percolating disco/house rollers from the prolific and tasteful Italian producer. The Music Lives has a classic-King Street feel, building momentum with a skyward bound organ riff and eventually working in moody vocals before ending with a loose percussion jam. The final track leans into a Mahogani-inspired sample cut, all florid Rhodes, disco strings and crack rhythm section holding it down.
Archival recordings that sound like they could have been made and pressed up last week. Of course, we are in the midst of a lo-fi zeitgeist, but these tracks are remarkable regardless of trends. Ovi Reese has a strange proto-electro feel with unidentified synth noises floating in and out of the mix. Hypnotic highlight Picking Flowers for You uses a simple 303 line and wobbly synth tones to nuance a plaintive synth refrain. Closer March of the Cheesecrackers is lighthearted as the title would imply, a short, rudimentary drum track followed by a solitary deep pad.
Gifted and Blessed
Expertly paced full-length statement from Los Angeles' best kept secret. Well, that's not exactly true. FACT and Kyle Hall are fans, but it's obvious from this record that GB is underground because he's developing virtuosic studio skills. So many moods are contained within. Sol sounds like Steve Reich scoring a PBS documentary about hummingbirds. There are a number of tracks that approximate prog through modular experiments. Boogie and library music are also appropriate reference points. But then there is the more evocative, filmic work, such as the unclassifiable Rain Dance and the Carpenter-esque Tesla's Notebook. The album takes a welcome contemplative dip as it winds itself down, with GB burying the most dj friendly track, Made it Through, deep within the 57 minutes of music.
Smell the Flesh
Encompassing hardware based techno from Martin Skogehall aka MRSK aka Fishermen. This is deep, modulating big room stuff for fans of Ancient Methods. An unexpected hint of light slips in via a subtle pad on Closed Walls. Unsettled Conflict has STF wielding a cowbell and title with malice, perhaps copping a move or two from Vatican Shadow. Hail Congo is the records catchiest and most uncompromising track.
LIES, newly dedicated to imaginative cover art, is making a late year run of it. Teen Romance has Wolfers in highly focused form, reconciling his analog futurism with the pummeling repetition necessary to make people move. The title track is the best example. A funky bass line, smeared vhs tracking synths, and tom heavy beat function as one.
We Play House
Cool, loosely new beat themed ep from the WPH crew. San Soda appears under the Nick Berlin alias and provides a jacking rudimentary track with a vocal requesting psychedelics. Akil Brikha is The Assyrian Lover - the supremely title Ninevah at Night is a beautiful, soundtrack influenced piece with crunchy Linn snare. Red D is Max Erotic, and the martial swing of his "I Only Wanna" is the most reverent to the new beat era. Homages rarely sound this fresh.
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