Neocortex is a lab project gone awry. Henneke perfectly pays tribute to the dark souls who have championed electronics, but he goes further to craft a symphony of sorts. This symphony relishes in experimentation and shows that life may have an end, but not on his watch. As the release unfolds, so does the mind behind the master as he creates life after death, a gentle monster intent only on movement. Henneke single-handedly creates and maintains the honesty of the true techno sound. Born of passion and grit, Henneke has chosen the road less travelled. His music is reminiscent of the basement floors and littered warehouses where he cut his teeth. This is a sound where a sardonic smiles pairs perfectly with the darkest of evils. A place where the sun only slightly illuminates from behind the storm clouds. With recent releases featured on such labels as Mintec Musik and LW Recordings, he is now teaming with RACECAR, a match bred from family and camaraderie. [Source]
Most people who listen to The Haxan Cloak’s second record will never hear it completely. Written into the album’s data are frequencies that can only be played on powerful equipment: deep, floor-shaking tones meant to be felt, not heard. Even through headphones, the record manipulates sound in a way that’s primally disturbing, preying on the instinct to jump at sudden noises, to mistrust silence. Excavation betrays the illusion of the album as a pristine artifact, instead embracing music as an experience contingent on its environment. The album is not a grooved disc or a folder of .mp3s. The album is a conversation between vibrating air and the brain. The Haxan Cloak engages the mechanism of fear rather than the appearance of it. Excavation isn’t quite drone in the way that Eraserhead isn’t quite horror. The goal is to look at why we’re afraid—and to see the beauty that comes out of our fear. [Source]
Chilean techno imprint Sienna Obscure are ready to unleash their eighth release and the second from label chiefs Jeaven & Bunker44 Cardiology showcases the pair’s talent for creating beautifully textured, warm and yet punishing soundscapes. Iology on the flip is equally as relentless yet with a deeper touch, tenderly asphyxiating. The label complete the release in some style by welcoming CLR artist Black Asteroid on the remix of the title track. Bryan Black’s love of the experimental, ambient and avant-garde can be heard in his remix under his Black Asteroid moniker, together with the future power techno touch of his work as MOTOR. This fusion of sound and styles is portrayed as a intergalactic musical battleground, one that only the brave shall enter. Buy the remix on Beatport here.
Lindstrøm’s second LP of 2012, Smalhans, found the Norwegian space-disco god returning to the patches of arpeggiated bliss he’s so known for, following the intriguingly maximalist Six Cups of Rebel. “Vos-sako-rv” was one of the endlessly spiralling highlights from that record; here, French Touch mindhead Fred Falke takes the tune and adds tons of sharp synths (as well as some elegiac strings), stretching the original’s running time by two minutes by fashioning something more thick and blatantly anthemic. The remix is taken from the first volume of remixes released from Smalhans; that release is out now via Smalltown Supersound. [Source]
Following a trio of acclaimed, genre-confounding 12″ drops – for his own Diagonal imprint and most recently The Death of Rave – London’s Powell reports for duty at Mute’s dance R&D department, Liberation Technologies. ‘Fizz’ picks up where the mighty ‘A Band’ left off, being an anachronistic party-starter that splits the difference between rockabilly shuffle and gear-grinding industrial stomp, spiced with aromatic no wave samples and squirts of acrid electronic noise – techno for teddy boys. ‘Wharton Tiers On Drums’ revives the jerry-built, tunnelistic groove of early Powell ace ‘The Ongoing Significance Of Steel & Flesh’, but jerks the toms harder, adding sampled shout-outs to the eponymous sticksman and inviting you to contort yourself on the dancefloor. ‘Beat’ is a return to the sparsest rhythm science, simultaneously invoking the loping hypno-rock of Can, the popper-crazed brawn of Nitzer Ebb and the sparse techstep rollage of Nico and Ed Rush circa Torque. Taken from LTECH004 – ‘Fizz’ out now on 12″ and download. [Source]
Halo may hail from the States, but Behind The Green Door operates more explicitly in a British rave tradition of rhythmic fluidity and exploration than anything she’s done to date. There’s a clear musical kinship between the music I’ve written about above (the likes of Elgato, Sensate Focus and Pearson Sound) and the bounding groove and hollow hi-hat ticks of ‘Sex Mission’ and ‘Throw’. Meanwhile ‘NOYFB’ ventures farthest from whatever imagined dancefloor you might choose to locate the EP on, and does so to tremendous effect (texturally at least it reminds me of Bee Mask’s When We Were Eating Unripe Pears album). Its fleet-footed percussion heel-toes just to either side of the track’s core pulse, while bell-like struck tones stretch out into echoing infinity, and a distant bleeping alarm runs almost imperceptibly in the background, just enough to set the senses on alert. [Source]
Seattle-based producer Jeff McIlwain’s work has long inhabited the fertile border zone between electronic pop and experimental electronic music — it’s a place that’s home to music that has both a brain and a heart, and McIlwain’s been exploring its boundaries for the best part of a decade now.
The Waiting Room is his third full-length release for Ghostly International under the moniker Lusine, and his first album since 2009′s A Certain Distance. As with all McIlwain’s work as Lusine, this is a record that’s characterized by both diversity and coherency. Its tracks traverse a variety of sonic landscapes, from the widescreen atmospherics of appropriately-titled opening track “Panoramic” through the digital soul arrangement of Electronic’s “Get the Message” and the club-friendly bounce of “First Call” to the slow-building Detroit-inflected closer “February”.
But for all The Waiting Room’s eclecticism, it’s also notable that it plays out as a coherent whole, with McIlwain’s deft production creating the sense of a single, logical journey — an album, rather than a simple collection of tracks. It also continues the excursions into vocal-led tracks that characterized A Certain Distance — exactly half of The Waiting Room’s ten tracks employ vocalists, most notably the aforementioned “Get the Message,” wherein guest vocalist and wife Sarah McIlwain makes Bernard Sumner’s words her own: “I don’t know where to begin / Living in sin,” she sings calmly, “How can you talk? / Look where you’ve been.”
As a whole, this is an album that’s both cerebral and visceral, a record that’s both rewarding of a serious headphone session and also warm and melodic enough to make listening as engaging in an emotional sense as it is in an intellectual one. Many artists flirt with these two extremities of electronic music; few tie them together as well as McIlwain does. [Source]
Experiemental dance musicians walk a fine line. On one hand, there’s a drive to push the limits of electronic invention; but then, you can’t ignore the beat. It’s a limitation to a physical, often emotional matrix. Diamond Version embody this conflict moreso than most. The duo, formed of German producers Byetone and Alva Noto, make driving, intelligent floor-fillers that are darkly ecstatic and drain the potential of this vernacular. [Source]
The Colonized EP sees Temple move away from the faster and melodic stylings of her previous work, and delivering two slabs of brutal industrialism instead. All three tracks bluster with a bullish brutality, but Temple does show moments of reflection and serenity, particularly in the title track, which Perc reworks with gravelly rhythmic mechanics and metallic textures; the digital version of the EP comes with two digital bonus tracks, one original and one further Perc remix. [Source]