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Blog entries categorized under Reviews

Reviews

9 posts in this category
Subcategories from this category: Bass | Soul / Funk | Compilations | Breaks | DVD | R&B / Soul | Hard Dance | Twisted | Christmas Compilations | Urban | Christmas | Dubstep | Tech / Electro | Tech / House | Albums | Mainstream | Hip-Hop | Drum & Bass | Leftfield | Electro | Techno | Prog / Tribal / Trance | House

Inspiral Carpets - Inspiral Carpets - (Cherry Red)

Monday, 13 October 2014 Albums
A brave band indeed, to come back like the Inspirals have with a self-titled album. But any concerns they haven’t got anything to say are happily blown away by this album, which – while it might not be a return to the form of ‘Saturn 5’ and ‘Dragging Me Down’ days – still suggests the band have a lot to offer. Clint Boon’s voice is a bit darker these days and it suits him – especially when the trademark organ is in tow. There is an inner resilience to songs like ‘Spitfire’ and the strong ‘Callin...
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Burnt Friedmann with Daniel Dodd-Ellis - Cease To Matter - (Nonplace Records)

Monday, 13 October 2014 Albums
Burnt Friedman and Daniel Dodd-Ellis have previous, working together on one of Friedman’s previous albums, ‘First Night Forever’. This outing is much more of a collaboration though, taking Aldous Huxley’s ‘Brave New World’ as a starting point and working some of its text into speech above Friedman’s largely ambient but experimental productions. There is gallows humour at work here, especially in the recurring title track with its airy piano, and there are loosely improvised strands that work wel...
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Tosca - Outta Here - (!K7)

Monday, 13 October 2014 Albums
A new Tosca album is always cause for celebration, even more so on this occasion because ‘Outta Here’ represents a change in direction. Rupert Huber and Richard Dorfmeister have gone for a quicker set of songs that also add a bit of gritty American blues, especially when Earl Zinger is the vocalist – for the title track even sounds as if he’s been listening to the likes of Robbie Robertson, with a knowing wink or two to the listener. ‘Kickin’ It Down’ is even better, a really catchy offering – w...
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Kasper Bjorke - After Forever - (HFN Music)

Monday, 13 October 2014 Albums
It is something of a surprise that the music of Kasper Bjorke hasn’t had more recognition in this country. He writes excellent pop songs, but gives them an electro edge, leaving them left of centre but with some excellent electronic production. There are once again a good number of unexpected touches to ‘After Forever’, his fourth album, like the steel pans at the start of ‘Sylvia’, where CTM somehow taps into the spirit of Sade over Bjorke’s crisp production. ‘Marbled Blood’ sharpens its attack...
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Pharmakon - Bestial Burden - (Sacred Bones)

Monday, 13 October 2014 Albums
Pharmakon – Margaret Chardiet – wrote this album after an unexpected and alarming hospital visit that required internal surgery. Her deeply personal response is just as internal, harnessing the sounds of the body in a pure expression of industrial noise. ‘Bestial Burden’ is such a full on response that it is in no way easy listening, and on headphones can be completely overpowering – even in the first track, ‘’, which is essentially a series of breathing patterns. Soon though the noise is overwh...
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John Foxx - B-Movie (Ballardian Video Neuronica) - (Metamatic)

Monday, 13 October 2014 Albums
John Foxx’s second release of October complements the first, his collaboration with Steve D’Agostino. ‘Ballardian B-Movies’ is a series of audio sketches that paints vivid pictures of built-up communities and technology, with some wildly varying moods. These can change at the blink of an eye, so one minute you can be taking in the exquisite suspended sounds of ‘Exit Strategy’, then the next you’re thrown into the middle of a powerful electro disco with ‘Crash Course’. ‘The Other Side’ playfully ...
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Daedelus - The Light Brigade - (Brainfeeder)

Monday, 13 October 2014 Albums
It’s almost indecent, the speed with which Daedelus produces albums. But this one is rather different, and in terms of length at least is more like an extended EP. It also finds Daedelus – real name Alfred Darlington – taking time out for thought and contemplation, which makes sense as some of his very best music in the past has been slower. Initially ‘The Light Brigade’ was to mark the Crimean War of the 1850s, but since it was recorded an all too recent conflict has broken out in that area, so...
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Underworld - Dubnobasswithmyheadman (Deluxe Edition) - (Universal)

Monday, 13 October 2014 Albums
Twenty years ago, Underworld were making themselves known to the more general public with this, their third album. Doesn’t that make you feel old? In another way though it’s very reassuring, because Karl Hyde and Rick Smith are still right at the top of their game, thrilling their fans either with new music or with the quality of their live performances. Hyde, of course, is spreading his wings through soundtracks and collaborations with Brian Eno, but this is where it really all began, the first...
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Edwin Starr - Soul Master - (Big Break Records)

Monday, 13 October 2014 Soul / Funk
And now for a touch of class. Edwin Starr featured heavily on the dancefloors of what became known as Northern Soul and this debut album aptly begins with, ‘Agent Double O Soul’ featuring his trademark raw-edged, soulfully charged vocals. Originally released way back in 1968 on Motown’s Gordy label it also contains classic’s such as, ‘(SOS) Stop Her On Sight’ and ‘Headline News’. However as a very welcome bonus, on this re-issue, a handful of gems that didn’t appear on the initial release, such ...
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Apollonia - Tour à Tour - (Apollonia)

Monday, 13 October 2014 House
Kicking off their world tour, which is also the album’s title, Tour à Tour is a positive tour de force when it comes to forward-thinking, probing contemporary music. And what becomes quickly apparent is that while the music exists sublimely for the dancefloor, it has a real depth of sound and vision that lets you explore the vivid imaginations of the three Frenchmen off it too. In ways it sounds like three people locked in spirit, jamming together as hits of percussion, fx and vocal edits all dr...
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Harry Romero - Get Down - (Manchester Underground Music)

Monday, 13 October 2014 House
Harry Romero delivers five plus minutes of uncompromising, hard-edged funk for Manchester’s Underground Music imprint. Only the one mix available so you know it’s got to be hot. And in typically relentless Romero fashion it certainly proves the point. Powerful drums and bass provide the basis for an undulating sequence of tech stabs and evolving, twisted synth lines to reach fever point by the main breakdown. It’s not about melody but sheer dancefloor pump and grind, and as such this works a tre...
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Davide Squillace - Goiânia - (Cadenza)

Monday, 13 October 2014 House
Needing little introduction this brand new collection of three tracks each sparkle with the punch and definition that we’ve come to expect from Davide Squillace. And it’s the title track which says it best as cutting string stabs are soon offset by pounding drums and an assortment of synth lines, each finding their own place in this hypnotic jigsaw of sound. ‘Blossom’ then quickly feels more intense with deeper bass tones and quick-fire percussive hits, while the excellent ‘Unit 9’ closes on dar...
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Julie Marghilano - Let It Go feat. Ilhem - (Sol Asylum)

Monday, 13 October 2014 House
And now for something rather different - Julie Marghilano was born into a musical family and for once it actually shows: this EP on her own label Sol Asylum is a truly magical, spiritual three track affair that sounds like little else and really works its way into your affections. The best of the lot is the title track, Let It Go, with its emotive vocals, scattering of percussion and punchy, rubbery drums. Soul Print is just as deep and infectious, with slightly more hurried drums, rolls of pian...
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VVAA - Alfabox 01 - (Alfa Romero Recordings)

Monday, 13 October 2014 House
The Alfa Romero label has been cruising along nicely in recent times, picking up DJ and dancer fans alike along the way. Now for the first time instead of releasing an individual artists solo EP, the imprint pulls together a range of talents for its first ever Various Artist EP. The results are fantastic and show just what a breadth of talent the label can draw on. Anthony Megaro with Sensation goes first. It’s a nice deep track with lots of reverb rich melodies and squelchy perc. Then Mazu impr...
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Marco Cassanelli - Adub EP - (eMBi Music Limited)

Monday, 13 October 2014 House
If you are into your dub techno than look no further: this new EP from long time techno expert and Italian native Marco Cassanelli is a rich, resonant offering full of mood, groove and ambiance. It features two new cuts with two remixes and is a timely release as summer makes way for the wintrier autumn season. One of the highlights is actually the remix by Daniele Casa, who flips Panorama into a spritely, groovy dub techno cut with nice beams of light, colourful synth patterns and slick percuss...
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Marcus Fix - Free To - (Epilog)

Monday, 13 October 2014 House
German DJ and producer Markus Fix has been excelling in the world of house and techno since 2007, releasing on labels like Cécile, Deep Vibes and Freebase, and now he pops up on the fledgling but already impressive Epilog label. As such, he serves up four tough and steely tracks of basement house that are seriously well produced and stuffed with feeling. It might be the last track Cable Guy that is most impressive – scurrying little drums, static crackles and a nagging lead synth line all make f...
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Kort - No Lies EP - (Tropical Velvet)

Friday, 03 October 2014 House
If you like your piano house to rattle the rafters and make your windows rattle and hum with excitement then look no further than KORT’s ‘No Lies’ EP. It serves well at the intersection of peak time and deep house, over which dons like MK and Duke Dumont reign. The strongest cut, ‘No Lies’ has a powerful diva vocal loop, scratchy old skool ‘Strings of Life’ sounding strings and a piano melody that jiggles seductively enough in the right places to catch everyone’s attention. ‘Right Thru’ is a bur...
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Mediate - Every Time - (Mediate Music)

Friday, 03 October 2014 House
Aww this just bought happy tears to my eyes . I do love supporting the home team as you know, so it puffs up my chest with hometown glory to say that Mediate are a young, Manchester-based production duo consisting of vocalist Suzy Alexander and producer, Ant Hickman. In its original version ‘Every Time’ is a rolling in the deep affair with pendulum swinging basslines and sparkling bright vocal contrast. The Youan remix has a bit more meat on its bones – fattening up the pianos, working the break...
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Coyu - Yo! - (Suara)

Friday, 03 October 2014 House
If Coyu’s peppy ‘Yo !’ doesn’t give you that ‘called out in the street’ sudden whiplash then you must be carrying your head in your hands (or else it is stuck up your bum). Coyu cheekily blends his insistent percussive rhythm patterns with a funky sub bassline and ‘yo’ shouted encouragement to make it underground and also rather ghetto. It’s relentlessly bouncy, funky and chunky, has quirky little synths and sounds and should keep the dancefloor moving whenever and wherever it is played. You get...
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Nick Curly - Trust EP - (Truesoul)

Friday, 03 October 2014 House
New on Adam Beyer’s Truesoul imprint, Nick Curly’s ‘Trust’ EP is a slick triple header featuring ‘Crossroads’ a bubbling tarmac burn-up with a hypnotic bassline driven melody highly reminiscent of Guy J's ‘Fixation’. ‘Trust’ is a back alley sneak and shuffler with lengthening percussive and effects shadows that give it a film noir edge. And finally the fun track, ‘Indigo Child’ is a percolating, wildly effervescent concoction of synths and lead lined beats. It’s a bit of techno slap and tickle. ...
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