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Monthly Archives: December 2015

Ten Recommendations – December 2015

By | Mixes, Albums & Tracks | No Comments

Kicking off a new feature – super simple recommendations of 10 tracks, albums or mixes that I’ve come across in the past month (or so). Since this is the first one, I’m going back a bit more, but most of this is still in rotation, or something I came across that I was feeling and I think people should know about.

Club Jersey – Fuck Soundcloud Vol. 2
Name your price Bandcamp release
Eight tracks of heavy-sampling and really well produced Jersey club. These aren’t hiding it – they’re bootlegs of big tracks, and they all have good energy. Super playable for DJs who have to play to the crowd, or bring them back from battering them with “new shit they aren’t ready for”. There’s a concept here about how Soundcloud is alienating the producers and DJs who brought attention and success to the platform. I’d like to round-table that topic, because I think it’s beyond something I can touch on here, but it’s an interesting one. Whatever you think – you can cop this release for free, or kick them a few bucks yourself.
File under: Jersey Club, Remixes

Footmerc – Time & Tension
Name your price Bandcamp release.
Footmerc is one of those producers who kind of made my eyes roll when I first saw his name (Wonder what genre this guy makes???), but he won me over pretty fast with his clean, well produced and sly footwork productions. He’s fairly prolific as well, but more than most footwork producers, it’s pretty much worth gripping anything he does that sees the light of day. Plenty of soul with the rushing drums, deep pads, R&B riffs, AM-radio flips and for the most part it bangs, while giving you enough off-syncopation to keep it interesting. There’s a solid “intelligent D&B” vibe here as well. My pick is “Ride the Skies”.
File under: Footwork, Soft Rock, Smooth & Rough

Headless Horesman – Headless Horseman 007
€9 EUR Digital / €18 Vinyl
Very high quality release. Blackened techno with great sound design that doesn’t limit itself too much rhythmically. Elements of rhythmic industrial and shambling, haunting atmospheres make it a really complete record. Definitely one of the techno records that’s gotten the most spins this year, and the heavier tracks (Blood Drop!) will hit really nicely on a large soundrig.
File under: Blackened Industrial Techno

Speak Onion – Ovoid Chamber
Name your price Bandcamp release
It’s official: Speak Onion is one of the best American breakcore producers. He’s methodically been honing and building on his releases and the frenetic, energetic and damn cool live sets. The layered alien sounds, building tension and a tight release, layered with dense and purposeful breaks makes this one of the best sounding breakcore tracks in recent memory. Mud Becomes Concrete builds with more subtle breaks and melody building to a dense, chattering and lilting groove. This sits in the same world as Xanopticon, Abelcain or Slutmachion, but brings it’s own sounds and retraint that give it plenty of it’s own character.
File under: Breakcore, Hardsound, NYC, Barcore

Delien – Identity Annex VOID015 / DI001
$5 Digital Bandcamp / $5 Tape
Delien is duo who represent Detroit Industrial very hard, in life and music. But this is industrial that has always accepted all off the limitless extremities that the “genre” promised, as well as the raw, street science fiction worldview of techno and electro, and cut-up noise. Judgement Call has almost an 80s industrial hop vibe, with streaks of noise funking their way through it all. Sliced ideas from a monster cyber jam coalesces into User Interface – a track that defies a single energy – it bass driven broken beat evolves into blast-beat hardcore before becoming heavy glitched out electro. Rose Covered Steel is another long jam that decimates twisted industrial breaks. Raw pieces carved out of slag metal.
File under: Industrial, Noise funk, Electro bass, Cut-ups

Various Artists – Cyberghetto – Hyperboloid
Name your price Bandcamp release
A new comp on Hyperboloid? Sure shot. One of my favorite labels for the past few years. Chock full of genre defying, weird, over the top melodic and high energy forward thinking club tracks, with a focus on artists from Russia. Braindance for the club. 813 “Sugar Tears” keeps is streak going with another sugary sweet banger. Left-of center footwork flavor is laced all through here by Homesick, Raumskaya, Slick Shoota, Seablaze, as are touches of twisted grime from WWWINGS and MUNGUUGNUM and broken rave from Fisky and Nphonix. This is pretty much the core of what I spin and like to hear at Lazercrunk – so I love to see them coming out with more and more releases.
File under: Russian, Braindance, Cyber Grime, Fast-forward club, Footwork

Kindest Cuts & Ghost Twin – You Bring the Worst Out in Me, You’re All Liars
$4 Digital Bandcamp / $6 Casette
A split release from two artists that are both doing really strong, different synth pop covers In all honestly, it was soley Kindest Cuts cover of The Screamers 122 Hours of Fear that really got me to recommend this. It’s kitchy, energetic and totally on point. There are other synth-based versions of this, but none of them are as strong as this one both vocals and rhythm track. Perfect for your high-energy halloween party. His cover of Soft Cell L.O.V.E. Feelings is incredibly well done and will suck you in, although the earnessness in such a clean style is a bit much. Ghost Twin’s take on Thrill Kill Kult’s These Remains is definitely worth a spin as well. Need to dig up these band’s originals now.
File under: Covers, Synth-pop, Screamers, Sharp Electro

Christoph de Babalon – Short Eternities
£7.99 GBP Bandcamp
It seems like Christoph de Babalon has made a resurgence in the past few years with some quality new releases that have made a few ripples after being pretty quiet between the end of the 90’s. The DHR days are basically a lifetime ago. Seeing his recent release on Giallo Disco was a nice surprise, since they work mostly in the Italian horror inspired synth world. There’s a connection, but it’s not one that has been drawn often. This record is solidly CdB – and follows more similarly to the Scylla & Charybdis release on his own Crossfade Entertainment from a couple years back. Hazey, shadowy atmospheres pervade the whole record. Shattered breakbeats that hark back to the jungle era, and get quite intense, but never overtake the spaciousness of the compositions. It’s dark, dreamy dark-core for breakcore heads.
File under: Darkcore, Breakcore, DHR, dark ambient

Partisan – Magma // Flood
Name your price Bandcamp release
Not entirely sure how I stumbled on Partisan, but this release definitely floored me on first listen. Noisy, heavy, bass weighy tracks that are labeled as hardcore grime. They definitely have some of that DNA, especially the Flood VIP. But sonically they read as something more like Cloaks, Dead Fader or Somatic Responses would release. Both tracks are great, but Magma edges it for me. He’s got a few other releases on his bandcamp that show a more varied production picture. Definitely keeping an eye on him. https://soundcloud.com/partisangrime
File under: Grime, Hardsound, Noise

Various Artists – Hebinomichi 3
Name your price Bandcamp release
Hebinomichi is a Denver-based collective of younger artists who have put out two other super strong compilations and a few miscilanious artist releases, and if you follow their soundclouds, a steady stream of free tunes. They live in the new ecosystem of rich, melodic tunes that don’t hit a single genre note, but draw from trap, r&b, pop, dubstep and (jersy/bmore) club music with tons of shimmering shining synth sounds and a strong organic flavor. The production quality is out of this world. For me, NRVM, Ste Louse and Laetho are standouts, but really not huge outliers – everything on here is strong and worth a spin, although there aren’t as many SUREFIRE standouts compared to their last two compilations. Spidering through these tracks is definitely the tip of the ice-burg for most of these artists, and it’s totally worth looking them up individually.
File under: Chill Club, Melodic bass

Bit Mummy – Artifacts II – Scolex CD [Chiptune / Punk / Rap]

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Bit Mummy is Garth (vocals, programming, guitar) and Drew (bass, backing). They’ve been doing this project in and around Pittsburgh for some years now, but they sort of fly under the radar and don’t play all that often. When they do play, they are one of my favorite acts to see in town. The songs are catchy, well composed and uptempo fusions of chip tune, gabber, blown-out punk, metal and rap. It’s a stew of things that makes alot of sense if you were a certain kind of kid in the 90s, but there really are very few bands bringing all these things together and doing it well. You’d think they reference digital hardcore more, but it’s less ATR and more it’s own thrashy form of industrial-punk that happens to use distorted drum sound and SID-chip video game melodies. Garth, the lead really sells it with his performance which is at times drugged out, masochistic and frantic. He passed me this pre-release CDR at a house show recently. A sequel to the previous Artifacts collection, it compiles a bunch of tracks, some of which they’ve been playing for a while, others fairly new, plus a couple of covers (Rudimentary Peni and GG Allin – a clear window into their influences). Songs bounce from blast beats into happy melodies, to fuzzed out vocals over a heavy bassline, then a dangerous boss level synth, and a rap breakdown. More than anything…it’s all very fun. Recommend grabbing this when it comes out on Scolex sometime next year.




Tue Dec 1st Troxum Album Release Party @ SPIRIT w/ REIGHNBEAU / Slowdanger / Good Dude Lojack

By | Shows & Events | No Comments

Pittsburgh-based cosmic synthesist, Troxum, presents an evening of fun, lights and live electronic music at Spirit + special guests to celebrate the release of his debut full-length album Gaia Lesson, out now on Telefuture. (Stream the album: telefuturenow.bandcamp.com/album/gaia-lesson)

The party starts 9 p.m., Dec. 1. The lineup:

A special guest of hypnotic shoegaze synthpop from Albuquerque, NM. On a fall tour across the US.
“alternately sinister and blissed out, beat-driven shoegaze” – IMPOSE

Synth heavy electronic music somewhere between synthwave and space rock. Known for icy landscapes, extraterrestrial origins, and psychedelic music videos.
“chaotic electronic glitches and glittering melodies” – DAZED
Copies of Gaia Lesson will be available at the party.

Pittsburgh-based future music dance duo and performance artists as seen at VIA Festival, Pittsburgh Pride, and numerous visual explorations and videos.
Walking in Circles video: youtube.com/watch?v=DxMhZNjtf50

Good Dude Lojack
Abstract brokenbeat, deep house, emotive post-rock, dub techno, and all round good dude from Pittsburgh.

Visuals, lights, and ambiance from projection-mapping fantasy maker ProjectileObjects.

Spirit is located at 242 51st St., Pittsburgh PA.

$5, 21+

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