Author Archives: zacgk
Today, French electronic music icons Justice have shared the blistering “‘D.A.N.C.E.’ x ‘Fire’ x ‘Safe and Sound'” single, taken from their forthcoming Woman Worldwide album. The album is a result of Xavier and Gaspard adapting their songs to be played on tour, in the process discovering new dimensions in their live forms. After one year of testing, performing, refining and recording them on the road, they went back to the studio in Paris to give them the polish and precision that live performance doesn’t always allow. Woman Worldwide is now available for pre-order and set for release on August 24 via Ed Banger Records / Because Music on all digital providers, along with gold embossed double CD and triple vinyl + 2CD editions.
Making a new album of re-envisioned songs inspired by their love of their live iterations is in line with Justice’s release history thus far, in which each studio album has been followed by a live recording. But, rather than repeat themselves, they have made Woman Worldwide sound like a proper studio album whereas A Cross The Universe and Access All Arenas both purposely sounded like bootlegs. The new set also fittingly acts as a celebratory anthology of the duo’s trailblazing first decade together.
Studio Barnhus Vol. 1 to be released August 31st.
Get it here: http://www.keepshellyinathens.com/introvert.html
dOP is welcomed back on Circus Company with a three track heater of an EP with ‘A Night in Sausalito’, and there is no way of taming this one. This time, the trio get slapped on wax with a 12” that is pitted straight for the dancefloor. Deetron comes through with some classy dub work on the remix.
Kicking things off with their headline track, ‘A Night in Sausalito’, the trio combine their signature and intricate synth work with a mixture of lo-fi hums and percussive flares until JAW fills the mix and takes the track away.
Rolling on A2 with ‘Ischia’, the trio drop a straight up meaty drum pattern with a haunting range of vocal licks and delicate synth grooves.
On the flipside, Deetron strips back the vocals and lays a solid housey dub that purs, intensifies and releases in all the right places.
Having recently made his inaugural outing on Brainfeeder with “Aphelion EP”, British producer Ross From Friends aka Felix Clary Weatherall returns with his debut album on Flying Lotus’ label. “Family Portrait” is characterised by a perpetual desire to experiment and Felix’s obsessive attention to detail, somehow marrying an intricately layered production style with warm, heavily saturated sonics that elevate, rather than stifle, his melodious funk. With a handful of revered 12”s under his belt via Breaker Breaker, Lobster Theremin, Distant Hawaii, Magicwire and a 10” on Molten Jets. “Family Portrait” showcases his ability to shift and evolve, moving from the world of lo-fi to the world of FlyLo, he demonstrates a versatility exemplified by the ease in which he can switch between playing shows with Little Dragon, holding down a peak-time slot in Berghain’s Panorama Bar and performing live at Maida Vale for BBC Radio 1.
The culmination of almost two years of intense studio time, working 20 hour days, and often spending months perfecting just one aspect of a track. “I tried to be careful with every single sound” he explains, “Trying new things, making a bit more of an explosive sound”. The album also finds Felix recording his own voice for the first time, with the resulting tracks acting as snapshots of his personal life while recording. “Every time I went to make music the things which would really grab me are the emotional things, and while I’m in that place I felt I could really focus on the track. That was a massive part of this album, tapping into my emotions… into my emotional instability”.
The album title – “Family Portrait” – also nods to a very specific personal aspect of the record: the influence of his parents. Dance music has always been a feature in Felix’s life, with early memories of his dad producing music on his analogue set-up, or pumping out hi-NRG tracks on the turntable, he grew up discussing, sharing and learning about music from his dad. “My dad has been hugely influential to the whole thing,” he explains. However it was with the emergence of some old family VHS tapes, and the story of how Felix’s parents came to meet, that the true significance became clear.
Having built up a sound system in the 1980’s while playing at various squat parties around London (including the then derelict Roundhouse) Felix’s dad decided he wanted to get out of the capital and see some of Europe. He got his hands on a bus and started putting word out through a network of like-minded friends and acquaintances. At the time just a friend of a friend, the trip caught the attention of Felix’s mum-to-be, who offered to document the whole thing in return for a seat, and in 1990 they loaded up the sound system and hit the road. Travelling through France, Belgium, West and East Germany (though returning through a unified one) and beyond, setting up in towns to share their passion for the sounds of hi-NRG dance, Italo disco and proto-Techno through spontaneous parties in whatever venue they could find.
As integral to the Ross From Friends identity as the recorded music is the live show, the two having always existed in tandem. Enlisting the skills of two friends, John Dunk on sax and keys, and Jed Hampson on electric guitar, to build out his arrangements into a show which works as well on a festival stage as in a club. The band head out on a headline tour in September, with appearances at Primavera Sound, Field Day and Kala Festival this summer to name a few.
“Family Portrait” is released on vinyl, CD and digitally via Brainfeeder on 27th July 2018.
“We are one hundred billion sparks. One hundred billion neurons whose firing creates feelings and ideas. One hundred billion neurons that make us all different yet connected.”
After spending a month in complete isolation at a remote cottage in Wales, Max Cooper presents ‘One Hundred Billion Sparks’, his third studio album, in which he interrogates notions of identity whilst profiling the complex mechanisms that make us all wonderfully unique.
“For me personally, the foundations of nature, in the broadest sense (including us), carry the most beauty and maddening incomprehensibility. The more something is distilled, the more its beauty is crystallised. That is why I am compelled to look for foundations as a general approach.”
His previous album ‘Emergence’ applied this reasoning outwards but for ‘One Hundred Billion Sparks’ he applied it inwards. Conceptualised during a period of intense isolation, the album searches for artistry amongst the mechanisms, emotions and constructs which yield our identity and experience.
“‘One Hundred Billion Sparks’ is my attempt to express what was there after I had removed my everyday life. No phone calls, no emails, no messages, no human contact or conversation for a month, that was the idea.What I found were the fables we live inside, our constructs, the mechanisms which create them, and the experience of parsing them.”
It is a project that can be appreciated both for its complex groundings and beautiful simplicity in equal measure. Pairing crystalline, microscopic sound with sweeping ambience and immersive textures, Max refines his signature sound across a range of tempos. Retaining the duality for which his work is now known for, extensively detailed tracks are bound together by affecting harmonies and driven forward by focused drum patterns in tracks like ‘Hope’. Whilst the sound palette is unmistakably his, the album sees him experimenting with new styles, as highlighted in the industrial swarm of ‘Reflex’, the dubby minimalism of ‘Identity’ or the post pop choppy vocals of ‘Rule 110’.
Every piece of music on the album is a score to the visual story underpinning the project. Each chapter conceived in both musical and visual form from the outset, and carried forward as collaborations with visual artists. These chapters are explained in detail on an accompanying website which will be released alongside the album. On his process, Max explains: “Nature is like art – full of structure, complexity, paradox and many other things which invoke awe, beauty, peace, confusion, frustration and feeling.That is why I involve scientific ideas in my projects; they are a rich source of aesthetic and feeling.”
As one of the leading artists exploring the intersection of music, science, art and technology, Max Cooper has sustained a reputation for providing insightful projects via sound, visuals and immersive installations. ‘One Hundred Billion Sparks’ advances that reputation, with an artistic exploration of ideas communicating the marvel of our existence.
Max Cooper will be going on tour to showcase his new album with stops at Melkweg in Amsterdam, Koko in London, Gaîté Lyrique in Paris, AB in Brussels, Funkhaus in Berlin and more.
Stream/buy Hope and pre-order One Hundred Billion Sparks here.
date: 20th September 2018
04. Rule 110
Maribou State announce their new album “Kingdoms In Colour”, released 7 September via Ninja Tune’s Counter Records imprint, their first full-length since 2015’s breakthrough debut album “Portraits”. The record features new single ‘Feel Good’ – a collaboration born of their friendship with Houston-based trio Khruangbin and a shared love of breakbeats, vintage surf riffs and a common desire to explore worldwide music cultures. “Sometimes a chance meeting plants the seed for something bigger,” say Khruangbin. “Such was the case when we met Maribou State at KOKO a couple of years ago. We are very happy to be involved in this project. And we ‘feel good’ already.”
The band continue their long standing relationship with Holly Walker who has previously vocalled fan favourites such as ‘Midas’, ‘Steal’ and ‘Tongue’. Also featured on the record is recent single ‘Turnmills’ – named after the legendary London club which closed its doors in 2008 – the release was accompanied by a sold-out ‘all-night’ DJ set at Corsica Studios raising money and awareness for the The Night Time Industries Association’s #SaveNightlife campaign to protect the UK’s most vulnerable music venues from closure.
They also announce a new headline UK tour this autumn. Returning with a 5-piece band, they play at London’s iconic Roundhouse on the 18th October. Ahead of this they will also embark on a string of European festival dates which include a headline show at Sonar By Day, Parklife Festival, Roskilde, Pukkelpop Festival and Nova Batida, having recently DJ’d after Flying Lotus at All Points East festival in London.