Blog Archives

Tim Green – Headless Stride

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Acclaimed underground hitmaker Tim Green is back on Toronto’s My Favorite Robot Records serving up two more astounding club tracks that are sure to make a big impact this autumn.

Green has put out some truly anthemic and chart topping techno tracks in recent times, including a recent reworking of Paul McCartney which was a Beatport hit over the summer and his standout remix of Atelier Francesco which also sat near the top of the charts. They come on Get Physical, where he has also mixed it up recently for their official Body Language series, Get Weird and of course the highly respected Cocoon Recordings. With such an appealing sound it is no wonder Green is constantly playing the world’s finest clubs and festivals (with an upcoming show at Panorama Bar in November) and this latest offering is sure to only see his stock rise yet further with its slightly deeper and more moody overtones.

The mighty ‘Headless Stride’ is a slow burning and sensuous track that sucks you into its elastic groove. Dotted with cosmic melodies, it builds to an intense but soothing high point that will offer a great moment of emotional release in any set, thanks to its poised chords and meaningful bass.

The slightly more direct ‘Nekk It’ is busier and more full, with rubbery drums, rolling bass and shuffling hi-hats all slithering away and getting under your skin. Atmospheric and tender, it really is a masterfully well paced and balanced cut that is as spacious as it is sleek.

Few people are as on point as Green right now, and once again here he comes up with the goods for the influential My Favorite Robot label.

Tracklist:
1. Headless Stride
2. Nekk It

Kenny Glasgow – Imagine a World feat. Shanira G EP

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Now that he is working solo again, Kenny Glasgow returns with another essential new track, this time on a label with which he has a long relationship, namely My Favorite Robot Records. It comes ahead of a much anticipated solo album later in the year and is delivered with fine remixes from H.O.S.H. and Jori Hulkkonen, all in all sealing a very sweet deal.

Glasgow, of course, was one part of world-renowned dance duo Art Department but has now gone back to working solo. Before touring the world as a duo, Glasgow was a key player in his native Canadian scene as a DJ, producer and promoter who helped foment the scene. As such, he was also a close friend and musical associate of the esteemed My Favorite Robot label way back when. He in fact released his excellent solo wares on the label as far back as 2010 in the form of the ‘Final Frontier EP’, so his return is long overdue and is sure to be widely heralded by those who know.

The intoxicating lead original here is ‘Imagine A World’ featuring Shanira G and is a spine tingling emotive house track. Spaced out pads drift above slick drums and rich bass adds real depth and moodiness to the overall atmosphere. Shanira G’s vocals are dreamy and alluring and play nicely off Glasgow’s own ghostly work to make for a delightfully fresh and original sounding cut.

Jori Hulkkonen released his latest album on this label last year, and recently got the remix treatment from Kenny Glasgow amongst others, now he steps up to take on mix duties. His version is more energetic, with spritely drums and widescreen, new wave styled synths stretching in all directions. It’s a classy club cut that will take ‘floors to the next level, for sure.

The second excellent remix comes from German producer H.O.S.H., who is a mainstay on the Diynamic label and has a fresh take on tech that sees him play high profile gigs all over the world. His take on the original is playful and upright, with skipping drums, rumbling bass and intergalactic chords that make you want to move.

The original and remixes here are all truly on point and mark another fine release for this taste making label.

Tracklist:
1. Imagine A World feat Shanira G (Original Mix)
2. Imagine A World feat Shanira G (Jori Hulkkonen Remix)
3. Imagine A World feat Shanira G (H.O.S.H. Remix)

Jori Hulkkonen – Black Books Remix EP

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Having released Jori Hulkkonen’s latest and greatest album, Oh But I Am (as well as the one before that!), Canadian label My Favorite Robot Records now proudly present five fine remixes of ‘Black Books,’ a track taken from the LP.

In original form the track is a slow and wintry electronic crawler with radiant synths adding some real heat to the glassy, icy tinkles. Triumphant trumpets add an air of musical majesty and it’s a great set ender that will leave people on a clean and crisp musical high. First to remix is the accomplished Finn himself, and he turns out a great dub that has sonorous bass and big rubber kicks driving along the elegantly atmospheric synths up top.

Next comes former Art Department man and long time Toronto techno star Kenny Glasgow. Here he keeps things slow and blissed out, with percolating drums and starry synths that are superbly spine tingling and spaced out. My Favorite Robot’s eponymous in house production team then get in on the action and come up with some seriously heavyweight techno drums and high intensity synth lines that are sure to blow any dance floor wide open whenever they get dropped.

Next, Doc L Junior (a.k.a. Lunchbox) is a Norwegian DJ and producer from labels like Sex Tags Mania and Music For Freaks and his Robo Dub is a charming slow churner with cosmic arps, arresting sounds and sci fi vibes in its deep disco bones. Finally, No.19 mainstay Nitin teams up with Butr for a final great remix that is littered with loose, dusty drum & bass breaks and liquid, golden pads that take you back to a 90s jungle hey day in blissful fashion.

This is a diverse and deliciously on point remix EP that offers plenty for everyone. Out on March 18th via My Favorite Robot Records.

Tracklist:
1. Jori Hulkkonen – Black Books (Jori Hulkkonen Club Dub)
2. Jori Hulkkonen – Black Books (Kenny Glasgow Remix)
3. Jori Hulkkonen – Black Books (My Favorite Robot Remix)
4. Jori Hulkkonen – Black Books (Doc L Junior’s Robo-Dub)
5. Jori Hulkkonen – Black Books (Butr & Nitin Remix)
6. Jori Hulkkonen – Black Books (Album Version)

Jori Hulkkonen – Oh But I Am LP

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Jori Hulkkonen returns with his first solo artist album under his own name in half a decade, the delightfully idiosyncratic ‘Oh But I Am’ which sees the Finnish production heavyweight on firing form..

Jori Hulkkonen has been at the heart of the global electronic music scene for two full decades now, releasing under a variety of monikers through some of the most highly respected labels around including F Communication, Turbo and My Favorite Robot. Though he has been prolific in recent years his focus has been on a number of side projects including as Sin Cos Tan, Third Culture and Nuclear Winter Garden, now he returns with his first full Jori Hulkkonen album since 2009’s ‘Man From Earth’.

‘Oh But I Am’ is an eclectic and engaging collection of twelve songs from Jori, with influences taken from Italo disco, early 80’s pop and classic house. Written over the past few years whilst working on his band and alternative projects, the LP captures the producers love of synth heavy, pop tinged songwriting in perfect style. Opener, ‘Last Cut is the Deepest’ kicks things off with an acidic instrumental jam before launching into the etheral, balaeric workout that is ‘Waiting is All We Have’. There are a brace of wonderful house inspired cuts in the albums interior including the hypnotic, ‘Capetown People’, the delightfully deep and cosmic ‘Quick to Judge, Slow to Execute’ and the electro influenced ‘Songs of the Eastern World’. Jori’s inner 80’s pop star comes to the fore on the stunning ‘Ready Player One’ which is about as catchy as it gets whilst retaining a real depth and ‘Italian Love Affair’ is another gem that transports you back to an age of uplifting, hooky electronic melodies. The LP concludes with the superbly loungy and ethereal ‘Exotica Memoirs’, leaving the listener with Jori’s trademark otherworldly vocals echoing around in the recesses of the mind.

This latest long player from scene stalwart Jori Hulkkonen truly is a triumph, a delightful mix of soaring melodies and heartfelt vocals that weave their way through a series of rich and perfectly balance productions. Out on My Favorite Robot Records on September 28th.

Jori Hulkkonen – Oh But I Am (sampler)

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Finland’s one and only Jori Hulkkonen returns with a brand new solo artist album this summer on My Favorite Robot Records, here the label offers up a taste of what to expect with this superb 4 track vinyl sampler…

The multi talented Jori Hulkkonen has been helping shape the landscape of electronic music for 20 years nows, releasing a series of critically acclaimed albums and singles on definitive labels such as Laurent Garnier’s F Communications, Tiga’s Turbo and the ever excellent My Favorite Robot Records.

In recent years Hulkkonen has explored alternative sides to his musical canon, namely through his recordings as Sin Cos Tan, Third Culture and most recently with his avant garde work as Nuclear Winter Garden. Now he returns with his first solo LP under his own name in almost 6 years. ‘Oh But I Am’ is set to explore the more melodic and charged side of Jori’s sound with a direction that straddles home listening and club influences in perfect harmony. This four track sampler gives a clear view of the LP’s feel, opening with the wonderful slo-mo workout of ‘Black Books’ a track that marries balaeric beats, live trumpets, warm immersive synths and Jori’s ethereal vocals.

Next up we have the beautifully contructed ‘Ready Player One’ which sees Hulkkonen steer deep into 80’s soundtrack influenced territory with a recording that brings together emotive piano chords, heavily effected vocals and soaring guitars over a rolling rhythm section that could have come straight from the production hands of Trevor Horn or Martin Rushent.

Penultimate cut ‘Songs of the Eastern World’ sees the Finnish producer take things into more club orientated terrain with a synth driven 4/4 instrumental track that delivers perfectly. The sampler closes with the truly uplifting and emotional ‘Italian Love Affair’ which sees Hulkkonen’s production coloured by the 80s once again as the artists vocals weave their way through arpegiated bass, staccato drums and soaring synth lines, sterling stuff!

This is a superb selection of songs from what will surely be a highly anticipated album from Finland’s finest.

Tracklist
1. Black Books
2. Ready Player One
3. Songs of the Eastern World
4. Italian Love Affair

Nuclear Winter Garden (Jori Hulkkonen) – Nuclear Winter Garden LP

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Next up on My Favorite Robot Records is another fantastic full length project, this time from someone who has done 20 of them in 20 years, namely Jori Hulkkonen in his Nuclear Winter Garden guise.

Over the years, Finnish DJ and producer Jori, also a member of the Sin Cos Tan band, has released on F Communications, Turbo and of course My Favorite Robot Records and, since 2004, has run an outdoor, intimate party at a 14th Century museum in his hometown. Called Nuclear Winter Garden, the night finds him playing extended sets of jazz, folk, classical, avant-garde and indie sounds a world away from his usual DJ duties. It is those sets that have inspired this new album.

Says the man himself: “The idea is to find a personal edge for the output, rather than paving the way for accessibility. What’s missing from a lot of people’s music these days is the risk taking. And I like taking risks.”

The album opens with sparse atmospherics and a mix of subtle synthesised hooks and organic piano chords. A drifting voice floats in amongst it all and a contemplative mood is set from the off. ‘Some of You Might Survive’ is then a chilly ambient brew of frazzled sines that suddenly flips midway through when emotive chords and one finger synth notes arrive to lighten the mood.

‘A New Cold War’ keeps up the frosty and autumnal vibes with twinkling keys offset by rasping synths and gentle tumbling percussion. Remaining resolutely horizontal and sparse, ‘Strangest Positions’ features what sound like de-tuned synths and twanging guitars, ‘Baryonic Truth’ marries distant, sketchy drums with swirling pads and ‘Red Magic’, with its lo-fi electronics and obscured, gauzy vocals, references Jori’s pop-act inspirations Connan Mockasin and John Maus.

The last two tracks complete this evocative, enthralling and experimental journey though sound in blissfully soothing style. The influence of Jori’s outdoor party looms large throughout this album, and on it he does a fine job of painting a picture of just what one might sound like.

Watch the official video for “Strangest Positions” below. Nuclear Winter Garden LP is out on March 2nd 2015.

Tracklist
1. Quitting The Game
2. Some Of You Might Survive
3. A New Cold War
4. Strangest Positions
5. Baryonic Truth
6. Red Magic
7. If I Was Your Doctor
8. Infinite Man

Villanova – Roomba Rose EP feat. Flowers & Sea Creatures

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Young Parisian duo Villanova is the next to offer up a new EP of their original wares on My Favorite Robot Records with a feature from Canadian outfit Flowers & Sea Creatures.

Before now Villanova, who have backgrounds in jazz piano, and enjoy everything from Thelonius Monk to Larry Heard, have released their own material on My Favortie Robot Records as well as having remixed the likes of Agoria and NAOME for the Toronto imprint.

The first cut here, ‘Roomba Rose’, is an ambitious number with plenty of drama and tension throughout. Full of spraying synths, jangling melodies and muttered vocals, it’s a cinematic affair that evokes a world of mental metropolitan imagery. An instrumental mix of the same track makes a bigger deal of the metallic 80s synth patterns and seems even more imposing as a result.

Next is ‘5 O’clock in the Morning feat. Flowers and Sea Creatures’, a Montreal pair that has released on Kompost and Buzzin’ Fly and always offer up carefully crafted and hugely cultured stuff. This serene, captivating track is much the same. It starts with ambient synths, pained vocals and lots of swirling ambiance before a gentle patter of drums join the fray from down below, slowly powering the epic track along. A spooky and trippy club mix sends just as many shivers down your spine and is just as unique a proposition, but is beat driven for extra DJ usability.

Lastly, ‘AR 2’ is a broody, dark and minimal track with clicking perc, eerie female whispers and beautiful vocals that will truly stun dancefloors. It’s a fine bit of work with lots of intricate synth patterns and tripped out tones that closes out what is a stunning EP.

Tracklist
1. Roomba Rose
2. Roomba Rose (instrumental)
3. 5 O’clock in the Morning feat. Flowers and Sea Creatures
4. 5 O’clock in the Morning feat. Flowers and Sea Creatures (club mix)
5. AR 2

Sid le Rock – Burning Daylight EP

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Sid Le Rock has been a key part of the My Favorite Robot label for a while now, and following on from his fine album ‘Busted With a Bag of Bliss’ and some great remixes of it, comes this new EP. Featuring three new tracks plus various mixes it’s another standout package from both label and artist.

Canadian Sid has now released more than 6 LPs and 50 singles and is a remixer in high demand from the likes of Fairmont and Placebo as well as being someone who has collaborated with the likes of DJ Koze and Ada. His sound is an always expressive, arty and musically adept one that works wonderfully on and off the dancefloor.

The serene and supreme ‘Burning Daylight’ opens the EP with shimmering synths, dreamy whispered vocals and some beautiful vintage sounding pixelated melodies. A shorter radio edit and stripped back dub mix of the same track are also included.

‘Fade to Black’ is a more stormy and tumultuous affair with sombre chord progressions lain over deep drums as twinkling disco melodies and glowing lines shoot about like stars in a night sky. It’s a very real world Sid creates and is one that you feel right at the centre of.

Next up is ‘Butterflies’, which is a non standard arrangement of swelling synth lines, skittish claps and dark basslines. As if coming from outer space, this journeying, ambitious track really takes you on a journey through Sid’s musical mind and, importantly, never strays from a compelling groove. A stripped down version, radio edit and even more blissed out dub version also come along side the fantastic original track.

Sid Le Rock is a veritable synth and studio genius who creates dance music that is much more meaningful than most, as this latest EP proves in spades. Out on October 20th 2014.

Tracklist:
1. Burning Daylight (Original Mix)
2. Fade To Black (Original Mix)
3. Butterflies (Original Mix)
4. Butterflies (Stripped Mix)
5. Burning Daylight (Dub Mix)
6. Burning Daylight (Radio Edit)

Clarian – Wasting Away Again in Moderation EP

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You will probably recognise the name Clarian as one half of former synth pop leaning duo Footprintz. The Canadian has now stepped out on his own, and has released well-received solo EPs on Visionquest, Hot Creations and Turbo that saw him delve even deeper into a melancholic world of experimental house music.

As someone who learnt guitar and piano from a young age, Clarian’s music is very much alive and rich with real melody and feeling and that is once again the case on his debut EP for Canada’s My Favorite Robot Records.

Up first is the title track, a truly magical affair laced up with dangling harmonies, glowing percussive patterns and loopy melodies that suspend you in a huge open chamber and pleasure your soul as much as direct your feet. Musical, synth laden and beautiful tech like this doesn’t come along very often.

Next up is ‘Unrest’, another heavenly and super sensitive bit of richly melodic and vastly airy music. Hand claps, trilling keys and sweeping synths all colour an expansive deep house groove with real charm, wit and emotion.

Lastly, Clarian teams up with upcoming Miami based producer Uchi whose affinity for the dark & dreamy is on show for ‘Floating in the Wing’.It’s a sombre broken beat affair that has glowing pads backing sharp percussion and undulating drums and perfectly personifies the uplifting and intense mood of the dancefloor; a standout bit of work from these North American producers.

This EP confirms Clarian to be very much out on his own in terms of the spirituality and artistry of the music he makes. Out on November 3rd 2014.

Tracklist:
1. Clarian – Wasting Away Again in Moderation
2. Clarian – Unrest
3. Clarian & Uchi – Floating in the Wing