June 17, 2007

The Week In Review: 2007, Week 24

DeepChord - Vantage Isle (echospace [detroit])
Genre: Techno, Dub

Todd Hutlock: Vantage Isle is perfection for anyone looking for the logical successors to the Basic Channel throne, or just looking for something mellow for those steamy late summer nights.

Ame - Balandine (Innervisions)
Genre: Techno, Progressive/Trance

Gudrun Gut - In Pieces (Monika Enterprises)
Genre: Downtempo, Minimal/Deep

Peter Chambers: If you’ve ever seen Michael Mayer do his dance behind the decks, the Burger/Voigt remix is, well…this is what the dance “sounds” like.

Audion - Noiser / Fred’s Bells (Spectral Sound)
Genre: Minimal/Tech, Techno

Nate DeYoung: Dear’s previous all-excess all-acid diet lead to the dreadful and desperate cul-de-sac of “how can I add even more?” With “Bells” and his recent string of songs, it sounds like he realized the question should’ve been “How can I make it sound like I’m adding even more?”

DJ Koze - All The Time (Philpot)
Genre: Minimal/Tech

Argy - 1985 (Liebe Detail Spezial)
Genre: Minimal/Deep, House

Motorcitysoul - Kazan (Exit Cube) (Aus Music)
Genre: Electro-House, Minimal/Deep

Peter Chambers: Classy gear for warming up cool-hearted floors.

Beatzcast #37: Crambe Repetita

Mike Powell talks to Gui Boratto

Thomas Inskeep’s bluffer’s guide to ’80s R&B

Mike Orme reviews Justice’s

Fergal O’Reilly takes on Burn Your Own Church by Black Strobe


June 12, 2007

Gudrun Gut - In Pieces

Nobody has old-school West Berliner coolsie cred like Gudrun Gut. The ex-Einstürzende Neubauten/Malaria member and current Monika label boss has finally released her debut solo album I Put A Record On, a gauzy/wonky/smoky fug of beats, breaths, and sweet nothings. It’s a treat, but it pales in comparison to this EP of remixes. In fact, for me the past while has nodded to 2007 being the “Year of the Remix EP”. Hmm. It’s a measure of how connected Gudrun is that she’s got not just one, or two, but three luminaries to remix her work. For the price of one piece of wax you get a Voigt/Burger remix, a Pole remix, and a Dntel remix.

Voigt and Burger straighten things out in inimitable Köln style, sticking a one-note piano sample from the original in between some dubby soundplanes, and then placing the vocal in the middle of the whole she-bang. It’s a dead-simple track, but punches above the weight of its elements with direct, emotive force. If you’ve ever seen Michael Mayer do his dance behind the decks (youtube it if you haven’t), this is…well, this is what the dance “sounds” like. Pole’s mix stays with the groove and feel of the original, but adds a farty bumble-bee synth note and some of that Polescape magic. But as accomplished as both of these mixes are, it’s the Dntel one that’s the heartwinner. Layering lots of found/field sounds in the background, Tamborello brings Gudrun out of the haze and into the sunshine for something like an electronically rendered Breeders tune. Tender anthems, tracks, and insect vibrations – it’s all here volks. Get it while the getting’s gut.

Monika Enterprises / MONIKA 54
[Listen]
[Peter Chambers]


June 30, 2006

James Figurine - Forgive Your Friends

James Figurine is the fictional name taken by Jimmy Tamborello (DNTEL, Postal Service) for his band Figurine, and his debut 12” on Monika offers up three remixes of tracks from his upcoming Mistake Mistake Mistake Mistake album. The remix of “Apologies” by his bandmate David Figurine isn’t too far from the type of twee electro-pop you’d hear on any of Figurine’s previous albums, although it is a bit surprising to find John Tejada’s stripped down rework following in the same vein. Led by bright, cheery analog synths, this could be the only time you’d ever call a Tejada remix “precious.” But it’s the remix of “55566688833” by Axel Willner’s The Field that really impresses, showing once again why he’s one of Kompakt’s brightest stars at the moment, finding a sound that’s somewhere between the living room and the club. Willner’s mix feels loosely shaped upon a morning commute to work; its gentle dynamic build-up mimics the rising sun and the wakening body, while the lushly static keyboards are similar to the constant ebb and flow of people, cars, and buses filling the streets.

Monika Enterprise / monika 48
[Michael F. Gill]