June 20, 2007

From The Archives #2

From The Archive is a selection of dance related articles and reviews from the archives of Stylus Magazine.

Sami Koivikko - Salmiakki (Shitkatapult)

Todd Burns: Quite simply, tennis has become less of a game of finesse and more of overpowering menaces that demand respect less because of their innate ability to outthink the other player and more because of their ability to stifle any response. For a long time, this was the state of German techno…

Various Artists - Inflation (Mu Label)

Michael Heumann: This is, in short, a remix album where the source material is inaudible and the artists must use these inaudible sounds to create audible music.

Monobox - Molecule (Logistic Records)

Todd Burns: The true highlight of the album comes with “The Diamond Age,” which oddly enough sounds much more like early Autechre or Posthuman than any other obvious antecedents to Robert Hood’s brand of minimal techno.

On Second Thought: Thomas Brinkmann’s Studio 1 – Variationen / Concept 1:96:VR (Profan / M_nus)

Todd Hutlock: In the liner notes to the release, Brinkmann explains his system (which one can assume he used on both releases) in detail: “I used a self-made turntable with 30 kilo plate, and two SME 309 Tone Arms utilizing both Ortofon and Van den Hul moving-coil pickups. The interventions with the actual vinyl are few: I slowed down the speed of the record and used the left pickup (arm) for the left channel, and the right pickup (arm) for the right channel. It’s possible to hear a melodic displacement between the channels. With a little intervention and displacement of elements, the Concepts are sounding different. The same information they had before, but two times present. Like the idea of cloning and twins: still Richie’s DNA with a little mutation. A different groove.”

On Second Thought: Pete Namlook and Dandy Jack - Silent Music (Fax)

Dane Schultz: Silent Music could be seen as a stylistic pastiche of the entire FAX catalogue.

November 3, 2006

Sami Koivikko - Pääjääsä

Armed with some nice electro basslines and more umlauts than you can shake a stick at, Finnish producer Sami Koivikko’s debut on Spectral Sound follows the tech-house template laid out by his Shitkatapult and Festplatten releases. The title track rolls out with some nice modulated riffs and a slightly discofied undercurrent that create a groove somewhere between playful and menacing, Italo and German. On the flip, “Dore” leaves things a bit more spacious and adds some nice effects for something a bit more edgy, while “Pientare” is a bit more traditionally minimal with a repeated analog riff and a recurring hum turning the lights down a bit before Koivikko adds the popping snare drum loop and some atmospheric pads. The hybrid works, and this sort of multilayered, style-treading release is always welcome in a DJ crate, but there’s enough going on to keep home listeners interested, too. Another winner from Spectral.

Spectral Sound / SPC-41
[Todd Hutlock]

October 6, 2006

Charts: October 6 2006

Guest Chart: Steve Bug, Poker Flat

Extraproduktionen - Subgreen (Arto Mwambe Mix) [Brontosaurus]
Ian O’Brien - Totally Alright (Martin Buttrich Mix) [Virgin]
Ben Westbeech - So Good Today (Yoruba Soul Mix) [Brownswood]
Das Bierbeben - Alles Fällt (Losoul Mix) [Shitkatapult]
Stefan Goldmann - Sleepy Hollow [Innercity Visions]
Cle & Mike Vamp - Maisonette (All Mixes) [Dessous]
Gummihz - Isolate (Sebo K Mix) [Mobile]
Dan Berkson & James What - Mescalincircus [Poker Flat]
Abe Duque - When The Fever Breaks [Abe Duque Records]
Studiogemeinschaft - Employee [Treibstoff]

Todd Hutlock
Afternoon Coffee Boys - Busted Speaker Brew [Clink]
Ricardo Villalobos - Bach to Back [Playhouse]
Markus Nikolai - Bushes (Freaks In Outer Space Dub) [Perlon]
Jay Haze - Change Something (Pier Bucci Remix) [Contexterrior]
Shane Berry - Fillertet 2 (Dominik Eulberg Remix) [Trapez LTD]
Anthony Shakir - Sermon [Sublime]
Justin Martin & Sammy D - Swamp Thang (Claude VonStroke Swamp Rat Mix) [Dirtybird]
Kenny Leaven - Feeling Spicy [Traum]
Alexi Delano & Xpansul - Vegetotherapy [Plus 8]
Davidovitch - Insider [Kompakt]

Ronan Fitzgerald
Gummihz - Isolate (Sebo K Remix) [Mobilee]
Solieb - Isotropy (Lazy Fat People Remix) [Maschine]
Rekorder - 6 – [Rekorder]
Jens Bond - Rocket Queen [Highgrade]
Stefan Goldmann and Ame - Sleepy Hollow Version [Innervisions]
Argenix and Samim - Sabor EP [Tuning Spork Family Affair]
Anja Schneider - Addicted (Gummihz Mix) - [Mobilee]
Juergens - Love It [Room Recordings]
Shonky - Closer To Pluton [Resopal Red]
Kollektiv Turmstrasse - Disconnect EP [Ostwind]

Mallory O’Donnell
Lindstrom - Arp She Said [Smalltown Supersound]
Erasure - Fingers & Thumbs (Cold Summer’s Day) (Fingers In Crumbs) [Mute]
Peru - Oriental – [Red Bullet / Compost]
Tetine - A Historia De Garca [Soul Jazz]
Dexter Vs. Cosmic Force - Drum Techniek [Marguerita ]
Sneak Thief - Body Militia [Voltage Musique]
Underworld – Cowgirl [Junior Boy’s Own]

Michael F. Gill
Pinktronix – Booty Sez (Juho Kahilainen rmx) [Elettrica]
The It - Donnie (Ron Hardy mix) [DJ International]
Public Energy - Three ‘O Three [Probe Records]
Ministry - I Wanted to Tell Her [Arista]
George Clinton - Erotic City [Fox Records]
Contemporary Household – She Said (Toktok remix) [Bomzh]
XR7 – XR7 [Quality Records]
Galaxy – Dancing Tight [Island/Ensign]
Sven Weisemann – Slices [Liebe Detail]
Ginny - Can’t Be Serious [VM Records]

September 15, 2006

Fenin - Black and White


For a couple of years now, Echocord has been thee flag flyer for the vague territory between dub, minimal, and techno—something only occasionally and flirtatiously claimed by Kompakt or Shitkatapult. Compared to the label’s other stalwarts (icy) Anders Ilar and (melty) Mikkel Metal, Fenin’s records have a straight purposiveness to them. Where Anders deals in atmosphere and Mikkel writes disguised pop tunes, Fenin is a tracksmith. Unfortunately, on “Again and Again,” Fenin appears to have been smoking the same bad batch that Meteo did before producing his weirdo Peruments album, and as a result Fenin’s fine formulas have gone mong. As we all know, too much of the bad stuff will give you palpitations, or arrhythmia—go easy, kids. “Chewing Dub” is a club tune from a blunted world, but (as such) lacks any sticky parts that might attach to or gum up your imagination. “In Between” lowers the tempo and the tone with a lackluster beatscape, while “Tallyman” gets us back to house without ever seeming to find its home in a mode of being which might make it musical or interesting. Ho hum.

Echocord / echocord20
[Peter Chambers]

February 24, 2005

Polmo Polpo - Kiss Me Again and Again

Polmo Polpo returns with this one-track EP showcasing a bit more bounce than previous ambient releases Alien8 and Constellation labels. That’s because he’s taking on Dinosaur L’s “Kiss Me Again and Again.” Each element that made the original a stone-cold classic is here in some way, but there’s something about the extended format and remixed elements that make this thing even stronger the second time around. For woozy dance parties and hipsters over that whole Arthur Russell thing, this one’s a must-have.

Intr-Version / INEP 002V
[Todd Burns]

February 24, 2005

Apparat - Silizium EP

A re-recording of Apparat’s Peel Session of May 2004, Silizium sees Sascha Ring presenting the leaps made from the melodic IDM of last years’ Shapemodes EP. Which means: live instruments and voices. “Komponent”? is the keeper, sounding like a more vital version of the good track that fools you into buying the new Morr Music release each time out. “Not A Good Place”? is moody down-tempo that doesn’t quite connect as well, while both “Silizium”? and “It’s Gonna Be A Long Walk”? walk a more abstract bent, the latter being the slightly less glitched out and more approachable of the two. Bus (good), Rechzentrum (better), Telefon Tel Aviv (best), and Apparat himself close it out with remixes.

Shitkatapult / Strike 53
[Todd Burns]