Beatz By The Pound
Fax Transmissions in C Major

a weekly look into the world of electronic musics...

[Narita, 2005]

Starting slowly, the opening track to Yard’s “Bloom,” “Numba,” soon gets up to a gallop, incorporating Laurie Anderson, a yawning synth bass undercurrent, and Artificial Intelligence gobules of melody thrown in for good measure. The track is kind of a mess, but it’s an endearing mess that evokes the early days of IDM well, and it certainly helps the punishing acid tracks “Bloody Mary” and “Mitten” to go down a bit easier. The highlight on this schizophrenic 12” is “Adam Johnson Haunting Neal's Yard Remix” which comes on the B-side. It’s like “Numba” in many ways, but shears off the rough edges and cuts it all down to essential elements, revealing a sleek Gap-wearing version of “Numba”’s thrift-store charm. What can I say? I’m a sell-out. Anyway, a nice entry into this M3rck offshoot label’s catalogue.

Phage and Daniel Dreier
Salt and Vinegar
[Highgrade, 2005]

Sometimes when I’m on the dancefloor I ask myself where DJ’s find these interminably funky mid-set filler tracks that serve as bridge’s to the set’s highlights. Here’s one. Composed of three minimal micro-sampled tech-house tracks that could sub in for one another in a pinch, Phage and Dreier have released one of the most successfully forgettable 12”’s that I’ve listened to in recent memory that I’ll be sure to try to ID when I’m lost in the drunken haze of another Friday night. That’s a compliment, but not necessarily a recommendation.

Blome & Grummich
Crystal Avenue / Hungry Bassline
[Sender, 2005]

I imagine whenever German techno luminaries are in the studio and they’ve settled on a hard tinged bassline they name the file “sender.” That’s because everything the label releases is a beautiful barreling piece of wax. Call it Berlin crunk, if you will. This particular joint is a successfully melodic addition to the catalogue, with Blome putting fragile icicles of synth amid a gurgling and ferocious bass on “Crystal Avenue” and what sounds like fax transmissions in C major around the titular “Hungry Bassline.”

In Flagranti feat. G Rizo
Bang Bang
[Codek, 2005]

If all this is leading up to a debut full-length, then color me psyched. When we last caught up with In Flagranti, “Melodymaker” was in high rotation and “Striking Ejaculation” was acting as a great song title/disappointing song. This time around, the boys get down to business and create something that you might like if you’re into the hot and heavy disco of the 70s, while the B-side has Halt Maul’s mix, a version that would make Jason Forrest wet his pants. The capper is the Italo-tinged version—or as Codek lets us know: a great soundtrack for a haircut video. Recommended.

Thomas Fehlmann and Apparat will hit the United States for a short tour: two dates later this month. If you live in New York (September 22nd) or Seattle (September 23rd), you’re in luck.

Steve Barnes, Marcos Cabral, and Kate Simko provided a great night of music last Friday at the weekly Bunker series. Simko’s set seemed to be hampered by a hiccupping computer, but Cabral’s DJ set amped the crowd up considerably, and Barnes capped the night off with a live set that took a bit to get going, but once it did…

Wagon Repair, one of Mathew Jonson’s going concerns, has quite a considerable fall lineup slated for release: The Missing Link makes his second and third entries into the Repair catalogue with two 12”’s entitled “Philler” (parts 1 and 2), Hdvsion’s “Sick Memory,” and the already released “Medusa Smile” from up-and-comer Konrad Black.

By: Todd Burns
Published on: 2005-09-15
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