Electronic / Experimental

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Beatrice Dillon - Workaround (LP)Beatrice Dillon - Workaround (LP)
Beatrice Dillon - Workaround (LP)Pan

‘Workaround’ is the lucidly playful and ambitious solo debut album by rhythm-obsessive musician and DJ, Beatrice Dillon for PAN. It combines her love of UK club music’s syncopated suss and Afro-Caribbean influences with a gamely experimental approach to modern composition and stylistic fusion, using inventive sampling and luminous mixing techniques adapted from modern pop to express fresh ideas about groove-driven music and perpetuate its form with timeless, future-proofed clarity.

Recorded over 2017-19 between studios in London, Berlin and New York, ‘Workaround’ renders a hypnotic series of polymetric permutations at a fixed 150bpm tempo. Mixing meticulous FM synthesis and harmonics with crisply edited acoustic samples from a wide range of guests including UK Bhangra pioneer Kuljit Bhamra (tabla); Pharoah Sanders Band’s Jonny Lam (pedal steel guitar); techno innovators Laurel Halo (synth/vocal) and Batu (samples); Senegalese Griot Kadialy Kouyaté (Kora), Hemlock’s Untold and new music specialist Lucy Railton (cello); amongst others, Dillon deftly absorbs their distinct instrumental colours and melody into 14
bright and spacious computerised frameworks that suggest immersive, nuanced options for dancers, DJs and domestic play.

‘Workaround’ evolves Dillon’s notions in a coolly unfolding manner that speaks directly to the album’s literary and visual inspirations, ranging from James P. Carse’s book ‘Finite And Infinite Games’ to the abstract drawings of Tomma Abts or Jorinde Voigt as well as painter Bridget Riley’s essays on grids and colour. Operating inside this rooted but mutable theoretical wireframe, Dillon’s ideas come to life as interrelated, efficient patterns in a self-sufficient system.

With a naturally fractal-not-fractional logic, Dillon’s rhythms unfold between unresolved 5/4 tresillo patterns, complex tabla strokes and spark-jumping tics in a fluid, tactile dance of dynamic contrasts between strong/light, sudden/restrained, and bound/free made in reference to the notational instructions of choreographer Rudolf Laban. Working in and around the beat and philosophy, the album’s freehand physics contract and expand between the lissom rolls of Bhamra’s tabla in the first, to a harmonious balance of hard drum angles and swooping FM synth cadence featuring additional synth and vocal from Laurel Halo in ‘Workaround Two’, while the extruded strings of Lucy Railton create a sublime tension at the album’s palatecleansing denouement, triggering a scintillating run of technoid pieces that riff on the kind of swung physics found in Artwork’s seminal ‘Basic G’, or Rian Treanor’s disruptive flux with a singularly tight yet loose motion and infectious joy.

Crucially, the album sees Dillon focus on dub music’s pliable emptiness, rather than the moody dematerialisation of reverb and echo. The substance of her music is rematerialised in supple, concise emotional curves and soberly freed to enact its ideas in balletic plies, rugged parries and sweeping, capoeira-like floor action. Applying deeply canny insight drawn from her years of practice as sound designer, musician and hugely knowledgable/intuitive DJ, ‘Workaround’ can be heard as Dillon’s ingenious solution or key to unlocking to perceptions of stiffness, darkness or grid-locked rigidity in electronic music. And as such it speaks to an ideal of rhythm-based and experimental music ranging from the hypnotic senegalese mbalax of Mark Ernestus’ Ndagga Rhythm Force, through SND and, more currently, the hard drum torque of DJ Plead; to adroitly exert the sensation of weightlessness and freedom in the dance and personal headspace. 

Lynn Avery & Cole Pulice - Belt of Venus (CS+DL)
Lynn Avery & Cole Pulice - Belt of Venus (CS+DL)Moon Glyph
Lynn Avery and Cole Pulice return with a new album of piano, synthesizers, tenor sax, wind synths and electronics. Following their excellent previous albums (Iceblink’s "Carpet Cocoon" and Cole Pulice’s "Gloam") the duo moves into otherworldly ambience that straddles acoustic and digital spaces, evoking an uncanny world both strange and familiar. “To Live & Die In Space & Time” began with an improvised set at the 2020 Drone Not Drones festival in Minneapolis that unveiled new worlds of sonic possibilities the duo wanted to reapproach. Lynn and Cole continued exploring this palette of sounds and ideas in the months that followed, a practice that continued as they relocated across the country and settled in their now home of Oakland, California. Lynn and Cole were not initially intending to create an "album" - instead, they were just committed to a regular practice of improvising, recording, forgetting, reapproaching, alchemizing old & new ideas, and allowing material to shapeshift. Eventually, something like an album revealed itself, which Lynn and Cole honed into “To Live & Die in Space & Time.” The sounds of TL&DIS&T are elegant, transportive and vast, like being wrapped in a blanket of stars, finding warmth and comfort in the unknown spaces of transition that don't immediately reveal meaning or purpose. In other words, the constellation of sounds on TL&DIS&T approach floating in "the void" as something less than ominous, perhaps even enchanting.
Omni Gardens - Moss King (LP+DL)Omni Gardens - Moss King (LP+DL)
Omni Gardens - Moss King (LP+DL)Moon Glyph
Omni Gardens is the experimental ambient/new age project by Moon Glyph head Steve Rosborough. Recorded at home in Portland during the early days of covid, "Moss King" is relaxed home listening for difficult times. The first Omni Gardens release, “West Coast Escapism”, was expansive with a broad selection of soothing synth tones and morphing samples. In contrast, "Moss King" is a smaller, more intimate affair, full of fuzzy new age moog drifters and self-captured field recordings. The tracks bounce between minimalist twinkling synth plucks, ocean-backed synth pads and ambient pop forms. Playful, serene and healing sounds for watching your plants grow.
Omni Gardens - Moss King (CS+DL)Omni Gardens - Moss King (CS+DL)
Omni Gardens - Moss King (CS+DL)Moon Glyph
Omni Gardens is the experimental ambient/new age project by Moon Glyph head Steve Rosborough. Recorded at home in Portland during the early days of covid, "Moss King" is relaxed home listening for difficult times. The first Omni Gardens release, “West Coast Escapism”, was expansive with a broad selection of soothing synth tones and morphing samples. In contrast, "Moss King" is a smaller, more intimate affair, full of fuzzy new age moog drifters and self-captured field recordings. The tracks bounce between minimalist twinkling synth plucks, ocean-backed synth pads and ambient pop forms. Playful, serene and healing sounds for watching your plants grow.
Loris S. Sarid - Seabed-Sunbath (LP+DL)Loris S. Sarid - Seabed-Sunbath (LP+DL)
Loris S. Sarid - Seabed-Sunbath (LP+DL)Moon Glyph
Loris S. Sarid is an ambient composer and artist born in Rome but now resides in Glasgow. His previous release, "Music for Tomato Plants", was a quiet exploration of kalimba, glockenspiel and plucky synths. On his debut LP, "Seabed-Sunbath", Loris submerges into aquatic terrain with an expanded palette of virtual pianos, soft horns, kalimba, strings, synthesized voices, textural field recordings and a wide array of soothing electronic tones. On “Oats with Sarah” and “Lobster Island”, he also incorporates live performance with collaborators on cello and voice. Many try to use computers to write human sounding compositions but Loris works in the inverse, emulating computer generated songs via his personal touch. The final results are mesmerizing, peaceful, distinctive and varied. "Seabed-Sunbath" is the sound of contemporary electronics bubbling underwater, flowing between ecosystems and settling into a quiet oceanic basin.
Kelly Lee Owens - LP.8 (White Vinyl LP)Kelly Lee Owens - LP.8 (White Vinyl LP)
Kelly Lee Owens - LP.8 (White Vinyl LP)Smalltown Supersound
Born out of a series of studio sessions, LP.8 was created with no preconceptions or expectations: an unbridled exploration into the creative subconscious. After releasing her sophomore album Inner Song in the midst of the pandemic, Kelly Lee Owens was faced with the sudden realisation that her world tour could no longer go ahead. Keen to make use of this untapped creative energy, she made the spontaneous decision to go to Oslo instead. There was no overarching plan, it was simply a change of scenery and a chance for some undisturbed studio time. It just so happened that her flight from London was the last before borders were closed once again. The blank page project was underway. Arriving to snowglobe conditions and sub-zero temperatures, she began spending time in the studio with esteemed avant-noise artist Lasse Marhaug. Together, they envisioned making music somewhere in between Throbbing Gristle and Enya, artists who have had an enduring impact on Kelly’s creative being. In doing so, they paired tough, industrial sounds with ethereal Celtic mysticism, creating music that ebbs and flows between tension and release. One month later, Kelly called her label to tell them she had created something of an outlier, her ‘eighth album’. Lasse Marhaug is known for hundreds of avant-noise releases, previously working with the likes of Merzbow, Sunn O))) and Jenny Hval, for whom he produced her acclaimed albums Apocalypse, Girl, Blood Bitch and The Practice Of Love. A label mate of Kelly’s, Marhaug has recorded for Smalltown Supersound since 1997. Welsh electronic artist Kelly Lee Owens released her eponymous debut album in 2017 and followed this up with 2020’s Inner Song. She has collaborated with Björk, St. Vincent and John Cale. In April, she returns with LP.8.
Chrisman - Makila (White Vinyl LP w/ Black Splatter)Chrisman - Makila (White Vinyl LP w/ Black Splatter)
Chrisman - Makila (White Vinyl LP w/ Black Splatter)Hakuna Kulala
While Chrisman's "Ku Mwezi" ep mostly explored gqom and trap influenced Afrohouse mutations, his debut album heads in a different direction. On "Makila", Chrisman provides an experimental vision of the taraxina sound: a molasses-slow fusion of the Angolan kuduro and kizobma dance templates that dips in-and-out of fuzzy drones and syrupy gqom. On 'Angels of Kivu', he pushes the clicking skeletal rhythm into the background, allowing electrified likembé melodies to take pride of place. It sounds like Congolese legends Konono No.1 shocked into a psychedelic electronic future by way of Durban. 'Fatiliya' pushes more solidly into taraxina territory, with familiar saw synths accenting low 'n slow kicks and air blast leads. The backbone is Angolan, but Chrisman approaches his music with a full awareness of Atlanta trap and gqom, never ignoring the gut-rattling pressure of sub bass. That's never more evident than on the title track, where he constructs a haunted atmosphere of bells and drones to sit beneath staccato percussive hits and and winding drill slaps. "Makila" is challenging music that takes divergent African forms and melts them together with next level skill and sleight of hand. It's another bold step for East African electronic music that underscores the wild creativity and talent emerging from the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Sam Gendel & Antonia Cytrynowicz - LIVE A LITTLE (CS)Sam Gendel & Antonia Cytrynowicz - LIVE A LITTLE (CS)
Sam Gendel & Antonia Cytrynowicz - LIVE A LITTLE (CS)Psychic Hotline
Sam Gendel and Antonia Cytrynowicz didn’t set out to make a record – it just happened. LIVE A LITTLE, a collection of songs resulting from one late summer afternoon in Gendel’s Los Angeles home, is less an album and more a moment. The ten tracks here were recorded mostly in one sitting, fully improvised, in the order in which they appear. It was the first and last time the songs have been played – a snapshot of an idea, an artifact of inspiration, at once both a beginning and an end. At the time of recording, Cytrynowicz was only eleven years old. The younger sister of Gendel’s significant other and creative partner Marcella, Cytrynowicz is an artist in her own way. She has no formal musical training, but is the product of a creative family and is someone who makes art the way many kids do – in the purest way, simply because they are moved to. On LIVE A LITTLE, she spontaneously crafted all the melodies and lyrics on the spot as Gendel played alongside her. Cytrynowicz’s musicality is sophisticated, strange, and other-worldly, and the resulting record is experimental jazz colliding with some sort of fantasy universe. Because of that, LIVE A LITTLE is a stand-out amidst Gendel’s extensive and varied catalog. Over the years, the multi-instrumentalist has been known for his prolific musical output as both a sought-after collaborator and as a solo artist. During 2021 alone he collaborated with Vampire Weekend, Maggie Rogers, Moses Sumney, Laurie Anderson, and Mach Hommy, as well as released Notes With Attachments with Blake Mills & legendary bassist Pino Palladino. In the same year he also released the 52-track Fresh Bread, as well as the follow-up to the acclaimed Music for Saxophone & Bass Guitar with Sam Wilkes. Then Mouthfeel / Serene, AE-30, Valley Fever Original Score, and singles “Isfahan” and “Neon Blue.” LIVE A LITTLE, though, exists on its own island. For one, the majority of Gendel’s work under his own name skews instrumental, but here the playfulness of his saxophone and nylon-string guitar work alongside the twinkle of Cytrynowicz’s voice. It’s the sound of unapologetic imagination running amok – and really, more than anything, the sound of having fun. Cytrynowicz is the ideal collaborator for Gendel, who throughout his career has remained largely unconcerned with the pageantry and presentation of the music business, instead focused solely on the music-making itself. Here, he found the purest sort of writing partner – he admires Cytrynowicz’ “supreme openness,” explaining: “Whatever is happening, she’s there with you. We really meet right where we are. She’s all ears, I’m all ears. I don’t even know how to explain what it is. It just works out somehow.” Gendel remembers first being impressed by her musicality one day while they were gathered in the backyard at her family’s home; she improvised a strange and fully-formed little composition. The melody struck Gendel - he pulled out his iPhone and had her sing into it, then later orchestrated an ornate, fully fleshed out world around the voice memo. It came easily and simply. The subsequent LIVE A LITTLE session unfolded naturally, too – no discussion, no plan, no ambition – just “let it rip.” They started when it felt right and ended when it felt finished, once the flow of ideas dissipated. Then they put it away without discussion and moved on to the next activity. For a week afterward, Gendel tinkered with the live recording, adding a part or three on top of the initial session, sculpting it into its final product; a moment of raw creativity condensed into a polished little stone. Then he brought it back to Cytrynowicz, who hadn’t heard it since that summer afternoon, and was floored by hearing what they had created. LIVE A LITTLE is a series of “what ifs” cascading into one another, off-kilter and experimental, a kaleidoscope of spontaneity and imagination. It’s a sweet distillation of the musical present, of daring to follow through on an impulse – what happens when a project is helmed by someone who doesn’t have time for second thoughts or self-doubt. “That’s why she and I can make music I think, because I don’t think I ever deviated from that approach - or at least, I hope I didn’t,” Gendel says. “I really think that’s the best way that works for me musically – that ‘no mind’ sort of thing.” And here they both decisively follow that intuition, chronicling the way an idea blossoms and moves through you. The moment is the thing, and LIVE A LITTLE just happens to capture it.
Mort Garson - Mother Earth's Plantasia (CS)
Mort Garson - Mother Earth's Plantasia (CS)Sacred Bones Records

In the mid-1970s, a force of nature swept across the continental United States, cutting across all strata of race and class, rooting in our minds, our homes, our culture. It wasn’t The Exorcist, Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, or even bell-bottoms, but instead a book called The Secret Life of Plants. The work of occultist/former OSS agent Peter Tompkins and former CIA agent/dowsing enthusiast Christopher Bird, the books shot up the bestseller charts and spread like kudzu across the landscape, becoming a phenomenon. Seemingly overnight, the indoor plant business was in full bloom and photosynthetic eukaryotes of every genus were hanging off walls, lording over bookshelves, and basking on sunny window ledges. The science behind Secret Life was specious: plants can hear our prayers, they’re lie detectors, they’re telepathic, able to predict natural disasters and receive signals from distant galaxies. But that didn’t stop millions from buying and nurturing their new plants.

Perhaps the craziest claim of the book was that plants also dug music. And whether you purchased a snake plant, asparagus fern, peace lily, or what have you from Mother Earth on Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles (or bought a Simmons mattress from Sears), you also took home Plantasia, an album recorded especially for them. Subtitled “warm earth music for plants…and the people that love them,” it was full of bucolic, charming, stoner-friendly, decidedly unscientific tunes enacted on the new-fangled device called the Moog. Plants date back from the dawn of time, but apparently they loved the Moog, never mind that the synthesizer had been on the market for just a few years. Most of all, the plants loved the ditties made by composer Mort Garson.

Few characters in early electronic music can be both fearless pioneers and cheesy trend-chasers, but Garson embraced both extremes, and has been unheralded as a result. When one writer rhetorically asked: “How was Garson’s music so ubiquitous while the man remained so under the radar?” the answer was simple. Well before Brian Eno did it, Garson was making discreet music, both the man and his music as inconspicuous as a Chlorophytum comosum. Julliard-educated and active as a session player in the post-war era, Garson wrote lounge hits, scored plush arrangements for Doris Day, and garlanded weeping countrypolitan strings around Glen Campbell’s “By the Time I Get to Phoenix.” He could render the Beatles and Simon & Garfunkel alike into easy listening and also dreamed up his own ditties. “An idear” as Garson himself would drawl it out. “I live with it, I walk it, I sing it.”

But as his daughter Day Darmet recalls: “When my dad found the synthesizer, he realized he didn’t want to do pop music anymore.” Garson encountered Robert Moog and his new device at the Audio Engineering Society’s West Coast convention in 1967 and immediately began tinkering with the device. With the Moog, those idears could be transformed. “He constantly had a song he was humming,” Darmet says. “At the table he was constantly tapping.” Which is to say that Mort pulled his melodies out of thin air, just like any household plant would.
The Plantae kingdom grew to its height by 1976, from DC Comics’ mossy superhero Swamp Thing to Stevie Wonder’s own herbal meditation, Journey Through the Secret Life of Plants. Nefarious manifestations of human-plant interaction also abounded, be it the grotesque pods in Invasion of the Body Snatchers or the pothead paranoia of the US Government spraying Mexican marijuana fields with the herbicide paraquat (which led to the rise in homegrown pot by the 1980s). And then there’s the warm, leafy embrace of Plantasia itself.

“My mom had a lot of plants,” Darmet says. “She didn’t believe in organized religion, she believed the earth was the best thing in the whole world. Whatever created us was incredible.” And she also knew when her husband had a good song, shouting from another room when she heard him humming a good idear. Novel as it might seem, Plantasia is simply full of good tunes.

Garson may have given the album away to new plant and bed owners, but a decade later a new generation could hear his music in another surreptitious way. Millions of kids bought The Legend of Zelda for their Nintendo Entertainment System back in 1986 and one distinct 8-bit tune bears more than a passing resemblance to album highlight “Concerto for Philodendron and Pothos.” Garson was never properly credited for it, but he nevertheless subliminally slipped into a new generations’ head, helping kids and plants alike grow.

Hearing Plantasia in the 21st century, it seems less an ode to our photosynthesizing friends by Garson and more an homage to his wife, the one with the green thumb that made everything flower around him. “My dad would be totally pleased to know that people are really interested in this music that had no popularity at the time,” Darmet says of Plantasia’s new renaissance. “He would be fascinated by the fact that people are finally understanding and appreciating this part of his musical career that he got no admiration for back then.” Garson seems to be everywhere again, even if he’s not really noticed, just like a houseplant.

-Andy Beta 

S A D - Studia Spiritual (LP)S A D - Studia Spiritual (LP)
S A D - Studia Spiritual (LP)12th Isle
The latest offering from 12th Isle collects a variety of recordings from Vasily Stepanov and Vlad Dobrovolski as part of their on-going S A D project (Udacha/Muscut). As part of their process, S A D sample and distort old de-magnetised tapes, constantly adding to and reworking their own sound-world. Layers of kosmiche synthesisers, off-kilter woodblock percussion and lysergic field recordings interplay with dense ambient textures in a true collage-style approach to music making. Across the nine tracks, multiple collaborations and aliases coalesce to present a thorough look at both artists approach to communicating the world around them. Drawing influence from nature and the outdoor concerts of Vladislav’s band Kurvenschreiber as well as late night free jazz shows and a similar ‘hauntological’ approach seen in Dobrovolski’s recent ‘Playbacks for Dreaming’, the pair express a unique genre-traversing attitude. More from the 12th Isle due very soon!
V.A. - Lost Transmissions From The Off-World Territories (2LP)V.A. - Lost Transmissions From The Off-World Territories (2LP)
V.A. - Lost Transmissions From The Off-World Territories (2LP)Invisible, Inc
Marking the 20th release on Invisible, Inc. is this special limited edition double-vinyl gatefold compilation featuring tracks from some of the most highly respected musicians of the last five decades. The astonishingly diverse palette of styles comes courtesy of renowned ambient innnovator Laraaji, multi-Grammy Award-winning producer and ground-breaking synthesist and sound engineer Malcolm Cecil (in his Tonto's Expanding Head Band guise), Italian 'Cosmic Disco' pioneer and DJ Daniele Baldelli, avantgarde experimentalist K. Leimer, New York electro synth-pop legend Richard Bone (all five of whom have been active since the '70s or earlier) as well as dub techno locked groove aficionados log(m), West Coast psychedelic electronics maestro Secret Circuit, Berlin-based synthesist/composer Eva Geist plus a veritable "who's who" of some of the finest producers of ambient, dub, downtempo, leftfield and experimental electronica ever collected together on a single piece of wax (or two in this case): Baikonour, Sordid Sound System, Causa, Ulysses, Epsilove, Luv*Jam, Higamos Hogamos, Randweg, Bronze Savage, Komodo Kolektif, Bal5000 and Natural Sugars. Eliciting a distinct sense of musical other-worldlyness, the title is perhaps more than just a nod to Philip K Dick's "Blade Runner" and hints at the idea that if these transmissions 'from beyond' are 'lost' they may in essence be more rooted in our distant past than in some science fiction future. Putting needle to record, ancient rhythms and hypnotic mantras merge with synthesized soundscapes and deep basslines to propel us upward from the primeval forest floor into steady orbit before engaging the hyperspace drive on a trajectory deep into the Great Mystery.
Salamanda - Ashbalkum (LP)
Salamanda - Ashbalkum (LP)Human Pitch

Human Pitch is proud to welcome Seoul-based duo Salamanda to the label for the release of their third LP ashbalkum - a portal into unseen worlds, enchanting stasis, & laughter in the face of our evolving realities. Across an effervescent 39 minute runtime, ashbalkum provides a spellbinding view into how we interact with the world around us - one where one’s own being, language, & nature itself are all rendered infinitely mutable.

Written during the surrealist landscape of summer 2021 somewhere between a sweet dream & a beautiful nightmare, ashbalkum accesses a playful tranquility that mirrors our tumultuous present - distantly intimate, static & constantly changing, moving while standing still, all the while narrowly evading the pressures of our pre-apocalyptic world looming just overhead. Through their collaborative energy steeped in joy, friendship, & experimentation, Salamanda transports us towards even further surreality - taking their sound to wholly new frontiers  while aiming to just have fun creating together & living presently.

ashbalkum’s namesake stems from symbolic & phonetic reinterpretation - specifically, a Korean phrase for the realization that what you’ve been experiencing as “reality” is actually a dream. The transmutation of this humorous existentialism into new meaning forms the core of ashbalkum - blissfully maneuvering through life, basking in irreverent states of lucidity, & attuning all frequencies to fellow dreamers within the dream.

Do dreams always reflect what we think? Is what we feel within dreams real?

Ultimately, Salamanda don’t seek to answer these questions, so much as revel in the delightful liminality of it all.

Carcascara - Carcascara II (LP)Carcascara - Carcascara II (LP)
Carcascara - Carcascara II (LP)Hegoa Records
"Applying elements of minimalism or electronic music to their compositions, Carcascara's second studio album is deeply rooted in folk, blues or jazz. Borrowing from American primitivism, this acoustic guitar trio based half way between London and Zumaia, stretch the boundaries of tradition with a fluid and developed command of the string instrument. Coming out 14 years after their self-titled debut, highly recommended for fans of Robbie Basho, Steve Reich or John Fahey."
XY0815 - Gates Need Inputs Vol. I (LP)XY0815 - Gates Need Inputs Vol. I (LP)
XY0815 - Gates Need Inputs Vol. I (LP)Brokntoys
BT50 sees the return to the fold of XY0815. Showcasing his ever-expanding palette, Gates Need Inputs Vol. I sees the Weimar based producer stepping away from the dancefloor. Brighter in mood than previous contributions, the first volume of two, presents XY0815 displaying his typical finesse and restrained flex on electronica and downtempo.
Ulla Straus - Big Room (LP)
Ulla Straus - Big Room (LP)Quiet Time
Originally released on tape in 2019, 'Big Room' helped establish Philly's Ulla Straus as one of the key figures in the post-"bblisss" wave of nu-ambient practitioners. Interchangeably glacial, gaseous and liquid, it's a rare downtempo tome that never shies away from sensuality and raw, messy emotionality. Gorgeous material: essential listening for anyone into Jake Muir, Perila, Shuttle358, Oval, Pendant or Space Afrika. 'Big Room' is a technically advanced record that never dangles its prowess in your face. Ulla's sound sculpting is remarkable, but the key to 'Big Room' is not her processing skill, it's her open-hearted emotional honesty. And if contemporary ambient and experimental music has been pocked by the Instagrammable nostalgia drip and hacky tacked-on PR narratives, 'Big Room' succeeds because it offers us a clear, demarcated alternative. Ulla doesn't need to shoehorn in a grandstanding press release or video footage of an elaborate modular setup to get our attention, the music does all the heavy lifting, drawing us in with clouded bathhouse textures and soft-focus dub rhythms, chiseled digital hiccups and levitational synthesizer loops. From the opening tones of 'Nana', with its sloshing pads and subtle glitches, to the dislocated wind chimes and blurry electronics of 'House', there's a resounding faded texture to Ulla's music that helps set a picture perfect mood. 'Big Room' is an album to lose yerself in - Ulla's able to dial in an aesthetic that goes beyond the surface level, piercing not just the production elements but the writing itself. Using relatively few elements, she's able to bridge the gaps between dub techno ('Net'), Mille Plateaux-esque processed glitch ('Past'), glowing Eno-influenced ambient ('Billow') and breathtaking arpeggio-led kosmische sounds ('Sister'), linking each track with her diaristic subtlety and careful choice of processes. In a forest of withered ambient mediocrity, 'Big Room' is a lonely, pristine evergreen - we just can't recommend it enough.
V.A. - Valley Of The Sun: Field Guide To Inner Harmony (2LP)
V.A. - Valley Of The Sun: Field Guide To Inner Harmony (2LP)Numero
Both a marketing firm and metaphysical mission, Valley of the Sun synthesized style and spirituality to produce an extensive catalog that at once defines and defies new age music. Founder Dick Sutphen worked with tireless devotion to spread a message he believed could change the world for the better. This 18-track overview of VOTS’ fertile 1977-1990 period includes music from Upper Astral, Robert Slap & Steve Powell, David Naegele, David Storrs, Steven Cooper, and Gloria Thomas, a 24-page booklet with extensive liner notes, J-card scans, and a hint of Sedona sand. Subliminal hypnosis likely.
Arthur Russell - Calling Out Of Context (2LP)
Arthur Russell - Calling Out Of Context (2LP)Rough Trade
The compilation that started the renaissance. In 2002 Audika Records entered into an exclusive licensing agreement with the estate of Arthur Russell to compile and issue previously unreleased and out of print material from Arthur’s vast archive. This first album Calling Out Of Context, features 12 previously unreleased tracks of Buddhist Bubblegum Alt Disco Pop recorded during Arthur’s prime years 1985-90.
Vlad Dobrovolski - Playbacks For Dreaming (LP)
Vlad Dobrovolski - Playbacks For Dreaming (LP)Muscut
Vlad Dobrovolski (S A D, 12th Isle, GOST ZVUK) is 1/2 of S A D, a band previously released as on Muscut and GOST ZVUK, an upcoming band LP on 12th Isle, came up with his solo album called Playbacks For Dreaming.
Huerco S. - Plonk (CD)Huerco S. - Plonk (CD)
Huerco S. - Plonk (CD)Incienso
The first Huerco S. album in 6 years, glyding into new territory with a pool of glassy synths, padded subs and cascading arpeggios, pretty much unlike anything Brian Leeds has made under any alias. "His sound palette has broadened to absorb and refine trap’s un-smeared geometrics and drill’s taught rhythms amongst the gaseous bodies and soul-piercing ambience that has garnered such acclaim; Where those previous veins were rooted in the pre-Columbian civilizations of his native Kansas, Plonk reflects the mournful sodium glow of cities at night, street corners that light up with painful moments of clarity you wish would disappear."
Huerco S. - Plonk (2LP)Huerco S. - Plonk (2LP)
Huerco S. - Plonk (2LP)Incienso
The first Huerco S. album in 6 years, glyding into new territory with a pool of glassy synths, padded subs and cascading arpeggios, pretty much unlike anything Brian Leeds has made under any alias. "His sound palette has broadened to absorb and refine trap’s un-smeared geometrics and drill’s taught rhythms amongst the gaseous bodies and soul-piercing ambience that has garnered such acclaim; Where those previous veins were rooted in the pre-Columbian civilizations of his native Kansas, Plonk reflects the mournful sodium glow of cities at night, street corners that light up with painful moments of clarity you wish would disappear."
Eric Schumacher, Andrea Clavadetscher - Greguar, Echos Aus Dem Record-Valley (LP)Eric Schumacher, Andrea Clavadetscher - Greguar, Echos Aus Dem Record-Valley (LP)
Eric Schumacher, Andrea Clavadetscher - Greguar, Echos Aus Dem Record-Valley (LP)Tonal Oceans
Recorded in 1997 in Vienna as part of a workshop named "Greguar" which took place at the University of applied Arts in Vienna, and was produced by the Institute of contemporary Art Vienna. Official re-release!
The pale faced family on the hill & Oliver Coates - The pale faced family on the hill (LP)The pale faced family on the hill & Oliver Coates - The pale faced family on the hill (LP)
The pale faced family on the hill & Oliver Coates - The pale faced family on the hill (LP)Line Explorations
Recordings of The pale faced family on the hill took place over a week in January 2020 in a small church hall on the outskirts of London. A small number of electronic music producers decided to form a collective and make heavy ambient music for raw pleasure in the agreement that their identity be withheld. They invited Oliver Coates as a live musician to contribute cello drone which they would then add to, process, subtract from and mix with weather recordings and esoteric ways of generating sounds, including old sample packs and whatever else they had to hand. The results were mixed down to tape live without further editing or arrangement. Wishing to work under a cloak of anonymity, the process freed the producers from their other lives and released output, allowing them to enter a new group alias, to induce heady states of sound and to become a group without hierarchies.
DJ Python - Club Sentimientos Vol. 2 (12")DJ Python - Club Sentimientos Vol. 2 (12")
DJ Python - Club Sentimientos Vol. 2 (12")Incienso
DJ Python's first solo record since the release of the critically-acclaimed album Mas Amable. it's too nice to just have your thoughts float in the space of your head endlessly forever and you don't have to decide which you focus on unless you want to i got a stone to skip 6 times across the water on the river i grew up by now i like to get the heaviest rocks and the lightest ones and drop them in the river to see which sink most beautifully I have no interest in saying the right thing anymore just the true thing --- DJ Python on collaborating with UFO Parfums and Candle Object: "we all appreciate each other’s work and thought it would be nice to do something together :) both candle Object and ufo Parfums are involved in music and inspired by music. Dj Python is inspired by candles and perfumes. To light a candle spray your wrist or put on a record . Same thing yo (~,’"
Da' Enna C. - 365° (2LP+DL)Da' Enna C. - 365° (2LP+DL)
Da' Enna C. - 365° (2LP+DL)Hipnotech

Originally it came out on UpTop Entertainment in 1998 on CD

Detroit based hip hop group Da'Enna C aka Da Enna Cirkle formed in 1991 consisted of P. Gruv, Sleeepy D aka 3E, Boog Woog and DJ Dez (Andres) the group has released 6 12" EP's, 1 Maxi Cassette (1994) and 1 full length CD. 

Da' Enna C is known for being the first group to release a Dilla production the song was "Now" included on the You Can't Use My Pen EP (1994) released on the UpTop Entertainment Record Label. In 1999 the group went into hiatus, focusing more on production for other artist an entities, producing a string of beat records for Hipnotech which included releasing three Enna C songs on the Beats & Rhyme 12 inch Series and another previously unreleased song recorded in 1994 - True to Rap produced by J Dilla and DJ Dez HR-018 (2010). 

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