Friday, March 31, 2006

Extra Extra

I've got this terrible cough, and apart from making me feel like I have a live rat trapped in my throat, trying to scratch its way out, all it really does is remind me how much I want a cigarette. I then have a cigarette, what with my willpower being exceedingly low, and set off another cycle of rat-scratching. Vicious. Circle.

Anyway, thought I'd come back and write some more this evening, given that my last post consisted mainly of slapstick tales of drunkenness and ruminations on an uncertain summer to come...Some of what I'm going to post in this lil' session has, for sure, appeared on other blogs in the last couple of days. Apologies for that; I would refrain from posting 'em at all, but I've sitting on a couple of the forthcoming tracks for a while, and I want to say a few words about 'em, so....It seems appropriate, before I jump in, to express my gratitude, and direct you to, the blogging galactacos that are Skull Juice, 24 Hours and Oh My Gosh. If you're a regular here, then you're almost certainly a regular there, but if you're not may I take this opportunity to humbly suggest that you FUCKING CHECK THEM OUT.

Erol's remix of Hot Chip's 'I Was A Boy From School' is knocking around webspace; unfortunately, the hen's teeth 12" has already sold out of Phonica (before they even managed to upload the details properly onto their webshop...), so you might want to keep an eye on City 16 for one of the limited promos, or wait the ten or eleven years that will elapse before the official release. It's a fine piece of work by Alkan, with the anticipated DFA influence (it's heavily reminiscent, in some ways, of Murphy & Goldsworthy's mix of 'Far From Home') and a sound palette very much indebted to EA's Beyond The Wizard's Sleeve psych-re-edit project. A far gurn from the Bugged Out!-bating electro grenades that we usually associate with our Trashman, the whole thing's a ruddy wonderful surprise - woozy and intricate and adventurous, and probably the first thing I'll put on the stereo when I start smoking draw again next month. Now that's praise.

Now Ben, one half of the aforementioned Skull Juicers, unveiled two tracks that are fast becoming favourites of my season so far...One of them I'd already heard, the lead track on Oxia's forthcoming Speicher for Kompakt, Oxia being a Frenchman who's previously released on Intec and Goodlife. It's nice to see the series receiving a bit of life; ever since the Wighnomys' momentous 'Wombat', the princely offshoot has seemed to disappear from view - with what I would think of as traditionally Speicher fare turning up either on the main label (Axel Bartsch's wicked 'Light in the Dark', for instance) or on the now heartily established K2 imprint. I think I'm right in saying that the merciless chugger of an Orb track which appeared on Speicher 33, 'God Less America', was more of a headache than a revelation. So anyway, Kompakt Extra is most definitely back, and with the next one being helmed by none other than Superpitcher. Can't wait. To be honest, Kompakt is really warming up at the moment; 'tis the season to bring out all your best tunes, what with summer looming ever nearer (thank Christ). There's a Koze LP remix pack on its way, and new K2 fodder from Steadycam and Herve AK, not to mention the very appealing sounding 'Music to Fall Asleep' CD by Klimek. Basically, the good ship is once again ready to only question is, where's the new production by Michael Mayer (pictured way up top)? Now some people don't rate Mayer as a producer, which is just silly, 'cos he has a dancefloor finesse and an enviable knowledge of how to make things trancey and jackin' at the same time - basically, he has a distinctive production style, all of his own, which is a rare thing in this world. His LP, Touch, was a little weak, I'll admit, coming over like a John Digweed prog album from 1996, but it concealed a hidden gem in 'Neue Luthersche Fraktur' and spawned a Balearic monster in the unstoppable 'Lovefood'. Since then, we've had the Speicher 28 he did with Reinhard Voigt ('Sky Dumont') which was all peak-time rave gloriousness, the evil (in more ways than one) remix of Baxendale and a remix of Depeche Mode ('Precious'). I think it's time Michael brought out a monster Speicher bearing his own hallowed name, to kick the summer into action. In the meantime, here's the Oxia track from the forthcoming Speicher 34 - a track very much in thrall to the melodic progressions of Holden's mix of 'The Sky Was Pink' but enough going on with the tough, clicky rhythm track to transcend the imposture; this is a functional diamond that's understandably already a staple in the sets of Mayer and Lazarus. TRENDY TRANCE LIVES!!!!

Oxia - Domino // Kompakt Extra

More later, I have to go and do some stuff.
P.S. Erol's mix of Hot Chip really is something. Sniff it out.

Thursday, March 30, 2006

His Voluminousness

Shit, life is good again. I have no more work to do for ten weeks, so I'm free to use this blog to mindlessly emote about robotic music instead of bleating on insufferably about my stupid essay titles. Wooh. So yeah, if I don't fall asleep, this is going to be a long and unforgiving post. I'm talking lots of tunes, lots of self-indulgent anecdotes and a crucial joie de vivre that I've been lacking in recent weeks. Bum.

I received a fantastic head injury last week, which means throbbing techno has been low on my list of recuperative priorities...Celebrating the end of my long, embattled term, I got tremendously and childishly pissed (as you do). Around 3am, I'd already tried to make myself sick a few times (to no avail - I wanted vomit and I got astringent, whisky-dried phlegm. It happens), and realized that unless I got something solid down me I was probably going to die of self-generated nausea (for once, my innards were too volatile even to hold down a kebab). So I told myself, get your fucking shit together, get home and make a bacon sandwich. I got up to the kitchen, turned on the grill and waited for my bacon to sizzle. About twenty-five minutes passed, by which point I was just staring, with one eye closed, at the plug socket to which the fridge was connected. Snapping out of it (which seems inaccurate, 'cos I was very much still in 'it'), I rejoiced in the fact that my bacon would be done. Of course, wrenching open the door of the grill, it quickly became apparent that I'd neglected to put any bacon in there, and instead had just filled the kitchen with noxious black smoke. Error. At which point I knocked my own glasses off my head, and accidentally stomped on them. If you knew how I blind I was, you'd realize what a mistake this was. I managed to achieve just enough focus to realize that the frame was fucked, but the lenses were unsmashed and intact - the best kind of pince-nez injury. Unfortunately, God, joker that he is, seemed to have decided that not only my specs would be getting injured that night; as I walked out onto the landing I forgot that there was a staircase ahead of me; before I knew it I was falling spectacularly through the air, down the stairs, upside down, legs akimbo, all that. I was very, very drunk, and it happened very quickly, but I remember an intense moment of consciousness mid-fall, when I realized that I had a choice between smashing my face against the wall or carrying on falling and risking the breakage of my neck. Consummate survivalist that I am, I chose smashing my face against the wall. I remember hearing the sound of impact, and thinking, that's not a sound I ever want to hear again. I groaned loudly for five minutes, then passed out for ten minutes (or so I think), before managing to crawl to my bed where I awoke seven hours later, knowing vaguely that something bad had happened. I was naturally very hungover, so when I felt my head throb, I thought nothing of it. Then it all came back...The broken glasses, the spectacular tumble. I went to the mirror and took a good look - and there it is, one side of my face liberally, extensively bruised. I look like someone's smacked me repeatedly with a hot iron. But you know, it's novel, and it kinda makes the most of my cheekbones, so you know...

God. That was hugely self-indulgent. But you know, I've been busy, so I feel all my recent entries have been grimly cursory and to-the-point, and I want to make reparations. But let's get to the music. Right now I'm listening to the Metro Area album; if you don't own it, for God's sake get your act together. It's now deleted in the UK, not sure what its worldwide availability is, but Phonica have a few copies in at the mo', so if you have fourteen squid to spare, you could do a hell of a lot worse than fling 'em at that. Jesus, I spent that much on cigarettes yesterday. I can sort of remember when/why I got into Metro Area (pictured above left). Before I knew Puffin as a mate, back when he worked at Imperial Records, and I was still an unremitting indie/trip-hopper (Christ) kid unhealthily preoccupied with Wilco and Definitive Jux, I was slowly being seduced by the in sound from way out (Black Strobe, Tiefschwarz and so on - I think the last ever issue of the by then painfully erratic Jockey Slut - R.I.P. one of the finest magazines ever - was very influential in this regard). Every time I went into the shop (which was, like, every day) Puffin would recommend the latest Metro Area EP to me (#5 - 'Nerves'/'Proton Candy'). Considering how close to my heart that 12" now is, it's hard to imagine a time when that was a sound I wasn't familiar with, a time when I could put the tune on, sorta think it was alright, but not really think it was quite for me. Of course, Puffin kept popping it in my listening rack, I kept giving it a brisk spin, and then suddenly, one day, it all became clear. I bought the fucker, and I've never looked back. It's beautiful music which rewards a love, and knowledge, of music - brazenly funky, infinitely referential, insanely melodic; makes me think of summer sun, youth and vitality and that feeling at 5.30am when you're chewing your face off and you think the night is over and that you'll never think straight again but then someone puts something on the stereo which is exactly exactly exactly what you want to hear though you would never've thought of it yourself and suddenly you feel high again and everyone's grinning and jiving and you think maybe - just maybe - you might never come down (bollocks, of course). And, while we're at it, maybe also that feeling when the sun is out and its the morning-after-the-night-before but you kind of feel with it, and you've fixed yourself up a little bit and you're just strutting to the local shop to buy some food and Copella fruit juice and you're still drunk enough to think that girls are checking you out, and your cigarette tastes really fucking splendid and so on and so on...You know, it's that good. It's almost impossible to select highlights, you really need to hear it all if you haven't already, but for a quick fix, I give you what I take to be two of Darshan & Morgan's finest moments (I exclude 'Miura' 'cos it's so good and reasonably famous that if you haven't heard it you just need to lay out some cashmoney and rectify that sorry fact- just grab it off itunes or summat, at the least): 'Nerves' from #5 and the immaculate 'Caught Up'. I wasn't big on the last EP, #6 - 'Honey Circuit' was cool, but not quite of the same stature as the older stuff, not as breezily chunky(?). You know, M&D are really fine, fine producers. God bless 'em.

Metro Area - Nerves // Environ
Metro Area - Caught Up // Environ

As you may have gathered from our recent charts, both Carnage and I were more than a little disappointed with the 12" remix pack of tracks from Drowning in a Sea of Love, Nathan Fake's debut LP for Border Community. Even Fairmont's effort on 'Long Sunny' (I fucking love Fairmont) - supposedly the most club-friendly of the mixes - was nuttin' but a straightforward tech-house effort with insufficient low-end beef to rock anything but the most far-gone and careless (that's different to care-free) of dancefloors. That lack of beefiness worked a treat on 'Gazebo' - I hate Sebastian Leger's tougher version - but not here. The only re-version which tickled my fancy was the re-building of 'Charlie's House' by Apparat, who thanks to his album with Ellen Allien and a steady aggregate of forward-thinking releases on Shitkatapult, is fast becoming an A-lister in our fickle world. I think the problem with the DIASOL mixes is that all the commissioned artists were trying desperately to avoid sounding like Holden's mix of 'The Sky Was Pink', and in that very effort sorta lost their way completely...Apparat was the only one to absorb this pressure and make something new-sounding, full of lush BC pads and effects, but anchored by a dislocated bass throb to take us out of the nu-prog ghetto and have us making unusual shapes on the dancefloor (and golly, we need new shapes). TAPE applauds you, Apparat. Anyway, what of Fake's album itself? Much has been made of the boy's acknowledged debt to Boards of Canada, Godspeed you black emperor!, and My Bloody Valentine (I mean, how MBV is the LP's title??), and I for one therefore approached the album with some caution - after all, it's not going to be better than Millions Now Living Will Never Die, is it? Anyway, I found myself listening to 'Grandfathered' last night and, yes, I was rather taken with its pitched-down, chummy and melodic psychedelia...It made me think of summer; the days are getting longer, the temperature is rising, and pretty soon I'll be lying in an Oxford garden off my face on mushrooms requiring something to tickle my senses that's just a little less frenetic than the breakneck electro-house that is my daily bread and butter. Well, along with Villalobos, Lindstrom and all the other music with tripped-out sensibilities that I usually only encounter when e'd up or sober, I realize now that I will be turning to Drowning in a Sea of Love - 'cos there's summat wonderfully pastoral going on....

Nathan Fake - Grandfathered // Border Community

Just make sure there's a Holden remix on your next 12", young Nathan.

Along with the mild guarantee of high temperatures, flagrant drug abuse and a percipient lift in national mood, this summer sees the arrival of....THE MOTHERFUCKING WORLD CUP. Yes, that's right, the World Cup. Not only one of the most dramatic, tearful, gut-wrenching and enjoyable events in the civilized world, but also one of the funniest. I will also, praise God, be attending Sonar for the first time in my pathetic, uneventful life...Yes, Sonar. To anyone not going, feel free to spit at the screen in protest at my unashamed gloating, but - motherfucking SONAR! Having twice been to the mighty Benicassim festival (the first time, in 2003, I had the strongest e I've ever had and caught 2ManyDJs rinsing it - ground zero for Mr Soft & acid house; the second, last year, included the greatest after-party I've ever attended, with Mayer rupturing the floor of the beautiful, sunny outdoor club Freezer with trendy-trance goodness and, crucially, a winning smile), I've really got the bug for raving in Spain - along with untold legions of beautiful, friendly girls from across the Continent, the simple love of life which propels people through parties, whether narced or not, is incredible - and you can never look stupid dancing 'cos there's always at least thirty gays doing so with infinitely more abandon and far less shame. Shit, them Spaniards just love dancing, and what's more, they love hard, minimal electro-house. I cannot fucking wait. The Kompakt beach party, a staple of recent Sonars is, as far as I'm aware, scheduled to take place again this year. Those three words together - Kompakt beach party - sound like some magical elixir that only dreams could concoct. Well. Fingers crossed, I'll get there. People I want to see? Hawtin vs Villalobos, Mayer, Luciano, Pier Bucci, Apparat, the usual - let's hope they're all there. Fuck. I cannot wait.
Here, then, are some old classics: Mayer's most camp, hands-in-the-air, tasteful trance juggernaut; some killer Luciano/Bucci jousting; and Ricardo at his twisted, abstracted best.


Superpitcher - Happiness (M. Mayer Remix) // Kompakt Pop

Lucien-n-Luciano & Pier Bucci - Ameal // Cadenza

Ricardo Villalobos - Miami // Perlon

Ed Banger. The kids love it, that's for sure. My favourite release on the label itself remains SebastiAn's peripatetic sludgefest 'Smoking Kills'/'Dolomi', while Justice's mix of Simian ('Never Be Alone') on IDG is, you'll all admit, something of a generational anthem...'Waters of Nazareth' I liked, but found that the fact that it sounded like it had been recorded underwater kinda restrained the beast I really craved...Well Erol Alkan, who has a fairer claim than practically anyone to being the most-loved person in electrodom, has stepped up to turn 'Waters of Nazareth' into exactly that beast - keeping the distortion on the guitars, but making the rhythm more linear and giving it plenty of room to breathe, without losing that choppy, edit-heavy style that defined the original. The result is a masterful, functional remix. I can imagine Erol's a little weary of the criticism he might encounter if he decides to start producing his own material, and to be honest, I can't see how it would make his life happier - at the moment, he's noughties London's answer to Larry Levan, and who would want to risk not being that?? Anyway, it goes without saying that Alkan's rework of Franz's 'Do You Want To' was a sublime, dancefloor-decimating thang(I don't know who his engineer is, but fair play to him for facilitating such a heavy, heavy drop); next up, good ol' Justice have a go at turning FF into electro/disco gold...And how did they do? Well, I guess if you ignore the fact that it's crap, you could say it's good...Seriously, it's fine, but sometimes that whole overdriven geetar shtick that the Frenchmen have made their trademark is just a little tiresome...Oizo (with his mix of 'Nazis') and Alkan [EDIT - it was actually Justice who remixed Oizo, not the other way round, which kind of ruins my point, but as some junkie once said, oh well, whatever, nevermind] sure know how to edit those cartoonish metal-fantasies into something more percussive and persuasive, but I fear that the boys themselves do not...I know a lot of you cats LOVE Justice so I don't want to piss in the swimming pool; but come on, this mix isn't what we'd hoped for, is it? Of course, it'll still sound rude down the indie disco, but after the attendant eleven pints of Carling, what doesn't?

Justice - Waters of Nazareth (Erol Alkan's Dur Dur Durr Re-Edit) // Ed Banger

Franz Ferdinand - The Fallen (Justice Remix) // White

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Home is where the chart is...

Carnage's Current Faves

1) Pier Bucci - L'Nuit (Dominik Eulberg Remix) // Crosstown Rebels
What would happen if you took the fantastic original, toughened it up, then sprinkled a bit of Dominik's 'Potzblitz & Donnerwetter' over the end? You'd get this - pure 3am magic.

Dominik Eulberg - Potzblitz & Donnerwetter // Cocoon

2) Rekid/Radio Slave - My Bleep // Rekids
A throbbing, dubby, locomotive beast of a track from Matt Edwards.

3) 'Loleatta Holloway - Hit And Run' + 'Double Exposure - Ten Percent' (Walter Gibbons 12" Mixes] // Salsoul
Who needs the Arctic Monkeys when you've got Walter Gibbons? Been re-listening to my extended Salsoul mixes and this man hits the spot every time. He strips 'Hit & Run' right back into a louche yet bouncy tribal groove and lets Loleatta do her stuff around the subtle structure changes. 'Ten Percent', however, is much more of a hi-nrg gay disco affair, but add Gibbons' relentless, charging percussion, and you have an anthem of the highest proportions that'll leave the coldest of hearts with a smile on their faces.

Loleatta Holloway - Hit And Run (Walter Gibbons 12" Mix) // Salsoul
Double Exposure - Ten Percent (Walter Gibbons 12" Mix) // Salsoul

4) Nathan Fake - Charlie's House (Apparat Remix) // Border Community
The best track from the frankly disappointing remix 12" was this effort from Shitkatapult's Apparat, and makes the record worth buying for this alone.

5) Alexander Robotnick - Dark Side Of The Spoon (Original & Mixes) // Crème Organization
Bangkok Impact and Lindstrom & Prins Thomas both do a great job with their mixes, but it's the wonky italo original from 1982 that comes out on top at Tape Towers.

Alexander Robotnick - Dark Side Of The Spoon // Crème Organization

6) Shit Robot - Wrong Galaxy/Triumph // DFA
Marcus Lambkin offers up juicy cosmic delights in both their electro and disco stylings on this fantastic debut 12". Also, check out his killer DJ set for Beats In Space.

7) Kelley Polar - Love Songs Of The Hanging Gardens Sampler 2 // Environ
Finally 'Here In The Night' gets pressed to vinyl (and it's even been extended, woo!) but you've got other highlights of the album like the bastard son of Michael Jackson and Metro Area that is 'Ashamed Of Myself', and the fantastic closer that is 'In Time'. An album well worth buying.

8) Klaxons - Gravity's Rainbow (Nightmoves Remix) // White
It's finally been mastered and mixed (on the same mixer that mixed the first Stone Roses LP, no less) and Erol's finally been given the ok to play it, so expect this boompty indie-acid monster to be booming out of The End's speakers very soon.

9) Mystery Jets - The Boy Who Ran Away (Riton Re-rub) // 679
Why does it seem that everyone's overlooked this stomping acid-pop gem apart from me, Mr Soft, and Riton's girlfriend? Fantastic low-slung bassline, great breakdowns, vocals, arpeggios... It's got it all! Bring on the 12" re-release, I say.

Mystery Jets - The Boy Who Ran Away (Riton Re-rub) // 679

10) Hot Chip - And I Was A Boy From School (Erol Alkan Extended Rework) // EMI
Erol tries to do the DFA at their own game, stretching out the original into what starts as moody bleep-disco and slowly reveals it's blissful balearic ending.

Notable mentions should go to LPs from Hot Chip, The Knife and Ellen Allien & Apparat, and 12"s from Pinch, Todd Terje, and Johannes Heil. All you Bristol residents should get your arses in gear and get the last few tickets for Carl Craig's show on Thursday at the 250 capacity Native. If he's as good as the last time that he played here, we're in for a treat.

Closet Romantic


It's been floating about for a while, I know, but I'm still coming to terms with the wonderful knock-kneed way that Apparat fuses abstract, speaker-unsettling dubstep with typical BC lushness

2. AXEL BARTSCH - REDLIGHT // KOMPAKT Likewise, a little bit on the geriatric site for all you Barleys out there, but this is one of Kompakt's finest moments in recent months - working the crisp synth sound off Hug's 'Fluteorgie', this is militant electro-trance to keep the bug-eyed kids a-gurning and a-steppin' till the cows come home

3. STEVE BUG & STEFFAN TANZMANN - SHICK // POKER FLAT This is prolly mild sacrilege, but I've never found that Herr Tanzmann exactly flicks my bean; team him with the Colin Farrell (?) of techno, Hamburg's Steve Bug, and guess what? He'll come up with a doomy, tracky minimal cut with the kind of rising melody which sends kids skyward

4. MODESELEKTOR - SILIKON FEAT. SASHA PERERA (GRIME REMIX) // BPITCH CONTROL Like any self-respecting dog will tell ya, "Ruff!"

5. METOPE - SECOND SKIN (TEKEL REMIX) // SENDER The last time I really took notice of Tekel was his blinding re-rub of Silversurfer's 'Welcome to Berlin' which cropped up on one of the samplers for Lazarus's Rebel Futurism One, way back when; here, he uses similar brutalist tactics to turn Metope's potboiler from way back when into a hard-as, riff-driven electro-tech throbber from outer space, with gravity-defying breaks and high-pitched machine squeaks galore. Do not return to Sender. Ho ho.

6. LINDSTROM - I FEEL SPACE (TOMBA SPEZIAL MIX) // PLAYHOUSE One of 'dem Schwarz brudders and Fine also-ran(s?) Turntablerocker re-edit the 'Greensleaves' of cosmic disco. The result? A chunky, suspenseful house track whose brilliance is to dispense with the synth hook entirely. How would it sound if we hadn't heard the original Lindstrom track? Does ANYONE know the answer to this?

As familiar as your own living room, but still burning a hole in my head a good few months on.

I'm sorry, but as far as I can tell, that Justice mix of Franz Ferdinand is joyless rubbish...Seems it's left to our intrepid Matt and Pete to give Alkan's 'Do You Want To' a run for its money in the pulverizing indie-disco stales.

9. DAMON ALBARN - CLOSET ROMANTIC // EMI Pipe organ-led classic from the end credits of Trainspotting that I remembered ecstatically in the pub last night

10. EINMUSIK - SHAW // ITALIC Should've been onto this long ago (like, a year ago), but come on, I've been busy...

P.S. big, wholesome post on its way

Sunday, March 26, 2006

This is Mutant Pop

As promised, here's the mix that we'll be giving out at the Mutant Pop launch party on April 7th at Bristol's Arc Bar. Hope you enjoy!

This Is Mutant Pop
1) Art Of Tones - Lion's Gate // 20:20 Vision
2) Syclops - The Fly // Tirk
3) Lindstrom - Another Station (Todd Terje Remix) // Feedelity
4) Booka Shade - In White Rooms // Get Physical
5) Kerrier District - Let's Dance & Freak // Rephlex
6) Roy Ayers - Tarzan (Ame Remix) // Rapster
7) Wighnomy Brothers - Wombat // Kompakt Extra

8) Bodzin & Huntemann - Black Ice // International Deejay Gigolos
9) Buckley - Block Party // Made To Play
10) Kerri Chandler - Bar A Thym // Nite Grooves
11) Patrice Baumel - Mutant Pop // Trapez
12) Westbam & Nena - Oldschool, Baby (Piano Mix) // Low Spirit
13) Isolee - My Hi-Matic // Playhouse
14) The Knife - Silent Shout // V2
15) Ellen Allien & Apparat - Turbo Dreams (Pier Bucci Remix) // Bpitch Control
16) DK7 - Where's The Fun (Sten Remix) // Output

Richard Carnage - This Is Mutant Pop

Saturday, March 25, 2006

This Ain't No Smoke

The last Vayge party for a while took place last night at Bristol's Blue Mountain. Disappointingly, I only got to see the start of Alex Smoke's live set, but he seemed to have things bubbling away nicely as we ascended the stairs to man the decks, Tape tag-team style. Upstairs, meanwhile, had turned into one of those situations we all know and hate - banging hard techno played to a near empty room. Don't these DJ's have any respect for themselves or the people they're playing to? Not that there's anything wrong with the music, but there's nothing wrong with taking it down a notch and then proceeding to build it back up, getting the crowd into your vibe in the process. Which, not surprisingly, is exactly what me and Puffin did and it went down exceedingly well. Thanks to everyone who got into it and came up to us (including Tim Goldsworthy's nephew of all people!).

Here's what I can remember us playing from last night in a vaguely correct order:

D-Train - Keep On (Edit)
Todd Terje - Eurodans
Hot Chip - (Just Like We) Breakdown (DFA Remix)
Padded Cell - Unknown Zone
Tangoterje - Get It On
Kelley Polar - Here In The Night
Who Made Who - Hello, Empty Room
Heaven 17 - Penthouse & Pavement

Justice - Waters Of Nazareth
Buckley - Block Party
The Streets - Weak Become Heroes (Ashley Beedle Remix)

Poni Hoax - Budapest (Joakim Italo Dub)
Metro Area - Miura

Grafiti - What Is The Problem?
Robin S - Show Me Love
Baxendale - I Built This City (Original Mix)
Lindstrom - I Feel Space (Tiefschwarz/Turntable Rockers Remix)
Rekid - My Bleep
Underworld - Rez

Our Mutant Pop partners Mike and Gaz sturdily rocked the main room before Alex Smoke's set, and also unveiled our new flyers which'll be up on here as soon as they wake up and e-mail me the images. That may be a while yet, considering the Vayge after-party only finished 3 hours ago. Gaz was nearly asleep when I left him at 3, so I do hope that he managed to drag himself through til the end! Also on the Mutant Pop front, I'll be uploading the new mix tonight so keep checking back for your aural fix.

On the mp3 front, check Oh My Gosh for a Sebastien Leger mix of Fairmont's plink-plonk anthem, 'Gazebo', or get a taster of the mix by popping over to 24:Hours for Pier Bucci's stellar mix of Ellen Allien & Apparat.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Mountain Language

One more day, and then my horrorseason of work is over. Though I've been posting a fair bit in these last two weeks, none of my blurts have been quite as inane and digressive as I like them to be; that will all change. I even had to miss a TAPE school trip to Our Disco on Saturday, Christ. Anyway, I'm just a febrile, piss-poor essay on 'The Simulacrum of On-Stage Violence' away from the notional freedom which for 340 -or-so days a year I've become accustomed to calling my own. I need some crack to celebrate. Which reminds me...Everyone half-decent loves dubstep/techy grime at the mo', and what with funds being limited (that is, -£1621) I'm investing more and more effort (yep, that ol' cash substitute) into finding good streams and mpthreed mixes where I can, will give you some hot tips in the coming days; in the meantime, here's dubstep's answer to Ghost Town (?), the smokey, brittle, reggaetonic sure thing that started the new wave for me and most similarly backward electro 'heads'. What the hell is wrong with us, eh?

Skream - Midnight Request Line // Tempa

Cheers to Alex E for sorting us out with this; and check out Skreamism Vol. 1 out on Tempa right this minute

Monday, March 20, 2006

TAPER's Chart 20/03

Ok, so here it is, the first TAPER's Chart, our new regular 'survey' of what the people who read this blog are enjoying in their lugholes. This was compiled almost entirely arbitrarily from the many comments you left in answer to my request - thank you all for you submissions, and apologies to anything/anyone left out. Leave a comment with you favourite tunes of the moment for inclusion in the next chart. Ta.

1. Nathan Fake - Charlie's House (Apparat Remix) // Border Community
2. Dead Disco - The Treatment (Metronomy Remix) // High Voltage
3. Hysterio - Executive Memo (Sebastian Leger Remix) // Soma
4. Sweet N Candy - Unbreakable (Exercise One Remix) // Dumb Unit
5. Herve - I'm Mo Try // Dubsided
6. Terence Rixmer - Running After Time // IDG
7. Tekel - Creteil Connexion // Initial Cuts
8. Radio Slave - My Bleep // Rekid
9. Ben Parris - Loose Impediments // Foundsound
10. WhoMadeWho - Out The Door (Super Discount Remix) // Gomma

Plinky-plonky rave anthem unearthed by the fellas at Oh My Gosh:

Einmusik - Shaw // Italic

Friday, March 17, 2006

Your bank will not allow this service

Seriously. Another weekend, another bout of joke pennilessness. I have ten quid in the world to last me a week, and I'm about to squander it on four drinks that I won't enjoy. I tell you, being a student stops being funny after a while. An undergrad wouldn't stand for this. I feel close to madness. I've spent forty hours this week thinking and writing (fallaciously) about the subversion of authorial identity in post-postmodernism. Jesus. You know, it's not like I'm down a mine or anything, but still...You know you've hit the bottom rung when you're turning to your own blog for existential salvation. I feel like I'm sixteen years old. I wish I was on a large boat off the coast of Sicily, snorting ket and listening to Love with Yoshi out of Super Mario Bros, with Keith Floyd cooking dinner down below and Ronaldinho showboating on the upper deck. But I'm not, and it's time for me to leave you in peace. The moral of the story: Mr Soft does not like having serious work to do. Diddums.
Here's that rude Apparat mix of Nathan Fake.

Nathan Fake - Charlie's House (Apparat Mix) // Border Community

During Work...

I'm posting these up while sitting at my work desk so apologies if my writing's a bit shoddy. Beats working, eh? Tonight I'll be warming myself up for the Our Disco event tomorrow (see below) by venturing down to Timbuk 2 to check Puffin Jack camping up the main room in support of the Scissor Sisters' DJ Sammy Jo. I think it's quite safe to say that he'll be probably be pulling out The Bangles' classic 'Walk Like An Egyptian' along with Greg Wilson's Chaka Khan edit from his 'Credit To The Edit' series. These two songs have been staples in his 'so fun you can't stand still' sets and I guarantee everyone there'll be in for a treat. Well worth checking out, if I do say so myself.There's nothing wrong with a bit of tasteful cheese, as this song shows. Victor's 'Go On Do It' was re-released with on Morgan Geist's Environ label as part of the Unclassics series, and is easily my favourite of the bunch. Morgan stretches it out on the flipside with his 'Breakfast Club Dub', but it's all about the original with it's frankly ridiculous male/female call and response vocal. Wonky italo-pop at it's finest.

Victor - Go On Do It (1984 Original Mix) // Environ

I stumbled upon this track a month or so ago after checking out Turner's previous works and it's been on my stereo continuously since then. It's a slice of uplifting yet melancholy 'micro-goth' (well that's what the ILM bunch call it - check out the thread here) and reminds me of some of Superpitcher's best work. The 'micro-goth' tag seems to stem from the strung out, downbeat yet rousing techno sound that I've been loving over the past couple of years - Sherburne seems think 'goth-disco' fits the bill better, but how about 'emo-tech' for an absurd genre invention? It's hardly the dizzy heights that Steve Lamacq scaled when he wrote about the 'Camden Lurch' scene back when he was writing for the NME, is it? Forget the pigeonholing, just download and enjoy Carsten Jost's superb remix from back in early 2004.

Turner - After Work (Carsten Jost Dial Remix) // Ladomat 2000

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Mutant what?

Yes, yes, yes, our new night MUTANT POP is on its way.

As Carnage says below, the night is a collaboration between TAPE (Puffin Jack, Mr Soft, Richard Carnage) and Vayge refugees Mike Bull & Gareth Watkins. It promises to be special.

Bull & Watkins have been tearing up Bristol nightlife since they alighted on the scene; they have the ears, skill and tenacity to turn ultra-skeletal minimalism into dancefloor demolition, and when they're on fire - well, there's nothing like it. By way of introduction, here's a link to no less than six of their CD mixes; including tracks by the likes of Magda, Luciano, Holden, Ryan Crosson, Wighnomy Bros, Pan-Pot, Stefan Goldmann, Argy, Butane and Fraktion, these mixes number among my all-time faves - and have provided exquisite accompaniment to some of my most unsettling post-club burnin' and gurnin' sessions. I don't have the tracklistings for all of them, so if you e-mail Mike at, I'm sure he'll be happy to supply you with what he can remember.

Seriously, do check them out, they're PROPER good.


Mike Bull's Current Top Five:

1. Layo & Bushwacka - Life2Live feat. Green Velvet (LocoDice Remix) // Olmeto
2. Booka Shade - Mandarine Girl (Konrad Black/Troy Pierce Heartthrob Mix) // Get Physical
3. LocoDice - Carthago // Cocoon
4. Magda - Dr Secret Tooth // Minus
5. Isolee - Djamel et Jamshid (Villalobos Edit) // Playhouse

Put Your Booty Shorts On

It's been a while since I graced the Tape blog with my presence, but it's hardly as if I've got no excuses for my cyber-laziness. While all you guys have been out enjoying yourselves, Puffin Jack's been keeping me under lock and key until I finished the mix for our new Mutant Pop night. I've been so busy doing the mix that I've neglected to update you with the info about the night! We'll be holding the Mutant Pop parties on the first Friday of every month at the Arc Bar on Broad Street in the centre of Bristol, and we'll be kicking things off with a bang on April 7th. Mr Soft'll be coming down from Oxford for his first DJ appearance in god knows how long, and he'll be joined by myself and Puffin Jack along with our new bedfellows Mike Bull and Gareth Watkins of the Vayge night. Expect the unexpected as we traverse our way through various styles of disco, house and techno; all culminating in a minimal masterclass from Mike & Gaz. We'll be putting the mix up soon for all you international Tapers, but in the meantime you can enjoy a track that missed the final cut of the mix, Booka Shade's 'Mandarine Girl' spliced with the saccharin sweet vocals of Annie's 'Heartbeat'. I think you'll all be pleasantly surprised at how well they actually fit and I was very tempted to put it on the final version. However, it was muscled off by the best track from their 'Movements' LP, the Mandarine Girl mk II that is 'In White Rooms'. Enjoy!

Booka Shade - Mandarine Girl (Carnage's Heartbeat Booty) // CD-R

Speaking of Vayge, they'll be holding their 3rd birthday party (and sadly, their last night for a while) on Friday March 24th at Blue Mountain. Me and Puffin will be sending them off the only way we can by joining them on a bill that includes a live set from techno wunderkind of the moment Alex Smoke, and a DJ set from Slovenia's Valentino Kanzyani. Kanzyani set up the Recycled Loops label with Umek, and has released material on various labels such as Intec, Tronic and Yoshi Toshi. We'll be going head to head with the mighty Smoke, so if you're in the area, pop down and say hi!

We've spoken before about Matt Edwards and Joel Martin's Quiet Village Project, but you can really never get enough of them. All the tracks on their two releases so far have been consistently excellent, and I'm still racking my brains as to what tracks they've actually sourced their samples from. Here's the A-side from their most recent release on Brooklyn's Whatever We Want label that I started my set with when Matt Tolfrey graced our System night all the way back in January. It's a super-smooth, super-slow balearic disco track that has the power to wash over you and take all your worries away. It's got it all - the beautiful piano and ranting diva drift along before that sax comes in and lifts it to a totally new level. If you like it and want to purchase the vinyl, then it looks like you may have to spend quite a lot of cash as the ultra limited records are now totally out of stock. I picked my copy up on release from Phonica and still had to pay £9.99 + postage so maybe you're the lucky ones!

Quiet Village Project - Too High To Move // Whatever We Want

Matt Edwards
also releases his solo material under the names Rekid and Radio Slave. He's going to be releasing his new track, entitled 'My Bleep', on his own Rekids imprint, and boy does it kill. It's locomotive rhythm track propels it along, until it's joined by the throbbing, dubby bassline and the double combo of wonky and chordal (almost organ like) synths. It'll be blowing up dancefloors for a while to come upon it's release, but I'm still not sure whether it'll be coming out as Radio Slave or Rekid. Ewan Pearson's site seems to suggest Rekid, but says Radio Slave. Any ideas? Anyway, congratulations to Mr Edwards for a job well done.

This weekend will see the Tape crew (unfortunately minus Mr Soft due to his heavy work schedule) descend on London town yet again for a free party to end all free parties. Sadly, the Our Disco night's residency at Plastic People has come to an end (it was seriously disheartening to see Den Odell being informed that his spot had been muscled in on a by a fan on a message board of all things) but Saturday will see the start of a new era for Our Disco with a stellar line up at Canvas. First up you've got the Our Disco residents, then you get to witness the coming of age of fellow bloggers 20 Jazz Funk Greats. As one of the first music related blogs that I returned to time and time again, props have to go out to those guys, and I wish them all the luck in the world for what may be an intimidating prospect for them. All good so far, but the party won't have even started by then! The DFA duo of Tim Sweeney and Tim Goldsworthy will be warming up the proceedings nicely for Optimo's JD Twitch to bring things to a heady climax. And it's free! Not to mention the free glowsticks for the first 100 entrants... Rave on! Check JD Twitch on a kraut tip over at Beats In Space along with hours and hours of Sweeney's consistently excellent sets.

Also in playing London on Saturday will be our good friends Matt Waites and Pete Cage of Nightmoves. They've been creating a lot of heat over their mix of Klaxons' 'Gravity's Rainbow' which will be released in the next few months, and they'll be rocking a mish mash of house, electro, disco and techno with a bit of cheese thrown in for good measure at The Legion on Old Street. They're playing 9 til 2, so if you're heading down to Our Disco, you could do a lot worse than checking them out. This explosive dancefloor call to arms from 1972 is dedicated to the Nightmoves and 20 Jazz Funk Greats boys. 'It's just begun' indeed....

The Jimmy Castor Bunch - It's Just Begun // RCA

Hopefully we'll be awake enough to end our night by popping down to Bugged Out til its close at 7, so if you're there and see two tall, bedraggled gentlemen wondering through the door at 5am, come and say hello and tell us how completely wasted we look. It's yet another ridiculous London line up, including Erol, Miss Kittin, Midnight Mike, JoJo De Freq, Serge Santiago and Argy amongst others, so there'll be sure to be something to whet our musical whistle at that ridiculous time in the morning. If things go to plan, we should have some mix CDs to give out over the course of the night, so if you're going to be at any of these events, then play the good old game of 'spot the ginger and mullet', and we'll be happy to cross your palm with silver! A silver CD-R, that is... I'll be back tomorrow with more tracks and inane rantings for your eyes and ears.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Ket Cemetary

You may remember me bigging up fledgling, UK-based label Tiny Sticks a couple of weeks ago. The track I posted in accompaniment, Baby Ford’s remix of ‘My Aeroplane Mania’ by Turner, was, as one of our astute readers pointed out, a re-licensing of a track which came out a while ago on Ladomat. It was, however, still ace. A moot point, anyway, ‘cos this month sees Tiny Sticks bringing out a brand new EP from Alex Kruger, aka Tigerskin (pictured above). I’ve always had a soft spot for the 'skin (apart from anything else, I love his name) – and the Acid Again EP on Brique Rouge which he did with Phonique is a fond nugget in my collection, while ‘Desperate Mouselives’, out at the end of last year on Opossum, also did the business at Tape Towers. Anyway, on 10th April, Tiny Sticks release the Get in Touch EP by Tigerskin, available at all the usual outlets. They’re a UK label whose early-days release manifesto suggests they’re definitely worth supporting and this track, which you’ll find on the flip of the new EP, is classic Tigerskin – nervy but tracky rhythms, subtly boompty bassline and a brazen, industrial synth hook. And, of course, it’s not short of the odd 303 squiggle.

Tigerskin - Car Cemetary // Tiny Sticks

The news, a while back, that Konrad Black would be re-rubbing Booka Shade’s almost comically huge/good ‘Mandarine Girl’ for uncertain purpose, was met with no small amount of suspicion by ol’ me. Well, this remix of ‘Mandarine Girl’ isn’t bad at all; in actual fact, Konrad teams up with minor legend Troy Pierce to get the job done, and it’s nice, though perhaps not the sum of its parts – but, you know, I’d rather have, as this is, a track that sounds like it could be a Loose Change B-side (the sound palette is straight outta ‘Kosovo’ via Black’s mix of Hiem) and nothing like ‘Mandarine Girl’, than a track that dared to keep the Mandarine melody AND tamper with the perfect beats and programming of the original (yes, I mean you, ‘Mandarine Girl (Album Version)’), or God forbid, a Steve Angello ‘reinterpretation’. Fuck that. So let’s be happy what we’ve got…it’ll rock the floor basically, but it’s not exactly epoch-defining like its daddy. That reminds me – has anyone got hold of the (as yet) unreleased Tiefschwarz mix of Lindstrom which I’ve been hearing around? It teases and teases and shows exquisite, dancefloor piquing daring by simply riding the original track minus the melodic, money-shot hook that made that original famous. I sometimes think Tiefschwarz’s unreleased mixes constitute their best work – Kelis’s ‘Trick Me’, the Lindstrom jobby and the vocal mix of ‘Ooh La La’ by Goldfrapp, which shits on the dub despite employing more or less exactly the same elements, are all stellar.

Booka Shade - Mandarine Girl (Konrad Troy Heartthrob Remix) // Get Physical

And don't forget to leave a comment on the post below with your favourite current listening for the forthcoming TAPER's chart. Sorry this is all a bit slipshod - nothing like 10,000 words on paratext and totalitarian violence to divert a man.

Oh, and here, I've posted it before, but check out Jeremy Caulfield's remix of Memo, one of the best minimal house tracks in christendom, bub

Memo - APN Jam (Jeremy P Caulfield's Der Mountaineagle Vom Lidl Remix) // Lan Muzic


OK, this isn't exactly a proper post, in that there's nothing to download (coming very, very soon, I promise), but do read on...

Mr Soft's Current Top 10

1. GUI BORATTO - SOZINHO // K2 Seemingly named after some as-yet-unknown 12-year-old Brazilian player who's going to destroy us in the world cup, this is the better class of K2 record - sticky, tetchy minimalism that gets me right there...

2. BLACK STROBE - NAZI TRANCE FUCK OFF (HOLDEN REMIX) // CROSSTOWN REBELS Finally seeing the light of day, this is almost as good as I'd hoped for. Which is pretty fucking good.

3. AXEL BARTSCH - REDLIGHT // KOMPAKT Kompakt's rigorously assured place in the techno firmament means that some of their releases aren't getting the attention they deserved (if only they'd stop swamping us with take-it-or-leave-it K2 rekkids...)- this track is the kind of business I used to rely on Speicher for. Dangerously nice.

4. SUXUL MUSIC - FANCY (JOHN TEJADA REMIX) // SUXUL The sweetly promiscuous Johnny T rises above the one-dimensional jacking of his recent Poker Flat 12" to deliver some uncharacteristic sounds. Rollin', rollin', rollin', don't you know...

5. THE KLAXONS - GRAVITY'S RAINBOW (NIGHT MOVES REMIX) // NOIZE Ruthless, roof-busting indie/electro-house anthem, coming soon.

6. WESTEND GHETTO - GLITCHGIRLS EP // ADJUNCT Class four-tracker of 'boompty minimal' (c)Skull Juice 2006. Definitely worth a sniff.

7. M.A.N.D.Y. - SAY A LITTLE PRAYER (DUB) // GET PHYSICAL Mean dub of one of my favourite Get Phiz tracks to date; on the label's fourth anniversary (who the hell celebrates a fourth anniversary?) mix CD.

8. YO LA TENGO - I CAN HEAR THE HEART BEATING AS ONE LP// MATADOR I've always rated the 'Tengo, but had never heard this album till very recently. Foolish of me.
9. TANGOTERJE - GET IT ON // SUPREME My favourite edit off Terje's Ironkuru mix gets a pressing - breezy disco-funk, getting in through the back door...
10. DEPECHE MODE - THE DARKEST STAR (HOLDEN DUB) // XL The kind of 'ting which reminds you why we all hold James H in such ludicrously high regard. More going on here than in my entire head last night. I was tired.


I have a new scheme, which I'd like you to participate in. Every Tuesday or Wednesday, from today onwards, I'll ask you - the dear, the gentle - what you're listening to and loving at the moment, and you can, if you wish, leave a comment or three at the bottom of the post with your suggestions, and, come the weekend, I'll compile the most interesting/popular/essential selections into what I hereby declare, the weekly TAPER's Chart. Is all this a wee bit magnanimous for a lowly techno blog? Almost certainly. But come on, let's try it. Get commenting...


Tuesday, March 14, 2006

lazy blogger

Hello once again, apologies for the lack of activity on the blog, Mr Soft's punishing academic schedule has clearly set in. Therefore it's left to me, the least frequent blogger and technophobe to fill the void, and what better way to do so than with a chart....

Alexander Robotnick - Dark Side of the Spoon // Creme
the daddy
Digital Mystikz - Anti War Dub/Haunted // DMZ
dubstep, but not as we know it
Alex Bartsch - Redlight // Kompakt
neo-trance all the way
Ian Ginsing - Champagne Eiscube // Semisexual
really wonky
Radiq - Rip, Rig & Paniq // Logistic
Dead Letter Drop // White
'der klang der familie' goes breakstep
I.A. Bericochea - Sueno // Rojo
super deep
Breakage - Trance // Inperspective
junglist massive
Boxcutter - Tauhid // Planet Mu
abstract dubstep
Devendra Banhart - Cripple Crow // XL
maybe not for the dancefloor

I'm sure ol' softy will be back soon, watch this space

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

That smoke isn't funny anymore

Fuck. I've just woken up, and remembered: Thanks to the new law, in a year's time, in the UK at least, I won't be able to smoke cigarettes while I DJ. That's fucked up.

Alex Under - Las Bicicletas Para El Verano (Alex Smoke Rusty Bike Mix)// Trapez

Monday, March 06, 2006

Charts of pleasure

Mr Soft's Current Faves

Believe me - you'll be hearing a lot of this in the coming months. Can't get enough of it - makes me feel like I'm 21 again, and I'm only 22 innit....
Amazing, electro/dubstep/indefinable bass excursions from UK-based Ralph - one to watch.
Seriously serious tech-jazz soundscapes from Deutschland
Dreamy, post-Border Community techno-pop, made to accompany the winter sun
Dubby, Magda-style minimalism from...Magda!
A rip-off of 'Mandarine Girl' by the people who made 'Mandarine Girl'. Sickly sweet, impeccably programmed...a guaranteed summer smash. Enjoy it while you can.
Supreme, micro-trance Eulbergism from last summer's 'Cocoon E' compilation.
About every four months, this is ripe for rediscovery. So good....
Guilty, beefy pleasure.
J'adore le oizo hip-house func

'Hype' Chart: wondrous things, yet to come

- Not to mention his mix of Hot Chip. Can he top 'Do You Want To'?
New Border Community 12" and the '06 Holden manifesto (inc. his long-awaited, and probably underwhelming [my expectations are LUDICROUSLY high], mix of Black Strobe). Keep it comming, proggers
Due some time in the next few months, Lazarus describes this, with typical modesty, as the mix album to end all mix albums. Come on then...
At first I was charmed, but now Tim Sweeney's chatter is starting to annoy. Headed our way with a DFA mix on the flip very fucking soon...
This was announced a long, long time ago. Finally, it seems it'll see the light of day. Which is more than can be said for Villalobos.
Ok, we've heard it, and it's really good. Now I'm interested to see what the impact is...
Odds on to be rather smart
8. NEW AME 12"
Where do they go from 'Rej'?
As you may have gathered from my psychotic championing, this deserves to be big
Bit of a cop-out. But seriously - any ideas?

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Pop the glock

Last week I went back to Bristol to hook up with Puffin Jack, Ricky Carnage and other friends and associates.

It turned out Lazerboy was hosting the back room at local house night Empathy, and he, Puffin, Mike Bull and Gareth Watkins (the boys, basically) were all playing. Throw in Al Dare, myself and Carnage as punters and it looked like a techno reunion of family-album proportions….Alas, the turnout was pretty dire, and those people who had bothered to brave the bonecrushing cold to get there headed straight to the main room to hear prog/electro-house upstart Luke Dzierdek. I too popped in briefly to check him out, but I was kind of put off by his visual similarity to Finn from Hollyoaks, not to mention the turgid, electrohouse-at-its-most-bullish tuneage (though when he dropped his own ‘Over’, the Silver Planet ’05 smash that also happened to be the Tiefschwarz ’04 rip-off to end all Tiefschwarz ’04 rip-offs, it sounded ace) and the (mostly male) pondlife who had gathered to dance to him.

So, as often happens, I found myself chewing my face off contentedly to my buddies’ sounds (Note: It’s come to my attention that, when mashed, I do this weird, unintentionally cod-mystical dancing thing which kind of makes me (pictured above) look like a gay Italian version of Rafiki from the Lion King. Which is fine when there are lots of gay Italians around – London, anyone? - but not on a virtually empty dancefloor in Bristol. I need to sort that shit out). Anyway, it’s important to stress that the emptiness of the back room had nothing to do with the quality of the music, which was as high as you’d expect from our motley Brizzle crew. Bull and Watkins, who we’re collaborating with on our new night (details soon), played at their funkische minimal best (I remember some Ryan Crosson tracks sounding particularly tasty), and with their new Final Scratch setup, which kinda made the booth look like the controls on the Millenium Falcon or summat, but in a good way…Lazerboy has gone pretty italo since his big move to London (no bad thing), but he made room for ‘Just Fucking’, ‘Arquipelago’ and other assorted screamers; while our very own Puffin showcased his newfound ‘nu-jazz but not nu-jazz, unbroken beat techno’ tendency, which sounds awful on paper but excellent on a system. It’s the Compost Black Label via dubstep vibe – really tough, clattering snares and ultra-excessive bass woomph.

The best things I heard all night, though, I must confess, I heard when we went back to Puffin’s house…One was the jazz collaboration ting with Christopher Dell that Roman Flugel’s just put out on Laboratory Instinct – I was too fucked then to remember how it sounds now, but not too fucked to assure you that it is utterly brilliant, though duly wanky, of course (there’s a 12” EP out from the pair next month, definitely have a sniff). The second thing was a CDR by Puffin’s mate and former Imperial Records employee Ralph, who records as RLF (pronounced, drum roll please, as Ralph) and has put out a pair of 10”s for Rex (who’ve released stuff by Cut Copy, The Presets and The Avalanches); the most recent, Blow Your Mind and Your Speakers Will Follow, was described by one commentator as ‘a no holds barred soundclash between Andrew Weatherall and Steve Albini’. Now, I remembering listening to one of those tens a year or so ago, and loving the (loosely speaking) electro breakbeat feel (seriously Carnage, such a love is possible); but the new stuff that Puffin played me off that CD last week was nothing short of SCINTILLATING. Seriously, I know I was off my face, but none of the many florid adjectives I regularly use can come close to explaining how satisfying it sounded to me…It’s not really dubstep, but I guess the kind of music which you would think ‘dubstep’ denoted, if it didn’t denote what it does denote. You follow? Basically, it’s quality stuff; I presume he’s going to get some of the tracks waxed up in the near future – but definitely a name to watch. Really thoughtful, fun, impeccably weighted production, with enough horns and unnameable noise to counter the remorseless bass frequencies that provide the essential character. And it sounded fucking refreshing after another night on the 4x4 tiles.

As soon as I get a copy of that CD, I’ll post some tracks for you. For now, make do with some old chestnuts that found their way into Lazerboy’s set:


Audion - Just Fucking (Roman Flugel's 23 Positions in a One Night Stand Remix) // Spectral Sound

Charlie - Spacer Woman // Mr Disc

What else? I was wanking all over the new remix of The Klaxons by Matt and Pete the other day. Well, since then, I’ve listened and listened and can assure you that my enthusiasm was by no means misplaced. Moreover, the Nottingham-based pair have found a name for themselves – Night Moves. Check their Myspace, where I think you can stream the Klaxons mix right now.

I’ve been watching too many films recently; lack of funds has made binge-drinking less workable than usual, and the murderous cold weather means that being couped up in a cinema with a box of popcorn, or at home, chainsmoking in front of the laptop, has become an invaluable means of passing the dead, wintery time. I finally got around to seeing A Cock & Bull Story, which should have been an English Lit student’s wet dream, but kind of felt like an overgrown TV vanity project rather than the joyously self-consuming, revelatory movie I thought it would be. And it had one of those chummy Best-of-British, post-Trainspotting/Four Weddings supporting casts that morbidly holds the interest, but kind of pulls the wool over one’s eyes as regards the actual characterization (or lack of) going on – Steve Coogan, Rob Brydon, Keeley Hawes, Dylan Moran, Ian Hart, Greg Wise, Jeremy Northam, Kelly McDonald, Stephen Fry, Shirley Henderson and so on and so on. Anyway, I had nothing to do last night, so I thought it was time to watch David Cronenberg’s Dead Ringers (pictured above), in which Jeremy Irons plays twin gynaecologists who come unstuck over their obsession with some fucked-up actress and her bodged innards. It’s bloody entertaining, in that recklessly exploitative, slightly grubby Cronenberg way (though if you didn’t see his recent, low-key Spider, you should), but I left it at the half-way point – I was having my dinner, and chicken enchiladas don’t mix well with gynaecological horror, let me tell you…Cronenberg is, I hear, working on pre-production for an adaptation of Martin Amis’s bloated, brilliant-but-awful minor masterpiece London Fields, a book which even its narrator describes as ‘unfilmable’. I dare say it’ll never get made; I think Cronenberg and a couple of others have tried in the past, and backed out. Anyway, if it does get made, surely Ray Winstone for Keith and Hugh Grant for Guy? That’s how I’ve always envisioned it, contrary even to the descriptions in the novel…Seriously off the point here. This is meant to be a music blog. But while I’m on the topic, while watching Dead Ringers last night I remembered how much I love Jeremy Irons and how few notable movies he’s in these days (Dungeons & Dragons? Prrmph…). Whacking his name in the IMDB, as you do, I was delighted to find that along with Laura Dern (one of my favourite actresses, largely because I kinda fancied her when my ten-year-old self watched Jurassic Park) and Justin Theroux (who played the wry director fella in Mulholland Drive), he's starring in the new feature-length by David Lynch. It’s called The Inland Empire, the script is top-secret, and Lynch is filming totally in digital. Scheduled for premiere at the next Cannes, apparently. You know it’ll be good. Going to a free screening of (pain in the) Lars Von Trier’s new one, Manderlay, on Wednesday; I kinda hate the man, but I’m unashamed to say that I thought Dogville was phenomenal (don’t ask me about The Idiots) – question is, will the same tricks work this time around? I’ll probably let you know.

Right. What track to post? Well, I think we would all do well to remember just how good Ame were before Rej came out. This one’s a friggin’ barnstormer...

Ame - Shiro // Sonar Kollektiv

I’ll tell you what else I’m loving at the moment – ‘Kitchen’, released on Trapez by Noze late last year. Featuring a disconcertingly pervy vocal (‘It sounds like a drunk old man who’s had electro shock therapy and a whole bottle of absinthe,’ say Phonica), the production is nice, very nice: glitchy, sticky, tracky business that’ll rock any dancefloor that can tolerate the barmy lyrics which adorn it. But nice to see Trapez showing a sense of humour, not to mention a human voice.

Download: Noze - Kitchen // Trapez

There’s some interesting new releases emerged this week…The new Dubsided 12” by Jesse Rose is getting a lot of attention, and a lot of plays, which is understandable ‘cos this self-styled ‘fidget-house’ stuff is glitchy enough to find favour with our sort and boorish enough to satisfy a more breaks/hip hop-hungry floor. Rose teams up with Trevor Loveys for a 12” on Made to Play (home of Buckley’s superb ‘Block Party’), and again the sounds are smart, though I prefer Loveys’s own stuff on Front Room and Freerange. So, yeah, all of the above with sound colossal out, but I can’t help but feel there’s something implacably wrong about all this post-This is Sick/A Bit Patchy tackle; isn’t all just a bit too….cartoonish? Connaisseur, whose first release was Patrick Chardronnet’s sublime ‘Eve By Day’, have a new single from Jochen Trappe out – the A-side is fussy tech-funk, while Robert Babicz provides a remix on the flip that brings a dreamier minimalism to proceedings. I haven’t got a copy yet, but I highly recommend it….Uffy, a new signing to France’s Ed Banger, provides the double-header Pop the Glock/Ready to Uff. The original ‘Pop the Glock’ has a take-it-or-leave-it Peaches/Avenue D vibe going on, and SebastiAn’s remix (predictably) takes it through the warped, haemorrhage-funk blender. The highlight of the 12” is Mr Oizo’s rendering of ‘Ready to Uff’ which paints from same retrofuturist Parisian block party palette as ‘Half a Moustache’. What do you make of John Tejada? I have mixed feelings. I’ve seen him DJ and he is FANTASTIC, and the Poker Flat mix he did (included on the recent box set) is irresistible; production-wise, I’m not so sure. He puts out a lot of stuff, and a lot of it passes me right by, then along comes a ‘Mono on Mono’ or ‘Sweat on the Walls’ and I cream my pants, wondering why I don’t listen to more Tejada. Well, this week John T returns to spiritual home Poker Flat with a new 12”, ‘Big City Music’. From what I can tell, it falls into the exceptionally-dull-at-home-but-will-sound-great-in-the-mix camp; in other words, a sturdy but by no means essential purchase. Here’s a stonking, retro-house joint from Martin Landsky which pops up on Tejada’s Poker Flat mix:

Martin Landsky - Reject // Poker Flat

I’ve spent most of this morning listening to Aphex’s ‘Ambient Works 85-92’ – how good is that? I have to remind myself once every couple of months quite how perfect and thrilling and ahead-of-its-time and supernaturally melodic it actually is. ‘Tha’ and ‘Ptolemy’ make me quiver so much that regular exposure to ‘em is not advised – I would post one of them, but if there was an album that was actually WORTH paying a tenner for, it were this. So buy it.

Most of the records/tracks I've mentioned are available here. Give the artists some money.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Paint the whole world with a rainbow

This is a bugger. TAPE's good friend Matt Waites, resident DJ at Liars Club and AKA dastardly remixer Dangerflirt, has just sent me his latest track. He's done it with Pete from Liars Club, and I don't know as yet what they're calling themselves for it, but it's a remix of 'Gravity's Rainbow' by 'nu-rave' (jesus) indie chancers The Klaxons. It's absolutely AMAZING, and not to be confused with the bizarre re-rub by To My Boy that you can download from The Klaxons' Myspace page. I am, unfortunately, under strict instructions not to post it, 'cos it's not yet been mastered, record company will whine, artists will starve etc; but trust me when I say it's a fucking high watermark for indie-acid house shenanigans, with beefy synths, rude bass and amyl rush after amyl rush...Erol is apparently loving it, and desperate to play it out now (I can understand his eagerness - this track is custom-made to annihilate the 'floor at Trash/Bugged Out), but Matt and Pete have displayed admirable restraint and asked Sir Alkan to wait. I guess we'll have to wait too. But look out for it, it should emerge in the nearish future on Noize; and perhaps we'll post it when it's sold a few copies....I have a feeling it's going to sell more than a few, so fair play to Matt and Pete for a job well done.

More music soon, I promise.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

I am trying to make your chart

Mr Soft's Current Top 10

1. DELIA & GAVIN - REVELEE (CARL CRAIG REMIX) // DFA Absolutely massive this is, and I can't wait till it hits the racks in a couple of weeks.
2. LAZY FAT PEOPLE - BIG CITY/DARK WATER // BORDER COMMUNITY Fairly straightforward, nicely padded hypno-house in the Border Community grand style.
3. MAX MOHR - OLD SONG // PLAYHOUSE Rather splendid B-side from Mohr's 'Trickmixer' EP released way back in 2004, also included on the last Famous When Dead comp, and recently brought to my rapt attention by eagle-eyed R. Carnage
4. HOT CHIP - OVER & OVER (SOLID GROOVE REMIX) // DFA/EMI Ok, so it's just another bumpin', blokey house track from Solid Groove with a few token snippets of Hot Chip on top. But it's killer.
5. BUTANE - TIGERBITCH (JEREMY P. CAULFIELD REMIX) // DUMB UNIT Sticky, up it's own k-hole minimal from one of my favourite producers, that I'll almost definitely have forgotten in a week or two. I love it in spite of myself.
6. MYSTERY JETS - THE BOY WHO RAN AWAY (RITON RE-DUB) // 679 Hooligan punk-funk for the better class of indie disco.
I know it's all but dead and buried by now, but I've only just realized how sensational this is.
8. ROY AYERS - TARZAN (AME REMIX) // UBIQUITY The Ame boys steer Ayers into minimal, emotive, reconstructed Carl Craig waters, with subdued keys and tribal toms aplenty. It's their way.
9. BOOKA SHADE - NIGHT FALLS EP // GET PHYSICAL I was very harsh about the A-side here, mainly 'cos the B-sides are so good. I was wrong. They're all good.
10. SALIF KEITA - YAMORE (LUCIANO REMIX) // CADENZA Been caning this for a nice long while, and still far from bored - celestial goings-on from Mr Lucien.

More blabbing and tracks asap.
site hit counter