Monday, 23 June 2008

If you've ever walked through a city during the summer and someone's had an old Stax or Motown record blazing out of their open window, the rhodes organs and soaring vocals melding with the noise of traffic and commuters, then Rustie's latest remix may sound oddly familiar. He's taken Jamie Lidell's sunsoaked soul cut 'Another Day' and stapled it onto his own grimey city backdrop, making the track's earnest lovelorn pleas become rooted in urban reality rather than seventies nostalgia. The track is available on the Another Day 12" alongside the original and another impressive remix from Matthew Herbert. Rustie is at Fabric on the 1st August and Jamie Lidell is playing Bestival in September and Shepherds Bush Empire in mid-December.

Jamie Lidell - Another Day (Rustie RMX)

If the grooves on your 'Since I Left You' record have worn thin waiting for a follow up then Gothenberg duo Air France's new EP 'No Way Down' should help sustain you for a while yet. All of The Avalances' tropical atmosphere flows through the EP, with 'June Evenings' adding an English breeze with icy Human League vocals.

Air France - June Evenings

Lazy summer afternoons can become a drag though and if you're one of those impatient for the nights to roll around then Parisian's Nôze have created the perfect booze drenched dance record for the haziest of evenings. The whole of their latest 'Songs on the Rocks' LP mixes Get Physical's trademark pop-techno sound with balkan swing and climatic Fischerspooner-esque singalong choruses. Nôze aren't playing ANY UK DATES THIS SUMMER, an absolute tragedy, somebody PLEASE book them. You can hear just how much they smoke live from this recording.

Nôze - L'Inconnu Du Placard

Nôze's UK summer no-show may be cause to despair but good news is always only a second away, Ponytail's full length 'Ice Cream Spiritual' is finally released!! All tribal percussion, psychadelic walls of guitars and deerhoofy squeals of joy, it's one of the records of the year for sure. Lead single 'Celebrate the Body Electric (It Came From An Angel)' is the albums explosive centrepiece, lurching forward on low end riffs and flourishing with gorgeous harmonies and squalls of guitar, it's an absolute monster.

Ponytail - Celebrate the Body Electric (It Came From An Angel)

Finally, Post-punk wreckage salvagers Acute Records have found more gold in their Eighties treasure chests in the shape of The Lines, not as discordant as bands like The Pop Group or 23 Skidoo or as fluid as Gang of Four or Orange Juice, The Lines tragically fell through the cracks. Re-issued LP Memory Span's highlight Nerve Pylon's jangle-pop riffs and euphoric coda show just how fickle music history can be and huge encouragement for all those still digging in the crates!

The Lines - Nerve Pylon

Monday, 26 May 2008

Hercules & Love Affair have really set shit off, diva-ish vocals, the spirit of 80s NY loft parties and endless handclaps over cosmic pads are once again rolling over England's more decadent dancefloors. H&LA may have pricked the conscience, but it's Eskimo Records' Aeroplane who are surely set to swallow it with two huge tunes recently laid to wax. Their own 12, Whispers, is powerful enough but the real sucker punch comes from their sublime remix of Low Motion Disco's 'Love Love Love'. Aeroplane gradually whip up a disco frenzy before the track completely unloads half way through with a relentless, euphoric synth line driving it to an ecstatic climax. You can see them unleash this monster and the disco takeover in action on the 7th June at East Village in Shoreditch.

Low Motion Disco - Love Love Love (Aeroplane Remix)

Eskimo providing one of this year's most stunning remixes finally puts a dent in Honest Jon's' monopoly in that field. Their stunning series of Tony Allen remix 12"s seems to have drawn to a close but to celebrate they have compiled them all on one CD, Lagos Shake: A Tony Allen Chop Up. My personal highlight is Salah Ragab's magical Cairo edit of Olé, but nearly all the other remixers (including Carl Craig, Hypnotic Brass Band, Bonde De Role and Moritz Von Oswald) contributions are also sensational, making Lagos Shake utterly essential, not to mention worthy of celebration, which you can do on the 5th of July at the Barbican.

Tony Allen - Olé (Salah Ragab Cairo Edit)

Lagos Shake isn't the only stunner from Honest Jons this month though, their re-release of Steel An' Skin's 'Afro Punk Reggae Dub' EP is an absolute killer 12". Their dizzying mix of hyperactive riddims, steel drums and blissed out reggae vocals make me wonder if El Guincho has some distant relatives who were exploding with the same joy in 70s Jamaica, busting out of all types of Jamaican musical sterotypes in the process.

Steel An' Skin - Reggae Is Here Once Again

Another man determined to smash musical pre-conceptions is Flying Lotus, who's LP 'Los Angeles' establishes a place for instrumental hip-hop on the hallowed Warp Records. 'Parisian Goldfish' highlights all of the record's idiosyncracies; the dusty cracks of the beats mixed with futuristic synth and the eccentric use of glitch especially. The LP drops in June and Lotus will be playing live in the same month at Venn Festival (Bristol) on the 8th, his own Brainfeeder festival (London) on the 14th and at Massive Attack's Meltdown Festival (London) on the 19th.

Flying Lotus - Parisian Goldfish

I'm pretty certain Flying Lotus didn't produce Susan Christie's Paint a Lady LP but his fingerprints still seem to be all over it. Her romantic old folk songs would sit nicely alongside Nina Nastasia or Vashti Bunyan were it not for their sporadic bursts into sweeping choruses with the kind of insistent and funked out drum and bass sections that only the most skilled of hip hop producers can normally coax out. This record's been out on Finders Keepers for a while now, but I love it so much I wanted to plug it again.

Susan Christie - For The Love of a Soldier

Monday, 11 February 2008

Mix #2

Download Mix #2 Here

1. Fela Ransome Kuti & Africa 70 - Expensive Shit (Expensive Shit)
2. Skream - Midnight Request Line (Midnight Request Line 12")
3. Xiu Xiu - Clowne Towne (Fabulous Muscles)
4. Owls - Everyone Is My Friend (Owls LP)
5. James Chance & The Contortions (Buy The Contortions)
6. Joanna Newsom - Peach, Plum, Pear (The Milk-Eyed Mender)
7. John Fahey - On The Sunny Side of the Ocean (The Transfiguration of Blind Joe Death)
8. Bonnie 'Prince' Billy - Nomadic Revery (All Around) (I See A Darkness)
9. Ada - Cool My Fire (I'm Burning) (Blondie)
10. Violent Femmes - Add it Up (Violent Femmes)
11. Autechre - Eutow (Tri Repetae)
13. Edan - Promised Land (Beauty & The Beat)

Wednesday, 16 January 2008

Mix #1

Download Mix #1 Here

1. Markus Guentner - Oceans Day (Kompakt's Pop Ambient 2008)
2. Thom Yorke - The Eraser (Ellen Allien remix) (Ellen Allien Myspace)
3. Max Tundra - Cabasa (Mastered by Guy At The Exchange )
4. Tony Allen - Kilode (Carl Craig remix) (Kilode Remix 12")
5. Masta Killa - Masta Killa (No Said Date)<>
6. Steve Reid - Kai (Rhythmatism)
7. El Guincho - Palmitos Park (Myspace)
8. Rappers Delight Club - When We Were Kids (Myspace)
9. Modest Mouse - Gravity Rides Everything (The Moon & Antarctica)
10. Las Malas Amistades - Sin Corazon (Patio Bonita
11. M. Ward - Poison Cup (Post-War)
12. Boxcutter - Kaleid (Glyphic)

There's a few themes running through this mix, which was actually compiled quite haphazardly. The clashing of technology with much more natural qualities is recurring, from Carl Craig injecting Tony Allen's vibrant, earthy afrobeat with the bewildering urgency modern technology so often provides to Max Tundra using his trademark toy synths to diarise a schoolyard romance. Cynicism crushing also features heavily this week, M. Ward being openly emotive & romantic on 'Poison Cup' and Rappers Delight Club providing the beautiful naivety that only children can. Las Malas Amistades and El Guincho helped me choose the artwork, providing lush soundtracks for both for the hot summer and wet winter of southern hispanic countries. Whilst Markus Guetner and Masta Killa both celebrate water's many properties.
Jack xx