36TH SELECTION – A new one every Monday.
Want to stay up to date with the most recent music, for instance for your DJing? Each Monday, we list and comment on our favourite releases of the moment. This week:
DJ Strawberry – Cycles [Outlines, 2022-09-23]
FootworKINGz, a very cool dance crew of footwork:
A further explanation of the movement:
Over the years, the 120-125 BPM Chicago house accelerated its tempo to 145 BPM for the ghetto and booty house, then later to 160 BPM to satisfy young dancers that were looking for new rhythms to dance to. During some competitions, they were indeed playing 33 RPM records at 45 RPM to challenge themselves with super fast leg moves, which inspired producers to mimic the effect in their tracks. This is how the “footwork” musical genre got born, with emblematic figures such as RP Boo, DJ Nate, Rashad and Spinn. Now, we all know that hypnotic techno has more to do with Detroit than with Chicago. However, some Japanese artists, mainly DJ Fulltono and CRZKNY, have injected atmospheres and minimalism into footwork, and the link from the fusion becomes more obvious…
DJ Strawberry’s debut album is an ode to the minimal footwork with the codes of two genres: the meticulous sharp touch from the minimal music and the syncopated rhythms and hip hop samples from the footwork (“Dance/Music” for instance contains a vocal sample of a discussion between Rashad and Spinn).
The overall composition is well-dosed through subtle sub-bass and gritty off-kilter percussion, carrying nicely-nuanced atmospheres for an overall very pleasant listening experience.
S8JFOU – Op•Echo [Parapente Music, 2022-09-21]
S8jfou explains his visual concept (subtitles available):
“This is the future.” Why? Because electronic music is evolving like our societies; an artistic movement that is mixing more and more its musical subgenres and a species that is blending more and more its various populations. Musically and humanly, we enrich ourselves through crossbreeding. French artist S8jfou’s new album illustrates the future of IDM by mixing ambient, electronica, breakbeat, downtempo, glitch, microhouse and broken beats together, which makes the sound particularly fresh and creative.
Cinematic and percussive, the release is particularly interesting to visit, being somewhat at a crossroads between the works of Rone and Max Cooper. Like them, S8jfou accompanies his artistic creation with a conceptual live performance, that aims to create an artistic dialogue between the sound and some visual lighting.
Finally, as if it wasn’t enough, the LP is also a fundraiser for Ukraine…
An anecdote: “S8jfou” in French refers to “Suis-je fou?” (“Am I mad?”), a potential relevant question, the artist having chosen “the path of the hermit”, living far from civilisation in a little cabin that he built himself in the mountain, in order to fully focus on his art. However, as writer Keniel Huntley once said: “Art is madness, madness is beauty”…
CONCEPTUAL – Time is Over [Delirio, 2022-09-21]
Conceptual’s sick mix for Monument to extend the pleasure:
Let’s go back to more familiar vibes with Conceptual’s last release; a meagre single containing only two tracks, but regarding the first one in particular: what a track… (The second piece is cool too, but for us, it’s more an interlude than a track).
With artists such as Retina.it, Prg/M, Milena Głowacka, Formant Value, D-Leria’s label Delirio, with its very recognisable artwork of comics, achieves release after release its ambition to produce cutting-edge contemporary techno and we love it! Neel is in charge of the mastering, Conceptual is Italian, how can it be better?
Viels – Intus Vacuum [Attic Music, 2022-09-23]
Talking about Neel, his excellent studio “Enisslab” is also at work behind “Intus Vacuum”. With Viels from Milan’s area and Attic Music’s owner Fabrizio Lapiana from Rome, we are obviously extending our journey to Italy and we won’t complain! During the listening of the EP, you can tell how much Viels imbues his music with the various imprints he has worked with: the release has some hints of the energy of Dynamic Reflection and Non Series, some magnetism from Edit Select Records and some melodic layers of his own label End Of Perception. As a result, the tracks are appreciable for both the dancefloor and the headphones.
Echowolf – Dreieinigkeit [Snork Enterprises, 2022-09-24]
If Tresor’s very unique underworld set the fundaments of Deepbass’ musical creations, it has also strongly impacted Snork Enterprises‘ owner Syntax Error. The first artist translated the legendary club’s humming vibe into deep atmospheres, while the second one, formerly into DnB and psy trance, extracted the heat of the night, which he expresses through sexy four-to-the-floor grooves.
Experimental German artist Berk Offset recently created a second alias, Echowolf, to produce this type of sound: the meeting between the “sonic scientist” and the label couldn’t be more relevant, with the participation of mysterious producer Headless Horseman for an epic dark remix.
Bruno Sanchez & Paracusia – Velvet Splinters [Paradise Lost Recordings, 2022-09-24]
The adage saying “leave the bass music to the British artists” is one more time nicely contradicted by an American label: Paradise Lost Recordings based in New Hampshire. There is however still a distant link, New Hampshire being in the “New England” region… (ok, we are out). US woodsman Bruno Sanchez & Paracusia from the UK (Ah!), whom we mainly know from their work on Onset, aren’t on their first release with Paradise Lost, thinking for instance of Paracusia’s fabulous album “Only Seen At Night“. The artists are not only talented electronic percussionists, but also very inspired “mood painters”, as heard again in the present EP.
Milo Raad – Sidata EP [MindTrip, 2022-09-16]
One loop, a few different patterns of percussions, sometimes we don’t need anything more. There is however one important condition to survive the mental repetition: the loop must be dope. It’s not so easy to fulfil, Abdulla Rashim was for us the ultimate maestro of the genre. Well, now that Anthony Linell is producing “far far away in another galaxy”, we are tempted to shift our focus on Serbian artist Milo Raad, whose productions are tight and efficient since his first release on Revolt in 2019.
Esteban Miranda – Poison On Flame [TMM Recordings, 2022-09-16]
If you wanted to end the selection on a peaceful note, know that we have different plans… We smile while thinking of Vegim and Flekitza when they received the EP: they are accustomed to raw techno on their label TMM Recordings, but they must have jumped out of their chairs in front of such a great intensity… For Esteban Miranda, the release date was a normal Friday. Not sure what he eats in Columbia, but the energy of his tracks kept on rising since his entry into the production world in 2019. “Poison On Flame” is however not just “intense”; its atmospheres are particularly well-designed. Ultimately we want more, right after having destroyed the dancefloor.
* Page’s cover picture: Oye Kreuzkoelln in Berlin, a record shop from a member of our community.