Pornographic Novel EP
трип Records (Trip)
Out 21st August
From Russia with love, Vladimir Dubyshkin features in The Electro Review today. His latest release once again bears the трип hallmark, known for excellence the world over. This provocatively titled EP is bound to get the attention of all who pass by. Because it's music, we can adopt a healthy sense of humour. In the 90s, Russian pornography exploded thanks to the internet making it suddenly available to all who could pay. And there are a lot who do, with some 35% of all internet traffic (see source) related to the subject. Perhaps this article will flag as one, I hope so. It does conjure the question as to whether it is ethical and what is this phenomenon an expression of? Are a good percentage of us secret voyeurs? Why? Does the seemingly natural dropping of boundaries reflect into those who watch, and their standards drop in unison producing a societal feedback loop? Should we care? Philosophy aside, it's time we listened to the music.
With a heavy beat that throbs and pulses with siren like scratching sounds, Russian Porn Magazine begins. The music rises in amplitude, pushing the frantic rhythms harder. The percussion swells as new drums layer in, adding quickness to the already persistent tempo. Melodic tones are slowly dressed across the top and they sink into the entire mix until their chimes convey silence across the bass. This is only brief, however, as a break in the fabric of the track releases the pushing and enchanting rhythm. New eerie tones with discordant qualities offer a novel angle, they build and fade as if never there. Frantic techno beats insist on full-on dancing as an entire room of people are begged to join the dance floor.
Next, warping synth tones waver in a melodic bracket which repeats on itself over ever increasing effect. The phrase begins to shift and then a heady bass drum is added to the mix. It throws down another head-first dancing rhythm which breaks the tension with its clarity. We should be dancing to this. Chirping synth tones mark a cheery melody while deep down and lovely bass pounds away at the tempo. The music builds with another melodic entry, breathing tones harmonise and add buoyancy to the swirling mixture of percussion and composed euphoria. The Return Of The Drunken Son makes it sound like a really good time.
Now we get to Driving The Bus. This sounds fun straight away as mechanical sounds grumble and crunch to the sound of a quickening cymbal. Bass drum resonates in the echo chamber as the repeating rhythmic phrase bashes the dents out of the system. Huge vibrating walls of presence shudder with the continual fuel that is beat and layer. Ever-present tempo froths and coils as each element is given space to thrive. Now we're getting somewhere, a screeching sound lets us pause for breath. Who gets on? Who cares, let's go. Forward facing and sheer energy bring this techno and rhythm sensation into the stereo for us all to get aboard.
Next, a wall of synthesiser hits us with a rapid repeating chime. Crackling sounds made from distorted vocals and strange effect bring out a humanist edge which chants in time to a building beat. As the percussion finds a crest to surf on the music plateaus into a neat section of dance with a cymbal white water splash that surfaces in between the strokes. Deaf Artist perhaps asks us to examine the world of a person expressing more than the usual percentage of expression in visual form. Mute musician, blind writer, tasteless mother-in-law, the list goes on.
Now we are in the Company of 302s. These scattery beats hit us with frantic rapidity and overlayers of intuitive strikes. The pulse is amplified as the dancing synthesiser tones are adorned with shattering cymbals and jogging snare which keeps us on our toes. It's a good place to be as the music is destined once again to keep people dancing. Another layer of melody is shoved into the queue with a VIP ticket to the front. They are let in straight away and head for the stage where a keyboard waits. Extra keys chug along in symphonic glee as the rampaging rhythms continue onward through the valley.
The last number starts with a vocal sample that loops to the rhythm of a walking bass drum. Woody tones build and then begin to create a percussive harbour for ships to pull in for anchor. And they do, a forest of engines and sails emerges from the horizon and makes neat lines in the gently chopping waters. The vocal returns, to mark the next section of sound. Manic tones like a touch-dial phone sing out in catchy compositions before the music throws down another blast of rhythmic tension. Amphetamine Freak certainly has all the right ingredients for frantic and worry-free exertion. Who needs drugs when we've got Vladimir Dubyshkin eh?
Pornographic Novel by Vladimir Dubyshkin is out now on Bandcamp
Follow Vladimir Dubyshkin on Soundcloud
You can follow Trip Records on Soundcloud
Buy the music from Bandcamp
Also follow Trip Records on Facebook
TBR: 7th September
Cressida returns to Voitax with a brand new EP. This time the original Londoner who resettled in Berlin is attacking the grime and hardcore genres with an electronica battering ram. It's okay, those guys like that sort of thing. Voitax have established a keen reputation for highlighting the cream of contemporary dance music and this lucky 21 on the register cements the ethic like a star in the pavement. Does the artist refer to the racial slur or the Soviet martial art with the title of this EP? Combat without weapons sounds more exciting and shaming those who may have ridiculed him by operating at the top of his trade definitely feels good.
The music begins with the title track as heavenly sounds merge with a vocal sample, distant and harmonious. A pulsating rhythm pushes forward which is followed by sudden surged of throbbing and resonant bass. Then, smashes of drum fill crack the ice in shattering riffs which scatter into each other. The music pauses, letting the air out, then begins again at a more tempered pace. The same ferocious pang sits interestingly in chapter like bars of sound which swell and eddy with disparate energy. Gradually the sounds build into cacophonous punches, one at a time, as huge drumming and thundering bass collapse into the stereo sound-scope.
Next is Al Gore Riddim. It opens with a straight forward beat that soon evaporates into a mist foray of cymbals, snare, and bass. The repeating licks rattle against tempo structures and loop formulae as stuttering percussion reveals vocal and static swirling tones. Touch-dial like melodies reverberate through corridors of drum and slamming doors. The full-on hedonistic rhythm pushes on with technological fury as electronic sonics dapple and split into ghettoline spectra. Staggered bass and thrashing cymbals playfully bounce I hyperactive squash games against ever closing walls.
The third number begins with a smooth and laid back beat. Drums and cymbals clamber on a sunny axis as various luminous tones rain down in sluggish rays. Vocal marks a section and a deep submariner bass throttles with resonant sonar up-draft. As the bass swells into vortices of entrenched kinesis, sprinkles of upper beats mutate and evolve with continual impetus. Move To The Witness has less wall and more cloud, an ambient end to the A side of the record.
Turing over the vinyl shows us Rapunzel. This mythical long-haired princess is represented by a catchy snappy snare-based beat that is accompanied by tenderising bass drops at sporadic intervals. A melancholy section is persuaded into the groove as sombre bells chime in a simple melodic flush. Moving parts of the track swirl and twist which match up varying resolution of pattern that work to illuminate a network of avenues which twist into one guide-rope. The music is interrupted by a phone-in caller who requests something new. Rather than immediately change, the DJ smoothly transitions from one form to another while maintaining the soul of the track. Clever stuff.
This is followed by an angular infusion of choral voices, hidden behind an oscillating gate. Then, smotherings of rhythm expand from seeds of sound. Vines and creepers reach up into spongy top-soil then out into the open air as breezy percussion air-washes the newly formed leaves. Splitting tones and sprinkles of powerful rhythm create mental vectors filled with spacial awareness then garnished with just enough dots to make a picture. Breaking Parallel runs side by side with introspection and hypnotic tempo.
The final number is titled The Place Beyond Your Meadow. It begins on an ocean wave, sloshing slowly against a warm shore. Resonant tones vibrate in sunshine interludes which begin to harmonise and create mirages of sound. Slow and graceful opening of petals like blue lilies on the shores of the Nile meet breathy voices that chant in spell-binding notes. Radiant shards of chord beam down as speckles of melodic foundation break through the sandy underway. It's a beautiful transition from the full-on spectacle offered at the other end of this remarkable record.
You can follow Cressida on Facebook
Listen to Voitax Records on Soundcloud
Visit Voitax Records online
And find their music on Bandcamp
The Seventh Signal
Wolf Trap Records (Red Series)
TBR: September 25th
The second instalment in the Red Series from the cutting edge Wolf Trap Records. In this three track stomper, Stefan Weise aka Syrte harnesses the darkness and focusses it into a choppy and energetic triplet of unique mixes. This exploratory and inventive sound journey commissioned by Wolf Trap is getting pretty serious as the second Red Series release gets underway.
With a rumble of deep and jungle-like drumming, the music begins. Ambient blips and zaps spring from the sides into the centre as rhythmic pulses of melody and drum continue to build and grow in density. The first track is called Nex and it doles out the necessary tempo and drive to ensure a great dancing energy. Additions of percussion build the framework even further as the music progresses, rhythms within rhythms create a three-dimensional soundtrack to community.
Seventh Signal is next, and it begins with a chirruping rhythm. Solid drums with deep and hollow interiors create a resonant and tubular pulse. Various sounds form at odd angles and cascade the tempo into a hypnogogic experience. More massive bass energises the mixture as clatterings and sudden additions of double timing break open the eggshell to let the yolk spill out. The persistent tempo rampages through ambient noises and digitisations of nature.
The EP ends on a more dreamy number. Sullen synthesiser tones open in wavering patterns which build like ripples expanding on still water. The slow moving kinesis crackles with radio static as warmth and magnitude rise like sourdough. Cosmic rays shine in crumbling dissections of space as thrusts of slicing vibration. This track is called Konigsberg and shows us the underbelly of the artist.
Visit Stefan Weise online
Visit Wolf Trap Records online
TBR: 30th August
Born and brought up in Columbia, this Brooklyn-based musician is celebrating a great run of music since They Told Us It Was Hard, But They Were Wrong. The remix which followed took Ela Minus even further into the labyrinth of DJ repertoires around the globe. Now, we wait with white knuckle enthusiasm for the next offering. Megapunk is a short and snappy number, like the title, and makes use of all the techno wizkiddery Ela Minus has to offer plus a smashing vocal element.
It begins with a heady rhythm layered in snares, hats, and bass. Vocal rolls in riding an open-top car. The breezy delivery whisks through our hair as the accelerator pushes on. The lyrics unfold like a rock song, build-ups in the composition frame an elevation in the musical surge. Heavy and sweeping synthesisers dance with droplets of shifting key. Thorough dissipation of energy across each section of the music, there's nothing we can't grab hold of.
Follow Ela Minus on Youtube
Open Music Lab x Redox
Out: 14th August
“What we achieved in this album is just a beautiful example of what happens when people come together with wonder and work collectively in order to create beauty for the world.” Idil Abla
The Berlin musical community and social scene come together in the form of Open Music Lab. The ethics are clear, bring people together and see how they get along. From diverse backgrounds in music and culture, a compendium of musicians have collaborated to create one stand-out EP production. Redox contains the work of seven unique creators who have communicated and mused together in order to create one thing. An embodiment of peace in our time, this record takes many of the faces in the electronic music masquerade and shows how the pantomime progresses independently.
It begins with a beautiful classical guitar strummed melody. Warm vinyl distortion crackles like a nearby fire. Notes build from the music as a pretty and intimate vocal line enters with whisperings and poetry. We listen intently as the music builds alongside a gentle drumming. A musical progression evolves from picked notes that nestle within larger chord structures. Freya Van Husen offers up Volandora, it's magical and painted in all the colours of folk.
Next is Silencio by Gotopo. Bass and guitar work in harmony as sonic song is sprayed in moments of emotive clarity. Guitar picks at the underlying motif while slow breathing rhythm creates an open door for us to enter. The foreign language lyrics mean so much as the disposition of their singer is dramatically performed.
Warbles and disembodied sounds curdle to form a piano melody that resonates within glorious depths. Slender vocals paint stripes on the humming harmonies with an amplified hush. Then, a foray of drumming begins while loops vocal projections build a clever rhythm. Synthesiser tones wash down like pouring rain as the dreamy echoes cast their spell over the listener. Libre by Inda Wood brings the electronic music element to the forefront.
A swell of synthesiser and human voice marks the entrance of Maret's Liz A deep sway of string and brass lifts a clattering train rhythm into the sonic horizon while droplets of cybernetic composition flutter from the clouds. The drum solidifies for a moment, creeping along as the bars define it. Then once again the liquid motion of molten timing runs forward, rivering across jagged scapes of vocal inflection and sloshy metalwork.
Then, a breathy tone rises from the warmth as a countdown signals the ignition sequence of the next number. Rising tones build in pressure as the activation repeats, a tension builds in invisible yet tenuous strands of intent. Notes dapple like birdsong through sudden and lingering mists. This is just a test, a spectral dreaminess then washes through, rinsing the passion from blue to red. MINQ brings us Five, a primary set of mathematical functions that translate the world into Latinate symbols.
Morphena is next with C1B3RT3K. It looks like someone's login password. Not mine, thankfully. That would be awkward. A jumpy rhythm opens up with vocal line that repeats standardised phrases. It senses like something trivial yet acutely different is happening, a subtle nuance gives us poise for thought. Rampant and thrashing electronic happening begin to chant and chunt in wafts of well homogenised emulsions of scattered sound. A busy colour-scheme plays in spiralling sections on a woody and hedonistic bass and space-sample.
It ends with a resonant pounding drum. Idil Abla presents Bumble. A double layering of rhythmic fills is added to by a third, then a fourth, as tempo is defined by various tonal drums and cymbal. Bass throbs behind, filling voids with a slight resonance which holds as each percussive sound decays into the next. This is dance via distinctive and persistent rhythm, trance breaks push forward while minimal drum lines throw a stitched percussion directly at us.
You can listen to Open Music Lab on Soundcloud
Buy Redox EP on Bandcamp
That's A Babel EP
Science Cult Records
TBR: 18th September
As Science Cult Records build their repertoire with talent from every groove of the record, this time they find themselves getting another hole in one with Leonardo Chevy. This label debut erects a monument comparable to the mythical tower of all knowledge. Back then of course it was possible for one person to know all things known if they studied for many years. These days, thankfully, there is far too much on offer to put it all into one structure. That is unless the internet counts, making the Earth a sphere of Babel. I digress, let's press play and recount the sounds.
With scatterings of digital fizz, a thudding bass begins a vibrant tempo. Shakers and hats scatter as deep and sweeping bass squidges along a broken path. Ambient and discordant arpeggios begin to rain down on the shore adding cubes of brightly coloured glow. The music evolves and brings out distorted vocoder sections which give a humanistic edge to the otherwise computerised mainframe. That's A Babel does seem to coalesce several seemingly unrelated directions together, forming a towering polygon of rhythm and melodics.
The next on offer is a Disturbance version of the title track, produced by Syrte. It enters with that dirty zap from before but with extra umph. The vocoder section is utilised straight away as rhythmic taps on the metalwork build and unravel into slicing shards of broken crystalline chords. The music is compressed and squeezed through a narrow filter which crumbles and distorts all the sounds into a spreadable paste, devoid of all its former bounty. Then, the floodgates are opened with a quantum switch and the music pours through the double slit in a strangely resolute fashion.
Next up is Angry Synthetic. It's got all the instruments and sounds from before however now they're used differently. A fast rhythm hits us immediately as vibrating digi-strings twang across a thuddy bass. The melodic reverberations increase as vocoder elements chant in time to the back-beat. A new element of voice then falls into place, where melody and heady phonics drift in a circular motion above the mix. Pure anthemic flow is distilled from the gloom and static as sections bounce from one to the other in structured chapters.
We finish up with Through Tunnel. This six and a half minute danceathon grabs us with deep housey bass that's framed with electro fizz and buzz. A massive a vibrant bass then chords underneath, springing the underside into an elasticated frenzy. The huge undercarriage of this number is decorated with ranging melodics that flutter like petals and dust particles across the way, flouring the dough with sprinkles of palette and garnish.
Listen to Leonardo Chevy on Spotify
You can follow Leonardo Chevy on Facebook
Stil Vor Talent Records
Out: 31st July
The Angel Heart has many things on the horizon with a huge build-up over the summer. This single is proof that the musician's work is never done as yet more progress and dimension is added to the sounds. In a round-about-way, the B-side is the first number on offer, something I find curiously fun. Simple things eh?
So with Idiosynkrasia it begins. A thumping and steady electro bass drum resounds in a quick and grabby tempo. A staggered element releases a shimmering cymbal and possibly a snare as a waft of almost aromatic effect brings out yet more reverberating percussion. Splashes of chord ring through the bass in luminescent drifts before a twangy string and pipe sound starts a melodic chapter. Up and down dancing motifs bring out a fun and lively edge while interesting computer sounds chatter and churn along the line of the beat.
Next is Shine, This number takes the title of the single. Immediately obvious is the track waveform, it's almost identical to the previous number. Either a remix or a delicate restructuring along the same basic idea, this one enters at a different angle. The hedonistic elements tingle as shiny chords greet thumping dance beats along the fairy-lights and mahogany sidings that conjure in my mind. Great builds and ferocious consistency in the tempo give this a floor-filling feel that's irresistible.
Both of these great tracks are available now on Spotify
Listen to Tim Engelhardt on Soundcloud
Find all the info on the Tim Engelhardt website
Out: 3rd July
So we're headed over to Scotland today because we have discovered Discovery. This track is from the prolific Zildjianpinky, an epic piano based uplifting electronica musician. Zildjianpinky has only been releasing music since the beginning of the year, and he's already put six tracks into the cosmos for all. This latest number features the Space Shuttle on its cover, so let's add a bit of thrust and play this mix.
As the countdown begins to the sound of abstracted wavering chords, the music creeps into our zone of appreciation. Humming melodics slowly decorate the glistening towers as we prepare to feel the G. Then, as the all clear is given, resonant and deep drums begin to throb with delicate tempo. A seductive edge gravitates with us, drawing us into the flowing compendium of sounds. A true dreamer, Discovery allows us to fly in the ether of sonic imagination to the impetus of the iconic space-age.
You can find music from Zildjianpinky on Bandcamp
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Rowan Blair Colver for The Electro Review.