Friday, 4 October 2019



The distorted arpeggios that wind their way through 'Pretty Boy' by Glasgow producer Wuh Oh give it this final act suspense. Instead of drops, the track opens up into gaping chasms, the suspense weaving its way through like the last level on a platformer; all the difficulty with the final boss yet to rear its head.

Different elements fade and fall from the scathing, sharpness of it all, with only the gleaming vocal harmonies (what Wuh Oh calls his "angelic choir impression") lancing in like the glow of some unholy machine, innocent in its unholiness—a sense of discovery, uncovery, delving deeper into an expansive, but increasingly claustrophobic world.

The synth scuttles and twangs, the bugs on the underside of a rock in a parallel dimension.

"The track Pretty Boy happened in a weird way," Wuh Oh tells yes/no over email. "I set myself the challenge of writing a track using only one synthesizer and no drums to see if I could achieve enough tension and release without resorting to typical build up and drop tropes.

"[But] the arpeggios were all major key. It sounded like an advert for a cruise holiday or some shit."

Moving the notes around, 'Pretty Boy' then transformed from his "corniest song yet" to his "spookiest." It's spooky alright. Sinister and demented in its last moments, everything comes to a stop as the synth takes on a new, garbled flavour; the motion of this final stage ends and the game's final boss appears. It's that scene-setting.

  • πŸ”” Watch this space for more about Wuh Oh.

Wuh Oh Internet Presence ☟

Tuesday, 1 October 2019



With its hesitant, thudding heartbeat, rhythmic flow of baleful water and skittering insectoid Goldeneye PP7 silencer percussion, 'Displacement' by SUN CORP。 cuts a drainpipe gloom, a seldom used fire escape aesthetic.

"You wake up in a strange city, how did you get here? Things are not quite right. Are you alive or already dead? There's no way of really knowing," the Australia-born, Singapore-based musicmaker sets the scene.

"Memories form in a foggy cloud. Which ones are real? You fill up the sink with water and see your reflection. Something hits the water."

Something filmic lurks in the heart of 'Displacement', not just in the description he gives, but in the atmospheric weariness and paranoia of the track; voices, stoked up from some unmentionable void, recall some lyrical past in the nocturnal glooping doom of the present. The result, perhaps, of making this track "in a somewhat delirious state" while stuck inside his apart for 2 weeks with the flu.

Either way, SUN CORP。 gathers textures for 'Displacement' and sets them in a compact 2-minutes-37-seconds frame of looming, lonely dread—a vignette for vaporwave after the shopping mall eternities and gleaming ads of tomorrow, where real life faces nights in boxes set in stalwart skyscrapers.

  • πŸ”” This SUN CORP。 track is taken from the upcoming 4-track Displacement EP, due out 5th October. It's actually a double EP releasing with a run of 50 cassette tapes; the A side is γ‚·γƒ³γ‚―γΎγŸγ―ζΊΊγ‚Œγ‚‹ ("Sink or Drown") and the B side is "Displacement". You can pre-order it here on Bandcamp.

SUN CORP。 Internet Presence ☟

Monday, 30 September 2019



"Just getting into bad relationships over and over. Then one day you realize that these relationships are just a reflection of what’s going on inside of you," writes Steven A. Clark of 'Karma'. With the skewed bassline cutting a warped groove, the cyclical – yes, karmic – guitar twinkling out of focus, and lyrics that speak of that "internal battle", the spills into your mind, seeping through the cracks.

At its centre swirl the vocals of Steven A. Clark himself. Worn, cradled in woozy effects and cutting an infectious R&B glimmer in lines like "Everyday, everyday, everyday / Telling me lies disguised as truths" and laying himself bare (literally) in the opener, "I'm naked / Over you..." it swings between these flying falsettos and a soothsaying mantra crooned in a plasma gravel: "Cause when the karma comes / The karma comes / karma's coming your way." A feverish warning.

"We do some much external shit looking for people, places, things, activities to make us happy, or distract us from the way we feel about ourselves," he explains more about the track. Something like Tame Impala analysing the uglier sides of the brain, 'Karma' is a psychedelic saunter around the block, a me-and-my-thoughts gloopy, gossamer tangle.

  • πŸ”” 'Karma' is taken from Steven A. Clark's upcoming album Hypervigilant, actual release date TBC. Stream 'Karma' by clicking this text and choosing from one of the various streaming services that you desire.

Steven A. Clark Internet Presence ☟
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Friday, 27 September 2019



From the very beginnings of 'Bright Future', with its curdled kazoo crunches and icy shards of synth, there's something in the sound that wrestles with the title of Teplice's track. Sub-bass tumbles along and a mellow miasma of plasma synth is ambient in the background, seeping into your skin when it all suddenly sinks into a mire of doom come chord-change.

The vocals do the hoping, literally. "I hope... / For a bright future" Berlin-based, London-born Teplice opens the song, unaffected and in a tired monotone. Later, insomniac lines – "I lay awake at night / Thinking of the moon / Sleep will greet me soon" – rise up and look likewise into a positive, albeit near, future. Alongside hoping is questioning, a haunted interrogation at the heart of this song like a mantra.

In harmonies that conjure spoken nonchalance like spoken spells under spectres that twang and lilt, something vocally like The Cranberries or maybe Warpaint, the existential inquiry curls out like smoke: "Is anything out there / Is anything out there / Is anything out there / Is anything..."—cut short at a moment of sudden discovery or resignation of futility. These vocals especially expel warmth, in tone, in rhythm, that makes the song bounce.

The simplicity of the lyrics stand the sentiment and imagery of up as monoliths, symbols and vignettes in a nocturnal frame of frozen electronica, driven by an unstoppable marching beat: the slow, officious plod of time. As ghostly as it is a real, true voice, 'Bright Future' wonders about the world outside—not outdoors, but outisde what you know, in something that summons the choice of music in Twin Peaks (inhabiting a realm similar to Rebekah Del Rio's 'No Stars', for example).

All the lilting vocals, all the sense of falling off the face of the Earth. And yet by the end of the track, the density of the track has lightened, the clouds begin to part; minimal and angular, 'Bright Future' is still warm and human, still hopes.

  • πŸ”” The product of working at producer, label owner, radio show host E.M.M.A's Producergirls workshop, this track is taken from Teplice's upcoming Bright Future EP, inspired, she says, by "contemporary feelings of angst, stagnation and uncertainty" as well as wanting "to capture a sense of time elapsing at a personal, social and historical level."

    "In this sense," she continues, "considering how individual lives intersect with historical moments, my grandma has been a massive inspiration. [...] It was important to me that she was represented [in the artwork]."

  • πŸ”” The Bright Future EP is set to be released on Pastel Prism Records on 18th October, and marks the inaugural release on the label. Pre-order it on Bandcamp.

πŸ‘‰ Read our interview with E.M.M.A by tapping these words πŸ‘ˆ

Teplice Internet Presence ☟

Thursday, 26 September 2019



The gooey shimmer of the guitar in 'Frank Ocean' by okay(K) is the track's soulful foundation, the fuzzed out, lo-fi quality of it echoing his recent New York EP. It's a mellow mood-setter that balances between emotion and total chill, which is reflected in the lyrics, breathlessly, nonchalantly recited in a stream of hefty layering and warp that puts a cloudy distance between listener and emotive lines.

Things like, "Nike kicks are in the dirt / I don't ever wna work / What are Nikes even worth" as well as "She gon show up where I live / please don't show up where I live" summon a kind of nihilism, ceasing to care but without the outward doom that goes with it. Even when okay(K) mentions "demons at my neck" they are merely "gross", the same sense of humour that also has him rhyming "lazy" with "Lays-y" (the adjective describing Fritos obviously).

The (mostly) seven syllable lines of the track's midsection give every statement a natural pause, staccato space for the lyrics to breathe, to be thought about, furthering that pensive mood; hearing his actual recorded voice in the gloop and crunch of the layered vocal effects becomes poignant after a while.

All set to a clanking, slow shuffle of a beat, okay(K) succinctly explained the horizontal R&B feels of 'Frank Ocean' when we asked about the track over email: "the ocean be flowing man," he wrote to us. "im just tryna flow like the ocean, to be frank." It's a moment of self reflection, as witnessed through a prism of lyrical versatility and skewed chill.

okay(K) Internet Presence ☟

Saturday, 22 June 2019



Space and colour get dribbled around the court like basketballs in karyme's 'Backward Thoughts', a gap in the fence of doziness and warm grass. Chords like the panting of a cosmic dog zoom in before warping away in a woozy procession punctuated by pummelling kicks. This double-tap rapid beat, the scratchy worn pastel tones in the wheeze of synth, adds to the cartoonish frame of 'Backyard Thoughts'. As if that wasn't enough, karyme throws jazzy chiming progressions for optimal haphazard lounge feeling. Part uobtrusive, part mindfully scattered: perfect for the nebulous thoughts and cloudwatching of a lawnside pause.

  • πŸ”” 'Backyard Thoughts' is taken from karyme's freshly released Backyard Thoughts EP. You can stream it on Bandcamp. The coordinated and clashing artwork was created by Daryosh.
  • πŸ”” The Backyard Thoughts EP arrives after Full Cream, an album of squidgy grooves and diagonal beats released by karyme in April 2019.

karyme Internet Presence ☟

Thursday, 20 June 2019



With gleams of jazz in the wide arms-resting-on-leather-sofa chords, 'Surface Tension' is an excercise in late-night fluidity, a warmly lit space inhabited by mid-century furniture and people murmuring in dark corners, touching each others' elbows and looking into each others' eyes. More than just in the sultry tropicalia groove that swims in the music, Tomos provides a clipped croon, setting the precedent with lines like "I guess there's more to us than being friends."

As the South-East London (via West Wales) musicmaker tells us, however, it was in a "YouTube binge" that 'Surface Tension' was born.

"As a lyric writing technique I often randomly write down lists of words influenced by what I've seen, heard and been interested in that day," he admits. "A couple of years ago, I had been researching the adhesive properties of water, but also found myself watching that trending video by Tatia Piliva, FIRST KISS (the one with load of ‘strangers’ kissing upon meeting for the first time)."

Loop crafted, lyric book in front of him, 'Surface Tension' was born - and then forgotten about, only to be found two years later and be magicked into some brand new music. Tomos carves this pearlescent soundscape not only of watery surface tension, complete with submerged-yet-surfacing synths splashy in their wah-wah-esque repetition, but also the surface tension of a convivial meeting between two people, their underlying desires concealed but bubbling like the agitated, heat-warped percussion shot through the track—and which it ends with, like a hearbeat.

Tomos Internet Presence ☟
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There's a lot to like about 'Alien Monster' by R.Black. The synths twisting and melding with each other in the background definitely effuse a sense of, well, alien-ness and that's the first thing: this unobtrusive instrumental that, without getting in the way of what Houston-based, Jamaica-born musicmaker is doing with his voice, still conjures this bizarre backdrop of retro UFOs and pixellated, far-off galaxies.

Vocally, and lyrically, 'Alien Monster' is a gem. There's this hushed, rapid rap to begin with – featuring the no-bullshit of "I'm young and reckless / I'll snatch your breakfast" – and later on this slower, playground rhyme kinda rhythm, that kicks off with "Lover not a fighter / not a coward I'm a writer."

With this and other references to the literal craft of rapping, the skill of hopping on the beat, contending with nouns and verbs, R.Black has some originality that makes listening to his bars almost like hearing an alien man from outer space, which he mentions throughout. Combine with prime useage of reverb on some lines, brazen inexplicable yells and yelps for ad-libs, and you get a feel for the unique hype that is at work in 'Alien Monster'.

  • πŸ”” Get to R.Black's SoundCloud to hear more (since 'Alien Monster' the tracks have mostly been produced by others and don't have the same soul, personal touch or DIY charm present in this track).

R.Black Internet Presence ☟

Thursday, 18 April 2019



By the trundling false-starts, erratic thuds and empty scrawls of shining synth and vocal sample etchings, it certainly does seem that in 'Shanghai' Swiss producer Feldermelder achieved the goal of reflecting a late night walk through a deserted area of the Chinese megacity. Based on a visual recording of that experience ("an attempt to capture nightly nothingness," wrote Feldermelder), 'Shanghai' glitches, squawks and buzzes throughout the track, a noisy, gleaming morsel with a mood ripe for remixing.

On that remix is long-time friend, Beijing-based producer and sound designer Shao. "It was last summer, on a rainy morning, I was drinking on the rooftop beside my studio," Shao remembers. "I got the message from Manuel [Oberholz, aka Feldermelder], asking me to remix a track that he did in China."


Creating the remix was as simple as stripping the original track bare and then processing them with "some effects pedals, some delays" whilst adding a drum beat that matched the atmosphere.

"I just followed the feeling and the atmosphere and made a relaxing track," Shao, formerly known as Dead J, explains simply. Though focused recently on techno-flavoured production (see Shao's Doppler Shift Pt. 1), he decided to change things up for this remix.

The result is unrelaxing. A doomful doppelganger of the original, a doped dirge of surging drama like an undersea cave, a mirror to the mire of irony of lonely deserted streets in a huge city, crushing isolation told in drawn out growls of distortion and warped glitter.

And the beat, a sparse march of organic thuds, gives it a feeling of techno deconstructed, four-to-the-floor-minus-two, simultaneously creating – along with the teasing rise and fall of the synth waves – a sense of something about to teeter over the edge.

  • πŸ”” This Shao remix of 'Shanghai' arrives ahead of Feldermelder's The Sound Of Remixes, out tomorrow 19th April on Zurich label -OUS. This release sees three tracks from the Swiss artist's 2018 The Sound Of EP. You can pre-order the remix EP here.

Feldermelder Internet Presence ☟
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Shao Internet Presence ☟
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Thursday, 11 April 2019



With its delicious blooping bumps of bass drum and pastoral soft sounds rising in thumb-daubed pastel arpeggios, 'Salty' is a mist of sea air, a coastal breeze, an idyll of freshness swirling around gnarled trees; it is also urgent, a bubbling of thoughts, gradually turning into something that feels almost panicked.

"hurry up" KAZU sings towards the end, whilst sounds become like short breaths, spots of light in your vision, being unsure where to look anymore. Cells vibrating like molecules.

That KAZU is Kazu Makino, co-founder of rock Blonde Redhead, and 'Salty' - so named for its cryptic and statemently loveable hook, "i bet you're salty" - is the first track to be taken from her upcoming debut solo album, Adult Baby.

With credits on the single a starter-pack rollerdex of names ranging from Brazilian percussionist Mauro Refosco to composing legend Ryuichi Sakamoto, the instrumental for 'Salty' is unquestionable. Plumes of lightness, trinkets of percussion, analogue loops and dives that breathe extra vitality into the track. Though KAZU, with her expressionist lyrics and distinctive, rounded tones, emotes enough for multiple lifetimes throughout.

  • πŸ”” 'Salty' is taken from the upcoming debut from KAZU, Adult Baby, which is set for release on Kazu Makino's brand new imprint of the same name later this year. It will be distributed by !K7, by the way.
  • πŸ”” The video for 'Salty', a concept of Makino herself, was directed, filmed and edited by Paride Ambrogi and Jonas Ranner in Elba, Italy.

KAZU Internet Presence ☟



The elastic instruments of 'Motion' is something that gives it the dynamic energy that absorbs you and then bounces you away, the rubber sway of the stumbling-down-a-corridor synths, an intoxicated sound that feels like a twirling mind. Not just the flapping synth, but the zooming acceleration and then dead stops of the bass give it this kineticism. It's a minimalist, leftfield approach to R&B, as producer Poles explains over email.

"I knew I wanted my music to continue in that direction as opposed to the more poppy, future bass music I was writing," he writes. "'Motion' draws from my history in hip-hop, but incorporates my love of odd, bass-hitting electronic music. The fusion gave us something really unique."

Not just the plasma synths, nor the taffy heft of the bass, or the punchball training thuds of bass drum that pummel throughout, but the twisted musicbox clinks, the phantomatic chords that squeak across the glossy surface of 'Motion' like a disjointed dancer, add to that definitively unconventional approach to musicmaking.

A slice of normality comes at the end, the piano, damaged and dusty, like the sun rising after club sojourns, the haze of alcohol exorcising itself from the spirit; Poles' hazy full stop to vocalist Soft Jaw's pitch shifted croons that gave this track its sultry, nocturnal character.

  • πŸ”” Download and stream the Poles and Soft Jaw collaboration 'Motion' via your fav platform.

Soft Jaw Internet Presence ☟

poles Internet Presence ☟

Friday, 5 April 2019


If you're in the northern hemisphere, and you're not too close to the equator, spring is probably happening. To celebrate the once more springness of the world, we've enlisted the musicmaking entity that is TSUKI to create our 30th guest mix. Specifically, it's the producer half, Levi Chappell, who has composed this mix.

"My interest in music probably began when I started playing piano at around 9 or 10 years old, after discovering an old Casio keyboard out in the garage," Chappell tells me via email. He then met Chanlar Rose (the other half of TSUKI) in school. "We played music together for a while before ultimately deciding to form TSUKI."

Referencing Shlohmo and Baths music and the way they used "field recordings, distorted samples, or strained falsettos recorded in bathrooms," Chappell admits a considerable impact on the writing and recording process for the duo.

Boasting a Baths track as its finale, this half-an-hour journey of sounds features all the delicacy you'd expect of spring. It conjures time lapses of blossom opening and shoots erupting through the surface of dirt not long rid of frost, with samples of birds singing, water flowing, spring rains and children playing all featuring heavily throughout.

"The mix is an amalgamation of songs that have been near and dear to me over the past few years," Chappell tells us about the mix. "I tried to include the tracks that I've found myself returning repeatedly, stuff that I've found innovative or inspiring.

"I'm hoping it helps these songs find some fresh ears so others can enjoy them as much as I have."

00:00 Falls – Short Field 2
02:οΌ”οΌ“ Ikotu – Swirl
07:οΌ’οΌ™ Fla.mingo – How to Deal With Homesickness
09.οΌ’οΌ– Tekvision – Lament
οΌ‘οΌ‘:οΌ”οΌ– Ojmacoj x Brother Mynor – Drew Barrymore Watches Saturday Morning Cartoons
οΌ‘οΌ”:06 Weird Inside – ba2 (unreleased)
οΌ‘οΌ•:οΌ’οΌ– OUSKA – Gonzo
οΌ‘οΌ˜:οΌ‘οΌ‘ ?????
οΌ’οΌ‘:οΌ’οΌ” Lumes – Take Me Back
οΌ’οΌ’:οΌ”οΌ™ B.Visible – Disney (Persian Empire Remix) [Demo Version]
οΌ’οΌ”:07 Nongoma – Desire (Persian Empire Remix)
οΌ’οΌ—:07 Baths – Indoorsy

TSUKI Internet Presence ☟

Tuesday, 2 April 2019



Fuzzy, outright violent, decayed and broken in instrumental terms, 'Eurisko' by CLAWS AI is a self-destruction of sound. In a good way. The drums tumble angular and warped in the background as the chorus spins a howling refrain, "I know you're sleeping around..."

But rather than this uncontrollable reaction to infidelity, the true intent behind 'Eurisko' matches the scorching jagged nightmare of its distorted storm of guitars, the harshness and noise of it all, the full-bodied thump of bass guitar.

"Eurisko draws upon this lingering, maybe personal feeling of instability and chaos in the air," the musicmaker explains to us via email. "Both in my own life and in the world."

Mentioning war explicitly in his response, CLAWS AI helps make sense of the "bullets flying around" line in the chorus. This concept also very much gives grounding to the wild gravel and grit of the track — its noise in a word. Though 'Eurisko' isn't all noise. Liquid chorus FX add grunge warp to the pre-chorus, whilst the whole coda of the track feels like a psychedelic sway into death: a wounded soldier lamenting their involvement.

It's a reflection that, "maybe through catharsis" he tells me, "each of us can win the spiritual war within ourselves and avoid an actual war." An anti-war anthem told with the personal tint of expressionist lyrics and post-punk trauma.

  • πŸ”” Stream the song and examine the lyrics of 'Eurisko' by CLAWS AI over on SoundCloud.


CLAWS AI Internet Presence ☟


For a song that has a glistening, sunny feel to it, all the deliciously recorded acoustic guitar organic string feeling – so close it's in your ear, played right next to you – the drums gently rapping out a woodshed craft workshop rhythm in trebling splendour and woody leaves-after-rain clarity; for all its harmony, there is disharmony in TOLEDO's 'Bath'. It's much more than typical lo-fi indie pop — for one thing, it's not lo-fi.

The lyrics, sung warm and layered, joyous, tell a different story. The first line raises the curtain: "So / lose my mind and lose my hold / nowhere to run to." There's the refraining imagery of "red in my eyes." And then there is the effectiveness of contrast between the chorus' last line and the second verse's first:

... Such fun to be young and alive

I / saw the doctor when I was nine
For all the anger

The words in speak of losing control, instability – and not just a moment of it, but a history, a tendency – whilst the music itself, with its rose-tinted gleaming guitar, exists as a simultaneous remedy, the feel of a diary entry when something is out of your system maybe: a way to exorcise emotion painting it with this comforting, nostalgic sound. Or else it is the haze of help and healthy thinking in light of looking back on darker days.

And ushering us into and out of the Brooklyn duo's reminiscence is a drum machine; rather than organic, real drums we have this cutesy, childlike detachment, the tumbling of miniature building blocks into painful recollections.

  • πŸ”” You may purchase 'Bath' by TOLEDO's for as little as $1 on Bandcamp. You can also stream it there as many times as you like.

TOLEDO Internet Presence ☟
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RPG meets jazz in 'Atlantico', a sandswept soundscape from Madrid-founded, Paris-based band Quartetto Minimo. With a guitar melody – composed one summer in southern France – that summons a kind of intrepid videogame castle exploration and sparkling harp that harks back to faraway dark-wood-panelled rooms fable baroque (let's talk E.M.M.A's 'Mindmaze') a time and place, nowhere concrete, gets a bold, impressionistic illustration.

"It's funny that you said it sounds like baroque," guitar player Nicolas Arzimanoglou Mas tells us over email, "because for the past 2 years the bass player and I have actually been playing baroque music, with different instruments and bands of course."

Combine it with organic rough textured bass that feels noir and fantasy, and drums that give it pace and intrigue, and there is excitement, the urgency of jazz merging this into the battle music, penultimate level themes; in terms of real videogame comparisons, it sounds much like the 'Gerudo Valley' theme from Zelda: Ocarina of Time.

The medieval-summoning chamber aesthetics with kinetic energy of improvisation and quick tempo gives it that VGM dynamism. A new jazz release that crosses boundaries and conjures a world away from the traditional; it's chamber jazz.

  • πŸ”” This track is taken from the album of the same name, Atlantico by Quartetto Minimo. Feel free to stream and/or download it on Bandcamp.

Quartetto Minimo Internet Presence ☟
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Thursday, 28 March 2019


Northampton, UK rapper and producer slowthai has announced his debut album, Nothing Great About Britain (scheduled 17th May), by unleashing a new track called 'Gorgeous'. On a bed of sparkling piano samples, swaggering saxophones and classic yesteryear vocal chops laying down a timeless canvas, slowthai spits bars in that slurring tone of voice he's known for, half growling, half speaking.

Specifically it's a coming of age tune, fitting the vintage lo-fi samples and the temporal clunking clock tick-tocking percussion of the beat, with lyrics that reference being "drunk on vodka" as much as childhood pursuits that have defined a generation of British people: "been the same since Gameboys and stickfights, stabilised push bikes, few shinies / jump off the pushbike, Tony jacked my Yu-Gi-Oh cards..."

Life for many English kids growing up is this running around your estate, your road, your block, whatever it was, on a bike, showing off your trading cards, having them "jacked" (that's stolen btw), all that. And then it seems that before you know it, vodka is the inevitable next stage; bottles of alcohol find their pride of place in your bedroom, next to the trading cards of just a couple of summer before, now veneered with aerosol-scented dust.

  • πŸ”” 'Gorgeous' is taken from the slowthai – real name Tyron Frampton – debut album Nothing Great About Britain, out on True Panther Records/Method Records, 17th May 2019. He calls it "basically my experience of growing up."
  • πŸ”” slowthai Nothing Great About Britain tracklist ::
    1. Nothing Great About Britain
    2. Doorman
    3. Dead Leaves
    4. Gorgeous
    5. Crack
    6. Grow Up feat. Jaykae
    7. Inglorious feat. Skepta
    8. Toaster
    9. Peace of Mind
    10. Missing
    11. Northampton's Child

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Wednesday, 27 March 2019


In the video for Nagoya-based band CHAI's 'Curly Adventure', curly hair literally becomes synonymous with adventure; the protagonist as animated by LA artist Sean Solomon daydreams the lyrics of the four-piece's thunderous ode to curly hair.

"Long long time ago, my hair is troubling me…" the song begins with singer Mana spinning these hair-based lyrics composed by bassist (and art director) Yuuki.

With the fizzing-crash of the drums alongside a galloping funk of bass, plasma watery synth shoots through this track distorted and fluid all at the same time, a storm of summer-summoning sound; half '90s-remembered sparkly sun-soaked jam, half explosive reaction against the slump of frustration.

Lines in CHAI's song like "curly hair: that is amazing" and "curly hair means being yourself" can resonate with anyone having to alter themselves for the sake of uniformity. And this is reflected in Solomon's video for 'Curly Adventure', with its carefree spirit, popping colours, winding roads and undersea treasure hunts.

Watch it below, obviously.

  • πŸ”” 'Curly Adventure' is taken from CHAI's 2019 album Punk.

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The feel of being bed-bound with the window open and nature spills in. Bright mornings. Birds chirping like book ends wrap the sweetness of the song in pastoral, the synth even feeling leafy and organic in its rhythmic sparrow-sized chords, pastel-coloured trembling with minute vibrato.

'Oxygen' by TSUKI – a duo comprising Chanlar Rose and Levi Chappell (and one of the first songs they wrote together back in 2015) – is part natural idyll, part honest convalescence, an atmosphere conjured by Chanlar's vocals. The lyrics, referencing lungs, oxygen, souls turning black, lacking strength to lend, were written by Chanlar "while she was recovering from a fairly invasive surgery," Levi tells us.

"She was out for a few months and the lyrics are a reflection of the strain that that the entire experience ended up putting on her personal relationships."

The gravity of those lyrics – the way Chanlar's voice vaults into the air, how words seem almost spit out, how light distortion touches them – contrasts with the candy-coated instrumental, resonating only with the thump and heft of the beat, comparatively brutal compared to the delicacy of the cute synths. The birdsong, by the end, is crushed as the song, instead of fading out, decays.

  • πŸ”” You can stream TSUKI's 'Oxygen' variously, but it's on Spotify too.
  • πŸ”” It doesn't feature 'Oxygen', but if you liked this you should probably take a listen to TSUKI's debut album, Severance Package.


TSUKI Internet Presence ☟

Saturday, 23 March 2019



Referencing the sitcom Frasier in its deceptively lolious Morrissey-length song title, this morsel of music from Toronto-based producer lil birth control is a simple one, but there's a evocative atmosphere at work here. Though set to intense flurries of overdriven kicks, and the metallic crack of a snare bursting the air later on, 'IF I SEE ANY TOSSED SALAD IN THESE SCRAMBLED EGGS I AM GONNA GO FULL CRANE' is a partition of softness.

"i really put my heart into this lil shit," the musicmaker told us, "and im very glad that it shows."

Glancing gleams of half-sparkle, half-music box synth play a childlike three-note melody throughout, summoning a sort of happysadness. Not necessarily in its simplicity but with the synth that is cocktailed with it, the swirling phasing haze of synth that washes behind it as the backdrop.

And its in this childhood-summoning atmosphere that it actually resembles parts of Jim Guthrie's Sword & Sworcery OST. Maybe 'Little Furnace' or the 'Cabin Music' from the actual game itself (both with a similar sort of basic delicacy in its nursery rhyme major key melodies). Differently to that, however, lil birth control provides a destruction of that carefree atmosphere with the intrusion of crazed kicks—how everyday life is super effective against dreams and nostalgia.

  • πŸ”” Listen to more lil birth control over on SoundCloud.

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Thursday, 21 March 2019


There's something wholly Super Mario 64 about this track from French musicmaker Trudge. But not at first. It begins with a glittering portal—a shoesqueak synth arpeggio that grades into an intense sparkle; a wormhole that spills out into a void where rapid hammering kicks and hi-hats tick urgently and cymbals clash valvelike. All for a minal, mechanical intensity that summons the same sort of drama that begins the theme for 'Hazy Maze Cave' in Super Mario 64.

Rockfalls of cutting rave breakbeats gleam in 'From Sorrow To Darkness' as the kick continues its syncopated thump beneath all the fresh crash of the percussion. Airy synth chords also summon that Mario level: a breathy, breezy sound that feels at once grand and dilapidated simultaneously. From the orchestra at his disposal, Trudge adds and subtracts with compositional attention to detail. Atmospheric and cave-like.

By the end of the track, the musicmaker has conjured the portal again—the arpeggio swirling and growing stormcloudic above and widening into the transportative sheen that it was in the beginning. A dynamic, transforming journey, hefty panic attack flavours of rave rumbles and the dark bump of the kick taking us through the caverns and trailing tunnels of a mind in tumult, lit with the pale gloam of ancient synth.

  • πŸ”” 'From Sorrow To Darkness' by Trudge, a dungeon-like exploration of the mind in techno symphony, is taken from his upcoming 100 EP. This is set for release via 1Ø Pills Mate on 19th April. You may, if you like, pre-order it in vinyl form or digitally from Bandcamp.

Trudge Internet Presence ☟

Tuesday, 19 March 2019



The piano in 'After Words' explodes on a heavy, storm-summoning chord, and continues dramatic and grounded in the impending trauma at the heart of it. It's the feeling of having tenderness turned on its head, sinking sadly on the sofa; a warm and homely environment where ghosts seep in through the walls and cling to your skin.

High notes tumble and ache, like thoughts on stilts wading through the heaviness of your head - the fine, disturbed lines of London musicmaker uah's dim washed canvas. That fogged feel is nudged along by the gradual gale of phasing ambience that settles into the track, soon made the tormented dominance of it all, piano - all semblance of mindful control fading.

"I wrote 'After Words' when I was trying to make sense of the difficult times a friend was facing," uah types. "I didn't know whether to be stoic or sad or just be true to the trepidation I felt inside. Recording it helped me decide to be all of those, and more."

Starting low and crawling beneath the surface of the detached mist, trails of synth slowly crack the surface, pushed up with the aid of analogue crushing sub, bubbles glooping from the depths. Unsteadily the trails begin, like something reanimated trying to find its feet, until the treble hits a crescendo; the synth gallops in streams, cutting, the phasing surge of ambience like a heavy cloud getting lower.

As 'After Words' fades, the camera focused on the warmly lit room zooms out in time, showing the window, other windows, the building - night.

uah Internet Presence ☟

Monday, 18 March 2019


Mr Little Jeans' original 'Forgetter' inhabits a dark, swaying world entrenched in sub-bass, sometimes pillowed with sun dappled breeziness. But completely destructing this darkness, turning on the light, and transporting it from the gloomy forest of the original, Che hops on a remix of 'Forgetter'.

Now psychedelic, the track cuts a groove with suburban by-the-lake bass that pops and lingers and stumbles happily along; sparkling liquid guitars fall slow motion from one chord to the next with sloppy lustre; just part of the original vocals survive, simmered thin and garbled into each other.

It's a whole new plane of existence, one into which we're inducted and ejected from with cosmic tunnels of thick synth. Mystery and pyschedlia mix in the semi-idyll of Che's remix, propelled by the gentle thump of a beat, well away from the trap dilution and shaded inflections of the original 'Forgetter'

  • πŸ”” There's actually a free download of Che's weed-soaked remix of 'Forgetter' by Mr Little Jeans, which is nice.
  • πŸ”” And you should check out Shuco by Che, an album he released with Astro Nautico last year. You can listen to it and everything else on Bandcamp.

Che Internet Presence ☟

Mr Little Jeans Internet Presence ☟
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Monday, 11 March 2019


Described as an "adventure to a long-forgotten space station/arcade orbiting the now-vacated planet once known as Earth," the two morsels of music that comprise R23X's latest release – Terra_II – act like a soundtrack to an imaginary videogame. They set the mood, induct you seamlessly into the world at the heart of this project.

The two parts to this single represent of the adventure to the eponymous space station/arcade: Terra_II. Partly summoning the steady pace of a space shuttle journey with its swaying march of layered beats, this track for the most part feels like walking around an abandoned space station.

There are the hollow synth boops that summon this sense of forlorn loneliness, the emptiness of robots with nothing to do—something once great rediscovered. But there's a cheerfulness to the coldness in the track: the two-chord vox sounds, the cut sample in the background, the videogame noises throughout that still erupt from the forgotten arcade machines.

But the last part of the track changes tack. Following a tiny break, where you feel the silence of creeping through a dripping tunnel to a new area on the station, the airy, analogue chords (conjuring the soundtrack of Final Fantasy VII) change dramatically. A now brooding, maybe more monstrous atmosphere hides in the hallways.

Part of the "mystery" at the heart of Terra_II as a whole.

'G.A.I.A. Probe' represents the (perhaps) discovery of something that might shed light on how the "thought-to-be destroyed space station has thrived and adapted in ways thought previously impossible."

It's just 54 seconds of sound, but for the duration of its series of rising, textured synth chords it shifts between beauty and decay, discovery and devastation. Synth vox suggests a hint of eerie humanity, no matter how long ago; the clinking bleeps ping a simple melody of inevitable but untimely shutdown.

Equal parts delicate and laden with the possibilities of space, shades of human emotion mingle with overtones of the sad uselessness of prodigious machines mired in neglect. In Terra_II, R23X marries with vivid colour and detail a scene of moody mystery with that strange lightness and gravity with which videogames consume and enthrall.

  • πŸ”” Part of a project called EarthCade, created by R23X (Marc Junker) and Drew Wise (game developer, artist), which originally began as a game idea: "an exploration of bright and colourful animal characters who built a a self-sufficient arcade (The EarthCade) where everyone is welcome and included."

    Junker explains a little further. "We started the project with the idea of donating a portion of profits from every item sold to various charities (VOKRA, WCS, etc) that may prompt the audience (or their kids) to discuss/think about ways they can change/contribute for a better future on Earth!"

  • πŸ”” Terra_II is available now on Yetee Records, an offshoot of The Yetee, purveyor of art, apparel and more, where both Junker and Wise are both art directors. You can purchase Terrace_II on Bandcamp, if you like. And you can find more EarthCade products here.
  • πŸ”” We first stumbled across R23X in 2014. Check out the track that introduced us to R23X, 'Dry Summer'.

R23X Internet Presence ☟
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Wednesday, 30 January 2019


Chaos and calm collide in this calamitous track, a dirge of insular sunbeam hope, a decree for celebration burned at the edges and wet from acid rain. Shlohmo's 'THE END' basically works out for the best.

It's a tale of different influences, from the doom of the clanging metallic guitars and their twinkling-in-the-basement arpeggios – feeling a little like Brand New's most despondent moments – to the vital trap thump of the beat with its ripped paper handclaps and ticking white noise hi-hats, it is a beast of everything; thin synths even herald better things with their shining, future bass builds—before, of course, the guitars tear them to shreds.

Dusty pianos tumble decayed in the background, spook house chimes trickle by warped and chopped with radiation shimmer, whilst bass rumbles lo-fi in the distance. As far as a track charting apocalyptic mess goes, Shlohmo's is one of consideration, playing your favourite trap heroes as the windows melt; nonchalance in the face of extinction.

Shlohmo Internet Presence ☟
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Tuesday, 22 January 2019


With its popping pinprick starry synths setting things off to a steady sojourn on a spacey backdrop, London producer Kantakin is all about slow-moving majesty. Shifting from sparkling icy-lonesome to gradual cosmic menace, this track is all about gradual dynamics, a tilting gradient of power.

At the same time, 'Parallel Universe' is a ship adrift. The irregular arepeggios and brooding, looming clouds and rails of sound, much like John Carpenter's 1979 Halloween theme, summon a sense of horror. Though mirroring that heavier, earthy grounding, closer to Kantakin's subject matter is the title screen theme of Super Metroid, a haunting number soaked in galactic ghastliness. The stepping synth melody feels like we are practically looking over Samus' shoulder: tension is the word.

'Parallel Universe' has this sharp minimalism. But it also feels gigantic. Pumping sub-bass and growling modulated synths rising up highlight the drama of a cruiser on a backdrop of nothingness—and all the epic proportions and unimaginable human impact involved.

  • πŸ”” Like what you hear? Kantakin's 'Parallel Universe' can be downloaded from Bandcamp if you feel like it.
  • πŸ”” Kantakin also creates music for film, TV, etc. under real name Paola Cantachin.

Kantakin Internet Presence ☟



The kicks bubble and boom in Shigeto's homage to DIY dancefloors, 'Fight Club'. True to its name, this track flexes and thumps with pugilistic vigour. From the clean edges and simplistic space-filled beginnings of it all, right to the cavalcade of cauterised breakbeat clackings and harsh destroyed snares, the energy ramps up from boxing studio warm up to spun out sparring.

But it's not all the flurry of hits that keeps you on your toes as you listen. There's the smoke-filled, dystopian sheen of it all (much like Shigeto's 2013 'Detroit Part 1'), a darkened room and strobes feeling, rust and concrete toppling below the cyber hedonism of it all. This is what a club in Final Fantasy VII's Midgar Slums should sound like, the bouncing bass of the area's soundtrack mixing with the same sort of airy, scorched-out synth chords that play in the 'Infiltrating Shinra' theme later in the game—aged and ageless.

Needless to say, it summons this same soundscape, matching it for tone and mood with the funk jollity and downtrodden darkness of it all, mechanical beats and threatening space in a brutalist, otherworldly conjuring.

  • πŸ”” 'Fight Club' is taken from the ghostly-released Weighted EP, which arrived unto the world on 28th September 2018. You may stream and purchase this from Shigeto's Bandcamp.

Shigeto Internet Presence ☟
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