Monoceros, A Glorious Afternoon [Imaginary Nonexistent Records -INR014CDR, 2010]

December 14th, 2010 Comments off

The well-known artist Monoceros, producer of high-grade electronic music and releases on such prestigious labels such as Expanding Records and Fueradeserie run imaginary Nonexistent Records. The mini-album (8 tracks) in question ‘A Glorious Afternoon’ is a direct continuation of Monoceros’ earlier work. It is warm, melodic and extremely well produced and in my mind, for being a 2010 release, ‘A Glorious Afternoon’ is exceptional, simply because it is completely devoid of ‘genre’ nervousness surrounding too many of the electronically inclined releases this year. It does not fall into any given newly invented category, on the contrary it is just good electronic music and I guess, in the end, that is what Imaginary Nonexistent Records is all about. Download or CDR is available at the inrecs website.

Neuron, Planet Fendor, [Imaginary Nonexistent Records – SMON004CDR, 2010]

December 14th, 2010 Comments off

No question about it, this is an excellent piece of music! Deep, bassfilled crystalline soundscapes, beautiful in a mesmerising and melancholic way. I feel compelled to say something more about the bass, it’s excellent handled and nothing less than hypnotising. Depending on your set-up you might go for the headphones (if your neighbours are away this does not apply you and especially not if you go by the name of Jaques Lueder).

Imaginary Nonexistent Records goes for the Drone and those so in style! With three simultaneous and somewhat connected releases, but nevertheless by three different artists. Neuron’s opening track ‘Olace’ has to be commented on since is one of the best tracks I’ve heard in some time and the album Planet Fendor in its entirety is highly recommended. However, it also comes with a caution, watch your bassbins or maybe your headphones, excellent low frequencies present on this one! Very, very, well done! Download or CDR available at the inrecs website.

Inigo Kennedy, Magnificent Spaces [Asymmetric – ASY MP3 019, 2010]

November 18th, 2010 Comments off

‘Magnificent Spaces’ is the nineteenth MP3 release on Inigo Kennedy’s Asymmetric label and the first to be written about here at resurface. The EP consists of five exceedingly well-produced electronic pieces and dear I say epic techno tracks.

In sequential order; starting with ‘Muck Shelf’, a real treat incorporating forward-moving (UK flavoured) beats, a dirty filtered bass and a lovely melody lingering in the background, simply put an excellent track.

‘Laconic’ steps closer to the purist techno realm with it’s big sounding drum and analogue haunting melody, it also contains some decidedly broken sounds all to great effect and all engineered to set the dance on fire.

‘Roundabound’ is broken; a relentless synthesised loop is fused with scattered beats and offbeat handclap creating a chaotic as well as hypnotising setting. What’s needed is an open-minded dance floor. ‘Roundabound’ ends as it starts, which makes perfect sense when you come to think about it.

‘Triangle’ brings things back on the techno track. It’s a beautiful, majestic and strongly built track with beats straight as autobahn, and yet still filled with groove and excellent chosen sounds. As good as they come.

The fifth and last track entitled ‘Mood’ concludes ‘Magnificent Spaces’, the beats are not as prominent and they are accompanied by warm lushes of atmospheric sounds. The Americana electronic legacy is clearly audible. ‘Mood’ is a perfect example of the emotional strength of repetition in music as well as a vivid reminder of just how good techno can be.

‘Magnificent Spaces’ is available as free download from asymmetric and so are the previous eighteen releases! The fact that music of this quality is available for free and the actual state of the post-digital World is something that will not be covered in this particular text.

Amorph, Midsummer [Boltfish Recordings – BOLTDIGI016, 2010]

November 18th, 2010 Comments off

Amorph’s debut album entitled ‘Etats d’esprit’ was released on Boltfish in 2007. This four track EP ‘Midsummer’ sees Amorph return in form on the very same label. There’re four tracks of delightful breakbeats of the nicest persuasion. It’s been stated here before and it can very well be stated again, good music does not have to belong to a musical journalist’s newest invented sub-genre to be good. Hey, at the end of the day, good music just has to fulfil the requirement of being good! The ‘Midsummer’ EP is all that and more and it is what you’re looking for, it’s a breakbeat treat. The track ‘Sunrise’ is the ultimate testament, come 2010 and you get perfectly laid down beats, flawless production and execution and triggering an automatic replay, what can I say, but, that it’s an excellent track! I just wish, imagine that I actually would under any circumstance hear this track being played out, once, and no that’s not going to happen anytime in the near future, and frankly that is just a shame…

Seba – Session at Secret Operations HQ

November 24th, 2009 Comments off

This story starts with the notion of youth and the promise of an eternal, ever accelerating evolution of increasingly complex beats, unlimited and eternal bass and last but not least the so very, very bright future that should rightfully belong to all youth! As well as the deep and undiluted belief in the power of art, music and last but not least bass.

The Seba set posted here at represent all of the above and also signifies the meaning of, or rather was is meant when applying the term “soldier” in a drum and bass context, it means nothing else but serving the drum and bass. And they constitute the key musical elements according to Lee Scratch Perry and I for one agree and I always have, ask somebody. A soldier serves the drum and bass with loyaly and without hesitation. And let’s not forget the future part…

It is claimed that the current year is 2009 and if that is actually true it would seem that quite some time has passed since 1995 when this particular journey in question took off *, Seba’s that is, one of a select few that is a living, breathing musical hero, relentlessly pursuing a musical vision, no matter what the obstacles may be, belonging to the group of individulas that all are artists in the very meaning of the word.

I feel that it is my obligation to pay tribute to some of the real artists in the World, so I say a big thank you to: Ludvig, Krazy, Jesper, Inigo, Hecq, Mileue, Seba, Icarus, Proem, Auer, Lufth, Alaska, Paradox, Coltrane, Mehldau, Pole, Phonem, Funckarma, Somatic Responses, Autechre, Beefcake, Mary J Blige, Jodeci, Group Home, KDD, Fanu, Rother, Finlow, Tonikom, Fabian, Descartés and many many more… again thank you!

Now proceed and listen to the fresh mix, straight from the Secret Operations HQ brought to you by the one and only Seba.

* Seba started producing music well before 1995, but for the sake of the argument and my text I'm choosing to stick to 95'. If for no other reason I have some really great musical and personal memories from 1995.

Seba – Session at Secret Operations HQ mix hosted by —

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Seba, Return to Forever [Combination Records – CORE060, 2008]

July 6th, 2008 Comments off

seba_return_to_foreverIt is completed and ready for release (AUG2008) “Return To Forever” is the long awaited debut album by the prolific drum’n’bass producer known as Seba. After a long string of twelve-inch releases on various labels his discography contains labels known and respected all over the World including his very own Secret Operations.

In short the time has come to add another chapter to Seba’s musical journey. “External Reality” in its album version displays to the fullest the level of beats programming expertise held by Seba. The deep, heavy bass and heavenly beats are the perfect starting point for the “Return to Forever” album.

Read more…

Various Artists, One Point Two [Rednetic – RN012, 2007]

August 10th, 2007 Comments off

one_point_twoOne Point Two is the most natural name for the sequel of the first Rednetic compilation One Point (you guessed it) One that saw the light if day in 2004 and was the second release ever on this not that old thriving yet successful label. There’s little point in denying it this compilation is very good and if it has any shortcomings they’re surely down to musical preferences and nothing else. The opening track Queasy by affiliated artist Mint of Boltfish fame and it’s the perfect lush opening for a 14-track session of contemporary electronics. Queasy strikes me as quite an unusual track for being Mint masterminding it somewhat less nice than his regular output. Boc Scadet’s She Spoke of the Sky is another emotive high-tech production by Boc Scadet and it’s not hard to understand how this track ended up on the One Point Two compilation. Polestar’s Retro Future is brilliant with warm lush sounds submerging the sonic picture as they are contrasted with crisp beats and plenty of forward motion a simply seminal piece of music. Zainetica’s Awaken track is classic Zainetica material and the bubbly bassline would grace any open-minded dance floor and the musical references are as vast as is the undeniable talent held by this artist. Cheju’s Hubl holds all the characteristics of a Cheju track apart from the bassline that is decidedly more 80′ like than I’ve ever heard before. Not necessarily a bad thing, but it definitely a different approach for being Cheju. Vizier of Damascus’ Murmurs is anything and everything you would expect from Vizier of Damascus a great ambient track with an edge and the rhythmic work on Murmurs is excellent. However the track’s playing time is too short, weighing in at 03:12 it is much too short. The eleventh track Harajuku is an interesting collaboration between Joseph Auer and household name Lackluster. Actually it seems to be a remix by the ever so productive Lackluster, so I guess it should read something like Joseph Auer Harajuku (Lackluster Pitchmix). And as it turns out it was originally named Harajuku Rain and is taken from his Kyoto Tokyo 2001 EP released in 2004 on the very same label. In the remix Lackluster is opting for the big bass and the slow beats in this summery roller keep the bass heavy and the beats kind of hollow, ya’ll feelin’ it? Joseph Auer’s Probes off Io has all the qualities and the unmistakable sounds of any J.Auer track. It is a solid slab of Americana being served by the artist. Complete with lush strings and forward moving beats in perfect harmony. Superb production and another piece of fine music signed J.Auer. Inigo Kennedy’s Faraway Towns has a melancholy struck melody, crisp beats and massive amounts of bass. It is an unforgiving slightly distorted bassline that is a monster. In Faraway Towns you get the sweet with the rough in a brilliant way. You’ve been warned so watch those bassbins! Sunosis’ Leap is the last track on the compilation and it is taken from the lovely Warmed EP released (and reviewed) on Rednetic earlier this year. In conclusion: One Point Two – More Digital Listening Music from Rednetic (as the full title reads) is a definite show of force by Rednetic and a welcome as it is refreshing collection of tracks that rely on electronics rather than acoustic instruments in what seems to be an unstoppable wave of acoustic releases the past year or so. After all this is the E-desert!

Ludvig Elblaus, Flannel Poet [ELECTRONIC DESERT – ED003, 2007]

August 10th, 2007 Comments off

ed003_webbScandinavian producer Ludvig Elblaus explores the possibilities of setting machines free to create their own music without human intervention judging by his titles, he probably gets them to make them up as well. But on a hands-on, upbeat track such as “Hitta hem”, whose stiff forward momentum and manic irregularities recall such John Baker classics as “The Chase”, such worries are quickly dispersed. The nervous, distended pulsations on “Rymd” and the slowly evolving convulsions of closer “Baltice” both suggest a strong feel for a beat and sure sense of timing, even when his powers of description may have deserted him.

Electronica Reviewed by Ken Hollings, THE WIRE 279 MAY 2007

Selectone, Unearthed [Ressonus Records – RESS-01, 2006]

August 10th, 2007 Comments off

ress-01_coverWhat you see before you is the long overdue text about this severally limited first release for the Czech label Ressonus and in addition it is also the debut album for recording artist Selectone. There are nine tracks of highly personal music starting off with the devoid of beats and quite ambient Lavra. Thereafter continuing along the musical ideas of Selectone. Let it be said straight away that it is an intriguing release that in large parts set in drone/soundscape mode with the odd abusive exception. For example the distorted technoish beats of track number five Geo. However, the effect if any that was intended is probably not the desired one, because the rest of the album really feels like a collection of songs quite capable of standing on their own and in the same time creating something larger than merely the sum of their parts. There are several interesting concepts on this album, the rough sample techniques, broken and repetitive elements literally creating new structures. The collage technique is refreshing in its upfrontness. The ninth and last track Treatment contains large samples from a frightening film that was based on a frightening novel (the title is a combination of two designators one for time keeping and the other is eatable if peeled) and as it would seem some three decades later has become a pretty frightening song as well… The lo-fi setting of Selectone’s music is a consequence of his methods and it would seem to be as a deliberate move on his part as it is effective. Selectone has added another chapter to the story about individual sounding productions. The fact that the packaging is good even tough it might be just a tad impractical just adds to the overall positive feeling towards this release. Finally I would like to congratulate Ressonus on the first release and wish continued success with the label.

Cheju, Foil [U-Cover – U-CDM05, 2007]

August 10th, 2007 Comments off

cheju_foilFoil is Cheju’s contribution to the lovely, but hard to administer 3-inch series by U-cover. The five tracks on the EP is very much a Cheju affair with excellent melodies and distinct warmness to as well production as sound. And his exploration of acoustic aid such as guitars is seemingly continued in this release. The fifth track Nettle has an exercise in call-response of sort and is by the sound of things entirely based on plucking nylon guitar strings. Cheju’s Foil is the fifth instalment in the series and now counting in at 15 (JUL 2007), affiliates Zainetica and Joseph Auer has joined the ranks. And it would appear to be label co-owner Mint that holds the first release spot in the same camp given his 3rd place in the consecutive release order. Other contributors are Joel Tammik and Ontayso. The packaging and production is ace and Cheju is in really good company with this release.

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