Our 10 favourite new vinyl releases this week (7th January)

By in Features





Drones, fever dreams, and garden chimes.

This week’s rundown is by VF’s Will Pritchard and Lazlo Rugoff, alongside Emily Hill and James Hammond.

Lena Willikens & Sarah Szczesny feat. Viktoria Wehrmeister and Detlef Weinrich

Phantom Seance Ballett



This is a trip – though with a title like Phantom Seance Ballett, maybe that much is self-evident. Pieced from multi-disciplinary live performances that blend installation with sound and video, these recordings are just a snatch of the full seance, but an immersive, intriguing, occasionally unsettling ride nonetheless. Strap in. – WP

Benitez & Valencia

Impossible Love Songs From Sixties Quito

(Honest Jon’s)


Last year saw Honest Jon’s Records shine a light on the “golden age of Ecuadorean music” with a pair of superlative compilations highlighting the host of local characters that recorded for the Caife label in the 1960s. The romantic harmonies of Benítez and Valencia provided highlights for both compilations, and as such it seems only fair that the label should further their Ecuadorean quest with a more in-depth survey of the duo’s extensive discography. Songs of impossible love and heartache that are rendered in further detail by Bolivar Ortiz’ guitar accompaniment, this fine collection presents Benítez and Valencia’s pasillo style at its most affecting and sentimental. – JH


Trawler Tapes



Simon Shreeve sinks into the undertow on this brooding slate of dense ambient compositions. First offered in two digital editions last summer – following recording sessions on the English south coast – all 12, drone-laden tracks are now slabbed together on thick black wax. Scattered moments of levity pierce the doom, as on ‘T-NET 3’ or ‘H-NET 3’, emphasising the human hand on the tiller. – WP



(Delicate Holland)


Berlin outfit Delicate Records bring forth an exciting collaboration of Canadian minds in the form of Dosis, a combined project of Nap (Isla / Ambien Baby) and ZDBT (1800HaightStreet / Phost). This outing is a solid two-tracker, exploring two different realms of percussion: the A-side a pulsating, futuristic electronic composition touching on all the right elements of drama and getting your senses tingling; while the flip traverses into the dub realm, with a lighter touch an gliding, bouncing energy that frees up space for Naps’ lyrical prowess to shine through. – EH


Blue Hills

(Boomkat Editions | Documenting Sound)


Originally released at the end of 2020, Jonnine’s Blue Hills album gets a welcome vinyl edition this week. Across the album’s nine ethereal tracks Jonnine combines bass guitar and a Mopho synth with electric wind instruments, her own mellow vocals, and garden chimes. As the album ventures into more abstract territory on tracks like ‘Serum 1’, it takes on the qualities of a walking fever dream – disorienting and emotionally evocative in all the right measures. An emotional start to the year. – LR

Felicia Atkinson & Jefre Cantu-Ledesma

Un hiver en plein été

(Shelter Press)


Despite being the duo’s third collaborative LP, Un hiver en plain été is the first time Felicia Atkinson and Jefre Cantu-Ledesma’s electroacoustic explorations were initiated in the same recording space. Forgoing the proxy recording of previous efforts, these compositions bring a shared performative element to their collaged reveries and let melodic fragments lead the way. It proves to be a formula for some deeply engrossing compositions that are at once smooth and soothing yet prickling with texture and detail. – JH

Eliane Radigue

Opus 17

(Alga Marghen)


Opus 17 – Eliane Radigue’s final work created using feedback material – gets a new edition this week courtesy of Alga Marghen. A true maestro of sound, Radigue is able to take what could be purely harsh and disorientating sonics and create five distinct pieces. Moving between the swampy denseness of ‘Number 17’, the haunting undertones of ‘Safari’, and the melancholic drone of ‘Maquette’, Radigue is able to sculpt noise in a way so few others are. – LR

Boy Harsher

Lesser Man (extended version)

(Nude Club Records)


The dark disco of American duo Boy Harsher has been pulsating through sweaty basements since 2013. Their 2014 EP-turned-album Lesser Man captures the imagination, drawing parallels between the icons of post punk past. Here, the pair demonstrate a passion for darker spectrums, with the album’s six tracks incorporating EBM, synth punk, and a fantastic dynamism to the delivery of the spoken word. The reissue, arriving on coloured vinyl edition, features additional versions of underground anthem ‘Pain’, including a cult remix by The Soft Moon. – EH

Majid Soula

Chant Amazigh

(Habibi Funk)


Big grooves abound on this Habibi Funk-delivered selection of songs from Algerian Amazigh artist-activist Majid Soula. There’s driving funk on ‘Win Terram’, shuffling boogie on ‘Tameghra’, and the Francophone flex of ‘Ageruj’ – all wrapped in the light silk of Soula’s delicate vocals. – WP

Los Microwaves

The Birth of Techno

(Dark Entries)


If there’s one thing The Birth of Techno is, it’s certainly not techno. Collecting five studio tracks alongside five live tracks from Los Microwaves’ performance across America, The Birth of Techno is a lovely intro to a little-heard of band. With the group’s stripped back aesthetic and retro synths, there’s an unmistakable ‘80s atmosphere to the record — a throwback in the best way. – LR