This week: industrial experimentalism, spitfire lyricism, ambience and love

By in Features





Essential weekend listening.

This week’s rundown is by VF’s Kelly Doherty and Becky Rogers, alongside contributors Annabelle Van Dort, Emily Hill and James Hammond.

Kali Uchis

Red Moon In Venus



Kali Uchis explores desire and femininity on the beautifully dreamy Red Moon In Venus. Uchis handles romance with a sense of spiritual reverence, unapologetically leaning into the fantastical, all-consuming nature of love. The result is both seductive and healing, whether she’s idolising the object of her affection (“All Mine”) or prioritising love for herself above another (“Deserve Me”). Red Moon In Venus is both hooky yet inquisitive, filled with melodic treats that encourage the listener to reflect upon their own understanding of love.–KD

Kate NV


(RVNG Intl)


Kate NV returns with a fabulous synth pop extravaganza on the influential Brooklyn-based RVNG Intl, a label that has previously released avant-garde delights from Holly Herndon and Craig Leon. WOW is a return to a more formless composition that resembles a sense of childlike wonder and freedom in its freeform sense of wordless expression. Across eleven tracks, Kate finds joy in every corner of her productions, identifying the beauty in the mundane of the everyday and the true delight in moments that we lose in the everyday experience.–EH





The latest offering from the Northampton rapper pairs his trademark boisterousness with deeper introspection. Continuing the exploration of punk, industrial and rap sonics found on his 2019 debut, Nothing Great About Britain, Ugly features production and appearances from indie stalwarts such as Dan Carey and Fontaines D.C.. Riotous and rambunctious, Slowthai’s ever-ebullient presence is enhanced by the album’s more guitar-centric sound. His engaging narratives and spitfire lyricism recall mid-2010s Jamie T with the DIY edginess of King Krule. Whilst Slowthai’s excavation of his own psyche began with 2021’s Tyron, on Ugly, the rapper displays an even greater degree of vulnerability.–AVD

Hako Yamasaki




Returning to the wellspring of creativity within mid-’70s Japanese music, WRWTFWW brings forth Hako Yamasaki’s 1975 debut LP Tobimasu. An under heard gem both within and outside Japan, Tobimasu’s songforms take on the cumulative influence of folk, blues and jazz but end up as more than the sum of their parts with Yamasaki’s powerful voice at the forefront. Recorded when she was only 18 but already able to render melancholy and longing in a way that escaped many of those striving for similarly emotive forms, these songs still lend themselves to the nocturnal listens that she became known for. A fine place to acquaint yourself with her enigmatic work.–JH

Soichi Terada

Asakusa Light Remixes

(Rush Hour)


Soichi Terada, an iconic name in the Japanese music scene, began his career in the late ‘80s and over the last 40 years has become a force to be reckoned with. Asakusa Light is an eleven-track sensation and his 2021 album debut on the Dutch record store/ vinyl outfit Rush Hour. Two years on, the label’s head honcho has commissioned two magnificent remixes, one from US production master Byron the Aquarius, and the other from Alex Attias. Both excursions voyage into the smooth and funky, joyous and jubilant realms. Ideal for a warm dancefloor embrace.–EH

Xiu Xiu

Ignore Grief



Written as “a record of halves” with half reckoning with industrial, and the other leaning on experimental modern classical, Xiu Xiu have moved into the realms of pure horror with Ignore Grief. Unlucky for some, the group’s 13th album plays into the macabre, acting as levity for the group following “staggeringly horrendous experiences” that happened to close friends. Unnerving vocal samples clatter against abrasive industrial convulsions–all merging for an unsettling listen, but an impactful one at that. Ignore Grief is not for the faint-hearted.–BR

Various Artists

S​í​b​í​n Vol. 1



In just under three years, Síbín—a South East London-based audio and visual media collective—has cultivated an impressive back catalogue, showcasing the singular sounds of London’s creative epicentre and beyond. Curated by Síbín label-head Anja Ngozi and Southbank Centre’s Lexy Morvaridi, this new compilation features contributions from contemporary visionaries such as Joe Armon-Jones, Oliver Palfreyman, Fatima and Ngozi herself. Síbín Vol.1 is an enthralling and cohesive listen throughout, full of footwork-inspired breakbeats, spacious flourishes of synth and effortlessly cool bars from the likes of Goya Gumbani and Kofi Stone.  Profits from this compilation will go towards the Black Curriculum and Southwark-based charity Blackfriars Settlement, emphasising the collective’s dedication to an ethos of community and cultural empowerment.–AVD

Leila Sakini & Valentina Magaletti


(Mgaletti Sakini)


A debut release for the duo of Valentina Magaletti & Laila Sakini, Cupo utilises an array of wind, string and percussion instruments but keeps things decidedly uncluttered and unhurried. Avoiding maximalist jumps from timbre to timbre, these 10 movements look for subtle entanglements and a sense of form that values the pair’s improvisational roots. Between sustained notes, distinct phrasings and engagements of both artists’ voices, this one has an alluring sense of timing and emergence that’s easy to get lost in.–JH


One Shade Darker

(Lucky Number)


East Yorkshire’s goth rockers are rallying against the mundanities of rural life with their sophomore EP One Shade Darker. This synth-loving release emanates escapism with every track, putting Priestgate en route to curing their small-town boredom. They’ve cracked the unification of ‘80s new-wave romanticism and late noughties feel-good indie-rock to form this tight mix of melody-heavy art-pop. One Shade Darker is a welcome addition to the melting pot of indie-rock goodness.–BR

Gareth Quinn Redmond

Ar Ais Aris



Irish producer Gareth Quinn Redmond is back on WRWTFWW Records for his third album, Ar Ais Arís. Redmond moves in small spaces, narrowing his focus along a particular narrative like on his 2019 album, the Satoshi Ashikawa-inspired Laistigh Den Ghleo. Ar Ais Arís establishes itself as an ode to the patient power of tape loops. Minimalist ambient is at its best when its scarcity leads to captivation and this release manages to achieve a fine midpoint between cosy ambient comfort and proactive intrigue. One for healing minds and souls.–KD