• Discovering ’70s-’80s African and Caribbean boogie with Julien Dyne

    By | October 25, 2018

    Featuring highlife, soca, bubblegum, and Afro-disco.

    Though Julien Dyne may be known for past collaborations with the likes of Theo Parrish, Steve Spacek, Andreya Triana and Lord Echo, his new solo Soundway LP Teal, strikes a zippier tone.

    As Dyne explains: “My new album is mostly uptempo, influenced heavily by the more boogie-based African records, as well as classic disco and funk.

    I don’t aim, nor am I able to, convincingly copy or replicate vintage music styles. But for me, I feel this is liberating – as a result what you get on Teal is my own idiosyncratic, homespun amalgam of these influences.

    The songs in this mix are a combination of tracks I regularly play out in DJ sets as well as music I enjoy listening to at home.”

    For the occasion Dyne delivered a 16-track, “percussive, soulful journey mainly through ’70s-’80s Africa and the Caribbean, occasionally straying into jazz, New York post-punk and future-soul”, which traverses from Jackie McLean and Chantal Curtis to ESG as well as two of his own productions. Listen to the mix, and find out more about 4 of the tracks below.


    Gasper Lawal
    ‘Ajomasé’
    (Cap Records, 1980)

    Buy

    This Gasper Lawal record sits in a space of its own: you’ll find dubbed out, cosmic sounds alongside 12-string guitars and African percussion, as well as a phone-ringing sample which gets people looking around every time. Recorded in London and featuring a cast of talented Nigerian musicians. I love every moment of this amazing record. The title track of the album translates to: “we all have to do it together”. I can get with that.


    Kamazu
    ‘Trains Stop-Dub’ 7”)
    (Bemba Records, 1988)

    Buy

    Every track is a winner on this South African gem. It’s safe to say there is a reason people are going crazy over South African records at the moment – lots of lovely Yamaha DX7 keyboards, often featuring double-time drums that work well with house and disco tempo records.


    Jackie McLean & Michael Carvin
    Antiquity
    (Inner City Records, 1976)

    Buy

    Great mix of raw drum and percussive energy with wailing alto saxophone. I’m a sucker for a vocal chant, and tempo-wise this is a good one to slot next to a disco jam and see what happens!


    ESG
    ‘ESG’ 12”
    99 Records, 1981

    Buy

    Emerald, sapphire and gold! This record is unparalleled, both sonically and in its attitude – the sounds are just so tough. The Scroggins sisters really epitomise that intersection of disco, rap and punk that encapsulated the sound of NYC in the early ’80s.


    Tracklist

    1. Gasper Lawal – ‘Ajomasé’ –  Ajomasé
    2. Gyedu-Blay Ambolley – ‘Burkina Faso’ – “Bend Down Low” Party Time
    3. Carl and Carol – ‘Yonge Street Jam’ – Ole Time Calypso
    4. Kamazu – ‘Push In Push Out’ – Trains Stop – Dub
    5. Nomuntu & Chimora – ‘Rico Dance Dub’ – Being Bitchy Is My Kind of Fun
    6. Teddy Davis – ‘Let Me Love You’ – Tity Connection / Let Me Love You
    7. Julien Dyne – ‘Design’ – Teal
    8. Akissi Christine Bella – ‘Akolou Ndjadia’ – Akissi Christine Bella
    9. Paul McCartney – ‘Secret Friend’ – Temporary Secretary
    10. Terry Mackson – ‘Love Letter to Johny’ – Weekend Love
    11. Lord Julien – ‘Shades’ – Shades / Tennis
    12. Jackie McLean & Michael Carvin – ‘De I Comahlee Ah’ – Antiquity
    13. Chantal Curtis – ‘Get Another Love’ – Get Another Love
    14. ESG – ‘Moody’ – ESG
    15. Julien Dyne – ‘YouYou’ – Teal
    16. Mike Umoh – ‘Do It’ – Dreaming


    Teal is out now on Soundway Records.

  • Julien Dyne draws on afro-beat and soulful house for new album Teal on Soundway Records

    By | September 21, 2018

    A new solo album from the Theo Parrish and Steve Spacek collaborator.

    Soundway Records has announced the release of Julien Dyne’s new album Teal, a joyful exploration of afro-influenced percussive house and electronic soul.

    Dyne, whose CV includes collaborations with the likes of Theo Parrish, Steve Spacek, Andreya Triana and Lord Echo, has been tipped by Gilles Peterson and Moodymann among others, and strikes a more up-tempo tone with Teal, which you can sample on first single ‘Copernicus’ below:

    The record features a range of artists including fellow New Zealander Mara TK, long term band-mate Ladi6, Fat Freddy’s Drop’s trumpeter Toby Laing, Australian vocalist Tim Guy and jazz luminaries Jonathan Crayford and John Bell.

    Julien Dyne’s Teal will be released on 19th October. Click here to pre-order a copy and check out the artwork below.

    Tracklist:

    A1. Design
    A2. YouYou
    B1. Hours
    B2. Like Glue
    B3. P.F Mogul
    C1. Copernicus
    C2. What You Say
    C3. Hot Shoe
    D1. Steady
    D2. Teal
    D3. Follow You Round

    Photo: Garth Badger

  • VF Mix 146: Onda de Amor by Millos Kaiser

    By | August 2, 2018

    Brazilian synth and boogie oddities from the ’80s and early ’90s.

    Some compilations enshrine regional canons, others punch above their weight, making grand claims for wilfully obscure selections. Just occasionally though, a compilation comes along that knows it stands on the fringes of greatness, but just lets the music do the talking.

    So it is with Soundway’s most recent collection Onda De Amor: Synthesized Brazilian Hits That Never Were (1984-94), compiled by one half of Selvagem Millos Kaiser. Overlooked, cast aside or just never really considered commercially viable, the comp proves that sometimes synths do get better with age, whether on Vania Bastos’ silky cover of Sade’s ‘Sweetest Taboo’ or the Casio horn section on chipmunk funk outlier ‘Toque Tambor’.

    To accompany the compilation, Kaiser has unearthed sixteen more mis-hits and playlist off-cuts for this hour-long mix. Consider this Onda De Amor 2.0, the second part to a story we hope will run and run.


    Tracklist:

    1. Evandro Terra – Dim Dim Dom Dom
    2. Strike – Polícia
    3. Band’Axé – Menino do Pelô (Millos Kaiser Edit)
    4. Reflexu’s – Kangala (Festa das Bebidas)
    5. Rosana Mendez & Grupo Veneno – Reague
    6. DJ Raffa – Amazonia
    7. The Brother’s Rap – Rap’agode (Remix)
    8. Damas do Rap – Sonho Real
    9. Rick & Nando – Cidade
    10. Cassia Eller – Eles (Instrumental Remix)
    11. Villa Box – Break de Rua (Versão Longa)
    12. Sarajane – Por Que Você (Millos Kaiser Edit)
    13. Os Abelhudos – Contos de Escola (Millos Kaiser Edit)
    14. Os Magrellos – Deixe O Ritmo Controlar
    15. Nanda Rossi – Livre Pra Voar (Millos Kaiser Edit)
    16. Athalyba Man – Ficar de Mal

    Catch Millos DJ through August:

    August 3rd – w/Selvagem @ Concrete (Paris)
    August 4th – w/Selvagem @ Dekmantel (Amsterdam)
    August 11th @ Good Block (London)
    August 12th @ Giant Steps – Houghton Festival (Norfolk)
    August 17th @ Pavillon d’Été (Bordeaux)
    August 18th @ Le Sucre (Lyon)

  • Listen to our favourite new music in the VF radio show

    By | July 17, 2018

    Brazilian synth boogie, sun-soaked ambience and obscure Afro-funk.

    The Vinyl Factory’s monthly Soho Radio show returned this week, with Editor Anton Spice at the helm for two hours of new music and reissues that have been making waves in the office this month.

    Bookended by Soundway Records’ wonderful comp of Brazilian synth oddities, this month’s selection takes in new music from Lonnie Holley, the artist behind VF album of 2013, ambient electronics on Music From Memory and Rvng Intl., mbira improvisations from Zimbabwe’s Stella Chiweshe and acoustic delights from The Innocence Mission and Gwenifer Raymond.

    We’ve also got a handful of new VF releases, with music from Joakim’s Studio Venezia Sessions, Theaster Gates’ label project Black Madonna Press and a stone-cold Róisín Murphy banger, produced by house maestro Maurice Fulton.

    Listen in and check out the track list below.

    Tracklist:

    Vania Bastos – Tabu (Soundway)
    Spain v Spain – Radiate (DISLO)
    Tirzah – Gladly (Domino)
    Lonnie Holley – I Woke Up In A Fucked-Up America (Jagjaguwar)
    The Innocence Square – Green Bus (Bella Union)
    Joakim – Trust (Preey, USA) (The Vinyl Factory)
    Emanative – Dawn Child (Sunrise) (Jazzman)
    Theaster Gates & Black Monks of The Mississippi – Brother From Another Planet (The Vinyl Factory)
    Stella Chiweshe – Mayaya (Parts 1 & 2) (Glitterbeat)
    Havana Cultura: ¡Súbelo, Cuba! – Diáspora (Feat. Negro WadPro) (Brownswood)
    Tangents – Swells Under Tito (Temporary Residence Limited)
    Gwenifer Raymond – Sometimes There’s Blood (Tompkins Square)
    Orlando ‘Cachaíto’ López – Tumbao No. 5 (Para Charles Mingus) (World Circuit)
    Jimi Tenor – Mysteria (Philophon)
    Hanna – Cosmic Sleep (Flumo)
    Róisín Murphy – Plaything (The Vinyl Factory)
    Dego & Kaidi – Treasure Beach (Sound Signature)
    Mandingo Brass – Everything Looks Better From A Distance (BBE)
    Tunde Mabadu – Alabosi (Mr Bongo)
    Soothsayers – Tradition (Wah Wah 45s)
    Orqestra de Nubes – Tiempo de Espera (Music From Memory)
    Tashi and Yoshi Wada – Fanfare (Rvng Intl.)
    Anacy Arcanjo – Toque Tambor (Soundway records)

  • The 10 best new vinyl releases this week (9th July)

    By | July 9, 2018

    Brazil’s forgotten synth jams, brassy London jazz and dreamy ambient frequencies

    Could it really be… coming… home? Probably not, but any of these beauties certainly could. Ready to be handed over by an elderly gentleman, and held aloft above your turntable, our pick of the week’s best vinyl releases begins with the kind of horn-heavy jazz that would put the England brass band out to pasture.

    Picking things up in the second half, there’s new music from the versatile and expansive mind of Laurel Halo, a brace of crucial reissues from Scotland’s essential introverts Boards of Canada and Jesus & Mary Chain, tender folk variations from The Innocence Mission, and a set of slick-back Brazilian synth-pop oddities that will have you doing the “funky Neymar” all over the kitchen floor.

    Scroll down for our definitive across-the-board rundown of the week’s new vinyl releases as selected by The Vinyl Factory’s Chris Summers, Patrick Ryder and James Hammond with help from Norman Records. 5 singles and 5 LPs every 7 days that are unmissable additions to any collection.


    Singles


    Don’t Problem

    DP EP

    (Don’t Problem)

    Listen / Buy

    Don’t Problem announce their arrival with 6-tracks of brassy-as-fuck, heavy funk grooves from South London. Some of the capital’s finest horn blowers unite on a deep and dastardly debut that takes the pulse of a city whirling in jazz trance into new realms of sonic consciousness. While tracks like ‘Jacques’ and ‘Judo Chop’ pack a festival punch, the street-wise arrangements of ‘Wavy’ and ‘Rangoon’ elevate DP EP above your dirge-like colliery band fare. Instead, fans of The Comet Is Coming, or Malcolm Catto’s psych-outfit Heliocentrics should take note. Just don’t call them a brass band.


    Gnork

    ‘Magic Arp’

    (Magicwire)

    Listen / Buy

    Hammering the breakbeat house since 2013, it’s only right that Hungarian hero Gnork gets a hefty slice of the limelight in the current club climate. His second release on Lone’s mega Magicwire after ‘No Gravity’ in 2016, ‘Magic Arp’ is vintage tackle from the new school champ, effortlessly joining the dots between dreamy early ’90s house, the LTJ Bukem school of drum’n’bass chill and the after-party cool of an early Warp release.


    Laurel Halo

    Raw Silk Uncut Wood

    (Latency)

    Listen / Buy

    Taking a step back from the distinctive vocal work that made Dust one of last year’s finest examples of experimental pop, this latest EP presents six instrumentals as further proof of Laurel Halo’s truly expansive musical imagination. Fresh off recent film scoring work, Raw Silk Uncut Wood launches into more ambient realms, with tracks that strike a delicate electro-acoustic balance throughout. Head straight to the title track if you’re seeking something for your ears to truly get lost in – a perfectly paced, ten minute glide through dreamy frequencies.


    Boards Of Canada

    Hi-Scores

    (Skam)

    Listen / Buy

    A timely repress of one of the Boards’ best ever releases, Hi-Scores comes in at six tracks deep and distills their sound perfectly, from the stunning title track to the hot funk of ‘Nlogax’ via the breaks of ‘June 9th’. Remastered from the original DAT tapes, packing a poster and some minor tweaks to the artwork, this is an example of a reissue done right.


    The Cool Greenhouse

    ‘London

    (Market Square)

    Listen / Buy

    One of those 7″s that you can easily imagine John Peel playing back in the day. As if LCD Soundsystem came from Swanage and utilised the Normal’s lo-fi electronic production techniques, this is really odd and unique stuff.


    LPs


    Christopher Rau

    F.M.E Hustle

    (Money $ex)

    Listen / Buy

    Smallville associate and deep house technician Christopher Rau joins the ranks of Max Graef’s Money $ex with an eleven track double LP of concentric grooves, dub techno pressure and nuanced broken beat. Less grainy than the usual Money $ex material, but no less soulful, F.M.E Hustle shimmies along that fine line between purpose built club chug and home listening heat, giving you everything you want from a house long player.


    Various Artists

    Onda De Amor: Synthesized Brazilian Hits That Never Were (1984-94)

    (Soundway)

    Listen / Buy

    Brazilian DJ Millos Kaiser is surfing a wave of love and it’s heading your way. The Selvagem selector jumps on board for a synthesised scorcher on Soundway Records that makes a virtue of obscurity to provide a new home for some of the country’s grooviest synth-pop orphans. And unlike other compilations that seek to re-frame overlooked music as ‘definitive’ with a special kind of historical revisionism often afforded to reissue labels, Onda De Amor makes no such claims for its oddball line-up. Instead, the music stands up for itself as we’re treated to a diverse and colourful line-up of radio-play misfits, strutting their funky stuff across 16 joyous tracks. Expect cachaça-soaked drum programming, beach-body-built horn stabs, sunset synth soul and a cover so deep it makes ‘The Sweetest Taboo’ sound like it was conceived in Portuguese. If Outro Tempo had a goofy, more sociable half-brother, Onda De Amor would be it.


    Lolina

    The Smoke

    (Self-released)

    Listen / Buy

    After a few delays Inga Copeland’s self-released vinyl edition of her latest LP The Smoke is making its way out to the world. Four releases into her Lolina moniker, this one comes as an aural oddity like no other, with the songs here feeling dismantled, and reassembled in line with an idiosyncratic language of their own making – scrappy and frayed at first, only to appear more precise and uncannily deliberate as the record draws you in. Lyrically, emotionally and rhythmically speaking this one avoids the direct and retains a sense of the illusive throughout. One of those uncommon records that has the power to recalibrate your ear and the very notion of song craft.


    The Jesus and Mary Chain

    21 Singles

    (Rhino)

    Listen / Buy

    Sixteen years after the original CD release of this compilation and we finally get a double LP that sounds like nothing else. The Reid brothers sure can write a tune – from the screaming feedback of debut ‘Upside Down’ right through to the pop explosion of ‘Far Gone And Out’ and beyond. Riffs, hooks, melodies, noise and a shit load of soul – The J.A.M.C. have it all.


    The Innocence Mission

    Sun On The Square

    (Bella Union)

    Listen / Buy

    The Innocence Mission have been a long running under-the-radar group from Pennsylvania, but with Sufjan Stevens declaring his fandom and Bella Union releasing this latest record, here’s hoping a lot more more people get a chance to investigate these lovely, intimate, acoustic songs and the unique vocal talent of Karen Peris.

  • Soundway collects under-the-radar Brazilian synth hits on new compilation

    By | May 25, 2018

    Samba boogie, synth wave and electro oddities from ’80s and ’90s Brazil.

    Globe-trotting label Soundway Records touches down in Brazil for the first time this summer with the release of Onda De Amor, charting the “synthesized Brazilian hits that never were” on gatefold double vinyl.

    Read more: How Brazil is reclaiming its record culture

    Released in July, the compilation covers a ten year period between ’84 and ’94 of Brazilian music not yet extensively explored by reissue labels, and follows Music From Memory’s superb Outro Tempo last year, which exposed the country’s rich history of synthesized pop to a wider audience for the first time.

    Onda De Amor is compiled by DJ Millos Kaiser, one half of Brazilian duo Selvagem, who says, “the idea is to do justice to these songs. Songs that combine all the right ingredients that should have put them on radio playlists when I was growing up, or at least in the case of more adventurous DJs.”

    Onda De Amor: Synthesized Brazilian Hits That Never Were (1984​-​94) is out on 6th July via Soundway Records. Pre-order it here and check out Dodô Da Bahia & As Virgens De Porto Seguro’s ‘Africamerica’ above for an idea of what you can expect.

    Tracklist:

    1.Ricardo Bomba – Você Vai Se Lembrar
    2.Vânia Bastos – Tabu (The Sweetest Taboo)
    3. Rosana Mendes & Grupo Veneno – Reague
    4. Grupo Controle Digital – A Festa É Nossa
    5. Villa Box – Break De Rua (Versão Longa)
    6. Batista Junior – Cheira
    7.Dado Brazzawilly – Saramandaia
    8. Anacy Arcanjo – Toque Tambor
    9. Fogo Baiano – O Fogo Do Sol
    10.Dodô Da Bahia & As Virgens De Porto Seguro – Africamerica 05:00
    11.Via Negromonte – Love Is All
    12. Electric Boogies – Electric Boogies
    13. Os Abelhudos – Contos De Escola (Millos Kaiser Edit)
    14. Nanda Rossi – Livre Pra Voar (Millos Kaiser Edit)
    15. André Melo – Onda De Amor
    16. Região Abissal – Feminina Mulher (Instrumental)

  • The story of South Africa’s ’80s bubblegum soul scene

    By | March 9, 2018

    Listen to our 30-minute podcast with Soundway Records.

    Released on triple vinyl today, Soundway Records’ new compilation Gumba Fire: Bubblegum Soul & Synth Boogie in 1980s South Africa charts the country’s explosive and subversive dance floor disco scene.

    Read next: How ’80s Nigeria embraced funk and boogie

    Selected by Miles Cleret and DJ Okapi, the compilation is something of a follow-up to the label’s superb Doin’ It In Lagos collection last year, and shines a light on a scene getting increasing airplay from adventurous DJs around the world.

    Recorded at a recent VF Soho Radio show, this 30-minute interview with Soundway Records’ Alice Whittington digs into that scene in more detail, touching on some of its major artists, and the stories behind their meteoric rise to the height of South African pop stardom.

    Order a copy here.

    Podcast tracklist:

    Stimela – Mind Games
    Ntombi Ndaba – Do You Trust Amajita?
    Ozila – Wola Wola
    Ashiko – Gumba Fire (Madlakadlaka)

  • Explore the bubblegum soul sound of ’80s South Africa in our latest radio show

    By | January 31, 2018

    Soundway Records in the studio.

    This month, VF Editor Anton Spice is joined by Soundway Records label manager Alice Whittington to get the lowdown on their new compilation Gumba Fire: Bubblegum Soul & Synth Boogie in 1980s South Africa, which charts the country’s explosive and addictive dance floor disco scene.

    Selected by Miles Cleret and DJ Okapi, the compilation is something of a follow-up to the label’s superb Doin’ It In Lagos collection last year, and shines a light on a scene getting increasing airplay from adventurous DJs around the world.

    From the origins of the name, to the political resonance of the scene and its key protagonists, hear our interview with Whittington as part of a new segment on the show called Reissue Corner, alongside a selection of our favourite new releases and reissues doing the rounds at VF HQ in January.


    Tracklist:

    Mashrou’ Leila – Djinn (Jonny Rock remix) (Hamam House)
    Lex Amor – Praises (Touching Bass)
    Kokoroko – Abusey Junction (Brownswood)
    Basa Basa – Homowo (Vintage Voudou)
    K15 – Sunbeams (Eglo)

    Stimela – Mind Games (Soundway)
    Ntombi Ndaba – Do You Trust Amajita? (Soundway)
    Ozila – Wola Wola (Soundway)
    Ashiko – Gumba Fire (Madlakadlaka) (Soundway)

    Hugh Masekela – Ashiko (Casablanca)
    Space Ghost – Colour Waves (Tartelet)
    DJ Koze – Seeing Aliens (Pampa)
    Peggy Gou – It Makes You Forget (Ninja Tune)
    Shams Dinn – Hedi Bled Noum (Smiling C)
    DJ Taye – Trippin’ (Hyperdub)
    Jeremy Deller x Adrian Sherwood – Freetail Dub (The Vinyl Factory)
    James Blake – If The Car Beside You Moves Ahead (Polydor)
    Leslie Winer & Jay Glass Dubs – Woodshedded (Bokeh Versions)
    Enrico Intra – Insieme (Dualismo Sound)

  • South African ’80s bubblegum soul and synth boogie collected in new Soundway comp

    By | January 19, 2018

    Extremely funky cuts from the Rainbow Nation.

    A new 3xLP compilation from Soundway Records is shining a light on the sounds of Sound Africa’s 1980s pop music scene, widely known as bubblegum.

    Read next: Doing it in Lagos: How ’80s Nigeria embraced funk and boogie

    Gumba Fire‘s 18 tracks highlight the country’s musical movements between “the ’70s where American-influenced jazz, funk and soul mixed with local Mbaqanga sounds, and the ’90s when kwaito and house music ruled the dance floors of urban South Africa,” shares Soundway.

    The name gumba fire means ‘a hot party’, and comes from the phrase ‘gumba gumba’, a term for the old spacegram radios that broadcast music into South Africa’s townships and villages.

    A hot party indeed, Gumba Fire has been curated Miles Cleret (Soundway) and DJ Okapi (Afrosynth Records), and is a sister release of sorts to Soundway’s Doing It in Lagos: Boogie, Pop and Disco compilation, released in late 2016.

    Head here to pre-order a copy ahead of its 9th March release date, listen to its blazing first single – The Survivals’ ‘My Brother’ – and check out the track list below.

    Tracklist

    Side A

    A1. The Survivals – My Brother
    A2. Stimela – Mind Games
    A3. Hot Soul Singers – Hlala Nami

    Side B

    B1. Zoom – Wayawaya
    B2. Ashiko – Gumba Fire (Madlakadlaka)
    B3. Monwa & Sun – Heartbeat

    Side C

    C1. Ntombi Ndaba – Do You Trust Amajita?
    C2. The Black Five – Selallane
    C3. Starlight – Picnicing

    Side D

    D1. Zasha – Hayi Ngodlame
    D2. Joshiba – Gloria *
    D3. Sibela – Africa

    Side E

    E1. Condry Ziqubu – She’s Impossible
    E2. General Peter Maringa – Listen To Me

    Side F

    F1. Zasha – Arrow Dub
    F2. Ozila – Wola Wola

    * NOTE: Joshiba “Gloria” will not be available on the CD version

  • The 10 best vinyl releases this week (11th September)

    By | September 11, 2017

    A 100% album special.

    The beasts have awoken from their summer slumber. As the party season draws to a close, it’s back to business and with so many huge albums to choose from, we’ve opted to break free from the shackles of also presenting five singles to bring you a bumper 10-album edition of our weekly round-up.

    Hold on to your hats, horses and hosiery and hoist yourself into the cockpit for new releases from Mount Kimbie, The National, and Zola Jesus, albums on Sub Pop, RVNG Intl. and Editions Mego, a brace of stunning reissues courtesy of Crammed Discs and Cocktail D’Amore, and the latest reconstructed broken-beat-jazz-gem from South London’s YAM Records.

    Scroll down for our definitive across-the-board rundown of the week’s new vinyl releases as selected by The Vinyl Factory’s Chris Summers, Patrick Ryder and James Hammond with help from Norman Records. 5 singles and 5 LPs every 7 days that are unmissable additions to any collection.


    The National

    Sleep Well Beast

    (4AD)

    Listen / Buy

    The highly anticipated return of The National is the first of this week’s major album releases not to disappoint. Whether or not the oblique reference in the title to the roused beast of W.B. Yeats’ The Second Coming is intentional, this is an album that directly connects with the political upheaval of 2017’s widening gyre. “I don’t understand why people separate love and politics in their art,” singer and lyricist Matt Berninger has said of the album, which is as pre-occupied with the redemptive power of dreams and nightmares as it is with providing answers for real life. Tracks like ‘The System Only Dreams In Total Darkness’ and ‘Walk It Back’ are emblematic of that desire to ride out life’s personal and political tragedies. Unlike Yeats’ though, The National’s beast is dragging a more truthful future along with it.


    Mount Kimbie

    Love What Survives

    (Warp)

    Listen / Buy

    Seven years since Crooks and Lovers, and Mount Kimbie sound like they’re finally settling into a new phase. Coming off the back of two now legendary 12″s for Hotflush, Crooks and Lovers was a fitting culmination for the post-dubstep era that also catapulted the likes of James Blake and Joy O into the wider consciousness. Although 2013’s Cold Spring Fault Less Youth had its moments, it was, in footballing terms, something of a transitional record. Reunited with Blake for two of the stand-out tracks on Love What Survives, Mount Kimbie return with a more fully-formed vision of what could possibly come next. Although starting slowly, the album settles into its propulsive, krautrock meets post-punk stride by the beginning of third track ‘Audition’. The gentle, lilting collab with Micachu is a shimmering highlight on an album that reveals itself as more detailed and considered with every listen.


    Zola Jesus

    Okovi

    (Sacred Bones)

    Listen / Buy

    The Slavic word for ‘shackles’, Okovi hears Zola Jesus throw off hers for a strident and surging new album on Sacred Bones. Exploding into life on ‘Exhumed’, Zola Jesus grapples with darkness and death throughout an album perforated with personal experiences and woven together with fictitious narratives. Sonically, Okovi inhabits a vast and agoraphobic landscape, whether through the operatic grandeur of ‘Ash To Bone’, electronic drone pop of ‘Siphon’ or the cello-balladry of ‘Witness’. An exciting, liberating album.


    Greg Fox

    The Gradual Progression

    (RVNG Intl.)

    Listen / Buy

    As influenced by the spiritual jazz improvisations of Pharoah Sanders and Don Cherry as the technological specifics that allow Fox to trigger tonal palettes through sensors attached to his kit, The Gradual Progression is a deftly syncopated, deeply persuasive album that pushes the envelope for contemporary jazz once more. Incorporating minimalist aspects, as on the Reich-esque ‘My House of Equalizing Predecessors’ or atmospheric surges of ‘Earth Center Possession Stream’, Fox’s The Gradual Progression is a rhythmic tour de force that will leave you utterly discombobulated.


    Msafiri Zawose

    Uhamiaji

    (Soundway)

    Listen / Buy

    Tanzanian gogo music meets electronics on this superb outing by Msafiri Zawose. A jack-in-the-box of live-wire instrumentation and lush fx, tracks like ‘Nosaga’ pop and fizz with slow-mo grace, redolent of Crammed Discs’ most adventurous ’80s outings, while at the other end of the spectrum ‘Kunyemo’ rattles with high-octane drums and a Four Tet-esque propensity to bring euphoric syncopation to the dance floor. With a cover design that nods to cult Afro-electro record Noir et Blanc, expect this to appeal to those on the weirder fringes of the disco and balearic scenes.


    Joe Armon-Jones & Maxwell Owin

    Idiom

    (YAM Records)

    Listen / Buy

    A light-footed six-track EP from the guts of South East London’s jazzy broken beat movement (beginning with the smooth-as-you-like ‘SE Discoteque’), Idiom is the latest release on Peckham record shop YAM’s in-house imprint. Deftly feathering a deep house sensibility with Nubya Garcia’s buoyant saxophone on stand-out track ‘Tanner’s Tango’, Idiom is a poised, late-night record, for fans of Tenderlonious, Hector Plimmer and the rest of the gang.


    Yasuaki Shimizu

    Music For Commercials

    (Crammed Discs)

    Listen / Buy

    Whilst renowned for his Oscar nominated film scores and interpretations of Bach, it was the reissues of Yasuaki Shimizu’s Kakashi and Mariah’s Utaka No Hibi that sparked a renaissance of his ’80s works. With Crammed Discs having initially released his Music for Commercials as part of the intriguing Made to Measure series in 1987, vinyl lovers have another worthy launch point into Shimizu’s sound-world with this reissue. With these pieces recorded for the likes of Seiko, Sharp and Honda, and at a time when a musical approach could be considered a key element in forming a corporate identity, there’s a suitably wide palette of sounds and ideas on display here. An LP that rewards dipping in at any given point to explore a prodigious musical imagination.


    Shit & Shine

    Some Poeple Really Know How To Live

    (Editions Mego)

    Listen / Buy

    He’s back! Craig Clouse returns for his second long player on the ever wonderful Editions Mego and it’s as exceptional as ever. Here he goes even deeper with his own unique brand of twisted dancefloor breaks, booming bass and the always on point choice of hooks, samples and cuts. From the killer sleeve to the tracks within, this is a hard ten out of ten all the way.


    Iury Lech

    Musica Para El Fin De Los Cantos

    (Cocktail D’Amore)

    Listen / Buy

    Taking a break from their frenzied club capers, Berlin’s Cocktail D’Amore see out the summer with a strong contender for reissue of the year, soothing our worries and smoothing our brows with Iury Lech’s sublime Musica Para El Fin De Los Cantos. Originally released on seminal Spanish imprint Hyades Arts in 1990, this sweltering ambient gem has been out of print and nigh on impossible to track down for far too long. Thankfully this official reissue offers one and all the chance to bathe in its warmth and play with an obi – superb!


    Chad VanGaalen

    Light Information

    (Sub Pop)

    Listen / Buy

    Fragile and frantic guitar scree and pop from the man who recorded all those Women albums we loved. Pretty and intricate noise pop with twisted nether zones.

  • Traditional Angolan instrumentals mix with Portuguese electronic sounds on Diron Animal’s Soundway debut

    By | August 4, 2017

    A hot Luanda house party.

    Soundway have announced the release of debut solo album Alone, from Throes + The Shine singer Diron Animal.

    Read more: When Africa met new wave: 10 eclectic records from Petite Noir’s collection

    Born in the country’s capital city of Luanda before moving to Portugal, Alone reflects Animal’s hybrid upbringing, with sped-up, electronic Carnival-style dance frenetics given a traditional Angolan flair.

    Standout ‘Ghetto Ghetto’ is an Afro-Portuguese reggaeton hybrid (in a good way), meanwhile ‘Don’t Stop’ is ’90s house sax turned up to 11 then filtered through a dutty wine machine. Perfect for that 2 am lull at your next Saturday shakedown.

    Pre-order a copy of here ahead of its 13th October 2017 release and listen to first single ‘NCrazy’, featuring South African rapper Spoek Mathambo, below.

  • The 10 best vinyl releases this week (12th June)

    By | June 12, 2017

    Otherworldy musics from Heliocentrics, Can and Max Richter.

    What a week for albums. Pulling no punches we dive straight in with new releases for Soundway’s psych-funk travellers The Heliocentrics, Ostgut Ton’s Berlin techno heavyweight Nick Höppner and Cigarettes After Sex, while Max Richter and Can take care of the reissue business.

    Singles to look out for this week include a deep and meditative new 10″ from Sad City, interpretations of two Mica Levi originals and some filthy hardcore from Glasgow. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.

    Scroll down for our definitive across-the-board rundown of the week’s new vinyl releases as selected by The Vinyl Factory’s Chris Summers, Patrick Ryder and James Hammond with help from Norman Records. 5 singles and 5 LPs every 7 days that are unmissable additions to any collection.


    Singles


    Oliver Coates/ Liza McCarthy

    Micachu- Peace and Drinking Through Harpo Dine

    (Foom)

    Listen / Buy

    With this 7” on Foom we have two new Mica Levi pieces performed by key collaborators Oliver Coates and Liza McCarthy. Levi’s work with Coates is still fresh in our minds owing to last year’s excellent end-of-year-list featuring Remain Calm, and McCarthy’s piano work with Levi garnered an Oscar nomination for the Jackie OST. Coates’ strings take up the A side here and McCarthy’s piano the flipside, with both working beautifully subtle and unimposing atmospheres around the compositions. A concise and inspired collaboration, it’s well worth investigating along with the past works from all involved.


    Lice

    The Human Parasite

    (Big Score)

    Listen / Buy

    Here’s the first ever release on new label Big Score and it comes from Bristol’s Lice, a band definitely on the way up. ‘The Human Parasite’ takes its wonky post punk swagger real well and comes on sounding like a cross between early Pere Ubu and The Fall. There’s not many new bands around as good as this.


    Piyojo

    Live Recordings Restored By Zachte Man

    (Periodica)

    Listen / Buy

    Last time we stepped through the Periodica portal we took a texture mapped tour of the watery world of Riccardo Schiro, shaking a tailfin to the ocean floor funk sounds. PRD04 finds Piyojo soaring through the Stargate, exploring alien rainforests, cybernetic funk and Domenique Dumont style summer-dubbin’ without the faintest shred of sanity intact. Critics will say you can’t dance to it, truth is that they can’t dance to it. This is music for chance takers and backwards dancers of the world.


    Sad City

    Forma

    (Emotional Response / Meda Fury)

    Listen / Buy

    Sad City’s Gary Caruth returns to his Shapes In Formation tapes to pick out three spaced-out meditations whose personalities were too strong for the original LP. Step up ‘Music Removed’, the EP’s slow-bubbling opener, a patchwork of revelatory incantations and gospel inflections that echo across a rainforest canopy, the 2-minute palette-cleanser ‘Patterns’ and the Laraaji-esque poly-rhythmic weave of ‘Vexillations’. That these could be considered ‘outtakes’ is a testament to the breadth and sophistication of Sad City’s recent work.


    Anxiety

    Wild Life

    (La Vida Es Un Mus)

    Listen / Buy

    Horrible Glaswegians Anxiety are used to making a racket but this really ups the growl stakes with a filthy hardcore tour de force that sounds somewhere between My Bloody Valentine’s ‘Feed Me With Your Kiss’ and Jesus Lizard at their nastiest. Not for the faint hearted but feel those cobwebs being blown away.


    LPs


    Can

    The Singles

    (Mute/ Spoon)

    Listen / Buy

    Navigating your way through Can’s recorded works crafts a veritably diverse mind map of genre splicing and twists and turns through downright funkiness, superlative kosmiche and exhilarating avant-rock abandon. This 3LP collection perhaps gives a more direct route into such a nebulous journey by bringing the German group’s singles together in one place – from familiar cuts such as ‘Vitamin C’ to under-heard blasts like ‘Vernal Equinox’ and an amusingly apt version of the ‘Can Can’. As the music and legacy of the group continues to bring new listeners into their wonderfully irregular orbit, this collection serves as a most worthy distillation of one of the most curious and influential discographies of the 20th century.


    Various Artists

    Behind the Counter With Max Richter

    (Rough Trade Shops)

    Listen / Buy

    This is first in a new series from those lovely folks at Rough Trade (the shops, not the label) and here, modern composer Max Richter gets to guess compile a fine selection of tunes that all sit perfectly together. Where else would you find Mogwai, Low and Aphex rubbing shoulders with Philip Glass, Bach and Henry Purcell in such harmony, each working together to make the whole something magical. Limited unmixed green vinyl. Mixed CD. Downloads galore.


    Nick Höppner

    Work

    (Ostgut Ton)

    Listen / Buy

    Though the faltering weather may suggest otherwise, it is in fact summer – the season of high grade house music. Right on cue, Nick Höppner steps into the spotlight with his sophomore LP Work, a nine track selection of extended studio workouts which take the German producer’s typically tracky constructions into more musical territories. From the airy electronica of opening cut ‘All By Themselves’ to the motorik sludge of ‘Three Is A Charm’ the LP trades in rich textures, varied motifs and dynamic rhythms whether the mood is gloomy (‘The Dark Segment’) or optimistic (‘Fly Your Colours’).


    The Heliocentrics

    A World Of Masks

    (Soundway)

    Listen / Buy

    Acolytes of Sun Ra in more than name alone, Malcolm Catto and The Heliocentrics return from far-flung excursions on collaborative albums with Mulatu Astatke, Lloyd Miller and Orlando Julius with a heavy psych-funk LP under their own name. As dedicated to the unpredictability of live recording as they are to the fuzz of analogue gear, the collective have crafted an album-length suite of perpetually expanding worlds, accessible only once you’ve downed their heady elixir of Eastern jazz, dream-like groove and gritty breaks. Look out for our film inside their bunker-like Quatermass Sound Lab studio soon.


    Cigarettes After Sex

    Cigarettes After Sex

    (Partisan Records)

    Listen / Buy

    Glacial and crystalline slow-core from these American dreamers. Perfectly formed slo-mo songs that recall Mazzy Star, Slowdive, Cowboy Junkies and Low. An album of carefully repeating tricks and an emotional heart.

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