• 10 new albums to look out for in November

    By | November 2, 2018

    This month’s wantlist.

    We’ve combed through the pre-orders, promos and release listings so that you don’t have to, showcasing a diverse selection of music from our favourite artists and labels, alongside newcomers we think you need to hear.

    This month’s selection features virtuoso ’70s fusion updates from Mansur Brown and Eli Keszler, Japanese no wave from Eiko Ishibashi and the return of Anderson .Paak. Ever the international affair, the list is completed by music from Venezuela, Scotland, Berlin and Tunisia.


    North Sea Dialect

    Local Guide

    (Numbers)

    Listen / Buy

    Due: 9th November

    Enigmatic Scottish producer North Sea Dialect releases his debut LP Local Guide on Numbers – an atmospheric ode to the “power of the sea.” Filled with the “echoes and surrealness of alienated life” the 10-track album’s release is preceded by three videos of found ocean footage that are well worth checking out, ranging from aquatic Baltasounds to serene sunsets to ‘so terrifying you can’t look away’ storms.


    Lia Mice

    The Sampler As A Time Machine

    (Optimo Music)

    Listen / Buy

    Due: 9th November

    An intriguing new album from producer and instrument designer Lia Mice, The Sampler As A Time Machine evokes Holly Herndon’s dystopian Platform or Laurie Anderson’s Big Science in exploring the tension between the human and the electronic. Exemplified by the use of her self-made instruments, which include a voice-controlled, one-handed violin and a reel-to-reel hacked into a digital tape loop, The Sampler As A Time Machine strikes a compelling balance between cold wave, industrial and synthetic pop.


    Objekt

    Cocoon Crush

    (PAN)

    Listen / Buy

    Due: 9th November

    Objekt returns to PAN following his Objekt #4 EP – one of our favourite 12″s of 2017 – with his second full-length Cocoon. Described as a move away from a “typical dance floor format” the album’s percussive explorations remind of a more sinister, less zany, Errorsmith-esque approach. Deep basement musings, well suited for the melancholic truce of seasons as winter takes hold.


    Deena Abdelwahed

    Khonnar

    (Infiné Music)

    Listen / Buy

    Due: 16th November

    Tunisian producer Deena Abdelwahed fuses acidic electronics with traditional and far-out instrumental experimentations in her debut album, Khonnar. An “untranslatable Tunisian word that evokes the dark, shameful and disturbing side of things” Khonnar paints Arabian visions via the dance floor, and sees Abdelwahed playing everything from Tunisian percussive instrument the bendir (with an ice pick no less) to the trusty 808.


    Powell Tillmans

    Spoken By The Other

    (XL Recordings)

    Listen / Buy

    Due: 16th November

    Turner Prize-winning artist Wolfgang Tillmans and electronic musician Powell team up for their debut record, Spoken By The Other. Its 6 tracks were recorded in Berlin, London and Turin, and workshopped at festivals before transforming into its current iterations. Complete with a finale tune that includes Tillmans knocking out percussion on cutlery and glasses.


    Anderson .Paak

    Oxnard

    (Aftermath Entertainment)

    Listen / Buy

    Due: 16th November

    Yes lawd! Anderson .Paak is back with his third solo record, following Malibu and his collaborative 2017 LP with Knxwldge under the name NxWorries. Produced by Dr. Dre, and featuring Kendrick Lamar, Khadja Bonet, Snoop Dogg and Q-Tip, amongst others, we’re hoping Oxnard sounds more like blazing, Bollywood sampling ‘Bubbling’ than its second single ‘Tints’.


    Eiko Ishibashi

    The Dream My Bones Dream

    (Drag City)

    Listen / Buy

    Due: 16th November

    The sixth album by indefatigable Japanese artist Eiko Ishibashi, The Dream My Bones Dream delves into the unknown personal histories of her father, entwined with Japan’s occupation of Manchuria in the 1940s, and delivered with idiosyncratic theatricality. A Lynchian suitcase drama that delivers some of the multi-disciplinary no wave of downtown NYC through a Tokyo haze.


    Insólito UniVerso

    La Candela del Rio

    (Olindo Records)

    Listen / Buy

    Due: 16th November

    A gorgeous debut from Paris-based Venezuelan outfit Insólito UniVerso, drawing on the country’s psychedelic and spiritual folk traditions – best exemplified by the album’s dream-like opening track ‘Transmutada’, which celebrates the legacy of cult Caracas singer, caricaturist and new age guru Conny Mendez. The full-length follows a 7” on Olindo earlier this year, and is co-produced by The Heliocentric’s Malcolm Catto.


    Eli Keszler

    Stadium

    (Shelter Press)

    Listen / Buy

    Due: 16th November

    Fresh from collaborations with Oneohtrix Point Never and Laurel Halo, percussionist Eli Keszler delivers the intricately woven album Stadium as a 2xLP black vinyl edition this month. Stepping dextrously between free improvisation and composition, Keszler’s crisp syncopations play like stung-out Tony Williams solos that skit restlessly over sparse electronics. Virtuoso throughout, it’s in distorted ballads ‘Lotus Awnings’ and ‘Which Swarms Around It’ where the most compelling moments of Stadium are to be found.


    Mansur Brown

    Shiroi

    (Black Focus)

    Listen / Buy

    Due: 22nd November

    Guitarist Mansur Brown’s much-anticipated debut Shiroi on Kamaal Williams’ Black Focus gets its vinyl release this month. Like Keszler, Brown takes the bombastic legacy of ‘70s jazz fusion and twists it into something personal and deeply introverted. Like eavesdropping on a late-night session, Shiroi is an insight into Brown’s undeniable talent as a guitarist, with subtle touches of Vini Reilly’s ‘Otis’, Blaxploitation funk and Brainfeeder-esque robot jazz providing the unexpected turns throughout.

  • Wolfgang Tillmans and Powell releasing debut EP on limited 12”

    By | October 17, 2018

    Watch the video for first single ‘Feel The Night’.

    Powell Tillmans – a collaborative duo between Turner Prize-winning artist Wolfgang Tillmans and electronic musician Powell – have announced their debut EP called Spoken By The Other, out this November via XL Recordings.

    Its six tracks were recorded in Berlin, London and Turin, and workshopped at festivals during 2017, before evolving into the final EP.

    The duo have also shared a music video for the first single ‘Feel The Night’ which you can watch now:

    “I think a lot of Wolfgang’s work is to do with vulnerability,” shares Powell. “He’s never been afraid to express that, or highlight it, or lift it up as something worth showing.”

    “People have described it as a vulnerable record, and that transparency and honesty is how I felt making it. It made me feel very out of my comfort zone, but I think working with Wolfgang has pushed me to trust myself more.”

    Speaking about the EP’s final track ‘445’, Tillmans explains: “I’m actually acting as a percussionist during this recording: I’m playing with the cutlery and the glasses at a family dinner, so although it sounds like a field recording, it’s also a musical injunction.”

    “We can’t let the haters overtake our lives. We must keep on partying; we must keep on loving, and living.”

    Spoken By The Other is available on limited 12″, with artwork by Anders Clausen.

    Pre-order a copy of the EP here ahead of its 16th November release, check out the cover and track list below.

    Tracklist

    1. Feel the Night                
    2. Tone Me                           
    3. Doucement                          
    4. Speak Out (Version)                   
    5. Rebuilding the Future     
    6. 445  

  • Baba Stiltz joins XL Recordings with Showtime EP

    By | May 16, 2018

    Check out its first video ‘Maze’.

    Swedish producer and Studio Barnhus regular Baba Stiltz has signed to XL Recordings for a new four-track EP.

    Titled Showtime, it’s described by Stiltz in a press release “as a collection of songs recorded over the past couple of years.”

    “They all represent things I’ve been going through, just day to day stuff; travelling, djing, meeting people, being alone a lot, falling in love, parties, hang overs etc,” he shares.

    “‘Showtime’ as a title just means it’s showtime. Before every gig, every day of travel. Always somewhere. Pressure, stress, excitement. Gig-economy self-loathing and megalomania.”

    The EP is released on 8th June, but XL is leading with the video for new track ‘Maze’, which you can watch below:

    Stiltz’s debut album, Total, was released on Studio Barnhus in 2014; since then his goofy brand of house music has also appeared on Unknown To The Unknown, The Trilogy Tapes, Public Possession and Born Free Records.

    Baba Stiltz will also be performing his second ever live show (and first outside of Sweden) in London on 27th June at the Aspers Casino, Stratford – get tickets here.

    Pre-order a copy of the EP here ahead of its 8th June release.

  • The 10 best new vinyl releases this week (26th March)

    By | March 26, 2018

    With Afro-Caribbean rhythms, ethereal nature sounds, and shamanic dance floor machinations.

    Spring has sprung, apparently, and as such there is a decidedly bright and sunny feel to this week’s releases.

    Singles include the mysterious Phaserboys beaming down to earth to make you freak, Hi & Säberhagen’s aquatic dance floor musings with a Japanese twist, and London teen band Sorry channeling the glory days of Nirvana and Hole.

    On the albums front, Sons of Kemet deliver Afro-Caribbean drums with a jazz twist, long term anarcho-punks The Ex return, Ursula Le Guinn teams up with Todd Barton on her last ever recordings, and Belgian rapper Beloji fuses palm-wine guitars with rib shaking beats.

    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

    Anii

    Korzenie
    (Kompakt)

    Listen / Buy

    Released on Kompakt label, this is a physical format debut for London-based Polish producer Ania Iwinska and a case in point to be paying attention to her floor-moving electronica. The Polish word for roots, Korzenie drinks from varying streams within the ever expanding and cross-pollinating realms of techno and house and comes out with a set of bangers, and a promise for more exciting work in the future.


    Phaserboys

    Phaserboys EP
    (Aiwo Rec.)

    Listen / Buy

    The Mulheim homeboys behind the mighty Aiwo rec. keep us moving strangely with the debut release by the mysterious Phaserboys, a mysterious duo sent to earth to make you freak. The A-side rolls along at a leisurely tempo, blurring electro, synth pop and Xanax boogie into two seriously loose grooves while the flip zooms into the peak time, pairing breakbeats and 303s for a shamanic take on the trancey tribalism of the free party scene. If all that wasn’t enough to have you hunting down a copy, this cat comes in this week’s coolest sleeve, ensuring maximum audio-visual excitement.


    Hi & Säberhagen

    Light On Leaves
    (Intergraded)

    Listen / Buy

    Hi & Säberhagen serve up understated beauts for the second release on Midland’s new label Intergraded. A-Side duo ‘Loveless’ and ‘Parachute’ are a hypnotic, minimal aqua techno twosome – the kinds of tracks that reveal themselves with each repeated listen, especially ‘Loveless’ which pairs muted Japanese vocals against a kaleidoscopic build. On the flip things feel subtly sunnier. ‘Light on Leaves’ sends a solar twang of tropical echoes, before closing with the broken-beat echoing swing of ‘Alright’.


    Sorry

    ‘2 Down 2 Dance’
    (Domino)

    Listen / Buy

    New on Domino, this teen London band marry r&b style beats with grunge guitars and melodies which recall the glory days of Nirvana and Hole.


    Wax Chattels

    ‘Stay Disappointed’
    (Captured Tracks)

    Listen / Buy

    Beaming out of New Zealand comes the sound of drums, keys and bass in the shape of Wax Chattels and boy do this lot mean business. After being signed by Flying Nun pretty much on the spot and now being shared with Captured Tracks, Wax Chattels have a damn fine future with an incredible album due in May and a must see live show. It’s dark, it’s fast, it’s heavy, it’s dancey. Like Factory Floor brought up on noise rock.


    LPs


    Ursula K. Le Guin/ Todd Barton

    Music and Poetry of The Kesh
    (Freedom to Spend)

    Listen / Buy

    Inspired by and originally bundled with Ursula K. Le Guin’s 1985 book Always Coming Home, here the original cassette of Music and Poetry of The Kesh gets a much needed vinyl edition, which was overseen by Le Guin before she passed at the age of 88 earlier this year. Rooted in natural sound, ethnomusicology and the sense that multiple folk musics are being channeled, Le Guin’s prodigious imagination keeps this one away from clumsy appropriation, with Todd Barton’s buchla synth and custom made instruments further expanding this vision of the fictional Kesh people into a transportive and extraordinary listen.


    Baloji

    137 Avenue Kaniama
    (Bella Union)

    Listen / Buy

    Indie favourites Bella Union switch things up a touch here, inviting us to enter the audio world of Belgian rapper, producer and musician Baloji. Fusing the palm-wine guitars and intricate rhythms of Africa with system shaking bass and rib rattling beats, Baloji lays down a wonderfully unique foundation for his smooth French flow. The result is a nuanced LP which pulls the past and present into a bold and bright musical future.


    Sons Of Kemet

    Your Queen Is A Reptile

    (Impulse!)

    Listen / Buy

    Saxophonist Shabaka Hutchings follows his work at the helm of all-star Brownswood compilation We Out Here, and A.R.E. Project – one of our favourite 12”s of 2017 – with a new full-length from Sons of Kemet. Lest you forget what they came to do in the two years since the band’s last album, Your Queen Is A Reptile will swiftly remind – bringing jazz influences to hypnotic Afro-Caribbean rhythms through a politically minded lens. Featuring Hutchings alongside a double dose of drums from Tom Skinner and Eddie Hicks and Theon Cross on tuba, the album is fittingly being released on iconic label Impulse! – best known for records by fellow forward-thinking, sonic genre-spanners Alice Coltrane, John Coltrane, and Pharoah Sanders amongst others.


    The Ex

    27 Passports
    (Ex Records)

    Listen / Buy

    Long term anarcho-punks make music that, though it contains traces of punk, is more of a brilliant rhythmic blast with brilliant lyrics and surprisingly insidious melodies.


    Jack White

    Boarding House Reach
    (Third Man / XL Records)

    Listen / Buy

    Jack White’s third solo album is his boldest and bravest statement yet. Bookended by classic Jack tunes, it’s what’s in the middle that’ll have you freaking out… He’s gone all funky and cosmic. He’s got a mental drum machine. He’s wearing Nike. He’s finally embraced his love of hip-hop and thrown it all over the place. There are bits that sound like John Bonham rocking out with Prince produced by Funkadelic. It’s amazing and not what you would expect and it’s going to have a lot of Jack White fans fuming. Love it.

  • Warped rnb meets techno and field recordings on new Smerz XL EP

    By | March 7, 2018

    For fans of Kelela, Jlin and ABRA.

    Smerz are releasing new 8-track EP Have Fun on vinyl, this March via XL Recordings.

    Have Fun follows their sublimely slinky Okey, which was originally released on 12″ by Escho in 2016, followed by a digital offering on XL in 2017.

    As with previous records, Have Fun was produced, programmed and sung entirely by Smerz (aka Catherina and Henriette).

    The EP features four tracks premiered over the past few months alongside four unreleased tracks.

    Pre-order a copy of Have Fun here ahead of its 9th March release, check out the track list and watch the video for ‘Worth It’ below.

  • The 10 best new vinyl releases this week (19th February)

    By | February 19, 2018

    Gospel house, Indonesian field recordings and Richard Russell’s collaborative masterstroke Everything Is Recorded.

    A huge week for new music kicks off at the alter of Theo Parrish, who delivers his first sermon of the year on a stonking gospel house 12″. Elsewhere in the singles section, there’s ‘going-like-hot-cakes’ house from Wah Wah Wino, Indonesian field recordings, UK hardcore punk and the latest offering from wordy pop-smith Courtney Barnett.

    In album arrivals, this week sees massive drops for Everything Is Recorded on XL, and U.S. Girls on 4AD, the much-anticipated second LP from Bristol collective Young Echo, and vaped out house and jazzy broken beat from a mythical spot halfway between Peckham and Vancouver.

    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


    Theo Parrish

    Preacher’s Coming

    (Sound Signature)

    Listen / Buy

    Theo Parrish delivers his first sermon of 2018 in the form of ragtime gospel house burner ‘Preacher’s Comin’, which rattles through eight minutes of boogie woogie piano and sampled incantations, without ever boiling over. A testament to Parrish’s unique ability to turn the dancefloor into a place of worship, ‘Preacher’s Coming’ is backed by the stripped back ‘Gullah Geechee’, which pays percussive tribute to the African traditions of the Gullah and Geechee cultures on the sea islands of Georgia. Vital education for body, mind and soul.


    Wino D

    Wino D

    (Wah Wah Wino)

    Listen / Buy

    Dublin’s Wah Wah Wino continue to break the Internet, sending the vinyl trading floor into a crypto-style meltdown with their latest release. Previewed by a few highly coveted white labels, the debut of the mysterious Wino D lands on the turntable and begins to transform, tessellating through skittish rhythms, mind-warping bleeps and unexpected melodies. Between the hypnotic arrangements and micro-tonal flutterings, the five tracks total embody the shamanic house movement while the off kilter electronics should chime with your DMT machine elves. Big up the techno druids…believe the hype!


    Senyawa

    Calling the New Gods

    (Okraina Records)

    Listen / Buy

    Senyawa’s thrilling blend of experimentation and traditional Indonesian musics makes for a potent sonic brew both live and on record, and this 10” captures them at their rawest in a field recording of sorts, as the duo treads a path through their hometown of Yogyakarta, playing as they go. A psycho-geographic, dawn and until dusk journey, there’s no studio polish to be found here, and it’s all the better for it, standing as an unerringly direct and visceral commune between sound and location.


    Courtney Barnett

    Nameless, Faceless

    (Marathon Artists)

    Listen / Buy

    Courtney Barnett returns and thankfully she’s no less skewed. This time however her delivery is matched to quirky pop rock that will remain in your head just as long as her inventive wordplay.


    Arms Race

    The Beast EP

    (La Vida Es Un Mus)

    Listen / Buy

    It’s been a while since their New Wave Of British Hardcore set but now Arms Race are back with four truly fresh cuts of the finest hardcore punk being made in this country at the moment. These five crazy kids from London sure know how to bring the pain and rawk with The Beast’s four slabs of in your face power. You get the words and a download too.


    LPs


    Everything Is Recorded

    Everything Is Recorded By Richard Russell

    (XL Recordings)

    Listen / Buy

    One consequence of the access-all-areas exposure social media has afforded artists in recent years has been the increasing importance of process. No longer satisfied with the end product, we demand streams from rehearsals, photos from studios, teased hooks and all manner of digital ephemera that would even make the most ardent Fluxus practitioners weak at the knees. Committing that process to record has been part of XL boss Richard Russell’s vision for this project, which revels in the energy of collaboration between young artists like Sampha, Ibeyi, Kamasi Washington and Giggs, alongside a few older hands like Peter Gabriel and Green Gartside. Knitted together by Russell’s soft-touch production and evocative samples, Everything Is Recorded plays to the strengths of its protagonists, with Sampha shining brightest alongside the ghost of Curtis Mayfield on the nostalgic ‘Close But Not Quite’. In holding ‘open rehearsals’ and presenting these wonderful musicians as humans, capable of (occasionally) missing queues, hitting bum notes and failing to get the words out, Russell has succeeded in creating a patchwork record that ripples with the spirit of pastor TD Jakes’s recurring sample, “you are not alone”.


    Salomo

    Reflecting Pools

    (Vary)

    Listen / Buy

    …and now something for the smokers. Leipzig head Salomo follows his appearing on Vary’s…erm…Various Artist 12″ with a debut LP packed with vaped out house and jazzy broken beat. A mid-point between Peckham and Vancouver (musically rather than geographically), Reflecting Pools grooves effortlessly between steam-room stompers and MPC massages, picking you up and powering you down in equal measure. Get you a record that can do both.


    Young Echo

    Young Echo

    (Young Echo)

    Listen / Buy

    There’s no shortage of ideas and talent here as the Bristol based Young Echo collective pool their sonic imaginations into a second LP of downbeat, genre-promiscuous electronica. With a “no one idea can rule” philosophy, there are a host of sounds for you to wrap your ears around. That said, it’s an atmospheric unity that shines through here, as once again the group manage to avoid a disparate compilation of individual tracks, and let shared methodologies and tastes meld into a worthy whole.


    US Girls

    In A Poem Unlimited

    (4AD)

    Listen / Buy

    Meg Remy produces what might well be her greatest work with this archeological dig into the back roads of pop music. Shades of Kate Bush, Madonna and Björk in these clever tunes, presented in a heavyweight sleeve with striking album art.


    Shannon & The Clams

    Onion

    (Easy Eye Sound)

    Listen / Buy

    This is the Clams’ fifth album to date and the first to find The Black Keys’ Dan Auerbach behind the faders, bringing their good time shakers to life. Their tunes have become even more finely crafted, with that psychedelic ’60s sound shining through. It’s all like that bit in Ferris Bueller when he takes over the parade – good times guaranteed.

  • Sampha, Kamasi Washington and more join Richard Russell for Everything Is Recorded debut LP

    By | January 18, 2018

    XL Recordings co-founder assembles supergroup for album and live series.

    Musician, producer and label head Richard Russell is releasing the first LP from his Everything Is Recorded collective, this February via XL Recordings.

    Spearheaded by Russell, who also assumes production duties, EIR is driven by “a spirit of sound system inspired collaboration and experimentation” shares XL.

    EIR’s album features an intergenerational crew including Sampha (whose Process LP was our favourite record of 2017), Obongjayar, Kamasi Washington, Damon Albarn, Giggs, Ibeyi, Wiki, Syd, Rachel Zeffira, Infinite, Green Gartside, Peter Gabriel and Owen Pallett.

    The 12-track LP was created over the past few years at Russell’s studio The Copper House – a “creative second home for the revolving cast of both new and established artists who passed through to write, record and share ideas, mixing traditional recording sessions with extended, uninhibited live jams.”

    Everything Is Recorded by Richard Russell is available on limited edition yellow and standard black vinyl variants, with photography by Ed Morris and artwork by Maharishi Hardy Blechman.

    EIR’s album will be also accompanied by a four-day takeover of abandoned Dalston art deco cinema the Savoy, 14th – 17th February, ahead of the venue’s official reopening as The Hackney Arts Centre.

    Everything Is Recorded In Residence includes EIR’s debut live show on 15th February, open live rehearsals, a site specific music, art and film installation presented by Russell and Toby Ziegler across the venue, and a curated broadcast series on NTS.

    Head here to check out EIR’s archival site ahead of Everything Is Recorded by Richard Russell‘s 16th February release, listen to latest single ‘Bloodshot Red Eyes’, and check out the track list below.

    Tracklist

    1. Intro
    2. Close But Not Quite (feat. Sampha)
    3. She Said (feat. Obongjayar & Kamasi Washington)
    4. Wet Looking Road (feat. Giggs)
    5. Mountains Of Gold (feat. Sampha, Ibeyi, Wiki and Kamasi Washington)
    6. Show Love (feat. Syd & Sampha)
    7. Echoes In The Bone – Interlude (feat. Rachel Zeffira)
    8. Bloodshot Red Eyes (feat. Infinite & Green Gartside)
    9. Cane (feat. Ibeyi)
    10. Purify – Interlude (feat. Infinite & Peter Gabriel)
    11. Be My Friend (feat. Infinite)
    12. Everything Is Recorded (feat. Sampha and Owen Pallett)

  • Jonny L’s seminal drum’n’bass LP Sawtooth reissued for its 20th anniversary

    By | December 4, 2017

    Featuring iconic track ‘Piper’.

    Johnny L’s 1997 album Sawtooth is being rereleased for the first time, by XL Recordings this December.

    The LP draws influences from techno to ambient, ’70s and ’80s soul, Roni Size and LTJ Bukem.

    “Since the start I was inspired by the darker sound of ’80s electro, ’88 house , ’90’s hardcore, Grooverider, Doc Scott and 31 Records, Ray Keith and other tech-step dubs,” explains Jonny L.

    “At the time of Sawtooth I was still raving in the club scene. To me, drum’n’bass was the most innovative dance sound around.”

    Originally released on 5×10”, this reissue comes on blue 2×12”.

    Sawtooth LP is out 8th December 2017, on XL Recordings.

    Pre-order a copy here, listen to ‘Piper’ and check out the track list below.

    Tracklist

    1. Treading
    2. Piper
    3. S4
    4. Wish U Had Something
    5. Detroit
    6. Two Of Us
    7. Tychonic Cycle
    8. Moving Thru Air
    9. I Let U
    10. Obedience

  • Ibeyi announce new album Ash on XL Recordings

    By | September 1, 2017

    Featuring celestial saxman Kamasi Washington and more.

    Twin sisters Ibeyi are releasing the follow-up to their 2015, self-titled debut LP Ibeyi, which saw the duo fusing uplifting Afro-cuban, Yoruba-influenced spiritual vocals with electronic sounds, on 29th September 2017.

    Read more: Revolutionary design: The record sleeves of Communist Cuba

    Recorded and produced in November 2016 by Richard Russell, at The Copper House studio in London, the album also features collaborations with saxophonist Kamasi Washington, Meshell Ndegeocello, Chilly Gonzales, Male Rodriguez, and cover art by JR.

    “Ash is a more visceral and potent political statement (than the first album)… while firmly rooted in Afro-Cuban culture and history, it finds itself entirely concerned with Ibeyi’s present.”

    Pre-order a copy here ahead of its 29th September 2017 release, check out the tracklist and listen to second single ‘Deathless’ featuring Kamasi Washington, below.

    Tracklist:

    1. I Carried This For Years
    2. Away Away
    3. Deathless feat. Kamasi Washington
    4. I Wanna Be Like You
    5. No Man Is Big Enough For My Arms
    6. Valé
    7. Waves
    8. Transmission/Michaelion feat. Meshell Ndegeocello
    9. Me Voy feat. Mala Rodriguez
    10. When Will I Learn feat. Chilly Gonzales
    11. Numb
    12. Ash

  • Radiohead to reissue OK Computer on vinyl with three previously unreleased tracks

    By | May 2, 2017

    OKNOTOK comes twenty years since the original.

    Radiohead will reissue their seminal 1997 album OK Computer on vinyl and as a heavyweight boxed edition via XL Recordings next month.

    OKNOTOK features the original OK Computer twelve track album, eight B-sides, and three previously unreleased tracks: ‘I Promise,’ ‘Lift,’ and ‘Man Of War.’

    As well as the standard vinyl edition, Radiohead will make the album available as a boxed edition – not dissimilar to the band’s limited edition A Moon Shaped Pool release last year. Housed in a black box emblazoned with a dark image of a burned copy of OK Computer, the edition is pressed to three heavyweight black 12″ vinyl records and a hardcover book featuring over thirty artworks – some previously unseen – and full lyrics.

    But that’s just the start. The box also contains a notebook with 104 pages from Thom Yorke’s notes from the time of the original release, a sketchbook with artists Stanley Donwood and Tchock’s ‘preparatory work’ and a C90 cassette mix tape compiled by the band, taken from Ok Computer session archives and demo tapes.

    Get your pre-orders in now ahead of the official release on 26th June. There is also an indie-only light blue vinyl edition up for grabs.

    Update 11/7/17: Watch Radiohead unbox the limited edition version in this new video below:

  • The 10 best vinyl releases this week (10th April)

    By | April 10, 2017

    Arca, Future Islands and more.

    Such was the offering of new albums this week that we’ve had to bend the rules slightly. In the singles bin are two overgrown reissues that could just pass for extended EPs in the form of library legend Alessandro Alessandroni’s Afro Voodoo and a stunning new collection of Congolese electronics from Denis Mpunga & Paul K. on Music From Memory.

    For the albums proper, we’ve got heavy hitters from Arca, who delivers his finest work to date, and Future Islands, with further choice for all moods provided by Mastodon, Happyness and A Vision of Panorama.

    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


    Amor

    Paradise / Love In An Arc

    (Night School)

    Listen / Buy

    The ever amazing Night School label strike a rich disco vein with this debut release from Amor – a band made up of Richard Youngs, Luke Fowler, Michael Francis Duch And Paul Thomson. Think Liquid Liquid on 99 Records if they both came from Glasgow. It’s got the sonic magic of that great city through both 13+ minute tracks on the 12″, which search, build and break like the era’s great extended disco mixes.


    Alessandro Alessandroni

    Afro Discoteca

    (Four Flies)

    Listen / Buy

    Four Flies don the safari gear for an expedition into the extensive vaults of Italian Library titan Alessandro Alessandroni, weaving their way through filmic jazz and experimental whistles to find a long forgotten tape titled Afro Discoteca. Restoring the recordings to their former brilliance, the label treat us to four tracks of unreleased Alessandroni inspired by African rhythms, primal grooves and the Mediterranean club scene of the late ’70s. Already causing a stir amongst the European DJ elite, this is essential listening for anyone of a cosmic complexion or Balearic bent.


    Denis Mpunga and Paul K.

    Criola

    (Music from Memory)

    Listen / Buy

    Music from Memory have done us all a good turn here with this compilation that takes in a 1980-84 span of criminally under-heard works from the Congolese/ Belgian duo Denis Mpunga and Paul K. “African music born out of an industrial European landscape” is the label’s apt description and indeed this one manages to effortlessly merge Congolese percussive stylings and Soukous/ Highlife flavours with computerized drum machines and synths. This one’s not likely to venture too far from the stereo in the coming months, and indeed given the strength of the material within, and the interest in unearthing these kinds of formative cross-pollinations, it’s hard to believe these sounds are only just surfacing to a wider audience. Highly recommended.


    Coby Sey

    Whities 10

    (Whities)

    Listen / Buy

    Having collaborated with the likes of Mica Levi and Klein, as well as continually delivering the goods on NTS radio, this is the second solo outing for Coby Sey’s blend of sedated sound and textured rhythm, upping the format from his first 7” to this 10” on Whities. Channeling a host of styles into the mix but managing to twist their fabric and delivery away from the purely derivative, this one casts some familiarities anew, and is a keen statement of intent. Worth keeping an eye on all components here- artist and label alike.


    Baltic Fleet

    Black Lounge

    (Blow Up)

    Listen / Buy

    Baltic Fleet make discofied krautrock that will make your feet move. They blend squelchy synths with shards of guitar over The Fall style basslines resulting in concise and economical Neu! like trance rock that veers supremely confidently into the discotheque.


    LPs


    Future Islands

    The Far Field

    (4AD)

    Listen / Buy

    Off the back of the extraordinary and deferred breakthrough LP Singles, Future Islands fifth album captures a band in motion, both physically, from an unforgiving tour schedule, and spiritually, in coming to terms with such vastly magnified exposure. They are by no means the first to find looking up at the heights more comfortable than looking down from the summit, but it’s in this tension that singer Sam Herring finds inspiration. More wary but far from jaded, Herring’s deliberate articulations bellow with authority of a singer owning his role, at times a tortured post-punk icon, at others veering towards the grisly, bar-room soul that coloured his recent cameo on Badbadnotgood’s IV. As a collection of songs, The Far Field sets out its stall early and choses never to stray too far from its way, its aspect captured in an epithet from triumphant duet with Debby Harry ‘Shadows’: “A melody that trails and falls yet never fully blooms / Is it enough? Well is it for you?”


    Arca

    Arca

    (XL Recordings)

    Listen / Buy

    Arca returns with his third full-length LP and the first to expose his sheer and brittle voice to record. Vulnerable and controlled, the album begins with the elegiac ‘Piel’, his voice echoing tenderly within the cathedrals of sound Arca-the-producer is so adept at creating. The track points to a shifting relationship that the voice adds to Arca’s work, where his maximalist, claustrophobic sonic structures appear somehow more distant and spacious, as if allowing his voice to physically inhabit them. As grandiose as Björk’s Vulnicura, to which Arca contributed, and heaving with operatic melodrama, it’s an album that somehow makes everything which came before seem incomplete. A self-titled rebirth, it’s as if we’re finally being introduced to the real Arca.


    A Vision Of Panorama

    Castaway

    (Chit Chat)

    Listen / Buy

    Launching his lilo into the cool azure of the Mediterranean, A Vision Of Panorama heads across the sun-kissed waves in search of bold new horizons. Branching out a touch from his trademark Balearic boogie, the Russian producer embraces the sonic swelter and pulse-raising tempo of the golden age of Italian house to deliver a dreamy sophomore LP for the unstoppable Chit Chat. Pungent with sun tan lotion and alive with the chime and flutter of digital marimba and synthesized flute, Castaway should be the perfect soundtrack to the summer season.


    Mastodon

    Emperor Of Sand

    (Warners)

    Listen / Buy

    You just can’t ignore this. Atlanta’s finest strike back with album number eight and if this is as far as you go with metal then you really need go no further. It’s full of riffs, there seems to be an octopus playing drums and they even go all John Carpenter at one point. It’s heavy as shit, full of licks, full of hooks and shows quite plainly why Mastodon are the top of their game. Just check the opening of ‘Andromeda’…


    Happyness

    Write In

    (Moshi Moshi)

    Listen / Buy

    Ah happiness. I remember that. A few remnants of the feeling come back when listening to the second LP by these spirited college rockers. Write In takes the blueprint from their heavily ’90s inspired debut Weird Little Birthday and adds in more originality and loses the sprawl. Fun time slacker guitar music that veers all over the dial.

  • Arca announces self-titled album on XL Recordings

    By | February 22, 2017

    Hear the producer sing on the album’s opening track ‘Piel’.

    Arca has unveiled his self-titled third album which will be released this spring on XL Recordings.

    Arca follows 2015’s incredible Mutant and features the producer’s singing voice for the first time on a proper album. Hear it now on the arresting opener ‘Piel’.

    The producer provided a hint of a vocal direction on last year’s Entrañas mixtape which featured the producer singing on the final track ‘Sin Rumbo’, which appears as the centerpiece to Arca.

    With artwork by regular collaborator Jesse Kanda, you can pre-order your copy on gatefold single vinyl (with 12″ booklet) here ahead of its release on 7th April and see the tracklist below.

    Tracklist:

    01. Piel
    02. Anoche
    03. Saunter
    04. Urchin
    05. Reverie
    06. Castration
    07. Sin Rumbo
    08. Coraje
    09. Whip
    10. Desafío
    11. Fugaces
    12. Miel
    13. Child

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