November was truly packed with new music, some challenging (like Basic Soul Unit's Under the Same Sky, Lotic's Agitations and Rabit's Communion) and others not so much (Death and Vanilla's To Where the Wild Things Are, Polynation's Allogamy and Tropic of Cancer's Restless Idylls). There was also some slightly disappointing releases, like Rustie's EVENIFUDONTBELIEVE and Art Angels from Grimes (both too sickly and full-on).
As is always the case with these monthly round-ups, I try my hardest to sequence the tracks in the most meaningful and enjoyable way, to enhance your listening pleasure. This month we start with Doubtshapes, a track from Ian William Craig's new album Cradle For The Wanting, where the manipulated vocals gently wash over you. Which leads perfectly onto the the sublime KID606 Dub Remix of Actress's Bird Matrix; deep and melancholic (all four tracks from that remix EP are superb and highly recommended). The Oneohtrix Point Never album Garden of Delete is one of those challenging releases I alluded to above; definitely one for the cool kids. Animals is the closest thing to "listenable" with it's manipulated vocoder sharing a melancholic story in an unknown language.
A change of tempo with fourth track Calm Down from Answer Code Request; easily the best of the four tracks from his new EP MDR 18 (Marcel Dettmann Records), balancing tuneful bass with contrasting synths. Canadian producer Nathan Jonson contributes the rock solid centrepiece of this month's selection with the gargantuan monster that is Towards The Sun. With hints of all the best tracks you can think of, it's beats, synths and vocals all sound familiar yet fresh and new. Currently competeing with IPMAN's Regicide as track of the year.
You may find it handy to lump producers like Lotic in with other Mutant Noise makers like Rabit and Arca; they all certainly make unconventional dance music. Trauma, the opening track from Lotic's recent album Agitations, is a fine example of that disruptive genre and offers perfect contrast to Displacement, the gentle and reflective work that follows from Rafael Anton Irisarri (from The Sight Below fame). The thumping, electrified beat from Inigo Kennedy's Kepler once again provides sharp contrast and we continue on our journey with uplifting synths.
Five years after his excellent debut album On Your Own Again, Mexican producer Cubenx (Cesar Urbina) returns with sophomore effort Elegiac. Treasures offers heartfelt Tech House from an album of mostly leftfield Pop. René Pawlowitz (i.e. Techno captain Shed) dons his house breeks as Zigg Gonzalezz to produce some scintiliating, feel-good vibes to end this month's selection. High Jackin, is lifted from a three-track EP of the same name, out on Power House.
- Ian William Craig – Doubtshapes
- Actress, Kid606 – Bird Matrix - Kid606 Dub Remix
- Oneohtrix Point Never – Animals
- Answer Code Request – Calm Down
- Nathan Jonson – Towards The Sun
- Lotic – Trauma
- Rafael Anton Irisarri – Displacement
- Inigo Kennedy – Kepler
- Cubenx – Treasures
- Zigg Gonzalezz – High Jackin