29 October 2010

Madteo - Sinister Ministers (Meakusma 002x) - 8/10

The music on this record, issued in January this year, is like a fata morgana. You see something hovering in the air, then get closer, but the only thing you can touch is emptiness. You think you can get it easily, but no. This is the true style of Madteo: Nothing is too apparent.
For example: The playing speed of the record. "Made Off", that in many sound samples runs on 45 RPM, and "Sheepdipping" feel irritatingly slow - fiddling with pitch control would add new angles to the thing.
All five compositions move along deep and sinister electronica where A-side carries somewhat academical feel - cinematic vocal samples may derive from an earnest psychology professor with horn glasses. Also slight melancholy ("Delphic Sophistic") can be found, but my choice is uptight "Deliverance" with disintegrated bass and beats, just a small bit reminding of dub techno. "Do What U Do" is an hip-hop joint for the end, with MC assistance by Sensational.
After having pre-listened the EP on the web I was impressed, but the actual record had to be tested by turntables several times to make clear that "Sinister Ministers" is a decent record, although it occasionally resorts to commonplace sound textures.
Belgian label Meakusma is a fine address: For the start an impressive compilation "Rüts", thereafter Terrence Dixon found his way to the label and most recent signing is disco-esque act [sic!].

28 October 2010

DUST OFF: Genetic Waste Remixes (Delirium Red 06 - 1995)

Soon it's Halloween and an higher concentration of skulls and obscure figures can be observed even in Estonia. Monster theme has been immensely popular in the hardcore nation and also "Genetic Waste" lines up with threatening symbols. Hard sounds that have well survived the years after being issued in 1995.
The original track is a dark and accelerated slammer, but the best comes on the B-side where Genetic Waste itself and DJ Delirium deliver a really hypnotizing hardcore track, the one with "infinity" sample. It's a really living track with different beat patterns.
Lenny Dee and Wavelan come with two remixes and I still have to say Lenny's efforts never convinced me. Too loud, too pounding and somewhat vacuous, like here. Disintegrator's "Acid Storm" is a fierce hard acid trip for the end.

21 October 2010

DUST OFF: C-Tank - Nightmares Are Reality (Overdrive 030-12 - 1993)

C-Tank will be prescribed for anger management. Like in "Clockwork Orange", where violent Alex was forced to watch brutal movies, in expectation these will extract his evil thoughts. This vintage hardcore record may reduce tensions, but afterwards one can't escape the feeling of deeply and thoroughly hammered beef.
The best for the start: In the title track tempestous battle noises create a threatening atmosphere before brutal kick-drum beats step in. Childish samples from Evil Dead spoil the game a bit, but otherwise, just give a go.
Then "House Hallucination" mixes an housey groove and hardcore beats - for the brave to enjoy. Hard as nails and howling "Tank Trip" manifests the no-compromise approach and "Montonic" adds burning drops of acid. Fans of dumb pounding find their own satisfaction ("Air Bounce", "The Rave Zone") and "Biolunch" is just too fast, even with a -8 pitch.
In the first part of 90's, Overdrive was a large factory of harder German techno that supplied the crowds with massive output ranging from primitive knock-beats to tracks for eternity. It's surprising that Andy Düx still keeps the label up and running - already for over 20 years.

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18 October 2010

DUST OFF: DJ Sneak - Blue Funk II (Relief 722 - 1995)

It's fun to take a train, thought DJ Sneak and in 1995 made the second release of "Blue Funk" for the fans of rail travel. Mr Sosa is not aboard of an old-fashioned vehicle for admiring Swiss landscapes, but he steers a horsepower-laden Midwest cargo train. The man himself said once that he was inspired by Farley "Jackmaster" Funk who mixed acapella train sounds to his radio shows in Chicago.
Machine-gun-like "Runaway Train" is overly percussive, almost techno, with wild drum staccato. Heavily pumping "Purple Haze" goes above others - a real train track with monotonous rhythm. Its dry and filtered beats get the closest to the mid-90's Chicago's mad and minimalist but rough sound. "Jumpin' Jacks" reminds of booty-house, but receives a downgrade because of irritating hooting. "Last Stop - All Aboard" makes a step towards deep house and even has some melody, unlike others.
By now we know DJ Sneak as a well-paid guest at numerous jet set parties with Krug and Mumm pouring all over the place. But in mid-90's he was one of the young and angry producers in Chicago to make the club floors burn. It just did not last: Already "U Can't Hide It From Your Bud" in 1997 gave a clear indication that things are changing and not to the better.
The label, Relief Records, is a brilliant chapter in the development of Chicago house and keeping the traditions alive, but it's another story.

DJ Sneak "Purple Haze"

14 October 2010

Black Cow - Mojito / Toni The Lefty (Black Cow 003) - 7/10

Black Cow is not an expert of animal breeding: The horned creature pictured on the label is a courageous bull, not a cow. But this observation is irrelevant because the music is worth checking. By style the seven-inch from Japan moves between soul and funk, with two quite differently sounding tracks.
"Mojito" on the A-side is a shuffling percussion and rhythm exercise where we hear lively synths and vocal snippets. On the flip, soulful and latin-minded "Toni The Lefty" recalls bow-tied vocal group and shining horns in Acapulco. Because of the format the tracks are short, but neat.

Black Cow "Mojito"
Source: www.lighthouserecords.jp

13 October 2010

Marco Bernardi - Ist Das (Dirty Planet 003) - 10/10

Prepare yourself for a ride. "I Feel The Lies" flies with time machine to the days of acid house. True to best traditions of 80's Chicago, the track spins around bubbling sounds and thumping beats, with the vocal part done by electro legend Keith Tucker. Cool, Aux 88 front man in a totally new role.
Exium has mastered a remix of "Giro", delivering thus the best techno track of 2010, in my humble opinion. Millsian jingles and darkly pounding four-to-the-floor arrangement is exceptionally good. Exium's 2006 release "Unemotional" was my first encounter with the Spaniards - those who have not yet discovered them, it's about time.
"Msry" is, again, a different story: Slightly shuffling and smoother than preceding tracks, built on harmony of chords and strings, but with technoid backdrop and flying grooves. Lovely and full of force. The original of "Giro" is cosmic electro with singing synths and a robotic voice revealing the soul of machines. An intense lead-out.
The record is so multi-faced that sounds like a "Various Artists" release. Well, the man from Glasgow has enjoyed Tucker's and Exium's company, but it's still his creation. Not a single second of boredom comes up here, just excellent!
Marco Bernardi - Giro (Exium remix)

10 October 2010

Delta Funktionen - Setup One: Decorum (Ann Aimee 11) - 8/10

I don't have any idea what kind of offices does the label Delsin have, but can imagine a brass coated plate at their doorsteps saying "Detroit consulate in Amsterdam". Also Ann Aimee, Delsin's department for more intellectual output shares the values of the mother "company".
The newest by Delta Funktionen inclines to the floor and has only a few thoughtful moments. The plot is driven by Detroit-inspired tracks with heavy basses and metallic dubbiness. "Abundance" is a solid opener that goes like by deep techno manual, as does its twin "One's Space" on the flip.
The best part comes with intense and thundering "Please Identify", for the era of total surveillance with biometric passes and ever-present CCTV. It's powerful and sharp, with some acid is dropped and showing the tougher face of the artist. B2, "Erosion", makes to think about Torsten Pröfrock's project of the same name, on Chain Reaction, and it's also the most reduced piece here, blowing like autumn wind over the fallen leaves.
A well-done record that is like Toyota: Comfy and modern, but missing a certain kick for full enjoyment.

Delta Funktionen "Please Identify"
(Source: www.delsin.org)

05 October 2010

Aaron-Carl (1973-2010)

At the end of September 37-year-old Detroit producer Aaron-Carl died of lymphoma. Final diagnosis was issued only a week before his final departure. Aaron-Carl was best known for his deep house productions, issued among others on Soul City, Underground Resistance sub-label, and later he created own platform Wallshaker Music. But he also did with "Down" an electro release for Metroplex. R.I.P.
Aaron-Carl: Down (Resurrected Vocal)