February 27, 2008

Bits & Pieces: Jan/Feb 2008

Michael F. Gill runs through 20 choice tracks from the past couple months, with soundclips…

01 Das Pop – Fool For Love (Aeroplane Remix) [Prestel]

One of my favorite cuts of early 2008, as the suddenly prolific Eskimo duo Aeroplane turn what was originally a standard indie rock song into a slushy electro-disco epic with widescreen synth-strings and anthemic guitars. Should be big with the cosmic/beardo crowd.

02 Omar-S – Psychotic Photosynthesis [FXHE Records]

The actual music of Omar-S can sometimes take a back seat to the presentation and mystery behind it, but there’s no denying the quality here. “Psychotic Photosynthesis” is ten and a half minutes of steadily sighing melancholy, plotting its main weary motif against higher-pitched drones that are more emotionally unstable. Remember this one at the end of the year…

03 D1 – I’m Loving [Tempa]

Irresistibly sweet combination of broken-beat, some dubstep, and soulful house. Is the summer really that far away?

04 The Human League – Things That Dreams Are Made Of (Justus Kohncke Dub Mix) [Hooj Choons]

If you know the original, and are familiar with Justus’ production style, you can pretty much figure out what this sounds like before hearing it. Yet knowing that doesn’t stop it from achieving digital disco bliss.

05 Clark – For Wolves Crew [Warp]

A would-be hyper rave track, but since it’s on Warp, you know there’s a very good chance that over-thinking will be involved. But while such structural density causes “For Wolves Crew” to loses its trackiness, there’s still a bunch of sublime bits, include a run-up of vintage AFX-sounding melodies in the middle.

06 Gel Abril – Your Face Is A Mess (Itamar Sagi Remix) [Be As One Imprint]
07 Acid Circus – Reduxtion (Agaric Remix) (Droid Recordings)
08 Mihalis Safras – Pigs Around (Mark Broom Remix) (Globox)
09 Sascha Funke – Double Checked (Bpitch Control)

Horror minimal and techno is in no short supply in ’08: three out of these four cuts come with pitch black vocals, while the Agaric Remix loads up on pitch-decaying loops. Kiki, don’t give up on your day job as a session vocalist! The Itamar Sagi remix is my favorite of this bunch, if only for the amazing crispness of the production.

10 Shur-i-kan vs Milton Jackson – Swap Shop (Winding Road Records)
11 Franck Roger – Blind Way (Real Tone)

Two big Liebe Detail style tech-house tracks that are sure to work well on the floor. The Franck Roger 12″ is a bit more on the classic deep house tip, especially if you prefer the vocal version (which I do).

12 Bruce Lenkei – Moonlight Zombie Dance (Permanent Vacation)
13 Tony Remy & Bluey – See No Evil (Dome)

How many Bruces are there in techno? I can only think of Bruce Logan at the moment. Anyhow, “Moonlight Zombie Dance” is on the better side of Permanent Vacation’s cosmic/balearic stew, a patiently shuffling midtempo cut that’s filled with a variety of small melodic lines and marimba-ish keyboard sounds. “See No Evil” is the surprise track of interest on Tony Remy’s nu-jazzy LP Incognito Guitars; it’s celestial vibe gives it a Prins Thomas meets Gilles Peterson feel.

14 The Presets – My People (Kris Menace Remix) (Modular Recordings)
15 Alphabeat – Fascination (Linus Loves Dub) (Charisma)
16 Letroset – Arcade Hater (Point.One Recordings)

Kris Menace & Linus Loves remixes are a bit like comfort food to me these days, as they are churning out predictable but pleasing filter-disco/electro-house floorfillers that stop short of entering Kitsuneland. With its trebley vocal chop-ups and jerky rhythms, Letroset’s “Arcade Hater” also shows more restraint and trackyness than you’d expect from such nu-rave signifiers in 2008.

17 Skream – Oskilatah (Tempa)
18 Skream – 2D (Tempa)

I guess it’s a healthy indicator of ambition that most dubstep 12s are wildly hit or miss. No surprise that “2D” has been the most talked about cut on Skream’s Skreamizm 4, as it has got an appealingly melodic-IDM feel on top of its tough, plodding beat. “Oskilatah” is more trad-dubstep, with that familiar lurching bass throb, this time amped up for the peak of the night.

19 Deadbeat – Mecca Drum Jack (Wagon Repair)

A nice percussive tool which could transition your set into (or away from) mnml, Skull Disco-style dubstep, or Afro-funk. I personally imagine it as bed music you play while the promoter of a club night starts doing his microphone spiel and is thanking everyone for coming.

20 Jacek Sienkiewicz – Living In Oblivion (Smallville)

If you’ve been reading this blog since the beginning, you know we have shown a lot of love for Sienkiewicz in the past. But damn, is this guy sitting on a gold mine of vinyl-only tracks during the past 2-3 years or what? Here’s another one from late 2007, full of paralyzing synth flashes that leaves me breathless.

[Michael F. Gill]


  1. Whoa, nice to see a BBtP update. Interesting and unexpected list!

    Comment by Steve — February 28, 2008 @ 1:56 am
  2. Nice list. Some ones I love. Some I’m glad to hear for the first time.

    Comment by E-Heavy/Soul Clap — February 28, 2008 @ 5:20 pm
  3. is this site dead or what?

    Comment by adit — February 29, 2008 @ 2:05 am
  4. nice list. major expectations for Das Pop, Omar-S, Clark, Skream and Deadbeat, those tracks are really, really great.

    Comment by aciiiiiid — March 12, 2008 @ 10:00 am
  5. s0o0o pretty!!!

    Comment by stari atari — November 26, 2008 @ 11:45 pm
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