Naja Naja: EP (bié Records/Wharf Cat, 2022)

May 31, 2022 at 6:29 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Naja Naja: EP

Naja Naja are a Beijing-based duo with connections to Gong Gong Gong, hence the release of their EP through Wharf Cat. They uses guitars, synths, and drum programming to write songs with steady, propulsive rhythms and lyrics which could accompany dystopian minimalist synth pop from the early ’80s. The music definitely has a resemblance to new wave, but it’s just as likely to register as post-punk, indie rock, or even Krautrock. “New Toy” has fuzzy, distorted guitar and monotone vocals to match lyrics about a product that will supposedly improve and enhance your life. “Dong Dong” is music for a very lo-fi bedroom dance party, maybe even a lightswitch rave, ending with the refrain “Dance with the drag queen”. After the slower, lyrically surreal “Running Dog, Floating Elephant”, “Sunset Shopping Center” is an upbeat instrumental with a motorik rhythm and sunny guitar melodies which could easily have appeared on a Michael Rother album. “Copy of You” is darker and closer to the goth end of post-punk, and then finally “Tunnel” is a more restrained number that lets the EP fade away in the distance.

Torn: Exit EP (Samurai Music, 2022)

May 26, 2022 at 9:16 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Torn: Exit EP

Torn follows his astonishing album Borderline with this four-track EP, intended as the final chapter of the album’s narrative. Out-for-blood d’n’b crafted with utter precision, much like his labelmate and sometime collaborator Homemade Weapons. The first three tracks are the sound of controlled combustion, with “Oar” being the sharpest and deadliest. Then the final “Tempest Of Lust” is a doom metal drone that only briefly features some thundering percussion. After this string of releases, Torn is permanently on my watch list.

G Jones & EPROM: Acid Disk 2 (Illusory, 2022)

May 24, 2022 at 9:14 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

G Jones & EPROM: Acid Disk 2

G Jones was entirely off my radar before I heard “A2C2I2D”, apparently an in-demand track from his recent live shows, when it was released as a single earlier this year. This was a rare instance when I had to instantly replay a song the first time I heard it because it was just too much to process at first. Distorted blown-out acid breaks at its filthiest, yet enough of a consistent groove that I can easily mix it in a Crush Collision set. This EP with EPROM (another well-known EDM type I haven’t really paid attention to) does further damage, going for a similar acid breaks hybrid, but taking it in so many other directions. EPROM’s “Facebang (Acid Mix)”, presumably a tribute to Bangface, starts out with an almost majestic intro before absolutely pummeling with brutal, pitched-down breakbeats. G Jones’ “On the Platform” has hi-tech acid synths similar to recent Squarepusher, and then it just rockets heavenward as an emotional d’n’b epic. The collaboration “Final Lap” is similarly teary, touching on trance and footwork before blasting off into an acid jungle climax. It… is… breathtaking. Easily one of the biggest surprises of the year for me.

Show #629 – 5/22/22

May 22, 2022 at 2:23 am | Posted in The Answer Is In The Beat | Leave a comment

12:00 am TSVI & Loraine James ~ Awaiting ~ 053 (new) ~ AD 93 ~ 2022
12:04 am Basic Rhythm ~ Horse Mout’ ~ Cool Down the Dance (new) ~ Planet Mu ~ 2022
12:08 am Fixate ~ Shaded ~ Fixate (new) ~ Exit Records UK ~ 2022
12:13 am AGT Rave Cru ~ Terror Overdrive ~ Advanced Ganymede Technologies ~ Balkan Recordings ~ 2008
12:18 am Drumwarp ~ Good For Ya ~ JBDUBZ Vol. 9 (new) ~ Juke Bounce Werk ~ 2021
12:26 am Dev/Null ~ E-Yeah ~ Microjunglizm (new) ~ RAVE4EVAR ~ 2021
12:29 am Lone ~ Visited By Astronauts (SHERELLE Had A Groove Remix) ~ Natural Aerials (new) ~ Greco-Roman ~ 2022
12:34 am Angel D’lite ~ R U Ready ~ Re4mat (new) ~ Ritual Poison ~ 2022
12:41 am MoMA Ready ~ Irregular Codec Strain ~ Singles ~ Bandcamp ~ 2020
12:45 am Moby feat. Jim James ~ Porcelain [Bambounou Remix] ~ Reprise Remixes (new) ~ Deutsche Grammophon ~ 2022
12:51 am Brainwaltzera ~ Dropp On Gminor (ΠΕΡΑ ΣΤΑ ΟΡΗ † Φlesh Mix) ~ Brainwaltzera Remixed EP ~ Touched Music ~ 2020
12:56 am Tim Reaper & Coco Bryce ~ Dreamscape (Thunderdome) ~ Tim & Coco’s Pack of Lies ~ Myor Massiv ~ 2018
1:02 am Andrew Bernstein ~ distant cousins of a common ancestor ~ a presentation (new) ~ Hausu Mountain ~ 2022
1:05 am Mall Grab ~ Positive Energy Forever [FLP Remix] ~ Medkit ~ Bandcamp ~ 2020
1:12 am bye2 ~ 「逆説」 Heaven & Earth ~ 霊体ミミズ (GHOST_WORM) ~ Bandcamp ~ 2020
1:18 am x.nte ~ Why Bother ~ Antifreeze Criminal ~ Sonicterror ~ 2020
1:22 am 5ubaruu feat. windowshopping ~ sh5<<< ~ http://www.555.6 ~ Landline Collective ~ 2021
1:24 am Torn ~ Bushido ~ Borderline (new) ~ Samurai Music ~ 2022
1:33 am Automatisme & Stefan Paulus ~ Wisswand ~ Gap/Void (new) ~ Constellation ~ 2022
1:40 am Willis Anne ~ da = db ~ I'm the same distance as you (new) ~ LAN ~ 2022
1:46 am Aaron Bianchi ~ 81759 ~ Fade EP ~ Sonicterror ~ 2019
1:52 am SØS Gunver Ryberg ~ Doing our best is no longer good enough ~ Whities 030 ~ Whities ~ 2020
1:57 am hyacinth. ~ stay pressed. ~ Hold Onto Love ~ The Jewel Garden ~ 2021
1:58 am Moderat ~ Drum Glow ~ MORE D4TA (new) ~ Monkeytown ~ 2022

Andrew Bernstein: a presentation (Hausu Mountain, 2022)

May 21, 2022 at 11:21 am | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Andrew Bernstein: a presentation

The latest album from Horse Lords’ Andrew Bernstein utilizes the just intonation tuning system he’s known for, but here he stretches his practice out with a series of patient, deeply immersed drones. Turn it up loud and you realize how raw it actually is, and how hard it must be to actually play these pieces. “in flux” is nearly half an hour of gradually shifting, overlapping tones. It approaches something resembling a lighter, happier moment over 20 minutes in, and also pauses shortly a few times before it finally reaches a definite end. It’s more of a soundbath than “sounding against a static tone”, which immediately zones in on a receptor in my brain, with interference against a stark, unwavering tone creating a harsh flutter. “distant cousins of a common ancestor” is sort of a short epilogue, not really bringing the album to a climax but at least presenting its general idea in a more condensed dose.

Fixate: s/t (Exit Records UK, 2022)

May 20, 2022 at 7:25 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Fixate: s/t

Fixate’s new album (either his first or second, depending on whether What Comes Around counts as an album or EP) has plenty of DJ ammo, but it feels like it’s meant to be experienced as a front-to-end journey. Unconfined by genre, the producer slips between modes and tempos, delivering well-tooled rhythmic expressions. Often categorized as “halftime”, his productions often draw from a drum’n’bass palette without really resembling the genre’s typical rhythms; these tracks often sound more like a twitchier variation on trap. “Gristle” is a cross between electro and the current UK bass scene, and “G Reg Metro” ducks down a similar alley. Some of the tracks that seem like they’re going to be closer to straightforward drum’n’bass end up curving away in remarkable ways, like the acid techno fantasia of “On Edge”. Only towards the end of the album (or the second plate, on the LP version) does it resemble more typical d’n’b, and tracks like “Must Be” do it with class.

Crush Collision 5/19/22

May 20, 2022 at 12:31 am | Posted in Crush Collision | Leave a comment

Crush Collision back at its usual Thursday night time slot!!!
Movement and Return to the Source/No Way Back are next weekend!
Jeff Mills film screenings @ Cinema Detroit on Sunday 5/29!
Theo Parrish all night Get Down @ Spot Lite!

10:00 pm Bogdan Raczynski ~ ADLDE
10:06 pm Mogwaa ~ Ethereal Waves
10:09 pm Ron Trent presents WARM feat. Khruangbin ~ Flos Potentia (Sugar, Cotton, Tabacco)
10:14 pm Peggy Gou ~ I Go (DJ Koze Remix)
10:19 pm Nathan Micay ~ Beginning Ballads
10:25 pm Tissu ~ Ground Loop
10:30 pm FOANS ~ Manitou
10:34 pm Basic Rhythm ~ What I Would Do
10:37 pm Koehler ~ Thief
10:42 pm Studio 1 ~ Light Blue
10:45 pm Logic1000 ~ Can’t Stop Thiking About (Dub)
10:50 pm DJ Lag ~ Let’s Do This
10:54 pm Robert Hood (local) ~ Shadows
10:58 pm Tryphème ~ Universal Language
11:04 pm DR8 ~ Thru the Machines
11:07 pm Tessela ~ Glisten
11:13 pm Moderat ~ Neon Rats
11:19 pm &on&on ~ Hatch
11:24 pm Andrea ~ TrackQY
11:29 pm Otik ~ Blasphemy
11:34 pm Overmono ~ Quadraluv
11:40 pm HAAi with Jon Hopkins ~ Baby, We’re Ascending
11:46 pm Mars89 ~ North Shibuya Local Service
11:49 pm TSVI & Loraine James ~ Observe
11:53 pm Andras ~ Honeybird
11:56 pm Oli XL ~ Go Oli Go!

Ben Miller: In The Moment LP (Two Rooms Records, 2022)

May 18, 2022 at 8:18 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Ben Miller: In The Moment LP

This LP collects various multiphonic guitar works by Ben Miller, dating from the mid-’80s to three decades later, and including a few previously released tracks and live performances. The intention of these recordings is to push the instrument as far as it can go, using it as a rhythmic or textural device rather than playing clear melodies or mapping out traditional song structures. His very physical playing embraces all aspects of the instrument, pulling and smacking more sounds out of it than most people would think of. He playfully injects animal sound effects into “The Zoo”, then takes us on a patient avant-pop journey with the 11-minute “In the Skies and in the Stars”. The second side is heavy on electronics but more minimal overall, constructing drones instead of rhythms. Live piece “Glass Worms of the Fourth Stone” is the most alien one, using crackling radio transmissions and shorted electronics (and a Casio SK-1) to project towards another mode of perception.

Mark Kirschenmann: Cybersonic Outreach (New Focus Recordings/Panoramic Recordings, 2021)

May 17, 2022 at 8:53 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Mark Kirschenmann: Cybersonic Outreach

Longtime University of Michigan educator and experimental musician Mark Kirschenmann has a truly distinctive approach to improvisation, outfitting his electric trumpet with a multitude of pedals and plug-ins, blasting the instrument far beyond its usual capabilities. His new album contains eight pieces that each tap into their own unique space and explore them at length. “The Cascades” has a buzzing, reedy tone that flitters from the edges, while swampy electronics burble underneath. “Turning Time Tables” has more EWI-like textures, applied to sparse, alien vibrations. “Duet for Vocaloid Trumbots” is a beamed-out space lament sung by two robotic near-voices, both individually and then layered together. “Out of Bounds” is frigid yet vibrant, an extended glimpse at a supernatural happening. “Color Wheel” seems similar at first but gets razzier, and also more twinkly. “Lamentation for My Mother” rips a whole lot of emotion from that atomic trumpet, set to another nervous, eerie drone.

Willis Anne: I’m the same distance as you 12″ EP (LAN, 2022)

May 16, 2022 at 7:11 pm | Posted in Reviews | 1 Comment

Willis Anne: I’m the same distance as you 12″ EP

The title makes it seem like coming up with radically different rhythms is so easy. Maybe it isn’t as hard as it seems, but Willis Anne is far removed from your average producer. “da = db” seems placid at first, then abrupt percussive hits start dropping from the sky out of nowhere. Highly detailed without being dense and weighty, it’s a precise arrangement of something crumbling apart. “a/b = d/d” would be a smoothed-out deep house cut if not for the jittery, panned percussive loops that simply do not budge for most of the song. “a/b = 1” is almost more straightforward in how it sets busy drum machine programming (with unusually splashy cymbals) over glowing synth pads. “a = b” is similar, and has a sort of mellow Squarepusher feel.

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