Tuesday, December 31, 2013

End Of Year Thing

Is there ever really a bad year regarding the state of house, techno and its myriad offshoots? Starting off with a rhetorical question my seem like I’m hedging my bets but I’m going to nail my colours to the mast and say no. In spite of some periods of stasis, and what feels like a pervasive feeling of artistic stagnation in general, some will always rise up and, with the bit between their teeth, continue to lead and inspire. As far as 2013 is concerned, Joey Anderson stands out a mile for me. I’d heard his embryonic output but it was during this year that he really blossomed. His ethereal house vision is one at odds with the waking world, occupying a twilit world of chasms and dreams. He leaves an awful lot up to the listener, but the imagination can be even more powerful under the correct conditions, which  his soundscapes encourage to flourish.

Over the last twelve months I’ve refamiliarised myself with a lot of the old masters, ie: the standard bearers of Detoit and Chicago, as well as the essence of what created this autonomous house music zone a lot of us live within twenty four hours a day. I could be doing a lot more though, and have been thinking of ways in which to make myself more valuable to the community. My lifestyle and location  isn’t very conducive to participating at the level I’d like to so maybe the time is right to delve deeper and to see exactly what that brings. I’ve been wanting to start a label for a long time so in 2014 I plan to do the groundwork for this and to take advice where I can. The idea, above and beyond the quality of the music, is to have a strong visual aesthetic and an enigmatic emphasis. It’ll probably go tits upon no time, but one must give it a go.

The house/techno divide has never sounded more attractive and in sync. However, this isn’t meant to indicate some sort of rampant homogeneity, rather a symbiotic relationship which continues to flourish and evolve, albeit at a relatively slow metabolic rate. I’ve reflected on this before but it’s worth saying again. Even though great music continues to be made every year, floor-based electronica has, like every genre before it, pushed itself into a creative corner but, unlike every genre before it, seems to escape a lot of negativity due to its delivery and reception. Thank god for the virtual world, for which machine music is particularly suited to, inasmuch as style over content compensates for crap. The amount of DJs and producers one reads about, with incredibly expensive set-ups, but no tangible discography to speak of is overwhelming and depressing. These are the people who populate the likes of DJ TechTools, and Digital DJ Tips, clogging the forums in the name of creativity but producing bugger all artistically, while inhabiting the worlds of Beatport and Juno Download, the Gog and Magog of mediocrity. Not to say you can’t buy good stuff thereabouts, but you know what I mean.

So, after Joey Anderson where are we? Legowelt had another fantastic year but could be going a little stale. His output and back catalogue is peerless, but now he’s popping up everywhere he may need to rethink his approach. Rrose is someone who feels like the real deal, preserving a sentient anonymity under the auspices of a purloined identity, an obvious comparison would be Terre Thaemlitz, but as I’m not well-qualified enough to dig any deeper I’ll stop there. 
DJ TLR and Ben UFO are two selectors whose sets I’ve been hammering over the past year, both of whose labels, 
Hessle Audio and Creme Organisation, kept on raising the bar and refusing to compromise. Indeed, it was a bit of a renaissance for Creme. as the’ve been around for a lot longer than most of their new-found fans probably realised. L.I.E.S. continued to have another great year, and almost certainly pushed Creme’s sound indirectly. Ron Morelli’s debut album was cooly received, however; although I doubt he’s quite the opportunist that many take him to be. Downwards, Stroboscopic Artefacts and Dolly also made an impression this year, as did White Material of course, pain in the arse to buy without taking out a second mortgage though.

Favourite mixes of this year are the Steffi and Virginia double-header from Beats In Space
Joey Anderson’s Juno Plus podcast, Conforce’s RA offering, Domenic Capello’s warm-up set from late summer, various Electronic Explorations mixes, Rrose & Svreca being particularly memorable, John Talabot from Ten Days Off, plus anything I’ve posted on here in 2013. As you can see I’m not one for end-of-year lists, the whole process of distilling the ambience of one’s life into bite-size chunks has never been my forte. However, what follows should give an idea of at least a portion of it. 

Some Highlights From 2013 In No Particular order:

Happy New Year everybody!

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Thee Kaleidoscopic Rebellion: 28/12/13

Last Night's Tracklist:

Western Electric - Lord Of The Isles (Permanent Vacation)
Biscotto & Chimpanzee - Danton Eeprom (Infine)
Saturnight - Phlash (Archive)
Jazz Militia - Rick Wade (FINA Records)
Cool Running (Gargantuan Remix) - Tik & Tok (Survival)
Verhexen - Kris Wadsworth (Hypercolour)
Snake Bile Wine (Trevino Remix 2) - Simian Mobile Duisco (Delicatessen)
Majestic Alchemy - Legowelt (Crem Org)
We Burnt Time - Torn Hawk (Valcrond Video)
Okada - Rachel & DJ Sotofett (Hotline Recordings)
Insider - Madteo (Morphine Doser)
Depressurization - Drexciya (Clone classic Cuts)
The Illusion Of Choice (Donato Dozzy Remix) - Lucy (Stroboscopic Artefacts)
Slit - James Ruskin (Blueprint)
A Modern Romance - A Vision Of Love (Avian)
Rhythm Track 39 - Beau Wanzer (CCCP)
Get On - Evil Fred (H2 Recordings)
Be My Own Pupil - Martyn (3024)
Feelin’ - Florian Kupfer (L.I.E.S.)

Sunday, December 15, 2013

December Chart

Fall Off Face - Joey Anderson (Dekmantel)

Desolate Figures - John Heckle (Tabernacle)

The Inner Plains - Ttam Renat (Mood Hut)

Beat Session - XI (Sued)

Dungeon Jams - Dungeon Acid (Zodiac 44)

The Dancer - K Alexi (K Klassik)

Chemtrails - Florent M (Gotwax!)

Incite - Obsolete Music Technology (Emphasis)

Mysterious - OB Ignitt (FXHE)

Nemesis Rising - DJ Spider (Plan B)

Once again, in no particular order of preference. An end-of-year thing should surface before January.

Sunday, December 01, 2013

Thee Kaleidoscopic Rebellion: 30/11/13

Themes Of Fukoyama - Dollkraut (Tape)
Swamp Fever - Marieu/The Analogue Cops (Hypercolour Ltd)
Alarm - Robert Hood (M-Plant)
All Little Things (Fred P Reshape Spirit Dub) - Wareika (Visionquest)
Body Music - Young Male (Work Them Records)
Dream State - Miles Sagnia (Atmospheric Existence)
Eyes Are Blind - DJ Red (BPitch)
The Orbit (Trevino Remix) - Staffan Lindberg (Dolly Dubs)
Say You Won’t Ever (Larry heard Club Mix) - Wallflower (Rebirth)

Where Is Rony Douglas - Philip Gorbachev (Comeme)
Seven Days - Boo Williams (Goldmin Music)
Subatomi - R Zone (R Zone)
On High In Translucent Tomorrows - Hazylujah (Meda Fury)
You Saved My Soul (Sisters & Brothers) (Innerspace Halflife Remix) - Anaxander (Dame Music)
Galician Dream Sequence - Shadowlust (L.I.E.S.)
Bera Range EP - Gunner Haslam (Argot)
Panoramic - Cosmin TRG (Running Back)
Hearts & Lungs - Andy Mac (Idle Hands)
Zygote - Dopplereffekt (Leisure System)

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Bad Timing 12th Birthday With Nochexxx & Container At The Portland Arms, Cambridge 25/11/13

It was a Monday night but I thought, “what the heck” and drove into Cambridge from semi-rural Suffolk with an artist friend in tow. The Portland is one of the better venues which Cambridge has to offer, but it’s small. To all intents and purposes it is a normal pub, but once inside you wend your way into a recently-refurbished space which apparently has a capacity of 200. I’m glad it wasn’t full, as it would have felt very claustrophobic, having said that the turn out was pitiful, Monday night or not.

Once at the venue Mr Harry Sword arrived and the three of us, momentarily distracted by the Villa v West Brom game on the telly, went from the bar to the “space”. We’d been told that the “live music” would start at 9, but at 9:15 nothing had happened, and there were only 14 or 15 of us,  the majority of which seemed to be Bad Timing's mates, and at various points in the proceedings, seemed more interested in tweeting and texting. This didn’t seem to deter Nochexxx though, as he began to DJ a set exclusively composed of his own dubplates. His set covered a myriad of bases but mostly struck an idiosyncratic note which blended electro with techno to deft, original effect. His music is built on shifting sands and was ably accompanied by visuals of a high standard, having been made by Plastic Horse initially, I think, to accompany ‘Charro’ which was released a couple of years ago. They couldn’t save him from an errant fire alarm though, which completely screwed up his flow in one fell swoop, in addition he had mixer problems, apparently relating to a freak confrontation with the reverse cross fader. Whatever the case, during his short, interrupted set I heard enough to convince myself that I’d like second helpings. Maybe a DJ set of other people’s material next time but still ploughing the same groggy furrow.

Things were running late at this point and due to noise regulations, everything had to stop at 11pm. This gave Container barely 30 minutes to entertain us with his brand of  thrash-inflected techno. There’s a peculiarly acoustic sound to his live output which initially feels coherent but is apt to go off on occasional tangents. In any case, it was an interesting contrast to the wandering riddims of Nochexxx, and was anything but predictable. He’s a tall chap is Container, and the sight of him hunched over a table, Quasimodo-like, with a TR909 on it was quite amusing, particularly once he got into his rhythm and started skanking behind his hardware, occasionally coming up for air to have the odd swig of beer. This never distracted from the music though which was excellent, a massive racket erupting from a minimum of hardware which had an organic cohesion but embraced chaos.

The one negative about the night, apart from Nochexxx’s technical difficulties, was the general organisation. I found it a little dispiriting to say the least that, on a night celebrating the 12th anniversary of a collective known for putting on alternative music events in and around Cambridge, only about 25 - 30 people showed up. How serious Bad Timing are regarding promoting their soirees I don’t know, but a night of this stature, Monday or not, should have been much better attended. “That’s Cambridge for you” said my erstwhile companion Mr Sword, and unfortunately he’s right. A city in which the main university’s students make very little real attempt to integrate themselves with the general population, and have their own entertainment on site really needs to start taking a few more risks and arrest its complacency. Reversing centuries of tradition isn’t going to happen, but the staidness effects everyone to a degree. Compared with Brighton, a town at the polar opposite side of London, it’s in the dark ages. Brighton may be bigger, but if Cambridge’s majority student population mingled better, then size wouldn’t matter.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Gemini aka Spencer Kinsey

Some of the great man's mixes courtesy of various providers on Soundcloud.

Check this article for some info on the great man. A lot of his stuff is being rereleased at the moment, which is good as the originals go for stupid money, (Discogs natch). The labels who first released the tunes aren't best pleased though.

Eric Cloutier

Eric Cloutier - Input Selector 5 Years à La Machine du Moulin Rouge from Collectif la fumée onVimeo.

I'm a sucker for watching DJs perform the apparently innocuous task of playing music, so here's a close-up of someone who, for me at least, is currently one of the best in the business, along to a link to one of his recent podcasts.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

November Chart

Random Variables - Population One (Reduction)

Down You Will Get - D Ribeiro (Midlight)

Come Behind The Tree - Joey Anderson (Syncrophone)

Imbroglios 4/4 - Pepe Braddock (Atavisme)

XOX Tools Part One - Annie Errez (Strobewax)

Sex, Drugs & House - Marquis Hawkes (Dixon Avenue Basement Jams)

Eyedeal EP - Chris Mitchell (Unlearn)

Driftwood - Rivet (Skudge)

Y2K EP - Staffen Lindberg (Dolly Dubs)

Scorpio Rising - Jay Daniel (Sound Signature)

October went quick innit? Here’s a selection of stuff for the bridge between autumn and winter.

Monday, November 04, 2013

Le Jockey's Live Show


A little slow on the uptake with this one, but better late than never. A belated post and appreciative nod to Johny for this very chilled and weighty live offering. Sorry for not posting this sooner. Have to get you on the radio again soon mate.

Sunday, November 03, 2013

Cacophonous Bling Podcast 4: Aubrey

The second half of last night's show was given over to a mix from one of UK house & techno's most unsung heroes, Aubrey. I shot a few questions over to him in his south coast bolt hole and he was kind enough to send me the answers back to accompany the music.

Have you always lived in Portsmouth, or in the general area?

Pretty much, but lived in Valencia Spain for 9 years and I may be moving back in 2014.

What do you feel have been the advantages of living there?

Portsmouth is ok, as it's so close to London, just over 1 hour. I like to live by the sea, so it's ideal here for me.

Solid Groove's first release was over twenty years ago. What inspired you to start it up, who drew the logo and how would you describe its output?

I started Solid Groove as I was sending demos to labels and getting knocked back all the time. I trusted my product so the only way to do it was to start my own label, and that's the same with Dot. My friend Sam Foot designed the art and Logo. I think it was based on a crazy lab technician from old Marvel comics.

If I remember correctly, your music and that of others from the Portsmouth area, like Mark Ambrose and Josh Brent, (correct me if I'm wrong, please) was distributed by Shady Acorns on the Isle of White. How did such a fertile scene come about?

Well Solid Groove had three different distributors over its life, I think Mark just had a passion for music and was willing to take a risk and not be bothered about releasing strange and different things, but my other labels Dark and Textures and Super Disco Fakes were all from Shady Acorns.

You've also recorded for a lot of other labels: Offshoot, Mosaic and Ferox to name but a few. Who do you think you've done your best work for?

He he… to be honest, some of the newer things and unreleased things coming soon are sounding fresher than the older stuff, I can't really name one thing off the top of my head. Mosaic is starting again and I have just remixed Ed Davenport for that, seems like it's all come back around.

What are your musical roots? How did you get into making house and techno and why did you stop for seven or eight years between 2003-2010?

Hmm, Musical roots… 100% Hip Hop. I got a pair of decks when I was 12, not Technics but old belt drive things with no pitch, so I learned the hard way, until I could get my first job and save for my Technics and Bose Speakers when I was 16. That was the best day of my life after 4 years with these horrible disco decks, but yeah Hip Hop, and Breaks and Beats, used to spend days beat juggling and scratching. So when I got the Technics mixing was just so easy. Also a lot of 60's Jazz and the krautrock stuff . . .  I was 15 when I heard Washing Machine by Larry Heard, which changed everything, but I still buy a lot of Hip Hop and strange stuff for personal home use.

When for you, was techno/house's most fertile period, and where are we now?

To be honest, I think techno’s aways been amazing, and now i think it's more exiting than ever. So many talented new artists and a deep heavy sound. Of course you have the late 80s stuff, and early 90s stuff is really special, but I try not to live in the past too much and always look forward.

You've more recently found a home on Komplex de Deep, as well as another one of your labels, Dot. Has your approach to making music changed much since you started again a few years ago?

Well yes, a lot. I used to have a huge studio with a huge 24 track desk, but sold a lot of it to sort out some problems I had. Now I work with a small set up, no mixing desk and a few outboard bits. Having said that I miss the desk and the 909 and I’m going to look into getting a desk again in the next year or so.

What are you interests outside music?

Cooking is my no 1 hobby, I love it and spend time looking for ingredients, spices etc, and photography is my second love. Skateboarding and Mountain biking come up pretty close as well, and travel.

How difficult is it to do what you do in this age of austerity?

Well there ain't really any money to be made running the label, to be honest I do it because I love it, and of course there are the odd gigs here and there, so things could be worse, let’s put it that way.

How would you describe your life when not making music?

Walking the dog, taking photos and cooking :)

Could you give us an all-time, cross-genre top five?

Hard one this…

Johnny Hammond - Gamblers Life LP (Salvation) 1975

Electro Crucial (Streetsounds Records)

Audio Tech (Juan Atkins) - I'm your Audio Tech (Express Records) 1987

Quasimoto - The Further Adventures of Lord Quas (Stones Throw) 2005

Fingers Inc - Another Side LP (Jack Trax) 1988

To be honest there are too many to mention….

Thee Kaleidoscopic Rebellion: 2/11/13


Some Tracks - MGUN (Third Ear)
Seven Locks (In Dub) - A Sagittariun (Elastic Dreams)
Haywire - Pittsburgh Track Authority (Work Them)
Welcome Dance - Jovonn (Dogmatik)
Strawberries & Kream - Chicago Damn (Chicago Damn)
Gene Silencing - Dopplereffekt (Leisure System)
Wildlyfe Genesis - Xosar (Creme Organisation)
Days Of Persistence - Legowelt (L.I.E.S)
Slope - Joe (Hessle Audio)

Odyssey Of Endless Hope - Murphy Jax (Chiwax)

The playlist is for the first hour of the show, the second hour was mixed by Aubrey. No track list available I'm afraid.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Sunday, October 06, 2013

Validation Part 4

Before and during our last radio show, myself and Monsewer Harry Sword chatted a lot regarding the transparency of music and the influences apparent on certain artists. Lots of stuff came up for discussion, amongst which was current plat du jour L.I.E.S. It's hard to define why this label, instead of Creme Organization, for example, should have made such an impact. Right place right time I suppose. However, feeling tangibly eclectic while having a genre - defying sound could also be a plus. Whether planned or not, L.I.E.S. and other labels like The Trilogy Tapes, WT and Hinge Finger have come along at a time when glossy pap malingerers masquerading as underground standard bearers have reached saturation point. It's a timely intervention and one which comes redolent with credibility. 

Because it's clear that when listening to the music on these labels, and others of the same ilk, that the music makers listen, and have a sonic heritage which doesn't just involve house, techno, disco and clubbing. The DIY aesthetic feels fresh again and, while it may be heavily stylised in places, does exude a knowledge which comes complete with its own unwritten system of values. It's also a visual style 'ting too. The music speaks volumes but the artists are, to a degree, invisible and not really that arsed as far as following fashion is concerned but the beauty of that is of course that they have, in the process, cultivated their very own brand identity. It just remains to be seen how soon we'll have to wait for them to relocate to Ibiza for the summer.

It's difficult to ascertain the influences which go into the making of the Ostgut Three's music, even though I like it in varying degrees. Ben Klock, Marcel Dettmann and Marcel Fengler each have a laboratorial approach to composition which doesn't seem to integrate itself with any obvious outside impact. It's techno, and its influences are techno. Sure, Luke Slater seems to be an omnipresent factor but beyond him, and a very prominent European take on the genre, it's not easy to read much else in. There's a dirt and grit which ebbs and flows, and then the converse, clean lines which rise to the occasion and pummel away at a great rate of knots. As selectors Dettmann is probably the most diverse, Klock the most predictable and Fengler potentially the best. They're all technically superb, but there's still the feeling that they could be so much better if they each went out on a limb a little more.

Monday, September 30, 2013


Here it is.

DJ Mixes Revisited: Sheffield Mix Sessions Mixed By Chris Duckenfield - V/A (Turbo)

One of life's great mysteries, at least as far as I'm concerned, is that Chris Duckenfield isn't held in much higher esteem than he probably already is. I supposed he's relatively content to remain in the shadows, having more than played his part in the growth and cultivation, not just of the UK house sound but the wider one generally. Swag, his duo with Richard Brown, released so many seminal tracks over an approximate ten year period, from the mid-nineties onwards, that they were impossible to ignore. Characterised by a tough percussive backbone and a healthy electronic take on what are often more organic components, every one was a must buy and still puts much of todays pretenders to shame. I only ever caught Chris DJing once, at some party in a pub on All Saints' Road during the Notting Hill Carnival, but have listened to countless sets online and, of course, the mix now in question. 

 And it's a well-paced and beautifully-balanced piece of work, surprisingly released on Tiga's Turbo label. It's been around since 2001 now and has easily stood the test of time and listening to it again takes me back to what seems like a distant age when I went out and physically bought most of what is in the mix. Highlights for me are Ibex's 'The Last Laugh' which was released when most of what came out on Planet E was still something to buy on sight. 'Beautiful (Feel The Beauty Mix)' by Ground Level, whose Larry Heard parody comes off as being just as good as the man himself, 'Why Did You Do That?' by Tribalation, aka Grant Dell and Gareth Oxby, sticking their oar in on behalf of Croydon. . .  Nigel Hayes starts the ball rolling in earnest with 'Shriek' and Morgan Geist pops up twice, as the remixer of Daniel Wang's excellent opener '24 To Vector' and also with 'N'Arret Pas'. Short of mentioning everything which is on here, I'll just pick one more; Deja Vu's excellent 'Sex In The Dark', Barry Ashworth and Blaine Scanlon at the controls. 

 If you haven't heard this yet, then get on it when you can. As an example of selection and equilibrium it has yet to be surpassed, and it's also a valuable time capsule which highlights a lot of what was good about UK house at the beginning of the century.

01 Daniel Wang – 24 To Vector Z (Morgan Geist Commuter Mix) 
Remix – Morgan Geist 3:30 
02 Marschmellows – Soulpower (Jazzanova Rework) 
Remix – Jazzanova 5:14 
03 Only Child – Space Disco Latino 2:58 
04 Nigel Hayes – Shriek 4:57 
05 Deja Vu – Sex In The Dark 4:25 
06 Morgan Geist – Narret Pas 2:20 
07 Ground Level – Beautiful (Feel The Beauty Mix) 
Remix – Rick Garcia 5:24 
08 Swirl People – We Are 2:58 
09 Ibex – The Last Laugh 6:06 
10 Detox Twins – Loved Shared (Lil' Mark's Dub) 3:10 
11 Symbiosis – Oxygen 2:55 
12 Si Brad – Conapt (Dub) 4:03 
13 Tribalation – Why Did You Do That? 4:03 
14 Simon – Free At Last (Instrumental) 3:25 
15 Crispin J. Glover – Thin Ice 4:18 
16 Kerri "Kaoz 6:23" Chandler – Grass Cutter 2:53 
17 Wagon Cookin' – Moonstreams (2 Left Feet Dub) 5:16 
18 Jerome Sydenham & Dennis Ferrer – Kòkò Pt. 1 (Demo Dub) 4:05

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Thee Kaleidoscopic Rebellion: 21/9/13

So, last night myself and Harry had a very enjoyable two hours, playing music we like in the hope that others would like it too. The time passed very quickly and we agreed that it was so good that we would team up together in two weeks' time and do it all over again. Such pair work is quite unprecedented so we'll make sure that the next show is every bit as good as this one was. Here's what we played. The file for this show will be added asap.

Harry's Mix:

Above The Cherry Moon - Joey Anderson (Ave 66)
Get It Off my Chest - Jus' Ed (Underground Quality)
Falling - Vereker (L.I.E.S.)
State Of No State - Fred P (The Corner)
Dog Fight - Big Strick (7 Days)
Pearls Robbery - The Analogue Cops (Restoration)
Stereo Systems - Levon Vincent (Novel Sound)
Hiatus - Rolando (Delsin)
Splitting Particles - Fred P (The Corner)
NY Fizzzz - October & Appleblim (Schmorgasbord)
Livity 04 - Asusu (Livity Sound)
Mandate - Forward Strategy Group (Perc Trax)
High Heel Sleaze - Svenghali's Ghost (L.I.E.S.)
Lovestomp - Crisp (Sex Tags Mania)
Tomorrow Is The Day - Kyle Hall (Moods & Grooves)
Fly City - John Heckle (Music For Mathematics)

Second Hour:

Emotion Number 8 - Sequence Report (Tevo Howard Recordings)
The Drift - Lionheart Brothers (Full Pupp)
MMF feat Berenice - Esther Duijn & Steady Douglas (Tact)
Trading Places - Sir Lord Comixx (Abstract Dance)
Another Lifetime - Trevino (The Nothing Special)
Rocky - Tin Man (Pomelo)
Earth & The Geo Cosmos - Jeff Mills (Axis)
Monk's Mound - Huerco S (Software)
The Widowmaker - Bodyjack (Hypercolour Digital)
Gimme A Light - Greg Beato (L.I.E.S.)

Thee Kaleidoscopic Rebellion: 21/9/13 by Cacophonousbling on Mixcloud

Sunday, September 15, 2013

September Chart

Beau Wanzer - Beau Wanzer (L.I.E.S)

Earth Tones 4 - V/A (Soul People)

Simmetria Della Stringhe - Marco Shuttle (Eerie)

Cosmic Fluke - STL (Something)

Dragon Under - Neil Landstrumm (Sneaker Social Club)

 Get Ready EP - Brooks Mosher (Release Sustain)

Morphosis Variations - Charles Cohen (Morphine)

 Doe Maar Diep EP - Duijn & Douglas  (Tact Recordings)

Soul Music - Special Request (Houndstooth)

Exclamation - R Zone (R Zone)