Monday, July 14, 2014

monday moods: stream for free

happy monday evening... now here's this: a list of musical stuff that's graciously been made available to stream in full online. some new stuff, some stuff that's a little older, all alphabetically arranged stuff. and if you like it, consider buying it!

cloudface - untitled here's some fresh jams from opal tapes. the seven-tracker comes courtesy of vancouver artist cloudface (aka david reynolds), who's put out a couple other very cool releases over the past two years. i suppose you can call most of what he does spacey, subdued, analog deep house, though sometimes the pace quickens, and other times it dissolves into ambiance. either way, nice. (link)

... oh and on that opal tapes tip, nyc label affiliate patricia - whose body issues i just had to blog about a few months ago - will be coming to chicago next sunday, july 27th! he's on the bill for body talk - free the body, a show taking place at the burlington. only $5 cover; keep it in mind...

dasha rush - "ocean shy" (video) the more ambient and introspective half of dasha's recent record for deep sound channel gets an official video. given the sounds involved, it's a suitably aqueous and dreamy trip. (link)

nuel - aquaplano ltd 01 there's been much celebration about the recent reissue of donato dozzy and nuel's aquaplano sessions on spectrum spools, but let's not forget this excellent 2010 solo release from nuel, whose textured, tribal, ambient-inflected sounds are likely imprinted into the minds of certain techno heads as well. over at bandcamp you can also check out his other, electro-leaning aquaplano record. (link)

... also here's some interesting to note: nuel seemed to have gone away in recent years, but following a solo live show at tresor in berlin a few months ago, he's now booked again in berlin alongside donato dozzy for an aquaplano sessions set, and their agency has announced they'll be "available for a selected few worldwide gigs"...

voiski - smoke machine 095 voiski is a french producer of intriguingly eclectic, often wonderfully evocative techno. this live set dropped through smoke machine at the beginning of the year, and it's still fresh. (link)

yuka - episodes of yesterday a brand-new digital EP on silent season, and what looks to be the most expansive release in yuka's catalog. it's a pleasantly personal journey with hypnotic drums, warm bleeps and field recordings. (link)

Monday, July 7, 2014

T.E.W. - eighteen

here's something fresh for your late monday (or early tuesday, whatever), a new EP on's in-house label.

this one is a two-tracker called eighteen, and it comes from the roman duo T.E.W., which is short for Traveling into Esoteric World. what's up for offer here are two wonderfully melodic, slow-building acid/electro hybrids, both originally produced more than fifteen years ago. give them a try with the player below, and you can read more about the recordings, and the duo and their role as part of rome's underground electronic music scene, at the label's bandcamp shop.

Monday, June 30, 2014

RA.422 - abdulla rashim

hopefully you've tuned into alan backdrop's very nice anatomy mix from last week. now here's this, from another blog favorite... an RA podcast from abdulla rashim! it's a really dense and heavy set made up of a bunch of music made by the man himself as well as new/unreleased stuff from friends, including lots of northern electronics material. (and yes, there's a tracklist.) you should definitely go listen.

Monday, June 23, 2014

anatomy 25 - alan backdrop

alan backdrop has returned! and so has the mix series after a long hibernation...

(photo by ross)

as tuned-in readers and listeners might recall, i connected with alan backdrop, aka alessio, sometime around early 2011. he crafted the ninth anatomy mix, a lovely three-hour trip called anecumene. he's gotten steadily busier since then, and in 2013 a diverse range of his tracks were issued through a handful of labels, highlighted by his first vinyl credits and a long digital release for prologue (which i reviewed over on RA). on top of that, he's had some notable dj gigs recently, including two in london as well as his debut at tresor in berlin.

i'm really happy to welcome alessio back and have him taking care of anatomy 25, as it marks a nice milestone for the series. this mix is (unsurprisingly) shorter than his prior effort, but no less captivating. first, let's have a chat:

Hello Alessio! It has been a little over three years since we shared anatomy 09. What's up?
Hello Brian! Three years already... time flies so fast! Many changes occurred during this period, some positive, some not so positive. But in the end, I'm happy with what happened. And now I'm really excited to release the second podcast on smilecoldanatomy, the portal where I released my first podcast ever.

You seemed to be very busy releasing music last year, including a digital EP on Ekar Records along with your first vinyl EPs, for Motoguzzi and Enklav. How did you connect with those labels?
Yes, it was the year where one of my biggest dreams took shape. I finally experienced the emotion of putting a cartridge on vinyl and hearing my own music. For sure, one of the most exciting moments in my life. Actually the really busy year, where I produced a lot of music, was 2012. I spent a lot of time experimenting and trying to find a personal sound. During this process, a lot of tracks came out. Some of them, for obvious reasons, were released in the following year. So, I consider 2013 as the result of 2012.

I have known Motoguzzi Records through Cio D'Or's release "Kimono." Since I liked what they were proposing lately, I decided to send some demos. Gianmarco, the label owner, liked my music. So we started to plan. For Enklav Records, I met Dario (Chevel) at a friends reunion/course for analog instruments in Venice. We introduced each other. Then, things happened automatically. I really liked what he was doing with his label, so, when he proposed a vinyl release for me, I enthusiastically accepted.

Coming to Ekar Records, I have to say I'm really in love with that project. It was started by my dear friend and fellow countryman Enrico (Air Protection Office). We always respect and support each other, in music and in life. The collaboration was inevitable.

Of course, last year you also made your debut on Prologue with the seven-track digital release VR Plan. Tell us about VR Plan, and your connection with Prologue.
Prologue! Of course my biggest attainment. I started to buy their releases since the first one. Some of them marked my life and my path. Same for the artists who release on this label. So, you can imagine what it means for me. I had the pleasure of exchanging a few messages with Tom [label owner Tom Bonaty] a long time ago after he listened to a mix I recorded at my place. I think he kept an eye on me since that moment. I don't know exactly how, I just know that some years later he proposed for me a digital release on Prologue. I was shocked! We were supposed to release 3-4 tracks, but, since things were long to organize, I kept sending new tracks. "VR Plan" is the result of the selections we made.

How has being signed for appearances on those labels changed your approach to production? Or has it not changed?
It didn't change so much. Of course I feel a bit of "sense of responsibility," but I want to continue to make music freely. And luckily, I collaborate with labels which allow me to do that.

Can you choose one track that you are happiest to see released on vinyl?
Ramas. [youtube link]

Tell us about your recent gigs. And how was your debut at Tresor?
Recently I had a special night playing at Crime Room in Lecce. It was my first time in the south of Italy and I have to say it was really comfortable. People are so warm and hospitable... it was one of the moments where I felt proud to be Italian. The organizers put their soul and their heart in what they do and you can feel it, you can breath it. The atmosphere was really positive and people were dancing so spontaneously. So, what ask more? It was perfect.

The following night I played at my beloved UndiciZerouno in Mestre. Since it's organized by really close friends (The Noisemaker, Modes, Paola Donadi) and it takes place in the province of Venice, I can say I'm home. I missed that feeling. I had the chance to play a relaxing warm-up. Then, I really enjoyed the other sets from my friends and Stanislav Tolkachev, then in the morning I played back-to-back with The Noisemaker. Absolutely amazing! It was only the second edition, but there's an intention to start again in September. I'm so excited.

Last weekend I played at Dazed & Confuzed in London. It was the first anniversary of the party and I was so honored to be in the lineup with outstanding artists. I get goosebumps thinking about the atmosphere of the party and the music... I was totally amazed by DJ Pete's set. I couldn't stop smiling and saying to my friends "He is a monster." Then, when the sun has set, Marco Shuttle started a deep and hypnotic journey… damn, what a party! I could spend so many words, but I couldn't express the feelings I had.

My debut at Tresor was great. I was the first one on the running order, so, I had the chance to build the atmosphere inside the club before the door opening. I'm an emotional person, so this helped me to relax. I enjoyed every moment and every person who got in the club and came to the dancefloor. Plus, a lot of my dear friends were there, beside me. It was a really special night. About the performance... there's always more to learn! But I'm pretty happy because the people were following my set dancing and smiling. That's what I need when I spin records.

What's next on the music front for Alan Backdrop? (new releases, gigs, etc)
I confirmed a new release for Ekar Records. We are planning everything and it will be out really soon. I will play two sets (ambient and techno) at Freqs Of Nature Festival in Germany between the 4th and 6th of July. Then, I'll be in Belgium on the 27th of July for the Huismuziek party at Warehouse O'cool with Synthek.

Finally, tell us about this mix!
Since I know smilecoldanatomy allows me to be totally free, I decided to record a predominantly ambient/soundscape mix, imagining landing on a mysterious island, walking through it for some days, feeling all the emotions it gives you, and then, going back to the boat and leaving. I hope you enjoy the journey!

and that's that. 70 minutes of lush, patiently building, increasingly rhythmic ambient sounds. all in all another excellent contribution from alessio, and (i think) a good way to get the series moving again here. thanks to alessio for returning and doing a fantastic job with anatomy 25. it's been a pleasure getting to know him, and i'm happy to see his music reaching wider audiences. you can keep track of him on facebook and RA.

oh, and thanks to all the artists who have joined the fun here over the years, and to anyone who's ever found anything of interest here. i hope you enjoy this mix!

Saturday, June 21, 2014

now hear this

it's a rainy grey evening here in chicago. here is some musical stuff i've been enjoying lately:

stanislav tolkachev at dommune he is one of my favorite producers, and i would say one of the most interesting voices in techno today. there's really nothing that compares to tolkachev's frenetic, polyrhythmic style, as far as i can tell. a few days ago he appeared on dommune to play an hour-long dj set of his own material, and unsurprisingly it's fantastic. fast, angular, sinuous, tense... fucking relentless!

yuka at tresor, august 2013 the globetrotting russian dj/producer (and like tolkachev, a fullpanda label affiliate) recently uploaded this recording of her dj'ing at tresor in berlin last august, for the fullpanda-focused party all you need is ears. included in the mix are raw, hypnotic techno tracks from the likes of dino sabatini, rrose and AnD (it's their track on krill music, a standout in a catalog that's otherwise meh to me). go to soundcloud or check it below.

DSCRD live at strichka festival this group, a key part of paris's tuned-in DEMENT3D label crew, construct dark and dense electronic soundscapes. about a month ago they played kiev, ukraine's strichka festival, and you can hear their live set on soundcloud... or right here.

stave - former (free remixes!) chicago producer stave turned in one of my favorite albums of 2013, reform, and later in the year came this pack of remixes of "tower 9," perhaps the most direct and aggressive cut on the album. my pick of the bunch comes from COiN, who has put out a few interesting solo releases on opal tapes. click here or stream below. ALSO: stave will be playing a contort event in berlin next month; i think (not sure) this will be his berlin debut. to any local heads reading this: i'd say his set should be a must-see.

... and you can also click here for bigger/better versions of that awesome photograph of the forbidden city. so, that's it from me for now. happy weekend!