Review: Despite his self-proclaimed hatred of nightclubs, Sheffield misery-guts Richard "Crooked Man" Barratt is rather good at making dance music. That's not to say that the former Sweet Exorcist and All Seeing I man's second album, "Crooked House", is a riotous romp full of wonky, low-slung, industrial-tinged house and techno slammers, though. While rooted in Yorkshire's traditionally raw, alien, bleep-laden and bass-heavy take on those styles, the album's genius lies in Barratt's ability to write surprisingly soulful, off-kilter songs, co-produced by fellow veterans Mick Ward and David Lewin, and voiced by some seriously talented singers (Amy Douglas and Pete Simpson included). The results are undeniably magical, with "Here On Earth", "Walls", "Take It All Away", "Every Killer Needs a Friend" and trippy "Echo Loves Narcissus" amongst the highlights.
Review: A year or so on from the release of American Dream, LCD Soundsystem's much-hyped comeback album, James Murphy has decided to commission a swathe of fresh remixes. The first mixes to land come from ESP Institute boss and former NYC dweller Lovefingers. He brilliantly plays around with "Oh Baby", first serving up a full vocal version drenched in dub delay and mind-altering effects that makes much of selected lyrical phrases, chugging drums, bubbly electronic motifs and the original's familiar piano refrain. Turn to the flip for a largely vocal-free dub that's even more trippy and far-out in tone, with the now familiar piano riff taking pride of place throughout.
Review: Innervisions co-founder and tech-house behemoth Dixon is the latest remixer to get his hands on a track from LCD Soundsystem's 2017 album, American Dream. His version of "I Used To" is closer in feel to James Murphy and company's original version than his own grandiose and melodious tech-house epics, though the Berlin producer's decision to include some seriously epic breakdowns and build-ups suggests that the mix could not only land with his audience, but become something of an anthem in clubs around the globe. Arguably even better is flipside bonus cut "Pulse (V1)", a wonderfully melodious and atmospheric instrumental that sounds like it was inspired by NYC minimalists such as Steve Reich and Philip Glass.