Review: Given that eight years have passed since French techno stalwart Agoria released an album, it's little surprise to find that "Drift" sees him taking what he describes as "a new musical approach". On the accompanying press release, the Gallic veteran has described the set's sound as being inspired by "sitting on your sofa between your guilty pleasure and your tasteful opinion". In other words, it's a more open-minded and eclectic affair that mixes accessible, laidback vocal numbers (see the sparse tech-house-pop of opener "Embrace (feat Phoebe Killdeer)" and cheery chugger "You're Not Alone (feat Blase)" with nods towards wonky, off-kilter electronic hip-hop (STS hook-up "Call Of The Wild") and a swathe of heavier, club-leaning cuts inspired by his love of techno and Italo-disco.
Review: Back in 2008, noted experimentalist Alva Noto began a sporadic series of albums that were far more focused on dancefloor-inspired rhythms than his usual eccentric and inspiring fare. Unieqav is the third and, we're told, final part of the series. The album is apparently meant to be a sonic representation of an underwater dive, a conceptual theme which manifests itself through the storied producer's use of deep and atmospheric chords, fluid and occasionally glistening electronics, and rhythms that evoke images of ever-deeper dives into the dark, cold depths. Rhytmically, there are nods to electro, IDM, dub techno and Autechre, though the mood remains laidback and intoxicated throughout.
Review: Innervisions bosses Frank Wiedemann and Kristian Beyer return as Ame, and present their first full length entitled Dream House - described as a home listening styled journey. The German duo spent three years working on the LP and it features collaborations with legends of German electronic music such as Roedelius and Gudrun Gut, as well as Bolivian singer David Lemaitre and Jens Kuross - who was a member of Wiedemann's other venture The Howling, with Ry Cuming. Highlights include their dramatic collaboration with Matthew Herbert "The Line", the upbeat disco number "Blind Eye" (featuring Planningtorock), the chill balearica of "Positivland" and the evocative/melodic dreamscape of "No War".
Review: Borderland sees the illustrious Juan Atkins & Moritz von Oswald join forces for an album of meditative techno for Tresor. The partnership marks the first time Juan Atkins and Moritz von Oswald have directly collaborated in 20 years, though both have regularly assisted each other's work behind the scenes. Von Oswald played an important role in engineering much of Model 500's R&S catalogue, while Atkins supplied his mixing craft and two edits on Thomas Fehlmann & Moritz von Oswald's early '90s project 3MB. This eponymously titled album is skewed toward club-orientated electronic music blessed with a freedom for organic musical experimentation and expect to sink into a soundscape where melodic and textural motifs float in and out of focus.
Review: The rise of London producer Daniel Avery has been little short of staggering. Less than two years ago, he was relatively unknown beyond the confines of blogland. Now, thanks to a string of acclaimed productions and a blossoming DJ career, he's been afforded the opportunity to mix the latest instalment of the FabricLive series. Musically, FabricLive 66 offers a snapshot of where he's at now, delivering a tough but flowing mix of fuzzy electronic rhythms, stripped-back techno, gnarled acid house and tactile, next-level electronica (see Gatto Fritto's superb remix of JR Seaton's "Way Savvy"). There are also occasional forays into electroclash-ish territory (Miss Kittin, Raudive) and a smattering of Avery's own productions, making FabricLive 66 a formidable proposition.