Tuesday 30 August 2016

Tips And Tricks

Remember how I was saying that I had a real soundcloud drought going on? Well I found a couple workarounds for that. Sure, a lot of shit may be locked behind soundcloud go now meaning you only get 30 seconds or so of material, but there are some cool folks out there that have yet to fall to the wave of it.

Take Four Tet here, now I should say that I can never make my mind up about Four Tet, like Plaid and so many others it tends to be hit and miss with me. And when Oneohtrix Point Never gets to rework something now that is *very* hit and miss given his usual styles and all. But the ed result is actually pretty nice even if it doe stake a while to get going.

Now the second trick that's helped a whole lot. Instead of going after the usual spate of artists, go diggin' in your library for semi-obscure techno producers and see if they're still kicking. Luckily for me, Mijk Van Dijk is, here with a remix of Billie Ray Martin. It's kinda funny too, in a world where soundcloud is limiting people to 30 secs of songs, here Mijk is calling a 6 minute slice a 'snippet'. The tune itself is very nice, chock full of bass but still quite minimal, which is a tad unusual for me, but then again Mijk has always been one of the few minimal folk who I dig.

-Claude Van Foxbat

Sunday 28 August 2016

The SubmitHub Roundup, Vol. 1

It should come as no surprise to frequent readers that I sometimes meander when it comes to getting things done. Whether its making posts to remind me that I still need to check out certain artists, or even posts in general sometimes I wouldn't exactly say I have an amazing track record. But alas, the soundcloud drought was getting to me and I was itching to find new ways of finding things, enter an email I got back in may.

Submithub is the name, and cutting out my legwork is its game. Instead of crawling soundcloud feeds we get people coming to us, which can be a bit of a burden but it's been smooth sailing so far. Serving up the first proper submission was the above, which is giving me that early Pretty Lights hip hop style nostalgia, and will feel right at home between the other "You"'s in my collection from Bibio and Gold Panda.

One thing I'm also learning to be is less cynical. It kinda naturally happens after years of email bombardment for whatever promo list has scrubbed your deets that week. Having a visual helps (even if it is still, and it's also I'm a massive sucker for the old cyan/magenta scheme). Not too hot on the treatment of the vocals here but I'll be damned if the frantic piano stabs and noodling around 2:10 don't take me right back to the early 00's dance days.

You also get treated to some pretty unusual stuff too, and not in a bad way either. Much like me father before me I do like for there to be some strings in my electronics. It's something we've covered a little before, Admittedly it's usually in the form of Venetian Snares' Rossz Csillag Alatt Született or SomethingALaMode which we covered way back in 2010. Certainly wouldn't mind more experimentation with the sound, moody Trip Hop and strings are a match made in heaven.

And there you have it, as such expect more frequent updates with this kinda thing now that I am free of the shackles of soundcloud digging. Expect the usual programming with a few of these sprinkled through out, now to see about sorting the next big project - the site redesign, stay tuned!

-Claude Van Foxbat

Friday 26 August 2016

Vintage Oizo (Part 2)

Moving more into familiar territory for part 2, just one year on from his debut #1 EP, Oizo's output here should be incredibly familiar for anyone with any knowledge of either Flat Beat or Analog Worms Attack. From the artwork down to the structure and sounds, Oizo is really finding his groove when it comes to slightly off kilter Electro stuff.

And he wastes no time letting you know that, with a turntablism infused rework of Kirk from the #1EP, something that'd later appear on the Analog Worms Attack LP, only with later Ed Banger bloke Feadz on the scratching duties.

And it's not long before we get stuck into that crunchy Electro goodness that made Flat Beat, in fact when Levi's jumped on the Oizo and Flat Eric hype train for a series of advertisements, this is one of the tunes that featured. With Eric making the electro burbles with his mouth of course.

That's not to say that the minimal edge from the previous EP is all gone however, it's there a little bit on M-Seq but Tweeter Trouble has it going on in spades. Speaking of tweeters too, this one's a pretty good shout if you're looking to test the bass side of your setup. I have it playing now at about 3/4 the usual volume and it's still rattling my desk a fair bit.

It's not all gritty mind you, there's some little funky side pieces going on as well. This one feels like a precursor to the very Oizo titled Last Night A DJ Killed My Dog, which I suppose is very fitting in itself given the title of it.

-Claude Van Foxbat

Tuesday 23 August 2016

Vintage Oizo (Part 1)

With Mr. Oizo's new LP All Wet looming on the horizon I'd like to take a minute or two to dive into his extensive back catalogue. Now of course most of you are familiar with Flat Beat, and Flat Eric has been a constant presence in his work, even appearing in pixellated format on the cover of All Wet, but we're going to a time before all that. Back to Oizo's debut in fact, with a litte EP simply called #1.

This is 1997, a good couple of years or so before Flat Beat and Analog Worms Attack, and the most striking thing of all about this EP is the difference to the sound that's prevalent on both those. Those a whole lot of straight up conventional house tunes on here with perhaps a little bit of a minimal streak too. Which, while a far cry from his later work are still solid.

Not to say there aren't more than a few hints of the direction he would take, immediately after Kirk you're greeted with the same sinister electro come hip hop that ran throughout Analog Worms Attack. It's not quite there yet, which is a given if the year in the mix title is anything to go by, but the rough drums and scattered samples are definitely hallmarks that would come up again.

There's some middle ground too, upon revisiting I could easily see Ke-Ele appearing as a B-side to one of the Analog Worms Attack singles, though it sounds a lot smoother than anything on either there or this EP so far. It's aged incredibly well, and I definitely recommend both this and the full EP if you're into Oizo.

Signing off with the penultimate track, Krumpf is the opposite of all I've just said. There's no hints of the future Oizo to be had here, and the whole thing does sound like a late 90's house record. But that's not to say it's bad (I actually dig it a whole lot), even if it's not for you it's still interesting to hear, especially considering it in comparison to Oizo's releases since.

-Claude Van Foxbat

Sunday 21 August 2016

Belated Sunday Service

I done fell off again. There's been a few bumps to the usual routine in general, but man this soundcloud drought is real and is messing up my usual MO. Luckily I can count on our boy Celadon City to consistently provide on that front. Admittedly it's only a one track one this time but come back in a couple of days because I'm lining up a good old fashioned ilictronix two part post! Until then, have an easy Sunday with the always smooth (if slightly downtmepo this time) Celadon City.

-Claude Van Foxbat

Tuesday 16 August 2016

All Turned Around

Ellsworth Kelly - Cite (1951)

Not really feelin' it as of late, almost missed posting again among other things. So I'm just putting together some tunes that are apt for the time. Starting with Midge Ure's The Man Who Sold The World cover, a recent addition to my rankings but a solid entry nonetheless. Surprisingly modern sounding too considering it's from '82.

Been on a bit of a Blade Runner kick again too, the super expanded edition of the OST is a joy to listen to, with 36 tunes worth of material to get stuck into. This one's from the 'Inspired By' section of the expanded soundtrack, which normally I'd scoff at if it were anyone other than Vangelis himself doing it. A lovely listen too, not too sure that sax holds up as well as the rest of it, but who knows these days with vapourwave being a thing.

On a similar note, the old Artificial Intelligence series from Warp is crying out ot be the soundtrack to something vaguely retro-futuristic. Autechre's entry to the series and their debut LP Incunbula may have fallen out of favour with the band themselves, but I still love that distinctly of the era techno it has going on.

-Claude Van Foxbat

Friday 12 August 2016

Back From The Grave

Hoo boy it has been a while. I guess I missed my semi annual track dump after all eh? Long story short I did some dumb shit on my birthday and it took me out of commission until today, but I am back with an array of recovery songs. Lessgo.
Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec - At The Rat Mort (1899)

Think I mentioned in passing a long time ago but it bears repeating now, I urge you all to make a sick/hungover/headache playlist because sometimes when you have a migraine you don't want throbbing TB-303s to come into the mix. It's done me wonders so far and I thought I'd repost one of my latest additions to it.

Bit of a diversion now, wanted to find a good streamer of this but soundcloud is garbo now. Regardless, here's some of the new Massive Attack. There's nothing like the moody instrumentals of the Massive lads and Hope Sandoval's forever melancholy delivery to ease the weekend in. I hope she becomes a frequent fixture of theirs in future, had my eye on her since the Mazzy Star days, and her parts on Heligoland were golden too.

Shan't all be doom and gloom and bring your Friday down mind. Here's another more uplifting Hotline tune to see you out. It's quite smooth considering what else there is on offer here, almost the spiritual successor to Jasper Byrne's Miami from the first OST. That'll be all, and it shouldn't be so long till I see you again!

-Claude Van Foxbat

Friday 5 August 2016

Friday Bread

Ralph Hotere - Hang In There Mate (2011)

In need of a pick me up today so here are some smooth as ever tunes for both of us. Starting with Nightmares On Wax once again, my favourite descriptor of this track will always be that it's like if trip hop was made in a more tropical location than Bristol. It rings true throughout too, it's got N.O.W's trademark positive vibe in there in spades, pretty much the antithesis of the gloomy side of trip hop.

Some old school Clark too, back when he was still billed as Chris Clark. Lord Of The Dance is a real standout there, in amongst the early markings of his later trademark distortion comes this little happy numbr. I'll forever love the sounds on offer here, it's a joy to listen to.

On that same note, my summer album of 2007 or so is back once again. Simian Mobile Disco's debut LP is short but very very sweet indeed, I Believe being one of many highlights, featuring Simon Lord from the original Simian lineup to boot. Part of me wishes they'd get him back as a guest and revisit the style, but at the same time it's a perfect time capsule of the sound that I'm happy with it as-is.

-Claude Van Foxbat

Tuesday 2 August 2016


Closing in on yet another birthday for me and the blog, so I'm in the process of trying to find some good tunes to maybe do an old fashioned birtday track dump. Until then though I have some smooth tunes lined up to ease you through the start of the week. Starting with more from Celadon City, he let slip on twitter that he's sat on a bunch of unreleased tunes (which would explain why they're so frequent), so long as theyre all of this quality and never fail to brighten up my day, I'll keep listening to 'em.

Speaking of good time vibes, here's a slice of scruff that goes well with a cuppa your favourite warm mug-based drink, the man himself even has a line of teabags if you're so inclined. It's relatively simple as far as Scruff tracks go, but man oh man is it ever sweet.

A key component of one of my favourite audio/visual combos of all time, I remember the lonely guitar instantly resonating with me as soon as it hit. It's a gorgeous motif that is evolved and replayed throughout he entire tunes runtime and it's nothing short of beautiful.