Monday 24 April 2017

Me, The Site And You.

Hello all. You know I don't often like to get real with you all but unfortunately now calls for some real talk. Those of you who've been with us for a while will notice that the site's been pretty much a skeleton crew of me, with Sulphites or occasionally Adam popping in. The long & short of it is that I'm starting to have trouble managing all the workings of running a music blog solo, and after a few calls for writers over the years have turned up empty I think it's time for a change in how we operate.

Chicote CFC - Polysemy (2017)

What I found out in the last post is that my old system of having the promos email forward to all the writers isn't ideal, I'd forgotten to clear it out in a few months so it plain stopped emailing us new stuff. So from no on if you're wanting to send something to me, you can do so via: My Twitter, my personal Gmail if you already have it (if not you can find it on the site, I try not to post it in case of spam crawlers).

I repeat, from this day forward the email will no longer be in use. see above for alternative modes of contact.

Right, now that unfortunate business is out of the way, let me get back to the tunes. Another lesson learned for me, I put off picking up the Old Future Fox Gang album when it was free, now it's disappeared off the face of the internet. Thankfully we have fan soundclouds to fill in the gap. I wasn't the hugest fan of the tunes that they had featured in Hotline Miami 2, but Don't Cry For Me really scratches my instrumental itch.

About a month ago the Ed Banger soundcloud started upping a bunch of older tunes for the upcoming 100 compilation. And among them was Sktesteak from Mr. Oizo's soundrack to his own film, I like to dig it out every once in a while because it never fails to transport me back to being a 16 year old Ed Banger fanboy. Other than than, it's Oizo doing what he does best circa 2007, which was a fantastic year for electro all 'round. That slowed down ending section is bloody fantastic every time.

-Claude Van Foxbat

Saturday 22 April 2017

Ceiling (And Tech) Demons

Some changes coming into effect today thanks to this post, but more on that later this week. Remember a year and a day ago when I posted Ceiling Demons?, I was thinking about them t'other day as I skipped back through some posts looking for soundcloud tunes that had been deleted, and was thinking how much into Even If back then. Mr. Foxbat was in tough times then and the audio positivity was much appreciated.

Fast forward to now, and quite a few things have changed. Ceiling Demons are back with some new tunes (and made me aware of some tech troubles in the process, again, more on that later this week) with March Forward (which you can download a 128 copy of here). The tempo's a lot slower for one and the sun kissed sample of Even If replaced with more acoustic elements. The intro alone has a military-esque sound to it as the title would imply, and immediately made me think of The Seatbelts' Waste Land. I touched on the positive vibes last time, and it's present again here which I appreciate a heck of a lot. After all Aesop Rock's One Of Four has seen me through some dark days and remind me I ain't alone on this road. It can be a difficult one to do sincerely due to the nature of he subject, but I think the heart shines through here.

And just because I thought I'd save you a couple of clicks, here' Even If once again. I'm still into it as much as I was a year ago, and that's without the bias of 'em being local lads too. March Forward is officially out on the 28th, with a new LP sometime later this year too. In the meantime, you can check out March Forward and other tunes on their soundcloud see below for more links to where you can find more from 'em.

You can find more Ceiling Demons on:

-Claude Van Foxbat

Monday 17 April 2017

Risen [SoundCloud Links Broken as of 2020]

Whoops, I got so wrapped up in bank holiday shenanigans that I almost forgot to write this post. So you're goingto be sort changed by one tune this time but in the process I managed to find some material for the next one. Anyway, back onto the tunes, it's been a while since I've seen or mentioned Celadon City; me and he go way back by now, always providing a nice port of call whenever I needed some more wholesome electronics. This here remix is no exception to that rule, and with some additional touches from Dom Kilsby it has has me wanting to return to Stardew Valley.

And finally another bit from Funkstörung, this was actually one of my first introductions to them beyond the remix of Björk's All Is Full Of Love,and I loved it. I was deep into the IDM hole at that point, and Funkstörung's much more sedate approach to the often frantic genre's elements was refreshing to say the least, and it had vocal accompaniment too which is a rarity too. It's not for everyone, guest vocalist Enik's delivery is unconventional to say the least, but I think the combination of the sometimes stilted verses and stumbling beats live up to the title, and make for a unique atmosphere.

-Claude Van Foxbat

Monday 10 April 2017

A Mixed Bag

Apologies in advance for the scattered selection of tracks, I went down the line doing some research on some rarer pieces in my collection, found some leads another miscellaneous good tunes on the way. Sarting with Mijk Van Dijk. I was just checking out his SC stuff on a whim, a lot of his stuff tends to be hit & miss with me, and to be honest this EP was mostly misses. But this is why we stick it out to the very end ladies and gents, because the last tune Power Slider hit my very small niche for songs that scratch my early 00's Wipeout itch (though as you may be able to make out from the cover, these tunes are actually from Ridge Racer V)

Now that that's out of the way, the rest of the tunes will be more of the downtempo variety. This one wasn't me searching out rarities, I like to check artists soundclouds and it just so happens that Funkstörung have two for some reason. On one of them is the promo copy of Disconnected, which as you may have already heard has little bits of interview spliced in. I kinda like it as an alternate version, reminds me of Miss Kittin's intermittent vocal musings on Radio Caroline Vol. 1, I appreciate they messed with the speed and whatnot to make it feel a bit more involved than just a simple cut 'n paste too. While it's pretty interesting, I'd still like a clean copy for daily listening, but even so, props to the Funkstörung lads for archiving it on the net.

And the Radio Caroline similarity what got me looking for this. Quite possibly the strongest contender in my library for hardest to google artist/track combination; Repeat with Studio 6.1.22, off the equally vague Easter EP. I normally try to avoid non-official soundcloud uploads for obvious reasons, but this one plain doesn't exist anywhere on any of Repeat's member's profiles (Plaid, Mark Broom & Dave Hill for the curious) so it'll do. The tune itself is gorgeous, it's nice to hear the full thing and not the 2 minute snippet on Radio Caroline (even if there isn't much more to the tune than what Kittin showed). Saying that I do kinda miss the spliced in samples from the compilation version, they added a little extra depth to the mix. Regardless it's a lovely little piece of instrumental down-tempo that may slightly stray into trip hop territory.

-Claude Van Foxbat

Monday 3 April 2017

Clash Me

Futura 2000 - Untitled (The Clash)
You'll never guess who has two thumbs and an unhealthy appreciation for a niche electronic sub-genre from the early 2000s. That's right, it's time for another semi-regular installment of Claude goes on about Electroclash. Naturally my first port of call to start the electroclash journey was International Deejay Gigolo, so I got stuck right in with some Fischerspooner. It's been a while since I brought em up, and even then last time I think it was Emerge which everyone knows about (but is still a class tune mind). Much like Miss Kittin's eventual debut with I Com, #1 sways between the dancefloor and more meditative offerings, and the slightly sexy Turn On is a standout.

I've been really diggin' the more punky side of Electroclash these days. Back when I was more about the smooth & sleazy tones of Felix Da Housecat and the like, I inevitably picked up some pieces here and there but it was never really my favourite. Enter Mount Sims, with the fittingly electroclashy titled UltraSex, a rather recent addition to my collection but has quickly become a mainstay. Much like on Felix's Kittenz & Thee Glitz, there's plenty of critique of media and 'Hollywood' (though not as pronounced as on Kittenz). Hollywood Bride doesn't waste time, there's not an intro so much as a short couple of seconds before the whole thing kicks in, Sims himself shows off his vocal prowess quite well here too, a rare non-monotone delivery style in the sea of electroclash (barring the slightly forced Kitsch/Bitch rhymes). Only real complaint is the chorus synth is a bit weak, but every other element is on point so it can slide.

And finally, more ADULT. Like with Mount Sims, I wasn't a huge fan back when I was mega into electroclash, but they've since grown to be one of my all time favourites. I'd by lying if I didn't say that Nicola Kuperus' breed of stoic delivery with just a hint of anxiety wasn't a big part of that. That's not to discount Adam Lee Miller's contributions mind (Hand To Phone has been a near constant in my playlists for more than a decade at this point), the production on Side-Swiped does a fantastic job of complimenting the vocals and creating the dark and slightly unnerving atmosphere, the way the synth effortlessly slides in after the title drop around 1:40 is just fantastic and makes everything feel like it's plunged into slow motion for a second or two.

-Claude Van Foxbat