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Review: John Barera & Will Martin Graceless

Label: Dolly

In a word, the debut long-player from Boston DJs/producers/roommates John Barera and Will Martin is solid. Over the course of the album's eight tracks, there is simply nothing to object to. Essentially a collection of hardware-formed, soul-sampling house productions, one might assume that the record's unblemished run is the result of Barera and Martin playing it safe, but that would be shortsighted. In truth, Graceless is effortlessly refreshing in its conceptual simplicity; these are tracks for tracks' sake, and ones that again prove that a good sample, smart drum programming, and genuine musicality can still make for potent (and pleasantly uncomplicated) dancefloor music. Read more » 

  • Filed under: review
  • 10/13/2014

Labels We Love: Clone

All week long, XLR8R is presenting its annual focus on Labels We Love. Click here to check out the rest of the series.

The story of Clone Records' early days is a familiar tale in electronic music. Label owner Serge, a DJ and occasional producer seldom referred to by his surname (Verschuur, for the record), started the label in 1993 because he could, and because it was easier for him to release records by himself than rely on others to do it. Clone's success is a well-trodden story of self-reliance and a DIY attitude to making things happen, and the name of the Rotterdam-based label is a tangential reference to this too, since many other labels in the US that Serge admired, especially in Chicago, were born not from grand ambition but through a pretty simple desire to get records out as quickly, and with as little fuss, as possible. Read more » 

Crème Organization and L.I.E.S. Team Up for Special ADE 12" featuring Legowelt, Ron Morelli, Willie Burns, and More

This week, like-minded leftfield house outposts Crème Organization and L.I.E.S. will be releasing a collaborative 12" (artwork above) to tie in with the labels' joint showcase on Thursday at the Amsterdam Dance Event. Read more » 

  • Filed under: news
  • 10/13/2014

Barnt Readies 12" for Hinge Finger

Celebrated Cologne producer Daniel Ansorge (a.k.a. Barnt) has been lined up for the latest release on Joy Orbison's and Will Bankhead's Hinge Finger label. Read more » 

  • Filed under: news
  • 10/13/2014

Dusky Announces New 12"; Stream the A-Side Now

Fast-rising London house duo Dusky (a.k.a. Nick Harriman and Alfie Granger-Howell) has announced a new 12", "YooHoo" b/w "Akebono" (artwork above). Read more » 

  • Filed under: news
  • 10/13/2014

Download: Premiesku "Despre Ei"

First Listen
Label: Apollonia

"Despre Ei" is the kind of track that is good at taking its time. Serving as the closing effort on Romanian trio Premiesku's More 4 EP, the seven-plus-minute production is anchored by a slippery bass pattern which hypnotically cycles through its one-bar loop as the rest of the track's rhythmic elements dig deeper and deeper. Over the course of the production, Premiesku methodically pieces together thick hats and sharp percussion, on top of which the trio places dubby chords, distant field recordings, detailed layers of electronic glitches, and even a few glimpses of what sounds like a large choir (bathed in reverb, of course). When it all comes together, it's hard not to get sucked down into the production's dense, chugging path. "Despre Ei" and the rest of Premiesku's three-track More 4 EP will see a full release later this month via the Apollonia label. 

Average: 8.5 (84 votes)

The Lowdown: This Week's XLR8R Top 10 with Flying Lotus, Roman Flügel, Om Unit, and More

Throughout the week, a whole lot of material gets posted here on XLR8R. And while we know—and love—that some hardcore readers will eagerly pour over every single news story, interview, podcast, video, and MP3 download that appears on the site, we also realize that for most people, it's impossible to see everything, which means that some quality XLR8R content is likely to get missed in the hustle and bustle of everyone's daily lives. In the interest of making it easier for everyone to catch up, every Friday we present The Lowdown, a weekly wrap-up of the top 10 tidbits from our site. Read more » 

  • Filed under: news
  • 10/10/2014

'Labels We Love' Is Coming Next Week; Vote Now and Tell Us What Labels You Love

While artists and music remain the primary focus here at XLR8R, we also know that labels continue to play a key role in the grand scheme of things. In truth, a case could be made that labels—and the curatorial function that they provide—are arguably more important than ever, especially when one considers that so many of the traditional music industry's gatekeeping and tastemaking institutions have crumbled over the past decade or so. Given that, we're always excited to shine an especially bright light on some of our favorite imprints each year via the annual Labels We Love series. The name is pretty self-explanatory, but be on the lookout for several in-depth label features, along with shorter pieces highlighting a number of noteworthy outposts. We've put a lot of time and effort into this year's Labels We Love, which will kick off on Monday, October 13, but we also know that the picture isn't quite complete, as we have yet to hear from XLR8R readers about their favorite imprints. Read more » 

  • Filed under: news
  • 10/10/2014

Jacques Greene Plots North American Live Tour

Former Montreal resident and now NYC-based producer Jacques Greene has revealed plans to take his live show across the US and Canada next month. Read more » 

  • Filed under: news
  • 10/10/2014

Download: Cakedog "They Was Sleepin"

An affiliate of Matthewdavid's Leaving label who can more often be found operating under the name Ahnnu, Leland Jackson this week returned to his Cakedog alias to issue his third footwork-indebted outing under the moniker, Menace in the Phantom. Said to have been "inspired by the Battle Groundz of Chicago" and dedicated to the late footwork pioneer DJ Rashad, Jackson's new 14-track outing melds the breakneck pace and sharp sample chops of footwork with his own slant on off-kliter beat production. Pulled from Menace in the Phantom, "They Was Sleepin" serves as one example of Cakedog's hybrid approach as it spends its initial push placing sliding chords and—what sounds like—Nicki Minaj vocal samples atop familiar footwork rhythms, before transitioning to more pastiched territory in the song's final minute, where looser samples and a flush of new percussion hits are introduced. Jackson's latest outing as Cakedog is out now in cassette and digital form via Leaving/Stones Throw.  

Average: 8.3 (46 votes)

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