XLR8R http://www.xlr8r.com Accelerating music & culture Thu, 29 Jan 2015 11:42:04 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0 DJ EZ, Goldie, Mumdance, and More Billed for Outlook Festival 2015 http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/dj-ez-goldie-mumdance-and-more-billed-for-outlook-festival-2015/ http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/dj-ez-goldie-mumdance-and-more-billed-for-outlook-festival-2015/#comments Thu, 29 Jan 2015 11:42:04 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85711 Croatian festival Outlook has announced the first wave of acts set to appear at this year's gathering in September. Dubstep figureheads Mala and Coki return as Digital Mystikz, alongside Mount Kimbie, UK producer Kevin Martin (a.k.a. The Bug), Mumdance, Exit label founder dBridge, longstanding UK garage DJ EZ, Om Unit, newly formed bass duo Sherwood & Pinch, and drum & bass veteran Goldie, among others.

Outlook—which identifies as "celebration of bass music and soundsystem culture"—takes place from September 2 through 6 at Fort Punta Christo in Pula, and additions to the line-up will be revealed in the forthcoming months. In the meantime, the current bill can be viewed here via the festival's website, and a promo video has also been posted below.

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Mano Le Tough, DJ Tennis, and Marcus Worgull Remix Vermont on Upcoming EP http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/mano-le-tough-dj-tennis-and-marcus-worgull-remix-vermont-on-upcoming-ep/ http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/mano-le-tough-dj-tennis-and-marcus-worgull-remix-vermont-on-upcoming-ep/#comments Wed, 28 Jan 2015 21:38:28 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85670 Having already spawned a remix EP overseen entirely by Prins Thomas, the Vermont pair's self-titled debut LP for Kompakt (a record which we deemed one of 2014's best) will again be the subject of a forthcoming collection of reworks. For The Other Versions EP, Mano Le Tough (pictured above) and DJ Tennis have been brought in to rework two separate album cuts, while Vermont member—alongside Danilo Plessow (a.k.a. Motor City Drum Ensemble)—Marcus Worgull has taken it upon himself to rework LP standout "Übersprung."

Set to arrive on February 16 via Kompakt in both vinyl and digital forms, the tracklist and artwork for the upcoming Other Versions remix collection have been included below.

1. Übersprung (Mano LeTough Mix)
2. Übersprung (Marcus Worgull Edit)
3. Majestät (DJ Tennis Edit)

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John Frusciante to Debut New Project on Acid Test; Hear a Track Now http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/john-frusciante-to-debut-new-project-on-acid-test-hear-a-track-now/ http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/john-frusciante-to-debut-new-project-on-acid-test-hear-a-track-now/#comments Wed, 28 Jan 2015 19:36:06 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85646 After a long run of solo guitar records, John Frusciante (a former member of the Red Hot Chili Peppers) has made the surprising announcement that he will launch a new acid project called Trickfinger, which will release a full-length record via the Absurd label's Acid Test imprint this spring. About five years ago, Frusciante is said to have begun experimenting with electronic hardware, "immersing himself in the unique musical language of Roland's classic techno machines." According to the celebrated rock musician, "I found that the languages machines forced programmers to think in had caused them to discover a new musical vocabulary," and so he spent a number of years attempting to learn that vocabulary, which he believes has "introduced many new principles of rhythm, melody, and harmony" to music.

Along with the announcement, Frusciante has shared the stripped-down opener from his upcoming LP, "After Below", which evokes vintage acid with a tweaked 303 standing at the forefront. The production can be streamed in full below before Trickfinger sees its release on April 6.

1. After Below
2. Before Above
3. Rainover
4. Sain
5. Exlam
6. 85h
7. 4:30
8. Phurip

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Floorplan, Ben UFO, Nina Kraviz, Clark, Marcel Dettmann, and More Billed for Movement 2015 http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/floorplan-ben-ufo-nina-kraviz-clark-marcel-dettmann-and-more-billed-for-movement-2015/ http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/floorplan-ben-ufo-nina-kraviz-clark-marcel-dettmann-and-more-billed-for-movement-2015/#comments Wed, 28 Jan 2015 18:40:35 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85644 The initial line-up for the upcoming 2015 edition of Detroit's Movement Festival has been revealed. Among the artists listed are a clutch of internationally respected DJs including the likes of Ben UFO, Nina Kraviz (who turned in an excellent DJ-Kicks mix album this week and is pictured above) Floorplan (a.k.a. Robert Hood), Marcel Dettmann, Carl Craig, Maya Jane Coles, Ben Klock, Dixon, Richie Hawtin, Midland, Steffi, Matrixxman, and this week's XLR8R podcast contributor Anthony Parasole, among others. In addition, a number of live acts have also been billed for this year's festivities, with Clark, Shigeto, KiNK, Recondite, Osborne, and Kangding Ray all set to perform live during the course of the three-day event.

Taking place from May 23 - 25, the full list for Movement's first wave of artist announcements can be peeped on the flier below, while more information on the fesival can be found here.


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Guido Preps New EP for State of Joy http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/guido-preps-new-ep-for-state-of-joy/ http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/guido-preps-new-ep-for-state-of-joy/#comments Wed, 28 Jan 2015 18:05:59 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85628 After remaining largely silent following the release of his Moods of Future Joy LP via Tectonic in 2013, Bristol beatmaker Guido will return in February with a new effort for his own State of Joy imprint. Built around "Moment"—an "addictive, up-beat" track which features the vocals of Emma-Lou—the upcoming EP will offer an original version and a "Joy Mix" of the track, with both productions coming accompanied by their respective instrumentals. Said to be a hook-laden affair, the original version of the track focuses on building patterns from horn and piano stabs, in addition to Emma-Lou's soulful vocal efforts, while the "Joy Mix" is said to come with "a unique dance-floor appeal...[featuring] low subs, and bubbly, cutting rhythms."

The Moment/Joy Mix EP is set to arrive on February 23; in the meantime, the artwork and complete tracklist for Guido's upcoming record have been included below.

1. Moment (feat. Emma-Lou)
2. Moment (Instrumental)
3. Moment (Joy Mix)
4. Moment (Joy Mix Instrumental)

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Torvvo "Light Traveling Beneath Me (Reduced Mix)" http://www.xlr8r.com/mp3/2015/01/torvvo-light-traveling-beneath-me-reduced-mix/ http://www.xlr8r.com/mp3/2015/01/torvvo-light-traveling-beneath-me-reduced-mix/#comments Wed, 28 Jan 2015 18:00:25 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85568 The latest effort to land on Seattle's fast-growing Hush Hush label is the Light Traveling Beneath Me EP, a new outing from 22-year-old, Pittsburgh-based artist Tom Holroyd (a.k.a. Torvvo). The focus of the record (which dropped earlier this week) is Torvvo's "Light Traveling Beneath Me" production, which appears in its original form and gets the remix treatment from the likes of Hanssen, Secret School, Faades, USF, and others in the course of the EP. Here, we have Holroyd's own "Reduced Mix" version of the track, which strips the tune down to more efficient form, while putting an extra focus on the track's overlapping patterns of bouncing chords and cascading melodic layers. Torvvo's "Reduced Mix" can be downloaded below, where the producer's original version of "Light Traveling Beneath Me" is also available to stream in full.

Light Traveling Beneath Me (Torvvo Reduced Mix)

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Lotic Announces Debut EP for Tri Angle http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/lotic-announces-debut-ep-for-tri-angle/ http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/lotic-announces-debut-ep-for-tri-angle/#comments Wed, 28 Jan 2015 17:57:13 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85632 Originally from Texas, J'Kerian Morgan (a.k.a. Lotic) cut his teeth as a member of Berlin's Janus collective, which also features experimental musicians M.E.S.H. (a recent XLR8R podcast contributor) and KaBlam. Following last year's Damsel in Distress mixtape, the rising producer has now announced plans to drop the five-song Heterocetera EP, which will serve as his debut release on New York's Tri Angle label. To celebrate the announcement, Morgan has shared a stream the EP's anxious title track, which pairs harsh textural loops with hip-hop and grime-indebted rhythms. Until Heterocetera drops on March 3, the record's title cut can be heard below, where the upcoming EP's complete tracklist can also be found.

1. Suspension
2. Heterocetera
3. Slay
4. Phlegm
5. Underneath

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Sónar Expands 2015 Festival Line-Up http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/sonar-expands-2015-festival-lineup/ http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/sonar-expands-2015-festival-lineup/#comments Wed, 28 Jan 2015 16:53:05 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85600 Spain's preeminent music festival, Sónar, has announced a second round of artists for its upcoming 22nd edition. 38 new names have been released, including beloved LA beatmaker Flying Lotus, recent Björk collaborator Arca, UK producer Jamie xx, FKA twigs, Siriusmodeselektor (a.k.a. Siriusmo and Modeselektor), and German icon Roman Flügel. Finally, '80s pop legends Duran Duran will headline the summer festival, held at the Fira Montjuic (Sónar By Day) and Fira Gran Via (Sónar By Night) venues.

Passes are still available for the three-day event, which takes place from June 18 to 20 and will feature more than 130 performances. Previously announced acts include Autechre, Sophie, Vessel, Lee Gamble, Holly Herndon, Dorian Concept, Randomer, and the Chemical Brothers. The full Sónar lineup can be found here.

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Flako Details Upcoming Debut LP http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/flako-details-upcoming-debut-lp/ http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/flako-details-upcoming-debut-lp/#comments Wed, 28 Jan 2015 16:49:27 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85609 Over the past five years, London-based musician Dario Rojo Guerra (a.k.a. Flako) has had an impressive run of releases for labels like Project: Mooncircle, R&S's Apollo imprint, and East London's Five Easy Pieces, who will do the honor of releasing Flako's long-gestating debut LP this spring. Inspired by classic jazz, formative South American styles, and synth work from the likes of Greek composer Vangelis, Natureboy pulls from global influences that showcase the natural world. Featuring Guerra's voice throughout, it marks a break from his past hip-hop-focused output, with string contributions from composer Miguel Atwood-Ferguson and a guest vocal from London artist Dirg Gerner included in the course of the record.

Until Natureboy drops on March 23, a new video fro the record's lead single, "Kuku" (a stream of which first appeared earlier this month), can be watched below, where the forthcoming record's artwork and tracklist can also be found below.

1. The Opening / Purple Trees
2. Shipibo Icaro
3. Gelis
4. Spice Melange
5. Kuku
6. Solo for Chloë
7. Shape of Things to Come
8. Som Da Aura
9. Twelve O'Clock Shadow (feat. Miguel Atwood-Ferguson)
10. Lyrebird
11. Golden High
12. Payaso
13. Who Do You Think You Are
14. For You (Reprise)
15. With Me Now (feat. Dirg Gerner)
16. The Odd & Beautiful

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Virginia My Fantasy http://www.xlr8r.com/reviews/2015/01/virginia-my-fantasy/ http://www.xlr8r.com/reviews/2015/01/virginia-my-fantasy/#comments Wed, 28 Jan 2015 16:00:03 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85171 For many of us, Virginia first emerged in the last couple of years as a vocalist, contributing impassioned verses to some of Ostgut Ton labelmate Steffi’s most standout hits. Her turns on "Reasons," "Yours," and, more recently, "Treasure Seeking," all proved that house music can, in the right hands, offer us more emotional sustenance than the usual cursory cries of "ooh baby" or "Detroit." Despite that, though, and ahead of an album pencilled in for later this year, Virginia’s first proper solo EP (after 2013’s Loch & Hill, which featured additional production from Steffi) finds her pretty much abandoning vocals all together.

"There wasn’t any intention behind the use of very few voices on this 12"," says the German producer, who far from being the relative newbie she might seem, has actually been DJing since the '90s and even held a residency at Sven Vath’s Frankfurt club Cocoon, amongst other locales. However, rather in defiance of her deep-rooted techno influences, Virginia’s sound is, in no uncertain terms, resolutely indebted to Chicago house, particularly the dreamy, misty-eyed stuff of the late '80s and early '90s, and producers like Dream 2 Science.

As such, it's not entirely surprising that the My Fantasy EP is a slavishly crafted, neo-classical ode that perhaps remains a bit too studious for its own good. Sure, Virginia hasn't just hit go on a load of sample pack loops; this is no plastic pastiche, and there is real definition and character in the sounds, but that alone only goes so far. First cut "Fictional" features a globular bassline, swirling, far-sighted pads, and prickly hi-hats that sound just like a lost cut from Steffi's 2011 debut album, but over the course of seven minutes they do little more than politely undulate. As a result, it feels like something is missing—a vocal perhaps, or a breakdown, or some sort of defining feature that would make it stand out from the crowd.

"My Fantasy" is similar in that it lands just about fully formed and rolls on from there, with little in the way of twists or turns. On a late-night, tripped-out, and half-tired dancefloor this may well work fine, but it likely won't be the tune that clubbers remember most the next morning, despite the heavily effected vocal coos that shimmer deep down below. Lastly, "Never Enough" toys with a more kinetic electro bassline and some carefully smeared and perfectly doleful chords. It's the most engaging cut of the lot; however, like everything here, it has all the ingredients of a great track, but somehow leaves you wanting more. It seems, then, like Virginia is still working to develop a production voice that's as compelling as her singing voice. Based upon this EP, she's not far off, and there is enough here to suggest that when she really finds herself, the results will be well worth hearing.

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Lapalux Announces New LP for Brainfeeder http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/lapalux-announces-new-lp-for-brainfeeder/ http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/lapalux-announces-new-lp-for-brainfeeder/#comments Wed, 28 Jan 2015 15:57:55 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85598 After garnering the attention of Flying Lotus in 2010, Stuart Howard (a.k.a. Lapalux) signed with the LA icon's Brainfeeder label and released a series of sensual, mildly experimental hip-hop EPs. His dreamlike and collage-heavy style quickly found a wider audience, culminating with the well-received debut album, Nostalchic, in 2013. Now, Lapalux has revealed plans to return with his second full-length record, Lustmore, an effort "loosely based on the idea of hypnagogia, a kind of limbo consciousness between being awake and asleep." Furthermore, the record is said to have been inspired by film soundtracks in the vein of Blade Runner and 2001: A Space Odyssey. "I really focused on making this album an imaginary visual experience," Howard explains in a press release. "You can almost see these imaginary movies play in your head when you listen."

Alongside the announcement, Howard has shared the melancholic lead single "Closure," a slow-burning, R&B-streaked showcase of his production talent and London artist Szjerdene's arresting, sultry vocals. Lustmore arrives on April 7; in the meantime a full stream of "Closure" can be found below, along with the upcoming LP's complete tracklist.

1. U Never Know (feat. Andreya Triana)
2. Sum Body
3. Closure (feat. Szjerdene)
4. Midnight Peelers
5. Push N' Spun
6. We Lost
7. Autumn (Tape Interlude)
8. Puzzle (feat. Andreya Triana)
9. Bud
10. Don't Mean A Thing
11. 1004
12. Make Money
13. Funny Games

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Sequencers, Synths, and Terrible Tattoos: 16 Things That Caught Our Eye at NAMM 2015 http://www.xlr8r.com/features/2015/01/sequencers-synths-terrible-tattoos-16-things-that-caught-our-eye-at-namm-2015/ http://www.xlr8r.com/features/2015/01/sequencers-synths-terrible-tattoos-16-things-that-caught-our-eye-at-namm-2015/#comments Wed, 28 Jan 2015 15:00:45 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85570 If someone were to simply read the list of big hitters on display at this year's NAMM show without any additional context, they might be left wondering exactly what year we were living in. After all, the 2015 edition of the massive conference and exhibition—which sets up shop in Orange County every January and provides a platform for music-related gear and software companies to show off their new products—was essentially dominated by nostalgia-inducing throwbacks. Korg's Arp Odyssey and Moog's full-size System 55 were just a couple of the retro pieces making waves, but thankfully, there was plenty more on offer for DJs and electronic music producers to get excited about. Describing everything we saw while wandering the halls of the Anaheim Convention Center would be impossible, but we have compiled a list of things—good, bad, and outright weird—that caught our eye.


Arturia BeatStep Pro
Released last year, Arturia's $99 BeatStep USB MIDI controller serves as a simple, handy-as-heck hardware step sequencer, particularly with its CV and MIDI outputs. BeatStep Pro ups the game significantly by combining two melodic sequencers with one drum sequencer and allowing the user run them independently. Changes to the sequences can be linked, or independent of one another, and displays help with navigation and precision. There are now touch-sensitive knobs, plus a Randomizer to mix up patterns, and a real-time looper/roller touch strip. Priced at $299, the BeatStep Pro is slated to arrive in April.


Moog Modular Synths
This news has already been all over the web, but Moog was showing the limited-edition remakes of its 1970s modular beasts: the System 35, System 55, and Model 15. Only 55 units of the System 55 will be offered, and each one will cost $35,000; Moog will also make 35 copies of the System 35, for $22,000 a pop, and 150 of the Model 15, each one priced at $10,000. Some optional extras are also being built to go along with these modular classics: a five-octave duophonic keyboard, a sequencer extension cabinet, and a dual 960 Sequential Controller for the System 35 and System 55.


Korg SQ-1
The SQ-1, Korg's new, super-compact step sequencer, is a spiritual successor to the SQ-10 that's roughly the size of a Korg Volca. It'll keep synths and drum machines in sync by sending clock, and also allows users to make various rhythmic or melodic patterns to send to them. Even better, it should connect to almost anything: with dual CV trigger and gate, analog 1/8" sync, a specific connection for Korg's own littleBits, a three-pin MIDI connection, and a USB port for MIDI connection to a computer, the proof is in the portage. The SQ-1 will be priced at $99 when it ships in the coming months.


Teenage Engineering Pocket Operators
Some of the biggest news out of this year's NAMM came in its smallest packages: Teenage Engineering's trio of Pocket Operators, which include the Factory melodic synth, Sub bass synth, and Rhythm drum machine. Each one uses a 16-step grid of 16 sounds (with layers of parameters for each), and the synthesized output sounds outrageously good. There's a second minijack that allows users to chain and synchronize tempo between units, as well as some other machines. All three models have various effects and tweakable parameters. Plus, they look great, whether they're in the nude or placed inside the optional rubberized case. The Pocket Operators are all available now for $59 a piece.


Quicco Sound Mi.1
Merging analog hardware with digital software can be difficult, but the Quicco Sound Mi.1 (which was funded via Indiegogo) does it—effortlessly and wirelessly. The tiny device can simply be plugged into the MIDI in and out ports of a synth (or any other MIDI instrument), and it will make said device wireless over Bluetooth LE. Once an iOS device or Mac is fired up with an app that can make the other end of the Bluetooth connection, the user is good to go. There are dozens of great iPad sequencers and arpeggiators out there, meaning that the Mi.1 provides loads of cool new ways to control hardware, wirelessly. It's shipping now for $45.


Korg Arp Odyssey
Another remake from Japanese legend Korg, the Arp Odyssey is being designed with authentic Arp circuitry. The original Arp shipped with different filters at different times, but Korg is now allowing customers to choose, as circuits from each generation are being included. The case has been trimmed down, as the new Odyssey is just 86% of the size of the original, and it's being sold in three different colorways. There's even a Drive switch for analog overdrive distortion. Availability is TBA, but an MSRP of $1400 has been announced.


Dave Smith Sequential Circuits Prophet-6
The Prophet-6 is Dave Smith's homage to the legendary polysynth that started it all, the Sequential Prophet-5. The Prophet-6 takes the best qualities of the original Prophet-5—true voltage-controlled oscillators, filters, and amplifiers—and adds enhancements, including high-quality effects, a polyphonic step sequencer, an arpeggiator, and much more. The Prophet-6 will be out in the second quarter of 2015 for $2799.


Logic Pro X 10.1
The latest wave of interest in electronic music has not escaped Apple's notice, and Logic Pro X 10.1 is the company's answer to the craze. The free update is aimed at the electronic music producer, with 10 new "beat programmers" added to its AI-driven Drummer feature. As with the acoustic players, users can direct the program to play different patterns based on the position of the XY slider, and further customize once they find something they're happy with. The new Drum Machine Designer makes it so each individual drum sound can be tweaked, as pitch, length, envelope, distortion, body, presence, pan, and volume can all be adjusted. Furthermore, Logic now offers new Note Repeat and Spot Erase features—and plenty more. The software's latest version is available now.


Roland Aira MX-1
Following the release of the AIRA TR-8 and SYSTEM-1, the MX-1 is Roland's attempt to rethink the mixer. It functions as an audio interface for a computer (up to 18 channels of audio come via USB), and users can plug in Roland AIRA devices via USB as well, over the same USB cable. There are traditional analog inputs for other hardware, and a single coax digital jack that's either an input or output. The mixer is designed for live use: scenes can be set up, and there are loads of tempo-synced step-sequencer effects, along with a cue feature for previewing a track before taking it to the masses. Pricing and availability on this one are TBA.


Elektron Overbridge
Elektron's Overbridge was announced last year, and was finally up and running at this year's NAMM. It's a technology that allows newer Elektron instruments—Analog Four, Analog Rytm, and Analog Keys—to transmit their audio and MIDI over USB, into a host plug-in that will run inside a host DAW (Ableton Live and Logic, for now). Users can route discrete inputs and outputs, as well as MIDI, and the ability to automate the machines' parameters inside a sequencer is a godsend in terms of usability. It'll be free to all users when it's released in the first quarter of 2015.


Novation Launchpad Pro
Designed for live performance, Novation's Launchpad Pro is the most desirable model to date of the ubiquitous grid controller. New RGB pads light up to match the color of the user's clips in Ableton Live, and its Push-like Note Mode automatically switches the layout for drum or instrument devices (for drums, all sounds are available, and with instruments, the grid illuminates as a chromatic keyboard). Unlike Push, the Launchpad Pro can also be used with any of the user's music software and external hardware in Standalone Mode. It will be available in Spring 2015 for $299.


Rane MP2015
Rane is describing its new MP2015 rotary mixer as a "no-compromise music-mixing performance instrument," and at a price of $3,500, that only seems fair. It features gorgeous design, including laser-etched wood side panels, classic spun-aluminum knob caps, 16-segment level peak-hold meters, and backlit push switches. The internals are similarly lust-worthy, with Audio 4 Pro delta-sigma modulator converters by AKM.


Downstairs Modular
NAMM's basement was once again populated by various small stringed instruments, obscure Chinese gear manufacturers, and a turnt-as-hell modular synthesizer community. Highlights included booths by big hitters like Make Noise and Muff Wiggler, as well as newcomers like Lysandre Follet (a.k.a. Minigorille) whose CV Graphic Module and GeometrySynth (pictured here) continue to push the boundaries of what modern-day modular synthesizers are capable of.


Pioneer vs. Ghostbusters
Pioneer never fails to impress with its flights of turntable fancy. This (working) Ghostbusters CDJ was designed by artist Jesse Graves.


God Hates Gear Nerds


Hollywood Gordon
Because NAMM.

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Humans "Follow (Phil Moffa Remix) http://www.xlr8r.com/mp3/2015/01/humans-follow-phil-moffa-remix/ http://www.xlr8r.com/mp3/2015/01/humans-follow-phil-moffa-remix/#comments Wed, 28 Jan 2015 14:00:38 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85560 An artist who has highlighted during the course of our recent Bubblin' Up Week of content (and a frequent collaborator of XLR8R's most recent podcast contributor, Anthony Parasole), NYC producer/engineer Phil Moffa has turned in a new remix for free download. Here, Moffa has taken on "Follow," a cut from Vancouver duo Humans' upcoming NOONTIDE LP, turning the active production into a much more subdued piece of techno. Dark and dense, Moffa's rework stretches ambient textures and a bouncing delay sequence across a chugging six minutes, which methodically build steam as additional cymbals and chopped snippets of the original track are added to the procession. Phil Moffa's remix of "Follow" can be downloaded below before Humans' NOONTIDE LP lands via the Hybridity label on February 24.

Follow (Phil Moffa Remix)

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Premiere: Stream Juan Atkins' Upcoming LP as Model 500 http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/premiere-stream-juan-atkins-upcoming-lp-as-model-500/ http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/premiere-stream-juan-atkins-upcoming-lp-as-model-500/#comments Wed, 28 Jan 2015 13:00:05 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85553 2015 marks the 35th year in the accomplished career of pioneering Detroit producer and DJ Juan Atkins. To mark this milestone, Atkins has returned to his own Metroplex label—a dance music institution whose own catalog reaches back three decades—to deliver a new full-length album as Model 500, one of his earliest solo aliases. Set to officially drop next week, Model 500's upcoming Digital Solutions LP can now be streamed in full exclusively on XLR8R.

Spanning nine tracks, Digital Solutions is made from much of the same DNA as Model 500's first productions, making use of both electro and more straight four-on-the-floor rhythms to propel Atkins' space-age synth sequences and fractured slices of Motor City soul. An adventurous effort with its fair share of left turns, the album may partially serve as a means to reflect on Atkins' accomplishments of the past 35 years, but the LP seems to signal that Atkins is also still an artist who is utterly fascinated with the sounds of the future.

Digital Solutions, Juan Atkins' first full-length effort as Model 500 in 16 years, can be streamed in its entirety below before the record lands on February 2 via Metroplex.

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Mark E to Release New 12" via ESP Institute; Preview It Now http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/mark-e-to-release-new-12-via-esp-institute-shares-preview/ http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/mark-e-to-release-new-12-via-esp-institute-shares-preview/#comments Tue, 27 Jan 2015 21:36:27 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85546 Following an LP and an EP in 2014 for Ghostly's Spectral Sound label, Birmingham DJ/producer (and former XLR8R podcast contributor) Mark E will next land on the ESP Institute outpost with the two-track Emergency 12". Set to arrive on February 16, the record will serve as Mark E's debut for the label, who were also responsible for one of 2014's most memorable releases, having issued Young Marco's elegant Biology LP in June of last year.

On Emergency's a-side cut, "Laurentian Abyss," Mark E is said to "trudge through an array of rhythmic pulses, percussion, and arpeggiation that resemble the inner workings of a grandfather clock, based on a disorienting 5/4 timing yet culminating in a singular stroke, " while the flipside offering "begins with the formula for which we know Mark E best, the ultimate tease winding us up for the big payoff." Ahead of the record's release next month, we have been treated to a preview of Mark E's new pair of productions, with clips of both "Laurentian Abyss" and "Emergency" currently available to stream below.

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LuckyMe Drops New EP from DJ Paypal http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/luckyme-drops-new-ep-from-dj-paypal/ http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/luckyme-drops-new-ep-from-dj-paypal/#comments Tue, 27 Jan 2015 20:38:22 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85538 A somewhat enigmatic producer whose discography includes a 30-track package of Drake edits, DJ Paypal has today dropped his vinyl debut via the LuckyMe label. Entitled Buy Now, the six-track affair is said to find the producer "flipping obscure disco tracks into pummeling footwork tracks," a feat that can be heard in action via the record's preview stream included below.

DJ Paypal's cleverly titled, vinyl-only Buy Now EP starting today via LuckyMe (and the artist's own website). Along with the aforementioned EP preview stream, Buy Now's full tracklist has also been included below.

1. I'm Ready
2. You Got Me
3. Sonnade
4. Don't Stop
5. bEbay
6. Fire

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Dan Lissvik Signs to Smalltown Supersound, Announces Upcoming 12" http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/dan-lissvik-signs-to-smalltown-supersound-announces-upcoming-12/ http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/dan-lissvik-signs-to-smalltown-supersound-announces-upcoming-12/#comments Tue, 27 Jan 2015 19:37:02 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85532 A former member of the Studio production outfit, Dan Lissvik has signed to Norwegian label Smalltown Supersound for a string of releases which will begin next month with the Shuvit! 12".

Said to be the first of an ongoing 12" series which will culminate with the release of a solo LP from Lissvik in late 2015, the three-track Shuvit! effort appears to find the Swedish producer crafting somewhat oddball disco hybrids where the line between programmed audio and live instrumentation is pleasantly blurred. "Airwalk" serves as our first example of such, a seven-plus-minute voyage into spacey, understated funk which presents an array of bright and airy melodies across its elongated run. The track can be streamed in full below before Lissvik's Shuvit! 12" officially lands on February 10.

1. Intro
2. Airwalk
3. Shuvit!

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Hercules & Love Affair's Andy Butler Readies Debut Solo EP; Listen to a Track Now http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/hercules-listen-to-a-track-now/ http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/hercules-listen-to-a-track-now/#comments Tue, 27 Jan 2015 19:11:51 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85494 Andy Butler, the creator and musical driving force behind Hercules & Love Affair, has announced that he will release his debut solo EP via his own mr.intl label next month. Ahead of the two-tracker's full release, Butler has shared the record's a-side cut, "You Can Shine", which features a soulful vocal from New York singer Richard Kennedy (that will sound stylistically familiar to HALA fans) paired with a croaky, pounding techno backing. On the b-side will be "Personality Track," a production which is billed as "a whiplashing techy instrumental pounder."

Butler's "You Can Shine" can be heard in full on via player below before the artist's first solo EP sees a vinyl release on February 23, with a digital release to follow in March.

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Benoît Pioulard Preps New LP for Kranky http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/benoit-pioulard-preps-new-lp-for-kranky/ http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/benoit-pioulard-preps-new-lp-for-kranky/#comments Tue, 27 Jan 2015 18:57:04 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85480 US singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Thomas Meluch (a.k.a. Benoît Pioulard) has announced his latest in a long line of albums for Chicago's Kranky imprint. Meluch explains that the basis for his upcoming fifth long-player, Sonnet, is "a series of field recordings of tones and unintentional harmonies that I made in the summer and fall of 2013—whistling industrial air conditioners, bird songs, locust drones, washing machines—that I mimicked or interpreted on the guitar, making loops that developed into fuller compositions." In addition, the album originally had a fairly heavy vocal element that Meluch eventually stripped away, leaving behind a spare, pastoral atmosphere in which only what he felt was "absolutely essential" was kept.

A teaser video for Sonnet has been included below, where a stream of LP cut "So Etched in Memory" and the album's full tracklist can also be found ahead of the record's official release on March 30.

1. With No Advantage
2. The Gilded Fear That Guides the Flow
3. Of Everything That Rhymes
4. Is in Its Clearest Form
5. An Image Apart from Ourselves
6. Whose Palms Create
7. As Would a Weaver
8. A Shade of Celadon
9. So Etched in Memory
10. Upon the Break Arch
11. That Wounded Weathered
12. Shut-ins on Sunday See
13. The Very Edge of Its Flame
14. And Relent

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Shlohmo Announces Upcoming LP for True Panther/Wedidit; Hear the Lead Single Now http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/shlohmo-announces-upcoming-lp-for-true-pantherwedidit-hear-the-lead-single-now/ http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/shlohmo-announces-upcoming-lp-for-true-pantherwedidit-hear-the-lead-single-now/#comments Tue, 27 Jan 2015 18:07:07 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85458 After first announcing his new partnership with NYC label True Panther with the release of last year's "Emerge from Smoke" single, Los Angeles beatmaker Henry Laufer (a.k.a. Shlohmo) has announced the details of his forthcoming second full-length record, Dark Red, which will drop via the imprint in April. A co-release with Laufer's own Wedidit collective/label, the 11-track record is said to find Shlohmo continuing to craft gloomy, textured productions with shades of "'90s IDM, R&B, cassette-tape Jungle, and, in an unexpected turn, sludge metal."

"It sounds like if Electric Wizard tried to make an R&B record," Laufer himself explains in a press release, "or Boards of Canada meets Burzum by the River Styx." Laufer goes on to further explain that he began recording the record after returning to Los Angeles and setting up a small studio in his apartment which was mostly stocked with an arsenal of '80s-era gear originally owned by his father. Furthermore, Laufer was in a particular mental state during the recording of the album, saying, "I had just lost some people close to me and was dealing with another loved one's health issues. I was all over the place mentally, and I think it reflects in this record whether I like it or not." In the press release, the SoCal artist goes to explain that his one aim going into the record was to make it "loud... and not just loud but really really fucking loud. I wanted the sound of the thing to be devastating and violent."

Helping us make sense of that description is "Buried," the record's lead single which sees wobbly melodies, scattered drums, and distorted, hand-played basslines rise from a bed of electronic noise. The seven-minute production can be streamed in full below, where the complete tracklist for Shlohmo's Dark Red LP (out on April 7) has also been included; the man's updated list of upcoming live tour dates can also be found below.

1. Ten Days of Falling
2. Meet Ur Maker
3. Buried
4. Emerge From Smoke
5. Slow Descent
6. Apathy
7. Relentless
8. Ditch
9. Remains
10. Fading
11. Beams


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Download a Free EP from Clark http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/download-a-free-ep-from-clark/ http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/download-a-free-ep-from-clark/#comments Tue, 27 Jan 2015 17:09:02 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85508 Following a resoundingly successful 2014, which saw Clark return to the Warp label with an excellent self-titled LP (a record that landed in our Top Releases of 2014 list), the seasoned UK producer has started off the new year with the release of a free EP, Winter Boots (Part 1).

Spanning three tracks, Winter Boots (Part 1) finds Clark sprinkling familiar accapellas over a trio of his trademark dense, melodically complex productions. The full EP can be streamed below and downloaded for free here. Furthermore, our recent In the Studio feature with the accomplished UK sound sculptor can be read here.

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Èbony "Sunshine" http://www.xlr8r.com/mp3/2015/01/ebony-sunshine/ http://www.xlr8r.com/mp3/2015/01/ebony-sunshine/#comments Tue, 27 Jan 2015 17:00:35 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85454 Èbony is the guise of Toronto-based producers Sylvermayne and Jordan Gardner, who together have built a catalog of tracks for just over a year now. Described by the pair itself as landing between "the futurist perspective of Detroit techno and the soulful melodies of Yoruba house," Èbony's sound seeks to balance dancefloor appeal with a rewarding listening experience, as can be heard in "Sunshine," the pair's latest track offered here. Anchored by the bounce of stuttered kicks, the production gradually builds layers of gloomy atmosphere that encircle the tune's intricate percussion patterns and recurring swells of melodic synth sequences, ultimately rendering "Sunshine" a somewhat deceiving title for this quality outing from the budding Canadian pair.


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Locked Groove and Mind Against Team Up on New EP; Preview It Now http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/locked-groove-and-mind-against-team-up-on-new-ep-preview-it-now/ http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/locked-groove-and-mind-against-team-up-on-new-ep-preview-it-now/#comments Tue, 27 Jan 2015 16:35:56 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85474 Scuba's Hotflush label has today announced that it will release Elysium/Pulsar, the first collaborative effort between Belgian label mainstay Locked Groove and ascendant Italian pair Mind Against (who up to now have released exclusively through the Life & Death imprint). The forthcoming two-track release looks to be a skillful melding of Locked Groove's floor dynamics and Mind Against's soaring atmospheres, with its lead track appearing to have sufficiently impressed Tale of Us enough for the outfit to feature "Elysium" prominently in its debut BBC Radio 1 Essential Mix over the weekend.

The first collaboration from former XLR8R podcast contributor Locked Groove and the Mind Against duo, Elysium/Pulsar, is set to land via Hotflush on February 9; both tracks can currently be previewed using the player below.

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Preview Hodge's Forthcoming Double 12" for Hemlock http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/preview-hodges-forthcoming-double-12-for-hemlock/ http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2015/01/preview-hodges-forthcoming-double-12-for-hemlock/#comments Tue, 27 Jan 2015 16:14:43 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85487 Having previously appeared on Tempa, Punch Drunk, Livity Sound and several other like-minded, bass-focused labels (in fact, he's released no less than nine EPs and singles over the past two years), Bristol producer Hodge's first outing of 2015 will see him lend his considerable talents to a four-track double 12" for Untold's Hemlock imprint. Containing "four heavyweight tracks"—one of which, "Recall," made an appearance in fellow Bristol artist Kowton's recent XLR8R podcast—Hodge's HEK025 EP will see its official release on February 23, serving as his debut for Untold's label. Before then, preview clips of all four EP cuts can be heard using the player below.

A. Blood Moon
B. I Don't Recognise You Lately
C. Recall
D. Tail of the Snake

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Vril Portal http://www.xlr8r.com/reviews/2015/01/vril-portal/ http://www.xlr8r.com/reviews/2015/01/vril-portal/#comments Tue, 27 Jan 2015 16:00:02 +0000 http://www.xlr8r.com/?p=85156 It's appealing to think of Vril's second album, Portal, as a doorway into a set of discrete rooms. The titles of these tracks—"Portal 1," "Portal 2," "Portal 3," and so on—invite the listener to consider the album in this way. This is probably Vril's intention; by presenting this record—to paraphrase the press release—as a series of moments recalled from another dimension (hence the name of the LP), Vril neatly sidesteps the labor of having to make an "album." Portal, which is arriving via the Delsin label, would rather present itself as a mosaic of moods, a collection of pieces in various shapes and colors that occupy the same surface area, placed beside each other at awkward angles.

When inspecting this mosaic more closely, its superficial flaws are a little more off-putting than they should be. Portal is sequenced in a somewhat ungainly manner, and there are moments when it judders quite inelegantly. "Portal 1," with its simple, elongated fade into the proceedings, eases gently into its smoky melodies and pulley-driven chords; after a few minutes, it dissipates in another prolonged fade-out. In contrast, "Portal 2" is a sudden jolt into fourth gear—the transition would benefit from more finesse. Meanwhile, a burst of overdriven white noise introduces "Portal 3" which, fleeting though it is, just sounds a bit unpleasant. Though these issues are ultimately minor—these moments only take up a few seconds of a 47-minute-long record—it conveys a slight lack of care.

The same can't be said for the tracks themselves, which, once they get going, show a producer well versed in the finer details. Vril's EPs—especially the trio he released via Giegling—are full of pliable techno tracks with an aqueous quality about them. They're neither fragile nor unyielding. "Portal 5" offers a fine example of this fomula: there's something quite Fengler-esque about its bouncing chords (and there's a stab that specifically recalls a pastel-y take on the Berghain resident's monstrous "Friction"), but Vril places the claps and kicks in a much airier space. Only on "Portal 4" do these elements stick together and form something much denser. It's full of unruly belches and burps laid over tension-building two-note chords, looping more or less every eight bars; on paper, that sounds especially repetitive, but the detail in each loop is endlessly immersive.

On occasions where Vril lets these loops unfurl, the results are dazzling. "Portal 7" is a thrilling peak-time denouement with a billowing chord sequence and hi-hats that crash against the track's sides like ocean spray. As with most of these tracks, "Portal 7" pulses and thrums in all the right places. But, returning to Portal's apocryphal inspiration, the idea of the album was to present tracks from another world. Portal is a solid techno album, but its promise of the exotic and otherworldly doesn't quite reflect the reality. There's little here that one would call truly experimental ("Portal 8," a noise outro, is an afterthought in this respect), and the album's strongest moments err on territory Vril is already comfortable with. Portal is a decent record—and there's plenty here to enjoy—but the implied novelty of its title is something of a misnomer, because the LP is presenting a world we've already visited before.

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