A weekly roundup of releases on Bandcamp and Soundcloud selected and delivered by Aidan. Mostly house/techno/ambient/drone.
List season 2016
From a musical perspective, one of the worst things to happen this year was the winding up of Juno Plus. It really was wonderful. Considered writing on electronic music that covered a similar remit to Bandcloud, it featured extensive pieces and a huge amount of wit, and it's dearly missed by many of us. One of my favourite aspects of its coverage was the series of lists at the end of each year, featuring musings by guests and tongue-in-cheek lists from its contributors. In its absence, and with the blessing of erstwhile editor Tony Poland, I contacted some writers, artists, label heads and so forth and asked for their thoughts at the end of 2016.
The overall mood was dour, with many lists themed around, but there's a fitting irreverence and a genuine love of music throughout. Some provided lists, some blurbs. Some shared older music they spent time with this year. Some gave links, some didn't, so there may some googling in your future.
Click images for more on each contributor, to whom I offer my unending thanks.
Aurora Mitchell (Juno Plus, The Wire, Dazed) 5 food posts from Ben UFO which made me feel way too hungry
bee, a (Juno Plus) Ten things about 2016 that give me some semblance of hope going forward in these scary-as-hell times
Top 3 tracks that fall apart in the best way possible
1) Luis - Talk Me Down
2) Bruce - I’m Alright Mate
3) Kornél Kovács - Pop
Top 3 tracks I heard this year featuring ambient loon noises
1) Run Tings & Liftin' Spirits - Invincible
2) Fantastic Man - Acid Martin
3) Voices From The Lake - In Giova Alternative Mix
Top 3 tracks that my Mom was really feeling during a 6 hour drive together & her corresponding commentary:
1) Willow - Untitled B1 (“What’s that sound? like this already”)
2) HNNY - Hotline Riddim (Jacques Renault Edit) (“It’s amazing what people can do with drums”)
3) D.R.A.M - Cute (*starts singing the chorus in falsetto during the last verse*)
The kindest thing 2016 offered us
1) Rihanna ft. Drake - Work
Dean Driscoll's Best of 2014 list
In the past couple of years I've allowed myself to let go of the need to keep up with absolutely all new music, and clung to the notion the music I love will find me eventually somehow. 2014 has been a particularly good vintage for me this year, so here's five records released within those 12 months that I finally got around to and subsequently rinsed in 2016.
1. Hands - The Soul Is Quick (Ecstatic)
Axel Willner applied the production techniques he uses as The Field on Kompakt for this dark drone/ambient record on Ecstatic. Both quietly beautiful and unsettling at the same time.
2. Fantastic Man - Rhythm Algorithm (Superconscious Records)
This record and Fantastic Man's skills in general are probably not much of a secret, but I still feel that this record should have been absolutely unavoidable since it came out. 'Trance Sexual' in particular is an incredible piece of work, and underlines FM's Tin Man-rivalling ability to wring wondrously inventive and ambitious music out of traditional acid production techniques.
3. HTRK - Psychic 9-5 Club (Ghostly International)
A Spotify Discover Weekly find that I became pretty obsessed with over the course of the year. The delicate, plaintive vocals applied to the skeletal, bass-heavy backing are a haunting combination that got under my skin and have pretty much remained there permanently.
4. Febueder - Lilac Lane (Melodic)
I know very little about this UK band, and as this was their last release, there's not a lot more to find out at the moment beyond the fact that they were still just teenagers when they made it. There are so many musical touchstones you could point to as references to their sound, but it's so individual that it would do them a disservice to do so. Better you seek this and the preceding Soap Carv EP and find out for yourself.
5. You'll Never Get To Heaven - Adorn (Divorce)
One for fans of Beach House - YNGTH also occupy that same sort of 'lo fi indie with an electronic music aesthetic' style that BH worked to best effect on Bloom. Just really lovely music — both this and their self-titled debut are well worth checking.
Ian Maleney (Juno Plus, Fallow Media) 'Mirror: ’68-’86, or “The Seventies Were A State of Mind”'
1. Steely Dan - 'Gaucho'
2. The Eagles - 'I Can’t Tell You Why'
3. Joni Mitchell - 'The Hissing Of Summer Lawns'
4. Fleetwood Mac - 'Sara'
5. Scritti Politti - 'Skank Blog Bologna'
6. Glen Campbell - 'Wichita Lineman'
7. Durutti Column - 'Tomorrow'
8. Talk Talk - 'The Rainbow'
9. John Cale - 'Paris, 1919'
10. Camberwell Now - 'Working Nights'
Kara-Lis Coverdale 4c2017 (predictions for the year ahead)
We see others in mirror image and enjoy a subliminal state of solidarity. On the woken surface of the mind; however, we fear-swim in a sea of replacements, longing for (and to be) that which is irreplaceable. But what has never been heard or seen or felt? The white horse rides toward no-one who orders for her. Agency grows proportionately with affection and the capacity to empathize freely. Ultimate compatibility is tested in the (hub demanding) notion that one port could support all; new solutions for articulating function thus become imperative. Unbound and hyperconnected to external sympathies of our newest selves, the exclusionary magnets at the tips of our extremities loose polarity in realization of their own limits and are slowly overcome by boundless poly-arias of reflection…
Kristoffer Cornils (Groove Magazine) Top 5 Releases From 2016 You Didn't Know Were Ghostwritten OMG What Has Techno Become These Days SMH
Rose Mardit (Juno Plus) A baker’s dozen of vaguely uplifting tracks that helped me get through 2016
Kedr Livanskiy - Razrushitelniy Krug [2MR]
Four Legs - Clearwater Bay [The Trilogy Tapes]
Don’t DJ - Southern Shore [SEXES]
Central - Twice the Space in Space [Help Recordings]
Copeland & Gast - Sisters of Control [All Bone]
Les Halles - Transient [Not Not Fun]
Ma Spaventi - Titantic Moments [M>O>S Recordings]
Steven Julien - Jedi [Apron]
Africans With Mainframes - Sense of Place Strength of Being [Mathematics]
Bear Bones, Lay Low - Nubes De Miel [Rush Hour No ‘Label’]
LNS - Matariki [Freakout Cult]
Jayda G - Fathom Five [1080p]
SW. - Untitled C2 [SUED]
17 songs that soundtracked my mind-body dissociation and bicameral breakdown during a year in which i more or less lost all faith in trusted institutions, presented facts, information modalities, pragmatic approaches to social change, mathematical formulae, and the ability of intelligent, self-aware people to interrogate their worldviews at the most fundamental level
Yamaneko (Local Action) 16 rare instances of light in this year of our abyss 2016
pokemon sun/moon ferry terminal theme this vine
finn b2b uniiqu3
flora - 琴
dj internet visions' digital illusion gold
pangaea - rotor soap
yaroze dream mix
grandmixxer set (@ anywhere)
księżyc boiler room
like ~all~ of anu's mixes
clubkelly - mitsuki
dj haram @ wild combo
logos' accela crash devil / autechre skeng rmx blend
mosca nts stl special
sharp veins' satellite reglaze
literally anything india jordan did