If you are already acquainted with Yoni Yarchi’s fine, life-affirming productions then this latest affair co-produced alongside John Acquaviva (who also launches this fresh imprint) will satisfy all of those qualities all over again. In a sense tuning into this blissful yet thought-provoking escape into sound provides its own set of challenges by creating a sense of melancholy longing, which is in turn deftly contrasted by the warm glow of reassurance. Riah Alsahra begins this journey with a large splash of primary colour as strummed instrumentation spills out across a bed of emotive pads, snippets of ethereal voice and punchy, resolute percussion, it all feels beautifully all-consuming. Accompanied by the suitably titled Cool Breeze Dub this is released just in time for the unfolding summer of expectations ahead.
I can’t tell you how exciting this is. It kind of reminds me about nights in the early nineties which were too far gone to forget. Although, defiantly plays like a breath of freshly charged air in context of today’s repeatedly boring repetition. It’s an actual song, albeit delivered with a blaze of Punk attitude by Emilie Albisser, set against an array of tempting, intense synthesizers delivering a riot of explosive energy. Remixes come from a keyboard expanding Nightwave who adds a cutting edge to the keys, and from D’Marc Cantu who carves a more brutal, contrasting atmosphere into the arrangement.
It feels appropriate to listen to Tom Demac’s newly founded creation as blue skies drift by outside in the morning light of cool. Serenade pulses with a breezy energy that lifts the senses skyward as pointed piano smoulders, producing hints of yearning in amongst the probing drums and questioning voiceover. Is the word ethereal correct here? Next distracting from all that light relief is the much tougher Seventh Sign which as the name suggests gets darker with fizzy Acid lines erupting over a wealth of electronically charged drums, while also incorporating a strange blend of sounds to excite in other directions. Second Skin, then gets darker still with broken rhythms simmering across moody pads to end.
Introducing itself via a beautifully dangerous, richly addictive intensity this record hits all the right notes joining soaring techno notation together with a relentless arrangement of ideas and energy. The original version feels that touch deeper, though no less impactful, as space is given to the drums and smouldering vocals to weave their magic on this startlingly, brilliant highlight of the year so far. The brutal stabs alone combine to produce one of the heaviest, most celebratory moments you are likely to witness, while Man Power’s remix hits you with deft percussion plus a bold rush of bass alongside those infectious chords, amidst the whirlwind of excitement leaving all breathless.
Never underestimate the power of music to transport and elevate your mind into places and spaces as only it can. Soulfuric has provided the accompaniment to many DJ’s soundtracks over the years and this release touches upon many of those moments with grace and favour. Typically featuring warm, soulful and of course jazzy sounds this practically instrumental number has the word groove blazing all over it. And that’s mainly down to the punchy, perfectly played bassline which makes you reminisce about the days of real instrumentation (almost) alongside the hazy horn blasts and breezy synthesized melodies of People Everywhere. The Jazz-N-Groove Prime Time Extended Mix follows altering the feel of the bass and extended the piano lines into a grasp for sunshine.
Recognising the resilient essence of the perfect bassline: hard-hitting and resolutely funky, Field Of Dreams aka Chris Kentish and Alan Mackenzie celebrate Dance Music’s, specifically Chicago’s on the opener, heady days with these three hot and newly primed cuts. The excellent Losing My Soul sequences addictive kick drums together with shuffling snares, plus the aforementioned bassline and a sublime sense of its own intensity. The expression, what’s not to love, feels particularly apt at a guess. Track 2, follows charged with funkier, eighties channelled bass, leaving the compelling chimes alongside crisp drum-breaks and tough production values of Track 3 to finish off hinting at the next decade.
Sidestepping both his work with the Submotion Orchestra and Matthew Halsall’s Gondwana Orchestra the pianist breaks out on his own to release this immersive collection of thought-provoking pieces, which may well radically engage your mind. Accompanied by Cello and occasional drums alongside violin and viola this is music seeking to find itself in amongst a world of diverse influences. Citing one of the main protagonists as Alan Clarke’s film ‘Penda’s Fen’ the sounds may probe at introspection, yearning for answers, yet all the while feel resilient resolving into a sometimes uplifting sequence of events. The rush of notes that hit you on the ironic, Time To Practise touch joyous parts, referencing the classical traditions of Steve Reich, and are then contrasted by the more experimental playfulness of the proceeding Ethical Tourist. Returning to the title track, Reclaimed Goods provides a more immersive experience as melancholy keys dive into depths resolving via the addition of moving strings amid the blissful echo of a booming background beat. The album is a curious combination of robust, fully formed music such as Every Saint Has A Past, along with the warmly nostalgic melodies boasted by Black Flowers, which are in turn contrasted by the majority of stripped down works that perhaps challenge deeper emotions most readily – teasing out particular nuances on first observation that are sometimes rare in these days of the blindingly obvious.
If you have already been eagerly consuming with fervour the series including: Close To The Noise Floor, Noise Reduction System and the Third Noise Principle then this collection celebrating each of those individually brilliant compilations, which challenged the mainstreams of boredom and musical conformity, will feel like a conformation of everything you have already thought. Dazzling flashes of genius emerge including Nagamatzu’s spell-binding Faith alongside supremely tempting numbers from the likes of Thomas Leer, D.A.F, The Legendary Pink Dots, along with Richard Bone’s liquid-funk ingenuity of Mambopolis plus a whole lot more. Not only bravely corrupting a sense of music’s decency but underpinning, underlining inspiration for the electronic future that was about to erupt onto the population en masse only a few years later. A lot of these sounds were deliberately defiant and are all the more wonderful in doing so. But perhaps some of the best words are saved for last as the Simulation Stimulation (Edit) by Hunting Lodge completes this six sides of vinyl heaven (or hell) with an almost idealistic, unrepentant intensity to be savoured and relished in glorious, riotous technicolour.
Welcome to Magazine Sixty, Per Hammar. Let’s begin with your new single due out on INFUSE: Conscious EP which you have co-produced alongside Rossko. Tell us about how you got introduced to each other and how have you found the experience of co-producing, as opposed working as a solo artist?
Hey! It actually all started with a high five in the booth at Watergate here in Berlin. I was supposed to play the closing set, and was ready to take over from Ross when he drops a track from me and Edvin Wikner,”Lindström”.
We hadn’t met before, and I thought he played the track since I was there, but he hadn’t seen me. So I was like “Nice one! high five” And he responded High five!”Who are you by the way?!” The day after we had coffee and then we produced for one year.
Since I’ve started to make music by myself over a decade ago, I’ve only done a few collaborations. I need the space to be able to try stuff and do weird things without explaining why. Also I need to feel relaxed. Not many producers can give me this, but Ross is definitely one of them.
The first track on the EP: Unconscious is a brilliant combination of sights, sound and voices. Can you talk us through how the piece was created, including the more unconventional pieces of software/ hardware you used in the production?
A funny thing with this track is that it was actually the first track we ever started together. Even if it kinda came together smoothly, it did take at least 15 sessions. We had 3-4 different drafts that we played during the weekends for research. We just started jamming in my studio with my usual suspects: The eurorack, x0xb0x, Yamaha DX-27 and tons of Roland RE-301. For all the little blips and glitches we used a Форманта УДС, a Ukrainian drum machine from the 80’s USSR. During one of our lunch breaks we found a cassette with hypnosis exercises in a box of trash on the sidewalk, Neukölln style. Back in the studio we recorded it and used it as a vocal in the track.
You recently celebrated your eight year anniversary of Kiloton in Malmö, Sweden (the club who co-run with Kajsa Lindström). Eight years is a long time these days. What do you put the success of the night down to, and what do you feel can be offered by regular nights that one-off festivals cannot?
At the night during our first birthday party I remember one of the owners of the venue telling me”Thanks for a great year! Let’s aim for one more, yeah?” Indicating that it would be cool, but let’s see how it goes. Suddenly we’re here 8 years later. I think the most important ingredient is to work with real people that you can communicate with. Someone needs to be the party pooper that sometimes say no to things due to financial reasons, and you need someone that says yes to things so you don’t ending up in a loop of planning.
Malmö is a small city with a very tight scene. If you’re true to the crowd, they will be true back.
You are originally from Sweden and now live in Berlin. How would you describe the two cities and what has living in each taught you?
That’s a really interesting question. I questioned it myself a lot while living in Malmö. Compared to other cities around the world with around 300.000 citizens, Malmö has an outstanding scene. We have a few artists heading from here. Minilogue/Sebastian Mullaert, DJ Seinfeld, Kontra Musik and Patrick Siech to name a few. When I moved there in 2007 until a few years ago the electronic scene was thriving. There was underground parties driven by enthusiastic people pretty much in the city center. You could go out and see big international DJ’s Fridays and Saturdays on a wide selection of clubs. On top of that we had a quite big punk scene, squatting houses where they threw techno parties. The whole scene was, and still is, intimate and very friendly. Something really special actually. The pulse of the community gave me the energy to keep on doing what I wanted. And for many years I didn’t wanna be anywhere else.
Which is not a completely common thought, when most people working with something cultural in Sweden move to Stockholm. Things changes and so did Malmö, and I felt I wanted more of the belonging to the scene. Then Berlin was the obvious choice. It’s the completely opposite of the friendly scene in Malmö, but on the other hand I met so many new friends and created so much more music than I ever did before.
Your music has a very free-flowing, almost improvisational quality to it. You are your main influences both within and outside of electronic music – any particular writers, poets, painters or musicians?
It’s nice to hear that you notice that. I used to be inspired by music within the electronic dance music genre. But more and more I’m enjoying to start with a completely clean slate. Wake up in the morning and hit the coffee maker. Do a quick beat and jam on the euro rack and dub things through my tape delays and spring reverbs. I often ending up doing takes that are 2, 3, 4 minutes long. Maybe it only loops once or twice during the whole track. It’s actually a bit contradictory since loopy, distinct stuff is what matters on the floor. But this is just how I do, I guess.
But I can’t hide that I’m very influenced by the scrappy stripped sound of older dub cuts. The simplicity and rawness of stripping everything down to just the beat, and let the musical parts just come in once in a while drowned in space echoes, phasers and reverbs. Just on and on and on. No hooks no nothing. It’s like meditation, you know.
You run two record labels: Dirty Hands and 10YEARS. Tell us about what for you the positive and minus factors of doing so are in 2019?
My labels gives me the security of being able to do exactly what I want. The minus is that if I do exactly what I want, there’s no filter between my brain and the rest of the world.
To make sure to stand out of the ocean of new labels during past years, one trick was to give your music out on vinyl to show that at least someone believe in the music on the record. When everyone adapt to that concept, the vinyl sales drops of course. Despite that, 10YEARS will remain as an outpost for mine and Maya’s (Parallax Deep) more minimal sounding productions, which fits good for the vinyl format in my opinion. Dirty Hands works more like an umbrella for all my creative ideas. Besides the vinyl’s I’ll keep on doing label parties, mix tape cassettes, clothes and stuff. There is no limitation really.
Talk us through a typical working day (or night) in your studio. How has the space evolved, and do you have one keyboard or instrument which you couldn’t live without?
I like to hit the studio as early as possible. My productivity window is between 10:00 and 14:00. I often work in bursts of a few hours. Long sessions and tired ears is not for me. I have a few things that I literally can’t be without. The Roland RE-301, Fender spring reverbs and my tape recorders for example. My two cases of euro rack modules would also be hard to live without these days.
What does DJ’ing mean for you? What do you seek to convey to people when you play?
I’m not trying to say something with the music I play in my DJ sets. It’s instrumental rhythms with a bass on it. It’s made for dancing. And if it trigger a feeling in someone on the floor, it’s something personal I think. Everyone has their own angle to the music, and I think it’s nice to leave it like that. It’s not complex art or something.
To me it’s a pleasure to work around people that just want to let go of everyday life for a minute and just enjoy. And it’s a huge honor to be able to play my own productions and get feedback in return from the crowd that I can use in the studio.
And finally. Tell us about your forthcoming plans for the future?
2019 is busy! First up is mine and Rossko’s”Conscious EP”, which drops on Infuse March 29th. Three tracker 12”.
In April, me and Malin Génie will drop the first EP in our new collaboration series,”Scania EP” on Malin Génie Music. Our next record will drop later this summer.
Later in the spring there will be a new 10YEARS record, 10YEARS12. It’s a 12” split with me and Parallax Deep called “Trim/External”.
After that I’ll drop a track called Short Waves on the London label Planetary Notions, a 12” V/A in May.
The a V/A track with Malin Génie on Berg Audio in June.
And finally there will be new Dirty Hands record. This time from Edvin Wikner and his track,”Skritt”. Comes with a remix from me and Rowlanz. More info about that soon!
You add the words minimal and pianist together and you may think you have an answer. But that would be a disservice as to what you are about to experience when listening to the Dutch artist, Joep Beving who returns with this third album in the series. In the world of electronic music you can also sometimes dance to (which is what we triumph at Magazine Sixty) it can be easy to forget about avenues to explore in the expanse of music outside. Moods, emotions and textures which aren’t always readily available to the set formula are played here with a beautiful, precise poise by Joep Beving as envelopes of synthesized sound whisper a wealth of ever-expanding suggestion around the resolute, yet occasionally fragile, notation. It’s like your grasping at a sense of wonder as the universe explodes brilliantly in colour. And while that might sound all a bit Timothy Leary there is still truth in it. From the tense repetitions of Apophis, through to the smouldering keys and accompanying melancholy strings concluding The One As Two, or even before that point on the yearning Whales, or as found on the bold chords of Sirius, this rich amalgamation of electrical sounds and classical traditions are realised perfectly with history resolving itself into present moments. Henosis is a music searching for something lost. And now found.