Paul Bowen – Dubbed Out Vol 2 – Luna Records

If you think the clue lies solely within title, think again. Paul Bowen’s starling reworking of the implications of the word Dub are as vibrant as they are incendiary with each of the three numbers exploring the sonic palette via a powerful eloquence. Starting with Bonehead you’d be forgiven for second-guessing a clueless nature but this fiery bass pounding workout if anything but feeling vibrant with its sparkling array of percussion and effects firing off in all directions. The searing rays of Possbile illuminate next with deep bass driving expectation forwards alongside tripped out, heavy-duty voices and a dark whir of atmospheric synth lines. The crazed, disturbance forming the low-end of excellent Entire completes with a twist you’re unlikely to forget in a rush but then again the same goes for the whole EP.

Release: August 6
https://www.facebook.com/pbowenuk
https://luna-records.co.uk

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Jichael Mackson – Flat Moon Society EP – RFR Records

In the way that anagrams like twists of fate surprise you by revealing their hidden meaning Jichael Mackson’s retelling of electronic sequence is nothing short of mind-expanding. Digital Dust begins by teasing your senses via a deliberate expanse of knowledge that plays deftly with sound and imagination in equal measure. Sitting somewhere between radical and chic and funk there are more ideas worked out in the course of its five minutes of existence than the time it takes to say disco re-edit. The inquisitive, impassioned strains of Family Biz follow by digging deeper into consciousness with hints of jazzy interpretation likewise hitting the five spot while containing a bassline to live for. Finally is ATH which reignites a passion for Acid rebelliousness in ways that simulate being dangerous alongside the seemingly bizarre and yet makes total sense of it all. Marvellous.

Release: August 3
buy https://www.juno.co.uk/products/jichael-mackson-flat-moon-society-ep/838463-01/
https://jichaelmackson.bandcamp.com
www.rfr-records.com

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Yard One – Snowy Sunday In Oslo EP – Tact Recordings

You could live within the confines of this beautifully atmospheric shot alone but by adding the accompanying sequence of elegant notes this release feels all the more unique. Jordan Bruce and Larry Jones have produced three tantalising productions beginning with the striking repetitions of Aquilaria which chimes with soulfully charged intent over a fizzy glitch of electronic drum-machines alongside a gentle, yet informed, expanse of tastefully synthesized sound. Next is Sleepy Ghost (Part Deux) which not surprisingly is a touch darker with heavier pads colouring the mood, leaving the evocative strains of Snowy Sunday In Oslo to reignite a more vigorous approach via its rugged bass plus punchy shuffle of beats.

Release: August 3
https://linktr.ee/YardOne
https://www.facebook.com/Tact.Recordings

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APOTEK Q&A

Welcome to Magazine Sixty, Elisa. Let’s start with the music you grow up with and how it informed your attitudes to life? Which bands/musicians remain the most important to you?

I grew up listening to a lot of 60s and 70s rock and folk music. When I was a child, I used to listen to my mum’s records. She owned a small vinyl collection with lots of classics from the likes of The Beatles, Rolling Stones, Jefferson Airplane, The Doors, Dire Straits etc.

The band I discovered later in my twenties that still definitely remain very important to me is Radiohead. For me, it’s the best band of all time. Thom Yorke is a genius.

Can you talk us through how you produced your new single: Black Dolls? Any favourite pieces of software/ hardware you always use?

I remember producing Black Dolls in my home studio in Brussels back in October 2019. The main synth I used is a Prophet V3 from Arturia which made me fall in love with that sound and pushed me to buy a real analogue Prophet VI later that year. I used Massive for the bass and recorded the vocals in a studio.

The Microkorg is not my favourite piece of hardware but, for some reason I end up using it quite a lot. For software, I tend to quite often use Arturia’s V Collection, Native Instrument’s Massive and Wave’s Alchemy Revolution.

Do you feel the human voice has as much to say in Dance/ Electronic music anymore? What inspires you to write the words you do? (I was particularly struck by your intonation on the jazzy/ blues of Dying Stars from the new album.)

I think it depends on the song and the artist.

Dying Stars is a song I wrote many years ago on the piano. It belongs to a phase where I was mostly listening to jazz and blues. I still don’t know how the lyrics of that song came through. When I compose, I tend to let myself be inspired by the energy of the moment. The lyrics I write are very similar to those kind of dreams where you can hardly find a logic in the narrative, but if you go deeper and you try to analyse them, you may find lots of hidden meanings.

What do you hope will change after Covid-19 for club culture and live performance?

First of all, what I hope the most is that all venues and clubs forced to close their doors will be able to reopen. But I doubt this will be the case if we think about the very poor financial support they have received from governments. I think it will take a long time for the industry to recover from this crisis.

How do you see music’s future in terms of how artists generate money? Tell us about the decision to self-release your own music?

With the constant changes in the ways people listen to music, the future of the industry, and what artists stand to gain, is unclear. As we all know, musicians have always made the bulk of their money from live performances and touring. For the future, I hope they could also benefit from greater sources of revenue coming from streaming platforms. I think, there’s a urgent need for a more transparent and equitable model of streaming royalty distribution.

With regard to my music, I decided to self-release this album because I wanted to have a complete control over the creative process. I was afraid a label would have prompted me for a particular sound, selecting which songs should or should not be released.

What is your favorite instrument? Do you own one?

I’m in love with analogue and vintage synthesizers. As said before, I’ve recently bought a Prophet VI. I particularly like how it sounds.

Your new album: Unknown territories is a blend of styles, moods and atmosphere’s. What do you seek to convey most through your music?

I think it depends on the song. Sometimes I seek to convey an idea, sometimes an emotion, sometimes just nothing at all. Writing this album has been a sort of stream of consciousness, a therapeutic and cathartic act. I’ve just followed the flow.

Outside of music who/ what inspires you (in terms of any painters, writers, poets etc)?

Among the philosophers: Karl Jung, James Hilman, Noam Chomsky, Immanuel Kant, Alexander Lowen.
Among the painters: Gerhard Richter, Jackson Pollock.

And finally. What are you looking forward to most for the remainder of 2021?

I look forward to writing more music and working on a live set which will probably include part of the songs from the album.

buy/ listen to APOTEK – Unknown Territories https://ffm.to/unknownterritories
https://apotekmusic.com

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John Sellekaers – Observer Effect – Glacial Movements

Recapturing the search for moments of lost memory John Sellekaers’ brave expedition into unchartered territory serves as a reward for the depth of meaning. Observer Effect is unnerving yet warmly emotional as landscapes are surveyed via the whir of synthesized sound which flows freely, seemingly without the constriction of boundaries and all the while points you in directions to be discovered. It is of course deeply introspective sensing that space in-between light and dark but equally it’s an exhilarating experience such as on the soaring On the Trail, while the contrasting Shelter provides a reassuring embrace.

Release: July 16
Buy glacialmovements.bandcamp.com/album/observer-effect
https://johnsellekaers.com

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Silvio Astier – Viguela – Earthly Measures

Offering the true temptation of notable difference – although quite why the flair of imaginative musicality should qualify thus is a mystery – Silvio Astier’s guitar lays bare the essence of human emotion across six contemplative strings strung out across heavens high. Four numbers occupy the space of this rewarding release of sound each providing a unique escape into atmospheric substance from beginning to end. Sometimes accompanied by drums it is however the introspection of mood which is chiefly explored throughout and is done so in creative ways harnessing the innate power of electricity in the process.

Release: July 23
Buy https://earthlymeasures.bandcamp.com/album/vig-ela-ep
Silvio Astier https://www.elalmacenmusical.com

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Shaun Reeves – The Eye That Sees Us All – Visionquest

The Eye That Sees Us All has appeared at precisely the right moment. Free from restrictions, open to all interpretations this collection of intriguing, imaginative sounds is a positive feast of stimulating aural pleasure much as the title track demonstrates via shivering voices, stripped back drum-machines alongside a wealth of finely tuned atmospheric tones and noises. The rigorous, impassioned rhythms of Lucy Sky Diamond follows with deep pulsing stabs amid defiant electrical swirls pursuing the notion that music can be eloquently emotional at the same time as being creative and forward-thinking. The brisk dancefloor tempo of Arethusa is next, leaving the more twisted electro elements of Temple Day to do just that. The deep bass punctuating Clair de Lune feels compelling as do the assorted expansions of tripped out sounds which play with rhythm and possibility in neat, equal measure. So by the time the exceptional final number, Tropik Sadness feat. Falco Nero hits all things are suitably bent in and out of shape as percussive intensity along with the knowing pleasure of echoed expanse collectively speaks volumes about this excellent debut album from Shaun Reeves.

Release: July 23
Buy https://www.juno.co.uk/products/shaun-reeves-the-eye-that-sees-us/837911-01/
https://www.facebook.com/shaunreevesmusic

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Jay Duncan ft. Ben Vince – In Limbo – Phantasy Sound

I also love music that speaks its own mind. Not caring too much about the sensitivities of trends or the front cover of shiny magazines. This ticks a hundred boxes for me with its collaboration between DJ/ Producer Jay Duncan and saxophonist Ben Vince charting uneasy, unnerving territory via a defiant whir of electrifying, electrical impulse. Add to that a sense of danger as drums ebb and flow, sounds collide and rhythms fire-up pulsing supremely. All of which feels free-form to the point of creating the ultimate, expressive potential on the title track, In Limbo. Hats off to Phantasy Sound for releasing forward-thinking music of such calibre too.

And then we come to Ricardo Villalobos who feels particularity apt to interrupt the abstract nature of it all. Charting some fourteen minutes of analogue infused character there is an almost Classical sense of direction in the way the music has been constructed, more about the architecture of change and movement than safety in numbers as sections of sounds introduce themselves and then dissipate, reappearing at will. Deeply sensual just like it is resolutely soulful, much as anything else deserving of that point of reference the music seeks to satisfy more than mere historical impulse to remain important, energised and evangelical.

Second track, Anti-Purgatorio has a fizzy, dazzling array of beats and machine fuelled percussion to also satisfy the need this time flexing more muscular grooves, though no less innovative and impactful. Let’s hope there is an album to follow…(PS. sterling Artwork by Patrick Savile).

Release: July 16
Buy https://lnk.to/JayDuncanPH106
https://www.facebook.com/drumsofjay
https://shop.phantasysound.co.uk

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Lunar Orbit Rendezvous – Faith/Reason – Ransom Note Records

I like beautiful music. The sort that probes, diving into the unknown. Sometimes high, sometimes low. Belfast producer Gregory Ferguson (LOR) has produced a series of events to form this album of sounds, moods and atmospheres that readily generate synthesized noise into shapes that bounce notably around the stereo. Partly composed via inspiration from the night-time of the 1980’s but also with a heavy dash of 2021 production values the tracks stimulate a sense of wonder such as on the wonderful, reflective title track Faith/Reason. The darker, though equally rewarding Aspen Trees tells different tales, leaving the gentle melodies of Eno-esque, Karesuando to complete. Faith/Reason presents an album which paints an imaginative picture while rewarding you with a combination of light and shade that journey’s elegantly throughout the passage of time.

Release: July 16
Buy https://ransom-note-records.lnk.to/Faith-Reason
https://www.facebook.com/LOR.Belfast

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The Gaye Device – Structures – Submarine Broadcasting Company

The sounds contained within Structures are seemingly unconnected to the nature of the title as they are let free to fly with a fistful of emotions granting the expanse of potential. Though structured in the sense that they do form pieces of music about cause and effect. The effect being one of introspection as much as it is about openness to light, dark and shades in-between – I always seem to refer to memory in this process too, but I wonder if that’s just me? The titles vary from the serene Heavenly Toy through to the blistering Lay In Timeless Power, with liquid compensation in the form of Desolate Purity. The concluding fourteen minutes of the exquisite Beyond The Immortal Light should likewise give you indication of the intended direction of travel. A place you will want to land.

buy https://submarinebroadcastingco.bandcamp.com/album/structures
https://www.facebook.com/thegayedevice

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