Death Grips – Fashion Week

Death Grips builds up to the release of it’s supposedly final album with an LP of instrumentals.

Aaron Dilloway & Jason Lescalleet – “Western Nest”

“Popeth” means “everything” in Welsh. It’s also the name of the latest collaborative full-length from enlightened noisesmiths Aaron Dilloway and Jason Lescalleet, properly following up their 2012 team-up Grapes and Snakes. Above, find Popeth centerpiece “Western Nest,” whose masterful bonding of lulling electronic pulses and high frequencies suggests a peak of unity between the two artists. Truly, the entire project lives up to its name - it is in essence the culmination of Dilloway and Lescalleet’s combined efforts in sonic manipulation and the creation of a holistic soundscape up to this point.

Popeth is out now via Glistening Examples.

Death Grips – Fashion Week

With the title and track names of new instrumental soundtrack Fashion Week, Death Grips at last answers the age-long question “jenny death when?” – probably in time for the New York and London Fashion Weeks, which start 12 and 20 February, respectively (the 10th would seem to be a safe bet).

That said, I’m happy to find that this collection of 14 new tracks is much more than a mere hint. Ride’s vocals are of course absent, but these instrumentals do well to amass potency along their decidedly linear paths. These cuts themselves really seem to be up on the runway, strutting their stuff with an unprecedented balance of boldness and poise.

Kraftwerk – Trans-Europe Express

This latest installation of CLASSICS WEEK 2014 focuses on one of electronic music’s most pivotal albums: Kraftwerk’s Trans-Europe Express.

Oneohtrix Point Never/A.G. Cook – “Rush”/”Bubs”

Oneohtrix Point Never has just shared an outtake from R Plus Seven called “Rush,” supplementing it with a short-but-sweet collaborative track with A.G. Cook,  founder of London label PC Music, which specializes in a brand of “bubblegum bass” that I’m not sure I get yet. This feels right.

DOS4GW – Suiside B

DOS4GW is an underground beatmaker that has been consistently blowing my mind since 2007. The dark, fierce, electronic noise that has been emanating from his bedroom for the past few years has grown more varied and more interesting with each project, so naturally this new album, Suiside B, is pretty exciting. Slightly reminiscent of Tobacco and BMSR, the album is as mottled as it is expansive, with overdriven metallic waves broken up by steady beats, drum-and-bass punctuation, and trippy fluorescent crescendos. Check it out above and enjoy!

Suiside B is out now via Smokers Cough.

- Fin Worrall

Lotic – “From the Front” (ft. Dr. Luke, Rabit, Sugur Shane, DJ Karfox, Big Hud, Fat Pimp)

Lotic’s self-released mini-album Damsel In Distress was named one of the best of 2014 by FACT Magazine, referring to it as a mixtape of “gothic club nightmares”. Quite a description of the Berlin, Germany DJ/Producers’ brand of dark yet satisfying, enrapturing club music. And “From The Front” only helps to add to Lotic’s mystique: it’s a grab bag of disturbingly distorted southern voices and lyrics that are paired with a production job that includes elements of trap, trance, gritty grime and crunchy, squeaky dubstep, all competing with each other for attention but still working seamlessly together. Lotic, along with his collaborators (Dr. Luke, Rabit, Sugur Shane, DJ Karfox, Big Hud and Fat Pimp) have created a song that’s sure to be considered an eerie, almost ghostly but exciting and bouncy certified club/strip joint banger.

-Ron Grant

James Blake – 200 Press

Fans of the London-based producer will have new material to tide them over until the rumored release of his next full-length, expected to drop sometime in 2015. The 200 Press EP consists of four tracks that might seem strange on their own, but come across as united in their oddity.

In a change of pace from the songs on his two previous LPs, the focus is taken away from his delicate, R&B-influenced vocals; in fact, they are strikingly absent. Blake’s voice only makes appearances in the form of a few wispy, intermittent production flourishes and the warped out spoken word track closing out the EP. The instrumentals across these songs are varied, departing from the more direct, saccharine melodies of Blake’s recent work in favor of cryptic, sometimes harsh progressions. Underneath are some subtle 2-step and techno beats, complete with hushed and sculpted sub-bass, tight hi-hat, and all sorts of other blips and pops. Of the bunch, I think “Building It Still” is probably my favorite, but they’re all definitely worth a listen.

-Tom Fullmer

Shlohmo – “Emerge from Smoke”

Only a Shlohmo track can give you the sense of being stuck at the bottom of a deep well and then turn that well into a place of almost womb-like serenity.

The L.A. producer just premiered a single to be released March 17 via a collaboration between True Panther and his own WeDidIt collective. It’s out now on iTunes, but you can also pre-order the 7-inch here, which includes the single’s corresponding B-side, the promisingly titled “Ode 2 Tha Whip”.

There’s a lot to love on this track. “Emerge from Smoke” comes outfitted with a somber melody that lurches itself out in teetering synths and long, fuming bass tones that labor underneath to carry the song forward. As usual, Shlohmo demonstrates his awareness of how nuanced percussion can add entirely new dimensions to a track. All the syncopated plinking and hissing leads to a drum break punching in about half way through. Towards the end, the solitude is pierced by a gaggle of silvery, stricken guitars wailing up from the bottom of the well, and the percussion and synths come crashing back down on top of them in a final caterwaul.

The single arrives with the announcement of a spring 2015 tour, the dates of which you can check out here.

-Tom Fullmer

Liars – “Mask Maker” (Extended Version) (Video)

Released earlier this year, Liars’ diverse but focused project, Mess, received average to good reviews, mostly because even though it was interesting, progressive and at the same time still quite retro, they did little to stray from their usual early 2000s dance punk sound. The intro track “Mask Maker” led the pack with a viscous New Order-esque bass beat, peculiar lyrics and a synth horn section that could have come from a punk Atom Heart Mother; and was noticed as one of the best–if not the best–tracks on the record.

Consequently, the release of the new music video for “Mask Maker” was pretty exciting, as Liars would have the chance to put their aesthetic talent to use once again to match the boldness and power of the track. Characteristically the video features a minimalistic approach, each band member wearing white suits and being drenched in multicolored wool threads, with jumps from image to image in time with the beat. Although I would have enjoyed a reference to whatever the lyrics actually meant, I actually preferred the abstract approach.

If you haven’t heard the track, the video is an interesting accompaniment, and a must see for Liars aesthetic lovers.

- Fin Worrall