Bringing the latest electro-pop digs is Britain‘s increasingly talented Raffertie -a man that sits squarely at the top of the Ninja Tune roll call. Following his debut EPs Visual Acuity and Mass Appeal this Birmingham Conservatoire graduate has just released the run-up track Build Me Up to his forthcoming release on the 20th May. Personally, I can only hope that the now London-based producer will jettison his forays into the more brutal and cutting sounds from his first EPs. However, it is more likely this trend to bend and expel the variety of sonic investigation that began with his remix of Franz Ferdinand‘s No You Girls will continue. Although this time we hear him using his own vocals in a soothing and polyrhythmic groove that invokes both thoughtfulness and elation. Watch out for the new EP.
Faithful trouper of the Warp Records stable Clark hits Revolt Artspace in Kensington on Tuesday, 24th April. Clark headlines an electronica event that promises to deliver the goods. Bear witness also to Sarah Phelan dropping a producer/ dj showcase, Chiara Kickdrum performing a Live set, and spills & thrills by a chorus of other electro heart-stoppers including JPS, Matt Radovich, Fugitive, Xian, Pselodux, and Jacob Silver.
Clark is also on site to launch his new album Iradelphic and offers an impressive Audio-Visual show too. The Iradelphic release is one smooth record: delivering a minacious electro sound that Clark describes as “looming, ambiguous, radiant …whole, invincible, complete“. Doors open at 6pm -so get on down early as it‘s going to be a fully-rounded evening of aural enjoyment. Enjoy this video clip of Black Stone from the forthcoming album:
Ethereal electro-pop is a fairly loose term being bandied about at the moment. The resurgence of this reincarnation of early 80s synthesiser music has arguably been spear-headed by the Winding Refn film Drive. On this soundtrack, Refn invited Cliff Martinez to revisit the score he produced for the 1989 Steven Soderburgh film Sex, Lies, and Videotape. However, the sound emanating from Martinez‘ work goes back almost another decade: which brings us to All Through The Night. This song was written by Jules Shear -a modest 80s music producer that is also credited with the creation of the MTV Unplugged series. He wrote All Through The Night for The Cars and although they recorded the folk ballad, they did not release it on their Heartbeat City album, nor as a B-side on their Drive single. Shear, however, did his own recording and released the song on his 1983 solo album Watch Dog. The next year, following a failed collaborative effort between Lauper and Shear, Lauper decided she would record an unrevised cover of the song. During the recording sessions at NYC‘s Record Plant the track began to take on a new form and was completed in a style that epitomises the early 80s synth ballads which, as mentioned, seem to be experiencing a revival of late. Have a listen to this live version from 1984:
Maus is a music artist that combines a brevity of songwriting with an aptitude in arrangement to bring beautfiul music to the fore. His brittle low-fidelity electro pop stems from a 1980s pop culture influence that has been refined through a prism of academia; having studied music extensively at CalArts and gaining a PhD in Philosophy from the University of Hawaii.
The release featured below is 2006′s Through The Skies For You from his first commercial album Songs, that followed on from over a decade of self-produced records that he released ‘underground’. The track is accompanied by a video excerpt from the spectacular late 1950s live action Fuhrer ZZZ Japanese television series; an early manga precursor to what subsequently became Astro Boy.
Maus is enchanting in the release of his music as far as I am concerned; he uses perhaps romantic mediums such as cassettes and coloured vinyl.
He is certainly a craftsman of auditory sensation as you may agree from listening yourself:
John Maus is on Upset The Rhythm records.
I’m sat here listening to this disc; the latest offering from French powerhouse label Kitsuné. I picked up this release a few days ago and am quite glad I’d held off listening to it until I was in such a mood as I am in now.
Thus, the record is quite good; if but a tad heavily produced. The album; Tourist History opens with track Cigarettes In The Theatre, which strikes as a somewhat upbeat tune -jovial and easy to digest, melodic while establishing a sound of the European summer in the vein of a Killers or early Franz Ferdinand B-side. Tracks 3 & 4 move through with a charm of melancholic repetition that is to be admired; admonishing earlier typecasting mentioned for Track 1. The sound digresses with the cruisiness that is Something Good Can Work; however the songs continue to wind up when one is just beginning to immerse oneself in its quaint yet rhythmic beauty.
The standout tracks are reluctantly Cigarettes, I Can Talk, Eat Up and Something Good -insomuch as this is an album that demonstrates an excellent continuity and is quite certain to further impress on repeated visits. Hear it for yourself, perhaps?
-Rock The Boat