In the crowded constellation of budding bedroom starlets and lo-fi ego super-novas, light pollution turns into a time deficiency which robs the listener of their relative values. It’s an overload that Jef Barbara has no time for. In Barbara’s personal galaxy Brian Ferry, Ziggy Stardust, Jobraith, Brett Smiley et al are his forefathers, luminaries passing the baton on to the Montreal-based French Canadian. “About Singers” celebrates them, and possibly Barbara himself, in soft-focus, orgasmic balladeering. This isn’t the world of the Outsider, this is post-millennial glamor drawing succor from the retro-futuristic visions of larger-than-life heroes. On Barbara’s 2nd LP Soft To The Touch on Club Roll, it manifests as celestial guitar solos by long-haired androgynous wunderkids, 70s drum production and above all the massive presence of Barbara himself. But let’s not get carried away, for as Barbara states in the sting in the song’s tail “singers are very popular.. but in a few years from now, they won’t be remembered.”
Soft To The Touch will be available September 30 from Club Roll
Written by Michael Kasparis
Rarely has a wild audio ride been so full of twists and turns as the one we undertake with the latest music by Femminielli. Shanghai, C’est Beau is a beautiful, spooky, and lysergic trip of a record. Evoking Serge Gainsbourg with his French-Canadian whisper vocal style, while putting that influence through instrumental passages of noir-disco and new age synth tone colors, Femminielli’s created a work of real depth and something that can be listened to on repeat for hours. Throughout the experience of time spent deciphering his compositions, we were never clear if the darkness inside the music is meant to terrify because it is almost as equally gorgeous. When beats do pop out of the haze they don’t invite us to dance so much as to sit upright, look straight ahead, and pay close attention. One of the better releases thus far this year.
Shanghai, C’est Beau is now available from Clan Destine Records
Written by Jeff Daily
My 3 day trip to Brooklyn last May was filled with a series of interesting events, but none more interesting than my last night in the city. It all started at the debut Glasslands show for John Maus, which was put on by Altered Zones.
This spaced out, smoke filled event was one I’m sure a lot of people still remember till this day. His colorfully crazy stage antics and karaoke style live set-up was both insane, but also super rad. A lot of weird girls were licking each other and dancing like maniacs, which was fun to watch.
I ended up chatting with the man himself afterwards, which proved to be just as weird as you’d think. 20 minutes of randomness and talks about past problems he’s had at the border lead to him leaving abruptly with this cute brunette.
I think she said she interned for 4AD. She was super nice.
A few days later, I ran into a handsome gentleman at In God We Trust, who said he saw me at the show. We chatted for awhile and then he told me about this loft party Amdiscs was throwing and he wanted to know if I’d be his date for the night. I’d already had plans to be swoon by another man that evening(the man we all know as Alex Zhang), but something about this invitation seemed too good to pass up.
He was this gorgeous dutch boy, about 5’7, beautiful eyes, had great taste in music and fashion. He was easily one of the coolest dudes I’d met on this trip.
In that moment, the Dirty Beaches show fell from top priority to right off my radar and I found myself traveling to Bedstuay, hoping to have a pretty awesome night with this cute stranger. After hours of waiting, getting drunk off the open bar and being instantly moved by a band I’d never heard of at the time, Zambri, I realized that I’d been stood up. I decided to smoke a joint, have a few more cups of beer and then venture off to a bunch of random Brooklyn spots until the wee hours of the morning.
Thus begins the musical journey known as Requiem Disco. I crafted this mix based off the vibes of the night as a whole. These aren’t the songs that played that night, but everything seemed to move at this exact beat.
A lot of the first half is the vibes at the loft party. The OPN track is kind of when I realized that I’d be riding solo for the evening. The mix then moves straight into more weirdo party vibes, which was the name of the game that night.
Overall, I’d say my trip was fun and I got to see a lot of cool shows. The moral of this story is simple; always ditch shows for random babes. It’s fun and you end up wandering Brooklyn alone, which was pretty exciting for me because I’d only been there once before that.
Anyway, that’s my story.
Enjoy the mix!
Founder of Diamond Atlas
Diamond Atlas Presents: Requiem Disco (A Guest Mix For Intl Tapes) by Diamond Atlas
1. Ike Yard – NCP (0:00)
2. John Maus – Bennington (5:05)
3. Kontravoid – Cut The Cleanse (8:12)
4. Gatekeeper – Tree Drum (Pro-Gen Exo Mix) (12:50)
5. Oneohtrix Point Never – Returnal (16:29)
6. Sebastien Tellier – Look (Laurel Halo Remix) (20:55)
7. Odyssey – Who (24:49)
8. Low Motion Disco – Talk Low When In Space (28:10)
9. Laurel Halo – Supersymmetry (Physical Therapy 3-Step) (34:10)
10. Bobby Champs – Charlie (40:42)
11. Publicist – Hardwork (45:13)
12. Todd Terje – Italian Stallion (50:50)
13. Fort Romeau – SW9 (57:10)
14. Studio – Self Service (1:01:30)
15. CFCF – Cometrue (Physical Therapy Deep Forest Mix) (1:05:27)
16. Teengirl Fantasy – Cheaters (John Talabot’s Classic Vocal Refix) (1:11:40)
Submitted by Max Mohenu of Diamond Atlas
Ghibli is the project of Edmonton-based electronic producer Thomas Michael, a longtime fan of European house music, and whose soon to be released Rare Pleasures is a sharp effort towards hunting for house’s more disco-oriented roots, in the form of a thoroughly modern record that’s built entirely from samples ripped from Youtube videos. “Sixteen Moons” elucidates Ghibli’s self-imposed modus operandi through stroboscopic slices of high-pitched vocals that eventually wind up in complex syncopation around the beat. By jettisoning the more arcane approach towards house music that’s being taken by most underground producers, Ghibli excels in forging melodies that strive to hit the listener with the unrepressed pleasure of house you’ll be more likely to hear on commercial radio than featured on blogs.
Written by Pierre Lestruhaut
Montreal’s Bernardino Femminielli is back, and this time he’s got his white suit on, so you know he means business. “Atlantida” and it’s accompanying video by Sabrina Ratté guide you through liquid drone and disco that seems imported directly from a day-glo corner of the cyberspace grid that’s probably right down the block from the car lot Max Headroom opened when he retired from public life. All cultural allusions aside, this is a beautiful alignment of digital visual and musical synthesis. Whispered crooning gives the collage of synth, bass, and shredding guitar a human feel as we realize that 10 plus minutes have melted into the past. And yes, you can definitely dance to it.
Watch for Femminielli’s Sprezzatura on cassette this November from Robert and Leopold
By Luke Carrell
Femminielli is the ace solo synthesizer work of the Montreal-based musician Bernardino Femminielli. While the ominous chords, geometric leads, and forlorn march of the “Chauffeur’s” beat will be instantly familiar to any fan of the cold/minimal/new/dark/what have you wave(s), the charismatic web spun by the crooner-esque vocals and the overall precise but organic execution of this highly textural, affective piece distinguish it from the efforts of many other musicians who have ventured to or are currently exploring similarly bleak terrains. That’s not to imply that the music is in any way ubiquitous, rather that this particular stuff is going on the shelf beside some of our other favorites (see links above). The song manages a precise balance between intrigue and despair, making it the ideal soundtrack for that reckless high-speed drive along a coastal cliff road that you’ve been planning. Drive safely, be sure to watch for cyclists, and listen on repeat.
Femminielli’s split 7-inch with Araignée, a snappy pop collaboration between Dominic Vanchesteing and Bernardino Femminielli, is now available from Fixture Records
Written by Luke Carrell
My mother told me that the dreams she remembers are always the ones that play out situations in her life she has forgotten. She likes to call them ‘reminders’. I found this fascinating because for the past couple of months I’ve been trying to master the art of lucid dreaming. However, my efforts are proving it difficult and I find myself waking up without a trace of remembering what I even dreamt about in the first place. The dreams I do remember are always ones that evoked particular emotions. Here is a collection of songs that were inspired by feelings I’ve experienced in dreams, feelings that I’ve forgotten, and feelings that hopefully one day help pilot where my mind wanders off to during sleep.
01 Pantha Du Prince – Asha
02 Do Make Say Think - Anything For Now
03 Chamapagne Diamond - Scattern & Yearn
04 NEON CANYON - Pekoe
05 Boards of Canada – Tears From The Compound Eye
06 Colleen – Summer Water
07 Noveller - 6 Fades
08 Belong – I Never Lose, Never Really
09 Knots – Peacedreams
10 Gang Gang Dance – God’s Money IX
11. Murcof - Cosmos II
12 Jacaszek - Rytm to Niesmiertelnosc
13 Morgan Greenwood - Die Neue Serie
14 Blue Hawaii – Sparkle Refund
15 Arovane - Lilies
16 Oneohtrix Point Never - Ouroboros
17 Eluvium – Show Us Our Homes
18 Jon Brion - Peer Pressure
19 Brian Eno & Harold Budd – Among Fields Of Crystal
20 Claude Debussy - Clouds
21 Kyle Gann – As The Day Is Long
Native Speaker is available now via Kanine Records
Submitted by Katie Lee of Braids
The Ketamines are sweet garage band from Alberta, CA featuring some members from the excellent Myelin Sheaths and Fist City. Ketamines have big plans for 2k11, including a 7″ due out soon on Hozac, and a full length set to release in the summer. “Line By Line” was the catchy pop number that originally hooked me in, but recently I can’t stop jamming to “A Rotten Bond”, a raw, reverb intoxicated punk tune laced with epic psychedelic synth explosions. The track is a bit creepy, but totally brilliant and will leave you feeling warm in all the right places.
Written by Krissy Rubbles
Alberta has one of the best DIY/hardcore scenes in Canada, if not the world. It is also essentially unknown to that world, for reasons that are partly due to a lack of touring and recording infrastructure, but are also largely geographical. I could tell you about the weird, harmonious convergence of political punks, hipster kids from the suburbs, and feral children from outlying rural areas that took place over the past four years. I could tell you about the pioneering cassette label Bart Records, and the seemingly police-impervious house venue Castle Awesome, around which much of this scene has centered and developed. I could tell you at length about the historical and political precedents that make punk rock flourish in a conservative province with an oil-driven economy. I could even compile 11 recordings of bands from that scene, many of which were recorded in raw live takes and were never intended to have a broad listenership. But none of that would do anything to show you exactly how significant it feels to be in a basement in Edmonton, screaming along and hurling your body into people who you know would never hurt you, not for anything.
1. Gift Eaters – Dues
2. Gyre, Spire and Spindle – Mommy Daddy
3. Maus – Horrors Manufactured Here
4. Grown-Ups – The Lo-Fi Button
5. Snic – MXM FKNGT
6. Bayonets!!! – Glassteeth
7. Red Hot Daggers – VI
8. High Jinks – Love is Love
9. Cope – Possessions
10. Stalwart Sons – Wisdom Teeth
11. Fuck the Tundra – The Good Harvest
Check out Gobble Gobble’s new album Wrinklecarver, you can download it for free or buy the 7-inch here.
Submitted by Cecil of Gobble Gobble
(Photo by: Landon Speers)
From the secret underground sun-drenched beaches located somewhere deep underneath Vancouver, comes a new track from Blood Diamonds. “Heart”, the track’s sound is a cherry picked batch of trademark components from across a phylum of electronic music known for its tendency to mesh melodic and percussive elements. Dub, Balearic, acid house, Illbient, and arguably several more sister/hybrid genres are well represented within the dense layers of this tranced out Tropicalia progeny. A Temptations vocal sample morphs from sing-song loop to electronic lead and back again. Rhythms come and go organically, supported by a drumline’s worth of heavily filtered percussion. An enticing track for fall that may have enough baked in heat to warm your ears as it pipes through your headphones.
Double single Feral Envelope / Aries is available via iTunes
Written by Luke Carrell