Friday, April 30, 2021

Storm 3000


Not one of the artists I liked or followed - associate them with the Muzik Middlebrow Strand

And yet this is a tuff little beaut of a tune that I really liked on their debut album.

Probably the first time I heard the low-pass filter - love the way it sculpts the riff into a bloc of sound that seems to tilt and shift within space 

Then the nice, gently boombastic breaks - flashback to breakbeat house, or sideways to Big Beat maybe, but I'd rather think of Congress et al.

And then the funny little synth-melody that now for all the world reminds me of Belbury Poly

These are the tunes Leftfield are renowned for though


They're all right.  

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

hoo noo fly bi had da vid yo


this is the really fun megamix version, with a medley of UKG classics from many phases underneath

but i prefer the other version that is just an original boombastic barebones track underneath

this version is banging but orrible 

Sunday, April 25, 2021

P.R.E.M. versus the C-word

Dale Cornish, not content with inventing the genre of "thug ambient", has coined another nifty name. In a recent tweet he announced: 

"Yesterday, in an interview for A Thing, I invented the term Press Release Experimental Music, whereby the promo blurb is 374 times more interesting than the bland music it's hyping up. "recorded in a cave in Belarus using rare AKG microphones" = sounds bloody boring though m8888"

Now, I know what you're thinking. 

You're thinking, "Dale, mate - it's been named. It's called Conceptronica."

And I admit, that was the first thing that popped into my head. 

But upon consideration, I decided they're not the same thing. 

They overlap, but Press Release Experimental Music is a purely pejorative term.

Whereas Conceptronica is actually value-neutral (no, honestly it is -  many assume it's a brickbat,  others a big-up, but it's neither). 

Under the umbrella of Conceptronica, you would indeed find a swathe of stuff where the press release was way better than the actual music.

But you would also find a swathe of stuff where the press release and the music were just as good as each other and mutually enhancing. 

And you would find yet another swathe of stuff where the press release was turgid and pretentious such that the music would be much better off without that framing - and in that sense is 347 times better than said press release.

And - we're not done yet - there is another subcategory (and in truth this probably was something the C-word had in its sights, as a target) and that is the swathe of stuff where the press release (interesting in its own right) and the music (also interesting, "stands up by itself") are both fine and dandy, but there doesn't seem to be any actual relationship between the themes, critiques etc asserted in the framing bumf and the actual sonic events that comprise the work. 


Apropos of this, recently I came across a bit of Mark Fisher writing that prefigures the conceptualization of conceptronica, although not actually being about music, per se. 

"What's interesting - and this has a direct bearing on some of the disputes about abstraction and the [hardcore continuum]to which I will return in a post that's been germinating ever since the UEL event - is the way in which Burial's music conducted affects and images so powerfully, so lucidly, without the mediation of the (facialised, biographical) individual or its self-understandings. (How different is Burial's abstract art - so painterly, so precise in the images it produced - to so much of what appears in galleries, with its overthought, overconscious, nulanguage meta-rationales, while 'the work' induces no ideas, no affects, at all.)"

K-punk here is slagging off art-art, not art-tekno -  visual art, gallery art. 

I am curious what Mark would have thought of the Conceptronica phenomenon - he seemed both amenable to That Kind of Thing (e.g. wrote about Ultra-Red I seem to recall, Mille Plateaux agit-proptronica) but on the other would have been reflexively suspicious of the self-curatorial turn in modern music I'd have thought (given his swipes at e.g. S. Youth etc). 

Recently also realized that the seed of conceptronica, which I've used on and off as a term since 2006,  can be traced right back to Energy Flash and the chapter called "Fuck Dance, Let's Art", in whose opening section the idea of the museum as space of non-vibe is aspersed: 

By the end of 1995, a new zone of music-making had emerged out of the ruins of ‘electronic listening music’: a sort of post-rave omni-genre wherein techno’s purity was ‘contaminated’ by an influx of ideas from jungle, trip hop, all over. Not particularly danceable, yet too restlessly rhythmic and texturally startling to be ambient chill-out, this music might be dubbed art-tekno, since the only appropriate listener response is a sort of fascinated contemplation. Imagine a museum dedicated not to the past but the future, where you marvel at the bizarre audio-sculptures, let your ears wander through the sound-installations, and boggle at the noise contraptions as they go about their pointless, captivating tasks.

One of the earliest events dedicated to this new omni-genre, the Electronic Lounge, was actually situated in the bar at an art gallery, London’s ICA....

But here it's cast as art-for-art's sake experimentation, music without social energy behind it or a social function... whereas conceptronica is very much purposed with a polemical or even didactic point, is in some cases an activist attempt to reconnect experimental music and Society. 

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

misleading monikers (1 of ??)


Putrid name, Dubtronix innit? Makes you expect something that could be on Guerrilla Records, or  a digidub crew, or perhaps some awful American brostep-meets-jamband type euuch. 

But that tune is tuff, ruff,  yet glossy 'n' slinky pure junglizm. Excellent stuff.

His/ their discography is well worth a delve 

This New Age EP particularly tasty

Sunday, April 11, 2021

gabber literature


!An exciting addition to the small body of gabber literature! 

Sbrang Gabba Gang: Gabber Reconstruction of the Universe, by Riccardo Balli

By an Italian but in English, written in a style that resembles the LOUD energy of a S.Wells sluiced through the unforgiving yet gleeful anti-humanism of a Biba Kopf, this monograph maps Italian Futurism onto gabba, and vice versa. So it's an intellectual entertainment - penned by one who knows viscerally whereof he speaks... who's sweated and stomped in the four-to-floor forge 'till the crack of dawn, and beyond...  been battered by drop-hammer bassdrum and blasted by hoover-noise...  soaked up the sensations and survived to make sense of the senselessness. 


You can get the book here or here or here 

Check out the praxis (deejaying, producing, running a label) to the theory at Balli's Bologna-based operation 

Some of Balli's previous publications

Funnily enough, me and Paul Oldfield used to have a deejay "company" called Apocalypso Disco, or perhaps it was just Apocalypso - at any rate, we had the flyers and we did get a few college gigs. 

Thursday, April 8, 2021

drill & brains

 It had to happen, it was inevitable, it's even been awaited - behold, the IDM-ification of UK drill

"ambient drill" even!

of course the funny thing is that drill already is ambient, already contains ambient elements within it, is listened to (I suspect, anyway) in an ambiently inattentive way

Sunday, April 4, 2021



by the same dude who did these Ecstasy safety leaflets