Music List | posted 01.12.2021
End-of-Year review 2021
Top 50 Albums
Much like every cloud has its silver lining, this year had some fantastic music to offer – something to hold on to in difficult times. These were the 50 best albums released on vinyl in 2021.
Text Kristoffer Cornils, Sebastian Hinz, Tim Caspar Boehme, Andreas Brüning, Lars Fleischmann, Benjamin Mächler, Christoph Benkeser, Fionn Birr, Björn Bischoff, Florian Aigner, Pippo Kuhzart, Stefan Mertlik, Martin Silbermann, Jens Pacholsky, Nils Schlechtriemen, Maximilian Fritz, Jana-Maria Mayer , Translation Sebastian Hinz
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Aboutface – °SVinyl LP AboutFace – °s (AD 93)
Nominally a 12inch but an album in length, “°s " sees Ben Kelly aka AboutFace transfer the structure of fractal patterns from nature into music, somehow using the Fibonacci sequence in the process. It is difficult to say exactly how all of this is reflected by the field recordings, poems, thoughts on the psychological consequences of the pandemic, rhythms and melodies can be heard here, but it surely makes for an exceptional album. Sebastian Hinz
 

Alina Kalancea - ImpedanceVinyl 2LP Alina Kalancea – Impedance (Important)
Alina Kalancea eschews ambient or drone conventions and with her Buchla modular synthesizers, builds stoic rhythms topped with pulsing, hissing, whirring sounds that will make your head spin. __Tim Caspar Boehme_
 

Angel Bat Dawid & Tha Brothahood - LiveVinyl LP Angel Bat Dawid & Tha Brothahood – Live (International Anthem)
Angel Bat Dawid is a gift to a world that is not always fair to her. »Live« was recorded at JazzFest Berlin in 2019, was also born out of a situation that filled Dawid and her band Tha Brothahood with rage about institutional bullshit and institutionalized racism. They let it out on stage. »Live« is a rare, because truly important album. __Kristoffer Cornils_
 

Annea Lockwood – Becoming Air / Into The Vanishing PointVinyl LP Annea Lockwood – Becoming Air / Into The Vanishing Point (Black Truffle)
»Becoming Air/Into the Vanishing Point« gathers two collaborations by Annea Lockwo that are nevertheless marked by her unique, idiosyncratic vision: delicate improvisations and harsh drones here, brooding chamber music set pieces and ominous field recordings there. Stunning. Kristoffer Cornils
 

Beatriz Ferreyra / Natasha Barrett – Souvenirs Cachés / InnermostVinyl LP Beatriz Ferreyra / Natasha Barrett – Souvenirs Cachés / Innermost (Persistence Of Sounds)
Argentinian composer Beatriz Ferreyra collaborated with Pierre Schaeffer in the early 1960s, exploring the possibilities of electroacoustic music. In addition to a recent composition, this split release also features a danceable electroacoustic piece from 2003. Natasha Barrett has been composing acousmatic and electroacoustic music since the 1990s. Her piece here works with field recordings of a public outdoor event in Norway. Andreas Brüning
 

Bendik Giske - CracksVinyl LP Bendik Giske – Cracks (Smalltown Supersound)
Norwegian saxophonist Bendik Giske uses his widely unpopular instrument in a way that recalls Colin Stetson while the end result feels like Brandt Brauer Frick confining themselves to only one instrument. Is he the true heir of Arve Henriksen, Jon Hassell perhaps? »Cracks« is only 34 minutes long but proof that Giske can be all those things at once. Sebastian Hinz
 

Bobby Would - World Wide WorldVinyl LP Bobby Would – Wordl Wide World (Low Company)
»World Wide World« would probably have named Best New Music and landed Bobby Would a contract with Sacred Bones one and a half decades earlier, but his lo-fi take on psych-folk, slacker wave music and understated rock music – does anyone here remember shitgaze? No? Good for you. – stands for its own today, as a musical anomaly,. Kristoffer Cornils
 

Bremer/McCoy – NattenBlack Vinyl LP | ● Coloured Vinyl LP Bremer/McCoy – Natten (Luaka Bop)
It can be most beautiful when the first impression lasts forever. The duo Bremer/McCoy’s impressionistic jazz-dub based on piano/Wurlitzer/tape delay and double bass has permanently found its way into our playlists and hearts this year. Lars Fleischmann
 

Claire Rousay - A Softer FocusVinyl LP Claire Rousay – A Softer Focus (American Dreams)
Claire Rousay is the overachiever in the world of ambient music precisely because nothing else made that much sense in this upside-down world we have found ourselves in these past two years. »A Softer Focus« is only of the many records she’s released this year and full of odd sounds and magical twists. Kristoffer Cornils
 

Cleo Sol - MotherVinyl LP Cleo Sol – Mother (Forever Living Originals)
Cleo Sol became a mother and took that as an opportunity to work on her second solo album. »Mother« sees the most beautiful voice in British soul team up with husband and colleague Inflo, responsible for jazzy production, for an album even more restrained and soulful than her debut. Benjamin Mächler
 


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Conny Frischauf – Die DriftVinyl LP Conny Frischauf – Die Drift (Bureau B)
Conny Frischauf writes songs for people who still feel something, or who at least want to feel anything again even after the third lockdown. »Die Drift«, the artist‘s debut record for Bureau B, is as free-floating as its title suggests. Christoph Benkeser
 

Dean Blunt - Black Metal 2Vinyl LP Dean Blunt – Black Metal 2 (Rough Trade)
»Black Metal 2«, the follow-up to Dean Blunt’s 2014 classic, seese the Londoner once again draw on chamber pop, trip-hop and indie music and contrast this crude mixture with a sleepy spoken-word flow about (for example) tricksters. It’s all very postmodern, very enigmatic, very … much. And maybe it is all a joke? Who cares. __Fionn Birr_
 

DJ Manny - Signals In My HeadVinyl LP DJ Manny – Signals In My Head (Planet µ)
Whether it was Jana Rush, RP Boo or DJ Manny: a slew of footwork producers offered new and exciting takes on the genre this year. On »Signals In My Head«, these were inspired mainly by R’n’B and even D’n’B, making the most abrasive footwork release in a footwork revival year incredibly catchy. Kristoffer Cornils
 

Don Zilla – Ekizikiza MubwengulaVinyl LP Don Zilla – Ekizikiza Mubwengula (Hakuna Kulala)
Don Zilla from Uganda mixes jungle beats, eerie industrial sounds, mutant trap and doom-step with traditional East African rhythms to create a special, complex, and unfriendly blend of music. It will call to mind acts like dBridge, Emptyset or Dreamcrusher, but »Ekizikiza Mubwengula« is truly a sui generis type of album. Andreas Brüning
 

Dry Cleaning - New Long LegBlack Vinyl LP | ● Yellow Vinyl LP Dry Cleaning – New Long (4AD)
Dry Cleaning from London made the post-punk album of the year. »New Long Leg« sounded as if Sonic Youth had decided to record a cover album with Joy Division tunes. Great music for long nights. Björn Bischoff
 

Eli Keszler - IconsBlack Vinyl LP | ● Clear Vinyl LP Eli Keszler – Icons (Lucky Me)
With »Icons«, the New York-based percussionist Eli Keszler* invites us on another esoteric sound journey. Who wouldn’t want to join in on it, though? Christoph Benkeser
 

Emeka Ogboh - Beyond The Yellow HazeVinyl LP Emeka Ogboh – Beyond The Yellow Haze (A-TON)
»Beyond the Yellow Haze« was actually already three years old when it was released again in this spring via the Ostgut Ton offshoot A-Ton, but it was a blessing nonetheless. Emeka Ogboh combined field recordings from Lagos with an open-ended interpretation of Berlin club music that made for a feverish, at times eerie and intricate album. Kristoffer Cornils
 

Floating Points, Pharoah Sanders & The London Symphony Orchestra - PromisesVinyl LP Floating Points, Pharoah Sanders & The London Symphony Orchestra – Promises (Luaka Bop)
The third best thing about this Floating Points record is that it doesn’t sound like a Floating Points record. The second best thing about this Floating Points record is that it doesn’t sound like a London Symphony Orchestra record. The best thing about the new Floating Points record is that it sounds like a classic Pharoah Sanders record throughout – restrained and introspective, devoid of ego and beautiful throughout. Florian Aigner
 

Guedra Guedra - Vexillology● ###HHV:800784 :Vinyl LP### Guedra Guedra – Vexillology (On The Corner)
Abdellah M Hassak released his »Vexillology« under the name Guedra Guedra through On The Corner Records from London this year. On it, the Moroccan lets the sounds and styles of the ancient past clash with an afrofuturistic understanding rhythm that catapults all of us into a better future. Christoph Benkeser
 

Haftbefehl – Das Schwarze AlbumVinyl 2LP Haftbefehl – Das Schwarze Album (Urban)
»Das Schwarze Album« by Haftbefehl is not the kind of album that you would call a piece of art, at not least not in the capital A sense oft hat word. But it must be considered the best German-language rap record in a long time. There’s everything you never knew you needed on this, and the best thing is that Haftbefehl did not need to change at all to make it happen. Björn Bischoff
 


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Jac Berrocal / David French / Vincent Epplay - Exterior LuxVinyl LP Jacques Berrocal, David Fenech & Vincent Eplay – Exterior Lux (Akuphone)
The sound Berrocal’s horn is one of the three most beautiful ones you can hear in this world. »Exterior Lux« is a very, very Lynchian album, and I very much welcome its appearance in my living room in times when life seemed stranger than fiction. Pippo Kuhzart
 

Japanese Breakfast – JubileeBlack Vinyl LP | ● Clear&Yellow Vinyl LP | ● Clear&Turquoise Vinyl LP Japanese Breakfast – Jubilee (Dead Oceans)
Michael Zauner’s opus magnum is a very ordinary album. »Jubilee« by her band Japanese Breakfast offers some standard indie rock tunes with touches of synth and funk that only subtly deviate from tried and tested formulas. But there’s all these lyrics you can live in; there’s those songs that after a while feel like a warm comforter after a cold day outdoors. This is an album, flawed like someone who becomes a good friend over time. Kristoffer Cornils
 

Jaubi – Nafs At PeaceVinyl LP Jaubi – Nafs At Peace (Astigmatic)
»Nafs At Peace« by Pakistani four-piece outfit Jaubi is a late contender for the album of the year award, a sprawling mix of hip-hop, northern Indian classical music and much, much more. Christoph Benkeser
 

Joy Orbison - Still Slipping Vol.1Vinyl LP Joy Orbison – Still Slipping Vol.1 (XL Recordings)
Joy Orbison still seems to distrust the album format, which is why he called his de facto debut album a mixtape. »Still Slipping Vol.1« is marked by stylistic diversity, sometimes even throwing poppy housy, various recordings of his family and even rap and vocal features into the mix. Florian Aigner

Karkhana - Al AzraqaynVinyl LP Karkhana – Al Azraqayn (Karlrecords)
»Al Azraqayn«, the new album by Karkhana, released via Karlrecords, features musicians from The Dwarfs Of East Agouza, Land Of Kush, Praed! Orchestra, Konstrukt, and … well, that’s all you need to know really, don’t you? ___Sebastian Hinz__
 

Kuunatic – Gate Of KlunaVinyl LP Kuunatic – Gate Of Kluna (Glitterbeat)
Kuunatic enrich their take on psych rock with no wave, folk, dub, and other ingredients from all over the world in order to give their music the alien dimension they are sprechgesanging about on this concept album. The result is one of this year’s strongest rock albums. Tim Caspar Boehme
 

Laila Sakini – Into The Traffic, Under The MoonlightVinyl LP Laila Sakini – Into The Traffic, Under The Moonlight (Not On Label)
Laila Sakini learned some Ableton tricks, called up some horn players, and made a record that sounded like Sakamoto spilled liquid Ecstasy into his porridge. »Into The Traffic, Under The Moonlight« is a literally stunning album through and through. Christoph Benkeser
 

Lana Del Rey – Chemtrails Over The Country ClubVinyl LP Lana del Rey – Chemtrails Over The Country Club (Urban)
Lana del Rey‘s seventh album, »Chemtrails Over The Country Club«, saw the U.S. artist doing everything as before, only more consistently. A late career highlight for sure, though certainly not the last. Björn Bischoff
 

Lea Bertucci - A Visible Length Of LightVinyl LP Lea Bertucci – A Visible Length Of Light (Cibachrome Editions)
Lea Bertucci took us on a journey through the Americas with »A Visible Length of Light«, creating a sort of travelogue out of field recordings intervowen with shimmering drones and a lot of flute sounds. When each day felt like the one before it, this album never stayed the same. Thanks for that. Kristoffer Cornils
 

Little Simz - Sometimes I Might Be IntrovertRed&Yellow Vinyl LP Little Simz – Sometimes I Might Be Introvert (Age101)
What is the difference between the real person and the fictional character they represent? Simbiatu Ajikawo and her alter ego Little Simz try to answer this question on »Sometimes I Might Be Introvert«: »Can’t believe it’s Simbi here that’s had you listening/Well, fuck that bitch for now, you didn’t know she had a twin.« These are painfully honest stories about fear, joy and anger presented with a broad range of musical means. Stefan Mertlik
 


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Loraine James - ReflectionVinyl LP Loraine James – Reflection (Hyperdub)
London producer Loraine James new album »Reflection« draws on genres like grime, but she shapes this material according to her own ideas. Deep bass sounds, high pitched vocals, hypernervous breaks – everything sounds familiar and yet very different on this record. Tim Caspar Boehme
 

Lucy Railton - 5 S-BahnVinyl LP Lucy Railton – 5 S-Bahn (Boomkat Editions)
April 2020, Berlin-Prenzlauer Berg: Lucy Railton only leaves her apartment when absolutely necessary, but is sitting on her balcony a lot. **»5 S-Bahn« combines field recordings of the trains passing by her house, her cello playing and the strange sensation that could be felt throughout the world during that time. It’s nice that this comforting release, previously only available on tape, is now also available on vinyl. Kristoffer Cornils
 

Marta Forsberg – TKAĆVinyl LP Marta Forsberg – TKAĆ (Thanatosis Produktion)
Marta Forsberg released her opus magnum (so far) last year, but »TKAĆ« picks up where »New Love Music« left off: both pieces were originally written for light installations and are imbued with a similar, strange feeling of weightlessness. Kristoffer Cornils
 

Maxine Funke – SeanceVinyl LP Maxine Funke – Seance (A Colourful Storm)
A Colourful Storm offers some of the best guitar music for people who can hardly stand guitar music. One of this year’s highlights was »Séance« by Maxine Funke. It’s a classic folk album and ansolutely indispensable. Pippo Kuhzart
 

 Mdou Moctar - Afrique Victime Vinyl LP | ● Purple Vinyl LP Mdou Moctar – Afrique Victime (Matador)
With their album »Afrique Victime«, Mdou Moctar from Niger accomplished something astonishing: Tuareg-Folk and other west african musical traditions merge with almost rock music in an organic fashion. We’ve found ourselves a new guitar god: Hendrix – Van Halen – Moctar! Martin Silbermann
 

Merope - Salos Vinyl LP Merope – Salos (~STROOM)
Dressing up folk songs of yesteryear in a new way is a popular, but also dicey task. For their fourth album »Salos«, Merope dug deep into the Lithuanian songbook and came out on the other end with ideas that were less New Age than New World. A modest, yet overwhelming effort, a thing of true beauty. Kristoffer Cornils
 

Motoko & Myers - ColocateVinyl LP Motoko & Myers – Colocate (Soda Gong)
»Colocate« by Motoko & Myers sounds Donky Kong island music for people who can’t afford to book an ayahuasca retreat – tropical, lysergic, out of this world. Christoph Benkeser
 

Nala Sinephro - Space 1.8Vinyl LP Nala Sinephro – Space 1.8 (Warp)
With her debut album, Nala Sinephro has earned the title »jazz album of the year« thanks to her undogmatic way of letting jazz tradition, electronics and drone coexist while merging. It’s a courageous record through and through. Tim Caspar Boehme
 

Natural Information Society with Evan Parker - Descension (Out of Our Constrictions)Vinyl 2LP Natural Information Society with Evan Parker – Descension (Out of Our Constrictions) (Aguirre)
Evan Parker teamed up with Joshua Abrams’s Natural Information Society for an album of minimalist ethnic jazz that has transformational powers. Tim Caspar Boehme
 

Pauline Anna Strom – Angel Tears In SunlightBlack Vinyl LP Pauline Anna Strom – Angel Tears In Sunlight (Rvng Intl)
Pauline Anna Strom passed away in December last year at the age of 74 and unfortunately did not live long enough to celebrate the release of her first album in 30 years. »Angel Tears In Sunlight« is a great ambient album even if you do not take this account, simply because it is thrilling all the way through. Pippo Kuhzart
 


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Richard Youngs - CXXIVinyl LP Richard Youngs – CXXI (Black Truffle)
For his 121st album »CXXI«, Richard Youngs sang a wordless blues over 121 minor chords. On paper, this may read like an unbearable record, and in reality it is –just in a literally awesome way. This is how bar jazz must sound in hell. Kristoffer Cornils
 

Rosaceae – DNAVinyl LP Rosaceae – DNA (Pudel Produkte)
On »DNA«, Rosaceae fuses political content with sometimes experimental, sometimes astonishingly straightforward music. Between banging tracks like »They Are So Afraid They Begin To Shake« and the captivating ambient sounds of »I’ll Be Back Soon«, a whole lot happens, and it leaves you wanting for more.Maximilian Fritz
 

Sarah Davachi – AntiphonalsBlack Vinyl LP | ● Silver Vinyl LP Sarah Davachi – Antiphonals (Late Music)
Sarah Davachi’s * album »Antiphonals« feels stripped back, minimalist and yet like a sacred rush of pure sound. This is not chamber music, but rather an all encompassing, impressive experience. This may well be the most enjoyable and listenable album in the realm of experimental music that has been released this year. Björn BIschoff
 

Scotch Rolex – TewariVinyl LP Scotch Rolex – Tewari (Nyege Nyege Tapes)
It’s been a long time since we’ve been hit in the face this hard. With »Tewari«, Scotch Rolex lets gqom meet dubstep, grindcore, industrial, trap and some illustrious soulmates from the Nyege Nyege posse, providing them with a chance to let out all their rage and justified frustration. Jens Pacholsky
 

Space Afrika - Honest LabourBlack Vinyl LP | ● Clear Vinyl LP Space Afrika – Honest Labour (Dias)
»Honest Labour« offers sample collages on canvas size, impressionistic ambient and spoken word passages that prove that Space Afrika can write entire movies with just a few selected sounds. Nils Schlechtriemen
 

Teresa Winter - Motto Of The WheelVinyl LP Teresa Winter – Motto Of The Wheel (Death Of Rave)
Teresa Winter‘s »Motto Of The Wheel« combines brazen drum’n’bass, pummeling techno, music for shut down airports, android and human voices, rave music without release, hyperintelligent dance music. It’s a record like a kaleidoscope, constantly in motion and forming new patterns. Sebastian Hinz
 

TibslcVinyl LP Tibslc – Delusive Tongue Shifts – Situation Based Compositions (Sferic)
With Tibslc’s »Delusive Tongue Shifts – Situation Based Compositions«, the Sferic label followed up sensational records by Space Afrika, Jake Muir and Romeo Poirier with their most gripping record to date. Florian Aigner
 

Tirzah – Colourgate EPBlack Vinyl LP | ● Transparent Sun Yellow Vinyl LP Tirzah – Colourgrade (Domino)
After her highly acclaimed debut »Devotion«, Tirzah became a mother of two and made an album informed by that experience. The rough-edged R’n’B of »Colourgrade« feels both mischievous anddaringly tender, like motherly love. Jana-Maria Mayer
 

Tomaga – Intimate ImmensityVinyl LP Tomaga – Intimate Immensity (Hands In th Dark)
»Intimate Immensity« will likely be the last Tomaga album, completed and released after death of founding member Tom Relleen. A more beautiful farewell as never written. Throughout ten steps, Relleen and Valentina Magaletti once again and one final time explore all the possibilities of repetition and difference until the record ends in deafening silence. RIP, Relleen. Kristoffer Cornils
 

wiki – half godVinyl LP Wiki – Half God (Wikiset)
Wiki’s »Half God« leans towards the minimalist loop infatuation of the Earl Sweatshirt generation, but also provides its audience with disarming psychoanalysis of the New York state of mind like we’ve last heard it someone put down on tape during the Golden Era. This is a special record even for boom-bap fans who think they’ve heard it all. Florian Aigner
 


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Music Interview | posted 12.05.2014
Jaakko Eino Kalevi
About Love And Other Mental Illnesses
Jaakko Eino Kalevi looks like a stoned angel in a woolie, works as a tram driver and with »No End« he released on of the best songs of 2013. About time we get to know him. A conversation about love, music and how to wash laundry.
Art Interview | posted 13.06.2013
Eliot Lee Hazel
The Stranger
Eliot Lee Hazel’s photographs of musicians are often gritty, raw, filled with cinematic language. British Hazel lives in America, is only 21 years-old and yet he’s already photographed Yeasayer, Thom Yorke, Ariel Pink and Cat Power.
Music Review | posted 25.05.2015
Glenn Astro
Throwback
Boom-bap is doing it with house, beatmaking with disco-soul. Nothing out of the ordinary, but it’s played out extraordinarily well.
Music Review | posted 03.04.2015
Sufjan Stevens
Carrie & Lowell
Sufjan Stevens’ »Carrie & Lowell« is an excellent example of improving something through radical reduction.
Music Review | posted 22.06.2012
Monophonics
In Your Brain
Records like this one happen when people blank out the last 30 years of music history and just carry on at the very time when funk turned into disco.
Music Interview | posted 04.11.2011
Akalepse of Truth & Soul
»It's all for love really«
Truth & Soul is home to artists like Lee Fields and The Expressions, El Michels Affair and Bronx River Parkway. Record collector and DJ Akalepse is as A&R a part of this creative circle. Valentin Menedetter met him for an interview.
Music Review | posted 15.05.2015
Oddisee
The Good Fight
With his lyrics, Oddisee refrains from all the rap-clichés. »The Good Fight« remains light-footed and catchy at all times.
Music Interview | posted 29.04.2013
Kendrick Lamar
Creating the Balance
Hailed as the savior of West Coast Hip Hop Kendrick Lamar’s »good kid m.A.A.d city’s« album success says something about the current state of Hip Hop. We talk to Lamar about the rap game then and now and the significance of Compton.
Music Interview | posted 28.02.2011
Virgo Four
Born Again
The two Chicago natives Eric Lewis and Merwyn Sanders are set to make Chicago House enthusiasts go apeshit again in 2011 with a huge collection of unreleased tracks, mostly recorded prior to their classic debut. Merwyn Sanders sat down with us to talk.
Music Review | posted 10.09.2011
John Beltran
Ambient Works 1995-2011
Even in the title of his anthology, John Beltran evokes a direct comparison to Aphex Twin.
Music Review | posted 20.11.2014
Andrea Belfi
Natura Morta
On »Natura Morta«, Andrea Belfi approaches the music as if he was a renaissance-artist painting a still life.
Music Essay | posted 13.03.2013
The Fine Line
»While you’re fucking some dusty old chair, I’ll be eating bananas «
»The Fine Line« takes one lyric to to discover a story, learn more about an artist, their song or music in general. Sometimes just one anecdote will be explored other times a whole unexpected worlds will be uncovered. It’s a fine line.
Music Review | posted 10.04.2015
Action Bronson
Mr. Wonderful
Action Bronson knows how to handle his superstar-status: »Mr. Wonderful« is an entertaining rollercoaster ride.
Music Review | posted 26.10.2011
Hypnotic Brass Ensemble
Bulletproof Brass EP
The Hypnotic Brass Ensemble of nine from Chicago is grooving again. This time, they’re heading towards space.
Music Review | posted 25.09.2014
NehruvianDOOM
Sound Of The Son
»Sound Of The Son« is the collab of New York’s grand master MF Doom together with the 18-years-old newcomer Bishop Nehru.
Music List | posted 15.10.2012
Rappers aged 25 and under
10 favourites - Special
A continuous wave of youngsters, mostly not legally allowed to even order a beer, are shaping the Hip Hop landscape. Here is a list of young rappers, whose unique style and attitude is determining the direction of Hip Hop today.
Music Review | posted 15.11.2011
Onra
Chinoiseries Pt. 2
Yet again, the French beat-maker has rummaged Vietnamese record-archives in order to produce another part of his Chinoiseries.
Music Interview | posted 17.11.2011
Joker
The Inner Vision
Like no other, Joker is bridging the gap between dubstep and hip hop with his so called »purple sound«. Finally, his long anticipated debut album The Vision came out these days. We met Joker to discuss dubstep, rap, video games and stolen TV’s.
Music Review | posted 04.02.2014
HELM
The Hollow Organ EP
As HELM, Luke Younger knows how to make the textures of his tracks to be thrilling – the balance between the crass sounds is just right.
Music Review | posted 08.05.2015
Hiatus Kaiyote
Choose Your Weapon
With »Choose Your Weapon«, Hiatues Kaiyote are firing polyrhythmic salvos across the previous decades of music history.
Music Essay | posted 10.12.2012
Australian Hip-Hop
Rise of the Down-Underground?
Since the Internet revolution made it possible for sub genres and scenes around the globe to connect and collaborate, more and more Australian rappers rise from the Down-Underground. Our author in Sydney took a look at the dynamic scene.
Music Review | posted 21.08.2011
Hudson Mohawke
Satin Panthers EP
With Satin Panthers, the 25-year-old Scotsman Hudson Mohawke seamlessly ties in with his debut Butter of 2009. Just Blaze is loving it.
Music Interview | posted 15.06.2011
Gonjasufi
Word, Sound, Power
Gonjasufi is one of the less originals in music biz and has his won history with music. So here he is talking with Valentin Menedetter about music, friendship and the letting-go.
Music Review | posted 09.05.2014
Kyoka
IS (Is Superpowered)
Kyoka’s easy going and airy-fairy proto-techno is a great contribution to the classic boys’-label Raster-Noton.
Music Review | posted 05.09.2014
Ital
Endgame
The house-anarchist Ital is refining his methods on »Endgame«, his third record on Planet µ.
Music Interview | posted 09.07.2011
Shigeto
A blessing in disguise
Early on it was already clear that the drums would be Zach Saginaw’s instrument. Shigeto now stands for his fragile sound which he pairs with his live drumming, creating clouds of sound, which are beautifully produced. Valentin Menedetter met him in Vienna.
Music Review | posted 09.05.2011
Atmosphere
The Family Sign
The Family Sign is almost a concept album, leaning towards blues, while only bearing little resemblance to Ant’s production-experiments…
Music Review | posted 10.03.2014
Neneh Cherry
Blank Project
For Neneh Cherry, »Blank Project« is much more than a simple comeback. It’s about soul, and she deserves our credit for it.
Music Review | posted 14.03.2013
Ghetto Brothers
Power Fuerza
First and foremost, the Ghetto Brothers were a Puerto Rican gang in the New York of the 1970s. At some point, they reached for their instruments.
Music Review | posted 18.04.2009
MF Doom
Operation: Doomsday
The super-villain enters the stage, equipped with a silver mask and a craving for revenge against the industry.
Music Review | posted 02.03.2012
Busdriver
Beaus $ Eros
Californian rapper and producer Busdriver keeps evolving into a singer and presents a sound that doesn’t have much to do with what you would call Hip Hop.
Music Review | posted 13.06.2011
Matana Roberts
Coin Coin Chapter One: Gens de Coloeur Libres
It’s its fiery, stirring and yet thoughtful force, which makes this album so very exceptional in these days.
Music Report | posted 06.02.2013
Kendrick Lamar
Live at C-Halle in Berlin on Feb 1
Friday was finally Berlin’s turn to host Kendrick Lamar. K.Dot. Mr. 2012. The fact that Lamar’s album just went gold and the fact that his concert was sold out still didn’t prepare one for the insanity that apparently is Lamar’s following.
Music Review | posted 12.02.2010
Whitefield Brothers
Earthology
»Earthology« has everything that’s needed in order to reach a similar status within in the next ten years as the Poets of Rhythm’s debut.
Music Review | posted 19.05.2015
Holly Herndon
Platform
As proven on »Platform«, Holly Herndon keeps successfully developing her musical concept by popping all the filter bubbles.
Music Review | posted 21.01.2013
Bernard Parmegiani
L'Œil écoute/ Dedans-Dehors
Two titles by the French composer Bernard Parmegiani have just been remastered and re-released on vinyl.
Music Review | posted 14.02.2011
Long Arm
The Branches
Beat-maker Long Arm from Russia has created an album almost impossible to beat in its homogeneity.
Music Review | posted 11.04.2013
The Doppelgangaz
HARK
On their new record »HARK«, The Doppelgangaz consistently follow their musical and lyrical direction.
Art Interview | posted 09.11.2012
Geordie Wood
Face to Face
The 27 year-old Boston-born, Brooklyn-based photographer Geordie Wood is a photographic traditionalist avoiding anything trendy or gimmicky yet his subjects are very much in your face and flashy.
Music Review | posted 14.03.2011
Charles Bradley & the Menahan Street Band
No Time For Dreaming
Charles Bradley is releasing his debut album at the age of 60.
Music Review | posted 28.11.2012
Ital
Dream On
With »Dream On« Ital comes forward with yet another good album. Still, the talented young man would be capable of something even bigger.
Music Portrait
Records Revisited
Daft Punk – Homework (1997)
In 1997, the French duo Daft Punk released their debut album »Homework« and since then have had an almost unprecedented career. At that time, the album was not yet mainstream, but creaky, crackling house music.
Music List
End-of-Year review 2021
Top 50 Albums
Much like every cloud has its silver lining, this year had some fantastic music to offer – something to hold on to in difficult times. These were the 50 best albums released on vinyl in 2021.
Music List
End-of-year review 2021
Top 20 12inches
12inches are mostly, but not always, made for the club. A look at the 20 best records in 2021 shows that in this year, not only was dance music rethought – but that also quiet counterpoints were set.
Music List
End-of-year review 2021
Top 50 Reissues
Another year goes by, another list of visions of futures that have yet to become reality is being published. These 50 records from the past dreamed the loudest of a better tomorrow.
Music List
End-of-year review 2021
Top 20 Compilations
Music, and even more so the people behind it, always find each other – even over distance if necessary, be it spatial or temporal. These were the 20 best compilations released on vinyl in 2021.
Music List
End-of-year review 2021
Top 20 Tapes
So now the mainstream has discovered music cassette, or at least how to make a quick buck with it: how do we feel about that? Well, we don’t really care, we’d rather put tapes from obscure labels and artists flying under the radar into our Walkman.
Music List
End-of-year Vinyl Review 2021
Top 20 Books
From the ultimate 2Pac oral history to a re-reading of Daft Punk’s legacy and the B-sides of music history, these books shaped a year whose first half gave us plenty of reading time.
Music Column
Records Revisited
Autechre – Chiastic Slide (1997)
With their fourth album as Autechre, the two Mancunians said goodbye to the reference set and began their singular journey into unheard sound and massive grooves.
Music Portrait
Dengue Dengue Dengue
Guest Mix
The Peruvian Dengue Dengue twirl hula-hoop ryhtms into the club. For us, they’ve exclusively put together this 60-minute mix, with music that will have you sharpening your arrow tips, licking green frogs, and taking the first prize at drumming class.
Music Portrait
Chillhop Music
The Magic of Passive Listening
Chillhop is music for a world where everyone listens, but no one pays attention. The Dutch label is nevertheless successful — and knows why.
Music Portrait
Faust
Why Don't You Eat Carrots?
Adventures kindly supported by the major label: the band Faust from Hamburg was one of those rare cases in the early seventies when a record company, if unknowingly, would support artists whose music sounded very different from the rock concepts hitherto known.
Music Column
Records Revisited
Stars Of The Lid – The Tired Sounds Of (2001)
The most monumental silence of all time: With »The Tired Sounds Of«, the two US musicians Brian McBride and Adam Wiltzie aka Stars Of The Lid created in 2001 one of the most important ambient albums of all time. With over two hours of sounds, drones and loops, they gave the genre a totally new depth.
Music Portrait
Holy Hive
Introspective lightness
With their debut album »Float Back To You«, the New York trio Holy Hive presented a folk-soul balm for the sore and bare nerves in 2020. On the self-titled follow-up Paul Spring, Homer Steinweiss and Joe Harrison continue on the chosen course, but sound even more intimate and personal.
Music List
Palmbomen II
10 All Time Favs
Pictures and sounds could never really be separated from each other with Palmbomen II. His new record, »Make A Film,« provides the music for the moving pictures that we all have yet to shoot. What music inspires him when composing film music, the Dutch producer has told us now.
Music Column
Records Revisited
A Tribe Called Quest – Low End Theory (1991)
It doesn’t get much better than that. At the beginning of the 1990s, A Tribe Called Quest brought the flow to the point with their second album »The Low End Theory«. Without aggressive male poses, but with jazz, breaks and vibe.
Music Column
Records Revisited
Primal Scream – Screamadelica (1991)
1991 – what a year for rock music. The albums by Nirvana, Soundgarden and Red Hot Chili Peppers released September 24, 1991 made rock become popular again. But »Screamadelica« by Primal Scream changed the whole genre.
Music Essay
The Beat Era in the GDR
Hostile takeover
Records from the Amiga label are widely available in Germany. In addition to pressings of international stars such as Michael Jackson, the Beatles or Bob Dylan, there was also a lot of music from the GDR itself that was released. Some of it is worth to be rediscovered.
Music Interview
José González
Taste Is Like Your Bum
In 2003, Jose Gonzalez covered the song “Heartbeat” by The Knife and instantly catapulted himself into the hearts and study rooms of so many. Now he has a new album, »Local Valley«, released. We had the opportunity to interview him.
Music Portrait
Loredana Bertè
Somehow Incomparable
Loredana Bertè is being lauded as the »Queen of Italian Rock.« This is not only musically inadequate, for Bertè never represented the status quo and instead repeatedly questioned it. She was and still is an outsider out of conviction.
Music Column
Records Revisited
DJ Shadow – Endtroducing (1996)
25 years ago, »Endtroducing« was released, a hip-hop album that brought Björk together with Metallica and Finnish fusion. DJ Shadow was digging in the cellar for it. And found gold. He covered what he found with a touch of melancholy and created an album that seems to have fallen out of time.
Music Portrait
Sarah Davachi
Echo of the infinity
Intensity is the word that comes to mind. In her music and in her movements. Sarah Davachi is an artist on the border between ambient, composition and drone. Her sound feels like someone stroking the soul with a fingertip. Now her new album »Antiphonals« is released.
Music Portrait
Dais Records
Sound as a collection
Between experiment and expectation, the contemporary and the past, Dais Records dares a delicate balancing act in aesthetics. Gibby Miller and Ryan Martin make waves where linearity experiences conscious disturbance – and follow the tracks of exceptional labels.
Music Portrait
Leslie Winer
The Unknown World Star
Björk, Grace Jones, Boy George and Sinéad O’Connor are among her admirers. William S. Burroughs was her mentor. Somehow, she also invented trip-hop. Yet Leslie Winer is known only to insiders today. That could change now.
Music Portrait
DJ Koco
Guest Mix
With DJ Koco, amazing mixing skills meet a selection of tremendous sophistication. Hardly anyone cuts his breakbeats tighter into each other than he does. The most amazing thing: The Japanese DJ limits himself to 7-inches in his sets.
Music Column
Records Revisited
John Coltrane – Africa/Brass (1961)
In 1961, »Africa/Brass" marked the dawn of a new age: for John Coltrane, it was the beginning of his Impulse! years, and for many African countries, the start of independence. Musically, it was probably his most ambitious effort.
Music Column
Records Revisited
Björk – Vespertine (2001)
Introverted standstill. Despite numerous positive reviews in August 2021 for the release of her fourth album “Vespertine”, Björk Guðmundsdóttir did not seem to fulfill the promise of her previous work with this record. Because this time she chose a completely different approach. Which makes »Vespertine« one of her best records to date.
Music List
Durand Jones & The Indications
10 All Time Favs
More than retro soul: Durand Jones & The Indications have been combining the past and future of the genre since their debut five years ago. Now their third album »Private Space« is released. Time to ask the band about the 10 records that have shaped, improved and educated them.
Music Portrait
Conrad Schnitzler
In the Midst of Disorder
Conrad Schnitzler, who died in 2011, is still perceived primarily for his connection to Kraftwerk or Tangerine Dream. Yet the impressive body of work that the »intermedia« artist left behind stands on its own.
Music Column
Records Revisited
Main Source – Breaking Atoms (1991)
In some ways, »Breaking Atoms,« Main Source’s full-length debut, seems to have remained a second-tier classic. But Large Professor’s production defined a signature sound for the Golden Age of Hip-Hop.
Music Column
Records Revisited
LFO – Frequencie (1991)
With »Frequencies«, the low frequency oscillators LFO from Leeds created one of the first techno albums. Their high bleeps and low clonks made history in techno music. To this day, it is an invitation, er, order to dance.
Music Column
Records Revisited
Funkadelic – Maggot Brain (1971)
With »Maggot Brain« Funkadelic 1971 goes to the dark side of funk. The triumphant pleasure principle is interspersed with dystopian eschatology, and juxtaposes the celebration of life with an oppressive doomsday mood.
Music Portrait
Hōzan Yamamoto
Meditation out of improvisation
For over five decades he pushed Japanese jazz towards spiritual spheres, without kitsch or esoteric – and just a little pathos. Above all, he garnered reputation for it back home. Even today Hōzan Yamamotos work is internationally considered an insider tip.
Music Portrait
Hoshina Anniversary
The Techno and jazz meltdown
Hoshina Anniversary makes techno. But he would rather see himself as a successor to jazz and traditional Japanese music. And the Tokyo native is not alone in this. In this sense, jazz is less what you play than how you play it.
Music Essay
Jazz kissas
Where the music plays in Japan
They offer classy retreat from a world where everyone listens all the time. And they celebrate listening to music: Jazz Kissas, Japan’s unofficial cultural heritage. Journalist Katsumasa Kusunose is now documenting it.
Music Portrait
Hiroshi Suzuki
The unknown with the trombone
In 1976, Japanese trombonist Hiroshi Suzuki recorded an album. “Cat,” which is characterized less by perfection than by a fine groove, was somewhat overlooked at one time. Now you can rediscover it.
Music Essay
Small In Japan
Japan, a Vinyl Nation? Not really.
Elaborate packaging, audiophile listening bars and the highest number of record shops in the world: Japan, a vinyl paradise? No. For decades, the medium has only played only a minor role there. A cultural history of Japan’s music industry.
Music List
Evidence
10 All Time Favs
Evidence is a producer, cratedigger and rapper, and one who in 15 years of career has never lost the desire to discover. Now his album »Unlearning Vol.1« is released. We asked about 10 vinyl records that have shaped, improved and educated him.
Music List
Record Store Day 2021 – 2nd Drop
12 releases to look out for
On July 17, 2021, the second Record Store Days this year will now take place. Again, several dozen exclusive releases have been announced. We have again picked twelve records that we want to recommend to you.
Music Column
Records Revisited
The Smiths – The Queen Is Dead (1986)
Released in 1986, »The Queen Is Dead« is the culmination of the British band The Smiths’ career, which lasted only five years and four studio albums. It still sounds refreshingly idiosyncratic even after so long.
Music Column
Records Revisited
Porter Ricks – Biokinetics (1996)
When Porter Ricks released the album »Biokinetics« in 1996, it was more than just a collection of their first 12inches flanked by two bonus tracks. It was a utopian attempt to expand upon the dub techno formulas.
Music Portrait
BBE Records
The influencer's influencer
Peter Adarkwah is the reason why some lives have been changed by J Dilla, why Roy Ayers experienced a second spring and why Japanese jazz albums are reviewed by Pitchfork. In other words: BBE Music turns 25 years this year.