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Mamiffer/ Locrian
Bless Them That Curse You

With six musicians in the mix, meeting in Chicago's Electrical Audio studios with renowned producer Greg Norman, and little in the way of plans, the half-dozen tracks on Bless Them That Curse You balance their mutual and distinct influences with natural grace. Some tracks push more towards the experimental ambient side, while others drive toward...view item »

SteXis / Jonnie Common
Split

Fence Records have sent us another of these split 10”s on their ‘De-Fence’ offshoot imprint. These have tended to have pretty illustrious artists doing something a bit different on them so it’s always interesting to give them a listen. This ti...view item »

Georgio 'The Dove' Valentino
The Sorrows of Young Georgio

Georgio 'The Dove' Valentino is back. People try to pigeonhole 'The Dove', they try to diss 'The Dove', but the 'The Dove' always bounces back. 'The Dove' always gets his way. Evidently not a happy bunny, 'The Dove' returns with a bleak work which disturbs. The first track sounds a bit like an I Like Trains who have moved to Lithuania and go...view item »

DJ Mistakes
DJ Mistakes

This is nuts. First of all the artwork of the copy I'm reviewing has a load of random crap thrown in - a circle of foil and one of coloured acetate...a computer printout with a single strand of tinsel sellotaped to it, that sort of thing. The sleeve itself is a total thing of beauty, too, screenprinted onto spar...view item »

Celer & Machinefabriek
Greetings From

Two drone geniuses get together and improvise their way through a bunch of live performances, then set their exemplary work down for Greetings From. Celer and Machinefabriek used their improvised, free form approach to playing together as a way of producing the strangest results poss...view item »

Philippe Petit
Eugenie

Dark lord of weirdness Philippe Petit’s got a new one again. I’m sure he only just did a new one but that’s how these outsider types work sometimes isn’t it? Anyway, on the first side of these ten inch...view item »

Fugenn & The White Elephants
Archetype Zero

I keep listening to this over and over again, not just because I like it but because I'm so easily distracted I'm considering going for ADD therapy. Then the Ethernet cable broke, this after I laughed and pointed at Phil struggling with a couple at work this week -karma you say? Thank the...view item »

Blanche Blanche Blanche
Papas Proof

I remember enjoying these guys’ last one on Night People so I’ve got high hopes for this one here. It opens with a crazy bit of multi-vocal counterpoint which is quite poppy but things soon get synthy as it turns i...view item »

MayMay
And So I Place You In The Setting Sun

This band MayMay are the brainchild of Laurel Simmons and Heather Broderick’s doing some cello on here and it was mastered by Nils Frahm so I think you get the idea - they’re part of “that lot”, stars with...view item »

Hand To Man Band
You Are Always On Our Minds

On this record multiple earth humans from famous bands make music which is a little more explorative and challenging than they can get away with in their primary projects. We’ve got Lord Mike of Watt on bass with a keys dude ...view item »

WANDA GROUP
Piss Fell Out Like Sunlight

Short review for our time on this earth being short so i have to be quick. This record moves everywhere. Some dark places and then a slight piece of light goes through the dark area and turns everything around but then back we are left alone. we fall out of the womb and sing a song. this piece of music (both sides) could be for all people that s...view item »

Kuroma
Four Songs for Fifty States

Kuroma are led by Hank Sullivant, ex-MGMT touring guitarist, and can often be seen on tour with the psychedelic pop group.  This EP, creatively titled Four Songs features, you guessed it, four songs which show off the raw, unpolished and yet strangely tight tracks from the band. Clear vinyl 10" on Bigger Splash Records...view item »

Sandro Perri
Spaced Out

Sandro Perri’s ‘Impossible Spaces’ was an absolute revelation, a stunning mix of Jeff Buckley-meets-Arthur Russell indie-soul and loungey jazz arrangements with a silky languorous feel which has since withstood many, many plays on the home stereo. On this 12” three of his tracks are give...view item »

The Gamecock
All Right, Hen?

Formed in 2010, Gamecock are a two piece comprised of Stuart Arnot (Smear Campaign/Total Vermin Tapes) and Nick Mitchell (Chalaque/Golden Lab Records). ‘All Right, Hen?’ is a reissue put out by Golden Lab because neither of them had a copy of either the original cassette release on Gary War’s Fixed Identity or the subsequent Be...view item »

Staple Singers
Swing Low

The Staple Sisters were an American gospel/ soul group who released a bunch of albums a long long time ago. I've never heard these folks before but listening to them I'm struck with a weirdly morbid feeling that these people are all dead now. Sad times..... This album was first released in 1962 and here's an identical replica from ...view item »

Amps For Christ / Woods
Amps For Christ / Woods

Shrimper! I remember you. The label that in the mid 90's brought you lo fidelity efforts from Lou Barlow, Mountain Goats, Refridgerator, is still going strong and busying itself marrying hot pro...view item »

Teenage Guitar
Force Fields At Home

More home-spun nonsense comes from Robert Pollard, who is frankly terrible at post-GBV retirement (which he has evoked twice now). Force Fields at Home sees his newest moniker Teenage Guitar spinning through jangle pop tunes similar to those of old, but without the same spr...view item »

Les Sins
Michael

I really enjoyed Chaz Bundick’s first two records as Toro Y Moi but he started to lose his way on ‘Anything in Return’ which didn’t reap the dividends expected from the leaps he made from ‘Causers of This’ to ‘Underneath the Pine’. Here he is though under a more dance influenced mo...view item »

Stewart Home
Proletarian Post-Modernism

Sometimes the only way to expose is to surpass. A spoken word LP might seem like a thing from the past, but in this case, it really is -- half. On the A-side, recordings from 2012 - on the b-side, a reading of Cunt Lickers Anonymous, a critique of modern art. This piece of artful spoken word is limited to 300 LPs....view item »

Quilt
Quilt

Here's another release on the ever prolific Mexican Summer label. A record which immediately is a reviewers dream as it's very quickly comparable to two bands we know and love at the towers, namely Warpaint and Vivian Girls. The music has the laid back West Coast vibe that pervades the fo...view item »

Pete Um
The New Album

There’s not many British eccentrics as wonderful and awe-inspiringly mad as our Pete Um. His scattershot irreverent prose, weirdo-raps and surrealist sound-sculptures are pretty distinctive, I feel, and have a place in the...view item »

Cocoanut Groove
How To Build A Maze

We have long been fans of Cocoanut Groove here at the towers so its to our utter delight that they have now signed to Fortuna Pop and dropped the big one so to speak. Its a good job their music is terrific as the photo’s of lead Groover Olov Antonsson could be enough to put you off on first glance. He’s now ditched the stripey jumper...view item »

Batillus
Concrete (Andy Stott Remix)

It's a new Andy Stott record so I was bound to listen to it and like it, but I was blown away by the sheer mood of this track. Unlike anything Stott has released previously the Concrete remix takes only the darkest elements from his production repertoire, which coupled with the shifted metal vocals of Batillus ma...view item »

El Fog
Rebuilding Vibes

I reckon analogue synths are probably my favourite musical sound but a close contender would be the mighty vibraphone. From Lionel Hampton to Tortoise/Mice Parade there are many fine examples of this instrument at work. El Fog a.k.a Berlin-based Japanese artist Masayoshi Fujita seems pretty keen on the instrument too as he's dedicated an entire pro...view item »

Kitchens Of Distinction
Folly

The arrival of the long awaited new album (about 20 years to be exact!) from Kitchens Of Distinction sparked a debate here at Norms over which was their best album, Chris and Phil say 'Love Is Hell' but I say definitely 'Death Of Cool'. After such a long absence though, this is a bit of an odd comeba...view item »

Higamos Hogamos
Spacerocks

Unashamedly synth-tastic instrumentals from Higamos Hogamos’ Steve Webster. What is interesting though is that there is unclear how much synth is actually present on Spacerocks… Apparently an improvised talk box is playing a major role? Either way, good and spacey. Four track picture disc on Hoga Nord....view item »


The Art of Remix

Nonclassical imposes its strict remix policy -- you can only remix with sounds that already exists in the track -- on a roster of famous electronic artists, from Hot Chip having a go at the music of Gabriel Prokofiev to Thom Yorke using his DJ skills to do things with 'Cortical Songs'. This record takes revered classical pieces and con...view item »

W//JT, SoS//NJ, MS//HT, SoS//NJ
BROS007

The Bros are back, and, while this might be a surprise to you, that is actually a good thing. These latest seasonal collaborations on the Brothers label include the finest of dub, techno, and grime, and perhaps a little house for good measure, for two times twelve inches of pure (listening! and dancing of course) pleasure....view item »

Itinerant Dubs
Itinerant Club (DJ Stingray / Mr G Remixes)

Itinerant Dub is a label somewhat shrouded in mystery, supposedly nobody knows exactly who is making their tracks… We can say, however, that the producers on remix duty here are DJ Stingray, who brings his twisted Detroit electro styles along to play, and Mr G, who takes a techno approach. Two great sound...view item »

Body Betrayal
Soft Cage

Queer punx Body Betrayal are about again with the hardcore classic: a one-sided 12”. Originally released back in 2014, ‘Soft Cage’ is a chaotic, slow-burning record offering what you would probably consider sprawls for this genre: two minute tunes belting out furious breakdowns and proper growled skramz, all brought back down t...view item »

The Morning Benders
Big Echo

The Morning Benders' Big Echo is both accessible and elusive. I love their old school 50's sound. Much of the songwriting is simple: beautifully and thoughtfully crafted melodies sung beautifully, seamless transitions, etc. Every song is extremely layered, offering the listener a chance to discover something new even after multiple listenings. U...view item »

Metasplice
Metasplice

You know that artists go abstract when they release an octet of untitled tracks. Metasplice however are keeping it real, not resorting to an album named after punctuation and instead opting for a self-titled affair - this is who we are, this is our sound. But it sure is abstract, featuring varied digital jams that both glisten and haunt at once ...view item »

Monoceros
Tales From Late Night Remixes

I've used my my powers of deduction and search engining to come to the conclusion that Tales From Late Night Remixes is a remix album based on Monoceros's Tales For Silent Nights remixes CD which came out a year or so back. I've never heard that so I'm fully equipped to offer scintillating and insightful comparisons with the originals. Here we go.....view item »

The Faces of Drums
Thanks 4 The Tracks U Lost Vol. 2

Fresh from the dusty attics of Steve Pointdexter and Jamal Moss, aka FACE OF DRUMS: some prime 20 year old vintage raw Chicago techno cuts. Thanks 4 the Tracks U Lost Vol. 2, just like its predecessor, is a really tasteful time capsule, with three tracks saved from old cassette tapes. N...view item »

Warmer Milks
Let Your Friends In

I almost jumped out of my skin when I hit play on 'Let Your Friends In' by Warmer Milks. Immediately I assume this is gonna be a noise album but that's not the case. A few minutes into the first tune and the band enter heavy rock terrain with fairly lo-fi production values and black metal vox. Not the cacophony of blistering chaos implied by the op...view item »

The Vichy Government
Coventry

It's too early in the morning for this. A chirpy James Nesbitt/Gary Lightbody type perky Northern Irishman twittering on and on over some casio keyboard twinkles sounding something somewhere between 'Kissing with Confidence' by Will Powers, Jad Fair and John Shuttleworth. Safe to say thou...view item »

The View
Bread and Circuses

After kicking the indie brit rock scene in the butt with 2006's Hat's off to the Buskers, The View went in a bit of a different direction (a much more unsuccessful direction) with their 2nd album Which Bitch? in 2009. Thankfully, they're a bit more grounded with their 3'rd record. Even on the first spin, I really couldn't identify a bad song on ...view item »

Twiggy And The K*Mesons
We Are The Boredom

Twiggy And The K*Mesons- We Are The Boredom CD (Warm Circuit)Q. What is this then?A. A 2 track CD single you lemonQ. Crazy name for a band right?A. Yes but don't ask me what it means cos I don't know. Just cos I'm here answering questions doesn't mean I know everything. I'm not some sort of fucking guru man. Get a grip...view item »

The Troubadours
(I'M NOT) Superstitious / Rome

The Troubadours had single of the week a while back with their cracking debut. Here's their new single '(I'M NOT) Superstitious' on hip happening Loog label and I have to say it's another great pop smash. Very merseybeat and I have to say I'm reminded a little of the pop sensation that was Cast. 'I'm Not Superstitious' is on limited edition 7"...view item »

Telekinesis
12 Desperate Straight Lines

Michael Benjamin Lerner is a one man band otherwise know as Telekenesis. I really enjoyed the self-titled mid-fi debut from Telekinesis, particularly the single "Coast Of Carolina". "12 Desperate Straight Lines" is the follow-up. It has higher production values making the songs a bit punchier, and probably sound more like other bands such as The...view item »

Surrounded
Oppenheimer and Woodstock

This album isn't easy to get into, you have to give it your time to be rewarded. It contains a lot of undercurrent darkness about society and humanity of today, but I have to say I get uplifted by it, perhaps a paradox. The arrangements are first class and bands like Keane and Coldplay should take a look at this to make better substantial record...view item »

Super Adventure Club
Avoid Zombies

Rocking a classic power trio line-up and hailing from Glasgow, Super Adventure Club serve up a mixed bag of takes on classic stylistic approaches. Over eight songs they cover classic indie pop, rock, swing and jazz infusing each with enough quirky good times to keep even the most restless listener happy. Sighting Devo, Soul Coughi...view item »

Sukpatch
23

Moshi Moshi have put out Sukpatch's album following on from the single the other week which pretty much gives you an idea of what to expect from the album. Mid-tempo guitar pop with nods to Money Mark with some of the beats and synth bits. Infact the vocal is not unlike him either. Hip-Hop laced in...view item »

Sumsun
Samo Milagro

Samsun is the nom-de-plume of a Floridian guy called Justin who has constructed a wildly spangled & kaleidoscopic disco odyssey here. 'Samo Milagro' does indeed share parallels with both Four Tet's dreamier elements & the more ambient & cosmic side of this much-loved woozy chill-wave shit. Mount Kimbie have been mentioned amongst the...view item »

Snow White
EP

New single from Snow White which has been compared to My Bloody Valentine and Dinosaur Jr. Yeah I suppose you could compare it to 'Feed Me with your Kiss' as performed by The Stooges. The previous sentence makes this sound great but actually it's not. It's just immediately obvious what they've been listening to. It d...view item »

SixToes
Trick of The Night

This Sixtoes CD on Toe Music is lovely. It's called Trick of The Night and it's a CD only affair. Immediately you'll be struck in the face with a high pitched warbly voice you'll either love or hate. It's one of those voices which will either make or break the CD for you. Unusually for me (as I pretty much hate the human voice and everyone who has ...view item »

Signalform + Tachikoma
Understanding Media

We got a bunch of stuff in on Love The Chaos. Currently playing is Signalform + Tachikoma's 'Understanding Media' CD. This is a competent blend of digital beats, glitches and drifting melodies. This is similar to the Merck / Machine Drum / Schematic/ Push Button Objects school of abstract electronics and stuttering beats with hints of early Skam an...view item »

Jonas Reinhardt
Powers of Audition

Kranky is another label with barely a mis-step to its name. Here is the second album by Jonas Reinhardt which has a synthetic, synthesized feel recalling those late 70's/early 80's behemoths of synth rock Jean Michel Jarre and Vangelis. The likes of Trans Am have veered into this territory on occasion in later years but I'm really not sure about it...view item »

RadioSeed
There Has To Be More

I seem to have brought the Swedes home tonight. Philthy said this is "shoegazey" so thought I might like it because I'm miserable & stare at my shoes all the time. Well, it's the only fucking part of me that can see easily at all times and isn't my arms (which i'm quite frankly sick & tired of). I'm not being funny but this album sounds ...view item »

The Rain Band
Knee Deep & Down

The Rain Band (who gave me this?). Its a new single. Its dark swirling heavy overcoated guitar rock somewhere between Mansun, The Chameleons and something altogether more scary like the Sisters of Mercy. Knee Deep & Down is released on 7", 12" and CD ...view item »

Puffinboy
Make Motion Matter

Another quiet talent, Puffin Boy, have a mini album jobbie out on CD. 'Make Motion Matter' sounds like the B-52's being taken hostage by the cast of 'Are You Being Served' at first. It gets into a locked groove of funky noodles & digital chatter further along, percussive but a bit directionless to be honest. Then they go trip...view item »

The Notorious Hi-Fi Killers
Behind the Smoke and Mirrors

Mid-tempo psych rock from these suave Lahndoners. They have a shoegaze slant that I find interesting. They have a well produced sound. It is a psych rock record without the wailing walls of guitar and tin can percussion. I guess it reminds me of something like Wolf People but with less rock. It defiantly comes from the same ball park. This CD is...view item »

Nonotes
Mode

Nonotes then. This is a CD called Mode on a label called Motok Records. Nothing here I'm familiar with at all. Musically though I am familiar with the contents of this. Keyboard drones and tones which remind me of some of the more minimal Raster Noton gear. Mingus has piped up Elaine Radique and said it's like a colder version of Ron Geesin.... tr...view item »

Millions
Millions

What is left to say about the deluge of albums that comprise of synthesizer drones ebbing and flowing, drifting hither and thither? It's a struggle and that's why The Wire spend their time overintellectualising what is basically the sound of a man playing one note on an organ for 40 minut...view item »

MFH
1979-85

In 1979 MFH were formed, in the words of the liner notes, “by Andrew Cox (Maths) and David Elliott (Geography) at Sussex University in November 1979”, they were a couple of dweebs who couldn’t really play their instruments and instead dived headlong into the cassette culture ...view item »

Roel Meelkop
Oude Koeien

Meat. Love it or hate it there's no ignoring it. Not a fan myself. Possibly something to do with strict vegetarianism but even if meat wasn't made of animals I'm not sure I'd like it. In glorious technicolour on the front cover of this new album by Roel Meelkop is a big slab of meat. The CD is called 'Oude Koeien' and musically it seems to be ...view item »

Melodium
Coloribus

Bit of a quiet legend is this guy, Laurent Girard. He's been making sublime melodic electronica & sound-art with an organic edge for years, releases for electronische labels colossuses such as Static Caravan, Bad Boy Budgie and My Dad is an Antelope amongst others. The last two may be made up. Flicking through there's plenty of rich sonic de...view item »

The Marigold
Erotomania

We can't find much out about The Marigold here so the music's got to do the talking for them (as it should be really), judging by their names I'm assuming they're Italian though. Their sound brings to mind everything from grunge to early Sebadoh to a less intense Isis, most of the tracks are all-out rockers but there's the odd little experimental i...view item »

Leaving the Fold
Contort

LEAVING THE FOLD (I'm convinced they used to be just The Fold!!!) have a pretty darn cool single on Marquis Cha Cha too. It's nowt particularly new (like, so whaaat?) but if I were 18 again I'd be well into the melodic post hardcore of 'Contort for the Two of Them' with its dense walls of dive-bombing guitars stabbed up by...view item »

Mucky Sailor
Early Lad

Leeds lads Mucky Sailor release their debut long player 'Early Lad', it's a crazy mix of prog synths and math rhythms, rumour has it that they're pretty bonkers live and it really shows on record too, 'Tranzpennine Express' is like Jethro Tull being stage invaded by ...view item »

iLiKETRAiNS
Sea Of Regrets

I Like Trains are leeds very own bleak pop pioneers. New single 'Sea of Regrets' is a song inspired by the environmental musings of natural scientists James Lovelock and George Monbiot and seems to touch on themes of a doomed human race. It's the first single from thier new self produced/released LP expected later this year. It's a thoughtful track...view item »

Hunter Complex
Hunter Complex

Now if you're interested in some quality synth pop then look no further... This is the nom de plume of Lars Maier who has also recorded as Larz and also with Psychon and Living Ornaments who had a track on the old Skam Cats CD. I gotta hand it to him, he does a stellar job on the synthesizers, obviously referencing many 80's influences but still...view item »

The Hot Puppies
Under The Crooked Moon

The Hot Puppies. Sounds like a perverted sexual metaphor. As it happens they sound like one of these modern "Sleeperbands", ie, totally competent at providing you with impassioned girl fronted indie anthems yet can you remember who the hell they are when you boogie on down at yr local disco? 'Green Eyeliner' is the h...view item »

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