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Albums of the Year 2017

It’s that time again.

Top Albums Top Reissues Bestsellers Top Stiffers Near Misses

Top Stiffers

That's the name we give to the hundreds of excellent records we get in each year that you ignore. The pick of the bunch is presented below for you to ignore again.

Gondwana
Miccaotli


  • Vinyl 12" (OPAL099)
  • In stock and ready to ship

Jimi Bazzouka
Edits Vol. 4

More weird house edits and sly disco variations from Jimi Bazzouka and the Crowdspacer label. Edits Vol. 4 on vinyl 12” borrows the sounds of the 1980s Japanese new wave and turns them into surreal bangers and eccentric floorfillers, all dedicated to the life and work of genius Ryuichi Sakamoto.
  • Vinyl 12" (CRWDSPCRX005)
  • £7.99 £5.99 (saving: £2.00)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Limited edition

Simbiosi
Indastria EP


  • Vinyl 12" (CR05)
  • £8.99 £6.74 (saving: £2.25)
  • In stock and ready to ship

Sciahri
Quiet Witness


  • Vinyl 12" (BOP013)
  • In stock and ready to ship

Al Chem
Weird Fiction

First full-length album from Al Chem, whose take on dub music is filtered through many layers of hazy electronics to become something else. Weird Fiction feels woozy and pressurised, like the mix could seep apart at any moment, a vibe that makes for enticing listening. Deep atmosphere stuff, released by Art Yard.
  • Vinyl LP (ARTYARDLP2017)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Limited edition

Idiota Civilizzato
La Vita Silenziosa

International (but Berlin-based) hardcore group Idiota Civilizzato begin their journey with La Vita Silenziosa, a powerful debut EP. Seven tracks are packed into these seven inches of vinyl, thrusting a high-velocity, Italian-language blast of ferocious frustration into the listener’s ears. Out on the essential Static Shock label.
  • Vinyl 7" (SSR044)
  • £6.49 £4.87 (saving: £1.62)
  • In stock and ready to ship

Nomadico
Gentefication EP

Dan Caballero is part of the Underground Resistance family, mixing their tracks as well as working with Los Hermanos, Orlando Voorn, and DJ 3000. His second release on his own Yaxteq label under his Nomadico moniker. Gentefication is an ode to street culture rising up against developers through fiery high tech techno and acidic basslines.
  • Vinyl 12" (YAXTEQ002)
  • £10.99 £6.59 (saving: £4.40)
  • In stock and ready to ship

Ekman
Sturm Und Drang / First Mover


  • Vinyl 12" (SHIP051)
  • £10.99 £8.24 (saving: £2.75)
  • In stock and ready to ship

Night Foundation
Memory Bells


  • Vinyl 12" (LSS002)
  • £12.99 £9.74 (saving: £3.25)
  • In stock and ready to ship

Young Fathers
Tape One / Tape Two

Essential re-issue of the early years of eventual Mercury Prize winners Young Fathers. 'Tape 1' and 'Tape 2' saw the band honing their near unclassifiable sound which blends hip-hop with influences from indie, jazz and soul. 'Tape 1' in particular is totally magnificent  - a call to arms that ensured that we were in the presence of something really special. 
  • Vinyl Double LP (BD27778)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Last copy
  • CD (BDCD27778)
  • Tape (BDCAS27778)

Andrea Belfi
Alveare

Andrea Belfi’s latest suite of electroacoustic percussion music is based around, a post-war Italian architecture movement with utopian ideals. In other words, a perfect jumping-off point for semi-abstract music such as this. Alveare features guest contributions from Audrey Chen and Attila Faravelli, and was mastered by the talented ears of Giuseppe Ielasi.
  • Vinyl LP (IIKKI 002)
  • £17.99 £13.49 (saving: £4.50)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Last copy

Don't DJ
Hyperspace Is The Place / Hyperspace Is No Place

Hyperspace is The Place / Hyperspace is No Place is the latest mini-album from Don’t DJ. A collection of ambient sounds and experimental electronica make this mini-release a great listen. As with a lot of Don’t DJ’s work, the tracks build slowly into a rhythmic trance of soft beats and soothing melodies. Available on Vinyl LP.
  • Vinyl LP (EM1161TEP)
  • £13.99 £10.49 (saving: £3.50)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Last copy

Altstadt Echo
Reposed In Nihilism


  • Vinyl 12" (TEETH-5)
  • £9.99 £7.49 (saving: £2.50)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Last copy

Assel
This Will Not Stand

Falling somewhere between Blackest Ever Black territory, Demdike Stare sampling pastiches, sound art, Black Dice experimentalism and multiple genre referencing. Assel makes his debut on the Where To Now? Label with This Will Not Stand, casting any allegiances to the side, morphing recognisable elements into something completely unknown.
  • Vinyl 12" (WTN58)
  • £9.99 £5.99 (saving: £4.00)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Last copy

High Boys
Dead Zones


  • Vinyl 12" (iDEAL147)
  • £9.99 £5.99 (saving: £4.00)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Limited edition
  • Last copy

Porter Ray
Watercolor

If Porter Ray's debut single is anything to go by, then his full length - Watercolor - is to be highly anticipated. Sacred Geometry is a promising and deep electronic expedition, layered amongst a reel of candid lyrics - keep an eye out for this burgeoning Seattle-based innovator.
  • Vinyl Double LP (SP1188X)
  • Limited edition
  • Indies-only
  • Vinyl Double LP (SP1188)
  • CD (SPCD1188)

Les Marquises
A Night Full Of Collapses

Les Marquises is Jean-Sébastien Nouveau’s grand ensemble project, featuring artists like Matt Elliott of The Third Eye Foundation and Agathe Max among many others. A Night Full Of Collapses makes great use of this line-up, sprinkling rich and varied instrumentation throughout its noirish chamber pop. Released by Ici d’ailleurs.

Scuba Death
The Worm At The Core

The name Scuba Death sounds like it belongs to some psych-rock group, but actually the name refers to a nearly-fatal experience that Brazilian composer Ricardo Donoso had while scuba diving. The brush with doom pushed him to express himself creatively: The Worm At The Core, an album centred around thunderstorm field recordings, is the latest chapter of the project. On Further Records.
  • Vinyl LP (FUR114)
  • Limited edition

Kalbells
Ten Flowers

Kalbells is Kalmia Traver of Rubblebucket, working solo for the first time. Ten Flowers is a kaleidoscopic suite of playful and colourful electronics, dotted with percussions and field recordings and, of course, Kalmia’s voice, which weaves itself all around and about. Released by NNA Tapes, although it isn’t available on tape: only CD and LP editions!
  • Vinyl LP (NNA101LP)

Moiré
No Future

With his releases on R&S, Ninja Tune, and Werk Discs London based producer Moiré has always pushed left of centre in techno production, swapping straight fours for screwed and off kilter beats that mysteriously achieve the same rhythm. On his latest full length through Ghostly International he pushes further into IDM beat work territories, working with MC DRS and “grime poet” James Massiah.
  • CD (GI280CD)

METZ
Strange Peace

A new record from probably North America's loudest band promises to be ear-shredding, particularly when recording genius/grump Steve Albini has allowed them into his lair. This live-to-tape recording tries to grasp the full racket of the band in the flesh, resulting in an accessible yet terrifying ride. 
  • Vinyl LP (SP1199X)
  • Coloured vinyl
  • Limited edition
  • Indies-only
  • Vinyl LP (SP1199)
  • CD (SPCD1199)

Fink
Resurgam

The long-awaited release from Fink comes in the form of Resurgam. UK born but Berlin based band Fink give a much more mature and relaxed sound to this record, that must surely take some influence from the likes of Newton Faulkner and even Radiohead. This record is available on Double LP and CD and released on 'R'COUP'D'.
  • Vinyl Double LP (RCPD015)
  • CD (RCPDCD015)

Jaye Bartell
In A Time Of Trouble, A Wild Exultation

A mature-feeling selection from Jaye Bartell. Third album In A Time Of Trouble, A Wild Exaltation was recorded in live sessions in Bartell’s home town, with pleasant details like chimes in an open window adding to the crystal-clear band recordings. Features Ahleuchatistas and Angel Olsen on guest spots. Out on Sinderlyn.
  • Vinyl LP (LYN33LP)
  • CD (LYN33CD)

Kassem Mosse / Black Point
Split Vol. 2

One track each from Kassem Mosse and Black Point on this straightforwardly-presented 12” on the Out To Lunch label. Both producers are in a relaxed mood, laying out some really lovely grooves. Unhurried synth lines weave their way around languid basslines and fine-funky beats: Split Vol. 2 really does contain quality material.

Horsebeach
Beauty & Sadness

Oh lovely Horsebeach. I hope we didn't fall out too badly in that we maybe didn't give their last album quite the plaudits of their first one. Listening to this lovely new record make me feel even worse about that. The band superbly marry the melancholic rain drenched sound of the Smiths with the jangling beauty of Real Estate.  Here they've introduced some synths too adding to the feel of early 80s dreamers China Crisis and the Lotus Eaters.  
  • CD (AT6CD)

外神田Deepspace
Welcome To Nakanotroit

Japanese producer 外神田Deepspace (外神田 translates to Kotokuda, a district of Tokyo) operates a double output, simultaneously working as Aquarium. 外神田Deepspace is his “boy side” focusing on metallic and mechanical sounds, although Welcome To Nakanotroit is as playful as it’s name suggest, with Detroit techno influences, squelches ethereal paddy chords and mutating electronic bleeps.

Joey Agresta
Let's Not Talk About Music

Joey Agresta is a veteran of doing it his own way, with a stack of AKAs behind him: Son Of Salami, Joey Pizza Slice etc. Let’s Not Talk About Music, which includes upbeat songs like ‘I Feel Like Shit And I Want To Die’, was recorded in Joey’s bedroom studio over a period of three years, using tape machines all the way baby. Let’s Not Talk About Music is out on Wharf Cat Records.
  • Vinyl LP (WCR063LP)
  • £16.99 £10.19 (saving: £6.80)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Last copy
  • CD (WCR063CD)

Trevor De Brauw
Uptown

Trevor De Brauw is the guitarist of Pelican, and this is his first solo release. Although don’t assume that he’s only just had the idea: Uptown has been slowly created over the course of the last ten years. Uptown pushes away from songs and riffs and into dense drone-ambient territory, where it turns out Trevor is a master of the kind of careful control needed to really succeed with this stuff. CD and LP editions on The Flenser.
  • CD (FR65CD)

Mumdance & Logos
FFS / BMT


Krootchey
Qu'Est-Ce Qu'll A (D'Plus Que Moi Ce Negro La?)

Philippe Krootchey was a highly active DJ in Paris in the 70s and 80s. Forming the group Love International releasing Dance On The groove And Do The Funk in 1981. Here we have a remaster and reissue of his debut solo outing housing his huge energy in freak out electro-disco. Features the english version and slowed remix. Vinyl on Dark Entries.

Illum Sphere
Glass EP2

Second of two EPs that take a look back at Illum Sphere’s 2016 album Glass that bring a track from the album backed with remixes from select artists. On Glass EP2 they have remixes from Beau Wanzer of Civil Duty and De-Bons-en-Pierre, and Hieroglyphic Being topped off by Illum Sphere’s Red Glass. Comes with bonus digital download of a remix from Fotomachine. Limited pressing.

Illum Sphere
Glass EP1

Returning to Illum Sphere’s 2016 album Glass Ninja Tune have created two EPs each bringing a track from the album backed with remixes from select artists. For Glass EP1 they have remixes from Machine Woman and Gavsborg AKA Equinoxx led by Illum Sphere’s Fall Into Water. Comes with bonus digital download of a remix from Fotomachine. Limited pressing.

Koehler / Stabudown Productions
Jim V Dan

This is a stand-off! A battle between two renegade rave heroes, Koehler and StabUdown Productions aka James Donadio of Prostitutes. Jim V Dan sees the two produce aggressive, tetchy takes on each other’s material. Expect banging breaks, deadly bass and industrial bleeps fired by cannons and exploding in showers of dub shrapnel. Mastered and cut by Matt Colton, 300 copies only of this vinyl 12” on Diagonal.

Tim Mislock
Now Is The Last Best Time

Tim Mislock has created a world to make you feel like you are floating in a vast, organic space without boundaries. Mislock’s debut solo album, Now Is The Last Best Time, is an ambient record filled with guiding guitar. He has had to watch his stepdad experience dementia; the slow, inevitable deterioration brought about by Alzheimer’s has informed and shaped the record. He cites Eno, Eluvium and particularly Gavin Bryars as musical influences.
  • Vinyl LP (ERA999LP)
  • £20.49 £15.37 (saving: £5.12)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Last copy
  • CD (ERA999CD)

Antwood
Sponsored Content

Canadian producer Antwood had several releases on netlabels such as B.YRSLF Division and Cocobass before being snatched up by Planet Mu. Returning with his second full length album, Sponsored Content pulls back on the footwork flurries leaving spacious delicate compositions with equal punch. FFO Arca.
  • Vinyl LP (ZIQ388)
  • £11.49 £8.62 (saving: £2.87)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Last copy
  • CD (ZIQ388CD)

Enter Shikari
The Spark

If their latest single release is anything to go by, then The Spark is going to be a big fat political statement, once again. Rou and the lads in Enter Shikari have become increasingly involved in writing about society and the future of the entire planet- especially with Trump sitting in office. This latest release is available on silver vinyl LP and on CD. 
  • Vinyl LP (PIASR990LP)
  • £18.99 £14.24 (saving: £4.75)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Coloured vinyl
  • Last copy
  • CD (PIASR990CDX)

Aritomo
El Ala De Mi Homunculo

El Ala De Mi Homunculo is the rather personal music of Aritomo, recorded and private pressed to express a deep love of Chilean music. This LP takes Aritomo’s influences and filters them through an experimental sensibility, with all the many instruments manned personally by Aritomo. Now issued by Hakanairo, in a specially-shaped sleeve!

Waveform Transmission (Rod Modell & Chris Troy)
V 2.0-2.9

The always fabulous Astral Industries label present the first new material in 22 years from Rod Modell (DeepChord, cv313) and the elusive Chris Troy as Waveform Transmissions. Their previous album of drifting, droning ambient came via Italy's Silent label in 1996, and then, nothing... 'V 2.0-2.9' is comprised of four eighteen minute cuts of serene ambient bliss, each luxuriously spread across a full side of vinyl. Housed in a gorgeous gatefold sleeve with artwork by Theo Ellsworth.

The Breathing Effect
The Fisherman Abides

A tender, multi-faceted sophomore LP here. While the quirky nautical focus of The Fisherman Abides recalls British Sea Power, there is a far greater stylistic scope to the songwriting from The Breathing Effect here. The group wed contemporary jazz chops to Mogwai-indebted post-rock and synth-led indie to create a record rich with detail and feeling. Out via Alpha Pup.
  • Vinyl LP (APR100LP)

Hogni
Two Trains

Hogni already makes music as GusGus and Hjaltalin, but that just wasn’t enough for him, so here he is with a new outlet. As Hogni, he’s doing something different, crooning in a futuristic R&B style over busy instrumentals that mix classical music and electronic experimentation. Two Trains is very cinematic stuff.
  • Vinyl LP (ERATP103LE)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Coloured vinyl
  • Limited edition
  • Vinyl LP (ERATP103LP)
  • CD (ERATP103CD)
  • £11.99 £7.19 (saving: £4.80)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Last copy

City
A Goal is an Image

Rabit's hotbed of experimental grime and other hypermodern digital distractions welcomes the first appearance for Vancouver-based artist City. Abstract song structures abound, but there is a strong sense of purpose that guides these crystalline shards of bass, beat and buzz around the frequency range in the spirit of that most current and ambiguous of styles – post-club music.