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Hideous Towns
EP

4 people love me. Be the 5th...

8/10 according to our Clinton

The some might say legendary label Fluff (of Loughborough) had a reputation for putting out ace noise pop in the '90s (Hood, Boyracer, Liechenstein Girl) they then slinked off as labels do but are now once again putting out ace noise pop in very limited numbers.  This one sided LP from the magnificently named Hideous Towns c…view full details.

Cheena
Spend The Night With...

8 people love me. Be the 9th...

8/10 according to our Robin

Look at these dang punks. Leaning on a slab of concrete. Reclining, if you will, in the dark of night. Yep, Cheena are a right bunch of whippersnappers; when they’re not on your darn lawn they play in garage bands like Hank Wood & the Hammerheads and hardcore outfits like Crazy Spirit. The missing piece of the puzzle is of course Margaret Chardiet, who raises eyebrows by ditching the …view full details.

okamotonoriaki
Happy Ending

14 people love me. Be the 15th...

8/10 according to our Clinton

This sounds interesting. Certainly much more interesting than the endless wailing man solos that pass for music in the office this morning. It's a collection of cut and chopped Japanese pop music with a delightfully trilly style and lots of micro cuts. On 'At the Window' (with Cuushe) this is very similar to the sounds of Mum, a delightfull…view full details.

Sad City
Shapes In Formation

5 people love me. Be the 6th...

8/10 according to our Clinton

I'm enjoying this. It seems that Sad City guy Gary Cureth has a wide range of sounds at his disposal. It's like he's fished things out from all over the place to make his rickety brand of house and techno vibes. What he's expert at is creating unusual loops using samples of voices then adding bass lines or melancholic synths over the top. He does this on several occasions throughout the LP but …view full details.

Building Instrument
Kem Som Kan A Leve

4 people love me. Be the 5th...

8/10 according to our Clinton

Right, people this is going to appeal to you. yes YOU! The group use hand instruments such as bells, shakers and all manner of percussion to build up sweet tronica and on 'Rett Ned' top this off with some superb swooping vocals to create something great and unusual sounding that sits somewhere between Grouper and To Rococo Rot. T…view full details.

Repeated Viewing
Art Imitates

6 people love me. Be the 7th...

8/10 according to our Jamie

Repeated Viewing is film score composer Alan Sinclair. Alan’s synth and organ sounds create a suitably atmospheric opening to this electronic soundtrack to the film ‘Art Imitates’ (2015), a ‘cautionary tale of American dream turned Hollywood nightmare’, it says here. The label, Spun Out Of Control, suggest this cassette is ‘music made for late night listening…view full details.

R.E.M.
Eponymous

3 people love me. Be the 4th...

8/10 according to our Clinton

It is indeed a compilation as Jack notes in his review below and perhaps doesn't flow as well as their albums but this was my introduction to R.E.M when I was nobbut a youth and I enjoyed following their trajectory from oddball pastoral post punk janglers on the opening 'Radio Free Europe' to the closing chart-ready dash of 'It's the End of the World As We Know It'. In between you get all the I…view full details.

R.E.M.
Life's Rich Pageant

4 people love me. Be the 5th...

9/10 according to our Clinton

Right, people listen up. R.E.M were fucking amazing. Let's just take what they did in the '80s on it's own and we have an incredible body of work. 'Lifes Rich Pageant' was the moment they went from pastoral mumblers to a potential stadium rock band and hits the sweet spot just right. The album has so many highlights that it's hard to know where to begin but we could start at 'Begin the …view full details.

Gultskra Artikler
Industria

8 people love me. Be the 9th...

8/10 according to our Jamie

Yes, this is what I like! 2- 3- and 4- minute electro / techno jams are the way forward and this latest Opal Tape has them in spades. ‘Distortion’ opens this tape by Gultskra Artikler (I dunno) and jackhammers those beats while subtle sounds come in from all parts of the spectrum. Great stereo imaging, real nice on headphones or big speakers. And then, suddenly I’m transported…view full details.

Various
U S S R (Ur Social Status Resistance)

8 people love me. Be the 9th...

8/10 according to our Jamie

U S S R (Ur Social Status Resistance) collects together the work of a few of Russia and Ukraine’s contemporary electronic music producers and experimenters, compiled by Kirill aka YancityGurl for the ever consistent Opal Tapes. Rad Machine (Valeriy, from Yekaterinburg) runs his techno beats, snares and kick drum over samples of birdsong; the pads are punctuated by tweets on the tr…view full details.

Johnny Foreigner
Mono No Aware

3 people love me. Be the 4th...

8/10 according to our Robin

Long-time emos Johnny Foreigner have been mining their personal style in the corner of the room while everyone pays attention to the bands reviving the same sound they play around them, but if you feel like listening to ‘Mono No Aware’ everything will be fine. On this record, they make no bones about their mathiness, nor their sentimental noise pop approach, bringing it back to the …view full details.

Kink Gong
Erhai Floating Sound

2 people love me. Be the 3rd...

8/10 according to our Jamie

‘Erhai Floating Sound’ is a recording of a live performance which took place on Erhai lake in Yunnan, China in 2010. Kink Gong -- Laurent Jeanneau -- and Julien Claus produced electronic sounds from their fishing boat, floating on the lake, which connected via underwater cables to four other boats, each of them carrying a speaker, to produce the sounds which must have amazed their a…view full details.

K. Leimer
Closed System Potentials

4 people love me. Be the 5th...

8/10 according to our Robin

Longtime synth experimentalist K. Leimer goes all archive on himself here, repressing his electronic hammock record ‘Closed System Potentials’. Recorded way back in ‘79, this record of generously lilting chords and uplifting figures would sound vintage as hell, if it didn’t sound like what many a new-age leaning ambient musician had predicated their career on. Melodies f…view full details.

Jefre Cantu-Ledesma
Songs Of Remembrance

3 people love me. Be the 4th...

8/10 according to our Jamie

OK one, no two -- no, three things first. Firstly, and most importantly, there was a mis-press so this is ‘Songs of Remembrance’ and not ‘Songs of Forgiveness’ as stated on the centre label. That’s right, they (re-)released two Jefre Cantu-Ledesma albums and we at Norman received them on the same day with misleading information, and I’m easily confused anyway…view full details.

Maar
Absolute Delay

3 people love me. Be the 4th...

8/10 according to our Robin

The line-connecting name Maar belongs to two electronic folks who make cold, minimalist music that booms out of your speakers and into your refrigerated heart. It could only be Umor rex. ‘Absolute Delay’ brings together Michael Vallera, who’s been about on Opal Tapes before, and Joseph Clayton Mills, known previously for Haptic. Their music is a sort of chiming circuit, with s…view full details.

Brett Naucke
Executable Dreamtime

2 people love me. Be the 3rd...

9/10 according to our Robin

Umor Rex bingo: does the press release have “modular synthesis” in it? You sunk my battleship. We love it though: the label has been going from strength to strength with its abstract, sometimes meditative, often chilly records. Of the tape batch recently dumped into the world, though, Brett Naucke’s might be the loveliest, a noisy but brightly giddy release that spea…view full details.

Siavash Amini & Matt Finney
Familial Rot

3 people love me. Be the 4th...

8/10 according to our Robin

After listening to his gorgeous, forest-wading drone record ‘What The Wind Whispered to the Trees’, it’s kinda hard to ever envision a version of Siavash Amini who’s released on Umor Rex. The plot twist of my life today is that he has: ‘Til Human Voices Wake Us’ was an early Amini work with a similar strand of literary influence and tone poem poise, using amb…view full details.

Mogador
Overflow Pool

6 people love me. Be the 7th...

8/10 according to our Clinton

I wish I knew how to drift. How to….how you say? ….relax. If I did then this new album from Will Long the man who makes music as Celer could be the perfect soundtrack to these relaxing times. Indeed the press release advises that it is 'ideal for floatation tanks'. Will doesn’t rush anything..he’s probably spent the best part of …view full details.

Sinner DC
MEG/CDG

5 people love me. Be the 6th...

9/10 according to our Clinton

Sinner DC have long been one of my favourite electronical groups  - me and them go way back, way way back to the golden days of ‘Dog vs Babysitter’. The Swiss music makers have here dug into the archives of the Museum of Ethnography in Geneva and using these sound sources have crafted a deliciously drifting LP of fractured electronica. There is one incredible highlight …view full details.

Silver Waves
EP3

5 people love me. Be the 6th...

8/10 according to our Laurie

I have not heard Bristolians Silver Waves until now, but the best way I can find to describe them is like if Silver Apples had been born 20 years ago into a world of digital soundmangling instead of analog buffoonery. Imagine if they got to know Aphex, u-ziq and Alva Noto …view full details.

Daniel Thomas Freeman
The Infinite and the Unknowable

2 people love me. Be the 3rd...

9/10 according to our Ant

You all remember Daniel Thomas Freeman’s brilliant ‘The Beauty Of Doubting Yourself’ CD on Home Normal right? Well that was released some five years ago - so his second album (not counting his work as part of Rameses III) you could say…view full details.

Jameszoo
Fool

5 people love me. Be the 6th...

8/10 according to our Clinton

This is the latest attempt by Brainfeeder to cover the entire world in jazz tronica mayhem. Certainly fans of Fly-Lo and Kam Wash need to take note of this offering from Dutchman Jameszoo which contains enough Herbie Hancock style wibblery and Thundercat li…view full details.

ISAN + Paco Sala + R Elizabeth + A New Line (Related)
Rough Imaginary

3 people love me. Be the 4th...

8/10 according to our Clinton

Well in the end I just went an opened the thing. So excited I was by hearing three unreleased A New Line (Related) tracks that I stuck my finger in the shrink wrap and clawed the thing open.   Indeed the three ANL(R) tracks are worth the admission price alone particularly opener ‘A Finger But No Pulse To Put It On’ which showcases a so…view full details.

ASUNA
Tide Ripples

4 people love me. Be the 5th...

8/10 according to our Clinton

Lord knows I need a soothe and Japanese guitarist Asuna Arashi is in pole position to be the person to do it. This is a lovely two track album of remarkably beautiful guitar textures. Unlike contemporaries such as Hakobune there aren’t many effects at play here just simpler acoustic guitars intertwining with minimal colour added by gentle accordion a…view full details.

Floating Points
Kuiper

8 people love me. Be the 9th...

8/10 according to our Jamie

Two gorgeous, expansive, synth and full band electronic jams from Sam Shepherd. He wrote the tracks on this record at the start of the ‘Elaenia’ LP sessions, only later when performing live and kindling an interest in a band setting and freeform experimentation did the seed for this record become sown. On ‘Kuiper’, the stage is set with bubbling electronic oscillations f…view full details.

Ben Seretan
Bowl Of Plums

10 people love me. Be the 11th...

8/10 according to our Robin

It’s another dramatic injury time defeat for our staff as we compare a record to the completely incorrect acts and get our hopes up for the completely wrong thing. Having heard comparisons between Ben Seretan and folk-hushed titans like Sufjan and Bon, it’s clear that we’ve previously only listened to half of …view full details.

The Amazing
Ambulance

3 people love me. Be the 4th...

8/10 according to our Robin

This album is just distracting. I’m sorry. That’s what it is. It sounds uncanny in too many instances, barreling between the exact act it’s accidentally mimicking at the flick of a switch. The Amazing are an epic tour-de-force of a rock band, crafting meandering but worthwhile pop songs out of lush, stormy psychedelia: what they do is commendable, but can we also just talk abo…view full details.

Lou Rhodes
theyesandeye

2 people love me. Be the 3rd...

8/10 according to our Robin

This record is a lot better than air conditioning. Floating into the CD player like a relieving breeze on this hottest and harshest of summer days, ‘theyesandeyes’ has won my heart. I’m not even going to acknowledge that slightly terrifying, pastoral-Godfather album cover -- this record is a lovely slice of ‘60s influenced folk rock that puts you in the shade and lets yo…view full details.

Desolate Horizons / Endless Melancholy
Deep As The Dark Blue Sea

4 people love me. Be the 5th...

8/10 according to our Jamie

The sea. That unending expanse of water which your eyes follow to the horizon. Standing on a South Kent clifftop on a misty morning at dawn, or gazing out across a lemon yellow sparkling estuary in North Lancashire at dusk; there it is, the water lapping at your feet, the sound of crashing waves and the smell of seaweed drawing you in like no other feature of the landscape. In Britain, anyway, …view full details.

Mark Pritchard
Under The Sun

12 people love me. Be the 13th...

8/10 according to our Clinton

The sort of record that I'm fuming we weren't able to review when it came out. Main reason  - no soundclips, delicious non opening vinyl. We have no excuses for leaving it this long despite Warp doing a very good job of keeping the thing off the internet.  It was only when I heard the fluttering Lemon Jellyisms of the title track last week flo…view full details.

The Doozer
Flying Bird

4 people love me. Be the 5th...

8/10 according to our Jamie

‘The Doozer’ is, of course, a man from Cambridge with a guitar, a voice and a set of pop tunes of the psychedelic variety. Said tunes are, naturally, ‘disparate and slow-burning’, it says here. Great, just what I need when I have approximately 15 minutes left to finish writing this review, re-read and spell-check it, before sending it to Clint. It’s actuall…view full details.

Cynthia
Between Two Worlds

5 people love me. Be the 6th...

9/10 according to our Jamie

Cynthia are, and I quote, “a pair of well-known artists”. Wait, what? That’s IT? This is the only information Cynthia, the little teases, have seen fit to reveal about themselves, but I think it’s safe to say they’re not the Gallagher brothers. The CD begins with ‘Between Two Worlds’, the titular track consisting of a long, hazy, fuzzy, distantl…view full details.

Unidentified
001

4 people love me. Be the 5th...

9/10 according to our Jamie

Literally unidentified, this record seems like quite a discovery. From a forgotten about tape, apparently found in the basement of a North Devon charity shop... why is it all I ever find is Hot Fuzz on dvd? It had been lurking there for nearly 30 years, so that would put the music at a late-80s vintage. Early Reflections, on remastering duties, did a sterling job as the sound is pretty decent, …view full details.

Jherek Bischoff
Cistern

3 people love me. Be the 4th...

Fresh from performing 'Black Star' with pals at the recent Bowie tribute thing in New York, composer Jherek Bischoff has clambered into an empty two million gallon water vat in Washington state in order to improvise the pieces that have become 'Cistern'. While there he reflected on growing up on a sailing boat (none of these people have normal childhoods do they?) Anyway the result is this stellar album of orchestral innovation.   …view full details.

Collector
Triple Crown

7 people love me. Be the 8th...

8/10 according to our Laurie

Good morning Laurie, here’s some mildly abrasive semi cerebral noisy stuff to attempt to review with your addled mind. But don’t worry, it’s got beats too, and you like beats right? You’re always happy listening to snare drums and snare drums and bass drums. Maybe I just wanna listen to plaintive cello music for the rest of my life. The truth is that Clint gave m…view full details.

TTNG
Disappointment Island

5 people love me. Be the 6th...

8/10 according to our Robin

Math rockers can sigh too. I don’t remember exactly the point at which fiddly guitar theatrics became submerged with the wide-eyed super-caring of emo (n.b. it was a long time ago), but as someone who feels more than he calculates, I’m all for it. TTNG, now abbreviated from the once elongated This Town Needs Guns, make music that gets showy…view full details.

Nobody
Prodigal Son

5 people love me. Be the 6th...

8/10 according to our Clinton

It's slightly depressing when I hear artists who I think of as fairly contemporary being described as 'veterans' but indeed LA beatmaker Nobody has been around since the '90s and that's a long, long time ago.  For the uninitiated he makes the kind of head nodding back packer hip hop that also appeals to fans of the likes of Daedelus and …view full details.

Roisin Murphy
Take Her Up To Monto

10 people love me. Be the 11th...

8/10 according to our Robin

Wowee. This is my first encounter with Roisin Murphy (full disclosure is just as valuable as journalistic insight… question mark?) and I am overwhelmed. This record opens with a pretty good summary of how it’s going to play, with synthesis of electronic tinkering -- chords deep, bleeps squeaky, melodies video gaming -- and lyrical missives both verbose and performative. Ta…view full details.



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Timestamp: Wednesday 27th July, 12:33:33