@@@ Deathprod: Compositions (N/A, 2022) This be some dark chill electronic music that is the bandcamp album of the day. How chill is chill and how does the darkness effect the chill? Depends on who’s imbibing this music Imma guessing. There are 17 compositions on this record and Composition 2 is coming out a bit less chill than Composition 1 with more of a chainsawy patch and some modulation. Two sounds push against each other, it’s cool. There are moments where the music pulls itself out of its background music for Satan mode and demands my attention but a lot of it just passes by. There’s an improvised quality to this music that I like. It is meant to be a dark slow ride, I get that — part of me does struggle with the minimal soundscapes but part of me thinks it’s okay to want more. It is strange and kinda cool to think of quietly disturbing background music for ill bitches like Jeff Bezos and Donald Trump to eat their dinner of baby skulls and workers’ sweat.
@@@ Lila Tirando a Violeta: Desire Path (NAAFI Tapes, 2022) I’m scraping through all manner of end of 2022 lists as not much new music is released in January and I found this record towards the bottom of Pitchfork’s best electronic music of the year. I like the opening track, it’s got funk in the beat and weirdness in the rest of the mix so you can just kick back and groove on that weirdness as she pumps the beat. Let’s peep a bit more. I don’t like the second track as much as the beat is a bit more klunky and takes over the track a bit much but hey, you might dig it. The third track Tungsten Tears is a starred track on Apple Music and features a vaguely Latin beat that spins around a metallic drop followed by a sound very similar to a thumb piano. Very rhythmic and the melody falls in and synchs with the beat before breaking out into another section. She gets into some wood stick skittering that could be emulating hi hat but it’s stylish and hot and I’m feeling this track. Both dancefloor qualified as well as abstractly interesting to listen to. I wouldn’t say this hits the spot bingo but I respect the arrangements as well as a lot of the feels that the formula produces.
@@@ Chrisman: Makila (Hakuna Kulala, 2022) We’re taking a brief detour into some African electronic music to start the year. The record opens up with the track Alarmed for Passion, notable for its layered drum machine patterns done in a manner I really dig. It’s got a steady pulse with the kick drum but then has all manner of hectic rhythm layered on top. It’s pleasantly aggro and the bulk of the melodic component is baked into hammered percussion type sounds. I am enjoying the medium darkness of this record and there’s some really interesting stuff going on here. I’m a huge fan of cultural mashing when it goes the way I want it to go. This musician is taking familiar elements and ideas from hip hop, trap feels but not beats, and dark industrial stuff and throwing in some polyrhythm and different vibes to it. These sounds are all pretty synthetic sounding but the way it’s all put together ends up producing a very organic and alive musical vibe. I don’t know about other folks but I just get lost in this shit I find it very engaging. Check it out!
@@@ Pole: Tempus (Mute, 2022) I got to this record via a meh 10 best list on the Guardian. This looks set to be an abstract and dubby techno record with some techno feels but other stuff and I like other stuff with electro bits. These are all six and seven minute bangers, the opener a tad sleepy but this second one, Grauer Sand, is brisk with some low dub bass and lots of squiggle action. I like it as it’s tight and loose, some techno be too tight. Duder is quite expert at layering in the sounds, processed and otherswise and then dropping some tight snare sounds and other bits to make a fully assembled burger. There’s an awareness of time and space here that I dig, it’s fresh and unfolding in a way that I find really enjoyable, lots of good bangers on here. Check this out. Could be a late in the season find and I’ll take it. You can chill on this while also paying attention to how it rolls by.
@@@ Authentically Plastic: Aesthetic Terrorism (Hakuna Kalala, 2022) A couple of top tracks off Crack’s best of 2022 list. The track below is the opening track and it’s a blend of hand drumming/hand drum samples mixed with some medium aggro industrial grinding pulses. As the tune moves towards the end, there’s more drumming, an arpeggiated synth, and the steady pulse. I like a lot of the sounds here but they tend to be static without a lot of changes to the tracks once they get rolling. I wish the arrangements were more dynamic.
@@@ Horsegirl: Anti-Glory (Matador, 2022) I guess this kind of music just keeps rolling on, somewhat committed to whatever it’s committed to and put out by stalwarts like Matador. I skipped through to the second tune because I was nodding out on the opener and this is is cool and I don’t want to be anti-guitar indie but is it too much to ask for some excitement? Have we outgrown flipping out? It appears so. It’s perfectly fine music and if you like indie guitar music check this out and you might dig. I will be checking other stuff out.
@@@ Dawn Richard and Spencer Zahn: Vantablack (Merge, 2022) I’m a big fan of Dawn Richard and I saw this collaboration between her and someone I’ve never heard of. It opens jazz like and ambient with a track called Coral and let’s see where this goes. The sorta New Age-y intro track hopefully will give way to a banger, a dancefloor banger but thus far the second track is spillover from the first track. Oh Lord, I fear there are to be no bangers on this record, it’s thus far chill sitch New Age-y sax playing with a little electro garnish. Color me bummed. I was hoping for some pumped up abstract dancefloor banging and I got was a lousy t-shirt.
@@@ Ariel Zetina: Cyclorama (Local Action Records, 2022) A last listen off this week’s 10 most reviewed records on Pitchfork. It is a dance record with multiple guest vocalists and the video below is the opening track and the title track. The track opens with a quick arpeggiated synth, then the kick, then the classic unt tss of techno we know so well. Then the piano vamp and we are at full techno. Occasionally she fucks with the arpeggiator which breaks the rigidity and I do wish the arrangement was less rigid. I’m growing a wee bit sick of the central arpeggiated synth, it’s a bit of a Chinese torture device. Just as I typed that it disappeared and a new section begins. I’m on the third track and I like a bunch of the sounds but the arrangements are too static for me, I want more action. That’s just me and I get that techno because it’s a dance music tends to not move around a bunch but there is techno out there that is more sonically dynamic.
@@@ Macula Dog: Neosporin (Wharfcat, 2022) My last listen off this week’s Pitchfork 10 most reviewed albums of the week. I think this is trying to be really weird electronic music and it mostly succeeds at it. It’s a bit light and could be weirder if it had some rough sounds. When it does have rough sounds like a blasting bass it’s much better. It reminds of some stoned out Devo flavors rammed through a blenderizer, I like parts of it but overall it’s missing something for me. Some meaning and/or reason for all these sounds. It’s interesting to listen to it pass through but if it had some message or meaning to it besides the sounds it could be really powerful.
@@@ Orchestra Gold: African Psychedelic Rock (Self-released, 2022) Music publicist email. I’m not sure what’s going on with this record as I got an email about it yesterday but Apple Music has it with a 2017 release date so weird. I like aspects fo this guitar heavy first track most notably the sax player going against the grain and the rhythm section. The second tune is a burner at a much higher tempo and sounds less claggy than the opener. The singer is pumped on this track. I like the production here it’s very crunchy and aggressive and the third tune is the best of what I heard. I kinda wish the guitar player was wilder and didn’t stay in the pocket so much. The drummer and the bass player are tight tight tight so he could just roll out and shred but he only goes halfway. Oh no, he’s getting out there in his third track solo c’mon go crazy bruv! I am finishing this post and see that their new single is up on Apple Music and I reviewed their older record so that clarifies that.
@@@ Gilla Band: Post Ryan (Rough Trade, 2022) A couple of listens off this week’s 10 most reviewed albums at Pitchfork email. The video below is the last track on the album and it opens up with a big wedge of hum/static and noise. Then a classic rock beat, then a No Wave singer, and then a slowdown. The drop away to just some sound in the chorus is pretty unexpected. I like the arrangement, the singer less so, but the arrangement is fresh. Lemme peep another track. Oh Lord they bring in a psycho electric guitar strum and I feel that. I switched over to the opening track, it’s the starred one on Apple Music and it looks set to be another industrial noise/rock mashup. All right-y then I’m on the third track I’ve listened to and I maintain my previous opinion.
@@@ Lucrecia Dalt: Dicen (RVNG, 2022) This is my kind of shit, where an artist takes some abstract electronic music and smashes it into traditional forms, in this case Central and South American dance forms such as the bolero and the tango. I really like albums like this that sorta bath you in all manner of sounds but not all boozhy and high end just for folks with jobs. This is a rare record that can work for both normies and freaks like me. Interesting normies, not you bologna and wonderbread motherfuckers. To conclude, check this out, there’s creativity here, great sounds, freshness, you know everything you would want in a felafel sandwich.
@@@ Edge Slayer: When U Ball (Interference Ball, 2022) I got to this hip hop record via the UK online music magazine Crack. That’s right Crack Magazine! It’s slotted as hip hop, but this is a female driven r&b record. From New Orleans, home of many great and strange musicians. Bflat Athame is the title of the third track and it’s a dancefloor banger and this is the second track with pretty explicit lyrics. Lots of refences to her vajeen and how juicy it is, how excited she is, it’s in that vein. I like the synths here as well as the beat, the vocals a bit less. Let me peep the track clipped below. I don’t mean it personally but I like the sounds much more than the vocal arrangements. It’s just a bit croon-y and could use more energy and variety on this front.