Category: New Release
Touch of Jupiter is the latest release from Vancouver’s Jean Brazeau, aka Friendly Chemist. Employing an amalgam of ambient and vintage house idioms, Brazeau excels at pairing poignant harmonic sequences with sustained and blunted timbres. The work, as a result, possesses a highly resonant affective dimension, which reveals itself quickly and lures you in for repeated listens.
Stream the tracks above and pick up a digital copy from 1080p. You’ll have to add the limited cassette edition to your wantlist as it’s, not surprisingly, sold out at the source.
Arc Numbers is producer Bbjr in collaboration with a number of guest producers, vocalists, and instrumentalists, including Montreal’s YlangYlang and Velvet Glacier. Though the album is quite diverse stylistically, its detailed production and uninhibited character holds it all together, resulting in a kind of chaotic beauty that is very much in keeping with the beloved Jeunesse Cosmique aesthetic.
Last month, Montreal-based electro-experimental saccharine troupe Yàocavé dropped the apparently soda-themed and absolutely fanta-stic Fanta-C Plus(experimental pop-goes-POP if you will).
Along with their from-scratch carbonated goodness, Yàocavé utilize transmuted elements of a Fab Four ode-to-optimism, Byrne & co.’s elegiac declaration of love as an effigial edifice and more to create the sonic equivalent of Future Mutant Cola™ from 3015.
Forget about that diet, you deserve this one. Fanta-C Plus is (Orange) Crush-worthy and is out now via Jeunesse Cosmique.
It’s always interesting when musicians who have cemented themselves in a particular genre go off on experimental tangents in completely different styles of music and pull it off extremely well, while maintaining signature elements of their unique musical identity. This is the case with Winnipeg’s Asher Moai, also known as Famine, who has sidetracked from his usual established forays in Ambient, Industrial, IDM and Breakcore to make some very unusually upbeat and accessible Italo Disco that recycles odd bargain bin Good Will cassette tapes, children’s books, childhood TV and top radio pop that may just be one of the most gratifying things to come out of Winnipeg since… who am I kidding, nothing fun ever comes out of Winnipeg (kidding).
While workmode is obviously rooted in electro disco, you can definitely hear his origins, especially with the ever-present pounding kicks and gyrating EBM arpeggios, which is not to say that his own hybrid-blend of disco doesn’t have authenticity to it, Asher Moai gives off the air of someone having a fun time experimenting with something new. It’s the new disco of fevered winter dreams of bumping sweaty bodies on stuffy bar dance-floors in the short Winnipeg summer, all with a quick-witted sense of humour and Winnipegian ephemera framed within a bouncy 4/4 beat.
My highlights of this LP are “secretz” which has one of the catchiest melodies paired with a perfect blend of natural vocals and vocoder programming, “xian disco action” a complete reconstruction of a cheeeeezy 80s Christian rock song by Silverwind using an acapella vocal track paired with some especially euphonic synth stabs, and “the ghost of jack layton” sees him at his most earnest with sweeping pads, a night-driving bassline and restrained, cinematic production.
“рулетка” is perhaps one of the most interesting experiments where only the vocal formants were lifted from Rihanna’s “Russian Roulette” and completely re-melodized, swallowed and spit-out as a kicking, electro ear-worm.
Get ready for some sweaty summer nights by downloading workmode from Bandcamp now.
“Okay, we’re gonna blast off, ready, here we go?” asks Tom Whalen, aka Space Bros., who’s also known for playing as a live member of Jay Arner‘s band (and its Energy Slime offshoot), before inviting us to come aboard his spaceship. Well count us in for the cosmic voyage, through one of the strangest electronic pop releases we’ve heard so far this year. Sci-fi imagery abounds on his debut record In the Dreamtime of the Saucer People, as spacey synths twist through reverb-y interstellar landscapes on our way to the “Crystal City”. Standout single “Come Aboard the Spaceship” is a deeply catchy galactic funk track that recalls some of the best of classic Ariel Pink, but it’s just the poppiest apex on a record that’s extremely worthy of repeated listens, particularly if you’re in outer space.
Although Toronto’s Math Rosen has been recording electronic music for about a decade, Ada Vale is his first project in which he sings, and thanks goodness he’s picked up the microphone, because his first EP under the new moniker, simply titled Three Songs, is seriously excellent. First track “The Illusionist” is the most immediately gratifying on the pop front, featuring melancholy vocals over a soupy production, anchored by a grooving dubby beat with a guitar lick repeatedly peeking its head out of the murk. It’s got a sweet lyric video to match:
The other two tracks are gems too: the uptempo “Ring Road” is gloomy electropop worthy of the dancefloor, and the release is rounded out by a great cover of Sinead O’Connor’s “Jump in the River.” All in all, a very solid debut, and we’ll be anxiously watching for his next release.
You can pick up Three Songs from Bandcamp on a PWYW basis.
It seems odd to think of summer, like a faded dream long forgotten after this long winter hibernation, but the debut by Toronto’s Programm reminds me that it’s just around the corner.
Their stellar 4-track EP, Like the Sun, conjures up synesthetic memories of rainy summer nights; how the trees crackle as the breeze sways their branches, how the warm smell of rain liberates the smell of summer, how the distant thunder shatters in the far beyond and how the lighting flashes illusory glimpses of shadowy spectres in bedroom corners.
This haunting, sonic atmosphere of warm tempestuousness is how the title track opens, with reverb-laden walls of guitar, gentle drops of kicks and echoed-crashes of snares and Jackie Game’s lush vocals which pierce through the dark shoegazy storm with lyrics of lust, longing and reflections on our temporary existence on this mortal coil.
As the EP progresses, their sound becomes more torrential. On the second track, they begin to trade off the vocal duties with Jakub Soma handling the lead amid a similar shoegazy hailstorm of production which finally lets up, as the sun shines in with Game’s vocals providing a warm contrast, until Soma returns with the mantra and track title, “We Barely Escaped”. They get quite psych with “Soft Shadows”, a steady howl of guitar feedback, fuzzy synths, tribal drums and sparse vocals washed deep in effects. “ZeroZeroZero” opens with a somber chord-progression played on an accordion which then lifts off into a growing static haze of saturated guitars & synths backed by programmed white noise until we are back to the ground with a gentle pat at the piano and a gradual ambient drone, which plays out this sepulchral EP on a very hopeful note.
Having issued six releases in 2015 thus far (!!!), Ian Doig-Phaneuf has quietly become one of Canada’s most prolific electronic music producers. Each release explores a different stylistic framework, spanning textural ambient works, lush acoustic vignettes, and various UK dance permutations. A dreamy nostalgic dimension present in nearly every track, however, renders this seemingly eclectic approach into a cogent musical vision.
Each release is top shelf, so we arbitrarily decided to feature Eight Trigrams, a brilliant exploration of vintage jungle idioms laced with hiss, echo, and poignant textures and melodies. Stream the featured tracks above and pick up this highly recommended set via IDP’s Bandcamp today!
Wurm Watson is a bedroom-electro project from Sarnia, Ontario, whose debut Chapter 1 is a chameleon of an album, jumping from style-to-style throughout its brief 29 minute run-time.
The album introduces its genre-bending ways immediately with the psychedelic instrumental “Star Boeing” transitioning beautifully from the folkier opener “Sunnyside Down.” We’re always suckers for a nice in-album transition. From there, Chapter 1 goes in so many different directions (in a good way), the pure folk of album-closer “Thievery,” to jam-band freakouts in “Astronaut” and “Rain”, both featuring Church Camp Counselors, Watson’s former band.
The standout track in all this variety is “Closed Eyes” with its pure electro groove and Vince Clarke style analog-sounding synths, and really is the best introduction to the heights the project is capable of.
Wurm Watson is set to begin a new phase in his development. He is refurbishing an RV in the hopes of turning it into a mobile studio and driving from Sarnia to BC recording along the way. You can follow along with this super ambitious project on his vlog.
As we wait for the NEXT chapter, Chapter 1 is available for PWYC via Bandcamp, and comes strongly recommended.
Okay, we’ve been totally remiss in taking over a month to write about this one. Formerly of Moscow, ID (and therefore eligible for coverage under the Silent Shout Border State Edict), Psychic Rites may reside in Portland now, but they’ll always be the electroiest Idahoans in our hearts. Singularity is their latest and greatest release to date, four tracks of sinister, mostly hard-hitting synthpop with some added remixes to boot. Really, any release with a song entitled “Pallet Cleanser” has won us over before it even starts. And lest we forget, the video for the title track, in all its gory glory:
Singularity is out now on Aural Sects. Go get it!