Third helping from ‘One-man art-pop prankster’ Alvin Spetz. Alvin Spetz is also the maverick singer-songwiter responsible for two of the most eccentric and original albums of the last 6 or 7 years.
Released under the moniker of Full English Breakfast, his self-titled debut and follow up ‘Candy In Weightlessness’ earned rave reviews from broadsheets to blogs. Now album No.3 ‘The Mixtape of Things’ is ready and Spetz likewise is moving on up through the daily nutritional cycle and this time will be known as ‘That Will Be Lunch’.
Alvin’s new mixtape is full of songs, some only just scraping past 30 seconds, that one moment remind you of children’s TV theme tunes and the next sound like they might be playing in an industrial discotheque from the future. In this unsettling but always playful landscape you’re almost half-expecting the whimsical paen to the snacks marketing division at Waitrose when it arrives in the shape of ‘The Campaign for Plain Nuts’.
Nestled amongst all the strangeness is an inspired cover of Talking Heads classic ‘One in a Lifetime’. Spetz has delved deep into the DNA of this ground-breaking track and extracted what can only be described as ‘previously unseen footage’. Like an inquisitive kid he’s taken the engine apart without a hope in hell of ever putting it back together again in the correct order. But this hasn’t stopped him re-assembling it.
Spetz discovered music while studying at Aberdeen university in the 80s. Inspired by the fledgling indie sounds of Edwyn Collins, The Fall, Josef K and The Pop Group, he embarked on a journey that’s included nascent recordings with members of The Shamen, dabbling with Sufism and the tabloids hounding him as a result, burning everything he’s ever recorded (several times) and playing one gig. Ever. In Belgium.
The four original members of Lød formed after graduating school in Copenhagen, inspired by the post-punk that was prominent in the fervent, close-knit music community of the city. The first version of Lød was very much birthed in this same shadow: loud and heavy. With time their sound began to rely less on distortion, foregoing aggression for a greater focus on melody and rhythm.
Bands like LCD Soundsystem, Suicide and Kraftwerk provided further inspiration and it became an ambition for Lød to create music that - while never taking the easy route - could make people dance.
With their debut EP, released via London-based label Tough Love, they have very much achieved this. They're a dance band, in the same way one might consider NEU a dance band. The recording of Folder began in October 2016 with engineer Julius Pedersen, who helped the band shape tracks that had taken more than six months to write.
The result is a 24-minute, four song debut EP sung in Danish. You might consider it uncompromising were the songs not so accessible. And despite their length, these are 'songs', with defined melodies and structure. Looping and monolithic, early commentators in their home country have noted a “trance-punk” aspect to their sound. Such nomenclature can be tedious, but it's not a million miles from the truth.
Bringing to mind the likes of Preoccupations in their similarly propulsive take on post-punk, Lød add a further glacial edge indebted to both early industrial and no wave.
LeVent are Maryna Russo (BASS) Heike Rädeker (BASS VI / VOX) Frankie Neumeier (DRUMS) . Berlin based trio LeVent got stoned, forgot to replace their guitarist, and then kept his name anyway. Formed in August 2015, the band has kept their shit together enough to have shared the stage with a bunch of talents including Kadavar, The Underground Youth, and Die Nerven, to name a few.
They also self-released a four track EP on cassette in 2016, this is their debut album coming out on 'A' recordings . Like a drunken driver, LeVent swerves up over the curb, drives straight through the garage and total their ride somewhere out in a goat farm.
Bleating at it’s most danceable, they carry listeners far away to get lost in nice nonsense, stuck in heavy forgetting, and transfixed on what was, leaving you thirsty for more.
Heike from the band says “When someone comes up to you after a concert saying, „I´m going to make you a record“ you are stoked for the moment, but you don´t reckon it will happen... Half a year later Anton Newcombe of Brian Jonestown Massacre called LeVent in to his Cobra Studio in Berlin.
Teaming up with studio engineer Andrea Wright from Parr Street Studios Liverpool the red button got pushed. After what was a super pleasant experience of recording and mixing they are now ready to release the album .
Tracklisting: 1. Wrong Things 2. Lisa 3. Rabbits 4. Fernweh 5. Curious 6. Lighter Thief 7. Empathy 8. Ink 9. Gary 10. Hit Me 11. Mammon
The Limited Double Vinyl is Signed by Richard H Kirk
1st solo album in 5 years, recorded, produced and written by Richard H. Kirk, founding member of Cabaret Voltaire, the album was constructed at Western Works, Sheffield, over a three-year period. Work began with recording on midi and analogue synthesisers before guitar and vocals (Kirk’s first use of vocals in 10 years) were added.
Kirk explains, “A lot of time was spent on post-production, editing and then living with the material and I think it benefited from stepping back and then revisiting after doing other things.”
Although not an overtly political album, it’s hard not to hear a reaction to recent years’ world events in the overwhelming urgency of ‘Nuclear Cloud’ or ‘20 Block Lockdown’ or in ‘New Lucifer / The Truth Is Bad’. When questioned Kirk admits, “It’s not really a political album, but over recent years – during the recording – all manner of horrorshow events have cropped up and now we seem to be in a rerun of the Cold War with Russia back as the Bogeyman.”
The album’s title, Dasein (a German word meaning “being there” or “presence”, often translated into English as “existence”), is a fundamental concept in existentialism. Kirk explains “culture succumbs to nostalgia in much the same way that an individual looks back wistfully to adolescence or childhood - the nostalgia is partly for a time when he or she wasn’t nostalgic, just lived purely IN THE NOW.”
In 2014, during the recording period, Kirk began work on Cabaret Voltaire live and so the two projects coexisted in tandem. Although Kirk’s varied projects have always existed separate to one another, says Kirk, “in the past some solo works served as a blueprint for what I did later with Cabaret Voltaire”.
Billed as a performance consisting solely of machines, multi-screen projections and Richard H. Kirk, Cabaret Voltaire recently announced the first UK performance in over 20 years at the Devil’s Arse Cave (aka Peak Cavern) in Castleton, Derbyshire on Saturday 29 April. Kirk will perform entirely new material for a performance relevant to the 21st Century with no nostalgia.
RECENT PRAISE FOR RICHARD H. KIRK:
“One of the UK’s pioneering electronic agitators” – Electronic Sound
“In five decades of key-bashing and knob-twisting, Richard H. Kirk has remained at the vanguard of electronic music” – FACT
“…decades of electronic innovation, forged in Sheffield” – Uncut
“Kirk was toying with distorted realities from 1970s onwards” – Record Collector
Tracklisting: 1. Lets Jack 2. Lear Jet 3. Nuclear Cloud 4. Do It Right Now 5. New Lucifer / The Truth Is Bad 6. Radioactive Water 7. Invasion Pretext 8. 20 Block Lockdown 9. Sub / Antartic / H20
Great Many Arrows' is the 6th studio album from Damien Dubrovnik, the Danish duo of Loke Rahbek and Christian Stadsgaard. It is also the 200th release on their Posh Isolation label, marking 8 years for both the label and project. The label's inception came with Damien Dubrovnik's debut album, and since then the two have been inseparable. Without Damien Dubrovnik there would most likely have been no Posh Isolation, and vice versa.
'Great Many Arrows' is undoubtedly a high point in the varied discographies of both Rahbek and Stadsgaard. It is the most realized Damien Dubrovnik recording to date, and a standout in Posh Isolation's troves.As a record, 'Great Many Arrows' manages to translate the intensity of the duo's often unrestrained live shows in to carefully crafted studio productions. Unlike the pair's earlier and largely electronic recordings, the compositions on 'Great Many Arrows' set organs, cellos, violas, wind and other acoustic instruments against the backdrop of an electronic landscape.
The new toolset is as apparent on the surface as it is in the enclosed detail, taking the project further from its noise roots than it has ever been. This is not to say that Rahbek and Stadsgaard have traded ferocity for formal constraint. It is rather the opposite. While 'Great Many Arrows' is certainly the pair's most 'musical' work to date, its veneer of accessibility might also make it their most terrifying.
The strength of the recording lies here in the interaction between the melodic, acoustic instrumentation and the bulldozing electronics. Moments of beauty and light are transfigured into utter chaos and rage, the mesmerising change an expression of the equal and opposite form's natural sway as it beckons and slips between its own passing.
'Great Many Arrows' takes its name from a historic archery competition in Kyoto, Japan, in which archers would shoot as many arrows as possible for a 24 hour period. On April 26, 1686, Wasa Daihachiro from Kishū successfully shot 8,133 out of 13,053 arrows, averaging 544 arrows an hour, or 9 arrows a minute, becoming the record holder.