Soon To Be Innocent Fun #2
WORDS BY THEO KOTZ
Welcome to #2, striking back with hot shit old and new. Featured this month are Silver Waves and casual disregard for the constitution of eardrums, Willow and her terse, bass-led take on a Workshop release, and classic gay porn soundtracks from Patrick Cowley via Dark Entries. All that and more await below.
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Silver Waves – EP3
(Howling Owl, 2016)
Three weeks ago I’m being introduced to this quiet, 19 year old kid in an old morgue in Bristol. He is shy, hiding most of his face under very long blonde hair, kind of peering out from under his anxious posture. We are surrounded by screen-printed photographs of some of the heavy and dark shenanigans that have gone down at Bristol’s You’re Not Human over the past few years.
After a brief chat he walks off. After a couple hours of people mosying around marvelling at the nine shades of black ink in the prints, something starts to happen. Everyone shuffles forward and the lights dim. The shy kid from before is standing with his mop of hair curtained round a desk with a machine and some pedals. It’s smoky as fuck but he isn’t shy, nor unassuming anymore. He starts pummelling pedals and buttons, a flashing blur of hair and jerky movements, conjuring this screeching cacophony of noise. It is unfathomably loud, punishingly physical and violent. I am hooked.
Kelly Lee Owens – Oleic
(Smalltown Supersound, 2016)
Here’s an artist really coming into her own. She cut her teeth working at Pure Groove in Farringdon alongside Ghost Culture and Daniel Avery and was previously best known for her vocal contribution to the latter’s ‘Drone Logic’. Her output since has allowed her musicality and sense of melody to shine and this latest record sees her satisfyingly grow further. The Jenny Hval rework – finally out but on wax only – is brilliant. But the title track’s gloopy, arpeggiated grasp for the stars is five minutes of pure release.
Poirier Marshall Partners – Atelier4
(Kit Records, 2016)
Gorgeously neon, digital rambling in the technicolour snow. This record drips, seeps and bounces its way around your brain in crystalline clarity until it hangs there like a glacial stalagmite. As alien as it is familiar, it makes me feel weightless.
Arthur Russell – Another Thought
(Point Music, 1994)
'THIS IS HOW WE WALK ON THE MOON'
Surprise! More Arthur Russell. Feels like the quintessential AR tune to me, sort of. I guess that doesn’t really exist. His cello is haunted, bereft. But somehow there’s this groove. The perfectly loose percussion; the playful jabs of horns from here there and everywhere; gorgeous, uplifting vocals delivered with that breathless authority: everything is just gorgeous.
Willow – Workshop 23 (Workshop, 2016)
Willow first appeared on my radar with ‘Feel Me’: her track on the Workshop 21 comp. It was easily the best track on there and it stood out on Move D’s fabric mix too. Workshop's the ideal home for her low-key brilliance. B1 is the highlight: a dusty skitter falling away to let a garbled acid bassline shimmer and echo down its endless corridor. A2’s sparse, dubby reflection deserves a mention too.
Arthur Miles – To Adelaide EP
Upcoming on To Adelaide EP, the first release on new Bristol label Piff. The record is a compilation of music from Aus based producers but only Miles’ track is available before release via Boiler Room debuts. Melodic, airy, riding on infectiously bottomless kicks, 'Jessica’s Place' promises much from the imprint and the debut EP
CC-Dust – CC-Dust
Dreamy, euphoric new-wave from Vexx’s Jane Dunphe and Laurent Dagnicourt – played by everyone’s favourite wise old sage Andrew Weatherall on NTS. Consensus is that lead single ‘Never Gonna Die’s joyful rejection of mortality is the piece de resistance but, like Weatherall, I am totally enthralled by ‘Mutiny’. Underpinning its nostalgic cascading synths is a bassline lifted straight from the Peter Hook manual of how to steal the show.
DVS1 – Love Under Pressure (Transmat, 2010)
I had this vision of myself hearing this out for the first time the other day, I think I just smiled for ages. Techno therapy.
DJ Spinn – Off That Loud
'DUBBY Ft. Danny Brown'
Spinn’s first record on Hyperdub is an absolute stormer. Across the record but particularly with ‘Dubby’ (which features Spinn’s longtime friend, collaborator and fellow teklife founder Rashad, who sadly died in 2014) Spinn interweaves sounds from outside of the Chicago bubble to embellish his trademark juke with something more. ‘Dubby’ meshes jungle with the blueprint to flesh out the hardness, backing up the ghetto-house edge that Danny Brown brings. It just bangs. It got me thinking too about the current grime explosion in the US, and how the rules are changing. Footwork has had a classic couple of years and with the younger likes of DJ Earl and DJ Paypal coming through and pushing, there’s no telling how far this scene could evolve beyond Chicago. Whatever happens, Spinn is a don.
Patrick Cowley – Muscle Up (Dark Entries, 2015)
'SOMEBODY TO LOVE TONIGHT'
Gay porn soundtracks from one of the OGs of weird disco. Cowley is known for his unique San Francisco take on HI-NRG but in 1979 he was contacted by the owner of famous Hollywood gay porn company, Fox Studios, who he then sent a load of recordings he’d been making since college. These records had dropped out of most people’s consciousness for years until Dark Entries started putting out reissues. This is the second of three so far, made up of recordings from 1973 – 1979. All of them are incredible. It’s the sound of experimentation within the mind of one of the most pioneering synth masters from those early days.
Artwork design by Yasseen Faik