Sinkane - Mars
The DFA debut of Ahmed Gallab (Of Montreal, Yeasayer, Caribou) housed in a heavy tip-on jacket with printed inner.
- Jeeper Creeper
- Lady C'mon
- Making Time
- Warm Spell
- Love Sick
The DFA debut of Ahmed Gallab (Of Montreal, Yeasayer, Caribou) housed in a heavy tip-on jacket with printed inner.
Smiles for miles. The Black Dice classic comes with Miles of Smiles on the A-side and Trip Dude Delay to the B-side in a beautifully collaged sleeve.
The return of DFA Veterans Prinzhorn Dance School. Single LP features many fine songs, including "I Want You", "Your Fire Has Gone Out", and (my personal favorite) "Crisis Team", which you may listen to below. Includes an instant digital download.
The debut album from DFA veteran Shit Robot, this classic double LP comes in an adorably illustrated gatefold sleeve, and features vocal contributions by James and Nancy of LCD, Planningtorock, Alexis from Hot Chip, and Juan Maclean. Highly recommended, you can't beat this price! Comes with a bonus CD copy AND an instant digital download. You have no excuse.
CD now available.
Eric Copeland's debut album as a solo artist on DFA.
The double vinyl is covered inside and out with collages by Eric himself. Double heavyweight vinyl with a download card.
Also available on CD!
Yellow jacket + Black vinyl edition.
At long last, Factory Floor presents their highly anticipated self-titled debut album. A vivid snapshot of a progressive band smashing through yet another ceiling, it’s the first full-length statement from the group that earned a powerful reputation on the strength of the “Fall Back” and “Two Different Ways” singles for DFA—not to mention early releases for Optimo Music and Blast First Petite. Leading up to the release of Factory Floor, the band will play select European festival dates this summer.
Produced and recorded by the group in their North London warehouse space on a vintage mixing desk originally used by Dave Stewart three decades ago to record all the Eurythmics’ early hits, Factory Floor is a visceral trip through the band’s repertoire. The record opens with “Turn It Up,” their most minimal track to date, mixed in astonishing detail by Timothy “Q” Wiles (VCMG, Afrika Bambaataa). “Here Again” is almost (but not quite) their pop song, replete with cascading arpeggios counterbalanced by bubbly synth melody lines and plaintive vocals.
Factory Floor also contains the definitive version of “Two Different Ways,” followed by the muscular and sleek “Fall Back.” “How You Say” finds the band channelling New York’s dance underground—think ESG and Delta Five. “Work Out” is anything but; despite the desultory title, it is in fact sinister street-sound electro. The album closes out with “Breathe In,” a funkified acid disco classic.
Perhaps the most unlikely aspect of Factory Floor’s rise to notoriety is their versatility. Even their most ardent of fans describe their sound as punishing, yet they are equally at home playing raves, alternative festivals, art galleries, cinemas, nightclubs and rock shows; on top of that they’re as likely to collaborate with members of Throbbing Gristle and New Order (not to mention Richard H. Kirk of Cabaret Voltaire, Simon Fisher Turner and Peter Gordon) as they are with contemporary artists such as Haroon Mirza and Hannah Sawtell.
Inspired by the rural environment of his hometown of Veria, Greece, multi-instrumentalist / singer / producer Panagiotis Melidis started writing music as Larry Gus (from the Greek larigas, or larynx) in 2006, soon after the early demise of his previous band Ginger (a bass and drums duo with a sound similar to the early-’00s Providence scene, paired with hip hop overtones).
Melidis initially composed production music, and later on earned a reputation for intense and chaotic live performances. He retained Ginger’s primitive aesthetics of groove based music, along with an obsession for late-’60s / early-’70s free jazz, and combined them with sample-based techniques and crystal-clear psychedelic pop melodies, all merged into infinitely dense layers and polyrhythms.
Stitches, his first proper full-length, was released in 2009 for Greek hip hop label Cast-A-Blast, and Melidis began a yearlong residency at the Music Technology Group in Barcelona as an intern and postgraduate student. He then returned back to Veria to work on his next project, Years Not Living, an album inspired by Georges Perec’s 1978 book Life: A Users Manual and Lucio Battisti’s 1974 album Anima Latina. The sessions yielded a staggering 85 songs, and the entire process, set amidst Greece’s financial crisis, was documented and will be part of the feature film My Friend Larry Gus (directed by Vasilis Katsoupis), to be released in 2013.
Pared down to ten tracks, Years Not Living incorporates a wealth of diverse styles, ranging from ’60s / ’70s psychedelia and pop to hip hop and more.
DFA Records is proud to present We Got a Love, the sophomore full-length by Shit Robot a.k.a. Dublin native Marcus Lambkin. Recorded in Germany and New York, the nine-track album includes the killer recent singles, “Feels Real” and “We Got a Love.”
Like Lambkin’s 2010 debut From the Cradle to the Rave, We Got a Love sports an array of guests that include DFA veterans Nancy Whang, Museum of Love and Luke Jenner (The Rapture), plus hip-house hero Lidell Townsell and Australian singer Holly Backler. The album’s distinctive artwork was created in collaboration with Irish graffiti artist Maser.
'In A Dream' is the third album from The Juan Maclean. If anything, this new LP is further evidence of the "undeniable creative chemistry between house music wizard Juan Maclean & vocalist / former LCD Soundsystem member Nancy Whang". (Pitchfork) The album takes its musical cues from Moroder's Munich to the Funky Nassau sounds of Compass Point and to anytime in downtown NYC.
An album of high anticipated, brand new material on the heels of The Juan Maclean's acclaimed club bangers from the last couple of years. Features singles "A Place Called Space" and "A Simple Design". Everyone that has heard the record loves the hell out of it, and I promise you will too.
It's soul music! A truly universal sound, uniting rhythm and styles from our world over to help you move, relate, and be.
Museum of Love is the musical project of Pat Mahoney (Founding member of LCD Soundsystem) and Dennis McNany (Jee Day).
Longtime friends in New York, McNany and Mahoney found a similar sensibility and a shared vocabulary for interpreting surroundings, something that began with their remix of Battles’ “My Machines feat. Gary Numan” and extended into their creation of a full length record together.
Naming their duo in ode to Daniel Johnston’s song of the same name, Mahoney divulges, “I had always loved the song, and had been thinking of what such an edifice would contain when we were trying to name the project.” McNany continues, “Pat’s a sculptor, I’m a painter, we make music and museums are sacred spaces and love is an elusive thing.”
Museum of Love is the result of a songwriting collaboration between McNany and Mahoney, with McNany writing most of the music, and Mahoney most of the words. Together they edited and arranged the tracks in the studio. Mahoney says the process of collaboration was energizing, while McNany simply explains, “making the record was pure pleasure. Waiting for it to come out has been the hardest thing.”
“Museum of Love moves at a stately pace here, offering a slow and steady chugger that wraps itself in gauzy vocal layers and takes its sweet time reaching its climactic peak.” - Pitchfork
“I write about the things I know, but it should be interesting for other people. So I want it to be like a really great roman-a-clef, or reading your older sisters diary.” - Dan Bodan
“Soft”, the new album from Dan Bodan, is a rose-scented journey through millennial love issues, Soundcloud collage, and post-empire paranoia. Co-produced with Physical Therapy and Ville Haimala (Renaissance Man) and featuring M.E.S.H., 18+, Great Skin, Latisha Faulkner, Dena Yago, and Stadium.
Berlin based songwriter Dan Bodan was born in the wide open Canadian prairies and raised in Montreal. Reared on the city’s underground noise and experimental music scene, Bodan moved to Berlin 8 years ago. Blossoming in the city’s unique mixture of crumbling old-world european values, start-up philanthropy, sleepless techno and epic grey skies, he began writing songs to soundtrack his train rides through the city and make sense of it all.
Working together with a team of world-class producers, poets and artists, he writes songs to fit comfortably in that space between the finger and the mousepad, the bedroom and the club, the earth and the ether.
“He blows in like a sweet guardian angel over the beat, making a track so light it feels almost like daylight peeking into a dark nightclub.”
- The Fader
“The real star is his voice, which quivers as it rises and falls through each line, powerful but slightly fragile”
- Resident Advisor
Slim Twig is the name of a man, not of a band - though he has performed in many a group, some under his own moniker. Boasting a catalogue several underthe- radar releases deep, the Toronto native lays claim to a tremendously original work with his orchestrallyinflected, art rock album, A Hound At The Hem. Self-produced in the fall, 2010, Hound is a suite of narrative songs thematically inspired by Vladimir Nabokov’s Lolita. DFA is privileged to reissue this album in advance of the release of Twig’s newest works.
Upon completing AHATH in 2010, Twig struggled to find wide release for it due to its uncompromising textural onslaught and disregard for genre. This course of events set the stage for the composition and release of Sof’ Sike, a somewhat more conventional set of pop songs released on Paper Bag Records, in 2012. The title of that work refers to Twig’s own conception of Hound as the hard-psych flipside to his work of that period.
Recorded on Toronto Island in collaboration with fellow Torontonian, Louis Percival, the album features string arrangements by Owen Pallett, and other collaborators including Meg Remy (U.S. Girls), Carl Didur (Zacht Automaat), and the St. Kitts Quartet.
As a conceptalbum exploring the troubling and the taboo and themes like the transformative power of lust, AHATH can be interpreted as an echolike response to Serge Gainsbourg and JeanClaude Vannier’s Histoire De Melody Nelson. Most of all, AHATH poses the question; where next for Slim Twig, this promising and original auteur?
Initial pressing is on pink vinyl! Move quick!
Delia Gonzalez is a name immediately familiar to DFA fanatics. As the story goes, Delia transplanted from Miami to New York City in the mid-1990s, working in various dance and guerrilla theatre troupes. It was around this time that she met synth wizard Gavin Russom, beginning a series of multi-disciplinary collaborations. Their first release for the label, 2003’s El Monte, was an early demonstration of the fledgling label’s ability to bridge the gap between the avant-garde and the rapidly exploding indie rock world.
In Remembrance is the next landmark in Delia’s artistic pursuits. The project originated as a 2010 solo show of the same name at Galleria Fonti in Naples, Italy, and was further realized in 2012, with additional work, as part of the exhibition I Must Not Stop To Rest Here in Cologne, Germany. The project was further exhibited in Zurich. Both exhibitions were built around four 16mm ballet dance films, accompanied by the music composed by Gonzalez. In her words, “The film is meant to re-create the fleeting sensation of inspiration - that sacred feeling when suddenly your mind clears and you know exactly what you’re meant to create and become.”
The films were exhibited in their third incarnation at the Clocktower Gallery in New York City in 2013. Delia enlisted New York underground musicians Bryce Hackford and Alice Cohen to perform a live, electronic adaption of the original piano score. Bryce later contributed four remixes, which are included on this album. Delia explains; “When I lived in Berlin I became good friends with the artist and musician Viktor Timofeev, who kept telling me about his best friend Bryce, who he played music with. In 2012 we were all in Vienna participating in a show entitled You Are Free. There I met Bryce and I instantly loved him. In 2013 I moved to NYC temporarily and ran into him at the New Museum and he said, “we should get together and play”. I took him up on it.”
The original piano score was initially inspired by a text by Henry Miller as well as a theory by spiritual teacher George Gurdjieff, which states that “to play scales is to become more in tune with your inner self.” This coincided conceptually with the music that Delia had been making at the time.
Musically, In Remembrance finds Delia Gonzalez again straddling the lines drawn between the fine art and pop worlds. This time, instead of the cosmic, arpeggiated synths of The Days of Mars , we are presented with something even more immediately beautiful. The music is immediately soothing and hypnotic, yet it also maintains a sinister undertone. Suspense and tension are expressed in a deceptively simple fashion, providing a soundtrack both mesmerizing and melancholy for the dancers in the film. Delicate layers of piano wind around each other, reflected in the mirrored motions of the dancers, filmed in leering close-ups. The four compositions combine to create a 30 minute avant-classical suite, bringing to mind Satie, or something plucked from Italy’s iconic Cramps Records in the seventies (John Cage’s Cheap Imitation is an reasonable comparison), or perhaps an alternate score to the arthouse horror film Don’t Look Back by Nicolas Roeg.
The second disc features remixes by previously mentioned live collabator Bryce Hackford. Bryce takes Delia’s exquisite piano score and loops, stretches, and consolidates it. There’s a range of treatments at play here - some pieces are layered with gauzy left-field electronic pulses while Track IV get a 4/4 dancefloor makeover, recommended to fans of both classic Detroit techno and newer left-field stars such as Actress. Asked to briefly discuss his mission statement in creating these remixes, Bryce simply stated that he wished that his remixes “maintain the hypnotic and simple beauty of the originals while opening them up to new spaces.”.
In Remembrance will be released by DFA Records and [PIAS] Cooperative on April 28, 2015.
TracklistA1 - Delia Gonzalez (I)
“When our first album came out,” Tobin Prinz (guitar, voice) remembers, “we were awkward, miserable...” “Nervous, uncooperative” chips in Suzi Horn (bass, voice, drums), pausing just long enough for Tobin to supply the punchline - “and now look at us!”
Prinzhorn Dance School are still recognisably the same spiky Brighton-based duo whose ultra-rigorous debut cut through the excess of 2008 like a scimitar through bacon fat. But with their trademark stripped-down intensity now winningly off-set by moments of unabashed tenderness, their third album Home Economics continues and even accelerates the move away from austerity and into human warmth begun by its acclaimed 2011 predecessor Clay Class.
The starting point for the new record was the band’s “amazing” first US shows - two of their own and a triumphant showing at DFA’s 12th anniversary - in May 2013. Inspired by their American adventure, Prinzhorn Dance School brought the recording process into the heart of their everyday lives. Played and recorded on the move between different flats in Brighton and Hove, then wheeled around town on a hard-drive wrapped in a sleeping bag in a specially-adapted suitcase, Home Economics gave them an escape route from “that frustration you feel when you spend days trying to recapture the intimacy of a particular moment”, Tobin remembers. “This time we could just use the original take, so sometimes these songs are almost like field recordings”.
All the best six-track albums - The Fall’s Slates, Orange Juice’s Texas Fever - know exactly what they want to say and how they intend to say it. Home Economics shares that infectious sense of urgency. There’s not an inch of spare meat on it - from Reign’s snatched moment of optimism, through Battlefield’s restorative meeting of minds with an urban fox on a drunken walk home in the early hours, to Let Me Go’s concluding tribute to “a love that won’t rewind and will not be deleted”. Spindly yet sensuous, together and alone, exquisitely sad but somehow full of hope, Prinzhorn Dance School knit together disparate and even opposite fragments into an utterly satisfying whole.
Peter Gordon and his Love of Life Orchestra--as a new audience discovered upon hearing the FabricLive.36 compilation, a handpicked mix from LCD Soundsystem's James Murphy and Pat Mahoney that opened and closed with Gordon's "Beginning of the Heartbreak / Don't Don't"--are testament to the incredible musical innovations happening in New York City in the late 1970s. Those two compositions, underpinned with disco and gilded with noisy guitar bursts, hanging piano chords and saxophone wails, exhibit not only Gordon's kaleidoscopic vision as a musician, but his precision as a producer and composer. Featuring avant-experimentalists and downtown legends David Byrne and Arto Lindsay as well as Love of Life Orchestra cofounders Gordon and David Van Tieghem, the tracks shine a light on the work of an artist whose influence on dance music is recognizable more than three decades later.
Gordon's hefty contribution to music is given an up-close look with Love of Life Orchestra, a retrospective of the composer's work. Compiled here are the aforementioned singles and songs that show the breadth and quality of Gordon's output. "Extended Niceties" unfurls a dizzying call-and-response between blaring sax and synths, while the expansive "Roses on the Disco Floor" builds in intensity, size and tempo as it nears its epic end. "Still You" and "Beautiful Dreamer" by Justine & The Victorian Punks (a collaborative project with New York-based visual artist Colette) feature disco grooves and sweetly voiced melodies. "Iago's Escape," which begins with dramatic strings and quasi-operatic vocals, unexpectedly incorporates klezmer-influenced clarinet. "That Hat" is a quirky experiment incorporating early hip-hop beats and featuring vocals from pioneer Arthur Russell, New York Doll David Johansen and Rebecca Armstrong.
The album is rounded out with "Another Heartbreak / Don't Don't Redux," Gordon's own reworking of the seminal opening medley, which freshly reinterprets the original's sax lead and adds new synthesizer parts. Throughout this impressive catalog, harmoniously interwoven strains of jazz, rock and neoclassical, add texture and color to these wonderful songs. Love of Life Orchestra, taken as a whole, serves as ample testimony to the far-reaching scope of Gordon's musical sensibilities and a reminder of his enduring musical legacy.
LCD Soundsystem - 45:33 - 2xLP
Originally released in 2006.
This album was commissioned by Nike to listen to on an iPod while exercising.
A - 45:33
B - 45:33
C - 45:33
D - 45:33
Thank You For Stickin’ With Twig is the latest long-playing album from the artist known to the world (or at least to his mother) as Slim Twig. Coming out August 7, 2015 on DFA, you may be surprised to know that it represents the fifth album by the Toronto based songwriter / producer. Twig has released these previous records among a swath of EP’s, singles and one-offs, displaying in the process a complete disregard for genre or consistency. The evolution from Contempt!, his sample-stained 2009 debut, through to A Hound At The Hem, his symphonic tribute album to Nabokov’s Lolita (reissued by DFA in 2014), is not entirely linear, although intriguing all the same. Like so many surf-smoothed stones lining the beach shore, briefly unburied only to be discarded once deemed un-skippable, so Twig has gone about seeking the proper rock to cast at just the right angle. One can see why he extends a gratuity to those listeners who've stuck around.
In what form then, do we now find the twenty-six-year old, self-proclaimed ‘wah wah master’? His record reissued last year was completed in 2011. So one might reasonably ask, what has Twig done since? After producing two albums for U.S. Girls (U.S. Girls on Kraak in 2011, Gem in 2012), and scoring two films (Sight Unseen & We Come As Friends (winner of a Special Jury Award at Sundance, among numerous other accolades), Twig found himself in 2013 at a creative impasse re: his own songwriting. He had been through full band incarnations live and on record. They featured a cast of Toronto heavies (members of Zacht Automaat, etc...). He briefly performed Slim Twig sets as a duo, featuring multimedia artist and musician, Meg Remy (U.S. Girls). They performed sets that combined versions of Twig’s released songs with freely structured improvisations, samples, and brightly melodic, synth textures. Something in this combination of the pop-minded and the cerebrally-produced has rubbed off on the recordings found on Twig’s latest.
Thank You For Stickin’ With Twig is to date the most sonically immersive album in Twig’s discography. Where some records have focused explicitly on sample-based songwriting, while others have been completely live-recorded, the new album arrives at a perfectly produced fusion of fidelities. It hovers, glamorously caught between a cloud of obscurant, half-speed tape hiss, and the most stoned Jeff Lynne production you’ve ever heard. Twig flirts here with a variety of vibes, most often opting for a three dimensional approach whereby a warped tape aura is overlaid with colourful, laser-cut keyboard and guitar melodies. A fetishization of analogue texture is married to a digital approach. All the while, we find Twig irreverently raiding classic rock of its symbolism, sexuality, and social ambition for ulterior subversions. In this respect, TYFSWT's closest cousin may be Royal Trux's Accelerator.
Opening cut, 'Slippin Slidin’, establishes itself as a cock rock analogue to Kanye West’s similarly phallic 'On Sight', the bravura Yeezus introduction. We are welcomed by a blast of synth noise, soon followed by sexually agitated lyrics (supported by Meg Remy, whose vocals are featured prominently on much of the record) atop a deafening beat, distorted and sleazy. The immensity of the production (achieved in collaboration with co-producer Anthony Nemet and mixer Steve Chahley) represents an evolution of Twig’s approach, sustained at a fever pitch throughout the album.
'A Woman’s Touch (It’s No Coincidence)' is a song sympathizing with the perspective of the Beatles’ wives. The song production sounds like a fusion of dub and baroque pop as played by the cartoon band in the Yellow Submarine movie. Many of the songs play referential sonic games like this, discursively incorporating familiar melodies, production styles or ideas (a fuzzy ballad on wage inequality is cheekily titled ‘Textiles On Mainstreet’), only to pair them with incongruous textures or themes. 'Live In, Live On Your Era', a song encouraging an embrace of one’s own cultural circumstance, is consciously styled as the most ‘retro’ sounding cut on the album (Jimmy Page leads and all), seemingly upending the lyrical content. On and on, the jokes and meta-sonic rock commentary continue like so many Zappa-esque indulgences.
The centrepiece of the album is composed of two songs sharing the middle of the running time. 'Roll Red Roll (Song For Steubenville)', titled after the football chant of the eponymous town’s high school team, eulogizes the tragedy of the young girl who was the tabloid subject of group sexual abuse (by said football team). Its opening - the most tranquil, dreamy instrumental passage on the record - is harshly interrupted by a mass of pitch-shifted martial drums and wildly panned, distorted fuzz lines. The disturbed atmosphere composes a sonic poem, detailing a narrative through a combination of sound and oblique lyrics (‘Everyone will love / everyone will love / the way you fold / Roll Red Roll’). Side B opens with 'Fog Of Sex (N.S.I.S)'. A cinematic fusion of plastic soul and flute score-for-horror-film, it comprises TYFSWT’s funkiest recording. With voicings from both Twig and Remy, sung from the perspective of someone unwilling to commit to a single gender identity, the song makes overt the album’s subliminal motive. Instability is addressed from a disenfranchised perspective (perhaps as a metaphor for the music itself, which refuses to stabilize or stay put). Twig himself has referred to his ambition of making “a protest album as obscured by smoke” (and what kind of smoke, we wonder?). In swift combination, these two songs make good on that claim. The lyrical voices here take on an (at times) humorously proletarian tone (‘I work a shift, just up the street / cleaning semen off of seats / it’s a way for ends to meet’) that is alien in the contemporary rock landscape, dominated as it is by reheated garage and psych leftovers.
The album closes with a triumphantly grandiose cover of Serge Gainsbourg’s instrumental ‘Cannabis’ (released as a 7” single on 4/20, and deliberately echoing Twig’s first LP for DFA, which openly shared its Gainsbourgian debt). The aim is somewhat clearer now. Slim Twig’s latest modulation of voice is to re-contextualize an era of ambition in produced rock music, dislodging the hackneyed and clichéd in the process. Sonically and politically, his aim is to be a rock n’ roll subversive in an era where that claim should rightfully be made by luddite cave-people. Context is everything, and Twig’s gift may be in zeroing in on that. He collages his sounds together (here as eclectic as The Love Below, or any Beck album) in a continuum where pop criticism is always recycling through what it chooses to lend cultural currency, if only for an instant. As of now, he’s sized up rock n’ roll, and determined it seems as good as any other vessel to commandeer for his creative impulse. Power to him. Rock may be dumb as a stone, but even so, now and then it’s smart to be dumb.
A1 - Slippin' Slidin'
A2 - A Woman's Touch (It's No Coincidence)
A3 - She Stickin' With Twig
A4 - Textiles On Mainstreet
A5 - Stone Rollin' (Musical Emotion)
A6 - Roll Red Roll (Song For Steubenville)
A7 - You Got Me Goin'
B1 - Fog Of Sex (N.S.I.S)
B2 - Fadeout Killer
B3 - Trip Thru Bells
B4 - ...Out Of My Mind
B5 - Live In, Live On Your Era
B6 - Cannabis
Montreal-based electronic duo Essaie pas is comprised of Marie Davidson and Pierre Guerineau. Both are respected musicians in their own right - Marie having released two acclaimed solo records, with Pierre being best known for production work on underground Canadian musicians such as Dirty Beaches and Femminielli. Essaie pas was born on a hot summer night in 2010, releasing some ultra-limited singles which culminated in their debut LP, Nuit de noce (Teenage Menopause Records) in 2013. The mix of drawling guitars, français mumbles, and minimal electronics caught the ear of DFA Records, who booked the pair to open for Factory Floor on their first North American tour.
The origin story of -Demain est une autre nuit- begins when the band returned from their first European tour to find that they had lost both their studio space and apartment. La Brique, their studio, practice space and renowned underground music institution, had fallen victim to the city’s rapid gentrification and closed permanently. Conflicts with their wacky landlord had also left them without an apartment, leading them to return to Montreal’s winter without many prospects. They lucked into a temporary practice space during the off-hours at the offices of Le Filles Electriques, an independent interdisciplinary festival producer. This space soon became Pierre’s new studio, and Marie’s new home. The many corridors of the empty industrial building also provided a way for Marie to work out in the frigid Montreal winter nights, running “everywhere possible, listening to techno, acid, and italo disco, being mutually inspired by the space and the sounds.” About eight months later, Demain est une autre nuit (“tomorrow is another night”) was born. “This environment influenced our music,” says Pierre, “The sounds are more clear and open, the production has more depth, on a full frequency range.” Their living conditions on tour were another major influence, “Staying at different people’s places around the world for a whole year accentuates the feeling of being a stranger wherever you go, even in your own town, but also creates a feeling of being part of an international community, opposed to a scene that exists only in one city.”
Essaie pas’ music can not be tied to a specific genre It is a document of the encounter of two human beings mutually experimenting with music and sounds, and eventually falling in love while doing so. They are constantly pushing the boundaries of their comfort zone with new methods and technique, aiming to communicate that which is unspeakable.Their musical language is vibrant and varied - comparisons range from Film Soundtracks, Electronic Body Music, Disco, and Techno, with sensually-delivered lyrics exploring the themes of fantasies, obsessions, and the feeling of “The Void”. Marie explains, “The title comes from a joke we made when going to bed one morning, talking about our plans for the next evening.” Pierre adds, “Night is a place of freedom, a place where fantasies and obsessions are not tied by moral constraints. It’s also a time where the feeling of loneliness is stronger and when emotions and memories arise, whether you are facing it or running away from it. I think the tension and sense of urgency on the record comes from that dichotomy.”
Facing The Music is an excellent demonstration of this dichotomy - its throbbing electronic percussion and sawmill synths racing towards a seemingly-inevitable climax, only to disintegrate in an instant. Similar in tone, Retox begins with an air-raid siren that explodes into electronic pulses and spiralling handclaps, with Pierre’s solemnly spoken vocals countering Marie’s sensual cadence. Lead single Le port du masque is a frenetic ode to obsession, about a man being obsessed with the ghost of an impossible relationship. Pierre explains - “I already had some of the lyrics and the idea of a woman’s mantra but months later, while I was jamming a motorik beat with a TR-505 through a delay pedal, I found the perfect foundation for it.” The band’s first composition, Carcajou appears here for the third time in an entirely different incarnation - Marie’s vocals alternately yearn and taunt, diving into and out of layers of drum machines and analog synthesizers. Closing track La Chute is the band at their most Angelo Badalamenti, with mournful organ and wheezing gasps giving way to what sounds like gentle applause, but in actuality is the last frames being fed through a film projector.
GT had a productive 2015, releasing their acclaimed DFA debut Flood Dosed, which cemented support from folks ranging from punk icon Henry Rollins to Busy P of Justice’s Ed Banger Records. The band also relocated from Boston to NYC. “We felt like it was time to move closer to our favorite active bands and artists and they all just so happen to live in NYC!” This didn’t slow the pace of their live performances - between road trips to universities and DIY Festivals, they have a de-facto residency at Brooklyn’s premiere underground venue Palisades and scored opening slots for The Juan Maclean and Mission of Burma.
Eraser Stargazer was written and recorded in 6 weeks of winter isolation in upstate New York. Fans of the group will hear all of the beloved hallmarks of the Guerilla Toss sound - solid bass grooves, squealing guitars, and kitchen sink percussion. Each instrument now occupies its own part of the audio spectrum, with vocalist/poet Kassie Carlson’s spirited incantations brought into focus. Album centerpiece Grass Shack is a perfect example of this leaner, yet tougher Toss. It traverses nearly seven minutes of game- show-winner keyboard stabs, mutant funk basslines, and time signature changes - all grounded by Peter Negroponte’s virtuosic drumming. Carlson describes the themes of the song as “A deep analytical depiction of a small unit of time, with heightened senses, Ripping yourself out of bed even though it might be harsh and overwhelming. Seeing patterns in the little things that make life beautiful.” Heavy subject matter permeates the rest of the record - but that doesn’t mean it’s a downer. Lead single Diamond Girls casts Carlson as a no-wave cheerleader over instrumentation reminiscent of DFA alumni Black Dice and The Rapture, culminating in the group’s catchiest chorus yet. Album closer Doll Face On The Calico Highway is the perfect summation - angular guitars, bells, and low-end vibrations interject and decompose as quickly as they appear, until a hissing cymbal is all that remains.
Eraser Stargazer is released by DFA on March 4th, 2016. The initial pressing is limited to 1000 copies on green vinyl.
Marcus Lambkin aka Shit Robot returns with his third full length album for DFA Records, entitled What Follows. The 11-track album was conceived and recorded at Marcus’ home studio in a small town outside Stuttgart; worked on in various New York studios and then mixed over the course of 11 intense & coffee-fuelled days in DFA label mate Juan Maclean’s New Hampshire studio.
The album follows Lambkin’s previous long-players, From The Cradle To The Rave (2010) and We Got A Love (2014), which drew plaudits from the likes of The Guardian and Pitchfork, and featured Reggie Watts and James Murphy among the array of contributors.
The Dublin-born producer has enlisted the help of a stellar cast of guests for What Follows, with previous collaborators Alexis Taylor (Hot Chip) and DFA stablemates Museum of Love & Nancy Whang returning, alongside new faces Jay Green and leftfield fellow Dubliner New Jackson.
What Follows marks a departure in Lambkin’s process - a simple, but fundamental one: getting away from the computer. He said: “This record is a lot more analog than 'We Got A Love', almost all of it comes from connecting machines together and playing around.” What was your biggest influence? “Drum machines.” What began in Stuttgart was followed up on in New York, before being finished in an 11-day blitz in New Hampshire with Juan Maclean.
Lambkin: “This is the first time that I actually sat down and said, ‘I'm going to make an album now and I'm going to finish it by a specific date and time.’ I wanted to make a record that was more cohesive, that sounded like it all came from the one session. I wanted it to reflect my DJing style a bit more, less pop, less disco, more machines. There's no live bass and barring a few hi-hats, there's no live drums.
“I began in Stuttgart - simply by creating about 12 drum loops. I then synched these up to some gear and created some bass lines so I had some solid grooves to start with. Then I went to NY and spent a couple of days at Holy Ghost's studio playing around with Nick and his modular synth coming up with different sequences and sounds. I then took all this over to Transmitter Park Studios in Greenpoint and spent a few days with the wizard that is Morgan Wiley of Midnight Magic and Tippy Toes. He's one of my favourite keyboard players on the planet. Sometimes I had a specific thing I wanted him to do, but mostly I just played him some things I like and got him to jam out on what I had come up with or play some nice chords or chord progressions.
“I took all this back home and started to fool around with it and knock it into shape before sending it out for vocals. With the song I did with Museum Of Love, 'What Follows', Dennis and Pat were actually in Europe and they came by and stayed with me for a few days, so we made that one in Stuttgart over a few nights once I got the kids to bed. It was particularly fun and easy. I think the wine helped.
“Then I brought it all to Juan's World in New Hampshire where we drank a LOT of coffee and did some additional production and mixed everything. Finishing the record with Juan was a game changer for me. We worked so hard. We finished eleven songs in eleven days, no joke.”
The results are convincing - What Follows is definitely an album dedicated to dance music, but one that retains hallmarks of his previous LPs: good songs. Alexis Taylor turns in two memorable performances on lead single ‘End Of The Trail’ and album opener ‘In Love’; Museum of Love - Pat Mahoney and Dennis McNany - lend the album title track an air of something mined from the two months in between the death of Joy Division and the birth of New Order; and Nancy Whang gave such a strong vocal for ‘Lose Control’ that Lambkin and Maclean threw out the existing track and recorded the backing along with the vocal in one take, which the two producers working the machines live. Lambkin: “I had so much fun with Lose Control - and it inspired me to make so much more music. I've written 12 new tracks since finishing the record.”
Newbies Jay Green and New Jackson hit their marks too - Green - best known for fronting American punk bands Orchid and Panthers - narrates Is There No End as though it were sibling to From The Cradle To The Rave’s single Simple Things. New Jackson makes two appearances, on both Phase Out and OB-8 (Winter Version), adding oddball vocals and spaced-out Krautrock guitar arrangements.
How did the guests come about? Lambkin: “I didn't have a big plan, I just knew that I wanted to work with friends. I knew I wanted to do something with Museum Of Love again. I also knew I would do something with Nancy, I couldn't make a Shit Robot record without Nancy. Then while I was working on End Of The Trail, I could hear Alexis's voice in my head, it just seemed a perfect fit. New Jackson is my younger brother’s old room mate and I've wanted to do something with Jay ever since I made the Green Machine 12”s a few years back.”
What Follows was preceded by two 12” singles - Where Its At (Feat. Reggie Watts), backed with a killer remix from Johnny Aux - and original version of album closer OB-8.
Blue Bag Version - originally made for Rough Trade shops worldwide. 2 copies remain in the DFA store....
Factory Floor return in 2016 with 25 25, their second album and the follow up to their acclaimed 2013 self-titled debut. With their music stripped to a mesmerising dance of percussion, fragmented voice and melody, it captures the next vital stage in the evolution of one of the UK’s most restless and exploratory groups.
The dazzlingly sharp, dubbed-out acid disco of ‘Meet Me At The End’ opens 25 25 in a surge of raw momentum. Both Factory Floor’s sparsest and most overtly club-centred track to date, it sets the tone for the rest of the album. Written and recorded by Gabriel Gurnsey and Nik Colk Void in late 2015 and early 2016, it’s the product of the last three years of intensive musical activity — non-stop live performances, artistic collaborations, writing new music and reconfiguring the limits of their sound.
Inspired by playing a growing number of late night club shows, the pair’s music gradually evolved into the sound captured on their second album and in their current live incarnation: a stark, ultra-minimalist and eerily soulful dancefloor pulse, yet one that still bears Factory Floor’s unmistakable hallmarks of hypnotic repetition and jagged, punkish intensity.
That their second album is as distinct from its predecessor as their debut was from their earliest singles is unsurprising — a desire to explore, to push their own boundaries, is hardwired into Factory Floor at DNA level. Emerging in 2009 the group gained a reputation for their stunning live shows, which pummeled audiences with waves of electro-shocked rhythm. From the death-rattle of early single ‘A Wooden Box’ through their debut’s convulsive singles ‘Two Different Ways’ and ‘Fall Back’ and into 25 25’s skeletal ‘Wave’ and ‘Dial Me In’, their music has continued to forge links between industrial, post-punk and the UK’s post-acid house dance lineages.
The close friendships and collaborations they’ve established along the way attest to those connections, among them Chris Carter and Cosey Fanni Tutti of Throbbing Gristle/Chris & Cosey, Perc, Optimo, New Order and Simon Fisher Turner.
Mixed with razor precision by David Wrench (FKA twigs, Caribou), the results are all the more forceful for that newfound space. ‘Relay’ is a spooked vocal house anthem, with Void’s voice processed into a thrillingly metallic chant. ‘Wave’ and ‘Slow Listen’ are deadly, perpetual motion machine dance tracks infused with the frontier spirit of Sheffield bleep and industrial techno. And the title track itself sums up the duo in 2016; its jarring repetitions and disorienting melodic motifs are somehow classic Factory Floor, yet shot into sparse, strangely moving new spaces. “You get into your own world and use your own vision,” says Void of the process of writing 25 25. “This really is probably the most ‘me’ record that I’ve ever done.
Black Bubblegum is on black vinyl
Black Bubblegum is the newest LP from Eric Copeland, and we are not kidding when we emphasize it sounds like nothing he has done in the past. The title of the record says it all: chewy, sticky pop that doesn’t taste quite like any chewy, sticky pop you’ve had before.
Recorded at Copeland’s old practice space in South Williamsburg, Black Bubblegumcontains songs with more conventional sounds and songwriting than any of his previous releases. While there are similarities with Copeland’s earlier work in the drum patterns, major scales and vocals, Black Bubblegum moves away from his trademark psychedelic dub towards strange and fantastical pop. Wanting to take a more “hands-on” approach to these recordings, Copeland exchanged sample-driven tech and hardware for keyboards, guitars and effect pedals, creating a new sound that is oddly easy to digest despite its rejection of melody in favour of discord and dissonance. While there are similarities with Copeland’s earlier work in the drum patterns, major scales and vocals, Black Bubblegum moves away from his trademark psychedelic dub towards strange and fantastical pop; imagine Arthur Russell going into the studio with The Ramones.
For a long time, Copeland considered this collection of songs to be recordings which would never be heard. This invariably influenced certain decisions made during the creation of Black Bubblegum, blessing Copeland with the unique freedom that comes from making music never intended to be heard, let alone released.
When asked to please jot down what influenced this new album and sound, Eric replied”glam holes, glitter dreams, money troubles, apocalypse paranoia, one hit wonders, manifest destiny, my family's westward migration, body troubles (was passing kidney stones almost the entire time), LGBT disco parties, Jonathan Richman, Missing Foundation, Neil Diamond, New Orleans, poverty, getting pushed out of another Brooklyn neighbourhood... No Beach Boys, no Beatles, no Buddha... More Bad News Bears.”
Eric Copeland has been sound clashing at full volume for over twenty years, first carving out a named for himself as one third of the legendary NY-via-Providence band Black Dice. A wildly prolific solo artist, Copeland has played shit houses, party palaces and seemingly everything in between all over the world.
A long time Brooklyn, resident, Eric recently relocated to where the L Train does not run - Palma de Mallorca, Spain. While maintaining a relatively humble and low key presence in a highly competitive musical world, he has releases a prolific amount of music every year through indie labels such as L.I.E.S., Escho (Iceage), PPM (No Age), Paw Tracks (Animal Collective) and DFA.
See that man on a far off hill, working his dog while attempting to find shelter from the howling wind and driving rain? That’s the Crooked Man, the very antithesis of the modern dance music producer. He lives a simple life, dragging his world‐weary soul across the moors in an endless bid to escape the fallout from 30 years spent at the forefront of Sheffield’s electronic music scene. Once regarded as one of the Steel City’s greatest selectors, he now admits to being gripped by fear at the idea of DJing, and refuses to spend any time in nightclubs.
He may be ill at ease with the darkroom throb of 21st century clubs, but the house music the Crooked Man produces is as weighty, alien, raw and left of‐centre as anything you’d get from many a hyped young producer. He’s assisted in his studio endeavours by two other Sheffield survivors: former Clock DVA man Michael Ward, and David Lewin, once the other half of Bleep & Booster with former ABC and Vice Versa man Stephen Singleton.
The Crooked Man’s music blends wonky electronic rhythms, heavy bass and razor sharp, politically aware lyrics, often delivered by the honeyed tonsils of Pete Simpson. For proof, check out the banker‐baiting “Scum (Always Rises The Top)”, or the bittersweet social commentary of “Fools & Fanatics”. The Crooked Man may be world weary, but he’s still brimming with rage. Few could have foreseen a link between this jaded recluse and New York’s militantly forward‐looking DFA Records. But then again, the Crooked Man does have history.
Raised a farm boy, his life changed when he first heard the industrial funk and futurist electronic pop of local bands Cabaret Voltaire and the Human League. Bored of having no decent parties to go to, he became DJ Parrot and began promoting the soon to be legendary Jive Turkey events in 1985. Alongside his DJ partner Winston Hazel, he united Sheffield’s disparate dancers by joining the dots between Northern Soul, disco, hip‐hop, electro and the emerging underground dance sounds of Chicago, Detroit and New York.
In 1987, an early foray into music production accidentally created a hit record, the major label‐signed “Hustle (To The Music)” by Funky Worm. The commercial desires of a large, conservative label proved hugely frustrating, and he soon yearned to break free and head back underground. Salvation came from within Sheffield, with the launch of Warp Records. He teamed up with Cabaret Voltaire’s Richard H Kirk under the Sweet Exorcist alias, delivering the peerless “Testone” in 1990, one of the landmark records of the bleep era. The pair went on to release the first album on Warp, C.C.E.P., in 1991.
Many records under different aliases followed, for both independent and major labels, before Parrot once again found himself chart‐bound as part of eccentric Steel City trio All Seeing I. Their debut album, 1999’s Pickled Eggs & Sherbet, featured contributions from some of Sheffield’s finest, including Jarvis Cocker and The Human League’s Phil Oakey.
Since then, Parrot has kept a low profile. When not working his sheepdogs, he’s quietly produced for Roisin Murphy, Add N To (X), Richard Hawley and Toddla T, amongst others. His decision, some years back, to revisit his love of raw, bass‐heavy house music merely marks another twist in the winding path of the Crooked Man.
The CD release of DFA Records Compilation #1 came out in days of yore, when the iTunes store did not exist, when iPods were more coveted than your phone. The only way to hear the first batch of singles DFA released was to seek out the vinyl and lots of people did.
This magical mythical first group of releases from DFA included “House of Jealous Lovers” by The Rapture, “Losing My Edge” & “Give It Up” by LCD Soundsystem. It also included two very different approaches to dance music from The Juan Maclean – “By The Time I Get To Venus” and “You Can’t Have It Both Ways”, which subtly introduced the world to the vocal powers of Nancy Whang.
Black Dice also released a 12” single, throwing their noise roots behind a 4/4 screech and created one of the most unique singles in the DFA catalog with “Cone Toaster”.
The compilation was edited to fit onto one CD, more a sampler than a completist’s anthology. In hindsight, it should have been an anthology of the first 5 singles in full but the A sides had enough momentum happening to make the sampler a bonafide success for the label.
The 8.0 review from Pitchfork in 2003 helped cement the DFA label as both the leaders of a new production approach, as well as a collection of artists who could co-exist make music together and please both the discerning DJ and the indie rock enthusiasts.
In the review, the writer Nick Sylvester calls DFA “The Neptunes of the discopunk underground”, which maybe seems funny and far-fetched now, but back in 2003 was a compliment and comparison that DFA were very willing to accept. It is now 2016 and both parties continue to work and stay busy and relevant. Success being relative, this compilation represents the humble beginnings of the label and the birth / re-birth of DFA flagship artists The Rapture, The Juan Maclean, LCD Soundsystem & Black Dice.
This is the first time this title has ever been pressed to vinyl.
Juan Maclean - By The Time I Get To Venus
LCD Soundsystem - Give It Up
The Rapture - House Of Jealous Lovers
Black Dice - Cone Toaster
Juan Maclean - You Can't Have It Both Ways (Live At Warsaw April 26, 2002)
The Rapture - Silent Morning
LCD Soundsystem - Losing My Edge
Black Dice - Endless Happiness
Eric Copeland (Black Dice) returns to DFA with a brand-new set of hyper & hectic leftfield club music. Goofballs places its emphasis on playful melodies, ear worm hooks & vocals mixed with trademark machine funk rhythms that hit hard and land off-balance. Any other way would be too obvious for an artist like Eric. Perhaps he even invented a new dance genre: ‘Goofstep’. We’ll see if that one sticks…
Eric explained the creation of this new LP to us via email from his home on an island in lovely Balearic Palma Spain:
“i made it here in Palma at my studio, this is the first full record i’ve made entirely here since moving. some of this material was road tested September 2016 on tour supporting Animal Collective. This album was the result of real isolation here, countless hours, focused only on this. The whole recording & writing was a fast process. I focused most on the bass groove. I had a very minimal gear setup: 90’s drum machine, cheap bass machine and a sampler. But most important was a homemade ‘drum brain’ that Barry’s London custom made for me. Barry was in the Van Pelt Soldiers of Fortune & Oneida. That piece of gear was a big part of this record and informed the direction it took the most.”
Eric Copeland is a founding member of Black Dice as well as a prolific solo artist. Besides DFA, he has released albums on L.I.E.S., Post Present Medium & Paw Tracks.
Goofballs was mixed by Rusty Santos (who has mixed everyone from DJ Rashad to Panda Bear to Owen Pallett) and mastered by Joe Lambert. It is Eric’s third solo album for DFA Records.
3) Disco Ball
4) Bibbidi Bobbidi Boo
5) Mixer Shredder
6) Close Encounters
8) Do Whatcha Wah Wah
COMPACT DISC AVAILABLE ON DFA BANDCAMP
The latest LCD album, available in double LP, compact disc, or limited edition cassette.
1) Les Aphides
2) Futur Parlé
3) Complet Brouillé
4) Les agents des stups
5) Substance M
6) New Path
Essaie Pas always seek out fresh challenges. Emerging from Montreal’s sprawling electronic scene, the duo - Marie Davidson and Pierre Guerineau – feel completely free to express themselves, to sketch out hitherto unmapped musical regions.
“Essaie Pas has always been about exploring new territories” explains Pierre. “From the very first tapes, to the last one. We don’t want to do the same thing over and over again, – we just need to keep it exciting and to challenge ourselves. Take those experiences, open new boxes and see what happens.”
Forthcoming album ‘New Path’ takes this one step further. The duo’s fifth album to date – and second on powerhouse label DFA Records –is loosely based on Philip K. Dick’s A Scanner Darkly, a classic of dystopian science fiction.
“I read the book a long time ago, maybe 15 years ago, and it had a strong impression on me,” explains Pierre. “In our previous work we always looked to music as inspiration in our lives, but this time we felt the desire to try something different, that’s not based on ourselves but on someone else’s universe. It was going to be more conceptual, more political.”
‘New Path’ touches on personal ground, on addiction, loss, and the lingering strength of identity within late capitalism’s mass media paranoia. It pins down the central character’s destructive addiction, using this as a metaphor to explore the dichotomous rupture between our inner lives and our social environment, one that is often fed and soothed by drug abuse, social media, or any kind of dependence.
“I think it touches us on many levels,” Pierre continues. “We can talk about drug addiction issues, we can talk about the mass surveillance world we live in, but there’s also the experience of loss, of grief. I was surprised by how the book felt so modern and accurate to the time we live in right now. Dick’s visions of surveillance are the reality of social control today.”
It’s a record that continually ties itself in knots, a puzzle that is outwardly beguiling while the solutions remain inherently allusive. As Pierre points out, it’s even present in the title. “I like the fact that it sounds optimistic, but in the book it’s actually an illusion,” he explains. “This new path is actually going nowhere.”
But it’s a challenge met with humour, picking up on the wry elements of Philip K. Dick’s own writing – witness the subtle wit of songs such as ‘Complet Brouillé’, ‘Les Agents Des Stups’ or as in ‘Futur Parlé’s tripped-out lyrics, offsetting intense themes with something a little more playful.
The conceptual nature of ‘New Path’ belies the subtle personal shifts within the band. A husband and wife duo, Essaie Pas thrive on freedom, on parting to focus on outside projects in Montreal and Berlin before returning renewed, flushed with fresh inspiration.
“Both personally and for Essaie Pas it’s good that both of us have separate projects,” he explains. “Marie has been constantly touring solo for the last year. On my side I’ve been producing other people’s music (Bernardino Femminielli, Pelada or Sleazy to name a few). Collaborating in the studio with talented people with unique aesthetics and different creative processes is always refreshing as an artist.”
The complexity of the project mirrors the complexities within Essaie Pas’ career to date – forever unpredictable, their wiry, individual sound offers a tangled vision of tomorrow’s aesthetics. “I think this was the main challenge,” muses Pierre. “To adapt what we’ve been doing live thru the last 2 years, which before was always changing, and corner it, make it cohesive”.
Although the duo is continually reinventing themselves, exploring new concepts or addressing political issues, emotions stays the essential aspect of their work. This is cold music for cold times, yet beneath this lies a continual search for the humane.
As they conclude “Ultimately we hope we can reach out to people, in a compassionate way, this is what we aim for with this album."
2) 321 Contact
3) Electric Mud
In the first part of a two-volume release, Eric Copeland (Black Dice) delivers Trogg Modal Vol. 1. It has been one year since releasing Goofballs and Eric has doubled down on his unique approach to crafting dance music, pushing a sort of 'Freakbeat 4/4' agenda even further than before. Where Goofballs was the first album recorded in its entirety in Eric’s current home of Palma de Mallorca, Spain, and the result of countless hours spent working in the studio, Trogg Modal Vol. 1 is a bit less serious and more carefree, with tracks that are propelled forward by a singular, frenzied energy.
Chunky percussive layers, hard steady kicks, and tweaked loopy vocals create a playful vibe that is best described as a tropical-industrial hybrid. The final product comes together via seven succinct, self-described “rippers,” music created both deliberately and accidentally, and always with a sense of humor that bubbles over and out through the speakers. With Trogg Modal Vol. 2 out in early 2019, this two-part release pulls into focus a vivid and unfamiliar new direction for Eric Copeland.
album artwork by Bráulio Amado.
1. The Brighter The Light
2. Zone Non Linear
3. You Are My Destiny
4. Get Down (With My Love)
5. Feel Like Movin'
6. Quiet Magician
7. Pressure Danger
8. Can You Ever Really Know Somebody
9. The Brighter The Light
The Juan Maclean return to DFA with a compilation LP of 12-inch singles they’ve amassed over the past six years – re-edited, re-mastered, and ready for fans who may have missed the tracks the first time around. From the dub house sway of 2013’s “You Are My Destiny” to the high-energy stomp of this May’s “Zone Non Linear,” and featuring two never-before-released tracks, “Quiet Magician” and “Pressure Danger,” The Juan Maclean once again justify their longevity as a musical force that is more than capable of repurposing club tracks for every setting.
The Brighter The Light is put together in a way that lends itself to appreciating the sheer banging quality of the songs while simultaneously being able to dance to them in your living room. For example, take “Feel Like Movin,’” which Pitchfork called “gloriously beatific” and “pure DFA gold.” In the new remastered version, the fullness of the keys and the kicks takes over, unfurling across the listener. Deep house rhythms, sparkling synths and a certain spaciousness are what’s emphasized across the record. Gone is the slow-motion melancholy disco from their recent full-lengths – The Brighter The Light is all fierce enthusiasm and dance floor missives, perfect for those who aren’t quite ready to let go of summer.
Juan Maclean is a DJ and producer who has been a mainstay of the New York club scene, as well as maintaining a rigorous international touring schedule, since the release of his first records on DFA in 2002. Vocalist Nancy Whang is his longtime collaborator, best known as a founding member of LCD Soundsystem and a busy touring DJ. Together, the two artists have released an extensive catalogue of 12” singles and full-length albums for DFA, including 2014’s seminal In A Dream LP. The proper follow-up studio album will follow in 2020.
Black Meteoric Star was written, recorded and produced by Gavin Russom between September of 2006 and December of 2008.
This CD contains the entire 12" series.
Excluding "Dawn" the tracks have been edited for album length.
The original digital transfers of tracks 1-4 were done in Berlin.
This recording was achieved using specialized electronic circuits designed and built by Gavin Russom.
1) Death Tunnel
2) World Eater
5) Dream Catcher
7) Double Sided Mirror
10) Flat Earth
San Francisco band Cold Beat make their DFA debut with Mother, a collection of ten pop transmissions from Earth, 2020.
Wound tight with an energy that ricochets from one song into the next, Mother was made while frontperson Hannah Lew (formerly of indie trio Grass Widow) was pregnant and considering the chaotic conditions of the world she was bringing a new human into. If we consider Mother an artistic style guide through space and time, the framework Cold Beat provide is overcast by design but focused in execution; locked-in drums and synths with choir-like melodies high above it all.
“I found myself trying to describe our earth to a new human who had never been here,” says Lew. “It was a bleak year to be pregnant, but I was simultaneously filled with so much love and hope at the same time. I remember feeling a sense of wanting to show my whole range of self to this new person I was about to meet. In past albums, I sometimes held my artistic self in an ethereal place, but I found myself wanting to be very much on this earth and grounded during the creation of this record.”
The A-side of Mother presents the facts as we perceive them, while the B-side accelerates into the uncertain. Each of the first five track titles is one evocative word: the synths on “Prism” slide against the motorik guitar riffs and the plaintive saxophone on “Paper” casts the Leonard Cohen-esque melody in a melancholy shadow; “Gloves” is a real mood, all drive. Everything begins to unfurl from there. “Will it be over if there’s no sound?” Lew wonders on album standout “Double Sided Mirror,” and then ruminates, “it won’t be long until you find me in the beyond” on the more upbeat “Crimes.” The early architects of these sonic settings—Eurythmics, The Human League, Depeche Mode—act as touchstones and inspiration.
One of the most prescient things Mother teaches is that existence will not be, and has not ever been, a solitary experience. “It's really the first album where the project felt more like a band,” Lew says. “In a lot of ways, it feels like our first album.” And though four LPs (released on Dark Entries and Lew’s own label Crime On The Moon) precede this one, Mother is Cold Beat at their most concentrated and crystalline. It’s an honest, forgiving, and ultimately optimistic team effort from a band busy being born, re-born and giving life