Wednesday, September 2, 2009

September 7th 2009 Releases

Unconfirmed Reports
Hand Held Recordings

(HHR 001)

"Excellent" - Simon Reynolds, Blissblog

"…an awesome carousel of cascading beats…a massive album" - Flux Magazine

"Unconfirmed Reports is especially appealing for Kirk's refusal to settle into a genre. It traverses myriad stylistic spaces, from ambient to post-rock, with hip hop, dubstep, funk and industrial inflections, but the result is much more than the sum of its parts. Much like the city, Kirk's object of abject fascination, this music is always in transition, shifting kaleidoscopically. Above all, it's a memorable exercise in uneasy listening, capturing the unmistakable ambience of urban disquiet."

"edgy, crackling, downbeat album….excellent blend of styles. This is great stuff, plotting an original path through difficult territory, emerging unscathed" - The Point

"…. this is a hell of an addictive listen and is easily the best album I've heard from a new artist this year" - (USA)

'Dark, brooding, occasionally menacing, yet deeply seductive; the second full-length release from AKATOMBO, 'Unconfirmed Reports', is an in-depth, electronic-based audio/visual travelogue of late autumn through to early spring, as seen through the warts-and-all tinted-spectacles of Hiroshima-based artist & ex-pat Scotsman, Paul Thomsen Kirk. 'Unconfirmed Reports', carries on the recurrent, underlying themes of urban alienation & social exclusion first presented on the critically acclaimed debut Akatombo release, 'Trace Elements', which was released on Colin (Wire) Newman`s Swim label. From skimming the surface, to trawling the dank underbelly; the daily minutiae of life in a large Japanese city is duly presented in all its garish hues and faded glories. Accessing all areas, and dispelling numerous urban myths along the way, 'Unconfirmed Reports', allows you, the willfully willing participant, the perfect opportunity to immerse yourself completely in a thoroughly enticing, 360-degree, technicolour, sonic adventure. The new album is housed in a special over-sized, elaborately printed envelope containing; two large photographic prints, two random newspaper cuttings (each copy has different cuttings), the cd, & also a bonus 3 track dvd-r of promo videos; two of the videos have been shown at over 20 film festivals in 12 different countries, (incl. U.S., Canada, France, Poland, Switzerland, Germany, Holland, Greece, UK, Spain & Japan), in the past 2 years to great critical acclaim. Each album is hand-numbered.'

Mary Anne Hobbs featured a 15 minute mix by Paul T. Kirk aka Akatombo on her BBC Radio 1 show on the 19th August, listen to the mix here:

Akatombo-MAHobbsmix by bakedgoods

A. Space Cadet
AA. Junk Yard

Tectonic 12"
(TEC 031)

'Dubstep has definitely moved much further into the lime light since Random Trio's Cyrus released his stone cold debut LP for Tectonic in 2007, appropriately titled 'From The Shadows'. The hypnotic beats, pounding subs and delicate atomospherics meld together resulting in a trademark style that is simultaneously powerful and subtle. One of the LP tracks 'Indian Stomp' even made it to the silver screen, featuring in both the film and the official soundtrack for blockbuster 'Children Of Men' (Universal Pictures) which depicts a dark dystopian future in the UK. Returning now for the first time since 2007 Cyrus drops a heavily weighted plate on Tectonic with two minimal stepper riddims 'Space Cadet' and 'Junk Yard'. 'Space Cadet' takes the stripped down minimal approach to an extreme. Once the mechanical other worldly atmospherics and fizzing hi hats drift away the beat comes rolling in - rock solid and uncomprimising. Kick, hat, snare - and, of course - stomach shaking ankle flapping subs that lay low down and heavy (you might not even hear them if your system doesn't carry the weight...) to provide a sound system riddim that will rattle your rib cage. This is not home listening music, this is earth shaking, bowel moving music to play loud through a speaker stack. Drop it and watch the pavement shake around you! 'Junk Yard' continues the theme of Cyrus's highly developed, precision drum and sub production skills along with an attention to detail that ensures not a single hair or hi-hat dare be out of place. Minimalism only works when you pay close attention to detail and once again - everything here is perfectly executed as he continues the intergalactic theme set by 'Space Cadet'. If this track does represent a junk yard of sorts then it plays soundtrack to Skywalker, Solo and Leia fleeing the Death Star via the cosmic garbage shoot - the relentless double time bassline providing urgency to escape while strange atompspheric stabs emerge like the alien beasts lurking just beneath the surface. Top quality bass weight.'

Concrete Streets / ZOMBY Remix
Keysound 12"
(LDN 012)

'Next up is Zomby's remix of my Concrete Streets, with the Durrty Goodz vocal and the unreleased instrumental on the flip. You can hear them all in the YouTube video above.

The art, shot by Keysound friend Simon is the place in Waltham Forest E11 where Goodz got his hair cut as a kid. Don't forget Goodz merks this track in the Dusk and Blackdown album promo video for Margins Music too' :

Pixel Rainbow Sequence / PEVERELIST Remix
Reduction 12"
(RDCTN 003)

"Bristol's Hyetal brings retro, chiptune-inspired aesthetics to dubstep's beat structures on 'Pixel Rainbow Sequence', which seem to hover in place over a spring-load step-slide rhythm. They render everything a brittle staccato, taking advantage of the bright attack of sounds that might otherwise seem paltry if they stuck around too long. Aside from the hometown connection, Peverelist makes a fitting choice of remixer, given his own pointed approach on so many records. He takes an insistent one-note arpeggio from the original and folds everything else around it, weaving a weird, polyrhythmic basketry out of spindly wires and percussive hits the texture of broken straw. A strange martial motif tries to establish its presence but never quite establishes control as, again and again, it's sucked into the thicket of splintering beats and sime warble. Most radical of all is the total absence of a perceptible downbeat - it's as though Peverelist has taken dubstep's rhythmic blueprint and, with one deft fold, turned the whole structure on its ear. "
Philip Sherburne - Critical Beats, The Wire