Gold Panda - “Vanilla Minus”
Kids and Explosions - “Use Your Words”
Month in Review: February
Welcome to EMAC’s fourteenth monthly recap, where I will look at some of the most notable moments in electronic music and hip hop throughout the months of February 2014. Titles of releases which I recommend highly will appear in bold.
Cibo Matto - Hotel Valentine
Celebrating two decades as household names within the shibuya-kei movement, Cibo Matto returns with their first record in fifteen years. It does not cover wildly new territory, but it is reliably catchy and quirky.
Dean Blunt - Skin Fade
Released to little fanfare, Dean Blunt’s Skin Fade is basically a pit stop, but it nevertheless effectively distorts pop conventions into subtly unsettling form.
Goliad - Inevitability
Following the intensely personal statement of Goliad’s debut album, I Take Up Too Much Space, Inevitability is less high-concept, but it delves deeper into the producer’s deeply inventive sampling technique, integrating vocals for a result that materializes the term “plunderpop.” Although the introduction of vocals shows room for development, the production is at its most innovative, and the final product is Goliad’s most original.
Illum Sphere - Ghosts of Then and Now
It is at times noticeably derivative of late-period Flying Lotus, but Illum Sphere’s debut album elevates itself above most FlyLo-imitators with its commitment to its sound design and compositional momentum.
Kangding Ray - Solens Arc
Kangding Ray continues to establish himself as a reliable purveyor of bleak, richly textured techno on his latest LP.
Mondkopf - Hadès
Whether pummeling techno beats or dismal drones, Mondkopf’s Hadès is supremely confident in what it offers.
Neneh Cherry - Blank Project
Neneh Cherry has sustained a long career of versatility, and that is embodied in her latest LP. With the synthesis of earthy and electronic tones Four Tet provides as a backbone, Neneh anchors her range with vocals that refuse to be passive.
Patten - ESTOILE NAIANT
Patten’s first full-length release for Warp Records is a hyper-stimulating interpretation of IDM, sometimes to the point of sacrificing memorability beyond its density. However, what it lacks in discipline it compensates by engaging fully in its sheer exposure of color.
Thug Entrancer - Death After Life
Thug Entrancer’s brand of retrofuturism, comprised by alien synthesizer arpeggios and primitive percussion, is generally free of surprises yet always dependable.
Young Fathers - Dead
Genre-bending hip hop group Young Fathers have yet to reach the level of coherence necessary to exceptionally carry out their amalgamation of ideas, but their originality and heart keeps Dead interesting.
Saint Pepsi - Gin City
Sample plunderer Saint Pepsi is working less within the realm of hazy disco nostalgia on Gin City, tapping into higher fidelity and a wider sonic palette.
A Winged Victory for the Sullen - “Atomos VII”
Chimurenga Renaissance - “The B.A.D. is So Good”
Clark - “Superscope”
Evian Christ - “Waterfall”
Four Tet + Terror Danjah - “Killer”
Giganta - “Is Ma Beat”Goliad - “TURN UP”
Kelela - “The High” (prod. Gifted & Blessed)
Kendrick Lamar - “m.A.A.d city (James Blake Harmonimix)”
Little Dragon - “Klapp Klapp”
Millie & Andrea - “Stage 2”
Onra - “Gonna Make You Mine”Patten - “Agen”
Saint Pepsi - “Walking Talking”
Scuba - “Cyanide”
Teebs - “View Point”
Todd Osborn - “5thep”
Todd Terje - “Delorean Dynamite”
Oneohtrix Point Never - “Music for Steamed Rocks”