Morning gang! We had yesterday off for Canada’s [Insert Province Name] Day, but as of last week, I’m officially on summer vacation, a concept I haven’t really been familiar with since Grade 10 or thereabouts. As luck would have it, this is being posted while I’m actually down in Seattle, watching my beloved and disappointingly inept Blue Jays take on the equally inept (but less disappointing) Mariners with my family. This surplus of time has prompted me to come up with a list of quick August projects: paw through the backlog of issues of Locus accruing on my desk, finally play System Shock 2, revisit some of last year’s more understated records (really want to put more work in on the Mentallo LP), and catch up on general science fiction reading, new and old. Hopefully this also means taking care of my ID:UD duties on a more human schedule: no frantic 3am deadline crunches, at least ’til September. Let’s get it going!
Gary Numan, “I Am Dust”
Hot diggity damn. Like most of our North American readers, we’re as jacked as can be about synth god and patron saint of ID:UD Gary Numan’s upcoming tour and new LP Splinter. Between the spidery font and the Wilkins-Micawber-on-a-bad-day look that the cover art features, we might have initially hazarded that Uncle Gary might have been opting for a more sedate or even (shudder) steampunk-influenced sound. We needn’t have worried: “I Am Dust” is classic renaissance Numan, with great production tics filling in the gaps between the chuggy guitars and high, keening vocals (though with a more melodic tint matched to pads we haven’t heard much of since the late 80s).
Liebknecht, “Overwrite v.1”
Everything we’ve heard from the sessions for Daniel Myer’s new Architect album has been crazy promising, and it sounds as though the follow-up to 2010’s stellar Consume Adapt Create is pretty much in the can. While you can expect a full review of that in these pages as soon as possible, everyone knows that Myer gathers no moss, and has been fleshing out his new side project Liebknecht, trying to get a feel for its sound. The Liebknecht remix of Architect has become one of my top jams of 2013, in or out of the club, and so the release of this demo, featuring more hypnotic, pinched-off basslines and heaty atmospheres has me rubbing my palms with anticipation.
Zex Model, “Neurotoxin”
More straight-forward and grimy as hell electro-industrial from Russia’s Zex Model. Paul Von Aphid’s new project’s debut EP showed promise, and it looks as though he plans to consolidate that with a full LP. Will definitely keep our ears open!
SPC ECO, “Delusional Waste”
I’ve been a big fan of Dean Garcia’s post-Curve project SPC ECO, featuring his daughter Rose on vocals, for a few years now. Starting as almost almost pure shoegaze, the band’s recently been pushed in a vaguely more electronic direction, with Garcia’s legendary producer chops proving just as deft even when there’s nary a guitar to be found. This track (and the digital maxi it’s pulled from) keeps the strange synthpop undercurrent 2013 seems to have going strong.
Neon Shudder, “Damage Patterns”
I’ve been enjoying spinning this Philly outfit’s new by-donation EP while playing the aforementioned System Shock 2. Too drum-heavy to be ambient, too downtempo to be outrun, Vestigial Data still brings some chill fun.
Corvx de Timor, “Memento Mori”
Another moody one-off from Ben Arp, this one with a bit of neoclassical flavour and dedicated to the memory of a departed loved feline. Rest easy, Azrael. Vancouver folk: consider giving the good people at VOKRA (Intern Tobey’s old digs) some spare cash if you can, or even give one of their kitties a forever home.