Morning, friends! Hope everyone was as glued to the edge of their seats watching representatives from far reaching lands and kingdoms in extravagant costumes battle for supremacy while viewers made snide comments on Twitter about how naff the whole thing is. We are, of course, talking about Eurovision. And wouldn’t you know, it was surprisingly pertinent to Our Thing this year, thanks to Iceland’s entry which stood out like a sore thumb in Europe’s annual celebration of pageantry and needless glissando. Stay tuned for more on that, while we get things rolling with this week’s Tracks.
Hot on the heels of “Fever Rift” comes the latest single from Real Cardinal. Real spoke with us recently about the new series of Comaduster singles he’s working on releasing at a steady clip, but you don’t need to delve deep into process and compositional theory to appreciate the impossible heavy pillars of bass built on this track, which never push melodies or the vocals of Mari Kattman (of Helix) out of the frame. Great stuff, as we’ve of course come to expect.
Moaan Exis, “Witness”
Absolutely savage new cut from France’s Moaan Exis, lifted from new album Postmodern Therapy due next month from Audiotrauma. Like a lot of their labelmates, the duo of Mathieu Caudron and Xavier Guionie aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty, layering in gritty distortion over their atmospheric soundscapes for impact. Y’all should probably check out the unsettling video for the track while you’re at it, it’s as hypnotic and captivating as it is profoundly unnerving. Officially adding this record to the “we’re excited to check this out” docket.
Lingua Ignota, “Butcher of the World”
If you didn’t hear us talking about it on the podcast last year, Kristin Hayter, aka Lingua Ignota’s All Bitches Die and the performances we saw from it were amongst the most difficult and beautiful musical experiences we’ve had in recent memory. New album Caligula doesn’t sound like it’s backing down from that, with “Butcher of the World”‘s orchestral backing, waves of distortion and static and Hayter’s stunning vocals, which range from full-on screams to beautiful, operatic anguish. Striking, heart-rending music from one of the most singular artists we’ve heard in years.
Second Still, “New Violet”
We enjoyed California trio Second Still’s 2018 Equals EP for its ability to throw some light and deft touches into the dour post-punk template. New LP Violent Phase looks to be carrying that canny integration of outside sources further, if this and other lead track “Double Negative” are any indication. Unpredictable and exciting instrumentation tics keep you guessing while the groove remains.
Hex Wolves, “Cautious At First Sight”
Another solid EP of moody techno/IDM/EBM comes our way from LA’s Hex Wolves. Return To The Shadow Realm is true to its title, with plenty of smudgy atmospherics woven between beats, or as on this number, baked into them. The scrapy textures which make up the loping rhythm of this number have an unnerving but still catchy gurgling sense of harmony to them. Solid, effecting stuff from a producer who’s sound design always yields rewards.
Nostromo, “Terrain Ahead”
Do y’all remember Nostromo, the collab between techno-EBM experts SARIN and Unhuman? Turns out they’re back and fixing to release some new fire on aufnahme + wiedergabe in a few short weeks. We’ll admit that the glut of generic techno-body tracks over the last two years has taken some of the shine off the genre for us, but hearing two artists who are genuinely good at it and can bring the dancefloor muscle and energy to get over with us remains a pleasure. Be fixing to drop this one in a few DJ sets in all likelihood.