"In one sense the album is quite cinematic,” wrote Wordcolour in the press notes for ‘The trees were buzzing, and the grass.’, his LP released on Houndsooth in June. “Not in the sense that it is big or epic, but in the way it is structured. At times the music literally cuts like a camera – moving the listener from one acoustic environment to another. It indulges a fascination with the hyper-real world of Foley and film sound effects, natural ambiences, and Spielbergian film music. It almost feels like an album about film.”
Alchemising hyper detailed, ASMR-like sound design and spoken samples with stuttering club percussion and glittering melodies, the album is a masterclass in playfully abstract electronic music that will delight fans of everyone from Minor Science and Loraine James to Matmos and Squarepusher. From the absorbingly odd ambience of ‘I am sixty years old and trying salvia for the first time’ to the euphoric breaks n’ keys of ‘Babble’, the record simultaneously conjures late night journeys down YouTube wormholes, and the unbridled energy of classic UK rave music, rendered in lucid HD.
There’s a similarly cinematic streak to Wordcolour’s Selections, which spotlight everything from polyrhythmic club music and microtonal synth experiments to singeli jungle and an outrageous rave edit of All Saints ‘Pure Shores’. Dive in below.
Listen to and buy ‘The trees were buzzing, and the grass.’ via Bandcamp.
“I first came across pq when I heard his EP ‘ball trip’ on the Spooky Shit label - a collection of mind-bending club experiments in 3 time. I'm really happy to see him find a new home on Lapsus Records, and delve deeper into his world of twisting, turning polyrhythmic club cuts.”
“I'm really in love with this beautiful EP from Emma-Kate Matthews. Full of twinkling metal and ASMR percussion, this record weaves playfully in and out of UK club sounds, luscious synths, and more experimental moments. Somewhere between Eli Keszler, Burnt Friedman and DJ Python.”
“This is a great split A by Insta:mental and dBridge, but I particularly love this tune. So paired back and simple - a gut-shaking sub, buoyant claps, and just-pretty-enough synth melodies that fall just shy of being cheesy. End of the night stuff.”
“Two tracks of psychedelic, microtonal synth textures which work as either minimalist sketches or transitional club tools. These really get inside my head - I find them soothing and unsettling in equal measure. For fans of Barker, Aleksi Perälä, Second Woman…”
“No one does drums quite like Ibunshi. Dark, atmospheric d&b that sounds like it's been made by throwing various household objects at the side of a shipping container.”
“Earlier this year I discovered, and totally fell in love with, the 2016 self-titled album from Steve Lehman's group Sélébéyone. The first track here absolutely blew me away when I first heard it; it's not quite like anything else I know. An insistent, wonky, atonal piano line is set against intense MCing from HPrizm and nervous improvisations from Lehman himself. I also just discovered that Sélébéyone has a new album out later this month, so I'm super excited to check it.”
“As a producer, I've always felt a real kinship with the way Matmos approach music making, and I'm obsessed with this new album. In what must have been a dream situation for the duo, they were given access to the entire recorded archive of Polish avant-garde composer Bogusław Schaeffer. The resulting record begins as playful, colourful, cut-up fun, whilst the last two tracks of the LP close out on something that could soundtrack a remake of 2001: A Space Odyssey. I saw them do it live and it was just stunning.”
“If you've seen me DJ at all in the last six months you've probably heard me play this. Stripped back playful perc with an infectious vocal from MC Palakata and a bassline that is... Pure. Liquid.”
“If you've seen me DJ in the last six months you've also definitely heard me play this. I don't care what the vibe is, I don't care what bpm we're at, and I don't care what time my set is. I'm charging up to 160, I'm playing this, and you're coming with me. Stripe n co must be stopped!”
“I've put this track in lists and mixes before but it bears repeating. Further proof of what can be done with just some breaks and the right sample. Ghostly voices and guitars tease away in the first half over breakcore cutup madness. Then two thirds of the way through the sample opens up and reveals itself as a pitched up version of something we all know. A brief moment, but it's gorgeous. Pure magic.”