Artist: Luca C & Brigante feat. Roisin Murphy
Release: Flash Of Light
Label: Southern Fried Records
Genre: Electronic

Filtering through apocalyptic sunbeams, the iconic voice of Róisín Murphy shimmers above Luca C & Brigante’s spacey vibrations in ‘Flash Of Light’ – the next spark of brilliance from the ever more ubiquitous duo. In the shining trio of remixes, Solomun takes it straight to the neon club, while Tale Of Us cast their ghostly spell and Blond:ish bring a dose of dreamy tech.

Luca C & Brigante are beginning to need no introduction as their heady Balearic mix of sounds continue to resonate from the beach to the club. Together, they have dropped bombs such as ‘Different Morals’ feat. Ali Love and the Robert Owens fronted ‘Tomorrow Can Wait’. Luca C is also one half of Infinity Ink, whose ‘Infinity’ has been one of the summer’s biggest records, and a new addition to Hot Natured alongside Jamie Jones, Ali Love and Lee Foss. Sebi aka Brigante has remixed the new single from Ali Love, about to drop on No.19.

Aligning with the ancient Mayan prophecy that the end of the world is due December 21st 2012, Luca C & Brigante’s new single ‘Flash Of Light’ featuring dance music icon Róisín Murphy is a call to love like there’s no tomorrow. Embedded in heavy reverb and stripped back to slow steady drums, the mood rises as Róisín’s crystalline vocals fall into rhythm and weightlessness builds with the bassline hook, pearly high-pitched strings and a burst of harmonic percussion. On remix duty, Diynamic boss Solomun works his dancefloor magic, funking up the bassline and releasing effervescent synths into the mix. Italian duos Tale Of Us & Mind Against unite and deliver a darkly luminous alternative with their hypnotic percussive groove complete with epic finale. Last but not least, fast-rising Montreal born/London based duo Blond:ish supply swirling textures in their solid moody tech workout.

   

 

Artist: The D.O.T.
Release: And That
Label: The Beats
Genre: Pop

The D.O.T. is the new musical project from Mike Skinner of The Streets and Rob Harvey of The Music. After spending the year creating music and video art online, including some of the most cinematic monthly video diaries you will ever see, Mike and Rob finally feel ready to release an album.

From the Trap infused single ‘You Never Asked’ feat Clare Maguire and Danny Brown to dance tent smash ‘And a Hero’ by way of rock led plaintive ballads such as ‘Where Did I Go’ this is the sound of two incredible musicians at the height of their craft making music out of love for it. The sole motivation when making this record was simply to make great songs with no compromise. They have made songs big enough to fill arenas.

In case you’ve been living under a rock for ten years Mike Skinner was the man behind multi award winning act The Streets who changed the face of modern british music at the beginning of the noughties and he has been pushing things forward ever since. Rob Harvey was previously of cult dance rockers The Music who built up a huge and loyal following in their ten years of making music. Rob and Mike have been friends for years but they had never made music together until a one off session was put together, they instantly clicked and The D.O.T. was formed. Mike brings his incredible production nous and dead pan backing vocals which perfectly augments Rob’s stadium sized vocals and soulful guitar. They both get very uncomfortable when you ask them what The D.O.T. stands for.

Already a huge success in Japan where their first festival appearance was greeted by 7000’s fans, the band are now turning their attentions to the UK with a tour in place for October.

   

 

Artist: U.S. Girls
Release: GEM
Label: FatCat Records
Genre: Alternative

‘GEM’ is the latest album from underground phenomenon U.S. Girls; led by Toronto’s Megan Remy and production from Slim Twig, could this be the moment U.S. Girls cross over?

As with her continuing art practice as collagist and photographer, and what might be called her photocopy-art visual aesthetic, Meghan Remy’s musical output as U.S. Girls has been dominated by her insistence on a solo working method. Maybe it’s the awareness of this once singular insistence that has surprised audiences in the past year, contrasting as it does with a burst of collaborative creativity that sparked a divergence from the U.S. Girls genesis. What started in 2010 as an apparently tentative stab at collaboration – visiting Toronto to record ‘The Island Song’ with Canadian musician Slim Twig, has now become standard operating procedure.

Starting with their split on Palmist Records, continuing with ‘U.S. Girls on Kraak’, and now extending into her latest release, Slim Twig has acted as producer, mixer and general foil. While gradually upping the pop ante, these recent releases have sought to maintain Remy’s directly emotional appeal and lead to the release of her fourth album, the appropriately titled ‘GEM’, on FatCat records. It will doubtless be remarked on for to its ‘improved’ fidelity, its focus on arrangement and production, and most of all, its emphasis on directly delivered and strikingly present vocals. But these qualities speak little to the essence of the maturation that ‘GEM’ is witness to. Present from the beginning, but vibrantly defined now, are themes that greatly contrast with the new-found sonic approachability.

Where before she appeared shrouded and even mysterious, Remy now directly addresses her take on childhood, gender inequality, sex work, and love with a distinctive blend of elegance and frankness. Merging a fascination with glam rock as interpreted by the anti-excess of Patti Smith, these new songs sparkle between the poles of an inverted take on Bolan’s Pop testosterone and the alienating abstraction of Throbbing Gristle. All in all, a rousing fourth album from Meghan Remy that’s well worth checking out.

 

Artist: Guillaume And The Coutu Dumonts
Release: Twice Around The Sun
Label: Circus Company
Genre: Electronic

Racing between the tangible warmth of the past and the thrilling unknown of the future, Guillaume Coutu Dumont comes flying back within our reach to impart his time-spanning gospel for a third album of subversive house music.

After he last graced us with the smoky hue of ‘Breaking The Fourth Wall’, Guillaume returns in a state of evolution. From the earthy rattle of the natural percussion on ‘Last Call’ to the sultry coo of the sax on ‘Constellation’, this album is undoubtedly his, and yet there’s a different kind of forward momentum at work here. It manifests itself in the primal beat and Eastern mysticism of the bass line in ‘Time Outta Joint’, or the frantic swing and scatty keys of ‘Discotic Space Capsule’.

While the thump of the drums is a familiar trope for any lover of dance music, there are cosmic incantations being whispered in the synthesisers and sound effects that elevate the dancefloor to an astral plane somewhere up above. Highly recommended.

  

 

Artist: Echotape
Release: Spinning/Awakening
Label: Amalgamated Sonic Industries
Genre: Alternative

After releasing their debut EP, Echotape return with their double A-side single ‘Awakening/Spinning’ out on October 20th. Five like-minded individuals from a village nestled in the South of England have come together to create a considered and coherent aesthetic which shines through in this double A-side.

With a driving mortorik drumbeat and bassline throughout, ‘Spinning’ was created in sunny Spain and grew through the band’s live performances. Capturing the experiences of the band the song depicts people coming together and embracing. ‘Awakening’ is an ambient lament to the day. With melancholic and subtle vocals that stretch across haunting and rumbling electronica to build an atmospheric intensity which proves why Echotape are beginning to create a stir.

The band have recently been on tour with the formidable Mumiy Troll in sold out venues across the country including the London O2 Academy Islington. This November the band will then embark on their own headline shows at The Garage in London and Concorde 2 in Brighton. Echotape’s ambitions are not limited to music alone, with art, photography and design all playing important roles in this creative project. The band’s recent video for ‘Spinning’ formed part of an installation in the Tate Modern that sought to celebrate and promote collectivism within and amongst different subcultures.

  

 

Artist: Woodkid
Release: Iron & Run Boy Run
Label: Green United Music
Genre: Alternative

‘Iron’, the title track from extraordinary video and music producer Woodkid’s debut EP is featured in the new official trailer for Fox Searchlight’s much anticipated ‘Hitchcock’ blockbuster, due out November 23rd. You can watch the trailer here.

Woodkid, aka Yoann Lemoine, was originally known for being the talented music video director behind acts such as Yelle, Moby, Mystery Jets, Katy Perry, The Shoes, Lana Del Rey, and more recently Drake for his ‘Take Care’ video. In a surprise change of direction, Woodkid turned his hand to music production and released his first EP, ‘Iron’, through Green United Music in March 2011. The EP infused epic pop with symphonic power across four original songs.

What created the buzz around the release though, was the music video which accompanied title track ‘Iron’ – a futuristic tale in black and white, directed by Yoann Lemoine himself. The music video has since been watched more than 15 million times and was greatly awarded across the board.  150 000 copies of  ‘Iron’ where sold worldwide and the release was followed by a global tour, including one very private gig atop Paris’ Eiffel Tower which was streamed live on the internet. As well as the ‘Hitchcock’ trailer, ‘Iron’ was also synchronised on the ad campaign for Ubisoft’s ‘Assassin’s Creed: Revelations‘.

Woodkid has since followed up his debut release with his second EP, ‘Run Boy Run’, again accompanied with a stunning video, which you can watch below. Woodkid’s first album ‘The Golden Age’ is due out early next year, and both Iron and Run Boy Run are available to buy now.

Woodkid – Run Boy Run (Official Video HD) from WOODKID on Vimeo.