A compilation was born after four albums, with two years between it and the last album they made. Hidden Place have since long found their niche in synth-pop, minimal wave and new wave. Before they had more experimental influences that soared through a wondrous landscape, but now they channel it down to a common denominator – focusing their darndest on combining Italian geography and language to make something of their own. It seems like it’s even more noticeable now how they sneak in more versions that haven’t been released earlier, or if they have been – the focus have been lying more with the, by now “international” language – English. They have a treasure trove ready to be dug out and it has partly been done with the first compilation, released on the UK-based label Peripheral Minimal. It was named “Retrospettiva: 2004 – 2014“, which as it’s name portrays, holds a rather keen look through nostalgic lenses on the past, mainly unlocking already existing tracks and putting them in a new context – a date where they first were contemplated.
Now after dozen months, Peripheral Minimal still holds the torch that lights the beacon upon where the follow-up will be presented. Peripheral has the key that opens up and gives a summary to the rather underestimated legacy that Hidden Place have brought with them. Whether or not you prefer to listen to them, there’s something which hits the right spot when you listen to their music. Even though it sometimes fades into a more commercial landscape along the road, there’s something well-thought out between their layers of music. I’m not sure if you can pin it down exactly when listening to it, but you’ll probably know what I am talking about. So the second compilation and the follow-up to the first one is now closing in. It carries the exact same title but now we’re at “Retrospettiva Vol. 2“. Let’s hope there’s a gem or two hidden beneath the rugged stone, and that you’ll get some unheard tracks you can listen to in your headphones or on your stereo.
Repartiseraren have gotten hold of a track from this forthcoming compilation. There’s a clear difference to much of their material which could be heard on the first volume, even though you’ll know it’s them – a polished but rough environment steps in and carries everything – leaving a burden on your shoulders. Their language of choice should certainly be Italian, because for someone that doesn’t understand the language, it actually sounds a lot less cheesy. A certain uplifting emotion grabs a hold of you when you listen, but when you listen to this track – melancholia knocks on the door. For your listening pleasure you’ll receive the track “Gioco Cromatico (V. 2)“, taken directly from “Retrospettiva Vol. 2“, exclusively on here and nowhere else. Stream it directly and feel an uncertain breeze flow through you. Artwork was created by Oleg Galay.
Rhodes is the basis of this project. A duo consisting of Kriistal Ann and Toxic Razor, two nick-names appropriated by Anna Michailidou and a furtherly unknown figure whose real name I haven’t found out about. For the solo-project that is called Kriistal Ann, Anna Michailidou created a release last year for release on Werkstatt Recordings, titled “Refraction” – a solo-project based in and out of goth mixed with dark-wave – showing a whole other side of herself. Even though she’s intimately connected with Paradox Obscur, the difference lies in the approach that the duo has in comparison with her own project. The aforementioned project is based out of dark minimal synths with a cold-wave atmosphere, content at leaving the listener in a dismayed landscape of sound – harnessing a deep inner-feeling – charged with an ambulation of emotional lyrical content. A rather bleak introductory to a sound they’ve been working on since releasing a few tracks here and there, some on their own Soundcloud and one for the Parisian podcast-mixes courtesy of M N M L. After a while, before they even had announced the release of their self-titled debut, I got introduced to their sound for real by Jason of Peripheral Minimal.
We decided for me to be releasing a track each day, showcasing their sound to a broader audience. So I started to put up a track after another, until I hit the limit of five tracks that I decided would be appropriate. These five tracks, namely “Scourge“, “Creatures“, “Dirty Parades“, “Grieving Days” and “Conviction” – in no particular order. It got warmly received by those interested in their sound since before and those that hadn’t really been introduced to their sound yet. Everyone got a chance to listen to all these tracks, on a day-to-day basis – to form their opinion and/or interest for their self-titled release – by listening to exclusive premieres of tracks from that release. Now that these days have already went by, you get another chance to listen to these tracks, since they’re up indefinitely. Prepare yourself for a wonderfully cold receipt of what can be done with an erratic sound-scape fueled by the desperate and depressive content that Paradox Obscur shows with their passion for music, accompanied by analogue equipment for the best sound. The artwork for the cover was designed by Frantz Schlusselhuber, displaying the elephant man and various other individuals whom you might or might not recognize. However, you should be listening to these five exclusive tracks on Repartiseraren, because each track has its own character. The release will be put out on Peripheral Minimal in the beginning of May. Stream all tracks down below.
The Anxiety Of Love, made up by former members of Red Lorry Yellow Lorry, Certain General, Joan Of Arc Family, Treehouses and other bands – have just put up their discography for you to stream. From their first release “One E.P.“, which was released in 2012. To their latest release “The Anxiety Of Hate E.P.“. From having their releases put out by the notable Berlinian label aufnahme + wiedergabe, to having their releases put out by their own independent label The Essence Of Soul Limited, Vocoder Tapes and Peripheral Minimal. They’re actually one of the few bands that carry the earlier wide-spread tradition of no-wave into a whole other world, together with their rather long and drone-inspired songs plus releases, to the shorter versions riddled with what Michael B. Wood (the singer) of the band calls; “meth rock“. A most noticeable influence however, would be the looming cold wave atmospheres that knit their no-wave tighter to the most unbearable point of listening, but that is the point of what they are. Another interesting thing about them letting their discography be streamed properly, is the fact that the earlier unreleased tracks that are of compilation-variety, have been put up as samples to be listened to under the collective name of: “So Lonely In Your Crowd“. Before and after they got hinged with different labels, they actually self-released a couple of releases.
The “<<Nausea Libido>>“-single is a reminder of how great their self-released tracks got play-time through their D.I.Y-ethics, but also the live-document “soap in the blood” which features tracks from their live-performances. Another release that is probably seeing the day of light on a physical edition of vinyls, is the release that originally was scheduled for Tujunga Flats, but unfortunately never happened. This release, “The Swarm.“, is a nice reminder of how you can make it without the help of both major and independent labels – unless you’re making it darn sure to do it on your own. A lot of their music is unique in different kinds of ways, never leaving the ultimate darkness in which they brood, staying true to their core principles – makes for a different kind of listening experience – and it shines through. Their music is not that easy to categorize at best, but can be put into the goth rock, meth rock, cold-wave and no-wave, pocket. Now when they’ve been kind enough to put up their whole discography for your listening pleasure, digitally of course, wouldn’t you mind doing them a service and stream it until you drop? Because I know that I would. There are a lot of things to discover and you can do that right now. Stream their whole discography here on Repartiseraren.
British label Peripheral Minimal is in the process of releasing a retrospective compilation of tracks, with the Italian electro/new-wave group Hidden Place. Having released four albums in total, from 2005-2012, this retrospective album will feature three songs from each of their albums, plus an unreleased remix. As they gradually moved on from their most experimental first album “Weather Station“, they put out a new album each two years that passed, in the end making it three years – with their latest album up to date; “Novecento“. Being on labels like Hellektroempire, to Twilight Records, Calembour Records and now finally, with Peripheral Minimal, very soon. Approaching a colder picturesque landscape of sound with their overlaying electro, as the more pop-induced new-wave sound made the melodies all the more danceable. A fresh new sound had been developed through the years, as the vocals of Sara Lux, a member of the group – became more and more distant from the sound itself. Making it a rather accomplished combination between vocals and the sounds of Fabio V., Antonio L. and Giampiero Di B. Not really my cup of tea when it comes to a lot of their songs, but there is something that has been captured amidst the energetic synth-pop with the overtones of a different mixture, embellished by the nature of different electronic genres.
The retrospective album that is coming out on Peripheral Minimal before April is over, is titled “Retrospettiva: 2004 – 2014” and captures tracks from their years when they were the most active, to the more sullen years of being unproductive. Harnessing a lot of tracks, being forgetful about others. This compilation does cover the perspective of their active years, but it also essentially takes out the best of the songs that has been put out there in between these years. The rather interesting artwork was made by Oleg Galay of Other Voices Records. So I can say to you that Repartiseraren will give you the time of your day, letting you listen to and stream the track “Picture Hall”, originally featured on their album “Fantasia Meccanica” – but now also brought to and from the forthcoming compilation. Click play and enjoy their uncanny vision, the masquerading electronic synthesizers, the hectic tempo delivered by the melodious content of the fixated drums in tune with the synths.
An unorthodox blend of minimal wave and synth-wave was unearthed in Dublin, Ireland. KuBo is a fairly new duo, consisting of Aidan Casserly and PolyDROID (Brian O’Malley) – whom have also been involved with the project Empire State Human. Their intentions can be seen and their influences are treading from the cheesyness of early synth-pop, to the magnificent atmosphere of minimal synth itself. Generally combining ethereal vocals with slowly-paced synthetic rhythms. Covering different topics that can be construed of humanity itself and the more cybernetic aspirations of mankind. From the harshness of the brutality that can be construed with these topics, to a more feel-good emotion with hedonism to the core. What differentiates them from their counterparts or influences is their heavy focus on the rhythms, but also the fact that they stay within the minimalistic, and an almost cold-wave-ish deliverance – with an emphasize on that word for the vocals themselves, but also the general mood that is conveyed. So in collaboration with Peripheral Minimal, you can stay assured that Invisible Guy would be giving you something to listen to. I’m proud to be giving you the two tracks from KuBo’s forthcoming release “This Desolation“, on Peripheral Minimal. These two tracks are “This Desolation” from the A-side and “Das Klub” from the B-side. Which you can stream exclusively down below. If you like it, have an eye out for Peripheral Minimal, because it’s coming out in the near future. Be sure to buy it if you like it, so you can support KuBo and Peripheral Minimal.
The Anxiety Of Love, oh how they are undiscovered. They might wish to remain that way, but in this shrouded cloud of mystery – you find a great dose of melancholy, but on a whole other level. They are compromised of Michael, who’s got a history of being in different interesting bands, like Joan Of Arc Family – for example. He’s also the singer of this band, alongside Paul who play the guitar have been in Red Lorry Yellow Lorry, Sailor on the bass guitar is in Clockwork Alters, and Solomon is their household drum-machine. Together with the occasional visit of Tobias, who seem to be floating around in a void. Every single one of these members have been involved in one band or another. They’ve earlier released a bunch of songs by themselves, but more recently, they’ve gotten a 7¨ released by Tujunga Flats, and will have another 7¨ out on Peripheral Minimal later on in Autumn. With that said, they’ve recently mailed out their self-released CDr bootleg titled “Soap In The Blood“. So one can say that they’ve got a lot going for them right now. I would consider them to be unique in many ways, which is why I’m even remotely interested in them in the first place. Michael B. Wood of the band contacted me and all we ended up with was this beautifully melancholic interview. He talks about life-changing incidents, the band itself, how they cope with their melancholy, what their melancholy means, the importance of silence, how alike Lebanon Hanover and they are – and much more. Read and weep.
Peripheral Minimal is a sub-label to Peripheral Records, which is a label based out of Britain. In a short period of time, Jason B Bernard have garnered a lot of attention. Maybe not on the basis of blogs writing about it, but he’s gotten a lot of followers for his rather newly created sub-label. The first release was Replicanti, a synth-wave group based out of San Fransisco, whom released their first EP á la four tracks on Peripheral Minimal. Main focus is on minimal synth and cold wave, which makes it even more interesting. So, as the 7¨ split between Xiu and Spatial Relation was announced to be released sometime now in Fall, it wasn’t enough for me. Therefore, in an attempt to collaborate, Invisible Guy and Peripheral Minimal will give you an exclusive preview of both the tracks that will be featured on this release. It will mark the second release on this label. But, I also had some time left on my hands to ask the label-boss Jason Bernard a couple of questions regarding his first release, the purpose of the label and the second release. Plus some other question that magically happened to be thrown in. You can stream and listen to previews of Xiu’s “Highgate” track and Spatial Relation’s “Mystery Of Chance” track, down below.
I know that Peripheral Minimal is a sub-label for Peripheral Records. But why did you want to branch out and focus on minimal synth and coldwave, too?
– Well ultimately it was like returning or going home, if you like, to my original love of Synthpop or Future Pop as it was known when I was younger, anything from Depeche Mode to Fad Gadget via Cabaret Voltaire and The Human League! Plus it’s re-emergence in recent years made me decide to ‘test the waters’, and I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the quality of the latest crop of Synth acts, basically reinterpreting the classic late 70s / early 80s sound.
Since it’s a sub-label, do you go by things the same way when releasing or are there more differences than a particular focus on these two genres?
– I don’t think there’s much difference in the way I operate either label, perhaps just the way in which I advertise releases to different markets. Marketing is ultimately the hardest part to get right!
Your first release was “Electric Mistress” by the San Fransisco synthwave act Replicanti. Why did you choose to make that one your first one and how did you go by before you released it?
– I was initially approached by Replicanti as he had an E.P. ready and was looking for a new label via a ‘tip-off’ from a friend! I really liked what I heard and decided to give it a chance, it seemed like the perfect marriage between early EBM and Synthwave. I haven’t been disappointed.
Do you have any acts that you’re going to sign in the near future, since Xiu and Spatial Relation will be releasing their forthcoming split on your label?
– There are a few releases in the pipeline, a 7″ by Irish duo ‘KuBo’ and another 7″ by ‘Ferdinand Carclash’. There are also some tentative deals on the way, but I’m keeping that a secret for now!
How did you go by when you decided you wanted to release those two on a 7¨?
– I’d heard both acts separately and thought that the two together might make a fantastic pairing! They’ve both gained a lot of publicity and attention of late, down to the sheer fact that they create great modern synth music, with that classic retro touch!
Thanks for answering! What have you got planned for the rest of the year?
– Trying to organize a two day festival next Spring. More news soon.
Listen to previews from the upcoming 7¨ split with Xiu and Spatial Relation, down below. The release itself will come out sooner or later, but definitely this Fall.