Preview: Xiu & Spatial Relation – Split! w/ questions for Peripheral Minimal!

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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.

Spotlight [SP. ED 1]: Nouvelle Phénomène / Soft Riot!

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As always, we head back to the realms of Other Voices Records. Who is on a certain music-spree, killing off all the competition. Or, well, that’s not really the case – but some seriously great releases have been relieving one another. Some that should’ve been Spotlight:ed a while ago, like their Nouvelle Phénomène-release. Since there haven’t been any creativity in the loop for a while, other business had to be dealt with first. But now, we return to the great Russian-based label which sorely needs our attention. Together with a whip of Soft Riot, as they’re also featured over there, with their already released album (since a month ago) “Fiction Prediction“. Hey, who doesn’t like when it rhymes. Well, let’s get to it, since you don’t want some blabbermouth introductory, as you’d already know them by know. This post will be updated with a review of Soft Riot’s latest endeavor, when it’s done.

a1778775496_10Nouvelle Phénomène is a group of Hungarians, that haven’t been brought to my attention, til’ now. Santa Angela, Santa Fanni, Dziba Zsolt and Peter Buza have one thing in common – which is synth-pop with a jaded edge of new-wave and minimalism. The catchy tones of this double-single, titled “Caresse / Glory of Romance“, is a tease indeed. The concentrated drums, hitting the soft-spoken nerve that they’ve incorporated with their rhythmic endeavor, is carefully packaged together with a francophilic adoration, sampled amidst the up-beat happiness of “lé soleil“. It’s important enough, because the sun is shining in their direction. Grandiose on one hand, minimalistic in the carefully laden undertones of the swooping synthesizer. Frankly enough to touch the tip of your noise, be so brazen to ask you out and invite you to the party of your life. “Retro-fantastic“, could be a world to describe it, as they see to their roots before they carefully model the landscape they wish to present. Clinking to their pieces, mapping out exactly the feeling, without having to pinpoint it for the listener. Sometimes interpreting the atmospheric senselessness that isn’t always present in synth-pop, and as such – they’re leading the charge towards a brightener future. At times, the darker tones of their loveable sound-scape move you onto dampening and tearjerking journeys through imagined landscapes of ultimate destructiveness. Reminding you, oh so much, that your perception of invulnerability is a joke. Well, it would not be so far away to remind them of Swedish purveyors (now disbanded) Zeigeist, as you indulge in the second song “Glory of Romance“, which certainly has its likeness. Cleanliness is not a sin, remember that, as the angelic sounds clean you out totally – turning your mind upside down, and your heart inside out. Nouvelle Phénomène might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but they strike a resemblance, and they strike when you need them to.

Premiere: Peter The Roman – I’m No Loser

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Earlier this month, or the month before it, we were appalled by the sheer brilliance of Peter The Roman. Now he’s set sail with a brand new song, which leaves nothing to wish for. This time around, he’s done a quirky cover of the song “Loser” by the well-known artist Beck. Titled as: “I’m No Loser“, he sweeps us off with his somewhat unpolished dark electro meets experimental vibes. It might not be the best thing he’s delivered, but it’s something you should take a quick listen to and see if it could be something for you.

Spotlight: Peter The Roman – Printer Silicone Machine

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If I could be a Roman for a day, something would change in every way. His name would be designated, I would be elevated and everything would certainly be electronica-related. This man is Peter The Roman and he’s a new man in this world of three-dimensional sounds, equipped with a repetitive and snarky responsiveness, musically. His latest release “Printer Silicone Machine“, could be everything in this world that you’d want to hear. Besides the fact that it’s pretty repetitive, it’s also monolithic to an extent and what I would envision myself doing musically, actually. Not in this shape, maybe, but where the sounds aren’t that predictable – and weigh a heavy amount of tonnes. At times you’ll hear some nostalgic vibes, but it’s original in the manner that the warmth exhilarated from the body of the electronica is sincere at the top, but wondrous “down below“. It might not seek anything below the underground, but he certainly has ambitions at times. However, it’s noticeable that it stems from an experimental waypath that he has embarked upon. Among all the jibberish samples, there’s a little hint of everything that makes electronica what it is. Or, at least – how it should be. I find it odd, but I enjoy it when it doesn’t set me offbeat. The album features ten songs and you can download two of them for free. It was probably released D.I.Y., by himself.

Spotlight: Theatre Royal – Three Ships EP

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Spotlight returns to its former glory, as we float beyond the time and space continuum. As the people glare at us, we present to you Theatre Royal, an fully equipped British adventure from Rochester. Wrought from the same shades as us, brought to justice within a mural indie context. But maybe not to that full extent, as the psychedelic pop vibes of yesteryear plague us once again. Idealizing, a world with emotionalism, outbursts of concrete emotion. With wonderful voices, contextualized instrumentation and a folky vibe to the overall potpourri of influences. When the boat leaves our sacred shores, we shall go out to sea and tame the beasts. Conjugating the extremities of everyday life, spanning through landscapes far and wide – packed into a beholder for the people to observe. Theatre Royal show their teeth, but at the same time contain themselves – because they’ve got a story to tell us. Stories that are brought upon with the sincerity and normalized energetic posture that is sorely lacking in some areas of music. The four tracks featured on their EP are “Three Ships (disappear here)“, “Learning How To Be Idle“, “Orchard Song (Sun Studio demo)” and “(Just Like) A Sunny Day In June“, released by themselves. Feel free to listen to it down below.

Curxes release new song!

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As they’re one of my shady favorites, that I haven’t heard from Curxes since last time, they decided to release a completely new song titled “Further Still“. They’re back once again, better than ever. Who would’ve even thought that it couldn’t be anything else then that? Nobody. Although they might’ve strayed away from their darker elements, swayed into the wondrous and elegant melodious genre they themselves call “blitz-pop“. I’ll have to figure out what it is, but I’m listening to a totally new wonder and they’ve matured a lot. Instead of being insidious, shady and dark at the core – they metamorphosed into something even greater and higher. My spiritual cramp is suddenly healed and I feel like this could be the beginning of something totally new. I love what I hear and I will consider them the progenitors of that particular genre. Sweet, angelic and worthy of your time. You can listen to it down below and also download it for free.

Thee Showcase [#8.3]: Torquem, Brou de Noix and twothirtytwo!

1572809631-1Quickly, move fast, we’re at Thee Showcase again. It’s time for another round of great music. First up this time is the band Torquem, which is composed of three guys from Paris. They’ve currently released their latest album “Ansiktet“, which means “the face” in Swedish. Well, I would know, because I am after all a Swede. Delving into their world is a happenstance that would slowly but surely evolve into something greater. The tight rhythms, the suggestive melodies and the emotionally consistent music that they’ve put on for display, blends the best of jazz-influenced intermezzos and post-rock-induced experimentalism from different ages. It feels like you’re on a trip from a time and age to another, whilst you hear the clinging saxophone speak its own language, with fluency, as the baseline drums in another part of the song and; here comes a sample. They call themselves “cinematic rock“, which is something I would agree on. There’s difference changes in the structures, as the melodies change and as every mood is being displayed throughout. This multifaceted piece of music is simply unveiling itself, with ambitious intent, to knock us down on the floor. Ambitious would be an underestimate, because every song feels like an orchestra that simply puts its mouth to it. Even though the songs might not be that long, every piece of instrumentation makes sure that the huge suspense offered, doesn’t get lost in between structures. It feels like they’re connected and you can simply sit back and relax. The sound-scape itself is grandiose, but simply doesn’t want to leave any detail out of the mix, so whoever mixed this piece of interesting music should be proud. Gradually, you’re welcomed into the world of Torquem and it’s a pretty wonderland filled with experiences, extended periods of suspense, gratitude, sorrow and a sense of belonging. Thank you so much. Songs range from “Floehm” to “Elveleiet” and it was released on the 1st of March, by themselves – I guess. If you’d ever want a CD rather than the digital experience, you can mail them about it, over here.

2428207702-1Meet your maker, or meet your raver. Or something like that. Anyway, the group Brou de Noix are from France or Japan. I don’t really know which country. However, they’ve currently released an EP or something, titled “444“. If you combine the darker elements of industrial, the atmospheric guise of ambient and the concrete sound of old-school electronica, in the wake of dance or disco – is this what you get? I don’t really know. There’s so much going on when it comes to the genres, that it’s hard to categorize. But booming beats, hard industrial noises and cars driving past you is a common denominator. Well, if you’d put the word disco beside the word industrial and threw a party within the confinements of an abandoned warehouse, this is possibly what you could get. What’s clear about it is that it’s a totally new approach to what you’d think could be electronica. Everything is at its point and peak, the trashy sound-scape waltzes around, trying to get your attention. But it’s slow enough to not be a stirrer. I must agree that my brain is in total decay now that the stereotypical formula can’t be placed. You know that I’m not formulaic, but damn, this is hard to describe. Willingly, I’d bet every penny on it being one of the most experimentalist approaches in a while, worthy of that particular word, in comparison to everything that gets it slapped upon itself. Quickly, put on a gas mask and head for the elevator, we’re going to party in an abandoned warehouse – together with Brou de Noix and their post-disco-industrial-rave-music. The three tracks featured on this release are “Ashes“, “Compost” and “Where the wild things are“, it was released on the 3rd of March and is totally D.I.Y. for what I know.

3335825678-1Since I feel good today, I had to add a third band to this list. How about some alternative rock meets classic post-punk? Yeah, I know, I saw it in your eyes that you wanted it. This is another one of those bands that compare themselves with Joy Division, which is undoubtedly a little bit true. Most of the time I ain’t too keen on them, but this is an exception. They’re from the UK and have played in bands like The Xcerts, Bleech, Native and The After Party. Not that I know any of those bands, but that doesn’t matter anyway. They’ve currently released a single for their upcoming album titled “Patriot“. Something that gets me with their music, is their sense of nostalgia and how they can mix it perfectly in between shades of silence and a hurricane of riffs that face you directly. Only thing I wouldn’t be a fan of is the snaredrum sound, because it hits me off balance each and every time. Well, it’s saved by the wonderful ranges of British dialect. His sincere words cut through butter like a hot plastic knife. Or, yeah, it feels like someone is cutting an onion in front of your eyes. Very emotional, this release, with everything topped off. I guess the most important thing is how they arrange the instrumentation, how they fit in the different overpasses and how they do it with such precise vigor. Because it’s everything that you’d need to get an emotional reaction of this scale, because I recognize myself in some of the lyrics that they put out there too. Which is a great point for a band that I haven’t known anything about in the past few days. It feels like I’ve known them for ages, by now. The riffs, the drumming and the suspense when the singer and the back-up go out in a whirl is amazing in one way or another. The only track featured is “Patriot“, which was released recently and will be available for streaming on their bandcamp until the 18th of March, then it will be available for download together with the B-side titled “Lets Go Out“.