Efficient Space / Hell Yeah! / Phantom Island / 2018 In Review

3AM Spares

Michael Kuyck / Noise In My Head / Efficient Space

While Noise In My Head`s long-running, and hugely inspirational / influential radio show drew to a close in 2018, its associated reissue label, Efficient Space, released three biggies. Julien Dechery cherry-picked from the cassettes of Sebastian Gandera. The resulting collection, Le Raccourci, found Gandera`s classically-trained piano woven around “environmental” samples (from barking dogs to tribal chants) and synthesizer experiments. Andras and Instant Peterson followed up 2016`s Midnite Spares, with 3AM Spares. Raiding the archives of Melbourne`s 3RRR Radio to document the city’s nascent Rave scene. 

Waak Waak Ga Min Min, by Waak Waak Djungi, was one of my favourite reissues of 2018. Where the history of Australia`s Northern Territory, the songs of the Marangu and Malabirr clans, were put to slightly New Age-y backing. The words, sung in Djinang and Gannalbingu, to me at least, could have come from anywhere on this globe, and seemed to confirm that we are all share a common ancestor – and served as a reminder that music was the first medicine.

Top Three New Singles

Terre Thaemlitz, Robin Rimbaud, Ben Galyas / Ben Loves Terre Loves Robin [Premature Recordings]

Emerson Kitamura / The Countryside Is Great [EM Records] 

CS + Kreme – Husk / Cold Shoulder [The Trilogy Tapes] 

Top Three New LPs

Tapes / Silence Please [Good Morning Tapes

De Leon / De Leon [Mana] 

Träden – Träden [Subliminal Sounds] 

Top Three Reissues

Ingleton Falls / Champagne In Mozambique [Isle of Jura] 

Carola Baer / The Story of Valerie [Concentric Circles] 

Areski / Un Beau Matin [SouffleContinu Records] 

One Thing You`re Looking Forward To In 2019

Teaming up with Be With Records to reissue one of my top five all-time favourite LPs, marking the end of a two and a half year quest.

Calm By Your Side

Marco Gallerani / Hell Yeah!

It`s been a strong year for Hell Yeah! I reckon. As I’ve written elsewhere, I think they’ve featured in nearly every monthly Ban Ban Ton Ton “round up”. Either in a “Looking For The Balearic Beat”, or a “Chocolate Milk And Brandy”. Often both. There have been releases by 3iO, Alexander Robotnick, My Friend Dario, Somerville & Wilson, and Kito Jempere. The latter with some fine remixes from Jimi Tenor, Miskotom and Max Essa. Max` own Han Zon Roc E.P. / suite, was a label highlight. A combination of seductive drum-programming, and jazzy, Fusion licks. The title track, a groove of two halves, that was perhaps a homage to the Def Mix of Knuckles, Kupper, and Morales. Calm`s LP, By Your Side, I know, was a long-term ambition come true for Marco. The Japanese “chillout” veteran and festival favourite, mixing subtle electronics and piano. Occasionally showing off his Jazz chops. His “Space Is My Place”, dreaming of the great outdoors, and an infinite horizon. Marco`s brother, Gallo, put out two E.P.s. The first, Remember To Forget, contained the Manuel Gottsching tribute that was Fabrizio Mammarella`s remix of Faron. The Second, Sverna was a set of downtempo, Dub Techno, blissed-out bleeps, and sunset Rave fireworks. Personally, I also fell in love with the guitar riff on Giorgia Morandi`s Children Of The Sky. An almost lost piece of 1980s Italo, reissued by Hell Yeah!`s archival imprint, Perdio.

Top Three New Singles

Flamingo Flame / Simmer [Rogue Cat Sounds]

I discovered this one listening to a guy called Nick Acid Tree on Red Light Radio. I don’t know him personally, but I’ve been a follower since an Electric Elephant festival a few years ago… He was wearing a t-shirt with Italy’s SIAE 80s logo on the front… Class.

Someone with “that” taste can only deliver goods, and so he did with this tune… I got a copy of this superb production, and wherever, whenever, I played it, ladies were dancing, and, mathematically, every DJ in the room was asking, “What’s this?”

Esa – Mos Mos E.P. [Endless Flight]

I love the melting-pot of influences on this acidic, breakbeat driven, spaced-out, Balearic E.P. Nice dance-floor style to follow for 2019 I think.

Mogwaa – Mi Male Curiosity [Red Seal Records]

The second release on Luca Lozano’s Reggae / Dub label is a beauty. I think Mogwaa is Korean. This is Digi-Balearic-Reggae-Dub, and a magic Kid Creole cover. I can’t wait for next release

Top Three New LPs

Calm / By Your Side [Hell Yeah!]

It has been an honour and a privilege to be involved in this one.

Videotapemusic / Souvenir [180g]

Samplemania. An amazing album, that The Avalanches never made. 

Nu Guinea / Nuova Napoli [NG Records]

Italian album of the year over here, that`s turning everyone onto better music.

There’s been a crazy solid new album from Bjorn Torske as well, and that Antoine Kogut`s Sphere Of Existence has been one of my fave listenings too… 

Top Three Reissues

Volcano / Vanonyana Lava [Afrosynth Records]

Merva Grier – Feeling Like A Million [Iroko Records]

Haruomi Hosono & Tadanori Yokoo – Cochin Moon [Light In The Attic]

One Thing You`re Looking Forward To In 2019

Nice breakbeats.

lexx hot weather

Lexx / Phantom Island

This Summer, Phantom Island released, Hot Weather. A collaboration with Californian, Harriet Brown, and Londoners, Open Space. Timed perfectly to co-incide with a global heatwave, and a growing interest in “Street Soul” – a vogue perhaps prompted by the reissues of Bo`vel and Sleepys Theme by Be With Records. Earlier in 2018, the Zurich-based label were responsible for one of the possible sleepers of the year in Wavetest`s Wrong Planet E.P. A sophisticated meeting of Techno-Soul and Dub-Disco.

Top Three New Singles

Two Thou, Autre, Xinner, Enrico Demuro / Trudu [Gifted Culture]

Jaubi / Lahore State Of Mind (Al Dobson Jr Remix) [Astigmatic Records]

Sky Tony / Moves You Use [City Baby Records]

Top Three New LPs

Black Milk / Fever [Mass Appeal]

Mac Miller / Swimming [Warner Bros]

Joe Armon Jones / Starting Today [Brownswood]

Top Three Reissues 

Ronald Langestraat / Searching [South Of North]

Jean-Pierre Boistel & Tony Kenneybrew / Percussions Pur La Danse [Left Ear Records]

Raul Lovisoni & Francesco Messina / Prati Bagnati Del Monte Analogo [Superior Viaduct]

One Thing You`re Looking Forward To In 2019

The release of my album, Cosmic Shift, on Phantom Island.


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