Balearic Mike`s Musical Diets / Week 8: 12/03/2021

Words & selections by Balearic Mike.

This week I’m being a grumpy old fart and moaning about why some great new music is digital only, then contradicting myself with a wonderful new vinyl comp, and then going back a few years to something that didn’t get any where near enough props…

Two of my favourite current tracks are digital only – which REALLY PISSES ME OFF – WHY ISN’T THIS ON VINYLZ?

Begin – Hey Joe – Bandcamp 2021

A beautiful bouncing summer groover – imagine a sound-clash between Prescription Records and Metro Area – plus a hymn to America, as the land of the free has decided that fascism is a bad idea after all and has chosen to give democracy and decency another try. This is the kind of track you might find on the flip of a less insane Underground Resistance record. If “Balectro” was a real thing, and not just a stupid joke that Moonboots and I tried to get going about 20 years ago, this is what it would sound like. Please release a proper LP Jim, on vinylZ …

Begin Hey Joe Bandcamp

Again this is currently digital only – although I do have this on vinyl from way back when…

A Man Called Adam – CPI (Andrew Weatherall’s Godiva Mix) – Bandcamp 2021

A stunning version of this early AMCA track, originally released in 1991 on The Chrono Psionic Interface E.P. This still sounds fresh and futuristic, although that timbale drum sound drenched in reverb instantly transports me back to sweaty nights in 1991 / `92  – it`s the sound of Weatherall, Justin Robertson remixes, Fabio Paras records bursting with bongos, and everything on William Orbit`s Guerrilla imprint. Me, lost in the music, and trying desperately to bury thet thought that “work will be “interesting” tomorrow morning”. Sally and Steve have made this available again – digitally – with proceeds going to some of Andrew`s favourite charities. Top stuff! Thank you for the music Andrew, Sally, and Steve…

Onto another new, stunning, Japanese, compilation…

Heisei No Oto (Japanese Left-Field Pop From The CD Age, 1989-1996) – Music From Memory 2021

It seems like only yesterday that I was singing the praises of one brilliant Japanese pop compliation, and then like buses, another comes along almost at once!

Some of my favourite collections from the last 8 years or so have been put together by Music From Memory, and this is right up there as one of my top picks on the label, alongside the stellar Uneven Paths, and John Gomez` two frankly wonderful Outro Tempo Volumes. Heisei No Oto has a different tone and feel to the Somewhere Between release from Light In The Attic last month – it`s much gentler, cinematic, with an almost new age feel to some of the music – but again, it’s completely mind-blowing in terms of the quality, and beauty, of the music herein. It`s impossible to pick favourites after only a handful of plays, but Dream Dolphin`s Take Ni Michi, which the label pushed as part of the promo is really very special. Noriko of Dream Dolphin is credited with releasing 20 LPs in 8 years, so as an introduction to a larger world of record “digging”, this could prove to be a very dangerous collection indeed. As always with MFM, the release is beautifully pressed, mastered and packaged. The sleeve artwork, a couple of paintings Hagihara Takuya, is incredibly weird and wonderful in equal measure, and the label top the set off with the added details of a gatefold sleeve, poly inners, plus a colour insert and an obi for the authentic Nippon effect.

To close, a criminally overlooked Balearic beauty…

Ali Kuru – Egzotik – Leng 2017

This incredible LP came out with little fanfare on Claremont 56’s sister label, Leng, a few years ago, but it’s become an album I go back to again and again. So little fanfare in fact, that the first I’d heard of it was when I walked into Mr Bongo’s record shop in Brighton one Saturday afternoon and saw it on display. Being good friends with Paul “Mudd” Murphy, one half of Leng’s board of directors, you’d have thought I’d have had a bit of a heads up, but no. Anyway, it’s cover looked great, so I gave it a spin, and was hooked by the second track.

Ali Kuru is a producer from Istanbul who I know nothing about aside from this record, and the handful of 12” singles released from it. Ali`s music is a hypnotic, minimal, blend of traditional Turkish melodies set dancing over chugging electronic rhythms – VERY Balearic in other words. It really is quite a stunning long-player. It also reminds me of a visit from our excellent San Francisco friends, Travis and Mmara – since Travis came with me on that trip to Mr Bongo, and bought so many records that they considered closing early for the day!

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