The time has come!!! 2017 is finally in the rearview mirror, a likely far worse year is just getting started, and thus, what better time to share with you the first of my two-part round-up of my favorite musics from 2017?! Before we get to new and reissued albums, let's talk about the new and reissued singles, loosies, and EPs that continue to drown us in equal parts quality and quantity. Don't get me wrong; there was a ton of shit music in 2017. But it was also the year where Selena Gomez recorded a song I truly loved (I think you can guess which one). However, with the exception of a few singles that are in every other list, the focus here is both on my favorite tracks and EPs and those that seem to have passed many other music writers by. With more good music available than ever, we're seeing a flight away from discovering underheralded gems as it's much easier to just tow the consensus line and feature that track that publicist you like sent you. And it's not like you won't have seen a lot of these records elsewhere...if you put in the work. But if not, well, I got your back with not just my favorite 2017 jams but also the songs I found during the year that had otherwise passed me by. Enjoy, be well, and keep kind.Read More
As I start to get back in the rhythm here again, in looking for some recent singles to review, I couldn't help but turn to two I've recently bought that have both had a large deal of hype around them. Last month saw the release of "pointillist trance" practitioner and all around "rave voyeur" Lorenzo Senni's Persona EP on Warp, placing him in the company of such synth maximalists as OPN and Rustie and he responds in kind, extrapolating on his austere trance reductions to create miniaturized and weightless dance music symphonies. On the other hand, one of the most influential and enigmatic electronic producers of the past decade, Burial, has gone and it again in surprise releasing his third holiday-timed EP. Unlike his past two efforts, this one is likely to leave people disappointed because while it sees the producer continuing to push his sound and compositional style forward, it also sees him failing to take into account the inspired sequencing that helped add a serious heft to his previous two- and three-track releases.
But more importantly, ten years on from Burial's first self-titled album and with the ten-year anniversary of his rave requiem Untrue due up next year, it strikes this writer as more than a little strange that we're having more or less the same discussion about music and memory that we were ten years ago. Thus, rather than do my typical crammed two-reviews-in-one approach, I'm going to post two separate pieces looking at the death and revivification of rave and just what exactly its contribution to contemporary dance music has been.Read More