Tag Archives: electronic

MWTE – Attraction To Light

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I’ve been following the career of electronic trio MWTE from Metz quite closely for a while because I’m a huge fan of their first release, and on Friday two weeks ago I finally held their second (and first physical) EP in my hands: Attraction To Light. The artwork left the first fair impression. There is something magical about vinyls, as evidenced by their revived popularity, and coupled with gorgeous artwork, the aesthetic and emotional appeal of them is heightened even more. Kudos to madeByhujo alias Victor Ferreira for capturing the mood of the record so well.

The EP consists of two original songs and two remixes of each by Herr2003, Armagnac, Sun Glitters and Chapelier Fou. It also features Camille Delvecchio of Grand Blanc, who provides the vocals for Dead And Gone.

The title track, Attraction To Light, immediately draws you in with its soothing, pulsating beat. It hits the perfect balance between relaxing and engaging. Personally, I’ve been listening to it while studying and writing, because it doesn’t impose itself enough to distract you from whatever you might be doing, but still induces vibrations in your brain that motivate you to be active in some way. The first remix by Herr2003 brings about much the same effect at first, though it is decidedly more housey and bouncy and will make you want to get up halfway through and start dancing like the devil. The Armagnac remix feels like a different piece altogether, except for some tiny glimmers of familiarity sprinkled throughout. It maintains the distinct house influence of the previous track but wraps it up in a less frenetic whole.

Then the Attraction To Light chapter closes, and along comes Dead And Gone. It is just an incredible song. Iconic, almost. I can envision it in a fancy commercial or as the title track of a movie. Camille Delvecchio’s beautiful vocals enhanced by echo effects and MWTE‘s dreamy style work together excellently. I hope they will collaborate more in the future, because that is — quite literally, from a sonic standpoint — a match made in heaven. Sun Glitters does not take half-measures with his take on the song, as it brims over with grandiose effects. I have to admit that it’s my least favourite track, which is mostly due to the lofty standards the original set, and also the outstanding work by Chapelier Fou. The final remix is a mellow masterpiece with a melancholically ethereal edge, such a divine cherry on top of a wonderful, wonderful record.

The only downside is that it left me wanting more, but I’m sure the guys will take care of that with such an overwhelmingly positive response from the listeners. I advise you keep an eye on them too, because, to let you in on a secret: I believe they will be big. They have all the credentials to go far in their genre and proved it beyond doubt with Attraction To Light.

You can listen to MWTE‘s new EP on Soundcloud and buy it here, show them some love on Facebook and follow them on Tumblr for additional updates.

[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/playlists/14270111″ params=”color=ff6600&auto_play=false&show_artwork=true” width=”100%” height=”450″ iframe=”true” /]

Mr. Oizo – Amicalement

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Expect the unexpected, kids. You never really know what Mr. Oizo a.k.a. Quentin Dupieux‘s up to when it comes to a new release. Except that it’s gonna be electronic, trashy and yet geeky as fuck.

Amicalement‘s got every ingredient disposable that characterizes Mr. Oizo‘s sound and there’s still room for a surprising collaboration with Marilyn Manson on the second track Solid, which is a sick masterpiece. With 4 tracks on this EP, I have to admit that it’s just the right amount of electronic banter / genius you probably need in order to love or hate this guy even more; there’s no in between! If this is the way French electronic music should sound like, I’m all in!

You can currently get the EP for free on Mr. Oizo‘s fantastic website that looks and feels like an old Macintosh system or you can play some cool beats and samples on his Shit MPC, which also is a nice and  original gimmick.

[soundcloud url=”http://api.soundcloud.com/playlists/7336472″ params=”” width=” 100%” height=”450″ iframe=”true” /]

Justice – Access All Arenas

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There’s no better way to start the festival season than with a live album by one of your favourite bands ever, in this case Justice‘s live performance on Access All Arenas. As a matter of fact, I’ll be rocking this year’s Rock Werchter festival once again and I’ve been able to experience the sheer power of Justice‘s live sets on that site twice, back in 2008 and last year.

The live set was recorded in an ancient Roman amphitheater in Nîmes, in best Pink Floyd manner, if you know what I’m referring to. If you ever listened to Justice’s previous live album, Across The Universe, you will instantly notice that the opener is still the same, with Genesis‘ colossal intro making the crowd go apeshit in no time! This is the best proof for the timelessness of the first album † , that was released 6 years ago.

Against all odds, Gaspar Augé and Xavier de Rosnay do not only press midi controllers every once in a while, despite the prejudices people have towards electronic-dance-music acts. It’s not like both guys are on stage pressing buttons and peeling onions additionally. The strength of this duo bases in melting both albums into one crazy multi-layered experience. No big deal, you’d say, but that’s not the secret in Justice‘s sound. The twist is, unlike any other EDM project, finding a compromise between pounding beats and a fresh, elegant attitude only Frenchman can handle. Hate’em or like’em, Justice have an unmistakeable sound and signature, which turns them into a rare jewel in an electronic scene that has fallen into disrepute due to artists who ride the maximal sound bandwagon.

† Et Justice pour tous! †

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m46S-VGCimY]

PVT – Homosapien

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If you decide to call an album Homosapien all I can think of is evolution, be it as a human being or as a band. So I was really looking forward to PVT‘s newest release, as their last album Church with no magic (specially the first half of it) was one of my favourite records in 2010. The newest single Shiver made me quite curious as it sounded quite different and experimental with its spacy arpeggios and distorted, quirky vocals. Could Homosapien be a better album than the previous releases O Soundtrack My Heart, with its grandeur in sound varying from Jean-Michel Jarre to Kraftwerk influences?

The answer is no, unfortunately. Let me get this straight, from the beginning; Homosapien is not that bad, if you give it more than 5 listens. It grows a little. But it still feels like driving a car without loosening the handbrake, you think you’re driving 75 on the highway but all you do is blurring the sight of others.
I really greet the new approach in PVT‘s songwriting, more vocals and catchy moments like in Love & Defeat, or Evolution that reminds me of Kraftwerk’s Spacelab in the beginning which is a really cool thing but then there are songs like Homosapien, that is truly uninspired in everything; generic drumming, a little glitch here and there, a slightly distorted guitar and a bored vocal performance.

Vertigo is also a failure in case it was supposed to be a chilly intermezzo between some killer tunes. It tries to be relaxing and dreamy but sounds as innovative as if James Blake would fart into a vocoder. And this is the ONE real problem with this album.

Homosapien does not have any surprises nor does it challenge the listener. It’s more filler than killer. The dancy, crazy moments in older songs like Window have completely disappeared, it’s just like PVT have been taking tranquilizers for the last 3 years. The album lacks aggressivity, joy in performing and also consequence. What happened to the megalomania and wittiness that they had in O Soundtrack My Heart or Church With No Magic?

I guess it was just a hard task to keep up with the older albums so I think that this album must be considered as a pardonable faux pas. Let’s hope it was for the last time.
[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jufWwb4Car0]

Plankton Waves – Songs Of Endings

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“In all of our songs, we’re looking for a kind of beauty, and every beauty has a certain melancholy and gloom inside.” Plankton Waves pretty much knew into which direction the output for their debut EP would go when we had the pleasure to interview them last summer. Listening to Songs of Endings in this light, endings may be the beginning of something new. The musical experience throughout these 20 minutes of electronic music made in Luxembourg is hypnotic and leaves enough space for the listener to define what endings, beauty and melancholy could mean.

The overall repertoire has been broadened, the vocals still have that Indian-like feeling, nature merges into electronic worlds, sometimes dark, sometimes lucid, sometimes both and nothing at all.

Synthesizers and beats often leave place for experimentation and psychedelic parts, but they always just appear for a very short flash before arranging into straight forward and progressing tracks. A kind of 80s sound is still very present, even though not that obvious compared to their appetiser single Cloud Caravan, released last year. French and German lyrics are missing on Songs Of Endings, the mysterious vocals were chosen to be in English only this time. The overall psychedelic feeling rounds up the nature of the EP; it could be described as a poppish and experimental electro experience in the end, for those listeners who choose to put music into words. The rest may just want to give it a try and hear if the electronic Armageddon takes place or not.

The EP will officially be released on February 22nd (click here), accompanied with the release of a new video.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JR5bVUM42Is]