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leftfield alternative light source

Leftfield ‘Alternative Light Source’ – Album Review

Infectious Music (2015)

Sixteen years after Rhythm and Stealth both cemented Leftfield as one of the UK’s greatest electronic duos and ultimately led to their demise, Neil Barnes attempts to prove that they’re just as remarkable a prospect as a one-man band with third album, Alternative Light Source. Indeed, co-founder Paul Daley, who at the turn of the century declared that he would never step foot on stage as part of Leftfield ever […]


major lazer peace is the mission

Major Lazer ‘Peace Is the Mission’ – Album Review

Mad Decent (2015)

Renowned for their organised chaos, dancehall collective Major Lazer’s previous releases have been fast, furious and frenetic affairs with only one goal in mind – to get the party started. However, as evident by its name, their third studio effort, Peace Is the Mission, is an unexpectedly more calming, composed and harmonious example of their production talents. Clocking in at just over 32 minutes, the follow-up to 2013’s Free The […]


icona pop

The June 2015 Dance/Electronica Playlist

A deep house duo’s official comeback, a talent show graduate’s foray into drum ‘n’ bass and a Great Gatsby-style makeover all appear in this month’s collab-heavy guide to the hottest dance/electronica tracks. Disclosure feat. Gregory Porter – “Holding On” Following on from buzz track “Bang That,” Disclosure make their proper return with the first official single from their eagerly-awaited follow-up to 2013’s Settle. Featuring the soulful tones of Grammy-winning jazz […]


jamie xx in colour

Jamie xx ‘In Colour’ – Album Review

Young Turks (2015)

One-third of Mercury Prize winners The xx, acclaimed producer Jamie xx now goes it alone for a solo debut album, In Colour, which as its title suggests, is a little brighter than the slightly gloomy alt-pop of his day job. The 26-year-old hasn’t entirely distanced himself from the trio that helped cement his status as one of his generation’s premier beatmakers. The multi-layered instrumentals “Obvs” and “The Rest Is Noise” […]


hot chip why make sense

Hot Chip ‘Why Make Sense’ – Album Review

Domino (2015)

Following three years of numerous solo and side projects, electronic pop oddballs Hot Chip finally return to their day jobs for a sixth studio effort, Why Make Sense?, which thankfully proves they haven’t lost any of the endearing quirkiness during their time apart. An attempt to recapture the energy of their live performances, the follow-up to 2012’s In Our Hands is perhaps the most organic that the British six-piece have […]


real lies

Introducing: Real Lies

The Reebok classics. The Lacoste polo shirts. The visual references to the USA World Cup. It doesn’t exactly come as a surprise that the sound of London three-piece Real Lies is just as much as indebted to the early 90s as their image. Signed to Sweet Exile (the same Marathon Artists imprint that is home to similarly retro-minded acts Childhood and Jagwar Ma), Kev Kharas, Tom Watson and Pat King […]


galantis

Introducing: Galantis

It’s difficult to see any other new dance act arriving on the scene this year with as strong a hit-making pedigree as Swedish duo Galantis, a.k.a. super producers Christian Karlsson and Linus Eklow. As one-half of pop factory Bloodshy and Avant, the former (who is also one-third of indie-pop trio Miike Snow) has been at the center of numerous monster chart smashes by Britney Spears (including the Grammy-winning “Toxic”), while […]


zedd true colors

Zedd ‘True Colors’ – Album Review

Interscope (2015)

A virtual unknown at the time of his 2012 debut, German-Russian producer Zedd has since won a Grammy Award, been invited to work his magic on records by Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande, and become an unlikely tabloid favorite thanks to his relationship with former Disney tween-queen Selena Gomez. Expectations, therefore, are much higher for his second album, True Colors. Adhering to the if-it-ain’t-broke-don’t-fix-it approach, the follow-up to Clarity follows […]


shura

Introducing: Shura

The daughter of a Russian actress and English documentary filmmaker who first began writing songs during a six-month stint working in the Amazon rainforest, Aleksandra Denton, aka Shura, arrives equipped with a slightly more interesting back story than most of this year’s hotly-tipped newcomers. However, the string of 80s-indebted synth-pop gems she’s released over the past twelve months proves that the English literature graduate can grab the public’s attention with […]


paul van dyk politics 3

Paul Van Dyk ‘The Politics of Dancing 3’ – Album Review

Ultra Music (2015)

A decade on after his last concerted attempt to unite people through the power of trance, German dance legend Paul Van Dyk returns to his The Politics of Dancing concept for a third volume of high-energy floorfillers. Unlike the 2001 first chapter in the series and its 2005 follow-up, this latest collection is a proper studio effort rather than a compilation of other artists’ work, meaning that the 43-year-old takes […]


MG

MG ‘MG’ – Album Review

Mute (2015)

The driving force behind the world’s most enduring synth-rock band, Depeche Mode’s Martin Gore has recently had to share songwriting duties with frontman Dave Gahan, which perhaps explains why the 53-year-old has now revived his brief solo career for an eponymous second effort released under the guise of MG. A completely different beast from that of his ’03 covers album Counterfeit, this belated follow-up is an entirely instrumental affair which […]


the chemical brothers

The May 2015 Dance/Electronic Playlist

From Diplo and co.’s latest star-studded single to the welcome return of the Big Beat scene’s pioneers, to an underrated UK vocalist’s rebranding, here’s a look at the finest dance/electronica singles making waves this month. Major Lazer feat. Ellie Goulding – “Powerful” Following on from their hit collaboration with MØ, the usually chaotic supergroup Major Lazer continue to tone down their hyperactivity by teaming up with another European synth-pop songstress. […]


passion pit kindred

Passion Pit ‘Kindred’ – Album Review

Columbia (2015)

The first Passion Pit record since Michael Angelakos severed all ties with his one-time bandmates, essentially reducing the Massachusetts quintet to a solo vehicle, Kindred sees the falsetto-voiced frontman once again combine effervescent synth-pop with cathartic confessionals. It’s an intriguing contrast which has already seen his pet project rise from cult heroes to the upper reaches of the Billboard charts – predecessor Gossamer peaked at No.4 back in 2012 – […]


tourist

Introducing: Tourist

South East London producer Will Phillips, aka Tourist, has yet to release a full-length album, but he has already picked up a Song of the Year Grammy thanks to a co-writing credit on Sam Smith’s ubiquitous ballad, “Stay With Me.” The prestigious accolade isn’t the only thing the 28-year-old has in common with the man labelled the male Adele. He’s also signed to the label fronted by Disclosure, the deep […]


pale blue the past we leave behind

Pale Blue ‘The Past We Leave Behind’ – Album Review

2MR (2015)

Hot on the heels of Johnny Jewel’s score for Ryan Gosling’s much-maligned directorial debut, Lost River, New York producer Mike Simonetti (the other co-founder of Italo-disco label Italians Do It Better) returns to the fray under the guise of Pale Blue for his first album, The Past We Leave Behind. Named after the Pale Blue Dot term used to describe the photograph of Earth taken by the Voyager 1 space […]


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