Philip Sherburne



  • DJ Marfox Lucky Punch Lit City Trax Principe Discos

    Dance Tracks of the Week: DJ Marfox Throws a 'Lucky Punch' for Lit City Trax

    DJ Marfox, Lucky Punch EP (Lit City Trax) When Planet Mu's Mike Paradinas put together his recent "Trancework" mix — a set of footwork remixes of trance classics like Paul van Dyk's "For an Angel" and ATB's "9pm ('Til I Come)" — perhaps he had something DJ Marfox's "Terra Batida" in mind. The drums are the sort of loping, "Dem Bow"-ish batida (the instrumental form of kuduro) that we've come to expect from the Lisbon producer, but the synths are pure, early-'90s rave, triumphant as the steam whistle on the Trance Europe Express.As far as the footwork connection goes, you read that right: Marfox's new record comes out on none other than New York's Lit City Trax, home to records from Traxman, DJ Spinn, and, of course, the late, lamented DJ Rashad. Marfox hasn't gone footwork, however; the majority of the cuts here follow the 140-bpm template of his Príncipe recordings.

  • S.R. Krebs, Criminal (Cardini & Shaw Remix)

    Download the Cardini & Shaw Remix of S.R. Krebs' Sultry 'Criminal'

    Sarah Rebecca Krebs bounced from her native Mississippi through New York, South Dakota, and San Francisco before finally making her way to Paris. That's where she lives today, turning out a sultry strain of electro-pop noir as S.R. Krebs. She released her debut single last fall on Paris' Her Majesty's Ship label, coolly fusing the subtle drama of early Siouxsie with the slightly clammy funk that's long been a hallmark of the French techno underground.

  • Animic,

    Stream Catalan Rockers Animic's Expansive 'Hannibal' Album

    There's nothing anemic about Anímic, a Catalan quintet hailing from Collbató, a village outside Barcelona. Quite the opposite: Their fifth album, Hannibal, comes on in a full-blooded rush, with songs like "Shoot 'Em" scaling Swans-high peaks of intensity and atmospheric slow-burners like "El Crani I La Serp" approximating Mogwai's soft-loud smolder.

  • Blondes Rewire RVNG

    Dance Tracks of the Week: Blondes 'Rewire' Techno Four Different Ways

    Blondes, Rewire (RVNG) With last year's Swisher, New York's Blondes took a metaphorical scrap of sandpaper to the sound they had established a few years prior. What before had been buoyant and Balearic became streamlined, steel-reinforced, and colored a thousand shades of grey. Their techno transformation continues on a new set of remixes from Simian Mobile Disco, Claro Intelecto, Huerco S., and Function. For the most part, these sound more or less as you might expect them to: Claro Intelecto's chugging, mid-tempo "Wire" remix is darkly lustrous, like a trove of gold glinting dimly at the back of a cave; Function's is both weary and regal, uniting dub techno with metallic drones; and Huerco S. goes for the garbled and gnarled, turning out a lumbering strain of house that seems to be dissolving from inside.

  • Perc, Dumpster (Clouds Remix), Perc Trax

    Scotland's Clouds Go 'Dumpster'-Diving Through Perc's Techno Wreckage

    Let's hear it for truth in advertising. The British producer Perc came correct when he came up with the titles for his second album, The Power and the Glory: Cuts like "Rotting Sound," "Lurch," and "Take Your Body Off" are every bit as brutal as you'd expect, but even his most damaged, perilously overdriven sounds move with an unmistakable grace: It's earbleed techno at its most elegant.Now, as part of a remix package also featuring Untold and Tessela, the Scottish duo Clouds dives into Perc's "Dumpster," turning what had been an exercise in Millsian repetition into slow-motion techno that's as atmospheric as it is visceral.

  • SFV Acid, 'Amber's Stuff' (UNO NYC)

    Stream SFV Acid's Cheerful Breakup Album 'Amber's Stuff'

    SFV Acid's Amber's Stuff is pretty chill for a breakup album. There is no wailing, no rending of garments, no raging against the dying of the light; just slick digital synths, rippling drum programming, and a sublimated hint of acid house at its most innocent. Like The Dwell, Zane Reynolds' last album under the SFV Acid alias — those initials are short for his home, the San Fernando Valley — Amber's Stuff sounds like an attempt to make peace with artifice.

  • Radio Slave,

    Dance Tracks of the Week: Radio Slave Goes Sleepless for Boddika's Nonplus Label

    Radio Slave, "Don't Stop No Sleep" (Nonplus) It's odd to see Radio Slave turning up on Boddika's Nonplus Records, but "Don't Stop No Sleep" makes sense there: All three of the EP's cuts share the dry, scratchy, slightly grudging quality of Nonplus releases from Kassem Mosse, Joy Orbison, and Actress. It's very much a Radio Slave record, though — linear, reduced to a chalky outline, mean in both senses of the word. The original version makes do with little more than kick drum, hi-hat, and a repeated chord that plays out like a series of knots in a long rope; building steadily yet almost imperceptibly, it would make an excellent soundtrack for running stairs.

  • Breach, 'Ode Oshi' (Aus Music)

    After His Lascivious 'Jack,' Breach Gets Sentimental on 'Ode Oshi'

    House tracks don't come much more direct than Breach's "Jack." With little more than a stripped-to-the-bone drum groove, an octave-plunging bass line, and an irresistible vocal hook ("I want your body / Everybody wants your body / So let's jack"), his 2013 single for Dirtybird neatly summed up the fusion of underground sensibilities and populist outreach, and it went to No. 9 in the U.K. singles charts in the process.But with his new EP for Will Saul's Aus Music, Breach (the clubby alter ego of Ben Westbeech) edges away from the spotlight and back towards deeper, murkier climes, with misted white noise and bittersweet organs that faintly recall DJ Koze's sentimental shufflers.

  • The Central Executives, 'A Walk in the Dark' (Golf Channel)

    Dance Tracks of the Week: The Central Executives Take 'A Walk in the Dark'

    The Central Executives, A Walk in the Dark (Golf Channel) Whoever the Golf Channel label's Central Executives are, they have an exceptionally clear vision of the era of dance music they want to evoke — even if the period itself swims in a haze of spiked punch and poppers, its members-only clubs long ago converted to luxury condos and Duane Reades. The Execs' key touchstones are songs like Lola's "Wax the Van" and Loose Joints' "Pop Your Funk" — artifacts from the era in between disco and house, in which drum machines tangled with rolling congas and live keys, and four-to-the-floor grooves were only as steady as the hand holding the razor. A Walk in the Dark replicates the loosey-goosey feel of tape edits and percussion jams with rhythms that refuse to snap to any grid, and the singer's breathy, bluesy delivery only adds to the sense of slippage.

  • Duck Sauce Make Better Sketches than Jams on Lackluster 'Quack'

    Duck Sauce Make Better Sketches than Jams on Lackluster 'Quack'

    Duck Sauce ain't rocket science. From the beginning, the genius of A-Trak and Armand Van Helden's collaborative M.O. has been its simplicity: Take the chorus from a forgotten disco song, sprinkle on some electronic pixie dust, add a nonsensical (but SEO-friendly) hook — like the spoken phrase "Barbra Streisand," from their hit of the same name — and loop it all ad delirium. Top it off with the plausible deniability that accompanies such low-stakes hijinks ("It's about making a career out of brain farts," as A-Trak put it to Pitchfork) and you've got what amounts to a critically unassailable proposal. To slate Duck Sauce is to hate fun.That seems to be the defense for their debut album, Quack, which offers a dozen takes on their loony-loops formula, copiously interspersed with tongue-in-cheek skits designed to remind us that gravitas is not the issue, dude.

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