Philip Sherburne

writer

Biography

  • Hauschka Agdam Abandoned City

    Hear Hauschka's 'Agdam,' a Prepared-Piano Portrait of an Azerbaijani Ghost Town

    Next month, prepared-piano maestro Hauschka will release his first album since last year's Silfra, with Hilary Hahn, and his first solo album since 2011's Salon Des Amateurs. Titled Abandoned City, it's a concept album of sorts, with the majority of its tracks named after places like Elizabeth Bay, a Namibian former mining town, and Stromness, a former whaling station on South Georgia Island, in the South Atlantic, from which Ernest Shackleton launched a 1916 rescue mission to save his stranded crewmen in Antarctica.

  • Neneh Cherry / Photo by Jolie Ruben

    Neneh Cherry's 'Blank Project' Is an Ocean of Intimate, Nonchalantly Electrifying Funk

    Neneh Cherry has made a career out of hiding in plain sight — which, granted, might be a funny thing to say about a woman who once performed on Top of the Pops when she was seven months pregnant.But, be honest now: Even if you know better than to reduce her career to "Buffalo Stance" — and I hope and trust you do, even though careers have certainly been based on less than that pinnacle of pop perfection — did you really know the full extent of what the Swedish-born singer has done? She played in two major dubby post-punk bands (New Age Steppers, and Rip Rig and Panic) alongside dubby post-punk heavyweights like Bim Sherman, Mark Stewart, Steve Beresford, Ari Up, and other members of the Pop Group. She sang backup in the Slits and danced in Big Audio Dynamite's "C'mon Every Beatbox" video. The Dreem Teem remix of her "Buddy X" was a minor U.K.

  • Illum Sphere,

    Lone's Remix of Illum Sphere's 'Embryonic' Is a Blissful Dose of Drum'n'Bass

    The British producer Lone has a particularly promiscuous relationship with dance music's subgenres. He's tried his hand at lysergic beat music with 2009's Ecstasy & Friends, rosy Detroit-techno revivalism with 2010's Emerald Fantasy Tracks, and opalescent boogie via last year's "Airglow Fires" (No. 8 on SPIN's 50 Best Dance Tracks of 2013). Now, in a remix of Illum Sphere's "Embryonic," he trots out the rolling rhythms of mid-'90s drum'n'bass.The tempo may have shifted, but the signature — bright, buoyant, blissful — is all Lone. The original, on Illum Sphere's recent album Ghosts of Then and Now, is an ethereal fusion of R&B and Steve Reich, and the remix makes good on the song's will-to-weightlessness with an upward spiral of chimes, harps, and crisply stepping breaks.

  • The Martinez Brothers - Warhol*Basquiat 2

    Dance Tracks of the Week: The Martinez Brothers Enter the D.A.I.S.Y. Age

    The Martinez Brothers, WARHOL*BASQUIAT*2 (mixtape) The Martinez Brothers were just 13 and 18 when they put out their debut single, "My Rendition," on Dennis Ferrer's Objektivity label, in 2007. While their age contributed to their anointment as instant underground faves, the skills (and charm) they've displayed behind the decks since then have cemented their exalted status. (Which, in turn, has led to gigs like soundtracking Givenchy runway shows.) What they haven't been, though, is prolific; they've released just seven records in seven years, two of them collaborations with the Greek producer Argy — just north of a dozen tracks in all, not counting remixes. So it seems ironic that their new mixtape — a free download, like its predecessor, the five-track WARHOL*BASQUIAT — effectively quadruples the size of their catalog in one fell swoop.

  • Daniel Avery, Need Electric (Audion Remix) Phantasy

    Audion's Remix of Daniel Avery's 'Need Electric' Is a Polar Vortex Come to Life

    Back in January, the British producer Daniel Avery put his signature touch on a remix of Audion's "Sky," an anthemic new cut included on Audion X, a 10-year anthology of Matthew Dear's work under his club-oriented alias. Now Dear returns the favor with a remix of "Need Electric," off Avery's debut album, Drone Logic.The new remix finds the two musicians in full-on mind-meld mode. Whereas Audion's "Sky" already sounded like a tribute to Avery's raving-at-the-edge-of-the-world sense of drama, the original of "Need Electric" delved deep into the creepy, tweaked-out minimalism that has always been Audion's M.O.

  • Maelstrom, 'Tank Diving' (Zone)

    Maelstrom Goes 'Tank Diving' for Gesaffelstein and the Hacker's Zone Records

    Gesaffelstein's debut album was widely celebrated for its darkly lustrous take on techno — moody and severe and totally French, with all the opulence and tension of a blackout during an overcrowded Dior Homme runway show. The same could be said of his countryman Maelstrom's new EP for ZONE Records, run by Gesaffelstein and the Hacker.The label tells us that Maelstrom (Joan-Mael Péneau, active since 1999) hails from "an ancient French harbor city," and it sounds like it: His Discord EP is full of dank, oily sounds, shadowy as a gas-lit alley in a seedy neighborhood.

  • Untold

    Untold's Deathly Drops, Optimo's Spacey Blues, and 10 More New Dance LP's in Control Voltage

    ALBUM OF THE MONTHUntold, Black Light Spiral (Hemlock) Each of the promo MP3s for Untold's Black Light Spiral came tagged as "PRECISE MASTER," which feels appropriate, given the exactitude he brings to his music. The British producer works with surgical precision, both in the sense of teasing out the coiled innards of his machinery and in the military connotations of the phrase, e.g. "surgical strikes," raining down death from above with extreme prejudice. To underscore that point, he even begins this record with five minutes of nothing but howling air sirens, for crying out loud.But quite unlike bass music's harder/meaner/faster crew, this dubstep defector merely implies violence instead of actively meting it out, with overdriven drumbeats and basso rumble building to a climax that never comes.

  • Laurent Garnier

    Dance Tracks of the Week: French Techno Titan Laurent Garnier Bangs the Box, Chicago-Style

    EeOo, Workout EP (Unknown to the Unknown) Might be a good idea to keep some Dramamine handy for this gut-wrenchingly turbulent new EP from EeOo, one-half of the Irish techno duo Lakker. This being an UTTU joint, it figures that there would be chopped-up robo-Chipmunk vocals and apocalyptic Mentasm stabs involved, but EeOo takes the sickly off-kilter thing to queasy new heights. Gliding pitch is part of it: The portamento on "Workout" brings to mind Nick Rhodes wrestling with the joystick on "Save a Prayer" while wacked out of his mind on vodka and Quaaludes, and the erratically plunging rave stabs of "Calc" suggest a Belgian rave in a multi-car pileup. But it's a rhythmic thing, too. Recent developments in no-fi may be inuring us to beats that sound "wrong," but these bizarrely contorted grooves have an elasticity that manages to bend brains and hips alike in whole new ways.

  • A still from Benedikt Frey's 'Koyaanisqatsi Reinterpretation'

    This 'Koyaanisqatsi' Remix Will Scramble Your Brain

    Nerve-jangling "future shock" is rarely as gratifying a sensation as it is in the 1982 film Koyaanisqatsi. Titled after a Hopi word that translates as "life out of balance," the film sets slow-motion and time-lapse footage of nature and industry against a hypnotically minimalist soundtrack by Philip Glass; the result is something like a kind of psychedelic version of documentary filmmaking — eminently stoner friendly, too, were it not for the absolute bummer of a subtext.Thirty-two years later, Koyaanisqatsi looks all the more prescient; there's nothing like this bizarre winter's extreme weather to remind us that modern life is still perilously out of balance. So a new "reinterpretation" of the film by the German musician Benedikt Frey feels especially timely.

  • Electric Forest

    Electric Forest Festival in Jeopardy as Companies Battle for Control of Land

    As companies tussle over EDM marketshare, the rave acronym PLUR ("Peace, Love, Unity, Respect") may be taking on new meanings. Say, for instance, "Pre-emptive Litigation to Unseat Raves."The fate of Michigan's Electric Forest festival is in limbo as concert behemoth AEG Live goes to court in the attempt to fend off the deep-pocketed EDM upstart SFX, reports Michigan's White Lake Beacon. (The article is available only to subscribers or for a $1.50 single-issue purchase, but it has also been posted on Reddit in full.) SFX denies any predatory intentions.A court petition filed by AEG Live reveals a potential struggle to control the lease attached to Rothbury, Michigan's Double JJ Resort, the site of Electric Forest since 2011.

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