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George T and Johnny Aux – Amsterdam

Shout out to Joe Muggs’ always enlightening Bandcamp Daily column for the recommendation on this one. Johnny Aux – aka Quinn Whalley, one half of always interesting acid house group Paranoid London – teams up with George T for a three-track EP that includes this dubby slice of post-punk-techno-industrial-electronica-etc, featuring a dour vocal and even dourer muddy bass thumps. Uplifting it ain’t, mesmeric it most certainly is.

https://optimomusic.bandcamp.com/album/making-excuses-for-you-ep

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Music

Varsity Star – Mixtape

There’s no shortage of people making whimsical, melody-focussed electronica, and in the wrong hands (ie. the vast majority of the time) it can come across as overly sincere or laughably lightweight. Varsity Star hits the tricky-to-find sweet spot here with Mixtape – the lead single from a forthcoming mini-LP – pairing crushed, broken beats with a glistening synth line and demonstrating it’s perfectly possibly to make something beautiful yet punchy in this genre, as long as you get the balance just right.

https://www.instagram.com/varsity.star

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Music

irini – lost in dreams

Traumprinz is back, with a new alias, and another epic 3 hour drop of music. lost in dreams is the latest collection from the anonymous producer and follows last year’s double DJ Metatron / The Phantasy release, which, even though there were unquestionably some gems in there, I didn’t rate quite as highly as most of their previous work. lost is dreams is an absolute masterpiece though, reminiscent of his dj healer set from a few years back. It is truly remarkable that someone this talented has completely removed their ‘self’ from their art, and delivers such an insane amount of incredible music without ever feeling the need to revel in the glory that would inevitably come from unmasking themselves. Long may it continue.

https://soundcloud.com/planet-uterus

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Music

Sofi Gev – You’re The Star

This is the latest single from Sofi Gev, the solo project of American singer-songwriter and indie pop artist Hannah Lovelady. Blending elements of folk, indie, electronica and pop, You’re The Star features some wonderfully subtle and evocative vocal manipulations reminiscent of Oklou’s recent album. But while Oklou’s music feels sparse and at times detached, You’re The Star is warm and richly populated with a variety of instruments and textures: an intimate, glimpse into both the strength and fragility of desire.

https://sofigev.com/

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Music

Jim-E Stack – Jeanie feat. Bon Iver

Jim-E Stack is an artist who’s slowly crept onto my radar over the last couple of years by putting out a steady stream of reliably good but usually fairly understated, indie-electronica. “I’ll give this a shout out on the blog” I naively thought a couple of hours ago. “He could probably do with the support…” but oh right turns out he gets well over a million monthly listeners on Spotify and is already kind of A Big Deal. Probably should have guessed as much given the featured guest on this is Saint Bon Iver to be fair. Anyway, it’s great: and I’m very excited about his new album, Ephemera, which is out later this month.

https://www.instagram.com/jimestack

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Music

Sam Prekop – The New Last

Chicago’s Sam Prekop is a singer and guitarist in The Sea and Cake – a jazz-inflected indie band that have released 11 studio albums since 1994 – and also puts out his own, highly varied, solo material. The New Last is taken from his latest album, Comma, arguably his most immersive body of work to date: a collection of instrumental electronica that ranges from the meditative to neon-flecked psychedelia. The New Last itself is gorgeous: all brightly glimmering tones and warm pads that softly wrap themselves around you.

https://samprekop.bandcamp.com

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Music

Oklou – Fall

There’s not a lot to Fall – the opening track on Oklou’s new EP Galore – but what’s there is really rather special: subdued synth line, gently swelling pads and the hushed, intimate vocal. It must have taken a lot of restraint not to push everything into overdrive in the final third, but it works so well. The below video is from her recent Colors show and further highlights how much can be achieved with so little.

https://soundcloud.com/oklou93