As a bit of warm up to the upcoming and thoroughly scary (and time consuming) 100 renkingest tracks and probably around 40 or so olfactory albums, of 2008 here’s an allegorical toe in the water with my top 5 EP’s (or EP type things) of particular noteworthiness. Aside from the fact that this helped whittle down my 100 songs list from its 20+% over-budgetness, all of these five have remarkable quality control, to the extent that I could have picked pretty much any track from each. Undoubtedly two of the most mostest EPs that emerged in 08 were from The Naked And Famous, but I have excluded Round Trip Mars gear from these here charts because it’s hard enough slimming these lists to a mildly managable amount, it’s a bit like choosing between children, and kinda weird because I listen to RTM stuff more than anything else through its various stages. Hanyways on with the five..no particular order, was hard enough getting em down to this.
Various – Bersa Discos Volume 1 (Bersa Discos)
Based between Buenos Airies and California (San Diego from memory), the Bersa Discos crew of Oro 11 and Disco Shawn have represented solidly with four vinyl EPs of flambeed nuevo-cumbia. This first’un is the pick of the bunch for me, even though it faced stiff competition from the ZZK 12″, that accompanied their sterling compilation dealing in similar hooha. El Hijo De La Cumbia has an ostentatious name that he more than lives up to, and Daleduro dishes out the damage relentlessly. The wax understandably looks somewhat sold out, but it’s still available digitally (see below) for people with fingers and ting.
(Buy the mptrees)
DALEDURO – BOMBON ASESINO
Uncle O – Uncle O (I’m A Cliche)
Uncle O sounds like somewhat of a legend amongst the musical denizens of Paris. He’s put together excellent comp series like ‘Champion Sound’ and ‘Shaolin Soul’, and he brings a whole heap of flavour and veteran vibes to the nine, all too brief, tracks on this release for Cosmo Vitelli’s shockingly good I’m A Cliche label. There’s delicate electro, gentle doof and Kraftwerkian machine doodles as well as a whole heap more high grade malarkey. ‘Avalanche’ thoroughly absorbed me for a while, what a tune!
UNCLE O – AVALANCHE
MRR/ADM feat Malcolm Catto – ? (MRR/ADM)
MRR – ADM are Mike Raymond Russell and Adam Doug Manella, also formerly known as MHE recording for the Sound In Color label. On this 10″ they’re joined by British sticksman/ex-Mo Wax artist/current Heliocentric and noted record collector Malcolm Catto for half of the tracks, apparently alongside some other folk. It’s all a bit sketchy, as the truly exquisitely packaged, red vinyl 10″ release comes with pretty much zero information bar ‘featuring Malcolm Catto’. Who cares it’s spooky, soundtracky, synth-laden psychosis of top-shelf calibre, and the kind of freak shit that could only come from California and Gaslamp Killer associates. Now very much a collectors item (check Discogs for a gulp) it was one of the years most expensive small purchases (from Melbourne’s top ranking Northside Records) and worth every cent.
(DirtyDrumswebsite) Apparently it’s them, they keep it shady. Two drum kits to bang out on your keyboard..tis fun.
CLAUSE FOUR – BLUE ON BLUE (DC RECORDINGS)
It’s true that I’m a longstanding, unabashed J Saul Kane fanboy, but it is undeniable that DC Recordings have had a sterling year, possibly their best ever. Tom Giles’ EP under the Clause Four moniker was one of many highlights, stretching out the possibilities of wonky, glitchy beats biz into all sorts of areas. This 12″ was justifiably stuck to the turntables for a good spell this year and it’s one that just gets better with repeat plays, as ever the artwork from La Boca is extraordinarily good. More please.
(Buy) while you can…
CLAUSE FOUR – VERSION #2
I think the ‘Emily’ EP would have to be be my pick of the bunch, though the vinyl version doesn’t actually feature the title track in any form. The choice of remixers is almost spotless, and it’s the sort of double 12″ package that recalls the glory days of that divine vinyl indulgence. I’ll be going into the Large Hadron Collider of a mix from Expanding Head Band in the 100 tunes palaver coming up but, aside from Nathan Fake’s somewhat meh remix, it’s all quality. Lee Douglas takes ‘Cutout’ to the outer stratosphere on his lengthy workout, while Detroit’s Echospace/Deepchord again distinguish themselves from the post Basic Channel/Rhythm & Sound crowd, with a brace of unfathomably deep belters. I’m hoping that Mr Harte is over the health issues that kept him from the last SP gig in Auckland, the set they played on the genius pre-BDO, line-up with SJD and The Clean at the dirty old KA last January was ear-crumbling fire indeed.