Tag Archive: Black Acre Records


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Dr. Zygote may not be a familiar name but he’s been producing music in a number of different genres since he was 16 years old. He also runs the label’s Boot Records and Zoot Records both of which are established electronic music labels and he recent signed a deal with Eglo for a new project Strange U. “Grupo Zygote” is the first installment of Black Acre Records new Library Series which celebrates and replicates classic library music from the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s. So that the album fit in with this theme, Dr. Zygote decided to use all analogue equipment to play and record the songs on the album and used no samples in its production.

The album opens with the mains hum of ‘Alexandria (Mediterranean, Arabesque, Transient)’ . The track swiftly opens out with piano chords  are stabbed over the top of a shaken tambourine and then a breakbeat drops complete a with sharp snare. A piano melody comes in and feels both Arabic and jazzy. The track has a soundtrack vibe recalling a spy film or thriller set in the Middle East. Next up is ‘Beirut Dub (Lazy, Detroit, Sci-fi)’ shakers and stabbed synth bass and bleeps start off this track with heavy drums playing out a solid hip-hop beat and the shaker providing the shuffle in the groove. An analogue style synth lead smothers the track in a Sci-fi melody that buzzes fiercely. There’s some great nice dub delay on the snare from 2 minutes in. ‘Dragon Chase (Tense, Pursuit, Spacey)’combines a jazz hip-hop beat with loads of ride cymbals with dub delay and synth FX ping off above a deep foreboding bass guitar line. A thick harmonic synth smothers the drums as the track progresses. The first half of the album finishes with ‘Raga (Modal, Eastern, Psychedelic)’ where a synth drone steadily rises out of the silence, followed by two digital sounding synth melodies and dub delay effects. It’s all underpinned by a steady minimal hip-hop beat. The has an Indian and psychedelic feel. An organ and slow broken up breakbeat kick in after 1 minute 30 seconds and add to the psychedelic but tense feel. Dr. Zygote again applies dub delay to the snare in the final quarter of the track, it’s a nice production touch.

‘Giallo (Suspense, Measured, Lurking)’ opens the second half with a deep bass guitar line plays out, dub delay echoes and tambourine shakes, a synth pitch FX rises and falls creating an arcs over the mix. a minimal steady hip-hop beat holds everything together with. Dr. Zygote utilises lots of space, depth and texture on this track. Two thirds of way through a crawling electric piano melody emerges and a high synth creates extra suspense.  The album’s penultimate track ‘Lunar Dub (Sombre, Islands, Chalice)’ mixes stabbed organ chords, dub drums and a synth/electric piano melody during its opening. Then a  bit crashed minimal synth melody enters. The track reminds me of Ghostface Killah and Adrian Younge “12 Reasons to Die” album formula but with dub elements thrown into the mix.

“Grupo Zygote” is a solid instrumental hip-hop/library music album that ticks a lot of boxes in terms of atmosphere and quality beats. It stands out from a lot of music that currently mines the influence of library music and vintage soundtracks by not just utilising obvious 70’s and 80’s synth music influences such as John Carpenter, Vangelis and Wendy Carlos. He does have some contemporaries in this field including Oh No, The Gaslamp Killer and Adrian Younge but has made an album that competes on a similar level to these peers. Stream and buy “Grupo Zygote” here.

2nd September

Doctor Zygote – “Grupo Zygote” (Black Acre)

Doctor Zygote is a hip hop and instrumental beats based producer of music. Alongside DJ Jazz T he runs Boot Records, and also Zoot Records- a new sister label geared towards instrumental music. Alongside an unnamed rapper he is a member of STRANGE U.

9th September

Factory Floor – “Factory Floor” (DFA)

After two years of singles and build up it seems that the band will finally release their much anticipated début album in May 2013 on DFA records. The album will be preceded by the single ‘Fall Back’ eight and a half minutes of slow burning dance floor intensity.

Janelle Monae – “The Electric Lady” (Atlantic)

The follow-up to Monae’s debut album “The Archandroid” (2010) has been announced and is preceded by the single “Q.U.E.E.N.” featuring Erykah Badu.

Mum – “Smilewound” (Morr Music)

Morr Music press release:

You don’t need to be Freud to regard teeth as a delicate issue. They can make joy look joyous and pain look painful, and on the cover of the new múm album they do both at the same time. As “Yesterday Was Dramatic – Today Is Okay” (2001), “Finally We Are No One” (2002) and “Sing Along To Songs You Don’t Know” (2009) “Smilewound” is another example of the band’s art of juxtaposing two conflicting meanings and taking advantage of the energy created through the tension between both.

Sparser in sound than many of its predecessors, “Smilewound” is an airy, relaxed record. The múm-core-duo of Örvar and Gunni doesn’t make you laugh out loud (except maybe for the quirky vintage Arcade-sound-start of “When Girls Collide”), but it will make you smile often – despite the heavenly voices singing about violence in one form or another in most songs. Musically, múm’s capability to build playful electronic sound-ornaments around simple melodies is in full bloom. And these days they know that trimming the ornamentation can strengthen the melody. Take “The Colorful Stabwound”: an aguish drum’n’bass piece and”Smilewound” gets close to a straight pop-song. Even that isn’t very close, but it combines its rhythmic strength with a simple yet effective piano-line and the soothing lushness of a female voice to something compelling that follows you like the smell of a delicate eau de toilette. Or “Candlestick” which started out as a little ditty strummed on an acoustic guitar many years ago and has grown into this bouncy piece of synth-pop that changes its musical colours every couple of beats until you feel comfortably dizzy. Perfect pop in very fancy clothes. No wonder that antipodean pop-princess Kylie Minogue wanted to collaborate with múm on the “Whistle”, the main song in 2012-movie “Jack & Diane”.

Recorded in, among other places, the band’s practice-space, an old baltic farmhouse and on the kitchen-table after dinner, the album was produced by múm themselves. And being the revolving collective they are, it comes as no surprise that we see the return of former member Gyda. Defining satellites as part of the core fits nicely with the band’s penchant for ambivalence – in fact that’s part of the album’s charm.

Youngblood Brass Band – “Pax Volumi” (Tru Thoughts)

The latest is the band hope to complete the new album in autumn 2012 with a release planned for the the new year accompanied by an extensive world tour by this excellent live act!!!

 

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