Tag: ambient

Dark Electronic Experiments

voxel records theremin music experiment

welcome to our latest update from the world of underground indie electronica. this month we found some experimental producers making music with a dark and moody edge, and the tracks on the playlist are tinged with styles that sculpt acid, techno, electro, dub-step and ambient into their creators’ own niche. have a listen!

First, we found Tabula Rasa which is from last year’s album SEUIL by ArtSaves. This has recently been given the remix treatment with brand new versions of most tunes. The original version of this particular track opens with a slow, haunting techno riff whistling behind bit-crushed percussion, but the rhythms slowly build as bass drum decay extends into an anchoring riff. The pace evolves by its rhythmical complexity, before a giant pad chops the track in two. The string synth signatures of this second movement intertwine into an echoing, ambient soundscape swollen with subtle motifs before fading into the gentle pick of acoustic guitar. This is a sophisticated production which is recommended for fans of Autechre and LFO.

Simplextro by Ring Theory launches us into a swamp of pacey effects from the outset. As the effects subside, the track breaks down into an innocent piano riff before reaching out its spiny tentacles to mash up the track with more effects wizardry. Whilst the production lacks the full bottom end typical of mainstream dub step, the adrenaline builds and nimble drum fills keep it true to the form. The production does well to encapsulate the simplicity of dub step into a more measured, electro context without mounting a full on and uncontrollable assault across the frequency spectrum.

The Time Will Never End by German producer n8front is introduced by a soft, steady heart beat from an electro bass drum accompanied by a sustained vocal pad. A breathy aqualung is sprinkled across the mix, before it breaks into a plodding, yet complex rhythmic shuffle. it is the lumbering variations in the percussion that drive the track, allowing simple sustained pads to breathe their mystery through it. The heavy rhythmical backbone sinks this track into the earth, and the lighter melodic tones to drift around it like mist.

Dark Ecstacy is the only track available from TiNO KREY on the Soundcloud stream. It opens with old-skool acid rave voices prodding a minor 3-note riff that is rendered by a howl reminiscent of the classic Korg M1 synth. The dry 808 drums add unadulterated authenticity, but the rhythms swing in and out of traditional acid and contemporary trap to give the whole arrangement its modern edge. If you’re looking for a bit of that retro rave spice then follow TiNO for any future tracks!

 


Wild Ambient Spaces

misty mellotron wilderness

Here we are again with a small collection of tracks we found whilst scouring the internet during May. The modern trip hop and ambient production techniques used in these tracks all conjure up a hint of wilderness and remote open spaces, so the combination of urban styles with organic influences makes these producers well worth following if you are hungry for laid back ambient and trip hop.

First on the playlist, we are lowered gently into iamforest‘s Hollie by tape-effected strings and vinyl crackles, before the crystal clear wave of drums, arps and pads spills across the soundscape. Each instrument, including the subdued vocal, takes a turn to dominate as the arrangement ebbs and flows between lolloping trip-hop and a frothing wall of dreamy sound. From the acoustic components this track seeds auras of peaceful wilderness, whilst still capturing the energy and buzz supplied by the subtle electronic tones.

Next up, spotted towhee by Melody Monroe opens with ambient whistles hidden behind a bassy, bold organ riff. Melody’s sultry vocal opens up the track as it breaks away into trance-like filter sweeps, and the energy of the organ rhythm continues to pick up the pace along with the percussion. Mountainous shapes loom throughout this music, which shows off contemporary, creative production skills alongside traditional songwriting talent. Get following for more!

Finally, Living Underwater by Marjen comprises four short discrete pieces in a similar vein, like nuggets of gold gleaming from the bed of mountain stream. The first section straight up infects us with the funk of a double bass and drum loop, peppered with climactic strings and whistles. Simple bass lines and fluttering echoes are present throughout each section as it is driven by delicate, captivating drum patterns. With all the karma of LTJ Bukem lazing in a sunny mountain rock pool, this spacious, ambient groove will have you laid back within seconds.

 


Addictive ambient, indie and trip hop for April 2016

snakepod1d

Welcome to the latest news from the indie electronica underground!

The current Maze Car demo Dub Croaky is still available for FREE DOWNLOAD at Soundcloud until a single release in the summer. Between now and then, Mazey is reworking the demo of Those Shallow Games – you can catch up with his developments on the blog as usual. Also this month, we heard a tweet that there is a film being made about the 1990s music scene in Glasgow – we strongly recommend following the development of Lost In France if you are a fan of indie music history!

Our playlist for April 2016 opens with No Sign On The Door by Kiwi producer Tom Cadillac. The track was apparently produced without the use of computers, and with minimal use of sequencers. Indeed, why would one impose such boundaries on creativity? The movement is based around a compelling groove with a loose and squashy feel, and various twangs and pings are dubbed in to give a hip-hop mood to this experimental ambient music. This is some cool stuff from the other side of the planet that’s well worth a follow.

Fools With Good Intentions by Polaroids Of Dead Lovers opens with a short synth intro before bursting into a lo-fi, jangling guitar riff underpinning Lasse Liisberg’s delicate, echoing vocal. There is a subtle minor-tinged darkness to the tune as the chorus approaches, and the breakdown of bass and synths swirls and reverberates to a half-tempo outro. Here, Lasse has created a track with a retro vinyl vibe which compliments the slightly creepy band name.

Finally this month, Dark Stars* also give us The Creeps: This track from producer DSC opens with a light, fluttering synth which is quickly stamped upon by a massive, lolloping bass drum and stack. The heavier synths dominate as they lumber, fizz and growl their way through this down-tempo trip-hop; and the fearful, quivering vocal line with droplets of theremin add more nervous tension to the mood. Check out the DSC stream for a wide variety of other production capabilities.

 


Festive Tones From Electronic Wonderland

Festive 3D Baubles

Hello again, and welcome to the latest VXLRCRDS update. We have recently noticed that the internet may be in need of some stitching, because it seems to be leaking vowels. Whether this is in homage to major acts, the effect of an increase in the price of column inches or just some l33t-punk way of dealing with predictive text, we just can’t tell. Either way, a trend that seemingly bubbled up from the tunnels of underground music has now trickled into Twitter handles and beyond. We are sure that history will eventually let us know what caused this, but until then, why not enjoy some more of the tunes we found this month …?

Maze Car is pleased to announce the first mix of his new demo – listen to Those Shallow Games now on Soundcloud! Lovingly assembled from squelchy 8-bit gizmos and subtle but funky breaks, a few more tweaks are expected before a single release in 2016 – we hope you enjoy this preview!

First on the playlist this month is Bloom Sequence by En Snares, which is the first from his current long player All Tomorrow’s Yesterdays. A heavy, syncopated beat thumps at the subtly-glitched pads beneath as they heave like a pit of molten lava. The weighty filter swell then drives the track forward as an auto-tuned vocal creeps in, and the menacing lyrics complement the depth of the tones at work. Aspects of glitch, dub and noise are all evident in this down-tempo and moody production, so it’s well worth exploring the rest of the album.

Next up is Aout-kush by Leto Nojey. This track is constructed from three primary stems, each of which raises and lowers its profile as the piece progresses. First is a delicate ambient guitar intro, treated with a subtle delay, which soon gives way to free-form beats accentuated by the whip of a hefty snare drum. Finally, a deep bass riff drives beneath the other instruments to assume control, whilst sweet acoustic cymbal tones provide extra freshness to this well-formed production.

The last tune this month is Gangsta Walk by Dubtone. This track is one of only two available from this Romanian producer of meaty dub. The unassuming build-up of piano and hi-hats lifts the aura before the tune plunges like a guillotine into a filthy, funky dub-step breakdown and howling acid drop. The brilliance of the track lies in its simple but tasty fx, and it would definitely form a great strobe-fueled filler in the club. We’re looking forward to more output from the Dubtone!

 

 

 


New music treats from the indie electronica underground

Voxel Zombie Controller

Spooky. It’s nearly Halloween, so the Christmas lights are going up in the neighbourhood. Here at Voxel Records, our tiny minds can only handle one capitalist festival at a time, and only then in chronological order. So we are keeping close to tradition by providing you with a loosely horror-related graphic. And some awesome tunes!

Maze Car has experienced some more tech problems recently. There has been a bit of a horror-show in the studio whilst porting to Windows (so-called) 10, and what seems like a tidal wave of updates to Apple devices. But after all this, the break-bit tune project continues with help from Donkey Kong and Pocket Simon …

First up on the playlist this month is Socio by Wing Tip which represents one of the more recent offerings from this UK producer. We are thrown straight into a shuffling house beat and a powerful, flowing chord progression, which is subsequently peppered with a haunting vocal stab. It gradually builds layers which generate subtle underlying melodies, and the ensemble swells into a turbulence of echoing synths until the drop. This interlude is groovy but brief, before we are launched once again into the wall of sound for a climax. It’s the funky shuffle of the beat that gives this track the edge, and the layers of timbre and melody strengthen the appeal.

Voyager by Exile Pots is one of many abstract, experimental and captivating creations from the Exile Pots back catalog that we discovered recently. The release is by no means new material (having originally been recorded some time ago), but it is new to our ears and maybe yours. The lonely chimes from deep space echo, loop and dance like stars and planetary orbits, and whilst the parent Randomiser EP explores various sonic themes, Voyager is a particularly sweet and gentle example. Inspirational stuff, and lots of it!

Alright by suiix is the result of an apparently international collaboration (Berlin and Sydney) led by Sarah Julienne. The song impresses with mellow, breathy vocals and is blessed with subtle strokes from some skilled guitar drops. The beats stumble and stutter along a trip-hop vein, with pitched percussion peeping through the mix as the creation develops into a cascading flurry of strings, wandering vocals and wild intertwining guitar solos. Altogether this demonstrates some innovative production and arrangements, so hopefully we can expect more from this group in the near future.

 


New Music September 2015

We have once again been ceaselessly searching the sea of electronica to find some excellent tunes to share with you. Also, we have started to generate some playlists, which should make it easier for you to listen to all the wonderful music we find. Check out our ever-growing collections on Spotify and Soundcloud for starters!

Maze Car continues to explore 8-bit chimes and break beats. It sounds like some interesting demo may emerge in the next few weeks – keep checking the Voxel Records demo stream to hear the results!

Here are some more great tunes we heard this month:

The Moon and I by Maebh: This track by Leeds-based composer Maebh and producer Nolasco crafts a dreamy atmosphere that turns gentleness up to eleven. The song tells the story of a lonely moonlit escape across the Asian wilderness, and the smooth arrangement of warm, jazz-tinged organic sounds with sweet meandering vocals is likely to leave you with goose bumps. If this track is anything to go by, we have no doubt these talented musicians will gain rapid popularity. Demand more!

Out of Breath by Baby Bats: This tune starts with a tinny muted filter, but soon builds into a bold, rolling and anthemic riff, rhythmically side-chained by heavily crushed drums. Organ timbres pepper the arrangement, accentuating the moody vocals before the track peaks with a rave-esque octave-leaping break-down. The music captures angelic darkness on a neat hook – hopefully there is a lot more to come from this innovative band.

Mutter by O-Tone: This German producer has a great collection of tunes, all of which ooze with a distinctive character. Mutter is driven by a plodding synth riff sculpted from pure vintage timbres, and the drums are sumptuously thick and close. These simple elements combine with a sinister, whispering vocal to create elektronische Musik with undertones of punk. Why not check out the rest of the o-tone catalog …?