New Music from 4 top line names: Mathew Jonson – The Prophet, Bicep – Aura, Hodge – No Single Thing and Daphni – Face to Face. All naturally caught our eye due to the names involved but not necessarily our ear. There are no stinkers here, no point wasting words on a stinker. That said do all 4 pass our – ‘would we pay to own it on vinyl’, test?
Mathew Jonson – The Prophet
Opening with what can only be described as true analog noodling The Prophet suggests Mathew Jonson is in free form mode once again. For anyone who watched his FACTmag against the clock video will know that Mr Jonson lives in an Aladdin’s Cave of hardware, hardware that appears to bow to his every whim. And we’re guessing on this occasion that the legendary Prophet 5 is the latest bit of kit to come under his beguiling spell. Creating a masterfully elongated, yet melodic techno roller. Truth be told on first listen we were a little underwhelmed, a sentiment that proved to be ill placed. Hit play and let its subtle intensity win you over.
Rating 3.8 / 5.0
Bicep – Aura
Not content with finishing 8th in RA’s 2016 DJ poll Bicep have since announced a Live Show and debut LP via Ninja Tune. Aura is the first track to be taken from ‘Bicep – Bicep‘, and as you’d expect it’s unmistakably analog in both sound and texture. Rich pads, soaring hooks and four to the floor beats. To some it may seem overly obvious in tone, but like an 80/90’s Schwarzenegger in his prime, their flex will inevitably win you over.
Hodge – No Single Thing [Livity Sound]
Hmmm, this is a difficult one. We have admired Hodge since his fantastic 2013 Punch Drunk releases; Resolve and Bells. And have since purchased on vinyl his Body Drive EP. However amongst the brilliance there is the occasional indifferent shrug of the shoulders in relation to some of his beats. This maybe because we’re generally indifferent to beats that sound, well… like beats and not much else. And maybe it’s also because we know what a Hodge record can sound like if he strays into more melodic climbs. Interestingly this EP is a juxtaposition of both these styles with our pick unsurprisingly the more melodic B-Side ‘Light Waves’.
Rating Light Waves 3.7/5.0
Daphni – Face to Face
To close things out this week Dan Snaith aka Caribou aka Daphni is back with a new record, 5 years on from the last. Can’t believe that Jialong was 5 years ago! Face to Face is the lead single from Daphni’s upcoming FabricLive 93 mix. A mix that essentially doubles as Dan Snaith’s second LP as Daphni, with 23 of the 27 tracks all being self penned. Face to Face is stripped back and funky with a vocal loop and bassline designed to loop you into submission. It’s not quite ‘Yes, I Know‘ or ‘Ye Ye’ but it has enough in the tank to suggest that FabricLive 93 will be well worth waiting for.
In conclusion we would most likely purchase all four on vinyl. That said if cash is tight next month, post our annual Glastonbury pilgrimage, then we would settle for just the Mathew Jonson record.