The Sentinel

micro-blog from music lovers sharing their passion

Mark Henning – Engine X

Berlin’s Mark Henning has had a solid career as both a DJ and a producer. His recordings  are consistent and solid; with many that can easily be described as ‘brilliant’. His sound seems to have changed a tad since 2014, with him edging towards a tougher, more minimal style of techno that harkens back to the 90’s. It’s the sort of stuff you hear certain portions of the dance world term as ‘Proper Techno’; something that is thrown in the direction of acts like Sandwell District, James Ruskin, et al. That terminology is baffling as, what is ‘proper’? Not the original Hi-Tech soul of Detroit tracks such as ‘Nude Photo’ or ‘Time, Space, Transmat’? Not the 21st century groovy bangers by the likes of Heartthrob, Omar S, or Jeff Samuel? Not the pre 2014* work by Henning himself? Anyway, without digressing further with my own little quibble about the T word, The Sentinel presents a track from Henning’s recent EP (that’s also titled ‘Engine X’) that puts one in mind of the spectral Detroit sound peddled by the likes of Terrence Dixon. It’s a doozie; and proper.

*to be fair, the main difference in the work is he’s taken off the snare/Clap/whatever off of the second kick.

Rachel’s/Matmos – The Precise Temperature Of Darkness

Matmos reconstruct ‘Full On Night’ by Rachel’s, and take the sombre chamber Rock and clanging ambience and set it fizzing off into the Electrosphere. From 2000.

Love – The Red Telephone

Forever Changes had a dark, melancholic edge to it; suggesting that Love had become a little soured by the Psychedelic dream. The Red Telephone is a perfect example of the ‘tone’ the band had at this point.
So many lovely string arrangements on this album; and they are there in this song.
1967. Old.

Broadcast – Until Then

Beautiful, plaintive Hauntological post rock from the Brum acts 2000 album ‘The Noise Made By People’.

Seefeel – Plainsong (Sine Bubble Embossed Dub)

Seefeel were one of the bands who were put under the new journo label of ‘Post Rock’ (it was a British thing before Tortoise et al got lumbered with the tag). Ethereal and expanding upon the MBV shebang, they were ripe to be remixed by the burgeoning Ambient Techno artists who were like the Electronic flip side to all of this Post Rock malarky. On their 1993 EP ‘Pure/Impure’ they get both Richard D. James involved, as well as an act called Sinebubble (later to become better known as Autocreation). This is track is taken completely into the soundworld that the remixing team used to inhabit, and is a lovely reminder of the possibilities that presented themselves back in the mid 90’s.

 

Negativland – Backstage Pass

Another track from the bands 1987 album ‘Escape From Noise’; this time transporting the listener into a virtual zen garden.

Prince – Something In The Water (Does Not Compute)

A wonderful future funk track from Prince’s fifth studio album; 1982’s ‘1999’. This could be a contender for the tag ‘Minneapolis Techno’, and surely stands as one of the records that influenced the Motor City guys. Fantastic tune.

*This is a fan made video, just to let you know.

Dump – Dirty Mind

Dump was Yo La Tengo bassist James McNew, and in 2001 he did an album of Prince covers called ‘That Skinny Motherfucker With the High Voice?’. This, the best track on the album, is a fantastic rendition of a great Prince song.

Animal Collective – Another White Singer

Sometimes it’s hard to remember when Animal Collective were experimental, and this Residents=like track from their second album, 2001’s ‘Danse Manatee’ is a strong reminder. It’s recommended that one checks out the rest of the album if this tickles your fancy, as the band throw up shapes resembling everything from primitive Techno, through This Heat, to their friends and fellow travellers Black Dice. This was back when they felt as vital as the rest of the Brooklyn noughties scene.

Soundgarden – Drawing Flies

RIP Chris Cornell.

Laurence Johns

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