MICHAEL CLAUS “MEMORY PROTECT” CS (SILK099) $7
Bay Area beacon Michael Claus operates from an overtly Pacific perspective in his house and techno constructs, shaping fog and bass along shorelines of elusive rhythm. Though active since 2004 he’s only in the past few years begun issuing tracks under his own name to the public domain, the latest collection of which goes furthest in embedding amorphous acid and cloud-soft synths into introspective coastal jack. Memory Protect maps eight hazed designs sourced from three years of work, misting the difference between movement and meditation, atmosphere and anticipation. Past collabs with Nackt hinted at a subtle touch for hypnosis and heightened sensory environment but here Claus captures his essence in its freest, most fluid state. Bodies of water, oceans of memory – what collects, continues. Recorded in San Francisco, 2014-2017. Mastered by Matt Tammariello.
INNER SELF “O.E. OUTSIDE EXPERIENCE” CS (SILK095) $7
New York producer Andrew Stefano’s freshest guise reflects the different headspace he was seeking last fall, shifting gears from his ongoing jungle fusion project, Trust Image. O.E. Outside Experience finds him flexing more muted and melancholic shades of broken beat, jazz techno, and high-stepping warehouse hybrids, inspired by notions of internalization and exploration – plus “a lot of Detroit shit.” The seven tracks traverse therapeutic contrasts of rhythm and reflection, solitude and celebration, crisp percussion offset with smeared synths, vaporous texture, and acidic bass. A decade of music making has honed Stefano’s instincts for motion, melody, and atmosphere, which he wields here with a distinct, dynamic touch. The Self speaks. Recorded at his home studio in Brooklyn on a mix of hardware and software in late 2016. Mastered by Matt Tammariello.
SPECIAL MEMORIAL EDITION
CHERUSHII “MEMORY OF WATER” CS (SILK085) $8
Released in advance of her forthcoming Far Away So Close 12” though recorded almost a year later, Memory Of Water pools together eight dazed Cherushii excursions through sci-fi opera house, digital dolpin-scapes, cloud city slowgrind, ultraviolet synthwave, and ambient quicksand. Distinctly her least DJ-dedicated collection, exploring all kinds of sprawls and sketches and planetarium textures not intended for dancefloor consumption – although ex-tour sister Ms. Maria Minerva does cameo on “Thin Line,” a prize pearl of Estonian discotheque-pop about “trembling on a tightrope caught between sweet seduction and mass destruction.” But in general this is Cherushii in research-and-development mode, vibing rich veins out of new wiring schemes, chilled champagne, and Mission District memories. A revealing cross-section of diverse designs, down its own side street. Mastered by Matt Tammariello.
HUBERT CLARKE JR “AL DENTE” 12″ (SILK083) $10
Impressionistic dub-house devotee Hubert Clarke Jr. fluctuates through several deviations of Sydney afterhours circuit specialties on his debut, Al Dente. Alternately wired and unwound, classic and contempo, vibed soul and lean house, the EP threads soft-focus funk into longform live voyages, naturalist emotion, dance as relaxed delirium. The vocal samples (“I’m not into this to be traveling around the world / I’m not into this to impress anybody”) evoke a mood of reflective idealism, spirits undiminished, hope in spite of it all. Dusted with memories and reveries of Heavenly, Picnic, and Mad Racket parties, hallucinated Omar-S demos, newer Sex Tags sides, and various nations under a groove, HJC’s 4 originals (plus a remix by Adelaide vibe squad MBM) feel like a beginning, a submerged energy swelling to the surface. Black vinyl 12 inches in stickered sleeves designed by Peta Farago with smiley meatball illustrations by John-Henry Pajak and Geordie Cargill. Mastered by Eric Hanson. Edition of 175.
SILK: THE FILM – DIGITAL RENTAL & PURCHASE
(via VHX) $1.99 / $6.99 / $7.99
SILK, the 100% Silk documentary and dance film, is available through VHX and Amazon Instant Video. Shot over two years, the film follows four acts from the label – LA Vampires, Ital, Magic Touch and Maria Minerva – across a lengthy 2012 tour of the UK, Europe and Russia. SILK chronicles the performances, environments, and scenes they passed through: congested underground Parisian clubs, motorcycle showrooms in Bristol, abandoned industrial lots in Moscow, afterhours Berlin compounds, re-purposed World War II gun towers in Hamburg, plus large international festivals (Distortion in Copenhagen, Sonar in Barcelona). The film is punctuated by staged dance sequences conceived, choreographed, and performed by Mecca Vazie Andrews and the Los Angeles Contemporary Dance Company. SILK premiered in 2013 at CPH:DOX in Copenhagen and subsequently screened at the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Denmark, as well as la Gaîte Lyrique in Paris. SILK was an official selection at the 2014 Amsterdam Dance Event, Melbourne International Film Festival, and Planete + Doc Film Festival in Poland. The SILK: DELUXE package includes the film as well as four exclusive live sets from the tour by each of the featured acts.