Sunday, May 22, 2022

Silent Universe - Gravity

Ignis Fatum: 2015

Another promising space-themed side-project that seems to have stalled. Why do I keep stumbling into these? Okay, my sample-size is small, but I'm sure if I kept digging deeper and deeper into all these niche scenes featuring artists with multiple aliases, I'd come across more. I just don't want to keep getting my hopes up, is all. The gap between Distant System releases was excruciating enough, and I needn't put myself through more of that on the regular. Oh, but they tempts us, they do...

I should be thankful The Infinity Coordinates isn't the lone Silent Universe album out there. Yeah, it's been half a decade since Pavel Malyshkin debuted the project on Cryo Chamber, but he's had plenty 'nuff on his plate with continual explorations of all things cold and remote as Ugasanie. Like, imagine if you were a hardcore fan of his other side-project, Polterngeist. That one didn't even get the Cryo bump, mostly relegated to self-releases, and remaining in mothballs for as long as Silent Universe has. Polterngeist did have one item out on Ignis Fatum, the minuscule Belarus net-label that housed the first two Silent Universe albums, so there's that at least.

Was this project started to support Ignis Fatum? Like, I can see Pavel wanting to help the label, though many dark ambient producers from eastern Europe did contribute to their debut compilation Inception (Dronny Darko, Aseptic Void, Symbiosis, to name just a few I'm familiar with via Cryo Chamber). There was even a couple Ugasanie tracks on Ignis Fatum collections, but for whatever reason, Pavel felt this was an opportunity to explore other sounds away from his most successful alias. Fair enough. When your most prominent work gets tied to a certain style, it's harder to creatively branch out. Here's a fresh name for a fresh label, and see what may come of those stellar winds.

Gravity was the second of the two Silent Universe releases on Ignis Fatum (so sayeth Discoggian release dates), and kinda' feels like the more standard of them. Yep, it's another dark space ambient LP themed around singularities, black holes, and all the cataclysmic events that occur at the bleeding edge of observable physics. Plus a pair of tracks titled Dark Energy and Dark Matter, in case you're feeling saucy about exotic astrophysics. Musically, such as it is, we're in Lustmordian drone territory, all ominous atonal moods and sounds. Subtle hints of melodic harmony occasionally emerges in some of the seven tracks (Dark Energy, Event Horizon, Among The Dead Stars), while others seek to simply crush your sense of self (Black Hole, Hubble Radius).

As mentioned, it's all familiar territory where Stygian cosmic drone is concerned. Even knowing how adept Pavel is at this style, I was quite surprised at how encompassing Gravity sounded on my headphones while dozing. Had to take them off at one point to make sure I wasn't hearing it from my regular speakers, as I'm sure drones that loud would wake the neighbours.

Saturday, May 21, 2022

Lucette Bourdin - Glimpses, Vol. 1

Dark Duck Records/Fantasy Enhancing: 2017/2021

A couple Lucette albums were released after her passing, but so shortly after, they were likely already in her vaults (such as they were), just needing a little extra attention. This one though, came much later, half a decade later in fact. Was there some yet undiscovered trove of music from Ms. Bourdin out there, that took so long to be unearthed? Mm, not really, no, at least no more so than any of her works remained relatively obscure. Rather, this is a 'remix' album of Rising Fog, handled by Dark Duck Records regular (head honcho?) Stephen Philips. Fair enough, but seems a little odd to include it within a box-set of Lucette Bourdin's works. Was it included just to hit that magical twenty CDs cap? Guess it makes more sense than if they were to include the 2014 retrospective CD, Retrospective, in this Retrospective Box Set (2005-2017).

Still, if you didn't have your handy-dandy Discogs cheat sheet on hand (or are a hardcore Lucette Bourdin fan), you wouldn't know Glimpses, Vol. 1 was a remix album, at least not as presented here. Nothing on the CD's slip case mentions as such, no additional credit attributed to Mr. Philips, just the same track list as the Rising Fog CD. And yeah, if you listened to the whole box-set in one fell, chronological swoop, you may have noticed some similarities between the two, such that you'd make the assumed link without realizing the track lists were identical. Also, that'd be mighty impressive, making such a connection between CD6 and CD20, with that much droning ambient music in between!

Come to think of it, how does one remix droning ambient anyhow? No, I'm not talking about turning it into a trance track or a tech-house track or a darkcore nu-glitch complextrostep track. I mean, remixing ambient into ambient. Like, I know it's doable, otherwise I wouldn't have Glimpses, Vol. 1 in my hands, but it still strikes me as a dubious proposition. I've heard 'alternates' and 'versions' of ambient pieces, though usually composed by the same artist on their own work. Unless the internet has somehow pulled an unnecessarily strange hoax, I'm pretty certain Lucette Bourdin and Stephen Philips are different individuals.

It also means I had to interrupt my planned 'go into every CD in this box-set cold' for a basis of comparison between this and Rising Fog. Okay, that's not such a big deal. I'm honestly just kinda' dawdling at this point because there isn't much I have to say about Glimpses, Vol. 1. These tracks definitely are different compared to the originals, in that they feel more stretched, layered, and drone-tone as ambient music. The Rising Fog pieces were already rather mellow to begin with, but had some progression of melody among them. Stephen mostly strips that out, melody losing itself in dense layers of reverb and timbre. As ambient goes, it's all quite nice and relaxing, if a bit formless. The concept interests me more than the execution.

Monday, May 16, 2022

Parental Advisory - Ghetto Street Funk

MCA Records: 1993

The notion that Atlanta hip-hop didn't break out until OutKast and Goodie Mob dropped their debut albums is so ingrained in public discourse, folks don't realize that's not quite accurate. True, Southernplayisticadillacmuzik and Soul Food put the Georgian city on the map, even rescuing The South from general assumptions it was nothing but dirty bass music. There was an act that beat them to it though, dropping an album before those two LPs, also produced by Organized Noize, all part of the same Dungeon Family conglomerate. Yet I never see any namedrops for Parental Advisory (P.A.).

It's not like they were completely unknown, having some minor chart success at the turn of the century when southern hip-hop started its national ascent. For all intents, Mello, Big Reece, and K.P. should be on the tongues of far more people than 'those in the know'. Was the shadow cast by OutKast and Goodie Mob just too large to emerge from? Perhaps, but there may be another reason for P.A.'s Ghetto Street Funk going so overlooked when talking up seminal Atlanta rap albums: it doesn't really sound like a southern record.

Which is understandable, the 808-heavy, dirty south style the dominate sound around, and still frowned upon by the Very Important markets on the East and West coasts. If you wanted to come in with something more respectable in the early '90s, you had to sound like those regions, and that's what Ghetto Street Funk does, Organized Noize coming in hard with the jazz sample-heavy, combative Eastcoast boom, almost any trace of their Georgian origin absent. As for the rappers, Big Reece sounds like a heavier, baritone Chuck D, while Mello comes off like an aggressive Slick Rick, and both bring plenty of energy to the beats, keeping you at least engaged with their flows, if not their lyrical content. (I don't think K.P. does much, if any rapping on this album, mostly sticking to DJ scratching and such – it was still an important component to early '90s hip-hop!)

Topic-wise, P.A. mostly stick to the usual gangsta rap tropes, going on about how hard they are, how hard the street life is, how hard they'll hit back at any other crews that try to step up (or something). It's hard denying a lot of this can come of cliche, and may have back when no one knew much of anything about Atlanta hip-hop. Like, I had no idea of their origin, just knowing them from their one single on the CB4 soundtrack. That it would take OutKast's more laid-back vibe (and Organized Noize stripping the aggro back for that duo) to truly establish a distinct southern style cannot be overstated.

Thus Ghetto Street Funk remains an underground gem, stuck at a crossroad of changing trends. I can't say it deserved more recognition for what it does, but it does it as well as any early gangsta rap album out of the east. Worth a listen, if you fancy the stuff.

Sunday, May 15, 2022

The Bug - Fire

Ninja Tune: 2021

Not that The Bug has never maintained a particular vibe throughout his career, but man, do you ever gotta' be in A Mood to enjoy Fire. I'm not even sure if 'enjoyment' is capable here. For sure one could connect or 'get hype' to it, but the apocalyptic tone this album maintains is relentless, almost no hope of rescue in sight. Kevin Martin certainly is no stranger to painting portraits of urban decay, but always tempered with moments of revelation and salvation, an escape hatch available should you be fortunate enough to find it. Not so with Fire, and while I've indulged music of the utterly depressive kind (oh hi, dark ambient!), this seems like quite the extreme turn for The Bug. What could possibly have inspired Mr. Martin to craft such an album like this?

If the opening monologue from Roger Robinson is anything to go by, it was the pandemic. I don't know what Kevin Martin's thoughts about lockdowns and masking and vaccines and whatnot are, but regardless, during the period he made this album, he seemed to envision a near future where everything that could go wrong from this event does. And in a weird way, it's honestly already made Fire a bit dated. Yeah, things looked uncertain and bleak for a while there, but in just half a year after this album dropped, we were already doing are dogged best to get back to 'normal living'. Whether we were premature in doing so remains up for some debate, but there's little doubt the Worst Case Scenario portrayed in Fire has practically no chance of coming to pass. It's like an '80s Cold War movie predicting nuclear holocaust occurring during the '90s, but watching it in the 21st Century.

Speaking of, first proper track Pressure opens as though hearing the blasting klaxxon of the oncoming hellfire, frequent Bug collaborator Flowdan dropping his usual grime bars over distorted bass tones. And it's pretty much the same thing for the rest of the album. Yeah, there's plenty of other MCs on hand, all lending a variety of flows, though no Warrior Queen, sadly. I rather like Nazamba's utterly ragged and raw tone in War, perfectly befitting such a grimy, marching track. Manga Saint Hilare in Bang and High Rise also stood out to me, for no other reason than his higher pitch made for a prominent contrast to The Bug's omnipresent low-ends. Oh, and Daddy Freddy, just because his pure dancehall Ganja Baby seems like such a leftfield peppy tune among all the surrounding despair.

Despair, yeah, that's certainly a vibe on Fire. While The Bug's usual aggression is present, it's also often muffled, as though the righteous call-to-arms is forever stomped out and quashed. Not to mention that ever-present wailing wind, as though blowing dirt and grit through the hollowed remains of urban centres. As I said, certainly an album for when you're in a particular mood, and you don't want to get out of either.

Wednesday, May 11, 2022

Technical Itch - Find Your Darkness

Tech Itch Recordings: 2020

It took over two decades, but Mark Caro finally released a proper second Technical Itch album. Yeah, yeah, he's put out several Progression Threat and Digitally Ascended LPs, not to mention so many singles that you'd need a multi-CD box-set to house all the music within. Those were all for tracks though, the sort of listening experience that, while fine as a collection of tunes, still lack that all important thematic flow the best albums have. And I know Mr. Caro is capable of it, his debut Tech Itch album Diagnostics still a mesmerizing assault of darkstep business to this day. Speaking of, when might we see a re-issue of that record? Surely rescuing it from Moving Shadow legal limbo shouldn't be this last longing?

I'm sure Mark has his reasons for not returning to the album format for so long, chief among them there wasn't much need to. He was sustaining a tidy career through singles, all the while maintaining his own labels in Penetration Records and Tech Itch Recordings. I wonder though, if the flurry of proper albums from the likes of Doom Poets, Voyage, and Brakken coming out on the latter print inspired him some. Heck, was he maybe involved in the production of those? He definitely was part of Biostacis, a mini-group that enjoyed a semi-revival in 2015. Whichever way you want to frame it, bottom line is, hey, new Technical Itch album!

And nothing states this is a Proper Album than an ambient intro. Following that, Modified Code drops us right back into familiar Technical Itch territory, crusty aggressive 2-step action with wailing synth backdrops and paranoid vocal samples. Stand Down brings on the Amen breakcore business, all the while maintaining the cybernetic sonic horror Mark's always been ace at.

All well and good, the production top notch, but what if you're kinda' yearning for something a little more retro, from the early days of darkstep? Can't deny the titular cut has my Diagnostics nostalgia triggers flaring. The 2-step and rolling bassline sound like it could have come from that album, and there's acid! 'Member when Technical Itch included a hardcore acid track on Diagnostics? Ooh, I 'member! Elsewhere, B28 and Machine Ghosts gets down on some basic groove ridin' swagger, while Alien gets all moody and minimal. Well, about as minimal as you'd expect from a Technical Itch cut. And speaking of ol' school, The Eagle's grimy vibe definitely has me feeling those classic Ed Rush & Optical vibes. Oh, you want only the latest technological advancements in your darkstep? Uh, first thing, that's not really what the Tech Itch label's about. But sure, Violent Instinct, The Angels and Belief go about as fuckin' hard as this genre allows without crossing the scenes.

A triumphant return to albums for Technical Itch, then? Ah, it's good, but not Diagnostics great. Find Your Darkness is plumb for choice cuts that are nicely sequenced, but lacks the whirlwind ride of narrative flow Tech Itch's debut had.

Thursday, May 5, 2022

Ambidextrous - Fifty Years Of October

Fantasy Enhancing: 2021

Kind of weird to think of Fifty Years Of October is something of a capper on two decades of music making from Ambidextrous. Technically longer, but his 2001 album Erosion was the one that got a spiffy 20th anniversary vinyl re-issue, not 1998's Soundscape, so for all intents, I'll assume that's where Nick feels his music career properly starts. Still, my head has difficulty wrapping around that time span, since I only came into contact with Ambidextrous when he made his debut on Carpe Sonum Records (missing out on a CD copy of Geek Mythology notwithstanding, darn it all). Right, right, musicians have plenty of back catalogue existing long before a single Canadian discovers them, but even his Bandcamp is sparse on pre-2010 material. Not Soundscape though, that one's available.

Actually, I'm not entirely sure what Fifty Years Of October is all about. Previous albums from Ambidextrous had a clearer theme, mostly an interest in science stuff, so I assume that's the case with this one as well. Maybe something to do with topography or cartography? That certainly looks like a coastline on the cover-art, though where I haven't the foggiest. I kinda' want to assume the Russian Arctic, what with Nick being from Russia and all. I feel like having more insight into it would provide me with a better understanding of what theme runs through this album, as I struggle to find one. Or maybe there isn't any theme, Fifty Years Of October just a collection of tunes he happened to kick out for a follow-up to Echoes Of Science on Fantasy Enhancing.

Pros And Contras start things off, and it's familiar Ambidextrous vibes right from the jump. A mostly chill, dubby mood gently cruises along, synth and string pads casually guiding us while subtle acid burbles and charming leads spritely dance about. A pleasant number, as expected from Nick, but as mentioned, doesn't impart anything deeper than that upon this person. Follow-up Detour De Force initially goes a little more mechanical, then introduces a synth lead that has me thinking of some cheap '80s movie, its star wandering slummy streets in a sort of synthwave noir setting. Huh, can't say I was expecting that, especially with rhythms and effects that remain in ambient techno's lane.

Speaking of, Fozamo and Steamroller Maneuver definitely gets up on that vintage IDM business, while Bipolar Lights and Stellar Telegraph have themselves a bit of a classic Fax+ freak-out at their peaks. Come to think of it, I'm getting some sense of ol' school Spacetime Continuum out of this, which shouldn't be too surprising considering Ambidextrous' sound has always leaned a little retro. And while on the topic of sea biscuits, Fifty Years Of October closes out with Shell Life, all submerged ambient dub groove and floating soundscapes, with plenty of bleepy vibes throughout. A very relaxing way to take us out. Just wish I knew how it tied into the rest of the album, beyond existing for its own sake.

Monday, May 2, 2022

Various - Fabric 69: Sandwell District

Fabric: 2013

I've feigned surprise over some of the Fabric CDs that ended up on the used market, but I cannot deny legitimate shock at this one. I'll grant recollection's a bit hazy nearly a decade on, but wasn't Sandwell District's contribution to the series hailed as one of the 'crowning achievements' or something? For sure I remember a lot of hype and promo surrounding it because, goddamn, how are you gonna' forget cover art looking like this? Almost as striking as that one with the octopus on a dude's head. More than that though, most of the major 'zines covered fabric 69, so how could one not just assume Sandwell District was a Very Important conglomerate in the world of techno?

Actually, I'm not sure how accurate that is. Yeah, the label developed a feverish cult following throughout the '00s, but you can say that about any ol' techno label. The main players within the group – Karl O'Connor, Peter Sutton, David Sumner, and Juan Mendez – had all been involved in '90s minimalist techno one way or another (aliases Regis and Function the most famous of the lot). They certainly cultivated a particular sound on their label, keeping the classic, cavernous minimal style alive while other scenes became obsessed with Ableton micro-edits and white noise wank. Then, as Ostgut Ton overtook everything, Sandwell District looked primed to join them as brothers-in-arms. Except they disbanded soon after, everyone going their separate ways, some retreating from the spotlight altogether. And hoo, what a more perfect way to crystallize that cult status than that, eh?

Maybe that's why I've seen mostly lukewarm responses to fabric 69. Fans of Sandwell District wanted an exclamation mark on their legacy, a triumphant modus operani that solidified everything they held noble and true about the group. What they got instead was an interesting minimal techno mix that's more about audio space and head journeys than anything worth rinsing out at 4am on a Sunday morning. At least, that's what I assume fans of Sandwell District wanted.

But enough of that. What's important here is what I think of fabric 69. Me, someone who really only knows of the Sandwell District legacy in passing mention. It's a'ight, I guess. I can't be certain this was the case, but it sounds like each member got to have their own little mini-set within the greater whole. Things tend to reach a narrative mini-conclusion a few times as the CD plays, resetting shortly after for a slightly different techno build while retaining a stylistic Sandwell vibe throughout.

Some tracks like Mary Velo's Detune, Carl Craig's Darkness, and Untold's Motion The Dance work as centrepieces while bits and pieces of others (too many to list) are used as the mixing glue linking everything together. It honestly took me a couple listens for this one to sink in, so I can understand how fabric 69 may have been initially off-putting for some. Even such that they'd be willing to offload it for a fiver.

Sunday, May 1, 2022

Enter Your Convoluted Star Trek Episode Title Here

So I ...didn't have anything significant happen to me this past month. Wait, has the world actually decided to pause, even for a little bit?

Not really, no, but as with all things with no clear end in sight, a lot now feels like it's settled into a 'new normal'. Or a 'temporary normal', I guess. Do we really want to go back to the 'old normal' though? When ever was that, come to think of it? For sure there are periods within the last few decades I'd like to think were 'normal', but probably more due to our sense of being climbatizing to whatever the latest shake-up from the old paradigm created. We just had so much come at us in such a couple short years that our ability to adapt to changing conditions was thrown seriously askew. Maybe we're growing better equipped at dealing with it now, in a sort of "Come at me, bro!" sort of way. Who knows, but I can at least say, in my tiny corner of the world, things haven't felt quite so hectic.

And yet, no new ACE TRACKS playlist this month. Hey, though my rate of reviews still isn't as high as it could be, this isn't all my fault. Sometimes the material I'm covering simply isn't available on the usual streaming services, and this is one of those times, well over 50% as such. Some of it, okay, I understand, DJ mixes coming out long ago, and difficult to secure streaming rights to. The Grid's Evolver though? You can find everything else from that duo on Deezer (and Spotify), but not their biggest ever album? Unless they're holding onto it for a spiffy 30th Anniversary re-issue, it don't make sense.

So yeah, nothing else to say in this update. Onwards then, Raving Soldiers, to whatever splendours and horrors await us in the coming months.

Saturday, April 30, 2022

Various - Fabric 58: Craig Richards Presents The Nothing Special

Fabric: 2011

This is a strange edition. Oh, not the music within, most of it serviceable deep techno and tech-house as you'd expect from a resident of the Fabric nightclub. It's not even odd, if a little self-serving, that Craig Richards would have multiple sets in the fabric series. He kicked things off with Fabric 01, and naturally concluded it with Terry Francis and Keith Reilly in the triple-disc Fabric 100. Relatively early in fabric's lifespan, he used his Tyrant alias to do a double-disc set for Fabric 15. I don't think there was another 2CD edition of fabric or FabricLive after (centennial volume notwithstanding), so clearly a format the Fabric faithful weren't keen on. How nice of Mr. Richards taking that fumble with Tyrant.

Still, an artist using different aliases for different Fabrics wasn't unheard of. Heck, using a Fabric set as a promotional springboard for another project was almost expected, especially if someone had an album, label, or club night to launch. Such seems to be the case with Fabric 58, The Nothing Special a label that Craig Richards was set to premiere later that year. Or was it something else, and simply became a label? I'm not entirely sure, finding little info about this CD a decade on. Something about Craig wanting to create a specific night at Fabric where he'd have to DJ around live acts, but I hear little in this set that reflects such a purpose, Fabric 58 going as it means to go on in the hands of Mr. Richards.

All this, yet that's still not what boggles my mind about Fabric 58. No, what truly astounds me about this CD is how it disrupts the then-current cover art theme! Fabric always featured a trilogy of unique art that never had much of anything to do with the DJ involved. Sometimes you lucked out with cool silhouette urban art or abstract drawings, other times you'd be saddled with the guy with an octopus on his head. At this point in fabric's timeline (volumes 57 to 60) , it was people in striking-coloured bodysuits being assaulted by similarly coloured technology. Hey, such bodysuits were trendy back then, and if nothing else, one of the more memorable runs of cover art in fabric's history. But right smack in the middle of it, interrupting the sequence and triggering all sorts of OCD, comes Craig Richards' stark black 58. What, does he think he runs Fabric or something?

Okay, okay. The mix. Like I said, it's basically a deep tech-house outing, with a slant towards Detroitism. He throws in a liberal amount of '90s tunes from the likes of Two Lone Swordsmen, G-Man, Eco Tourist, Joel Mull, and Johnny Fiasco, and unsurprisingly are more interesting than the upfront material. I find Craig takes a bit too long to warm things up, nor does it shift any higher than mid-gear, but compared to the occasional dry sterility of fabric's previous half-decade, this one nicely bumps once it gets going.

Friday, April 29, 2022

Fabric 55: Shackleton

Fabric: 2010

Another year, another mini-splurge on Fabric CDs on the cheap. While it's doubtful I'll ever get them all, even the thirty-plus currently sitting on my shelves seems like a paltry amount compared to what's out there. Heck, I could expand that by ten more CDs, if I wanted to buy another bundle of ones available for under ten bones. Despite the series having ended, there's two-hundred releases under its banner, many of which are far from ever reaching the pricey collector's market

I bring this up because I find it rather bizarre that despite my generally restrictive rules in getting a Fabric CD (must be dirt cheap on Amazon), I've landed upon yet another 'artist' album in the series. Just how many of these are there? Ricardo Villalobos' entry was the most infamous, in that it was the one that broke that barrier in the first place. I remember there being a bit of a stir when Omar S did the same. I didn't even know Daphni (aka: Caribou; aka: Manitoba; aka: Mister Snaith; aka: Dan) had one until I got it. No doubt it takes a bit of gumption to even do such a thing when followers of Fabric expect DJ mixes featuring multiple artists on a single disc, not an excuse to hawk your own productions.

Of course, the argument can be made that some producers and DJs have a style that's so uniquely their own that doing an 'artist' album is about the only way they could do a Fabric set justice. It's certainly a worthy point when it comes to Shackleton. When he was still technically part of the dubstep lexicon, his style was far more tribal and primal compared to his contemporaries, quickly establishing himself as among the freshest sounding artists of the '00s UK bass scene.

Even after proper demarcations formed following those Wild West years, Shackleton still didn't fit tidily into any specific sub-genre. How, then, could he be expected to do a traditional DJ mix for Fabric if there were so few other cats making similar music he could rinse out? Still, the series wanted prominent names, so let him do it his way, even if the results are basically another artist album from the man. It's not like he had many under his belt by 2010 anyway.

And yep, fabric 55 is definitely a Shackleton set. Lots of afro rhythms, lots of tribal drumming, lots of minimalist dub, almost all fresh material (older joints like Hypno Angel and Massacre crop up), and in no hurry to get the party moving. I know my go-to comparisons for this sort of sound is Sandoz or Rapoon, but for some reason Muslimgauze at his more entrancing is the name that keeps cropping up in my mind in this outing. If Bryn Jones had been inspired by northern Africa rather than Arabia that is. And less about the industrial noise. Okay, it's not a perfect comparison, but I didn't want to again namedrop my old standbys.

Things I've Talked About

...txt 10 Records 16 Bit Lolita's 1963 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969 1970 1971 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2 Play Records 2 Unlimited 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021 20xx Update 2562 3 Loop Music 302 Acid 36 3FORCE 3six Recordings 4AD 6 x 6 Records 75 Ark 7L & Esoteric 808 State A Perfect Circle A Positive Life A-Wave a.r.t.less A&M Records A&R Records Abandoned Communities Abasi Above and Beyond abstract Ace Trace Ace Tracks Playlists Ace Ventura acid acid house acid jazz acid techno acoustic Acroplane Recordings Adam Ellis Adam Freeland Adham Shaikh ADNY Adrian Younge adult contemporary Advanced UFO Phantom Aegri Somnia AEI Music Aes Dana Afrika Bambaataa Afro-house Afterhours Agoria Aidan Casserly Aira Mitsuki Airwaves Ajana Records Ajna AK1200 Akshan album Aldrin Alex Smoke Alex Theory Alice In Chains Alien Community Alien Project Alio Die All Saints Alphabet Zoo Alphaxone Altar Records Alter Ego alternative rock Alucidnation Ambelion Ambidextrous ambient ambient dub ambient techno Ambient World Ambientium Ametsub Amon Amarth Amon Tobin Amplexus Anabolic Frolic Anatolya Andrea Parker Andrew Heath Androcell Anduin Andy C anecdotes Aniplex Anjunabeats Annibale Records Anodize Another Fine Day Antendex anthem house Anthony Paul Kerby Anthony Rother Anti-Social Network Aoide Aphasia Records Aphex Twin Apócrýphos Apollo Apple Records April Records Aqua Aquarellist Aquascape Aquasky Aquila Arcade Architects Of Existence Arcturus arena rock Arista Armada Armin van Buuren Arpatle Arts & Crafts ASC Ashtech Asia Asian Dub Foundation Astral Engineering Astral Projection Astral Waves Astralwerks AstroPilot AstroPilot Music Asura Asylum Records ATCO Records Atlantic Atlantis atmospheric jungle Atomic Hooligan Atomine Elektrine Atrium Carceri Attic Attoya Audion AuroraX Autechre Autistici Autumn Of Communion Auxiliary Avantgarde Avatar Records Aveparthe Avicii Axiom Axs Axtone Records Aythar B.G. 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