Seemingly born for loud play in a subdued and remote cavern somewhere, the two tunes contained on newcomer Nurve’s debut 12” for Pinch’s Tectonic label are guttural, deep and superbly refined. Blackened at the edges, ‘Wrong Number’ is positively scornful once it's unfurled into its techno march proper, but ‘Click Clak’ is a lot more playful rhythmically, bridging the gap between a grime-indebted producer like Mumdance and a precision outfit like Akkord quite perfectly.
Hailing from Australia, Another Dark Age delivers deranged electronix from Cured Pink. ‘As Enderie Nuatal’ is the most immediate track on this release, but its alarm bell rings, skewed, hyperactive rhythm and tortured vocal accompaniment sound like Mark E Smith on angel dust jamming with Richard H Kirk. ‘Jogjakarta Runny Dog’ doesn’t make any concessions towards the dancefloor and instead offers wave upon wave of deranged noise.
The product of a collaboration between a label boss (in this case Blank Mind kingpin, Sam Purcell) and one of its artists (in this case Dro Carey) should, in theory, yield results that epitomise the stylistic tilt of that label. And in the case of Mirror, it totally does with the four tracks full of industrial tones and driving percussion coursing a danceable flex that seems powered by machines that are on the cusp of retirement.
Holy hell is this the sound of Strange U/Boot Records percolating its sick way across the Atlantic and affecting our US bredren, or merely the sound of the US underground recovering the dark, dank depths of Show & AG's 'Goodfellas' all on their own reconnaissance? Either way — who cares! This is astonishing! Maniac laces together a truly dungeonesque mix of harsh neck-snapping snare and truly spooky sounds, blood-dripping on the dulcimer, strings and woodwind culled from the strangest lost Shaw Bros horror movie that actually doesn't exist but damn well should do. Superb stuff and making me want to hear way more from these (to me anyhoo) as yet unknown sonic perverts and degenerates. SICK BRUV.