XantharmonyYOCD13 CD Oct 2022
Artwork by Mon.
Mastered by Dan Mumberson.Buy
Returning from a self-imposed musical hiatus, Silvia Kastel materialises on YOUTH with a long-incubated follow-up to her 2017 ‘Air Lows’ album for Blackest Ever Black. It’s an oddly rendered trio of soundscapes somewhere in the vicinity of Madalyn Merkey, Lucy Duncombe or Maja SK Ratkje – beatless – and far from straightforward.
Inspired by Toshiya Sukegawa’s Bioçic Music series, which Kastel describes as both calming and eerie, ‘Mantide’ manifests a mix of raw directness and conceptual subtext. Featuring loud birdsong recorded outside her Berlin apartment, Kastel foregrounds her subjects against strafing choral motifs in a way that refuses to inhabit new age environmentalism. It’s all genuinely unsettling – on paper it reads like a calming listen, but instead plays into something much more angsty, and hard to define.
On ‘Spoons’ Kastel takes pointers from electronic music pioneer Carl Stone (who is supposedly working on his own version of the track for future release), as well as “Îles Resonantes”, a short documentary about Éliane Radigue. It’s a slowly keening smear of quizzical chords and ribboning tendrils that wrap up into what she intends to “sound and feel like a long goodbye hug…surging and overdriven at times, quiet and soft at others… “
Xantharmony closes the EP on its weirdest flex, constructed entirely out of layered and processed vocal elements. It recalls Lucy Duncombe’s clipped theatric melodrama and Maja Ratkje’s more guttural vocal acrobatics, but follows its own hackle-raising logic, acting more like a cue, or trigger, for sudden and overwhelming feelings of unease.
And in our book – that’s high endorsement for continued, closer listening.
NW / HRY15TH 12" May 2022
A1 Nuclear Winter
B1 Heavy Rain
Rusty shanks of dubstep and UKGristle from undisclosed operators on YOUTH, sustaining the label’s swagger after ace drops by FUMU, Authentically Plastic/Emma DJ & Toma Kami, and Hajj already in 2022
Behind a mask of anonymity, NW/HR deploy a pair of hard-bitten cuts that sound like they were unearthed from the bottom of a bin circa 2003, throwing down fetid chunks of shower face halfstep and squashed 2-step swivel that was seemingly too dank, even for the early dubstep/grime cranks. We could be here all day speculating on the producer’s provenance – is it one, or even two, or more sets of mitts, on the desk? – but we’ll suffice it to say they slap in the club.
‘Nuclear Winter’ steps in first with something like an early Skream or Slaughter Mob workout, all oxidised snares and grim, skulking South London atmosphere, nowt flash or clever, but ruggedly rude and sopping with dirt for the dance. ‘Heavy Rain’ arrives in a vein of proto- or primordial Burial styles, depressing the tempo to a thuggish hulk accentuated with groaning bass and sore blue synth pads bound to bring a rictus shower face to OG steppers.
Enter The AnimaY13TH LP Mar 2022
FUMU finally unveils that long-promised new album for YOUTH following last year’s ‘Almost, Never, Nearly Where?’ collection of sawn-off oddballs, presenting a throbbing pouch of productions that run the gamut from Bunker-style red-liners to ruffkut dancehall, sore electronics and a couple of brilliantly fucked vocal cuts that are prob the finest screwed-pop drills to have emerged from this city in years.
A longtime spar of Turinn (Modern Love) and Richard Harris (Sockethead) as part of the Return to Zero gang, FUMU has been teasing skills for the last half-decade or so on a couple of deadly CD’s and one destroyed bashment 45 inspired as much by manc dancefloor undercurrents as the Bladerunneresque landscape of his formative Teesside stomping grounds. ‘Enter The Anima’ is his debut vinyl longplayer, and delivers on keenest expectations in wild style, looking back at formative and fractious asphalt-grained dance music archetypes while pacing toward a new in-between mode that fizzes with too much energy to stay in one place for more than a minute.
The palette is prob gonna be familiar to anyone who caught any of those previous bullets, but where it deviates is where FUMU has us most gripped, starting at the end of the line with the mad ‘Kiss Down’ – easily the most progressive and brilliant thing here, framing Zula’s incredible vox around angular, slowed down madness that feels like a dismantled antithesis to hyperpop, deployed at a 70bpm crawl for ultimate unease, ending abruptly before it’s properly even begun. ‘Forge Tides Of Fire Inside’ also plays with the form, this time re-imagining a booty flex spun off-centre, sort of miami bass via the nastiest Bomb 20 DHR missile, before “I Was Sunk Up To My Neck” frames a heads-down skank with classic manc-synths like some hidden cut off that 0161 comp.
And actually that’s not a bad frame of reference for the album generally, a sort of wildly shredded update on signature manc electronic/club styles, except endlessly more fractious and moody – and all the better for it.
Drag Me Into The VoidYOCD12 CD Mar 2022
- Drag Me Into The Void
- Reverse Catharsis
- Drag Me Into The Void (Euphoria’s Death edit)
Key Parisian artist and Dawn Records CEO, Hajj disintegrates ambient, trance and rap instrumentals on a lush turn for Youth following his 2020 solo debut for BFDM – RIYL DJ Lostboi/Malibu, Ronce, AYYA, Burial.
Highly regarded around these ways for introducing the likes of Ronce on his Dawn Records label – with whom he collaborated on the ‘Aquatics’ LP – and a string of ace compilation cuts, visual artist-turned-producer Hajj renders his most ephemeral yet affective conception of a negative ecstasy in ‘Drag Me Into the Void’. The three tracks reprise the billowing introspection of his 2020 debut for Brothers From Different Mothers , ‘Dédicace À Personne’ with a subtly refined palette and sound design, dematerialising traces elements of late ‘90s trance and up-to-the-second trap into thee gauziest, gently buoyant ambient space.
The trio of tax slot neatly into YOUTH’s cross section of contemporary bedroom/living room/imaginary club space with a breezy mutability. ‘Drag Me Into the Void’ appears in subtly alternate mixes, bathing a trance siren vocal refrain in anaesthetising reverb and vapourized traces of emo-rap drums with a sublime sense of deferred gratification on the original, while nipping/tucking to more elusive allure in the ‘Euphoria’s death edit’. In the middle ‘Reverse Catharsis’ augments the syrupy ambient rap aesthetic with more pronounced woodblock percussion hinting at Burial hitting the downstroke, and lit up with killer, trancey hyper-blooz synth plucks.
Strakka / Julia BashmoreY16TH 12" Feb 2022
A1 Authentically Plastic – Strakka
B1 Emma DJ & Toma Kami – Julia BashmoreBuy
YOUTH serve the club with heavyweight chops by Kampala’s Authentically Plastic and Paris’ Emma DJ & Toma Kami to set the label’s 2022 schedule on the bad foot.
Scanning the contemporary dancehall for wayward mutations, ‘Y16TH’ hails the “free form femme f uckery” of Authentically Plastic for their first shot beyond Nyege Nyege Tapes’ celebrated comp ‘L’Esprit De Nyege 2020’, while producer-of-the-moment Emma DJ displays their mutability beside fellow Paris native Toma Kami. It’s a surefire switch from YOUTH’s run of long players in 2021, giving the contemporary club what it needs with two template-crumpling takes that rove around the edges of dancehall science.
Authentically Plastic pit the queered club sound of Kampala on ‘Strakka’, hammering out a martial sort of Congo tekno woodblock tattoo in the bone rattling percolations and sweltering industrial clangour of ‘Strakka’ – a strong tip for fans of Crystalmess and Slikback. On the flipside Emma DJ follows their mixtape for UIQ and a VTSS hook-up on a more squashed collaboration with Livity Sound’s Toma Kami, nimbly stepping in the cracks between grime and new Central African styles with sharp-cut but warped cyberdub tekkerz.
The deadliest YOUTH in a hot minute.
AumaYOCS5 Cassette Dec 2021
Sculptor/painter/DIY free spirit Sockethead in scuzziest form, spanking his synths, drum machines & vox into the nuttiest freestyle session; a feral stream-of-consciousness that comes highly recommended if yr into owt from Michael J Blood to Madteo to Actress.
Delivered off-the-cuff in possessed hollers lathered in FX, ‘Auma’ is as close as you’ll get to the heart of Sockethead’s sound in its element. Sharing a mutual, blitzed soul spirit with his bredders Michael J. Blood and Tom “Rat Heart” Boogz, the proceedings often draw outside the lines, spieled with a proper mashed flow that’s a pleasure to follow if u skew to the left of centre: think Madteo meets Ossia at Urban Tribe’s gaff and you’re in the right echo chamber.
Blowing between hip-shot lazer dub chords, krooked Detroit beatdown and mazy reverbs, Sockethead toggles the pressure on and off the bad/good foot into doom-stepper momentum and frazzled drum machine blatz with a radgy flow that speaks to all angles of his influences, absorbed from years as a NQ rat and patron of Manni’s most enduring club nights. If u were feeling his standout ‘Harj-o-Marj’ album or his hookup with Rat Heart’s BodyTronixxx, this one will push yr buttons.
Aye, it’s a madness.
ResiduumYOCD11 CD Sep 2021
|2||The Future Doesn’t Exist|
|7||Drifting In The Third Person|
Significant Other’s glum but resilient meditation on love and loss, a broodingly therapeutic debut album that straddles IDM and industrial Ambient signatures, reminding us of work from Bola to Jay Glass Dubs, Spectre to classic late night Rob Hall mixes.
Sharing a different side of his sound to that heard on club-cut 12”s for Spe:c, Oscilla Sound and anno over the past few years, Significant Other here dwells on feelings that “emerged from moments of extreme passion and pain”, patching new and archival material to work thru a mental fug of ambient noise laments and crankily dubbed out illbient lines of thought.
The pacing is stygian and the atmosphere near still, betraying a depth of suppressed emotion that he processes over the album’s eight tracks. ‘Demonology’ evokes a hash haze contemplation with its patina of Burial-esque vapours and incidental crackle, and ‘The Future Doesn’t Exist’ taps into a classic vein of screwed NYC downbeats a la Spectre, showing off a killer instinct for crushed hip hop drums also explored on the weighty swang of his ‘Love Beat.’
‘Residuum’ doesn’t fall into outright doom, preferring to skirt the event horizon of a black hole and keep the chin bobbing up with the vulnerable yet hopeful tones of ‘Pendant’, also in the Loren Connors-esque midnight peal of ‘Drifting In The Third Person’ and the elegiac closing sequence ‘Perpetual Care’, with its piano and string led coda.
A Buried RiverY14TH 12" Aug 2021
|1||Death Is Quite Clearly Not What It Used To Be|
|6||A Buried River|
|7||Numberless Mile Territory|
YOUTH present the debut album by Leo, a member of the Manteq collective who here deploys a bruised and anxious batch of panel-beaten drill drums and synth gloom somewhere between Forest Swords, Rat Heart and FUMU.
Leading on from their ‘Roshd’ collaboration with Tardast on the ‘Youth 2’ comp, and an EP for Shotta Tapes; Leo yields the most expansive definition of their style with ‘A Buried River’, channelling a mix of rugged crud cut with grime licks tempered by more brooding emotive content that speaks to their various limbs and digits in power electronics, industrial, and reconstituted club styles. Their sound is arguably symptomatic of the North West’s claggy atmospheres as much as its emboldened experimental dance scene, emerging alongside Leo’s DJ collective comrades – AYA, Iceboy Violet, BFTT, MichaelBrailey – with a style that rudely bends conventions into wickedly cranky new forms.
Indicated by the track titles and bleeding from the music, ‘A Buried River’ prizes a sort of northern gothic romance that ideally lends itself to closed curtain daytime listening as much as nocturnal revelling. Their drums bite in grimy permutations of rictus 2-step, broken beats and bummed out trip hop, feeding between passages of bittered noise and synth pads that lend the album’s narrative cadence between the convulsive opener ‘death is clearly not what it used to be’ and its unmissable Coil-meets-Forest Swords shutdown ‘water features.’ Mutant drill and minor key grime motifs prang out in ‘efforts dashed’ and Leo’s taste for harsh textures is exemplified on ‘latex skies’, with ‘to fade’ catching a fine take on Clams Casino instrumentals, and the growling swag of ‘numberless mile territory’ and ‘soil’ dial in Pessimist-like illbient rufige.
Almost, Never, Nearly, Where?YOCD10 CD Jul 2021
|6||It’s All Steel|
Diving deep into post-industrial scuzz and warehouse racket, FUMU racks up the deadliest, most skewed takes on dancehall rave noise and polluted ambient panoramas on his bristling new one for YOUTH, reflecting his roots in Teesside’s mix of Bladerunner-inspiring landscapes and natural lushness as much as his skooling in the rugged underbelly of Manny’s rave scene. If yr into owt from Gescom to Andy Stott to Mika Vainio – your time.
FUMU is a member of the Return to Zero production/DJ crew with Turinn and Sockethead and follows his 2018’s ‘Sinuate’ debut with an aggy album of percussive wreckers and abrasive x beautiful industrial soundscapes compiled from his archives (a new album proper will follow soonish) and originally recorded around 2015-2018 at ‘the tube’, the studio he shared with Turinn. It revolves around a classic interplay of light x dark themes crafted thru panel-beaten rhythms and sore electronics that are brusque and brutalist by design but not without an attentive pathos, where decaying, weathered textures and restless rhythmic variations coalesce in uncomfortable harmony.
Cold, skull-scraping noise and voices from beyond introduce the LP on ‘Nu,’ before the brooding tribute ‘4 Mika’ lures us into the album’s instrumental narrative. Through jump-cuts, black-out fades and picnoleptic edits the album unfurls its secrets thru the bruised bumps of ‘Inna Tough’ and sci-fi electro scud of ‘Unlmtd Potential,’ twysting up mutant hardcore techno on ‘Its All Steel’ and belly-quaking power electronics on ‘Cloud Head,’ with ruthless yardcore noise in ’Skhs Pt 11’ giving way to a heart-swallowing closing sequence of ‘Bye’ via the gnawed new wave machine funk of ‘Recordingtapes’, and the shutdown masterstroke of curdled arps and plangent pads in ‘Extra 10.’
Get in pal.
AbissoYOCS4 Cassette May 2021
|A6||No Name, About Cities And Red Lips|
|B4||Soffio Del Clelo|
Dave Saved with a long awaited debut album proper, a flickering, woozy set of atmospheric low-burners that draws lines between that recently reissued rEAGENZ pearl from Move D and Jonah Sharp, the tripped-out world-building of Gescom’s late night Disengage sessions, thru to the crackling, nostalgic embers of Burial and 0PN’s vaporous throwbacks, bleeding with a rarified, timeless poignance.
As far as this stuff goes; Abisso is about as good as it gets, aligning twelve variegated tracks united by hypnagogic themes crafted with attention to tone designed for optimal immersion in its almost amniotic fantasy scapes. It’s a nostalgic listen for sure, tapping into that primal obsession electronic music has had with technology, science fiction and futurism since its earliest iterations, but rendered here with enough modern materials and a forward facing disposition to save it from feeling overly anchored to the past.
The album moves at a dreamlike pace between the gently curdled lather of ‘Voices’ and the cosmic synth starlight of ‘Nella Notte’ (In The Night); passing from the noctilucent cloud structures of its gorgeous title track to the screwed thizz of ‘Collapsing Patterns,’ taking in the romantic swoon of ‘No name, about cities and red lips,’ along with what sounds like The Humble Bee meets BoC on ’Stanza 2,’ and a slippery, compressed take on early ‘90s chill out room sensuality with ‘Red Storm,’ while ‘Hands’ and ‘Soffio Del Clelo’ bring the album’s final section in orbit of 0PN’s sounds, both his KGBMan edits and soundtrack styles to come.
Lovers of atmospheric, classic electronic music from early BoC to Nimlook’s FAX transmissions to FSOL and 0PN should jump in without delay.
SPORTS 2YOCD6 CD Mar 2021
|2||–||Nuclear Winter (’05 Mix)||4:42|
|8||–||Green Fish Love Bite||2:51|
|18||–||Indeterminate Candidate 2||4:26|
Yes, Sports fans; YOUTH rally the troops for a sprawling 2nd compilation of roving downbeat styles, featuring Peder Mannerfelt, Iueke, and RVDS, alongside label fam like FUMU, Herron and Sockethead, plus enigmatic new names inc. Warlock, Jessicunt, Joe Cotch and many more.
In the three years since the first Youth compilation, Andrew Lyster’s label has grown in stature and scale to encompass myriad integers between the club, the bedroom, and headphones. Their releases from Sockethead, Dijit, Seltene Erden, Blazer Soundsystem, and the mysterious Remer Cier, among others – many of whom appear here – have set the label’s coordinates in bold, new terrain which they explore further with this sterling sophomore suite illuminating shared, rhizomic links that span continents, styles, and intentions.
The vibe is modulated between the artists’ respective flavours, and with 20 tracks the label’s curatorial skills come into play, ably demonstrating a discerning flow between their poles and shadows that surpass the sum of the compilation’s parts. Between the threshold of Lluke’s hyperprism and the noise slurry of 1012’s closer, ‘Reprise’ the artists practically terraform a mutant microcosm unto itself, offering enchanted and murky slants on dembow modernism, ambient zeitgeists, and bedroom-bound songwriting in the age of Covid.
FUMU provides highlights thru heady location recordings on ‘Aphex Hall’ and what sounds like mechanically performed water drumming in ‘Loco Motive’, while his Return To Zero crewmate Sockethead serves likeminded ambient blatz and the crooked soul of ‘I’m Here’, with Herron teasing out the music box malady of ‘Pearl’, and RVDS duets with David Attenborough and a Lyre bird. However, for new kicks, check for Joe Cotch’s killer dembow cyberpunk mission, and a murky proto-grime ace by Warlock (not that one!), the paranoid thoughts of Jessicunt, and a class cut of Farsi drill by Leo & Tardast.
Lips The Same ColorYOCD9 CD Mar 2021
|8||This Watery Reflection|
|9||No Sign Of Them|
Southern gothic shoegaze soul from Sharp Veins, debuting on Andrew Lyster’s YOUTH with a sorely affected album distilling aspects of A.R. Kane, B.o.C, and SALEM with fugged-up bedroom atmospheres in a brittle but tender style.
Finding his place on the Manchester label between Sockethead’s cranky blatz and the smoked-out downstroke of Dijit, ‘Lips The Same Colour’ reveals Sharp Veins’ burned-out soul at its most vulnerable and absorbing. It’s a lushly depressive come-down from the giddy rush of his self-released album ‘Armor Your Actions Up In Quest’ in 2020, and previous excursions on Different Circles and NYC’s UNO, betraying a syrupy emotive core dematerialised in clouds of reverb and harmonised pads, anchored in some of his most disciplined nods to rugged US hip hop drums and emo rap tropes.
In slowing down and opening up his sound to downbeat, pop-wise levels, Sharp Veins comes into his own amid a new wave of artists expressing the melancholy of modern life, with a personalised sound design that says as much as his bleak lyrics and ohrwurming melodies. Everything feels eviscerated and held in suspended animation, attempting to expunge ubiquitous emotions.
Between the numbed doomy tension of ‘Unless’, with its plagent vocal lament, to the gutted cry of “what the f*ck am I doing here?” in ‘Bastard Swarm’, Sharp Veins strikes a nerve on the tinny shimmer of ‘Glue Forest’ and continues under the skin with the B.o.C.-like wooze of album centrepieces ‘Paste 1’ and the Paddy McAloon-on-blues screw of ‘Paste 2’, with a deeply disarming moment to be discovered in ‘A Promise’ and unmistakeable echoes of A.R. Kane on the radiant elegy ‘For Gigi.’
Le Blues P.CYOCS3 Cassette Jan 2021
|Face A – Le Dernier Discours Du Trône||17:46|
|Face B – La Tonalité Et La Teneur||17:46|
Covert operations from some v. notable figures/producers/artists working under the cover of anonymity (for now), following a banner year for Manchester’s YOUTH after doozies from Sockethead, Dijit, Kassem Mosse and many more in 2020 – highly recommended if yr into Mica Levi, John T. Gast, FKA Twigs, The Dead C, Derek Bailey.
Remer Cier is quite a proposition; hustling a roll call spanning figures from the very pinnacle of experimental, contemporary pop, R&B, new age rave, cinema and TV, and spearheaded by one of the most notable A&R/producers of the last decade, the group speaks to a shared political leaning, which is disseminated literally by samples of Bajan PM, Mia Mottley; Steve Biko (as played by Denzel); and Trevor Noah.
Over the past few years, the project has evolved from a thought bubble into reality during lockdown, taking inspiration from London’s fecund, familial jazz and avant-improv scene to sketch out a witted stream-of-consciousness take on pressing issues, ranging from immigration, post-colonialism and racism to Covid-19, and inarguably lands at a critical point as the conscious world reassesses, well, practically everything.
‘Le Dernier Discours du Trône’ on the A side sees Bajan PM Mia Mottley’s cool-headed praise of her nation’s response to the 2020 pandemic layered over an array of prickling and languid strings that appear to channel Company via Miles Davis and The Dead C, creating an uneasy sense of tension with no real relief. On the flip ‘La Tonalité et La Teneur’ they lean in heavier and swaggering, with yanked strings, buzzing microtonal synths and a crispy drum machine underlying barbs of wisdom from Trevor Noah, who asks what white westerners would do without the food n spice immigrants brought with them, taking aim at historic atrocities carried out by the divs of the British empire, effectively still carried out in the dog-whistle politics of the Tories, and by the big ol’ Flump on the other side of the Atlantic.
Harj-o-MarjY11TH 12" Nov 2020
|When I Close My Eyes I See Paint||2:25|
|Love Loss Missing Yearning||3:02|
|In Search Of Truth||3:22|
|All My Days Are Dark As Night||2:49|
|Weights Chains And Forgetful Remembrance||2:42|
|You Are Not A Machine||3:43|
|Gravity Stone Ally||1:33|
Outta-nowhere DIY blinder from YOUTH; the sprawling debut album by Manchester-based painter, artist, DJ/producer Richard Harris aka Sockethead, recorded in a caravan on the Scottish West Coast and sweeping from fractal jungle to outsider folk and bruised, squashed soul music, think something like John Bender via Actress and into a Jandek/Robert Wyatt jam, highly recommended if u were feeling similarly singular Northwest tangents from FUMU, Turinn, G.H.
Aside from knocking out scuzzy wee bombs like this album, Sockethead is a member of Manchester’s Return to Zero production/DJ crew with Turinn and FUMU, and also lectures in art at the city’s institutions. This should give both casual and keener observers of the city’s mutant, sounds strong context for the colourfully visual styles on ‘Harj-o-Marj’, which factors in heavy influences ranging from Detroit techno to post-punk, freak beats and screwed rap, to create a rudely shapeshifting amalgamate disciplined with the hands-on craft and tormented soul of John Bender or Jeff Keen, and fraught with the nostalgia and lurking madness of life spent in isolation.
While Richard’s isolation was self-imposed as part of an artist residency in 2018 on the ruggedly beautiful West Coast of Scotland, its sentiment resonates with mindsets imposed by our current lockdown. By turns the 14 tracks move from a “pissed and lonely” Graham Lambkin-like collage of synths and cranky vocals in ‘Genesis Redux’ to psyche-celtic geometric synth visions in ’When I Close My Eyes I See Paint’, via the fractal junglist brainjig of ‘Chaos Portait’, to bittersweet synth-funk meditations on ‘Love Loss Missing Yearning’ and ‘Devotion’, and exceptional segue into screwed psychoactive crud on ‘Jahiliyyah’, plus thee crankiest cyberfolk song you’ll hear in 2020 on ‘Hyena Clan’.
It’s naught but essential listening for fans of Manchester’s best, embodying the misery and psychic bruising of isolation, but naturally blessed with an artist’s creative resilience and knack for transmuting heavy feels into rough gold.
Music For Broken AdvertsY10TH 12" Oct 2020
|2||Try Taking To Water|
|4||No Face Control|
|5||Baby Birds Flying To Satan|
|6||7th Hit Under Water|
|10||Rethink That Conclusion|
Shamos takes his debut album bow on Youth with a classy set of furtive synths and sneaky drum machine swagger steering away from the ‘floor to your headphones and late night city streets
‘Music For Broken Adverts’ is biased toward the moodier ends of Shamos’ styles for Apron and two self-released tapes on Role Model, taking stronger cues from ‘80s/‘90s cinema and anime soundtracks, offbeat wave and ambient techno, to finesse a fine line of dark cyberpunk moods and grooves.
Dance trax are there if you need them in the staccato electro-breaks of ‘Baby Birds Flying to Satan’, and the scudding lowkey zinger ‘Try Taking To Water’, but they’re best taken as cogs in the machine or scenes in a broader narrative, from the gorgeous middle-distance gaze of ‘Advert 1’, to Caroline K-esque stately procession of ‘FFF’, and like Legowelt meets Pametex in the deep electro creme of ‘Rihiyil’, replete with ace credits sequence ‘Rethink That Conclusion’.
Scorched ErdenYOCD8 CD Sep 2020
|7||Temporal Earth Stone|
Kassem Mosse blesses Youth with a gorgeous ambient album under his Seltene Erden alias making up for a noticeable absence from the release schedule in recent years.
‘Scorched Erden’ marks Kassem Mosse’s full solo debut with Youth after the ’Silica Gel’ cut on their ‘Sports’ CD in 2019. Reviving the Seltene Erden handle last used in 2011 on a 12″ for Mule, the modern house auteur yields some of his most preciously melodic works to date, focussing his interests for retro-futuristic and otherworldly sounds into a form of crystalline, iridescent ambient that shimmers shades away from the likes of uon and Huerco S., the jazzier ambient end of Actress and ‘90s Move D, and the lushest Hassellian 4th World dimensions.
To be honest this is the sort of Kassem album we’ve wanted to hear for ages, seeing him leave the dance for dust and follow his nose into properly aetheric alternate head spaces, showing off that personalised, hybrid analogue/digital soundsphere and tactile design tekkers that we’ve come to love since his earliest turns in the ‘00s. He sucks us right in with the lush FM synth fronds of ‘Mythil Shard’ and, through enigmatic processes, keeps us there until the gravelly slosh of ‘Palestone’, via stunning pieces of GRM-like sound design in ‘Twinkling Titanite’, and the 0PN-like ‘Passage Jewel’, or the spiralling helixes of ‘Rising Core’ with a gripping sense of narration that marks this album, and him, out for soundtrack purposes.
Fuzzy Logic / Future ProofYO9TH 12" Jul 2020
|A2||Car Commercial User|
|A3||Walking Around Soho|
NYC shapeshifters Georgia return to YOUTH following their rhythmelodic odyssey ‘One Mind’ for the label last year. This lot are either sat on a huge archive of unreleased gear or are mad prolific, either way – it’s all first grade biz, from slow and moody steppers to frenetic anything-goes soundsytem adventures. Precision tooled and deadly, the lot of them.
Georgia (not to be confused with Domino’s Georgia Barnes) are firmly in that pool of producers who throw everything into the pot; jungle, footwork, UKG, noise, even a bit of Ae worship – and then strip it bare for added weight. On this one we go from half stepping syrrrrrup on ‘Nit Pik’ to a sort of hairy butter UKG spasm on ‘Walking Around Soho’ and a blunted Mahraganat bass wobble adventure on ‘KHA Danse’. ‘Flash Transport’ is clipped ambient Jungle and ‘Underpass’ is on a straight up Tri Repetae vibe, before ‘TO ‘RUS’ ends usss with a bit of chaos.
Smart, strong gear.
五七五七七 (Go Shichi Go Shichi Shichi)YOCD7 CD Jun 2020
|1||Iwa Utsi Nami|
|2||Tokyo Geijutsu Sai|
More of the good stuff from Youth and the return of Tokyo’s Hoshina Anniversary with a properly strong second release for the label. This one’s more fluid and atmospheric than its predecessor, deploying retro-futuristic synthscapes in the mould of classic YMO/Sakamoto but framed around crushed algorithmic dynamics.
If Nihon No Ongaku was all about gunky rhythms and psychoactive electronics, this one’s about atmospherics in the mould of classic late 80’s Japanese New Wave – and especially Sakamoto’s peerless Left Handed Dream, as well as Anthony Manning’s classic work for Irdial and the more percolated/ambient side of Veiculo-era To Rococo Rot.
We’re not gonna lie, ‘Left Handed Dream’ is our favourite Sakamoto album, and 五七五七七 seems very much built in its image – a quietly organic take on futurism that makes use of wildlife and found sounds alongside brittle and fizzing synths as part of its dreamlike world-building. That vibe is most evident on the opening Iwa Utsi Nami, on Shinobaremu and the woodwind-heavy Ryuushouten, but there are also loose and startling tangents; such as the sudden Mentasm breakdown on Tokyo Geijutsu Sai which arrives with a sudden and unexpected jolt.
But yeah – trust that if you’re into that ‘Left Handed Dream’ vibe, this one will push a lot of the same buttons for you – and if you don’t know that album, check it out pronto and then swerve back to this one for a worthy accompaniment.
Hyperattention: Selected Dijital Works Vol. 1YO7TH 12" May 2020
|B5||We’re the dead||4:06|
Mesmerising debut album of blue and abstracted trip hop from Cairo’s Dijit, making their first appearance for Andy Lyster’s YOUTH with a smoked-out, downbeat sound reminding us of Leila’s uber-classic debut album ‘Like Weather’, Tricky’s Pre-Millennium Tension, with echoes of Tirzah, ZULI and Msylma.
Perfectly low-lit and charged with a slow, nocturnal energy, ‘Hyperattention: Selected Digital Works Vol.1’ rounds up five years (2013-2018) of recordings made in Cairo by Hashem L Kelesh aka Dijit, featuring a succession of guest vocalists who would come to smoke, drink, hang-out and make music in his studio. Undoubtedly echoing Richard D James and Björk-collaborator Leila as much as the off-kilter blooz of Tricky, or even Tirzah’s hashed-out lower case R&B, the set memorably introduces a fully formed artist who’s already worked with well known musicians and singers in Egypt and the Middle East.
Framing a strung-out and time-lapsed window into five years of work, the music could feasibly have been made any time between the mid ‘90s and now if it wasn’t for the hyper-modern production gloss that places it very much in the present, tracing the shadowiest smoke curl lines of classic trip hop with gently intoxicating/intoxicated vocals that match and smartly rub against the music’s woozy, rugged contours. The most enduring ghosts of ‘90s Bristol surely haunt the likes of opener ‘1772’ and the loping sexiness of ‘Morra’ (a cover of Abd Elghani Alsayed) which both usher in the presence of SD who also crops up on the sultriest and rudest highlights such as ‘Natfo’ and the soul-scratching funereal closer ‘We’re The Dead’. Beside the 808 heartache of ‘Bad K’ with its exquisite Karimaann vocal, the gruffer voice of AC Ghazy sits heavy on the dread pressure of ‘Babaakh’, and the mantric bars of Ott Eswed on ‘Zeed’ lend an ideal balance to the album in tune with what sounds like a Shackleton jam in ‘Lakk’, and echoes of Muslimgauze in the cracked instrumental ‘Soaad’.
Impressive in its nuanced range of low key but visceral expression, ‘Hyperattention: Selected Digital Works Vol.1’ extends a memorable introduction to a key Middle Eastern artist whose sound is timelessly familiar and keyed in for contemplative times.
UntitledYO8TH 12" Apr 2020
Grime scapes. Grim escapes.
It’s a bit knowing // to grime what Lee Gamble’s Diversions was to jungle. Praxis makes perfect?
Blazer Sound SystemYO6TH 10" Mar 2020
Killer vinyl debut of chromatic dembow bubblers and downbeat illbient from NYC’s Blazer Sound System on Andy Lyster’s Youth label.
Comprising Zebrablood (formerly of psych freaks Excepter) and Rainstick, the Blazer Sound System duo were brought to Youth’s attention by what Andrew Lyster calls their “must check” monthly NTS show, where BSS mash together a broad mixture of styles loosely landing between psych, dub, avant-techno and current road music. Their vinyl now cements their reputation and sound in 10”s of hard black plastic that sits neatly beside Youth’s FUMU and Georgia releases.
Uptown Rainstick catches a wave of ribboning chromatic arps, sirens and dembow dancehall bumps that sound like a n NYC block party on mushies – big for the DJ Python heads – alongside Zebrablood’s ‘Whatcomesup96’ cut that patently sounds like a vintage Spectre or Kaman Leung neck snapper. Downtown, on ‘Destorto’ Zebrablood makes the vibe like a haunted carnival with choking levels of dank bass spun out with scudding reggaeton synflutes, and ‘Draco Beat’ returns to that late ’90s dancehall/hip hop crossover sound with rudest results.
SPORTSYO5TH 12" Jan 2020
|A3||–||0219_26_re_0818_01_re_0417_14_lv_1bss omsp 64 3|
Rugged budgers from FUMU, Kassem Mosse, Raster-Noton regular Grischa Lichtenberger, LDWG and Sensu appear on the abridged 12” pressing of Youth’s acclaimed ‘Sports’ comp
Siphoning highlights from the 16-track showcase CD (which also featured strong tackle by mutant experimental techno bods including Turinn, Peder Mannerfelt, CVX, Iueke and many more beside), this 12” sampler now places some of the comp’s firmest dancefloor joints onto vinyl.
Up top your boy Ludwig a.k.a. LDWG kicks off with the brutal bass gnaw and drunken master bashment lurch of ‘DRM1MKIII’, next to the slow, arid, gutted hunch of ’Silica Gel’ by Kassem Mosse – affiliate of Youth boss Andy Lyster from his meandyou. days – and the viscous swagger of Raster-Noton regular Grischa Lichtenberger.
Down below, smog monster FUMU takes control with a hollow-belly industro bashment workout ‘FM’ that sounds like Geins’t Naït meets Craig Leon in an iron silo, and Belgium’s Sensu recoils the grotty slow electro slog of ‘MHG’. Shame they missed off some of the CD’s other highlights but mustn’t grumble cos there’s some choice gear inside.
SkinnedYOV7C 7" Dec 2019
Smoggy radge-packet FUMU wrists a big aggy boo to the dance with ’Skinned’, the mutant, bashment-ready follow-up to his cultishly acclaimed debut CD issued in late 2018 on YOUTH
A member of Manny’s Return To Zero crew with Turinn and Rich Harris, FUMU has become notorious for his cyberpunk style of ruffkut dancehall and knackered house polluted with noisy power electronics. On the ’Skinned’ EP he shells four typically concise dancefloor wreckers inspired as much by the undercurrents of Manchester dancefloors and bedrooms as the Bladerunner landscape of his formative Teesside stomping grounds, resulting a sound compatible with Demdike Stare and Muslimgauze as much as DJ Scud and Ossia.
In four untitled bits he works up a filthy head of steam from swanging dancehall rhythms and industrial drones, booting off with the ruffian shunt of part 1, before shooting shredded jet engine sounds on the stunted drums and distorted graffiti of part 2, before turning it out like Merzbow on the dembow with part 3, and pasting soundsystem chat and primal screams onto murderous subs and in the burnt-out bogle of part 4.
One MindYOCD5 CD Nov 2019
|8||Easy Film Prolific Key||4:54|
|14||Anmonothe Lounge Track||5:32|
NYC-based shapeshifters Georgia do it loose and freaky for Andy Lyster’s Youth label with an 80 minute mosaic of worldly, rhythmelodic inspirations and psychedelic electronics.
Following a haul of prime material released over the past 12 months with everyone from Firecracker and Ekster to Métron Records, the duo of Brian Close and Justin Tripp aka Georgia really suit the playthru CD format of ‘One Mind’ with a showcase of hypnotic, psychedelic styles that really takes a grip with extended, immersive listens.
The 15 tracks are haphazard and frazzled examples of Georgia’s pointed take on upending western electronic convention with non-standard scales and rhythms. Whether trading in wilfully oblique modular electronics or following club-ready hunches, they always prize a sense of playfulness. Knotty, nutty modular flux in ‘Fifthda’ shares space with wigged-out, ceremonial processions such as ‘Window 8’ and mutations in ‘New Force’, along with sizzling mixes of thumb pianos and synthesised voices recalling Paul DeMarinis’ ‘Songs Without Throats’ on ‘Baiala Ghalic’, and Iueke-style dancehall warpers such as ‘City Floral’.
And on a more ruffneck flex, the sluggin’ slow-fast bogle of ‘Laca Ja’ shares a rudeness in common with the gruff prang of ’Smart Stance’, but they’re at best when doing it colourfully and psychedelic, as with the fractal flow of ‘Day To’, and when it all comes together like Senyawa sparring Foodman on ‘Vision Zero’.
Fading SummerYOCS2 Cassette Oct 2019
|1||Turbo In Sviluppo||2:57|
Crafted for an end-to-end listen, Fading Summer flows with an enchanted/enchanting quality from the plucked pointillism of ‘Turbe In Sviluppo (version)’ to the weepy, 1991-esque gauze of ‘Miss You’, taking in the vulnerable peal of ‘A Man’ alongside what sounds like The Cure jangling with Black Zone Myth Chant on ‘Angelo Azzurro’, and some deft yet detached drum machine workouts in the noirish junglist ‘Chromatic’ and the listing ambient breaks of ‘Swan’.’
However the best parts are those groggy ambient bridges that join it all together, as with the puckered introspection of ‘Biscotti 180’, the angelic coos of ‘Regina’, and the seductive iridescence of ‘Boxe’ and ‘Delete Instagram’, giving it all a weightless, fizzing, hopefull feel we’re in desperate need of right now.
Lo TechYOCD4 CD Aug 2019
|Go Ballistic (Irate Mix)||4:42|
|To The Side||4:41|
|Breakneck (Make Do Mix)||3:49|
|Spawn (Napalm Bat Version)||4:09|
Grimy, wonky cam shaft mechanics from L. Lund, minting a cranky debut of lurching rhythms and manacled digital noise for Andy Lyster’s burgeoning Youth label. RIYL Iueke, Brassfoot, Filter Dread…
Splashing around in the distorted wake of albums by FUMU and Hoshina Anniversary and the standout ‘Sports’ compilation, Finnish underground lynchpin L. Lund coughs up the label’s wildest patch of briering electronics yet to follow his equally scuzzy, nutty offerings on Calum Gunn and tuuun’s ace Co-Dependent label.
Dog-eared daubs of dancehall, grime and cubist electro are diced and in a feral, uncouth style that’s become quite synonymous with the Youth label. From the charred subs and prickling electro trills of ‘Hold Back’ to the recursive blatz of ‘Spawn (Napalm Bat Version)’, your man holds a seething, stare-down intensity that just doesn’t let up. Bombed-out, hull-scraping bass charges in ‘Kops’ give way to sawn-off 8-bar styles in ‘Gassed’, while the swarming formations of ‘Go Ballistic (Irate Mix)’ recall aspects of Croww or 1127’s gnarled noise, and the pranging, window-smashing shrapnel of ‘Pusher (Version)’ comes off like a steaming drunk Anthoney Hart weapon.
Asymmetric, off-road, and thoroughly rotted with noise, this one’s a lot of mucky fun, and that artwork is properly on-point!
The WeathertenkoYOV7B 7" May 2019
Howes slugs two grubby house and dancehall trax on ‘The Weathertenko’ 7” for Andy Lyster’s Youth label, following their ace CDs by Hoshina Anniversary and FUMU
Taking a minute out from running his Cong Burn label, Howes really gets into Youth’s cyberpunky mindset on both sides: firstly with a soggy bilge pumper that sounds like an early MDR or Silent Servant grinder, c.2009, then with a brilliantly unexpected slice of slow, electroid dancehall torque on the B-side, all rub-and-tug bass and cold, ceramic dub FX.
Nihon No OngakuYOCD3 CD May 2019
|Hirajoshi / 平調子||7:12|
|Hokorobi / ほころび||6:12|
|Arazaramu / あらざらむ||5:16|
|Maai / 間合い||8:20|
|Maihime / 舞姫||4:33|
|Makuranage / 枕投げ||5:36|
|Noroshi / 狼煙||5:30|
|Seseragi / せせらぎ||5:14|
|Saga / 性||7:11|
|Shindeiru / 死んでいる||4:44|
|Souon Ichi / 装音 壱||5:51|
Youth keep up a killer run of form with the first album proper by Tokyo’s Hoshina Anniversary; a steeply immersive fusion of traditional Japanese instruments with gunky acid and coruscating, psychoactive electronics.
Arriving hot on the heels of Youth’s widely-praised ‘Sports’ comp, Hoshina Anniversary’s ‘Nihon No Ongaku’ extends an invitation into a singular sound world as mazy and enigmatic as the label’s previous solo artist album by FUMU, but informed by a whole other set of reference points.
Comprising over an hour of material, ‘Nihon No Ongaku’ showcases Hoshina Anniversary’s full but particular range, spreading out from the heavy-lidded acid noise hypnagogia to experiments with processed instrumentation and pulsating electronics that recall Sote’s ontological explorations of traditional Iranian music, but woven with curious threads of pinched, minimalist, fluid rhythmelody.
If you’re after highlights, run check for the Don’t DJ-alike percussive cadence of ‘Maai’ – somehow reminding us of both Photek’s ‘Ni Ten Ichi Ryu’ and Ryuichi Sakamoto’s ‘Left Handed Dream’ album, the grubbing electro-dub elegance of ‘Makuranage’, or the oddly sidewinding, darkly jazzy hustle of ‘Saga’ and ’Shindeiru’.
A big tip to fans of owt from Peder Mannerfelt to Foodman, Sote or Don’t DJ!
SPORTSYOCD2 CD Mar 2019
FUMU – Assesment 04:24
LDWG – DRM1MKIII 04:15
CVX – Thylias Moss #1 04:55
Iueke – ewt 01:52
Turinn – yu dnt 04:10
FUMU – FM 05:18
Broshuda – Hekt 05:08
APRG – ESCO 05:33
Shamos – 7 Man Town 02:46
RVDS – Ballad D’Amour 06:11
Turinn – ehektrow 05:07
Sensu – Vermillion 04:36
Killer, mutant techno and brokebeat variegations from FUMU, Turinn, Kassem Mosse, Peder Mannerfelt, Iueke, Broshuda, CVX and many more on Andy Lyster’s Youth label
Congregating friends and label family from the rudest ends of contemporary electronics, ‘Sports’ finds the label consolidating their tastes for neon-flecked, grey area noise and skudged grooves in 16 absorbingly visceral and bittersweet parts.
FUMU follows his cultishly-acclaimed debut CD for Youth with the hardware-wrestled ambience of ‘Assessment’ and the Pump-like metallic roil of ‘FM’, while Modern Love’s Turinn provides two salty highlights in the cracnky-ass hip hop lurch of ‘yu dnt’ and his Muslimgauze-like offbeat, ‘ehektrow.’ Also keeping it in the family, Shamos knuckles out the gristly downstroke of ‘7 Man Town’ and Yugen Disciple supplies the album’s very lushest moment with the early ‘00s electronica styles of ‘First Sighting.’
However the set really comes into its own when Youth diversifies its bonds, bringing in a 2nd circle of mutual souls such as Kassem Mosse with the dreamy buoyancy of ’Silica Gel’, the febrile gamelan of Iueke’s ‘ewt’, some tender minimal wave with ‘Ballad D’Amour’ by RVDS, and the clinical rufige of Grischa Lichtenberger, who all lend a broader range of pattern and texture that keeps Youth’s remit thrillingly wide open and unpredictable.
DiamondsYOV7A 7" Dec 2018
Design — Andrew Lyster
Mastering — Andrew Lyster
Mysterious happenings on Andrew Lyster’s Youth label from a “well known producer” involved with the label wishing to stay incognito; that probably means it’s Kassem Mosse, who knows?? – in any event – this one’s a killer.
Deploying a trio of slow dancehall-indebted digital dubs, EP opener Diamonds functions as a kind of late night slinker, all angular and spaced-out, as if Equiknoxx found themselves transported back to classic-era Source records via Move D / Reagenz.
Noh Mas is on a more demented Workshop tip, complete with maniacal laughing fills and righteous strings somewhere between Kassem Mosse and Madteo, while 7″ closer I, I drips into being with pure slow house filth.
:::::::::::::YO4TH 12" Dec 2018
Hypnotic, stripped down techno from Bryce Hackford, joining Andrew Lyster’s Youth label for a 3-track session after their incendiary FUMU release
The A-side is a proper, unassuming slow burner in the model of Levon Vincent, with tinfoil hi-hats tapped in over a booming kick and webbed with spidery electronics sure to induce some eyes shut moments in the club.
On the flip he channels that momentum somewhere shoreside with claggy, smoky atmosphere and distaced field recordings lending a fine depth perception, before the final cuts dawn a deep, rolling, tribal house trance replete with chants and a rising chord sequence from the Carl Craig playbook.
SinuateYOCD1 CD Sep 2018
|Billingham Biomass Powerstation||1:24|
|Disto Beatz 2||2:16|
|Disto Beatz 3||3:31|
|Disto Beatz 10||3:39|
|Disto Beatz 15||3:16|
|Everything Is On Fire||3:31|
|In The Darkness Girl||3:16|
“Killer debut release from FUMU, coughing up 18 sawn-off tracks of fucked hip hop, warehouse and techno on Andrew Lyster’s Youth label. Definitely mark this gadge in your one-to-watch list.
Hailing from downwind of heavy North East industry, but currently sequestered in Manchester, FUMU is a member of the Return to Zero crew and a known affiliate of Modern Love’s Turinn, with whom he’s shared a studio and shares a taste for the most guttural, asphalt-grained dance music and short-circuiting electronics.
On ’Sinuate’ FUMU finally yields a peek at his working praxis, revealing a restlessly roving mind at work consolidating myriad, fractious styles at mutant angles, and in a half-cut and gauzy style that recalls everyone from Mica Levi and co thru to Madteo. It’s the sort of sound that only comes with being an omnivorous listener and hard-headed producer, the kind that pushes his gear to the point of near breakdown in order to bring out its most unique sounds.
If we’re playing favourites, the trilling pendulations and overproof bass of ‘Graeyard’ are right up there, as is the NoYo dembow bleeper ‘In The Darkness Girl’, and the honky boschment of ‘Regulator’, but to be fair there’s f*cking loads to go on, and we’re sure everyone else will have their own percy.
– Boomkat “
Design — Andrew Lyster
Mastering — Andrew Lyster
Luxury FlatYO3TH 12" Jul 2018
|A1||IBEX 2 (MD-A02_XOX-101)||7:21|
Design — Andrew Lyster
Mastering — Andrew Lyster
Superb deep techno and ambient electronica from Yügen Disciple, a new name on Andy Lyster’s Youth following their blink-and-miss introduction to FUMU
Pretty flawless from any angle, the A-side features the systolic thrum and heavy-lidded pads of ‘IBEX 2 (MD-A02_XOX-101)’ and the spectral acid of ‘Luxury Flat’, while the B-side hearkens back to vintage Mille Plateaux daze in ‘Pattern Recognition’, and checks out with the sdancign dust mites of ’Shinkansen Blur’.
Big tip to fans of Shinichi Atobe, SND, Actress
Pudel PalomaYOCS1 Cassette May 2018
|A||Live Recording Golden Pudel 13.04|
|B||Live Recording Paloma Bar 14.04|
Design — Andrew Lyster
Mastering — Andrew Lyster
First sold at Soup Kitchen 26.05.2018
Edition of 100.
YOU2HYO2TH 12" Jan 2017
Design — Andrew Lyster
Mastering — Andrew Lyster
Andy Lyster’s Youth label wrest four stripes of punky blooze from Shamos, who steers away from the rugged house knocks of his Apron 12”s to nervier, faded headpieces in YO2TH.
Acquainted thru London’s NTS studio, Lyster and Shamos have conspired to reveal alternate aspects of the latter’s aesthetic, sidewinding from what sounds like one of Delroy Edwards’ Teenage Tapes cuts in the grungy wave stepper Found Grace to Lukid-esque alien tribalism in 13213132, then with a gristly, blank-eyed slug of EBM in TMF, and desiccated Detroit boogie in Nuws.
VoidYO1TH 12" Jan 2017
Design — Andrew Lyster
Mastering — Andrew Lyster
Droopy techno abstraction from Yard, making the maiden voyage on the meandyou.-affiliated Youth label.
In four parts the Portland-based producer coaxes out a greyscale spectrum of machine mumbles and squirmy 303 graffiti; testing your patience with the wobbly nothings of Void, then descending into the claggy dub-house and silty acid piece, White Fog, before giving you something to dance with in the effluent flow of Canopy, and finally ripping out a stripe of caustic 303 modulations in Marshall Acid.