the raptures luke jenner ventures firmly into the dance floor, this time in full force, on glittering jewel, the brooklyn-based producers debut ep under his meditation tunnel guise. red axes come through with an unclassifiable, stripped-down reinterpretation of fire fly, the perfect pair to deconstruct and re-contextualize the original material.
la awanto 3 and meditation tunnel appear on the latest blitz, dj tennis’ ongoing, limited, vinyl-only series. these colourful records sometimes pop-up around life and death showcases, often featuring non-standard cuts + off-kilter attitudes. dekmantel affiliate, awanto 3 offers-up an infectious after-party gem, with “the phone we call it.” slow-burning cosmic keyboards pair with elements of detroit techno and a subtle wink to rdj’s masterstroke, xtal. the flip contains a killer from meditation tunnel, the newly-birthed dance project from the rapture’s luke jenner. la la la is a blitz future-classic. syncopated bass guitar, crusty synthetic strings and the purest of vocal performances - blitz #2 is one to remember.
2018 reissue/ repress - in yellow coloured vinyl after offering-up paratrooper as part of dj tennis recent dj kicks, the israeli duo red axes arrive on life and death for an original ep. sami is a post-moondog shamanic tribal trip, while round combines dilapidated post-goa electronics with just the right amount of cowbells and guitars psych. vego is a lo-if western spaghetti full of tape delays and amplifiers sauce while pulse waves and wind blows on a big russian bell at the title track kalacol. a record that could only come from niv and dori another reconfiguration of the life and death mausoleum.
the/das ist ein aus der formation bodi bill hervorgegangenes musikprojekt von fabian fenk (gesang) und philipp koller (elektronik, mix), das 2012 in berlin gegr³ndet wurde. der bandname soll eine neutrale bedeutung haben und in keine bestimmte richtung verweisen. ihren sound nennen die beiden techno tenderness, was in etwa chilliger afterhour-musik bzw. new romantic house entspricht. diesen fanden die geneigten h÷rer auf bislang ³ber einer handvoll ver÷ffentlichungen, darunter der lp -freezer- von 2014. dessen innig ersehnter nachfolger erscheint auf dem italienischen, von dj tennis gef³hrten label life and death. wõhrend bei fr³heren releases eher der homelistening-aspekt betont wurde, gibt das produzenten-duo auf -exit strategies- verstõrkt clubfreundliche seiten von sich preis. daf³r vermengen die zwei ziemlich geschickt, geschmackssicher und facettenreich urspr³nglichen techno berliner prõgung und organische soundschleifen miteinander und w³rzen das ganze mit verspielten kinematografischen details. ein aufwõndiges verfahren, dessen umsetzung von losen skizzen ³ber die ersten arrangements und immer wieder neuen ?berarbeitungen bis zum finalen mix im studio rund drei jahre dauerte.
CANNON FODDER(DJ SOTOFETT/PLANETARY ASSAULT SYSTEM RMXS)
12" Vinyl D02.05.17
life and death welcomes italian synth wizard lucy, for the labels inaugural release of 2017. luca mortellaros cavernous techno offering comes equipped with a dj sotofett version and a rendition by planetary assault systems, further cementing the diversity of the labels scope. dj sotofett recalls fine nineties loop techno while luke slater once again confirms his pioneer status.
autarkic makes up part of an unspoken alliance from telaviv, which is currently altering the state of contemporary house and techno music. heavy dreamer, the artists first, four track outing on life and death, showcases much of what this bold movement is about, all while pushing it forward into progress. ever present tones of kraut and punk rock flow throughout the ep, beginning with some things to keep, a pumping, warehouse floor filler. autarkic steps up to the mic, often re-amping and distorting his vocal delivery, placing it alongside finely programmed keyboard riffs, tough drums and further psychedelia. realistic guru, the trippiest of the lot, is tailor made for an early morning dj tennis afterparty excursion. slowing down the pace on powerhouse, autarkic hints at moments of bauhaus and tones on tails doom and dance pop, while offering up a digital only, stripped down, bonus version. the title track stands as a testament to this new wave of artists, coming from the shores of israels mediterranean coastline. bass, drums and guitar are recorded through bespoke boxes and presented through the lens of modernist club culture.
the saqqara ep is a multilayered, sonic canvas from the mind of chris barratt, as he launches his new alias, baratt, for life and death. fine brushstrokes move from all areas of his musical hideout, spreading over five, varied, aural sculptures, each one warping and weaving on its own cosmic trajectory. pooling from key aspects of his eagles & butterflies project, barratt induces new musical shades, hinting at moments of disco and funk, through a lens of psychedelia. the title track is a late-night floor-filler - a bold yet uniquely personal necropolis built from riveting delays and arpeggiators. time bending sees dj tennis join in, stepping up with his trademark, rough around the edges production aesthetic, en route to unknown destinations. barratt hones-in on a confident, stripped-down style on khaos - rhythm versus melody just in time for festival season. 1983 soundtracks a ride to utopia on a rocket-fueled vespa, leading to collider, the land of un-quantised madness, where the most treasured of synthesisers live amongst their drum machine counterparts. flowing yet incredibly interconnected, saqqara is best interpreted as a mini artist album - the first of many barratt offerings.
contemporary italo-disco and foggy rave culture mark margots first 12inch on life and death, amore a bordo pista - a welcomed surprise. machines breathe on a1, where throbbing synth-bass meets timeless vocoder, as premiered on dj tennis essential mix debut. the afterparty and warehouse meld on the flip, a mind-bending time-warp - somewhere between panic and introspection. technicolour signee, dauwd, aces his re-depicton of the title track, hinting at golden-era chain reaction, while kiwi slows down salsce, retaining all of its drive, adding further cosmic brushstrokes. four weapons of the mind, a trippy affair.
seven years into its celebrated journey, life and death assembles its third and most adventurous compilation to date - displaced soundtracks. for the first instalment in a new series, dj tennis has given free rein to some of his most trusted contemporaries, enabling many of todays most respected dance music producers to display their hidden talents as composers. gathering music from a long-aborted film, the collection stands as another bastion of life and deaths perpetual evolution. duncan gray embraces dissonance, black merlin, appleblim and artefakt go interstellar and fango channels post-punk squat music. hades rocket showcases the expertly-sequenced synth work that has graced simian mobile discos illustrious career, while redshape revisits all the right sides of 80s wave and library music. danny daze and synth-savant kink embrace non-standard tempi with great success, while axel boman delivers sitar-laced gospelhouse without a bass drum. elsewhere, your favourite producers favourite producer, stimming, teams up with pianist lambert and the pair learn to fly. inspired and challenging, life and death ventures into their eighth year confidently, constantly evolving without compromise.
with further announcements forthcoming with life and death later this summer, drug dilling offers up the first new material from the/das on the label since 2013s outfashioned. now as a duo, fabian fenk and philipp kollers latest ep is the result of playful and pure studio sessions, during which they aimed to capture the often-overlooked club-friendly side of their project. top vibes breakbeats come as a welcomed surprise, while holy rollers pairs wobbling synth pads with a vocal cameo by dj tennis. the standout title-track recalls hazy afterparty moments. detroit stalwart dj bone delivers a focused reinterpretation on the flip, backing expertly-sampled organ takes and flanged vocal lines in an enticing bed of afro-cuban rhythms.
italo-cosmonauts marvin & guy board life and death with superior conjunction. alessandro parlatore and marcello giordani’s four-tracker explores parallel worlds through expert synthesiser sequencing and cavernous vocals features. celestial melodies paired with athena’s stream of consciousness italian recital guarantees superior conjunction’s dance floor devastation. arpadia’s hypnotic theme compliments the title track’s restrained drama, while fantastic twins recital elevates the train of fantastic to an altered state of being. the ep is out on june 16th, right on time for this year’s life & death off sonar event in barcelona.
the first release by parisian iconoclast joakim for his friends and european colleagues at dj tennis life and death records is a miniature nocturne for dance floor meditation, a cascade of unfurling fizzy moods and introspection, finally tuned and expertly rendered by the electronic music maestro. -i met manfredi (tennis) through luke jenner (ex the rapture) in nyc. when manfredi has a few days off his busy touring schedule, he comes to my studio to work with luke on their collaboration project. we usually talk about synths, food, dj gossip and complain about espressos in nyc. about 6 months ago we were eating korean fried chicken and manfredi asked me if i’d like to do something for his label life & death. at the time i had a bunch of club tunes i started working on and somehow had a feeling some of them could be a fit for life & death so i played those and manfredi very quickly picked one, daemon. i thought putting out something on life & death was at the same time kind of odd (and if you didnt notice yet, i like when things are unexpected) and totally appropriat
is the doctrine of the mind fully contained within the physical brain? or are there places that we can traverse, places between places, that exist outside of ourselves and the consensual reality we all seem to inhabit? close your eyes and just try it for a second. you may be surprised where you go… exploring this theme of journeying beyond our strict sense of self, label mates and friends tale of us and mind against have joined together once again to create a work that works, fittingly, well past the summation of it s parts. playing with tension and release and a restrained but expressive sonic palate that paints a picture without words, these accomplished artists from the life and death team bring us to a place that seems to surely exist. even if we might not be able to pinpoint exactly where that is
constantly turning around itself, the winding melody of vertere turns outward and inward at the same time, bringing the listener on a journey outward while mirroring a simultaneous labyrinthine journey inward. like the word itself, vertere, with its roots in the latin word verto (which itself takes its roots in the earlier sanskrit word, vartayati) it signifies the very nature of change itself. it means both to turn and reflect inward and yet also move forward — a call to action for setting in motion new things. a paradox at first glance but also perhaps a surprisingly accurate description of the destructive and reconstructive nature of creation. an apt metaphor for this bright new collaboration between established life and death artists mind against and the new artist project of federico maccherone, aka somne. on remix duties, when you have an artist of the caliber of tobias freund, you don t need to ask for anything more and with his outstanding remix of vertere he very clearly shows why. this long time mainstay of the electronic music scene has managed to stay not just relevant but on the cutting edge longer than most with respected releases on some of the most seminal imprints to be putting out music in the world of underground dance music. with vertere he takes what s already top quality material and somehow manages to turn it inward and in his own unique way elevate it to another level entirely. with a relentless beat and a sonic force that is hard to describe with mere words the tobias. remix of vertere comes out of the gate like a runaway machine rapturously drunk on its own self awareness. it marches ever forward, full of fervor, and will surely be driving dance floors both large and small to the euphoric edge of the ecstatic state.
with its first release of the new year, life and death is proud to introduce the newest members of its formidable and tight knit family, woo york. hailing from the ukraine, this hard working duo has been successfully making the transition from local heroes to major international players through their crafting of strong, emotive techno accompanied by a live show notable for its improvisational streak, allowing the guys to stay true to the spirit of the songs while still adapting them to whatever setting they find themselves presented with.
2014 repress !!
berlin based, italian born, alessandro and federico fognini are not just brothers in arms but actual brothers who have been growing up together their whole lives. which might help explain why these 2 recent arrivals on the scene have already established a sound much more mature than their years might suggest.
the two original tracks, while very different in moods, both share lush productions and a dramatic musical storytelling while the wonderful remix by ame is taking the song into an epic masterpiece that works wonders on a dancefloor while never losing the bewitching essence of the original
without a doubt, manfredi romano (aka dj tennis) is a busy man. co-founder and partner of life and death, a dj with a full schedule and someone who still always has his fingers (and mind) in multiple projects and multiple places at the same time. how he juggles it (or when he sleeps) are questions best not pondered. one thing those who know him well have surely noticed is that he does it all while constantly on the move. unfazed by the constant whirl of cities that pass him by, he somehow manages to remain focused throughout. no matter where he goes, he somehow always manages to remain local.
after the sensation caused by its last release, life and death comes back strong with another battle cry into the darkness. with a prized new member of the family, vaal, joining forces with a life and death mainstay, tale of us, the stage is set for another epic ep from the forward thinking label
last year anton feist and fabian fenk of the/das debuted on life and death with their fresh water ep, a collaboration with tale of us that functioned as a milestone release for the label. now the duo is back with three new songs that move mysteriously around the edges of the club.
a time machine appeared to us recently in a cloud of smoke and a giant portal of light. out of the portal a smoking piece of futuristic metal emerged and fell onto our floor. closer examination revealed it to be a time capsule sent from the future. a message from the year 2043, it contained diagrams of futuristic machines from what looks to have been the studio sessions of the recordings presented here. here is what we found, a 2 track ep (plus remixes) from artists from the future. recordings made 21 years from now but from artists who you may have already heard of today.
36 hours in. the lights are flickering and the sweat is pouring out of you like the thoughts that you re trying to write down, to get down the words, to put down the message, to translate all the ideas that keep appearing in your head. ideas like uninvited guests that keep showing up and refusing to leave. somewhere though, there s a truth in there. you know it because you saw it. you know it because you felt it. because when you knew that even though there were ten million reasons why you should go to bed now, why you should go to bed straight away. that you should put these silly things down and stop trying to create and just get some sleep already. that you should stop trying to wrestle the ideas in your subconscious down to the ground so you can actually capture and express them to others. but you persist.
carefully caressing your back whilst whispering sweet nothings into your ear, pillowtalk join the life and death family with their modern dance soul hybrid, >the come back ep<. despite the name, its actually a debut ep -- and one that quickly establishes pillowtalks unique sound as an important voice in the new generation of contemporary dance music. already getting serious play (and props) from a wide range of djs, from the deep & soulful wolf + lamb and soul clap crews all the way to the banging bass centric justin martin, >the come back< finds life and death once again crossing the conventional genre descriptions with a true dancefloor bomb that everyone can get behind. imagine motown and classic doo-wop blended with a modern dance sensibility and you may start to get an idea of the pillowtalk sound. but its better to stop imagining and just have a listen because what these guys are doing is so genuinely unique, its not an easy one to pigeonhole with words and genre titles alone. the ep includes >the come back<, >soft< and >long lost friends< as well as a life and death remix of >soft<. put together in the life and death laboratories it brings a darker, deeper take on this beautiful and already incredibly sentimental dancefloor serenade.
in just a matter of months, life and death has swiftly established itself as purveyors of quality contemporary dance music, made by artists who would undoubtedly make anyone s short list of who i d like to invite to my afterparty . it seems only fitting then that with their newest release they ve recruited the undisputed kings of late night mayhem and madness for a paen tribute to that beautiful party after the party, the continuation of all things good and twisted.. the afterparty itself. not to take the issue of such a joyful celebration lightly, dop has gone on secret missions over the last 6 months, quietly (and often not so quietly) infiltrating afterparties worldwide and secretly extracting pituitary secretions from the rowdiest party goers at each of them. they then took these secretions, burned them in a special voodoo ceremony and immediately went into the studio to create a fitting tribute to the after-hours festivities we all hold so dear. once that was complete, friends were invited and even more deviants came to the party for some dirty late night remix action. clockwork (who s recently released it s you again on hot creations has already been the soundtrack to many an after party) are here, french wolf+lamb collaborator le loup is here, mas collective (who recorded on seminal nyc label strictly rhythm) is here and marius & david are here too.. everybody giving it their own special flavor. what an afterparty indeed.
after an impressive debut with thugfuckers >disco gnome<, life and death returns for round two as it once again gives us its slightly psychedelic after-hours take on dance pop. here it s with a remix ep that features two stellar remixes of danish band whomadewho. the first remix comes from tale of us, the young italian duo who were quickly recognized for their incredible remix of disco gnome and who are already being recognized as one of the most promising new electronic acts to come out of italy in the last 5 years. the second remix comes from michael meyer, a pillar of dance music and an outstanding producer who truly needs no introduction. with a dreamy voice and haunting melodies that creep into your brain and stay there until well after the lights have come back up, >every minute alone< seems set to establish the new label as strong voice leading the charge into new territories along the borderline of dance and pop.
this is a textured soundscape energized by drums that might sound inspired from the influences of the past but are clearly crafted with sounds pulled from the future. from here we arrive at prisms, an interlude that at first seems relaxed until you realize that with just a combination of arpeggiated synths, percussive elements and noises plucked from the ether you are smack in the middle of a piece of music that somehow wraps its emotion around a moving image that moves you with it.
the/das ist ein aus der formation bodi bill hervorgegangenes musikprojekt von fabian fenk (gesang) und philipp koller (elektronik, mix), das 2012 in berlin gegründet wurde. der bandname soll eine neutrale bedeutung haben und in keine bestimmte richtung verweisen. ihren sound nennen die beiden techno tenderness, was in etwa chilliger afterhour-musik bzw. new romantic house entspricht. diesen fanden die geneigten hörer auf bislang über einer handvoll veröffentlichungen, darunter der lp -freezer- von 2014. dessen innig ersehnter nachfolger erscheint auf dem italienischen, von dj tennis geführten label life and death. während bei früheren releases eher der homelistening-aspekt betont wurde, gibt das produzentenduo auf -exit strategies- verstärkt clubfreundliche seiten von sich preis. dafür vermengen die zwei ziemlich geschickt, geschmackssicher und facettenreich ursprünglichen techno berliner prägung und organische soundschleifen miteinander und würzen das ganze mit verspielten kinematografischen details. ein aufwändiges verfahren, dessen umsetzung von losen skizzen über die ersten arrangements und immer wieder neuen Überarbeitungen bis zum finalen mix im studio rund drei jahre dauerte.