Thursday, 18 January 2018

Metroland's "Man In A Frame" EP's Reviewed

Metroland return with their first new material for 2 years with a new single "Man In A Frame".

The release is available as 2 Digital Editions, the first is a straight forward single with a B-Side called "F8", as well as a 3 track remix package.


"Man In A Frame" is a fantastic track, which features elements of both their "Mind The Gap" and "Triadic Ballet" albums, it is a well constructed track, with excellent drum & percussion sounds as well as beautiful sequencer parts over a throbbing, driving arrangement, superb use of vocals and vocal samples, with a powerful lead synth also in the mix, an excellent track, which bodes well for the new album. The interesting fact about this single, is that it is not included on the forthcoming new album, although it does set the tone for the concept of the new album.

"F8". the B-Side is a bit of a departure from the usual Metroland sound palette, we still have excellent drums and sequencers, but it is the haunting, dark synth elements that make this track stand out, again fabulous use of vocal samples. I really love this track and it shows yet again that even B-Sides have to be of a high standard for Metroland, this is one of the bands best B-Sides to date.


Next we have the Remix EP, which starts with Metroland's own Extended Version, fans of those 80s extended 12 inch singles will be delighted with this, as they have stuck to the blueprint of the 7 inch and re-edited it to the longer format and it is brilliant.

Following that we have a real treat, a Maschine Brennt remix of the B-Side "F8", I am very familiar with the work of Maschine Brennt and they are a perfect choice for remixing a Metroland track, Joacim, the man behind Maschine Brennt, has given this a real "Kraftwerk" overhaul, it is fantastic, a superb piece of work that also strengthens the fact that this is an extraordinary B-Side.

Finally we have a remix by The Frixion of the track "Man In A Frame", lots of new elements to this  remix which give it a fuller sound and more of a Synthpop feel. They stick to the original arrangement without overdoing the remix, which works very well, I like the way the drums and percussion have been beefed up on this remix, an excellent addition to the package.

Finally a word on the artwork, Metroland are well known for ensuring the artwork is as important as the music, they want to give value to the whole product and they have done a superb job of the artwork as you can see from the images here, I liken it to the work of Peter Saville, who has worked with New Order for years. I always find Metroland's artwork to be interesting and original and it is pleasing to see that they do put as much effort into this aspect of their work as they do with the music.

There is no doubting these EPs are worthy editions to the Metroland catalogue and fans will love all aspects of this release, I for one cannot wait for the new album! 9/10

More details about the release, including where you can purchase the EP's will be updated on here as soon as we have them.

Keep an eye on Metroland's Official Homepage and their Facebook page as well for more information.

Metroland's Official Homepage

Metroland's Facebook page

Wednesday, 17 January 2018

New Jonteknik Album "Alternative Arrangements" Reviewed

Jonteknik returns with a new album called, "Alternative Arrangements", which sees John call on various vocalists to produce an album of cover versions, with many of my personal favourite tracks covered, a who's who of 80s music and beyond.


Opening with the Tears For Fears track "Suffer The Children" is a smart move, as it is an outstanding version, vocals are provided by Bear Feathers and they are truly excellent and work very well with Jon's minimalistic arrangement. Listening to this track, it is staggering Tears For Fears didn't have a massive hit with it.

Next is a cover of Depeche Mode's "Nothing", on this track Jon has colaborated with Jimm Kjelgaard and once again it is a magnificent version, there are more synths used on this version than Depeche Mode's original. An excellent version.

Pet Shop Boys are probably in my top 3 favourite bands of all time and it is pleasing to see a cover version of "Rent". A slightly slowed down version with a minimal arrangement that works well. Jon has turned to Martin Philip for vocals, someone Jon has worked with before and he does a sterling job of the vocals. A very interesting approach to this track which I like.

Soft Cell are another guilty pleasure for me, I loved their music, especially "Bedsitter", "What" and "Torch", the latter has been recorded for this album and what a fantastic job Jon and Tom Sanderson have done, they have kept true to the original with great effect, not an easy track to cover but boy have they pulled it off, brilliant!

Hands up......who would attempt an electronic version of a Smiths song?? An impossible task you would think, however, Jon has pushed the boundaries of his music skills, to make an arrangement that works really well, of the Smiths track "Please, Please, Please, Let Me Get What I Want", he has also done the vocals on the track, definitely an interesting cover version.

Next on the album, a track I rate as one of the best of all time, the Joy Division track "Decades", this is simply a beautiful and respectful cover version executed perfectly, Stephen Newton does a perfect job of the vocals, which are in keeping with Ian Curtis' mournful vocals on the original, and the music arrangement is superb and every bit as good as the original. Perfection!

An OMD cover version was always going to feature on this album and the track chosen is a more experimental track of theirs, "Of All The Things We've Made", which was on the OMD album "Dazzle Ships". I love the synth reworking of this track, the original featured Guitar, great use of strings, percussion and choir sounds, a beautiful arrangement which features Peter Fitzpatrick of Circuit3 on vocals, this version is moody and atmospheric and very impressive.

The next song is a bit of an oddity, it is a cover of The Doors track "People Are Strange", again featuring Peter Fitzpatrick on vocals, this is another track that is very interesting to listen to as of course the original was far from electronic, but Jon and Peter have succeeded in producing a very good interpretation of the track.

The Human League instrumental track "Gordon's Gin", a track off their album "Travelogue", is next and is a true to the original arrangement, I like the additional percussion and drum elements in this version as well as the synth sounds, some nice additional parts on this version to. It is a longer version that builds up brilliantly. It keeps it's slow pace throughout unlike the Human League original. It would have been nice to see the 2nd half half of the songs tempo notched up a bit.

The album closes with a cover of The Police track "Invisible Sun", which has a "Joy Division" overhaul, never been a fan of the work of Sting, so I'm not the best person to judge this track, probably my least favourite track on the album, it doesn't grab me like most of the tracks on the album.

Tackling a covers album is never the easiest of tasks at the best of times, but Jon & friends have produced an excellent album of songs, that are more obscure than the usual 80s fodder that gets covered and that has to be commended, their are some real gems on display here, "Suffer The Children", "Torch", "Decades" and "Of All The Things We've Made".

All in all a very enjoyable experience listening to this album.

8.5/10

We will be featuring tracks from the album on January's and February's i-Select shows on White Lion Radio.

The album is being released on white vinyl as a Limited Edition, which will also include a promo CD.

For full details about the release check out the Jonteknik Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/Jonteknik

or Jon's official website:

http://www.jonteknikmusic.com/

Monday, 15 January 2018

Maximum 80s (Volume 55)

White Lion Radio have released Edition 55 of Maximum 80s.

This is a series of shows that feature nothing but the very best in 1980s 12 Inch Singles.

The biggest hits on the biggest format from a classic decade......the 1980s.


Listen On Mixcloud

Listen On Hearthis.at

Track List

Madonna - Like A Virgin (Extended Dance Remix)
Genesis - Invisible Touch (Special Remix Version)
Erasure - Chains Of Love (The Unfettered Mix)
Book Of Love - Boy (Extended Mix)
Visage - The Anvil (Dance Mix)
Fleetwood Mac - Everywhere (Extended Version)
Kajagoogoo - Too Shy (American Midnight Mix)
M - Pop Muzik (Long Version)
Kim Wilde - You Keep Me Hanging On (Extended Mix)
Howard Jones - Hide & Seek (Long Version)

Monday, 8 January 2018

Rubik's 80s Mix (Volume 55)

Edition #55 of Rubik's 80s Mix is now out on White Lion Radio.


This a series of shows that includes the very best in 80s music all in one continuous mix.

The biggest hits from the greatest decade in music history!

A show guaranteed to bring back so many happy memories!

Listen to the show on Mixcloud here

Listen on Hearthis.at here

Full Playlist

George Michael - A Different Corner
Eddy Grant - I Don't Wanna Dance
Ultravox - Dancing With Tears In My Eyes
Yazoo - Don't Go
David Bowie - Fashion
Electronic - Getting Away With It
Thompson Twins - Hold Me Now
Elton John - I'm Still Standing
The Pointer Sisters - Jump (For My Love)
Genesis - Land Of Confusion
Bon Jovi - Livin' On A Prayer
Hot Chocolate - No Doubt About It
Starship - Nothings Gonna Stop Us Now
Depeche Mode - People Are People
Simple Minds - Promised You A Miracle
Hazell Dean - Whatever I Do (Wherever I Go)

Electrical Connections - A Tribute To Kraftwerk

White Lion Radio presents to you "Electrical Connections - A Tribute To Kraftwerk", a show dedicated to the godfathers of electronic music.


The show features music by true Kraftwerk fans and includes tracks by Metroland, Kosmonaute, Jonteknik, Maschine Brennt, Neon, Datapope, Deutsche Bank, Kevin Lux, Kretz, Silicon Machines and Lobtec.

If you are a fan of Kraftwerk this show is not to be missed!

Listen to the show on Mixcloud here

Listen to the show on Hearthis.at here


Playlist for the show:

Metroland - Led Me Think (Gary Hunter's Less Pondering 7 Inch Radio Edit)
Kosmonaute - Robotic Love
Maschine Brennt - Sistema
Silicon Machines - Basic
Kevin Lux - Music Language Machine
Lobtec - Waiting For The World
Jonteknik - Prospero
DATAPOP - Radioklang
Maschine Brennt - 60 Seconds
Metroland - Close To Me (Gary Hunter's 7 Inch Radio Edit)
Kretz - Mechanical Men (Marboss Remix)
DATAPOP - Unterwegs (Gary Hunter's Radio Edit)
Jonteknik - Forever Lasts Longest
Kevin Lux - Elektro Lux
Neon - Future Technology (Gary Hunter's 7 Inch Radio Edit)
Maschine Brennt - 1992
Deutsche Bank - Grand Unified Theory
Metroland - Utopia (Gary Hunter's 7 Inch Radio Edit)