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Rock - Released February 14, 2020 | Madlib Invazion

It's been nearly nearly three years since London's Heliocentrics issued 2017's mind-blowing one-two punch with A World of Masks, and their soundtrack for The Sunshine Makers. Drummer Malcolm Catto and bassist Jake Ferguson, the band's producers, reached a new plateau with those releases. They forged an aesthetic that explored numerous Indo-Asian traditions, library music, fractured '70s funk, film scores, beat jazz, and more and applied them as carefully woven sonic experiments. They realized long ago that the band's restlessness is their m.o. Here, they've managed to deliver a rainbow stew of hybridized genres, production techniques, subtle but effective sound effects, and massive grooves. The Infinity of Now is the Heliocentrics debut offering for Madlib's Madlib Invazion label. Vocalist Barbora Patkova returns to the fold as a full member. She appears on most of the album, including the set's first mind-melting single, "Burning Wooden Ship." Paced by Catto's funky breakbeat shuffle, reverb, analog synth blips, Dan Smith's open-tuned modal guitars, and a Krautrock bass line, these traits commingle in a droning melody before the instruments clash amid a dubwise mix, as Patkova effortlessly croons through the middle. "Venom," is a snaky melody framed languidly by the rhythm section, bluesy distorted guitar, telegraph key Farfisa organ Patkova's nearly June Tyson-esque vocal that transforms itself into something regal in the bridge. At the midway point, the track breaks wide open as the quartet reference and challenge one another as broken beat funk meets a nocturnal psychedelia. "Elephant Walk," with saxophonists Jason Yarde (baritone) and Colin Webster (alto) blowing free into a hypnotic circular drum'n'bass vamp and acid-drenched organ, that increases in intensity until it fades. The spiky Afro-beat in "Hanging by a Thread" melds Afro-Latin drums and spiraling psych-blues guitar with a fractured funk bass line chugs along to a shimmering, steamy organ pulse. "People Wake Up," the nearly ten-minute closer, is the most tripped-out thing here. A fuzzy Indian banjo (courtesy of Jack Yglesias) Keith Levene-esque snaky electric guitar (circa PiL's Metal Box era), a sparse doomy, dub bass line, sirens, flute, Raven Bush's strings, and Patkova's airy vocal, all execute a ghostly melody that refuses to be anchored. It hovers, floats, mutters, stutters, and purrs. As the band strips it down to nothing, it re-emerges on the other side as a mutant jazz-funk jam messing with time and space. Amid drones, wafting sound effects (Sylvia Hallett's hurdy-gurdy and sarangi among them) and broken beats, it ratchets in intensity: A droning circular bass line frames the psych effects to usher in a circular rhythmic vamp that dissembles itself amid sawing strings, steely distortion, and industrial feedback, engage in modal interplay that radically but seamlessly reshapes the band's process and force until all the music has left to do is fade abruptly. The Heliocentrics multivalently textured sound is now a trademark signature. Infinity of Now is more adventurous, disciplined, and focused than any of their previous outings. Its dark and murky sonic vision is at once completely out of step with everything else as well as miles ahead of it. ~ Thom Jurek

Jazz - Released June 30, 2017 | Soundway Records


Alternative & Indie - Released May 26, 2017 | Soundway Records

Since their first appearance on The Outsider by DJ Shadow in 2006, the Heliocentrics haven't ceased their wild careening course, taking in jazz, Ethio-jazz, hip-hop, psychedelic music, kraut-rock and musique concrète. The London-based crew, led by drummer/producer Malcolm Catto has even crossed swords with figures as diverse as Mulatu Astake, Orlando Julius, Melvin Van Peebles and Gaslamp Killer, and has been hailed by Madlib and even David Axelrod. The group, originally instrumental, which works out of its vintage analogue studio in East London, the Quatermass Sound Lab, invited in a singer for World Of Masks: a young Slovak named Barbora Patkova alias Babs. The result is a fourth album, which draws the Heliocentrics, who were already solid and rich in grooves and rhythms, onto the path of other, as-yet-unexplored, and addictive, dimensions. © MD/Qobuz

Ambient/New Age - Released April 20, 2009 | Now Again Records

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Rock - Released January 17, 2020 | Now Again Records