Top 10 Electronic Albums, February 2012
by Philip Sherburne | February 29, 2012
This month's Top 10 electronic albums mostly avoid the dancefloor, but not entirely. Barcelona's John Talabot has whipped up a woozy whirl through club music's outskirts with his debut album -- even though it works just as well as indie pop, if you prefer -- while Ital's Planet Mu debut views house music through the prism of post-punk and gauzy, industrial electronics. (Or something. It's a trip.) Inhabiting more downbeat grounds, France's Air soundtrack a silent film from 1902, and Ghostly artist Mux Mool extends his perspective on abstract hip-hop.
On the outer limits, the improvising trio Tetras explores the boundaries of free jazz and drone, while Harmonious Thelonious delivers his third album of African music-box overdrive, and the electro producer Andrea Parker reworks Daphne Oram's decades-old tapes. Fans of Autechre, Monolake and Marcel Dettmann, meanwhile, will all be thrilled by Rrose's 2011 collaboration with Bob Ostertag for the Sandwell District label, which only recently saw a welcome digital release.
And then there's Grimes: Her debut album of chirpy electro-pop may not be to everyone's tastes, but it's certainly a different kind of album -- and, in my own experience, a grower.
For good measure, we've included links to 10 recent EPs from the fringes of electronic dance music.