Welcome back to Nothin’ But Magic; it’s been a while. For various reasons I haven’t been writing much for the past couple of years, but a particularly energising few weeks on the music front – releasing a new record, throwing some parties and doing some radio – have inspired me to blow the dust off this blog and share some of the music that’s been blowing my mind.
To start with, in the run-up to Christmas I’m going to post 18 of my favourite releases of 2018. I’ve bought (and sold) more records this year than I have for a long time, so leaving aside reissues and second-hand purchases – and a whole world of brilliant music I listened to digitally – I’ve singled out the vinyl releases from this year that I’ve enjoyed most.
First up is the Bunsens Vol. 1 EP from Turner Street Sound, on Butter Sessions. A lot of fantastic music is coming out of Melbourne at the moment, and this six-tracker, released in February, is one of the best all-round records I’ve picked up for a long time. The dub and jungle influences are clear, but the end result is pretty hard to classify and every track is pretty different. The hazed-out boogie of opening cut Mood Lamp is an obvious standout, along with the sweeping synths and electro beats of Glasshouse.
An honourable mention, too, for the Refresco EP by Turner Street Sound member Midnight Tenderness on Ken Oath records, which Laurence turned me on to this year. Another stunningly accomplished and underrated piece of work, in a housier vein. It’s just head and shoulders above most of the stuff released in 2018.