Under The Radar: LateNightTales
Rarely is there a record label that is as interesting as LateNightTales. The label put out one of my favorite records this year–Khruangbin‘s The Universe Smiles Upon You–, another record that is quickly becoming my most played–Sasha‘s Scene Delete–, and most recently David Holmes‘ self-titled compilation. All these releases land somewhere in the instrumental electronica area of the music spectrum, and all of them take their listeners on an intense journey through their grooves. Basically, if you’re looking for a great (new) record, you cannot go wrong with a LateNightTales release.
While I do love Khruangbin’s The Universe Smiles Upon You, I want to talk about a single and remix release LateNightTales put out with them. Taking “People Everywhere (Still Alive)” and twisting it through dub magic, Khruangbin, Vuelo, and LateNightTales make lightning strike twice. The song’s original mix is wonderful in The Universe Smiles Upon You, but dubbed, it gains a mellower groove.
Aside from their releases, LateNightTales does a wonderful job of housing their records. The aforementioned Khruangbin album is pressed on white wax and has a locked groove on side B (that hides the record’s hidden track “Bin Bin X”). Likewise, Sasha’s Scene Delete can come in the standard black, triple LP edition or in a box set that includes clear vinyl, a memory stick of unmixed, high sample-rate versions of the songs, and large artwork. Truly, LateNightTales not only cares about the music they release but also how it manifests in the physical world.
And Sasha manifests so much in Scene Delete. The 21 track album flows seamlessly from side A to side F. Full of ambient house, Scene Delete is as much a dance album as it is an immersive musical experience. Sasha accrues power as each track blends into the next to create twisting corridors of sound–it is an album that has a power in its existence as a whole. That said, the track “Time After Time” burns with a radiance that is rare.
Like Sasha’s record, David Holmes’ self-titled is a swelling collage of electronic textures. David Holmes’ LateNightTales release is a chilling and ambient compilation of some of the DJ’s tastiest choices. Whether an acoustic guitar track (with modulation) or a swelling ambient groove, this compilation blends tones perfectly to make an album that, while made from disparate parts, comes together perfectly as a unified record.
All this gushing is to say LateNightTales is putting out some fantastic electronic(ish) albums. If you haven’t peeped their discography, you should change that immediately. Khruangbin, Sasha, and David Holmes have been some of my favorites on this UK label, but their releases are deep and strong. Whether you want something electronic and lush or acoustic and chill, LateNightTales will have the record to slake your musical thirst.