SINGLES/VIDEO TRACKS ROUNDUP
BY DOMINIC VALVONA

PHOTO CREDIT: ERIC BECKMAN

Montparnasse Musique by Eric Beckman

A one-off revue of recent and upcoming singles and videos being dropped that I didn’t have room for in my perusal roundups, I’m trying something very new with this post, as the blog’s never specifically done this sort of thing before.

Montparnasse Musique ‘Bonjour’
(Real World Records)

A welcoming polygenesis, South African lilted and woozy pattered beat teaser for the forthcoming album from the duo Montparnasse Musique, ‘Bonjour’ is full of pan-African essences, rhythms and goodwill. A collaborative affair, the new single features both Muambuyi and Mopero Mupemba of the Congotronics outfit, the Kassai Allstars. Another layer to this complimentary electric mix, a congruous, scene-setting music video has been created – shot on the streets of Kinshasa – by the renowned filmmaker Renaud Barrett (Systeme K!, KOKOKO!).

Carrying on from where they left off with their self-titled EP, Aero Manyelo and Nadjib Ben Bella combine their South African and Algerian roots with both the old and new to create a 21st century African hybrid that mixes ritual, ceremony and ancient mysticism with what’s happening on the streets and dancefloors of the continent now. The debut album dig, Archeology is due out on the 11th November 2022. Expect a review in the coming months.  

Future Kult ‘We’
(Action Wolf Records/AWAL)

One of my favourite renegade soundclashs of 2022, the Berlin-based Welsh-Austrian sonic-visual partnership of Sion Trefor and Benjamin Zombori pump out their fourth and newest single ‘We’ this week.

In the wake of their highly recommended self-titled pan-global sounds album (by us), arrives another eclectic, omnivorous power grab that drags the vacuous, soul-destroying and destructive selfish, image obsessed malignant hyperbole of the 21st century onto the dance floor. Moodily bouncing to the sound of barricade drums and climatic EDM, with shades of Battles, Front 242, The Juan Maclean and Midnight Juggernauts, the Future Kult duo and friends turn anguish and riled-up anger into an infectious broody anthemic electronic flashpoint. It gets better on every play I’m telling you. And Benjamin’s visual effects add a cosmic energy to the sound.

Lunar Bird ‘Venilia’

Excuse my ignorance for one second, but I did think the title of this latest diaphanous, magical enchantment from the Joan Miro-inspired Lunar Bird was just another spelling of the word ‘vanilla’. It is of course ‘Venilia’ the Roman deity associated with the winds and the sea that proves a both lofty and atavistic poetic subject for another dreamwave wisp of a song from the band. Allured hallucinatory towards that goddess, the lush Beach House-like soundtrack of synthesised fizz, gauzy psychedelic breathlessness and swimmingly vibed restlessness entwines mythology with a beautiful language of rebirth and longing; an Italian cinematic beach paradise in song – even if it is probably the band’s claimed home of Wales.

Celestial North ‘Yarrow’

Like a muse siren from the canvases of the Pre-Raphaelites or the cooed breathless yearns of a chivalry medieval tapestry depicting some magical garden of escapism, Celestial North once more steps over into the ethereal realms with this enchanted botanical themed suite. A meditative fauna dwelling score of beautiful piano tinkled reflection and sentiment, misty synthesised dreamy atmospherics and diaphanous sighed voices, has the air of something magical and sublime. ‘Yarrow’ then is something of a healing balm; nature’s ways distilled into a most stirring but pleasant mirage.

The Edinburgh artist, now based in the Lake District, has been graciously releasing tracks in the run up to the debut album, earmarked for this September. I suggest you keep an ear out for that album.

Violet Nox ‘Magnetar’
(Aumega Project Records – Germany/Infinity Vine – USA)
Available since the end of July 2022

From the Gaia attuned Eris Wakes album, another colourful, textural exploration visualisation to accompany an aria voiced (courtesy of the trained opera singer and guest vocalist Noell Dorsey) electronic state of consciousness. Yes, the Boston synth collective (working around and off the core of Dez De Carlo and Andrew Abrahamson) send out more positive if mysterious vibes with Chris Konopka’s magnetic filings turn psychedelic corrosion video for the ticking House rhythmic, phaser waves and buoyant drum pad bobbled ‘Magnetar’. Artist Konopka manages to add allure and to entrance a track that is already fairly wispily cosmic and trance-heavy.

Gabrielle Ornate ‘The Undying Sleep


Proving quite the prolific artist, the colourful mélange imbued Gabrielle Ornate has just released her seventh single, The Undying Sleep. More pop, slightly less bohemian, the language remains but the trance and maximalist production is upped another level with a slow release of cosmic fizzled star bursts, churned trip-hop like beats and St. Vincent-style guitar licks. Teardrops fall into the ether under the hippie eye of Horus on another hit record from the burgeoning artist. One to watch as they say.

Barrio Lindo ‘Espuma de Mar’
(Shika Shika)

A move by the Latin American folktronica artist Barrio Lindo (alias of Agustín Rivaldo) to create music for the listener to get lost in, this new wafted, dreamy project was made with friends on the outskirts of Buenos Aires in early 2020. The sea foamed imbued Espuma de Mar album is filled with refined, studied evocations of a jazzy tinged, ambient and woozy South America, Africa and the Caribbean, and chamber orchestral music.

The title-track traverse features the hazy blows, lingers and spells of Mariana Iturri (on flute and vocals), Nicolás Lapine (on trumpet), Ignus on drums and Rumbo Tumba and removes Latin lilted moves to somewhere entirely different, even ethereal. The album is due out on the 23rd September 2022.

Hi, my name is Dominic Valvona and I’m the Founder of the music/culture blog monolithcocktail.com For the last ten years I’ve featured and supported music, musicians and labels we love across genres from around the world that we think you’ll want to know about. No content on the site is paid for or sponsored and we only feature artists we have genuine respect for /love. If you enjoy our reviews (and we often write long, thoughtful ones), found a new artist you admire or if we have featured you or artists you represent and would like to buy us a coffee at https://ko-fi.com/monolithcocktail to say cheers for spreading the word, then that would be much appreciated.

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