As the year draws to a close, we’re pleased to provide a retrospective glance at the music releases by Rewire artists over the past twelve months. Find below a selection of albums of 2023 from our esteemed media partners Crack Magazine, Resident Advisor, The Quietus, and The Wire as well as a sample from Bandcamp. This collection includes releases by artists who played at our past festival edition(s), as well as acts who will perform at Rewire 2024. Enjoy!
Crack Magazine’s selection ranges from the chaotic realms of streamlined techno and industrial electronics of Shanghai/Taipei-based Tzusing's 绿帽 Green Hat, passing through the intricate and multilayered world of Marina Herlop in Nekkuja to the atmospheric and contemporary R&B of Kelela's comeback album Raven. Slauson Malone 1 and Fever Ray have left an indelible mark with their distinctive approaches. Excelsior, Jasper Marsalis’ debut album demonstrates his ability to craft immersive sonic realms despite their inherent dissonance. As one of the additions to the Rewire 2024 line-up, Aunty Rayzor was mentioned by Crack for the electrifying and frenetic rhythms of Viral Wreckage. Also featured are the minimal bass, reverb-infused synth layers, and understated vocals from Maritz by Jonnine Standish (HTRK), posing questions about loss and life.
Among Resident Advisor's selection of albums, we find, once again, Kelela's mesmerizing album and Fever Ray’s newest album release. Yves Tumor's return with Praise a Lord Who Chews But Does Not Consume, brings us back to the impetuous and nostalgic world of '90s alt rock while Laurel Halo who performed a genre-bending DJ-set during Rewire 2019, released her first so-called ambient album Atlas, whose piano and strings sounds are described as "melodies that appear like clouds on the horizon before rolling away and letting the music clear up again." Among these artists we find Tirzah's third album, trip9love...?, featuring captivating piano loops on beats and ethereal atmospheric vocals, which is the fruit of a longstanding collaboration with Mica Levi.
The Quietus revealed its Albums of the Year for 2023, highlighting an eclectic mix of groundbreaking releases. Among 100 releases in the spotlight are some of those set to be performing at Rewire 2024, with notable mentions including Niecy Blues’ Exit Simulation, Ruth Anderson & Annea Lockwood Tête-à-tête, Gazelle Twin’s explorative and cathartic album Black Dog, and Brìghde Chaimbeul’s Carry Them With Us, an electrifying blend of low-vibrating and melodic sounds. Once again we find Fever Ray and Slauson Malone 1, together with Rewire 2023 artists Kelela and Mariam Rezaei. Mariam Rezaei completes her triptych with the final album, BOWN. The Quietus describes the album as "simultaneously funny and poignant, furious and calm, capable of breaking out from atmospheric drones into blistering jazz-punk attacks, and often bridging delirious humour with the emptiness felt after engaging in futile battles again and again."
Among The Wire’s favourites from the past 12 months is Rewire 2023 sound artist, composer, and performer Mariam Rezaei with BOWN, a unique collaboration with artists Theresa Winter, Luka Koenig, Alya Al-Sultani, Bobby Glue, and Gwily Edmondez, resulting in a distinctive blend of musical elements. Another noteworthy release comes from Ale Hop and Laura Robles with Aqua Dulce, a collaborative effort that skillfully deconstructs and reinterprets traditional dance rhythms from coastal Peru. Fever Ray's Radical Romantics continues to assert itself as a unique electro-pop musical experience, while Jaimie Branch's 'Fly or Die Fly or Die Fly or Die ((world war))' showcases a brilliant fusion of free jazz, dub, country, and South American rhythms.
Within The Wire’s top picks are artists from the upcoming Rewire edition, promising a diverse range of constantly evolving innovative approaches and captivating performances. Among them we find milestone artists Ruth Anderson and Annea Lockwood with Tête-à-tête, Australian avant-garde jazz trio The Necks with their new album Travel, Svitlana Nianio collaborative album with multi-instrumentalist, composer, and improviser Tom James Scott Eye of The Sea, and soloist musician and composer Laura Ortman SOUNDS RINGS SHIMMERS ENDLESS BLUR.
In Bandcamp's selection, jaimie branch's Fly or Die Fly or Die Fly or Die ((world war)) stands out with its assertive melodies and compelling grooves. Recorded mere weeks before the tragic passing of Branch, the album resounds with a poignant call for social and political transformation. Meanwhile, Loraine James expertly navigates the intricacies of arrangement in Gentle Confrontation, unraveling vulnerability and layers of pain and resilience. The album is described as an inner exploration through a self-reflective lens, delving into the marks and bruises left by a significant childhood loss.
Now that this past year's scene comes to an end and the curtain closes, we find ourselves wrapped in the melodies and rhythms that have defined this past year. We can't help but recall the music of Rewire artists who have moved forward unexplored sound territories and continue to delve deep into new musical horizons. See you in 2024!
Photo by Stephan C Kaffa