Simian Mobile Disco – Welcome To Sideways

Album Review by Donald Shields | 04 Nov 2016
Album title: Welcome To Sideways
Artist: Simian Mobile Disco
Label: Delicacies
Release date: 11 Nov

Released on Simian Mobile Disco’s Delicacies label, which boasts work by the likes of Alex Niggeman, Roman Flugel, Bicep, and Agoria, this new album is the first piece of work released by the duo of James Ford and Jas Shaw in two years. Prior to this album was Whorl, recorded live rather impressively in California using only five pieces of kit. Where Whorl has an ambient electronic feel in the style of Boards of Canada with a dabble of Thomas Bangalter, the big-room techno sound of Welcome to Sideways exposes Simian Mobile Disco’s multi-faceted abilities.

An excellent selection of stripped back, analogue, grass-roots techno that would feel right at home in a big dark room filled with affectionate sweaty people, the album consists of nine tracks in total. Only Face to Face with a Spoon feels out of place on this record, stuck between SMD’s electro leanings and a strained effort to convert to techno.

The pace and intensity is lowered on Flying or Falling and Drones Follow Me Everywhere, which feels more reminiscent of the outfit’s previous albums. But with the pounding reminder of an impressively constructed drum pattern on the former, and the futuristic, eerie come down of the latter, it’s a well-rounded selection of tracks on an album that can sit comfortably next to your best Fabric and Watergate compilations.

Listen to: Far Away From a Distance, Staring at All This Handle