Alex Tronic Records
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Alex Tronic - Electricals EP Review

Alex Tronics Electricals EP

Alex Tronic is the nom de plume of Paul Croan, a musician who works out of Edinburgh, Scotland. His latest release is the Electricals EP - a recording which contains some of the finest electronic music I have heard in some time. A four-track, 17-minute EP may not seem to be something worthy of a lengthy discussion - but this one is.

Much like the AFX release Analogue Bubblebath, way back in 1994, this is an EP that is so creative as to nearly qualify as a full album’s worth of material. To be honest, one attraction for me is the relative obscurity of the release (at least here in the U.S.) Putting that somewhat personal bias aside though, the Electricals EP is simply wonderful music.

The four tracks the EP contains are “Panoramic” (“Walking Dream Mix“), “Send Me Five Dollars” which is presented in both the (“Hillside Mix“), and (“Five Dollar Remix”) versions, and “Sunshine Lover” (“Lounge Mix“).

As a States-side dweller, I have always had trouble with remixes, simply because I got suckered into buying 12” singles back in the eighties, when the “remixes” added up to basically nothing at all. Bite me, Def Jam.

This is why I brought up the Richard James release - it was the first time I heard music that was truly re-done, and qualified as genuinely different at all. This is the effect the Electricals EP had upon me. The 17-minutes of Alex Tronic’s Electrical EP is filled with music which is difficult to describe. It is not ambient, and it is certainly not “dance.” It falls somewhere (in a wonderful) place between the two genres.

Although this comparison may not meet with Mr. Croan’s approval (in fact it may piss him off royally), the Electricals EP reminds me (in spirit) of the early Air recordings collected on Premiers Symptomes. There is a beauty to this type of music which does not readily fall into any of the general “electronic music” categories - which makes it all the more enticing for me.

The Electricals EP is not really “dance” music per se, nor is it ambient. But it exists in a zone which I find indescribably wonderful. If any of the references I have previously offered make any sense to you, then by all means - check out Alex Tronic.

This is “electronic” music which makes the term itself seem almost irrelevant. Anyone who has ever understood the beauty of Air’s “Modular Mix” will know exactly what I am talking about. For those curious about some of the most “friendly” (yet ignored) current electronic music available - the Electricals EP is a very welcoming place to begin.
As a small Scottish label, you may not find this release easily. A click to visit the Alex Tronic Records site would be a good place to start.

By Greg Barbrick

 

ALEX TRONIC - SHIFTING SANDS

The second studio album from Edinburgh producer Paul Croan is perfect for Ibiza so it's no wonder he's now out there DJing. The album kicks off with the dreamy house of Psychedelic Fun Day which manages to go from a squelchy tribal beat to a funky get down.

Kirsty Brown adds vocals to three tunes. The lazy feel of the album continues with Lubdub, Torchlight and Lost, perfect chill-out moments that will have you drifting off lying on your sunlounger. But it's not all dreamy ambiance. Palpitations (Sunshine Lover) takes the earlier song and adds stinging drum 'n' bass. Back In The Room has a huge house beat which would make everyone in Ibiza's Privilege, the world's biggest club, hit the dance floor. Panic attack's squiggly synth line will wriggle into your brain. As always, Paul's production is spot on. Ibiza won't know what's hit it. Shifting Sands is out on May 27

Rick Fulton – Soundcheck Daily Record

MARVIN WILSON - PLANETARY CIRCUIT

Wilson has spoken influence-wise here of Robert Moog and a natural progression of sound “from acoustic to electric to electronic”. If that was his definite aim then he has succeeded admirably.

This is a record that slowly seeps into you; gentle, soothing keyboard passages letting you feel it almost even before you hear it. This comes on like the perfect summer record, all balmy airs and gentle grooves.

But then, the bass sound that flooded Our Time Will Come, Wilson’s previous album, reasserts itself, slowly taking control to stunning effect. Make no mistake; your heart will be pounding with excitement by the time this disc’s finished spinning.

This is an album with drive, to put on in your post-club comedown, late at night, with a glass of whatever your poison happens to be and thoughts of what may lie ahead on your mind. Another classic from the ATR stable.

Jonathan Muirhead – www.isthismusic.com

Becki Bardot - Summer of Love EP

At Last Scotland has our answer to Sister Bliss,What that means is a female Producer/DJ producer who can produce club-crushing tunes that tear the place up. Becki Bardot aka Rebecca Croan-has released her debut trance EP on Edinburgh`s supreme electronica label Alex Tronic Records.

She has just left for 5 months in Ibiza and could come back as one of this years biggest breakout stars.The former ballerina who had to retire due to a foot injury , has created a Huge anthem in Summer of Love . With vocals from Fiona Lynch, it is an upbeat pounding tune.

On the EP there`s a chilled out Snakestyle Ibiza Sunrise mix and a frantic Alex Tronic D&b mix . The other tracks are the big-bassed Fluke-sounding Essence and the house pose of Disco Barbie .The Summer starts here. Summer of Love is out May 6th. Rick Fulton – The Daily Record 6.5.2011

Becki Bardot - Summer of Love EP

The first great record of summer 2011 is here already. It’s called ‘Summer Of Love, which should give you an idea of where it’s coming from and the disc is Bardot by name and Bardot by nature – it’s deep, teasing and sinuously sexy without ever being gratuitous or in your face. It’s the kind of disc you’ll be playing to death before you even realise it.

The Bardot factor makes it come across like an experiment between Portishead and The Orb – aching, romantic and longing on one hand and spikily electronic on the other. Lead vocalist Fiona Lynch has all of Beth Gibbons’ throaty vocal affectations and her backing band have the kind of sonic ambition that makes you have faith in dance music all over again.

Jonathan Muirhead – Is this Music Magazine 15.4.2011

Pandacetamol - Headless EP - ATREP126

How do you deal with a New Year hangover? With some Pandacetamol.

If you buy the Headless EP now you`ll have it when the summer arrives and and you need a lie down after a heavy night. First tune Rope a Dope has a one synth line that sounds like a pussycat purring through a 303. The Beat will bounce around your brain like a game of ping pong in Tron. Flashpan takes you right back ti 1987 and the pure unbridled joy of your first rave . Pandacetamol ? It feels like Fatboy Slim going on a trip as Aphex Twin.

Rick Fulton –The Daily Record 7.1.2011

For more information on Pandacetamol see here: www.myspace.com/pandacetamol

MetalTech Alkomatik EP

FINALLY a band that put fun into Scotland's music scene. Looking like a cross between Kiss, Slipknot and Sique Sique Sputnik, MetalTech mix dance rhythms with crunching guitars and Jesus Jones- style distorted vocals. It's fantastic.

MetalTech are an Edinburgh band who already know they are great. Erik Tricity, who sings, plays guitars and does programming, has two Ziggy Stardust-like ashes on his face while The Insidious Dr. Mayhem: Guitars looks like a Japanese Kabuki clown. Meanwhile bass player Lord Thrapston Flagellator wears a gas mask. Not your average Oasis rip-off band then.

Opening dance/rock mash-up track Sell Your Soul whacks you with drum 'n' bass beats and gurning Metallica guitars. Kontrol kicks off with a house synth and deep space bass as Erik Tricity veers from the languid vocals of The Jesus and Mary Chain to Slipknot's throaty growl.

Wasted sounds like a modern version of ZZ Top as the dance rhythms bounce and the guitar snarls. You have to make these guys stars.

Alkomatik out from June 1st 2010

ALEX TRONIC Back in the Room EP

It may be called Panic Attack but Alex Tronic's first tune on his new EP is anything but stressful. In fact it's a bit of a flashforward to sunny, lazy days which will be on us in three months. From the first upbeat drum hit you know Panic Attack is going to be joyous. And with an added mesmerising Stone Roses-style bass, UFO- synth, squelchy Matrix synths and even a Spanish-sounding guitar it has TUNE written all over it. An early contender fora techno hit on Ibiza. Edinburgh-based producer Alex Tronic, aka Paul Croan, shows just how it's done. After the epic Panic Attack comes the distinctly technofunky Psychedelic Sunday driving you to dance with its rootsy drumming and Chic guitar. The title track has a booming bass, driving drums and squiggly synths and it's four to the floor with the cheeky Slappa Doobie, is an uplifting slice of Acid House. Back In The Room is out this week. www.alextronicrecords.co.uk

Rick Fulton –The Daily Record (c) 2010 Daily Record; Glasgow (UK). Provided by ProQuest LLC. All rights Reserved.

The Psychedelic Manifesto - Lysergic Sushi

ANOTHER stunning release from Edinburgh electro label Alex Tronic Records. London-based Chris Garland and Rene Steuns kick off with Forever, an instant club classic.

It begins with singer Ilona singing a very choral sounding “free” before a trance bass kicks intakes you off to a blissed out state. A top tune that would work in clubs around the world from Ibiza to Scotland the duo must think highly of it as there are two mixes of it at the end of the album. An ambient mix and a wonderful churning Acid House 808 remix.

Second track on the album does what it says on the tin. Higher has a perky beat which will keep the knees up, epic guitars and Chris’ otherworldly vocals. Shake Your Mind is faster and dirtier mixing Eastern vocals with knife sharp synth hits. Giorgio is more trance while Time veers to Erasure bouncy Europop. Perfectlight adds some Kraftwerk work while Timeslip is an ambient episode of Space 1999. A trip in more ways than one.The album is out now.

Rick Fulton –The Daily Record (c) 2010 Daily Record; Glasgow (UK). Provided by ProQuest LLC. All rights Reserved.

For more information on The Psychedelic Manifesto see here:www.myspace.com/thepsychedelicmanifesto

Keser - Robo_Ghos****t

If Martin Hannett had lived to see 2009, I’m sure he’d have loved to produce an album like Robo_Ghost. As it happens, Keser have done a pretty good job without him. The dub-eyed urban soundscapes that Hannett unleashed with Joy Division’s Unknown Pleasures are translated in the modern vernacular; on 3 Point Play (Set Piece), robotic beats are pumped out of drum machines rather than kits, whilst blasts of white noise replace boxy punk power chords. Amongst this post-rock ambience, however, there’s a track with enough pop appeal hat it seems oddly bereft of a lead vocal: the deceivingly daft-titled Acts of Dog.

Starting out like an early U2 ballad, the song is soon blitzed by a bombing raid of dangerously dirgy guitars before succumbing to a blissful fadeout. It's a collection so image-laden that it dares you to write a dystopian movie screenplay, just so it can provide the soundtrack.

Joe Barton The Skinny

Marvin Wilson Our Time Will Come ATRCD116

The third album released by Marvin and again released on Edinburgh`s electronica label Alex Tronic Records.

Our Time Will come is an instrumental mix of blissed out pounding rage. Whilst the opener Majestic Sleep would be perfect for the sun lounger on a morning after. The second song The Brink slams the senses like guitar-less Prodigy. Drum and bass and plastic tear synth sounds drive the song into trance heaven. You can almost see the Kraftwerk train wheels on the stripped down Good to See You Last track.

Connecting Stars slaps your face like a laser fish. Top Stuff.

Rick Fulton –The Daily Record

 

IS THIS MUSIC CD REVIEWS FEBRUARY 2009 – 03 – ALEX TRONIC – “TO INFINITY” ALBUM

There’s a real air of celebration present here, as this disc marks the 10th album released on Alex Tronic Records. The set’s sheer tightness alone is breathtaking. Tracks are there for just long enough for you to get into them before ending. This means you immediately want to hear them again... read more of this review
©JONATHAN ROBERT MUIRHEAD 2009 Is This Music

Alex Tronic - To Infinity (ATR CD 072)

When the boss of a label decides to put out his own record - there's going to be a sucking in of breath. Has he just set the label up as a vanity project, is this really what it's all about, if he's not very good will he hole the good ship? Fortunately for Alex Tronic (realname Paul Croan) of the great Edinburgh-based Alex Tronic Records - he's got the goods and then some... read more of this review.
Rick Fulton The Daily Record

The latest offering from Alex Tronic records is a real treat, for a number of reasons. The opening notes of the first track Life's A Dream (In my Scratcher) suggest that the record may be going down a darker route, but within seconds the tone changes to one that promises a brighter journey... read more of this review.
Chris Duncan The Skinny **** fourstars

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Title:               Alex Tronic – To Infinity

Label:              Alex Tronic Records

To Infinity can loosely be described as a psychedelic techno-pop album, the work of Paul Croan – who owns the Alex Tronic label.

Eclecticism is Croan’s biggest strength, converging splayed guitar chords with ascending Roland 303 notations. Female vocals add a haunting quality to many tracks, swaying to the echo of luscious Ambient-Techno by employing some soothing orchestral strings and spiralling effects.

To Infinity is a more than passable effort from Croan, with three or four very very good tracks. Although its combination of liquidised guitar and earthy beats does tend to drown out some of the subtler elements of the album, when the production is spotless the results are consuming. 

Score
Danny Turner Future Music [FM 7/10]

Top Downloads
Chiller
Death Of Light
Life’s A Dream

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NEU GESTALT: Altered Carbon (CD on Alex Tronic Records)

This CD from 2008 offers 67 minutes of gentle ilbient electronic tuneage.

Neu Gestalt is Les Scott.

This music blends elements of ambient and contemporary EM with a touch of ilbient glitchiness to produce remarkably dreamy tuneage.

The electronics are gentle and slippery. Background tones manifest as barely audible textures, tenuous approximations of the noise found between spaces.

Keyboard-driven chords possess a languid presence, emerging in the sparse mix to express themselves with grace and generate soothing melodic enhancements.

Percussives are present, but not all of them are the conventional kind. Some rhythms stem from the applications of glitchy sounds looped to establish a tempo akin to flickering diode sparks. These beats are almost seductive in their softness. The more normal examples of percussion are similarly understated, relegated to a vantage deep within the flow where they flavor the music instead of driving it.

The ilbient aspects exist in a carefully restrained equality with the other electronics. Their normal harshness is muted, making them immersed effects swarming under the surface.

These compositions are designed to induce passive contemplation. The melodies are pleasant and fluid, crafted to lull and open the inner mind to itself. The auxiliary effects serve to stimulate cognition during this meditative pacification.

Michael Chocholak :Sonic Curiosity Website and Magazine .

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Roy's Iron DNA - Men In Wax Jackets (ATR CD 037 )

SOUNDCHECK NOVEMBER 2 - Roys Iron DNA


SOUNDCHECK have been big supporters of this band since they were Ordinary Son.
With a new name (it's an anagram puzzle fans) Ian Thompson -singer/guitars/beats has upped the ante for the Edinburgh-based band.
The album will be helped by its release on fizzing-electro label Alex Tronic Records home of Keser and AsA.
With Ian's in-tune Ian Brown blissed-out voice and chilled out beats this is an album for down tempo moments or the ironing. Album opener Steppin' On has been flown in from Ibiza with its great lyric: 'what do you think we are?/some kind of wannabe/some kind of celebrity" How many clubbers have thought that of each other?
Quite simply this is a fantastic album. It mixes beats, breaks, trip hop, eighties synth and chill-out as well as any of the chart stars you can name.
For those who like to dance, even in your living room, this is essential.
Their album Men In Wax Jackets is out on Monday.
The band play Po Na Na, Edinburgh tomorrow (Sat).
www.roysirondna.co.uk

Roy’s Iron DNA
A band at obvious right angles to the trebly guitar wielding, drainpipe wearing, side-shed sporting indie spods but that’s what makes their brooding racket so appealing. Like The Beta Band on serious downers, they conjure up the same spooky dread as Massive Attack’s Mezzanine with a bit less paranoia with a sound that blends all manner of wobbly, quaking electronic trinkets with understated live instrumentation. At the heart of this stramash however, are songs. Good songs.
The Hive, Edinburgh, Fri 30 Nov; King Tut’s, Glasgow, Sun 2 Dec. The album Men in Wax Jackets is out now on Alex Tronic Records.

Malcolm Jack and Mark Robertson present five more aspirant acts to look out for

The List Nov 07

Roy`s Iron DNA -men in wax jackets review ,Is this Music Magazine

Men In Wax Jackets (Alex Tronic) There’s a very Stone Roses-esque swagger to this album. This works beautifully, as there’s a real groove on display here. There’s a lovely, moody undercurrent to the songs here, making this an album of real force and power. Fierce, vibrating basslines shake the floor from under your feet while songs like ‘Silent Majority’ have hooks that linger in the brain long after the disc has finished spinning. This alone should make the album appeal to those of us who crave something a little deeper and darker in our sounds. Unlike many recent debutantes, who have crammed all of their best ideas onto one disc, in the hope that they’ll work, the strengths here are pace and measurement. These guys sound like they mean business. This is an album of real heart, venom and power, which deserves to be heard by as wide an audience as possible. Jonathan Muirhead

ROYS IRON DNA
Men In Wax Jackets (Album)
Released 12th November
Odd name, but very pleasing sounds. Roy’s Iron
DNA play super-chilled, ambient electronica
and glitchy trip-hop set to vocals spookily akin
to The Stone Roses. Psychedelic guitars and cool
beats add to the experience. While it’s most likely
to be described as a post-club album, it actually
reminds me more of snowscapes and the mountains,
more woolly hats and Roni Size than Ibiza
sunsets. Perhaps I’m just pining for my winter
holiday.
Narc Magazine Nov 07

November 8th, 2007 at 15:00 by Matthew Laidlow

Heckler Spray , Music News Celeb

If we were to do an award ceremony for bands we feature in this feature, we would definitely consider featuring Roys Iron DNA as the winner for best band name.

Sometimes it's sad to see that a band that will use swearing in their name to gain attention. Calling yourself Shitting Robots, for example, might be funny when Zane Lowe says it on Radio 1 once, but it also automatically eliminates you from Top 40 airplay as it’s deemed to offensive. It’s a shame we weren’t in charge of the chart laws - we’d include all sorts of stuff that's not currently allowed. Not that there’s anything offensive about this week's band Roys Iron DNA, but we’d have them on constant heavy rotation on the radio nonetheless. 

Trip Hop hasn’t seen a great deal of high-profile mega-artists emerge from the vastly-underrated genre to capture the audience’s imagination lately. There's still the old guard of household names like Portishead, Massive Attack and DJ Shadow knocking about, with deeper followers of the genre finding the occasional scrap from Amon Tobin and Unkle to cherish. 

But what exactly is Trip Hop to someone who isn’t familiar with any of the above mentioned artists? Using a combination of turntables, samples, drums and orchestral-sounding strings, a product is created that lies somewhere between downtempo, house music and hip-hop, although with this very distinct sound, the vocals really stand out more than any other genre. But that can be a problem, too.

Many Trip Hop records all have a very strong female vocal on them, which tends to make them slightly generic-sounding. But men can create similarly haunting vocal effects and, putting two and two together, you may have just clicked why we have chosen Roys Iron DNA this week. Not only have they cracked the Trip Hop formula down to a fine art, they also manage to nail the vocals.

In terms of musical development, Roys Iron DNA appear to have been going for quite some time, but have only released one limited edition 7” single, a digital download. But coming soon however is their debut album, entitled Men And Wax Jackets, the music from which is already available on MP3 for you to download. But a physical copy that you can hold, smell and lick is not available until Monday. 

A small collection of songs are on Roys Iron DNA's MySpace to whet your appetite. These songs, which almost seem too perfect for the pending bleak winter months, really do seem like tracks for those odd moments of confusion when nothing really seems to be going right and everything you can do is uncontrollable.  

Silent Majority which is taken from the album, starts with the twinkling of guitars before a glitchy crash of electronics bullies its way into the mix. While the lyrics are listenable, they are finely cut into the song which almost makes you have to listen that little bit harder to make out exactly what is being said. Never a bad thing. Having crystal quality vocals would only ruin this fine song. 

Men In Wax Jackets starts off so calmly that when we cranked our stereo up to hear it, we nearly deafened ourselves when the steady pattern of drums came in. A soft swirling mix of synths combined with the drums almost takes to a snow-covered landscape where the sky is grey and there’s hardly anything going on at all. 

From our descriptions it may not come over as the happiest and upbeat sounding music. But this is moody-sounding music that will appeal to those with a love of experimentation and finding the inner beauty in music. Just listen for yourselves. 

ELECTRONICA

Rather than looking to Detroit or Paris, this compilation is a reminder that Edinburgh’s electronic music scene is alive and well. The first in a series of chill-out albums produced by Alex Tronic on his eponymous Leith label, showcasing ambient and electro artists, the album includes several lush, laidback moments, and is a useful round-up of Scottish artists poised for big things. Under a dreamy and euphoric umbrella of electronica, there’s room for Joe Acheson Quartet’s ‘Celtic Harp’, a floaty, jazz-soaked soundscape of breaks and rolling drums; English producer Marvin Wilson’s piano-heavy trip hop, and Scottish hip hop from MC Solareye of the DoPE Soundsystem, who has hooked up with Hooverfish on ‘The Rain’.

(Claire Sawers)

Published in issue 579 of The List (4 July 2007)

Alex Tronic Records Volume1 - Various Artists

A brilliant exhibition of talent. The collection begins with some quality trip-hop by Strangest Thing Dr A & Naz-Boogie Down is a classy way to start of any album . The album moves through some ritzy tunes with El Bib taking it to reggae and dub fans,then some nice Scottish hip -hop -tronica coming from Hooverfish and Mc Solareye,much missed since his performances with D.o.P.E ceased. Sixpeopleaway have a gorgeous glitchy ,acoustic number,followed by Keser with a wonderfully rich instramental/electronica piece. A few tracks later some squeaky clean down-tempo material from Pockets of Resistance slots in nicely .Alex Tronic save the best for last with AsA (pronounced :Orsa) injecting Picture Perfect Dreams . This is a band which will be turning heads in the coming year . On the whole the album is extremely varied . The only thing that doesn`t change is the production quality and raw talent which is consistent throughout

Pete Burns, Beats : The Skinny Magazine :June 07

Scottish-based music producer Alex Tronic highlights his relatively new label`s Chillout aesthetic in the first of a proposed series of compilation CDs .This is certainly an eclectic and engaging debut compilation,servicing a diverse selection of sub-genres from Dub Hip Hop and Irish Folk to Groove and Electronica yet , still predominately Chillout .As with most compilations ATR Vol1 has its rough edges , but the majority of the tracks ( by a host of previously undiscovered artists) delivers a consistency and quality that`s well woth checking out - especially if your into scouting fresh electronic talent.

7/10 Danny Turner , Future Music June 07

ADD THESE TO YOUR PLAYLIST: El Bib , Dub Vizier:Marvin Wilsom, Velocity Experience, Pockets of Resistance, Glow.

A JUST amazing compilation from Scots electronica label Alex Tronic Records.
The first in what they hope to be a series of compilations features AsA, Pockets of Resistance and Keser, who are well-known to Souncheck. The album opens with the chilled-out dub bass of Boogie Down by Strangest Thing, Dr A & Naz.
Then there's the trumpet reggae of El Bib's Dub Vizier and the hip hop folk of The Rain, a collaboration between Hooverfish and McSolareye. An incredible album that dazzles the senses.

Rick Fulton :The Daily Record / Soundcheck :Friday 29th April 07

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SCOTLAND, UK.

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