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Listed: Emptyset + Githead

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Every Friday, Dusted Magazine publishes a series of music-related lists compiled by our favorite artists. This week: Bristol techno duo Emptyset and Colin Newmanís post-Wire group, Githead.

Listed: Emptyset + Githead


Emptyset is the Bristol, U.K. duo of James Ginzburg and Paul Purgas. Until now, Ginz was known mostly as the manager of Multiverse Music, Pinchís brotherhood of labels. Ginz oversees (among others) Tectonic, Jokerís Kapsize label, and Octoberís Caravan, which released Emptyset. Purgas is a curator of contemporary art and is involved in the London electro party Body Hammer. The two met in 2005 through the Bristol music scene and found they shared a love for techno. But it wasnít until 2007 that Emptyset released their first 12Ē, Acuphase. Two years and two singles later, the duo released their debut full-length earlier this month, and promptly blew away a few of us here at Dusted. Ginz and Purgas claim the minimal aesthetics of Moritz von Oswald & Mark Ernestusís Chain Reaction and Mika Vainioís Sahko label as inspiration, while at the same time incorporating Bristolís signature dubstep rhythms and Purgasí expertise in sound installations. Their ďexperimentĒ is quite simply one of the best albumís of 2009.


1. Herbie Hancock - Man ChildThis is the album that completely changed the way I listened to music, from music being a series of emotional and situational reference points to it being a direct experience of sound as movement, shape and colour. It is a veritable textbook of rhythm; anything you could need to know about creating a world out of interlocking rhythmical parts and creating a oneness from a series of disparate elements is in this album in its most perfect form.

2. Brian Eno - Music for AirportsAs this is the album I have listened to most over the course of my life, I assume it permeates everything I make.

3. Tim Hecker - Harmony in UltravioletThis was the first album I heard in a while which sounded like a new music to me, it feels more like an organic event captured rather than a contrived planned creation.

4. Gza - Liquid SwordsThis is the high water mark of the RZA production, cold skewed breaks and perfectly crusted soul samples compressed into throbbing rhythmic objects. It was on repeat in my dads car when I was a 16 year old stoner trying to get lost in the countryside outside of DC.

5. Echospace presents Deepchord - The Coldest SeasonPeverelist pointed me in the direction of this before a tour in Australia, and I listened to it for the entirety of the 18 hour flight. A perfectly contained alpha wave universe and my favourite techno album ever.


1. Underground Resistance - X101The prototype techno concept albums which still still stands the test of time with its raw production and hard line electronic manifesto. The sound that spawned the Detroit-Berlin axis.

2. Russell Haswell - Live SalvageHaswellís solution to the live album, an archive of captured and fragmented audio recordings from around the world presented in stark and unrelenting honesty.

3. Robert Hood - Internal EmpireA selection of some of the most advanced and forward thinking reductive compositions ever produced.

4. Ryoji Ikeda - DataplexA marvel of purist design Ikeda delivers a perfectly crafted avant-garde rendering of the digital age.

5. Manuel Goettsching - E2-E4From the founder of Ash Ra Tempel came the album that changed the landscape of electronic music forever an epic masterpiece from an undeniable legend.


Githead was originally intended as a one-off collaboration between Colin Newman of Wire, his wife, the artist Malka Spigel, Max Franken of Minimal Compact and Robin Rimbaud of Scanner. That early gig, for Swim Recordís 10th anniversary in 2004, soon turned into a more continuous project. Githeadís first album Profile came out in 2005 and Art Pop followed two years later. Landing, the bandís third album, builds layered guitars over a motorik beat. Mason Jennings, in his review, concluded that ďMake no mistake, tolerance for repetition is needed to appreciate this albumÖ Landing may take a number of listens to begin to sink in, but when it does, it stays with you.Ē

1. The xx - xx (Young Turks 2009)
Probably the most hyped young band of the moment, they were also in the same class as our son at school. However I chose it for neither of those reasons. The music is minimal, catchy, fresh, soulful and the fact that they recorded it all themselves in the most basic of studios probably helped it from being over produced. In the last 3 weeks Iíve been walking round with one of their songs on continuous play in my head. (Malka)

2. Tuxedomoon - Desire (Joeboy 1981)
I was living in Amsterdam right at the start of Minimal Compact in 81/82 and this album was my soundtrack. It had a great influence on Minimal. The album has a mysterious quality yet very emotionally evocative. The way the lyrics are personal to the point of near obscurity combined with the unusual mix of instruments and 3 very distinctive voices makes it unique & magical. (Malka)

3. The Beatles - Revolver (Parlophone 1966)
It might be an obvious or unoriginal choice but Iím trying to be honest and put things that have had the strongest impression on me. I was very young when I first discovered the Beatles and they had a profound impact on me. In hindsight I can see that they were the originators of a kind of artistic sophistication that came from individuals creating their own rules. Whatever it was they did in music, they were the first and "Revolver" sees that fully realised for the first time. Iím not sure I would have become a musician / artist were it not for them. (Malka)

4. This Heat - This Heat (Piano Records 1978)
An indispensable release, the future anticipated in the past. Fractured noise, achingly warped guitars, pulsating rhythms, with a blistering energy that sustains to this day. A brilliantly choreographed and influential recording. (Robin)

5. Zoviet France - Untitled/Hessian (Red Rhino Records 1982)
Tribal, earthy, organic music, the darkly obscure sound and image of Zoviet France was hidden within the packaging - here a burlap hessian hand-printed custom silkscreened sleeve holding raw vinyl. Out of focus rhythmic and atmospheric in equal measure. (Robin)

6. Ben Frost - By the Throat (Bedroom Community 2009)
A displaced landscape of an almost apocalyptic nature. Abrasive, beautiful, wild and violent, this is a foreboding dark record that is utterly unforgiving and relentless. Let the wolves attack and devour you. (Robin)

7. Cabaret Voltaire - Kora! Kora! Kora! (Shiva Records 2009)
Essentially a solo expedition by Richard Kirk, this remix album of Kiwi reggae rockers is a dirty factory funk feast. With the final CD artwork by legendary The Designers Republic (RIP), this is a pulsating, euphoric industrial electronic punchbag. Slippery, brutally seductive, and endlessly hypnotic. (Robin)

8. Brian Eno - Here Come the Warm Jets (EG 1974)
Eno bashing is all the rage since the last few years but actually his mid 70ís releases are an amazing blueprint of a kind of making "pop" as if it were "art", yet and this is the key point they are also full of a graceful beauty & sadness quite capable of bringing a tear to the eye. (Colin)

9. The Go! Team - Thunder, Lightning, Strike (Memphis Industries 2005)
There are really no rules about how to make great records and this is a totally great pop album made by a drummer from the most unlikely sources and influences. Like a demented 70ís cop soundtrack with lo-fi cheerleaders and animal from the muppets on drums this album is at once a hip hop highpoint & itís nemesis. (Colin)

10. TV Victor - Timeless Decceleration (Tresor 2000)
An ultimate in a minimal approach to music. Contains only one track, called "Agai", which last 1 hour and 11 minutes during which not a lot happens yet it is a music that totally envelops and soothes. As patterns subtly shift one never gets bored. (Colin)

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