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Pleasures That Kill

by Female

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about

a key component of the 1990s birmingham techno sound, and co-founder of the downwards label, female's music is as important for everything it doesn't tell you as it is for the pummeling rhythms it forces you to engage with. one of the few remaining examples of an artist with a palpable sense of mystique, female conjures a world that evokes film noir, or even something out of a Burroughs story. the language of this music will be familiar to those who listen to "dance music", but the bare building blocks are often all we get. development within these tracks is subtle, and it's the sense that something is being held back that gives the music its power. the forceful minimalism of these tracks creates a narrative that, when combined with their titles and the visual imagery of the sleeves, is at once immediate and yet feels almost impenetrable. this tension is what makes the music so invigorating. It's as if we're hearing blocks of sound carved out from larger monoliths that have no beginning or end. This music is an aural equivalent to an act of voyeurism, or the fear of seeing something horrific we shouldn't have seen. brutal and repetitive, it recalls a distant time and place, yet somehow escapes the confines of linear time and sounds fresh today.

this comprehensive box set places female in the same spotlight as luminary figures regis and surgeon. these sides are no less important and their simplicity is deceptive. female, with all its bleak and yet forward-thrusting energy, is crucial to understanding how downwards, as a precursor to sandwell district, created a larger-than-life legend. carefully transferred from the original vinyl records with audiophile needles for the best stereo cuts, the audio was then meticulously cleaned and de-clicked. justin broadrick, a contemporary of the early downwards crew with a pristine ear, was then brought in to remaster everything, resulting in a true to the original vibe but larger than life textural result. In addition to including nearly every solo Female track and record released on downwards and sandwell district, the fifth disc presents a never-before released live collaboration with regis from 2000.

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released October 2, 2020

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Hospital Productions New York, New York

A Small Sado-Masochistic Family

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