Album Review: Lumina - The Rogue Element

Coming from the same school of thought as Simian Mobile Disco and Justice but without the pop hooks, Lumina is the aka Ben Medcalf's second album as Rogue Element and having had a listen it is difficult to understand why he isn't better known.

Lumina for the most delivers a noisy, bombastic, swinging-from-the-chandaliers style party and from the opening title track it sounds like the sound Simian Mobile Disco are aiming for with their second album. There a vicious stabs of acid and swirling synthesizers in a combination that defies easy categorisation. All BlackPlastic can say is that it has elements of techno and even trance but that it's still definitely house music.

Regardless of how you label it, this is music to lose memories to. 'Binary Suite', 'Sidewinder' and 'Lumina' are all full on brilliant technicolor brain-seizures. And when Lumina isn't swinging from the chandeliers things get even better - the broken beats of 'In Place' build to a distorted climax whilst 'Mistakes', the only track with a proper vocal, is the album's highlight. It's slower than the rest of the album but builds and builds into a magnificent electro-ballad, all snappy beats and distorted melodies.

Lumina is a triumphant record - an album that manages to be accessible without any danger of selling out. The golden boys of dance music just got some competition: The Rogue Element.

Lumina is released on 29 June on Exceptional.  Available to pre-order from Amazon.co.uk [affiliate link].

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News: A couple of cool remix competitions

Okay - two remix contests for the price. Admittedly that's, erm, free... but you get the point. BlackPlastic thought it made sense to double up.

First up is Ernesto's forthcoming single, 'Bassline', due for release on 29 June on Exceptional Records. Hailing from Sweden Ernesto makes soulful electro - imagine the clean considered music of Junior Boys but with added funk or just check it out in the player below:


Ernesto - Bassline (out June 29th) by exceptionalrecords


You can download the zip file containing the tracks components here and the winner, chosen by Ernesto, will receive an Exceptional Records goody bag including a signed copy of the single plus their track will be streamable from the Exceptional website with a link back to your own site. To enter the competition email your entry to [competition closed] as a low res MP3 by 6 July with the subject line ‘Ernesto Remix comp’. Include your name, contact number and website address if you have one.

The next competition is in celebration of Tim Sheridan and his notorious veryverywrongindeed night coming to Fabric's sister club Matter on Saturday 27 June.  It's set to be an interesting night and Tim will be joined by Spektre and Jesper Dahlback on the decks.  Most of the tracks Tim plays are from his VVWI record label, picked up from wherever he finds them on his travels and his determination to avoid the majors is evident in this competition, where he is inviting budding bedroom producers to remix the forthcoming single 'Villain'.

The winners will get invited along as VIPs to the night at Matter and Tim will play the track out on the night.  Head over to the VVWI website for details.  The closing date is 25 June.