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music review


Everything about this EP’s looks – jewel case with black tray, cheaply photocopied sleeve, even the Impact typeface – reminds me of how all demos were presented in about 2003, but Cashuw is actually a Cardiff University student named Rachel, so presumably too young to remember that era. Here, she crafts post-rockish ambience, slightly akin to Mogwai’s lower key moments, across five sleepy songs – with the added hook of field recordings, sampled on or around aeroplanes and tube trains, then edited. Quietly impressive. NG



Paul Foster, a Lancastrian long resident in Cardiff, has been making atmospheric beat-based electronic music for a quarter-century or more, and releasing it digitally as Dementio13 for some of that. Shamefully, Broxen – his latest 13-track album – is my first encounter with him. It has a few synthpoppy vocal guest spots, including Jo ‘Laurence Made Me Cry’ Whitby, and concludes with a rebuilding of Squarepusher’s anti-Brexit Midi Sans Frontiéres; strongest, for me, are Foster’s takes on snaky Braindance rave like In Patterns and Voices. NG



This Newport duo didn’t do a lot for me when I saw them live a year or so ago, but they emailed a couple of new songs before Christmas and I’m a sight more amenable to them. Was it the attempt to mildly flatter me by implying bands care about being reviewed in this section? Not really! Was it their take on icy, chart-minded 80s synthpop, equal parts Soft Cell and Pet Shop Boys and with bold, precisely enunciated vocals? Indeed it was! NG

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