Category Archives: optimo

Memories of the Space Age

In our world populated with sci-fi allagories — dark hulking things, scrapping their battered metal bulk over the purple plains of twin sunned planets — we sometimes cannot help but retreat to the warm caverns of the discothèque.  A place of nebulous identity, a relativistic space of individualists and solidarity.  It is dark in there for a reason.

A Ballardian conflagration of the hi-tech and sexual; the sounds of electronic music so intractably bound in the aural flourishes of lasers and deep space.  Booming like stars and metallic.  Vast and often beautifully empty.  The forces shaping those sounds, not immediately those of craft and intricacy, but something more elemental, more eternal.

Factory Floor‘s entry into this space seems drenched in the entrails of Industrial Records.  A dry black birth into a space that plays so effortlessly with brutal dehumanisation and finds beauty every, single, time. The throbbing pulse to ~ (R E A L L O V E), ritualistic and mind-controlling;  relentless and comforting.  A heartbeat to an impossibly vast machine.  Optimo (in the form of Twitch and Dave Clarke) turn the speeding pulse from a hurtling descend into a controlled glide the makes expert use of the electro-thermal currants drifting up from the haciendas below.  Nik Colk’s vocal paces between the beats and beams, delivering her lines from every corner, sometimes barely heard, sometimes brushing just by your ear.  The juggernaut of early electro noise barely contained as if caught by intractable tides, constantly ready to overwhelm and gorgeously relentless.

Factory Floor – ~(R E A L L O V E) (Optimo Remix)

~(R E A L L O V E) (Optimo Remix) is taken from the forthcoming Optimo Music 12″ out on April 6th.

Design A Wave take another route.  Far from descending from a cloud-black sky they emerge from an ice-flow; glacial, blue and pristine.  Magicar is a neon-lit Fortress of Solitude, a dance party for geological processes: glacial disco.

Magicar is taken from the Snake Jam tape out soon on (our good friends) Sex is Disgusting Records.  the tape itself is made up of tracks culled from a four year period (2005-2009) but manages to slip right in to these days of synth-wave obsession.  This takes us back to a time when Glass Candy and Chromatics filled these dark pages with ethereal delights and for that, we are grateful.

Design a Wave – Magicar

Too fast for love

Tracks picked by Optimo to appear on their singles club Oscarr have to be pretty special and Findo GaskVa Va Va is no exception.

findo gask

Immediately striking a disorientating interplay of unrelated no-wave funk guitars, your first impression from today’s indie is whether this is going to turn into Orange Juice or Foals, but all too quickly your left with as equally an odd outcome of a verse melody not unfamiliar to early Brian Eno fans – a theme continued throughout Va Va Va, but not as you have heard it before.

Findo Gask – Va Va Va

The chorus is in far too quick for us normally drawn out subtle types at xxjfg – and where are we? I’m feeling a tartan scarf waving in the air, episodes of Top of the Pops Two and the presence of the lovely Leslie McKeown! Only problem is instead of throwing my knickers on the stage, I seem to be gazing at my shoe, and the guitars suddenly make sense.

The base line as naively glam funk as early Japan ties it all together as a decidedly dance floor track and by the time the second chorus ends we are into Caribou and more obviously M83’s atmospheric epic production high territory – but then it ends!

So what are we trying to say here? Findo Gask – if your reading – it’s all too much for one tiny 3min blatantly pop dity. Please! Can we have a 12 if not 24min version? Our tiny minds have collapsed in chasm of pop that we like, wanting more.

Gain ten bonus points and progress to the next level if you spot the connection between Findo Gask and Kill The DJ Andrew Weatherall favored artist Battant.


This new wave hit that never was imbibes too much spirit of early Le Tigre, and ends up half cut rolling round in the ally ways with the underage tales of The Undertones.

Although originally introduced to us through the previously mentioned Andrew Weatherall rock n’ roll minimalism dub it is the original we are blogging. As a killer line, “he fucked the egg’s out her, that stupid cock tease whore” this seems an odd subject of a song – but what do you expect to find if you’re French Chloé scencester, rummaging through your new flatmate’s diary? Is it more akin to finding your living with Travis Bickle crossed with Bernard Manning dressed as Nathan Barley?

Battant – Kevin

For it’s sheer unbridled beat punk poetry enthusiasm, naive guitar solo, and unpretentious joy, no matter the subject matter, Kevin is a good bounce and we expect to see you dancing around your bedroom like there is no school tomorrow right about now kids.

Just for the record – flat mate was not this Kevin, who obviously rules, as does Simon – who also posted Kevin – must be a good one then!