Posted by Oli Marlow on July 12, 2013


The cult of WANDA seems to be growing stronger. We’ve been harping on about him since he made a mix for us back in November of 2011 (SR Mix #109) but if the turn out at his recent live debut at BleeD (pictured) was anything to go by, it’s pretty obvious that the right people are clocking on to the same type of coursing honesty and abject online personality (which was best personified of late in an extended interview with the Quietus) that Louis Johnstone injects into his music. His recent release on Opal Tapes, PISS FELL OUT LIKE SUNLIGHT, distilled a lot of the multi-personalitied mania of his previous work into something a little bit less testing, less dense and more palatable and it’s on that more, fussed over, restrained keel that his freshly announced, MASCULINITY IS A WONDERFUL THING, continues on.

During his bare bones live show Johnstone giddily swathed layers of tonal noise interspersing them with cackling vocal samples out over the PA and this record, his first for the Where to Now label, is just as minimal – it’s only really halfway through the second side, ‘WE HELD OUR BALANCE’, that he unleashes something a bit more texturally complex with the a heartbeat rhythm and stabbing shards of effected noise – prior to that this piece is pretty much relying on a single drone. The effecting of the sustain is always recognisably him though and over the course of the two pieces he manages to make the listener feel out of place enough for the music to become a comfort in itself.


WANDA GROUP’s MASCULINITY IS A WONDERFUL THING is out on 12″/digital on 5th August via Where To Now.