Today is the release day for the new album Rhizome by Ubre Blanca, a Glasgow-based “dark electronic disco” group that are good friends and collaborators. This is their first full length album in a while, released on the Vienna-based label Archaic Future Sounds, and I was invited to collaborate on the second track of the album entitled “Nocturne I” adding in synths and other sounds in what turned out to be a great result.
You can listen to this track in the video below, or check out the Spotify embed of the album further down. The eye-catching psychedelic artwork by French illustrator Gabriel Picard (Liorzh).
From Ancient Greek rhízōma ‘mass of roots’, ‘Horizontal underground plant stem capable of producing the shoot and root systems of a new plant. Rhizomes are used to store starches and proteins and enable plants to survive an unfavourable season underground.’ – Encyclopedia Britannica
After years of exploring fictional dystopian futures in sound Ubre Blanca, like everyone else, found themselves living through a real life dystopian nightmare during the COVID pandemic. The ensuing chaos and forced hiatus from playing live changed their way of working and the direction of the new music.
Drawing on old and new influences ranging from the pioneers of ’70s synth music to the contemporary wave of Dark Disco and Neo-Italo via ’90s rave, House and Trance, the resulting album, ‘Rhizome’ is an unabashed celebration of being back on the dance floor and a way of reaching out and reconnecting with other artists and DJs around the world.
From ‘Narcopolis’, a tribute to old-school House with an Italo twist and ‘Pacific Palisades’ recalling the band’s ‘Terminal Island’ EP and ’80s FM euphoria to the three part ‘Nocturne’ suite, which evolves from the band’s long-time John Carpenter influenced sound through a space rock slide guitar solo into Synthwave territory, this album sees Ubre Blanca exploring the roots of the band’s sound and influences and branching out in new directions. Released digital and on tape on young Archaic Future Sounds.