It's time to raise a glass of something cold, fizzy and boozy to the long-running G.A.M.M imprint, which celebrates a century of releases with a trio of new disco-era Michael Jackson reworks from regular contributors Moplen and The Reflex. As usual, The Reflex hits the spot, playing around with the original parts to deliver a punchy, floor-friendly extension of Off The Wall cut "Burn This Disco Out" that sounds like some mythical, long lost Tom Moulton remix. Moplen weighs in with two versions of Jacksons' banger "Shake Your Body (Down To The Ground)"; a DJ-friendly effort that begins with easily mixable grooves, and a superior, mostly instrumental 'Remix' that builds up masterfully via a sumptuous, orchestral intro.
Loved and respected by those in the know as one of the finest purveyors of silky-smooth soulful drum and bass with the delicate touch of a producer who knows how to kick it hard too, Lenzman now has the privileged position of being given his very own remix release. Featuring showstopping amendments by Ivy Lab, LSB and DBridge amongst others, this is no normal remix EP. It's a combination of legends
Fresh Calibre - is there a finer thing? And in this disappointing summer of damp barbeques and dead beer gardens, there's nothing we all needed more right now than this, a quadruple helping of thick-bassed freakiness. Kicking off with "Bogeyman Bullshit" for some deep bass wobbling, "Smother" gathers the techy nuances of Marcus Intalex and Bricktop and "Multi-Tasking" bangs and whomps its way through hard stepping kicks and rolling snares. Final tune "Dream Of You" brings in vintage dub heaviness alongside retro synths for a seriously deep slice of originality. Serious banger!
Hampshire-based Groove Motion - AKA DJ/production duo Wayne Altham and Jack Henwood - describe their style as "bangin' soulful music". Certainly, there's plenty of soul to be found throughout this debut release for Midnight Riot. Throughout, they impeccably blur the boundaries between re-edits, remixes and original productions, delivering new takes on classic tracks with plenty of cool musical flourishes. Check, for example, the deliciously evocative piano solos on their breezy house version of The Jones Girls' "Nights Over Egypt" (here renamed "To The Music"), or the sparkling guitars and tactile chords of Sade re-cut "Nothing Can". There's also a cheery, sun-flecked goodness to "So Good To Me", their house-friendly version of Donald Byrd's Paradise Garage classic "Love Has Come Around".
Time for a remix tip from Navigator as "Sound The Alarm" gets a working from some Liondub heavyweights. From the monster hench Serum remix to Lost City's dancehall wind and grind, and Brian Brainstorm's frisky, jump up interpretation, it's fair to say there's more than one way to bake a Navigator classic. Heavy ragga vibes with a focus on those battle cry vocals in Sticky Joe's remix is definitely one to look out for. Heavy.
The UK's Pelikann glides mightily high on the nu-dubstep waves these days, and he's landed firmly on the Saucy clan's catalogue with a fluttering blend of percussion-driven squelchers. "Wolf" is a sludgy, four-to-the-floor monster with plenty of wobbles and grizzly low-ends, and backed by Hywel's more stripped-back version. "Hear Me" is, of course, dark and menacing, and filled with horsepower, but the groove is leaner than its predecessor, leaving the club slashings up to the remixer, Distro. The aptly named "Fak Off" ties things off with deep bursts of power drums and bass stabs, followed by Grande's housier version of the original. Mean.
Anile's exclusive signing to Med School remains a very big deal. Allowing his sound to continue growing under the nurturing alt-drum and bass wings of Hospital Records' nerdy, slightly emotional sister label, you could argue there's never been a better place for him. With his intellectual beats come deep rhythms and thundering bass, taking inspiration not just from his ambient-influenced peers but from the heavier, dubbier junglists of the past. A momentous release from an artist who's only just stepping into his prime.
A host of collabs take pride of place in this fresh-feeling, summer-tinted release kicking off with Pennygiles and criminally underrated producer Sevin, working together on "I'm Sorry". All rolling bass, soulful vocals and swelling sampled strings. Lovely stuff. Next up Phil Tangent join Penny-g for a dark stepper with a difference, as strangely beguiling vocals move in from the distance over dark bass and contrasting brightness from the synths. It'd be spooky if it wasn't so good. Finally, the one and only tech-master Ed:it comes to see Pennygiles for "Know A Lie", mixing that trademark rolling style effortlessly with his own savage nature. Beautifully done.
Aggression and future sounds come from the man like DJ Chap, pushing forward his reign of terror with a hard-hitting collection of bass heavy hellraisers. Don't expect to be overwhelmed by synth and FX though; there's a distinctly minimal sound to tracks like "Emperor" and "Stressed", owing most of their ominous sound the spaces in-between. For the beastly rave-happy sounds you're used to, head to "Homeless Roots Sounds" for extra dubby bass and tight rolling snares.
2015 is fast turning into Henry Wu's year. Having already delivered killer release of baked deep house/instrumental hip-hop fusion for Ho-Tep and Odd Socks, he now pops up on Rhythm Section International with another brilliant EP. While as deep and blazed as previous excursions, there's a sun-bright freshness to the pleasingly varied selections on offer. Contrast, for example, the deep space, boogie-house slickness of "Yellow Brick", the bruk revivalism of "Neezy (Wok)" - think I.G Culture after a few too many bongs) - and the brilliant deep house/jazz-funk fusion of "Dubplate Special". Arguably best of all, though, is the Latin jazz-goes-deep house warmth of "Croydon Depot". Everyone will have a different personal favourite, though; it's that kind of EP.
Ever since his release on Goldie's larger-than-life Metalheadz stable, Jim Coles aka OM Unit has truly impressed us with his singular spin on minimal drum and bass. His latest tunes comes courtesy of Cosmic Bridge, a label he's already released plenty of music on, and the five tunes are representative of his many skills and guises behind the mixing desk. From the bumpy, off-gilter breaks of "Wagonist Riddim", to the faster and meaner swagger of "Spiritwerk", or the downtempo beat coils of "Demons Out", Coles' soundsare both cinematic and effective on the speakers. Metalheadz legend Digital features on "Midnight Oil", a half-step, neo-jungle banger for the headZ.
Straight up liquid drum and bass on offer here from Fresh Kutt , Essex's finest with some seriously in your face remixes by Serum and Bryan V. First up is "Feel" with its fluid and funky production channeling the vibes of old school Calibre or Bristol don DJ Die - This track was championed by Friction on his BBC radio show by the way. Next up is "So Damn Tuff" which lives up to its name, a collaboration with Bryan V which takes on more of a jump style of with its funky and catchy bassline that would make legends like Mickey Finn take notice.
Italian upstart Kiu D serves up a three course banquet of high cholesterol edits. For starters we're presented with a heart-attack inducing deep fried platter of greasy synths as Rocker's Revenge's "Walking On Sunshine" gets the full fat treatment. For mains we're served "Disco Brains"; the audio equivalent of a 20oz steak, it has the juiciest, rarest boogie bassline this side of Manhattan. For dessert we're treated to the sweetest of treats as the smooth-yet-unrelenting "Calm Before The Storm" ebbs and flows softly thanks to lavish piano strokes and a peppering of syrupy jazz elements. What a feast. What a debut release.
15 months on from the release of their superb Body of One full length, Faze Action brothers Robin and Simon Lee have decided to get the album remixed. They start the ball rolling by delivering an '89 style Balearic house dub of "Magic Touch" - all "Good Life" riffs, chopped-up, cowbell-laden percussion and expansive piano solos - before Dicky Trisco weighs in with a more synthesizer-heavy, boogie-inspired re-dub of the same track. Phil Mison reinvents "Echoes of Your Mind" as a drifting Balearic chugger, complete with his own additional guitar, bass and keys, before Emotional emperor Stuart "Chuggy" Leath does his best Dunkelziffer impression via a woozy, fluid and wide-eyed take on "Floating World".
Editorial Records have been delivering top selling 'slo-mo disco and deep grooves...from around the globe' since 2009. Here they keep the heat on with a new summer-friendly compilation, Golden Grooves. There are 15 choice cuts here, all of which employ a formula of providing a mellow house frame on which to hang some filtered vintage samples. Highlights include the serpentine bassline of Matt Hughes' cocktail-houser "Rodeo Warrior", the Minnie Ripperton-with-a-backbeat haze of "The Spirit" by The Groovers and the spacey hiNRG disco of "Body Heat".
"Ambience" from the creatively restless Mele surfaces courtesy of yet another new home, Lobster Boy. The reluctance to be held down to one style is also pleasingly present too, with Mele delivering two new bass bombs, with the title track's carnival-esque fusion of deep tribal beats, diva vocals and absurd breakdown, as well as the quirky, helium laser attack of "UFOZ". Typical Mele - always ahead of the pack.
Plenty of soul-searching in this pair of deep rollers from Soul Deep favourite Furney. Fresh sounding and filled with emotive keys, "Rhodeo Drive" itself is a gorgeous piece of soulful drum and bass, with plenty of nods to the old school. "Low-Co" is the bad boy of the pair, ditching shimmering atmospherics for a loose and dirty kick drum and eerie vocal histrionics. Cinematic and imaginative, there's a lot here to take your breath away.
Your eyes aren't deceiving you - we have here the first sampler from Break's forthcoming Simpler Times LP and you can get it right now. Seriously. You could have the swingy, sultry vocals and unmistakably Break-esque wubblin' bass of "Simpler Times" in time for the weekend. Can't say fairer than that. Also included is the sharp and tasty "Top Shooter" which is a masterpiece in filthy riddims and is already getting loud and direct airings on dancefloors across this fair nation. Get involved before the world knows.
"ShoNuf" begins strong with a tactical assault of vintage style breaks and a whole load of thick, dubby bass. "Warning" follows up with the vast emptiness of an industrial roller, the US producer showing how minimal fuss can create the heaviest of sounds. "Ruff N Tuff" packs deep bass with the top-end rattle of rapid fire snares, while Jaybee's elastic bass pulls tight and digs deep in "Don't Even Try It".
The Hybrid Minds crew are fast approaching the very top of their game, pulling out all the stops to create some of the highest-quality liquid rollers going. Teaming up with the unmistakeable lyrical panache of Riya for "Kismet", the first track here is a total beauty. "That Way" continues down a perfectly Spearhead path of warm bass and shimmering strings. "Lifted" features new voice Matt Banks whose light-touch on the vocals lifts darker bass and final track "Our Turn" takes another artist on board in Charlie P, moving on with more cinematic vibes for a widescreen feel. It just got emotional in here.