Given the quality of Session Victim's 2012 debut album, Haunted House of House, expectations are naturally high for this follow-up. Like its predecessor, See You When You Get There takes a widescreen approach to deep house, with the German duo drawing on a myriad of influences, from jazz ("Hey Stranger"), soundtracks ("Crystal Maze") and evocative downtempo beats (the impeccable title track), to Atmosfear-ish jazz-funk ("The Most Beautiful Divorce In The World") and, most notably, classic Balearica (see the druggy pop of "Hyuwee" and deliciously slow "EOS Place". Best of all, though, is "Never Forget", a glorious blues-house epic laden with smoky vocal samples and thrilling piano motifs.
Having built up his reputation via a series of well-regarded re-edit releases, Australian producer Greg Packer has recently impressed with EPs of original music on Hotbox Boogie and Hot Digits. Here he returns to the latter with the expansive Diagnosis: Disco, a collection of tracks that expertly joins the dots between warm disco and slinky deep house. Highlights are plentiful, from the baggy, filter-heavy '80s soul shuffle of "Enuff Love" and the spiralling, near Balearic rush of "Hypnotizing", to the energetic throb of the gloriously synth-laden "Keep Doin' What You're Doin". Label boss Fingerman has a pop at remixing lead cut "Trip To The Galaxy", layering Packer's warm original elements with twinkling pianos, delay-laden vocal snippets and immersive deep house chords.
Solid Fool is one of those pesky "mystery artists" that are so prevalent these days - a well-regarded Austrian producer who wishes to remain nameless. Here Comes The Sun marks his debut for Yam Who's Midnight Riot imprint. His style neatly sidesteps easy categorization, utilising classic (and obscure) disco, funk, soul and electrofunk samples alongside nu-disco synths and weighty deep house grooves. It's a formula that guarantees fun-times and funk aplenty. Opener "Here Comes The Sun" is particularly good - a bumpy, thrill-a-minute fusion of P-funk bottom end, shimmering synths and vocals lifted from a classic cover of the well-known Beatles record. Elsewhere, "Lone Gone" is a delicious, toe-tapping head-nodder that adds a reggae swing to a killer disco groove, while the epic "Lovechild" is a 12-minute exercise in slowly building disco release.
The scarily prolific KS French - France's most productive maker of house-friendly disco re-edits - returns with the third instalment of his ongoing Super Groove series. As usual, there's plenty to tickle the fancy of those looking for tried-and-tested, club-friendly interpretations of classic and little-known cuts. "B Rappin" does an impressive job of tweaking Blondie's "Rapture" - working the groove hard and abandoning most of the vocals - while the standout "See My Baby" offers an addictive interpretation of a familiar, low-slung disco-funk groover. Elsewhere, check the celebratory horns, hustling groove and thrilling vocals of "My Music". While KS French has added his usual metronomic house beats, it's deftly done.
Originally featured as a straight up, Loose Ends-style cover of Dennis Edwards/Siedah Garrett's 1984 glistening tropical soul hit, here we get some killer new mixes of "Don't Look Any Further". First up, Hot Toddy delivers some infectious, late night trippy disco-funk (even more spacey in its dub form). Peter O, meanwhile, produces a beguiling slice of warped, palm tree synth-pop and I Said No serve up some eccentric soul-pop vibes.
We're not sure where DJ Butcher keeps finding these rare and juicy joints to carve up for his Chopshop, but find them he does! His latest missive is "We Feeling Good" and totally upbeat beat slice of late '70s block rockin' disco-rap from the era of Sugarhill Records. Instrumentals and acapella versions are also supplied for maximum fun.
Doctor Music recently released his Party Has Just Begun album on Timewarp, but this restless disco soul has already returned to his Katakana Edits series, releasing this, the 20th installment! "The Real Thing" is a slice of feelgood quality disco with an amazing, totally liquid bassline and golden honeyed (largely) female vocals. Looks like we'll be playing this one for months!
Having recently impressed with the superb "Flash" on Craig Bratley's admirable Magic Feet label, Rich Lane returns to his Cotton Bud imprint with "New Best Friend", a bubbling chunk of new beat-inspired nu-disco. The original version laces a wonky, pitched-down spoken word vocal over sharp synths, bubbly electronics and a bassline that's reminiscent of some of Chicken Lips' classic productions on Kingsize. It's a kind of hymn to the joys of dancing with strangers, which is no bad thing. There's an alternative Instrumental included, too, which sounds even more like Chicken Lips jamming with the Confettis in Ghent, circa 1989.
Historically Samurais were a pretty tough bunch - really tough - so you shouldn't name your record after them unless you're pretty hard. Thankfully Swifft Edits bring the muscle here, with four nuggets, all solid enough to crack a tooth on. Seemingly all sourced in Japan, P&C's "Superstar" is lilting Euro-disco of the melancholy kind, Minachan's "Light It Up" is flute-laden Loveboat funk, whilst Akko's "Doshaburi" is all about the breaky organ-led '60s grooves and Tabo's "4am" is a vocally layered sojourn through rainy late night Tokyo backstreets.
For his latest release, Lord Funk shifts his amorous intentions from his hometown Paris towards the slightly less glamourous London. Judging by the soft focus affection all over these retro funk tracks he's definitely smitten with the capital, but the sound is firmly rooted in early '80s America. Highlights include the stark electro-disco of "It Turn Me On", the shimmering silk sheet digi-funk workout "Piccadilly Circus" and The Odyssey-esque dry-ice grind of "London Town".
It's been a good four months since the last EP from formidable disco/funk/soul twosome Ed Wizard and Disco Double Dee. Here they return to the Editorial label (their usual home) with five more chunks of party-starting scalpel action. Naturally, there's plenty to get the juices flowing, from the rubbery bass, rolling grooves and undulating strings of "Boogie Box", and the whistle-laden disco-funk heaviness of "Groove Catcher", to the unfettered, looped-up sweetness of "Givin' Ya Up". Best of all, though, is the party-in-an-MP3 release of opener "Up 2 Get Down", a horn-totin' slab of disco-funk that hits all the right notes.
Germany's Soultronic has always delivered unique, smooth-but-raw productions and the Soul On Fire EP is no different. Over three expertly tweaked edits we get the '80s digi-soul referencing dream-beat of "I Want You", the French touch thump of the joyous "Soul On Fire" and the disco mayhem of "I Learned The Hard Way".
Given that this is Audaz's 50th release (good going, given that the imprint was only launched in 2011), it seems fitting that it comes from label boss Lino Rodriguez, AKA Alkalino. The Munich-based producer has predictably gone in hard, delivering a quartet of original tracks aimed squarely at late night dancefloors. Opener "Side It Up" seemingly surges from the speakers, with flittering tech-house elements and murky vocal samples riding a wonky, bass-heavy groove. "Drumberg" sees him charge off into tech-acid territory with impressive results, while "Sparkling" sounds like vintage Orbital fused with 21st century German tech-house. Finally, he reaches for the mutant bass, horror textures and acid lines on closer "Minga", arguably the EP's standout moment.
For the second instalment of the occasional Optimo Music Disco Plate series, JD Twitch has decided to reissue two classic cuts (both initially released in 1996) from Reel Houze - a hook-up between DJ D and Rob Mello. Opener "The Chance (DJ D Dub Plate Mix)" is something of an overlooked, hard-to-find classic - a wild, unwieldy, delay-laden dub-disco romp based around a cheeky sample from Dinosaur's "Go Bang" and "toilet seat percussion" from DJ Harvey. Flip for the similarly epic "No Difference (Real Houze Dub)", which has a looser and deeper feel. Despite the trippy vibe, it's every bit as potent as its predecessor, with military drum rolls, heady vocal samples and jaunty clavinets drifting in and out of the duo's delay-laden mix.
Social Assassin first appeared nearly a year ago as a B-side on a single by this Argentine producer, and now it's back in remixed form (actually in six remixed forms to be precise). There's a variety of approaches taken here, our faves being Mijo aka La Royal's pulsating Italo disco version, Fernando's depressed Moroder take and Did Virgo's super slow body music grinder. Great tune, great to have it back!
Given the soul-soaked and generally far-sighted nature of techno veteran Fabrice Lig's music, it's unsurprising to see him popping up on Carl Craig's esteemed Planet E label. Galactic Soul Odyssey more than lives up to its title, too, largely eschewing dancefloor techno rhythms in favour of tracks that bristle with the positivity of P-funk, boogie, broken beat and high class synth-pop (think rubbery slap bass, kaleidoscopic synths, '80s soul vocals and bouncy rhythms). It's a deliciously positive set, all told, with just the right balance between studied retro-futurism and effortlessly melodious atmosphere. Certainly, it's something of a triumph - an accessible romp with enough musical depth to please even the choosiest of heads.
The productive Milos Djordevic once again dons the Tonbe alias for his seventh EP of 2014. Like many of his singles, the Forgotten EP sees the Serb join the dots between disco, house, soul and boogie with the assistance of some killer samples and more than one eye on the dancefloor. The real killer here is "Without Action", a swinging, bumpin' house jam that makes great use of a driving but rubbery boogie bassline and crunchy funk guitars. There's more of a classic disco feel to the sweltering grooves, compressed bass, deep house chords and clipped guitars of "After Vision", while "Expectation" layers deliciously tactile P-funk synths over a dreamy, evocative deep house groove.
Antoni Maiovvi joins the Crimes Of The Future family in a perfect match of Italo horror running out of the disco, leaving behind the gentle thud of dark techno in a dark Roman Alleyway. Junior Fairplay's inauguaral remix takes us out of the darkness to a happy ending in sunnier climes on a beach somehere in Portofino.
Shamelessly funky edits from two Dutch disco dynamos SHMLSS. They've already given us plenty to jump to via Midnight Riot and Disco Deviance. We're likely to hear a lot more of them in the future, but right now it's all about this epic double up on Manchester's To Rack & Ruin imprint. "Disco Sensation" is a heady slap bass jam session with an array of tight chops and disco flurries on the fills. Meanwhile we're treated to an epic rendition of Peter Jacques Band's "Counting On Love" where every string and piano rolls are polished and presented with dramatic glee. Bona fide disco vibes.
Dollkraut, AKA Dutch producer Pascal Pinkert, has a thing for defying categorization. Over the years, he has variously explored analogue disco, krautrock, Italo, nu-jazz, beatbox electro and deep house. This long overdue debut album continues this trend, throwing a whole new range of influences into the melting pot - African rhythms, post-punk, soundtrack schtick, Gainsbourg-ish sleaze, and lo-fi rock - alongside his usual touchstones. By rights, the resultant set should be a mess, but actually it's a rather fine LP - a product, perhaps, of his constant passion for analogue equipment and the attractive dustiness of his productions. It might take a few listens to sink in, but Schimanski Black Lullabies is an impressive debut.