Reviewed this week
Prins Thomas's pleasingly varied production career takes another twist here. Having variously helped to define the Scandolearic disco sound, paid tribute to wonky krautrock workouts and recorded some of the best ambient music of the last few years, the Oslo producer has decided to take a different path on "Edmond". An epic split into two parts, "Edmond" combines dense, Sotofett/Bjorj Torske style hand percussion work, electrofunk influenced synths and the producer's usual picturesque melodies to predictably brilliant effect. There's more percussive fun to be had on the wonky, bass-heavy and trippy flipside "Montague Grant", which smothers layered tribal percussion in trippy acid lines, delay-laden synth doodles and deep space chord sequences.



Purloined from the funkiest cavities of their last album Free From Your Spell, Midnight Magic's loose-grooved post disco fusion enjoys a new collection of re-visions and versions. George Clinton-approved FSQ add a little more drive in the drum department and swooning focus on the harmonies, Nark strips back the layers and polishes with a generous dose of acid while long-time Soul Clapper Michael The Lion rebuilds the elements into a roaring piece of piano-hammering gospel house feelgoodness. Feel the love!
A chilled Brazilian-tinged boogie cut from the recent Joey Negro epic entitled Produced With Love gets transformed into a piano fuelled, peaktime banger by Swedish jazz musician/producer Crackazat. He retains the Latino flavour of the original but 'adds bags of dance floor energy.' Dave Lee has been one of the most prolific producers in dance music over the last three decades and we would highly recommend the album to anyone who considers themselves a fan of proper house, disco or soul music. It features collaborations with such legends as Diane Charlemagne, Linda Clifford and Alex Mills. In addition to remixes of recent heroes of the scene such as Horse Meat Disco and Peven Everett.
Originally started in Mexico, Fran Deeper now runs the Spa In Disco imprint out of Mallorca in Spain. Over the last few years has brought us some killer jams by the likes of Rayko, Super Agente 86, Jose Hdez and David Manso to name but a few. It is now over to Italian guy in Bristol Kiu D with the Small Steps EP. Beginning with the deeply percussive nu-disco joint that is the title track, "Smoke" gets all sexy and housey on us in a very late night fashion. "Wiper & True" gets some Kaidi Tatham style nu-jazz soul vibes into the mix: that Herbie Hancock style synth bass really doing the business. Finally, there's a remix by the formerly Dubai based Brit Andy Buchan with an irresistible nu-disco makeover of "Small Steps".
Hot Digits enjoyed Kellini's last EP so much that they asked him to come back and this time he's brought fellow Norwegian Saskin S: who follows his The Game EP from last year. The two bring some serious heat with this bunch of energetic nu-disco cuts. Starting off with the neon-lit boogie of "Break A Leg" followed by the low slung groove of "In Doubt" which really takes things deep. It comes alongside remixes from rising Irish producer Stephen Richards, whose rendition of "In Doubt" gets some groovy summertime vibes happening (to get any decent Disco Stu in the mood) while Chewy Rubs' From The Deep dub of "Resaca" takes things down a darker and headier route: which would be perfect for late night mood lighting on the dancefloor.



Since launching a couple of years back, Moscoman's previously vinyl-only Disco Halal imprint has led the way in fusing the sounds of the Middle East with contemporary electronic music culture. For proof, check Halal Collection, the label's first digital release. It offers an 11-track trawl through the best of the label's output to date, with a previously unreleased Red Axes remix of Autarkic's "How To Cheat" - think bubbling drum machine beats and lilting, cascading synthesizer melodies - thrown in. Highlights include a chunk of spooky, Arabic house hypnotism from Naduve, the skewed late night funk of TCP's "Twonga", the intoxicating, anthem-like throb of Simple Symmetry's "Voodoo Your Ex" and the thrillingly percussive disco-funk/acid house fusion of Red Axes, Moscoman and Krikor's "Subaru Pesha".
Following an extended hiatus, Daco returns to Paper Recordings with an EP stuffed full of high-grade dancefloor moments. Opener "The Uprise" is particularly potent, featuring as it does a killer combination of "I Feel Love" style arpeggio bass, Kraftwerkian computer vocals, driving beats, spacey chords and some superbly manipulated spoken word samples ("the money, the drugs, the oil, the guns, the war, the uprising!"). It's followed by a proto-house and Italo-disco influenced alternative version that is arguably even closer in tone to vintage Giorgio Moroder, while bonus cut "Faith" is a deep, woozy and dreamy chunk of Balearic house laden with melancholic strings and a superb vocal by Mikey Raphael.
Another gold asset from the ever-developing Moonrise Hill collective, Saint Paul emerges from the shadows with his first full EP for the label. Every track is a stone cold soulful house gem. Jacking, rough around the edges but soaked in serious sentiment and human realness, every cut touches the heart. Highlights include the O'Neal style vocal touches on "Heat Is A Melody", the Balearic waves and sandy-toed surges of "Frenetic Dance Under The Moonlight" and the stripped back sample fire of "Boogie Or Not Boogie".
Four months into his new Re-Loved label revelations, longstanding disco doyen Haji returns with five more deeply-dug, craftily carved oddities guaranteed to please the most eclectic and left-handed of selectors. Afrobeat charm hits hard from the vibrant "Hold Tight" while "Babies Come From Ladies" riffs of a fun source with serious off-beat freakery. "One Kocky Edit" takes us deep into 80s cinematica while "Take A Holiday" brings us back down to earth with soulful style. Feel the love.
Moonrise Hill Material has an interesting mission statement. The French label says that it is dedicated to "poetic house music", a deliciously open-ended concept that's open to all sorts of interpretations. In the case of this EP - a multi-artist affair featuring label regulars and newcomers - that largely means chunky club tracks that doff a cap to classic disco and boogie. There are deviations from the blueprint, of course - see the dub-flecked tropical house slinkiness of Tochigi Canopy's "Gulf Ressac", or the Andres-ish loop jazziness of LB aka Labat's "Your Ass Gotta Go" - but it's likely most DJs will reach for the celebratory positivity of Etheyne and Folamour's party-starting A-side cuts.
International Feel's mini album series seems to explore the space between world beat, balearic and library music. Here, L.A's Pharaohs 'have imagined a place far from the city' on their first release for Mark Barrott's esteemed imprint. Co-founder Sam Cooper has stated that we were influenced by a surfing book by photographer Michael Kew and that a lot of the music was inspired by his travels in the South Pacific and its imagery: an idea of what it would sound like if they were actually there themselves. Cooper met co-founder Ale Cohen in Amoeba Music and the pair started jamming in the late noughties. Diego Herrera (aka Suzanne Kraft) was an original member but now resides in Europe, preventing him from collaborating, moving forward. But still, some of his playing can be heard on the album. Casey Butler aka Stellar Rahim, is the fourth member, who studied composition at CalArts.
Quartet Series is back with the Bodybuilder Series after Scott Franka inaugurated the series in Spring. Here label boss Nachtbraker sourced some serious production talent from Eindhoven, The Netherlands. It's the Portamento Boys' first ever release, characterized by catchy melodies, quirky vibes and warm analogue grooves. First offering "Been There Come Back" is a neon-lit/ nu-disco journey to the stars that will appeal to fans of Smalltown Supersound. "Portamento 101" is described best by the label themselves. It "feels like you're playing the 1986 version of Outrun on your Sega." Finally, the slow burning groove of fittingly titled "Final Dinner" gets deep with spangling arpeggios, dusty classic drumcomputer beats and an unabashed nod in general to '80s Italo.
Glamour Mourgue' is a weird one, it's slow, creepy, with glimmers of heavy rock, but it's funky as hell. The 'Freudenthal' remix however speeds things up, and actually sounds more like an X-Files theme tune remix rather than a 'Glamor Mourge' remix although do we have the same earthy electric guitars as the original. The 'Modulaire' remix is still odd, it's a speedy version with the addition of off key organ tones. The 'Man 2.0' remix certainly catches the attention, with a continuous uncomfortable high pitch squeak, some fun echoing bongo and hints of animal noise
It's been a while since Llewellyn's last official release under that particular alias, but it's possible that you might have heard a thing or two under his Lake People moniker instead. Whatever the medium, the dude is back with his singular shade of house, this time via the Riotvan label. "The Long Run" starts by launching us in a cosmic space voyage guided by a warm crescendo of disco-friendly beats at the helm; "Again & Again" retains some of that interstellar energy except that here we're travelling in house gear, much like closing "Another Side Of You". Dreamy dance galore!
The Broomfield family troupe - led by Aaron Broomfield - laid down a sweet series of rare groove 45s during the late 70s, this Keb Darge-championed 45" from 79 (originally on Taurus) being one of the most popular. With its high energy, slick keys and sparkling percussion "Stop" sits slap in the middle of disco and boogie while "Doin' It Our Way" hits with much more of a jazz funk feel with bold harmonies hitting hard on the chorus. Previously spotted passing for L400 - it's another expert democratisation by AOTN.
'Hello' is a cool, calm ambient track with melancholic piano chords which occasionally move into glimmers of hope, there's a stunning vocal from Else Born which makes this track unmissable. The 'NTEIBINT remix' has the twangs of Midwest country, almost bringing the vocal into the realms of ballad, before breaking down to a more familiar funky sound for the chorus, and for us is the standout of track of the EP. The 'Area dub mix' is instrumental and minimal; so serene it's almost meditative, absolutely beautiful. The EP also comes with the 'extended mix' and the 'instrumental' which do exactly what they say on the tin.
'It's Go Time' has a cinematic vibe with orchestral strings along side the expected funky guitar, bright sparkling twinkles lighten the mood. 'Los Chicas' is a fun track with a shuffling shaker, which will have you shimmying with the best of 'em. Moving in to 'Shimitronix' and we've got a really fusion of modern electronic from the sci-fi samples to the subtlety detected jutting undertone.
This is a blissfully smooth collection of chilled out nu-disco. 'Cosmic Swoop' introduces us to the tone of the LP, with its slow moving beats and funky guitars, and old school sci-fi effects. The blobs of bass in 'To Get Closer' are unquestionably cool, they have a fat feeling which is sliced through the nonchalant piano. 'Dream In A Dream' as you can imagine cultivates a soft, relaxed vibe our favourite part on the track is the low end which is modern and warping. 'Somebody For Me' ends the release in pure style.
Well, you can't really go wrong with a track name Mandarine & Heroin can you, here we have a reworked remix EP of Northern Souls, latest funkadelic treats. Starting the release with chilled, laid back number, with bongo and repetitive beat, it's almost trance inducing. "Knee Deep' stays truer to it's groovy roots, the piano is so captivating, while the horns add a soulful vibe. 'Talk' is our favourite remix of the release with its 4/4 beat paten it tiptoes into the realms of house, but with vocals and string keep it's roots firmly dug into it's 70's influenced disco past.
The Whiskey Disco Small Batch series is custom made for sunny weather, water sports and festivals. The Baltic Beaches EP pairs the mastercraft of Moscow's Beard In Dust and Poland's Karol Alexander for three songs to soundtrack your Summer time. Each smacks of sublime breaks and Balearic keys. The deep slo-mo groove of "So Lonely" featuring those 808 State style bird calls, the '70s NYC soul jam that is "Jesienny Pan" and of course the lo-slung and dubby "Przyslowia" which is perfect to get stoned into the groove: we actually dug this one the most! Enjoy responsibly.
Exclusives
LINDSTORM - Tensions (Feedelity Recordings)
VARIOUS - Halal Collection (Disco Halal)
MIGHTY MOUSE - The Spirit (Space Native) - exclusive 25-09-2017
Exclusives
OLSEN - Bloom (Perfect Motion)
MIDNIGHT MAGIC - Sea Of Love (Remixes) (Soul Clap US)
MR BC feat L LONGCHAMP - Glamour Morgue (Nein)
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