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09 Sep 10
01 Jun 11
Review: With releases already racked up on Kindisch, Murmur and Hypercolour, it's obvious that Alex Jones isn't another generic tech-house artist. Jones's ability to squeeze new ideas out of existing forms becomes all the more apparent on "Have It Your Way", where doubled up, dubby claps and a pulsing bass frame Shoeda's off-centre vocals. Similarly on "30 Lengths", Jones does the unexpected and underpins a jacking, Chicago-style track with splurging bass tones. "5 Minute Warning" is also from left of centre, its delicate glassy bells combined with a mid-tempo groove and out there vocals for another offbeat gem.
04 Apr 11
Played by: Pele
01 Jun 12
Played by: Hrdvsion
Review: Irish producer Bren Gregoriy aka Chymera has released a series of melodic techno records, but his latest album sees him enter a new realm. "The Drop", with its rich strings and sensuous woodwind, explores beatless ambient, while "Who Bends First" is like a halfway house between Ian O'Brien and alt rock, with live drums crashing and flailing to the backdrop of warm Rhodes keys. "Strange Things Are Afoot" makes reference to Chymera's deep techno sound, but the greatest achievement of Misadventure is that it gives vent to Gregoriy's pop leanings. It is audible on the dreamy, vocal-led "Drowning", but is expressed most articulately on "The Chase", where dead paced beats and playful, infectious vocals make for a real FM pop tune.
08 Oct 12
Played by: Estroe
Review: Brendan Gregoriy has an intuitive knack for melodies, and on "Threads" he brings this skill to the fore. Over brittle percussion and a techy, somewhat metallic rhythm, he unleashes a glorious, full-blooded melodic flourish, all minor keys and no bombast. It's testament to Gregoriy's abilities that he has managed to attract two highly-respected producers to remix his work. Philly veteran King Britt turns "Trapped in Amber" into a dubby groove, its booming bass underpinning an angelic vocal covered in swathes of acid textures. Meanwhile, Steve Moore drops a version of "Swim Away", which focuses on a spacey, spaced out synth line and a lumbering bass.
17 Dec 12
Review: This second raft of remixes that interpret Brendan Gregoriy's original material as Chymera prove to be just as inventive as the first. Connaisseur have commissioned Jacob Korn and Orlando Voorn to remake "An Island In Space" and deliver equally idiosyncratic takes. Korn's version is based on a surging, rippling bass and a snaking groove. When the track breaks down into a spacey, Moog solo, it seems almost at odds with the prevailing mood, but Korn is a master arranger and it all makes sense. The second version from Orlando Voorn is longer and more epic; over a rolling rhythm the juxtaposition of summery keys and booming bassline sounds strangely compatible.
15 Oct 10
16 May 12
23 Dec 10
24 Aug 11
Review: Distortion aka James Myatt comes from Chicago, but on Head, it sounds like he feels more attached to the legacy of European techno. "Throwback" provides the most obvious reference to continental influences, with its gentle melodies, chiming bells and vocal refrain of "to the sound of the underground" coming across like a mixture between Efdemin's intricacy and Superpitcher's breathy seduction. "Ocean Floor" opts for a subtle approach as well, but its pulsing bass and reverberating claps mean that it doesn't shy from the dancefloor either. Myatt changes tact on the title track and finally pays tribute to his home town's heroes: its niggling bass and fragile synths are lifted straight from the Larry Heard textbook, while its acid vapour trail is inspired by Armando.
01 Feb 12
11 Nov 09
04 Feb 10
09 Jul 10
19 Nov 10
24 Dec 12
Played by: Timo Maas
30 Jun 11
Review: On this excellent two-tracker, Hamburg-based tech-house boffins Kollektiv Turmstrasse (AKA Christian Hilscher and Nico Plagemann) get the remix treatment from the always reliable Jimpster and Robag Wruhme. While the former's typically slinky deep house rub of "Was Bleibt" has peaktime potential (think sweet strings, soaring vocals and faithfully chunky bottom end pressure), it's the Wighomy Brothers man who most impresses. His version of "Heimat" offers more atmospheric thrills, building a deliciously crackly groove around booming low end pulses, cascading music box figures and a truly spellbinding combination of strings and harp. It's nothing less than mesmerising - deep tech-house at its best.
03 Sep 12
21 Oct 11
Review: The German house duo's "Uneins" gets two different remix treatments. The version by Of Norway is closer in sound to Turmstrasse's own approach as clapping hands are smartly deployed as a percussive backing and the breathy, building synths that are the trademark of labels like Diynamic and Conaisseur rise to the fore. However, the key difference here is the soulful male vocals that gradually come to dominate the track, and ensure that the breakdown is even more epic than usual. Aril Brikha's take sees him opt for a different tact than is his wont. Ditching the epic techno melodies, the Swedish producer uses solid beats, a funk bassline and rasping percussion to create a soulful, unhurried house groove.
04 Feb 13
Review: The German label continues on its mission to release the world's most melodic house music, adding some surprises along the way. "Trace Ace" is typical of the imprint's penchant for swoonsome hooks, with sublime riffs and gentle guitar strumming unfolding over rolling, dubby beats. "Changeover" is cut from similar cloth; lithe, hissing percussion and seductive piano lines lead into a seductive break down that dominates the arrangement. But the release is different to most Connaisseur releases thanks to Ghostek's input. The producer takes the original track and turns it into a shuffling, rumbling number - in particular, the 'Garridge' remix is characterised by reflective piano keys and an introspective feeling.
16 Jul 10
20 Jan 12
Played by: Enzo Canale
Review: The ever reliable Germany imprint Connaisseur returns with this rock-solid four tracker. First up is Michael Sowbug's "Proof", in which a political speech is twisted in a drunken manner similar to Dinky's remix of The Royal We's "Party Guilt" and placed atop a sumptuous bed of cosy pads, before UK deep house ledge Jimpster turns in a typically stylish instrumental refix of Kollektiv Tumrstrasse's "Was Bleibt". Up next is Distortion's stargazing, arpeggio-driven "Ballte Your Music" and, finally, "Have It Your Way", a sultry collaboration between Alex Jones and Shenoda.
08 Apr 11
Played by: Chris Lynch / Of Norway
Review: It's obvious that Norwegian duo Lil'Wolf and Chris Lynch aka Of Norway come from a DJing background. "Thirst" is a tripped out release that veers seamlessly between styles, and some of the tracks are extended to over 12 minutes. The title track reflects their approach, a pulsing, low-slung groove populated by heavy claps and a soaring bassline. "The Bleeding" is informed by a similar aesthetic, but this time the focus is on gurgling acid as woozy chords and atmospheric keys appear and disappear again throughout the extended groove. The dub edit is more direct, with its marching drums tempering the wobbly, unpredictable acid.
23 Apr 12
Played by: Seth Troxler
Review: If you're looking for an esoteric take on modern house, you've come to the right place. "Libertine" is an epic slice of stoner dance music, its dubby drums laying down a loose rhythmic marker. But it's the dreamy sound scapes, effortlessly disjointed vocals and chiming effects that make the original version sound like a cross between Nick Curly and Howard Marx. Losoul tries to make sense of the soupy original and does a fine job. Logical and angular but also including jazzy stabs and melodic riffs, his remix demonstrates why he's still one of the most distinctive voices in house music.
17 Jun 10
Played by: Chris Lynch / Of Norway, Anthony Mansfield, Juno Recommends Minimal/Tech House, DJ Assassin (Recode Recordings)
Review: Frankfurt-based label Connaisseur Recordings precede their third instalment of their Grand Cru compilation, due out at the end of this month, with a three track taster courtesy of Of Norway, DJ Assassin and Martin Beume. Of Norway's "Skogen Kaller" opens the release will a skippy jaunt through contented minimal, tech house. Its hook is the strange melody parts that play out above the simple yet feet-tapping beat. DJ Assassin's "Deep Riddim" is a deep and dubby swagger amongst walls of bass and Martin Beume delves into to some tingling atmospherics on "Mainspring."
30 Oct 08
Played by: Matt.m