We know very little about Leeds youngster Jonny Hopkinson, though something tells us we'll be hearing more about him very soon. You see, "Private Thoughts" is the epitome of bass-heavy, garage-influenced deep house, all thumping beats, nagging chords, gargantuan bass and wonky R&B vocal samples. The single's other original track, "Voodoo", turns Stevie Wonder's "Superstitious" into a riotous revivalist US garage jam. You wouldn't think it would work, but surprisingly it does. Remix-wise, the Lone style Fabe rework of "Private Thoughts" is pleasingly groovy, while Raffa FL's tweak of "Voodoo" is a balls-out shuffler that should appeal to fans of the Crosstown Rebels and Hot Creations sound.
While cynics might think that all you need to do to sell house records in 2012 is make them sound 20 years old, there's more to it than that. There are tons of US garage-influenced EPs around, but most of them don't pass muster. This newie from rising star Mikki Funk, though, is excellent. "Dub Fantasy" bristles with vintage elements, from the fluid synths and delay-laden vocals, to the stuccato drum machine rhythms of 1990s New York. The "Kool Vibe Dub" goes further in the same direction, sounding not unlike a vintage MK dub - all classic New Jersey organs and bumpin' beats. Bonus cut "I Ever", meanwhile, offers deeper grooves and some lovely synth bass.
Kool With Me (Antonio Del Prete remix) - (6:20) 122 BPM
Come Closer (original mix) - (6:59) 120 BPM
Come Closer (Dast (Italy) remix) - (8:11) 123 BPM
Raffa FL has clearly been listening to a lot of Hypercolour records. "Kool With Me", in particularly, sounds like a slightly deeper take on the bass-heavy UK deep house sound pushed forward by the likes of Huxley. It's well produced and rises and falls in the all the right places, riding a snare-heavy groove that just never stops (not literally, of course, that would be ridiculous). "Come Closer", on the other hand, reaches for the box marked "rave revival", whipping up a late night frenzy on the back of a bold bassline and some gargantuan pianos. Of the trio of accompanying remixes, it's DJ Nav's jazzier, deeper, bongo-laden tweak of "Kool With Me" that most impresses.