Motor City Drum Ensemble and Efdemin will be launching this year’s Dimensions Festival in London on March 2, and we have a pair of tickets to give away.
Tiga’s sophomore album Ciao! already boasts impressive names on writing and production duties with the likes of Soulwax, Gonzales, Beck and James Murphy. The latter co-wrote and produced the sincere original “Gentle Giant”, sounding reminiscent of the Pet Shop Boys or even more so, Soft Cell’s “Tainted Love”. On this remix EP, three more amazing producers are brought together, each offering very unique reinterpretations.
Loving the first entry by the ever-evolving Dutch producer, Martyn. Pursuing either techno, dubstep, garage, or house, he is always fusing many influences, which making his music harder to categorize with every new release. It also makes his music more interesting with every listen. Here, Martyn takes the loopy hollowness of the original and injects it with new life, breaking the elements up garage style, and adding (for lack of a better term) an “Enigma-like” dreamy effect on the vocals.
If you’re looking for the club version go straight for Berlin producer Efdemin’s awesome tech-house mix. He barely allows any of the original material to penetrate the driving 4/4, jacking hi-hats and rippling pulses, except on the break where it comes up for air with Tiga’s vocals “One step and a little touch can change the way you feel tonight”. The subtlety in Efdemin’s arrangement, and careful builds, are hypnotic.
Mathew Jonson’s heavier, spaced out versions offer a dub and vocal (although the vocal is a digital only affair). The dub version is an absolute killer, rocking a heavier beat, while spine tingling analogue synths replace the vocals. It reminds us of The Human League’s “Rock n’ Roll” instrumental or creepy visions of “Doctor Who’s” opening video. Three different yet talented artists all featured on one great release. Succeeds with good remixes, as well as individually sounding like different songs. Surely on this EP, there’s something for anybody, any mood or any place. Solid.
Review: Shingo Shimizu
Efdemin (aka Phillip Sollmann) made a stunning return to the production fold this year with his Chicago LP, the follow up his eponymous 2007 debut. Released on the generally excellent Hamburg imprint Dial, it was a fine exploration of jazz, minimalism, deep house, and, erm, Bart Simpson samples. We caught up with the German producer to find out what was in his record bag this month, and were highly impressed with what we found. Actress, Moodymann, Jus-Ed and more feature…
Dial records is really on a roll these days. After recently releasing a beautiful album by Pawel and their remarkable 10 year anniversary compilation, Dial comes back at us with the long awaited second album from Efdemin, Chicago. Berlin-based Efdemin (aka Phillip Sollmann) has been associated with the Hamburg-founded label since its inception a decade ago. His self-titled debut in 2007 was a stunning affair that resonated deeply with both the house and techno communities. After three years and several singles in between, Efdemin has finally graced us once again with nine new soul-striking tracks that combine the beauty and deepness we have come to associate with Efdemin’s production.
“Cowbell” starts things off with a vocal snippet, warbled organs and slow drum rolls as a prelude to “Shoeshine” which kicks things into higher gear with its tough drums and precise high-hats. All tracks seamlessly flow into each other, a concept many artists tend to overlook when making a full length album. This overall sense of flow makes it pleasure to listen to uninterrupted in order. Instead of finely balancing the line between house and techno, Chicago has more of a jazz-induced feeling to it- which is not to say that it’s light or too refined, but rather more intriguing and textured than your standard fare of straight up deep house or deep techno.
“Night Train,” “Le Grand Voyage” and “Round Here” are three tracks fans familiar with Efdemin’s first album will certainly find their groove in. Another highlight has to be the schaffel, swing beats of “Oh My God” complete with horns and organs interspersed with dripping percussive sounds that perfectly fall into the grooves of the beat. Efdemin has definitely taken a leap forward with Chicago.
Review: Steve Phillips