Before making a name for himself as one of New York’s most prolific makers of off-kilter house and disco, DFA associate Jacques Renault was something of a low-slung disco fetishist. His first releases, as one half of Runaway, were a series of oddball disco and punk-funk re-edits on Roy Dank’s Wurst Edits imprint. In an edit scene saturated with string-drenched reworks of familiar favourites, those Wurst 12”s were a revelation.
This new 12” for Hand of God sees Renault return to those roots with a pair of distinctly heavyweight disco jams. In style and feel, they sound like those early edit excursions fused with Renault’s more recent trips into organic deep house. Lead cut “Marilyn’s Gold” sounds like it was inspired by Renault’s superb remix of Midnight Magic’s “Beam Me Up”. It has a similarly prominent disco bassline, this time sitting atop some of the greatest drums ever to grace a disco record. They may not be original – anyone with a serious interest in disco will spot the source – but they still sound great. On top of this, Renault throws all manner of bizarre and brilliant loops and samples. The effect is mesmerizing. It’s not always easy listening, but it will sound formidable blasting out of a big soundsystem at five in the morning.
Compared to the A, flipside “Pleasure” offers some light relief. To these ears, it sounds like Basement Jaxx’s “Fly Life” recreated by Patrick Adams. It boasts the sort of deadly dancefloor groove that’s near impossible to dislike. Furthermore, the action all revolves around a near-perfect disco bassline. Honestly, it’s a killer. Throw in some well-timed vocal hooks and Renault’s usual late night production sheen, and you’ve got a real winner. If they’re not dancing to this in sweaty Brooklyn basements already, they soon will be.
Review by Matt Anniss