Luke Standing, a UK producer based in Berlin, is behind the Blue Hour project and it sounds like he has immersed himself in 90s techno. The title track is a big room groover, its terse acid lines mixed with hissing hats and woozy filters, with a series of snare rolls ensuring that it has the required effect. "Meridian" is of a similar nature, with dramatic chord stabs unfolding over an insistent rhythm, while "Solace" sees Standing focus again on acidic sounds, realised against a spooky, Detroit-style groove. "Inner Reflections" provides an ambient outro, but fans of vintage Dave Angel and labels like Pacific should check this release.
Although NYC producer Bookworms has been busy of late collaborating with Steve Summers on their Confused House label, solo productions from the man are generally few and far between, which makes Japanese Zelkova particularly welcome. Described by the label as a "divergence" from his previous material, with "dusty crunched out samples and programming" giving way to a "man/machine element", these three crunchy tracks are a far cry from the "African Rhythms" track unleashed on the world all those years ago.