Review: This is Skills' eighth release on Adam Beyer's label and it shows that the Dutch producer has developed a lot as a producer. Skills covers a lot of ground on this four-tracker, but the listener is never left with the sense that he has spread himself too thinly. The title track is a detuned, rolling affair, while "Fifth Gear" sees him adopt a straighter approach with its acid tones and tough, loopy rhythm. "Starfighter" takes its cues from the Sandwell school of techno and sees doubled up claps support subsonic bleeps. As a final salvo, there's "Rising Sun", where Skills draws on the legacy of Sterac for a deep but driving Detroit-style affair.
Review: Bart Skills has enjoyed a long-running relationship with Drumcode and Bells is his sixth EP on the label. While the Dutch producer is well-known for his heads-down, drum-heavy tools, the title track resounds to hypnotic bells and spine-tingling acid builds, coming across as a slightly more club-friendly take on Efdemin's sound. Of course, fans of Skils' linear productions - which includes label boss Adam Beyer - won't be disappointed with this release; the soaring bass and driving rhythm of "Ocean Drive", as well as the doubled up drums and infectious vocal samples from Rozalla's 'Everybody's Free? are effective but highly distinctive big room tracks.
Review: Mark Knights Toolroom label and the flagship Knights compilation series never fails to impress. For the latest installment they enlist the party fueled tech house sounds of Italy's leading light Stefano Noferini. Joining the ranks with the likes of; Umek, John Dalhback, and Fedde Le Grand, he digs deep for 20 of the biggest and best tech tunes around, including three exclusive productions of his own. It's a constant blast of energy at every turn, with just a few of the highlights coming from; Christian Smith, Pirupa, Marc Romby, and Bart Skils. An essential purchase!!
Review: Adam Beyer's label notches up the seventh A-Sides compilation in as many years. In keeping with its approach of featuring well-known Drumcode artists alongside newer artists, Volume 7 shines a light ion emerging techno talent. This includes the deep and dubbed out "Portable Paradise" by Anna, alongside upcoming Canadian artist Weska with the searing acid of "Other Places" and recent Drumcode debutant Boxia with the dreamy but rolling "Final Call". These emerging artists sit alongside techno veteran Thomas Schumacher, who drops the eerie but jacking "The Unseen", Alan Fitzpatrick collaborating with Scuba's SCB offshoot to deliver the tough tribal techno of "Untitled" and Dutch producer Bart Skills weighing in with the ominous big-room monster that is "West Of The Moon".
Review: A big congratulations to Adam Beyer and his esteemed Drumcode imprint celebrating 20 years in the business. His techno powerhouse has continuously and effortlessly remained relevant, championing the work of fellow Swedish legends Cari Lekebusch, Joel Mull and Christian Smith, to late noughties heroes like Paul Ritch, Kyle Geiger and Pig & Dan to present day stars like Nicole Moudaber, Joseph Capriati and Luigi Madonna. There's a lot of serious peak time artillery on here, rest assured. But for us, the highlights weren't limited to Alan Fitzpatrick's uplifting and downright epic "Terra Firma" with its massive drop, head honcho Beyer and Mark Reeve's "Nine Of You" with its darkly fierce and tunnelling groove plus Truncate's killer remix of Dustin Zahn's "Miss You". Honourable mention to newcomer Boxia; he's surely one to watch if the banging "Revolution" is anything to go by!