Review: Sankeys resident Darius Syrossian was chatting with London tech house legend Bushwacka at the beginning of lockdown about starting a collaboration. When the latter checked out what Syrossian had been releasing on Moxy, there was a feeling that it would indeed work and could be the first of many. With that in mind Crosstown Rebels presents "Return To Jericho", a deep and evocative joint featuring hypnotic polyrhythms and a dubby atmosphere that makes for perfect mood music. This is followed by the more minimal and moodier groove of "Akkabi Blue" that's just perfect for going deeper into the afterhours.
Review: Phil Weeks' long-running French house/deep house label Robsoul Recordings round up the best of their 2020 output in one high-VFM package. As per Robsoul's MO generally, you won't find a lot in the way of navel-gazing introspection or pointless, self-indulgent experimentalism here - Robsoul have always specialised in dropping beats to move your feets and this year's crop doesn't disappoint! The wonky, jazzy garage of The Mekanism's 'Signs', the raw jack of Joss Moog's 'So Good So Fresh', Demuir's strutty hip-houser 'Nice And Dutty' and Jade Cox's looping, west coast-ish 'Realise' are just some of the highlights of a fine collection.
Review: Pumping out the bangers like Corona ain't no thing, Darius Syrossian returns to Hot Creations after making his debut back in 2018 with the Moxy EP. The lead track, defined by its crunchy warehouse boom and stuttering 909 percussion, sees a subtle bassline hold down a major groove while various vocal snippets and narratives of bravado fill in the gaps. "Boujee B" on the flip opts for an instrumental, tribal and tech house alternative, full of heavy offbeat percussion, keys, progressions and pumping club vibes.
Knowhat - "The Magician" (original mix) - (8:13) 125 BPM
Review: Riva Starr's Snatch! celebrate 10 years in the game in 2020, and this collection rounds up the best of their output over the latter half of that first decade. Tuff, chuggy tech-house is, unsurprisingly, the dominant sound here, but it's by no means all that's on offer - Rogue D flirts with 80s boogie on 'Take It Easy', for instance, while Soul Speech loops up Heatwave's 'Boogie Nights' on 'Soul Speech'. With tracks from the heavy-hitting likes of Max Chapman, Darius Syrossian, Steve Bug, Groove Armada, Wade and Denis Cruz, and cheeky reworks of classics like 'My Beat' and 'Pride (A Deeper Love)', there's useful ammunition here for house jocks of many different micro-persuasions.
Review: Already road-tested at his Ibiza residency during the summer, Syrossian says that "Danzer" was made in response to his frustration at modern house and techno. Certainly, its stream of consciousness vocal sample, shimmering chords and massive, filtered disco riff will endear it to any one who has grown sick of by the numbers gloomy techno. On the 'Techno Tool' take, the chords are deeper and more intense, while the bass booms powerfully. The other interpretation, offered by Adesse Versions, is markedly different. It see him lower the tempo, add in steely drums and drop a wiry acid line that niggles and nags like a Mediterranean matriarch.