Review: The latest instalment of Crosstown Rebels' long-running Get Lost series comes from odd German deep house/tech house fusionist Acid Pauli, a man who looks more like a hairy Open University geology lecturer than a top-flight DJ. Reflecting Pauli's own style, the compilation's 41 unmixed tracks touch on shuffling, eyes-closed deepness, tactile techno, dream house and tongue-in-cheek silliness (the brilliant space-pop of "In My Spaceship" by Jan Turkenburg. More impressively, there are a string of previously unseen exclusives, including excellent tracks from Nicolas Jaar, Nu and Acid Pauli himself.
Review: The Italian-born, classically trained DJ and producer Francesca Lombardo makes her first appearance on Poker Flat with the amazing "Flumen" - a mesmerising sonic experience with its hypnotising aesthetic. Prepare to enter freefall down the rabbit hole on this one. This is followed by the slinky and up-tempo groove of "Psycho" which is jam packed full of reliable dancefloor dynamics. In addition to appearances on top labels such as Crosstown Rebels, Bedrock and Bar 25, Lombardo demonstrates her mastery at the controls here, with two tracks that riff on the theme of water, and how rivers move through time and space.
Review: Crosstown Rebels head honcho, Damien Lazarus, has taken it upon himself (and his crew) to mark the "cosmically significant" date of December 21 with a 24-hour megaparty in Mexico. For those of us unable to attend in person, this accompanying compilation is the next best thing. Beginning with Pier Bucci's fittingly titled, and deliciously trippy, "Mayans", we get the exotic and trancey "The Prophecy" by Quenum, Matthew Jonson's sinister tech-houser "In Search Of A New Planet With Oxygen", the sublime "Cosmic Dancer" by Francesca Lombardo, the urgent menace of "Greed Insanity" by Fur Coat and the haunting, end-of-the-world vibes of "2012" by Jay Haze.
Review: Italy's Francesca Lombardo saw her debut on Crosstown Rebels back a few years ago, and the artiste returns to the mighty imprint with a fresh four-tracker for the body and soul. "Perseidi" is a hypnotic shot of house psychedelia that flutters away amid fuzzy low frequencies and rattling percussion twists, a tune that's backed by a remix from Transmat's Aril Brikha who jacks it up and adds in a fine layer of sci-fi Detroit vibes. "Uttermost" is a little funkier and bouncier thanks to its wavy chords, while "Tulips On Mars" goes deeper into cyber space with its cinematic bassline and spacey pads. Hot stuff, this!
Review: The irritatingly on-point Crosstown Rebels are back with yet another instant hit from Italian wonder girl, Francesca Lombardo. "What To Do" is an infectious, late night, lo-fi house tune with Lombardo's evocative vocals running all over it; topping it off are a fine selection of remixes from Infinity Ink, Matrixxman and Luca Cazal, the latter churning out a fine dub re-work of the original. Big!
Review: Steve Bug founded Poker Flat two decades ago and while much has changed since, the quality of the music has remained a constant. From established artists to upstarts alike, the Hanseatic powerhouse has introduced discerning house and techno to dancefloors far and wide - from Berlin to L.A. and everywhere in between. The label marked its 20th anniversary this year: a huge achievement and one of which everyone involved with the imprint is proud of. Fans will not just consider this just a celebratory compilation then, but certainly as a commemorative one as well. Highlights not limited to: boss man Bug's new slinky and hypnotic collaboration with Spain's UNER titled "Mantis On The Moon", the ever reliable Francesca Lombardo delivering some moody dancefloor drama on "Flumen" and acclaimed German sound engineer Hannes Bieger proving he's capable of even more sonic mastery on the other side of the desk - as heard on his collaboration with Sailor & I "Chemistry" (Dub). Elsewhere, label staple Mihai Popoviciu appears with two tracks, we particularly enjoyed the sensual, late-night boompty jam "Sleepwalking" and legend Ian Pooley's sublime rework of Eva Be's "Delight".