Review: When they clicked at a showcase organized by Richy Ahmed last year, Ben Rau and the Jansons decided to join forces in the studio and make music together. This two-tracker showcases the first fruits of their collaborative labour. Lead cut "The Player" is particularly potent, with the fast-rising producers wrapping razor-sharp, mind-altering acid lines and sweaty female vocal samples around a booming, bass-heavy big room house groove. They change tack on "Le Fonque", employing dreamy electronics, breathless vocal snippets and jaunty, funk-fuelled bass on a touch chunk of mid-set deep house with definite funky house flourishes. It's nowhere near as muscular and breathless as its predecessor, but every bit as alluring.
Review: London producer Jansons is the latest artist to appear on Hot Since 82's label - and this diverse release suggests that this is not the last we will hear of him. "Ensemble" blurs the boundaries between house and techno with its buzzing bass and insistent back beats, while on "Spinnin", he takes inspiration from the sound of late 90s West Coast house to create a hazy, dub-heavy tribal groove. Most impressive is the title track, where insistent piano keys and a ponderous spoken word vocal crash in over a jittery, jacking track. Phil Weeks turns it into a spiky percussive affair on his rework, while Doc Martin's take on "Spinnin" sees the veteran US producer add some tripped out disco flavour to the mix.
Review: Michael Jansons has released on labels like Knee Deep In Sound, and recently 8-bit. He's back in action but this time on Yousef's Circus Recordings out of Liverpool with the tough rolling main-room tech house of "Switch", featuring some infectious female rap vocals atop. The Funk Dub up next is more sunny and uplifting, with its sexy latin flair and finally "Octave" hammers the message home in Motor City inspired hi-tech soul fashion - mad chord progression on this one. Top!
Review: Despite major setbacks such as a pandemic and economic decline, it's been another massive year for Hot Since 82 and the Knee Deep In Sound label. Just as it says on the tin, this is 2020: The Review - and where to start? Maybe with the label chief collaborating with acclaimed UK pop outfit Rudimental on the evocative acid drama of "Be Strong", the ever reliable James Solace with the infectious tribal house of "Time", Denney serves up the soulful melodic house epic "Reflections Of Time" and likewise Sam Holland provides some killer funky house on "Disco Dancer". Oh, and who could forget the punchy peak time tech house of ItaloBros' massive "Spacey".
Review: Given that the Amsterdam Dance Event (ADE) is happening on their doorstep, it's little surprise to see Armada Music's house offshoot Armada Subjekt releasing a celebratory compilation. Featuring no less than 30 cuts the label expects to do the business during the weeklong event, it's full to bursting with high quality club cuts. Highlights include Gerd Janson's chunky, acid-flecked revision of Joe Smooth classic "Promised Land", a muscular, mind-altering dark room take on Harry Romero's "Tania" by Honey Dijon, a sublime chunk of classic-sounding peak-time house from Low Steppa and Amy Douglas ("Burn Me Up"), a ludicrously sub-heavy slab of dark garage from Javi Nora and Piem, and some slick big room tech-house business by DJ Vivona.