Review: As you'd expect, there's plenty to set the pulse racing on the latest multi-artist edition of Let's Play House's "LPH White" series. Label co-founder Jacques Renault sets the tone via the lolloping, bass-heavy filter-house bump of "No Strings Attached", where swirling orchestration gently rises to prominence over a bustling groove, before Kirsty Harper whips out her Roland TB-303 and lays down some seriously sleazy, Phuture style acid-jack. Laroze's "You Inspired Me" is a throbbing, filter-sporting romp through disco-house territory enlivened greatly by layered drums, while Keita Sano's "Party Vibes" successfully manipulates some superb samples in cahoots with a typically weighty and thickset house groove.
Review: Following inspired outings on D.KO, Let's Play House and Flux, Robin Lazore returns to RTCT Records after a three-year absence. The Bordeaux-born producer is in formidable - and we'd argue, surprisingly forthright - form from the off, tweaking his TB-303 mercilessly on the early '90s stadium house-goes-Chicago jack intensity of 'Amusez-Vous Bordel' before adding angular acid lines and razor-sharp hardcore stabs to a bouncy electro beat on 'Trust Yourself (Rave Mix)'. Elsewhere, 'Final Battle' is string-laden disco-house on steroids, Enfant Lune Sous Acid' is a bouncy slab of disco-house positive with added acid attacks, and 'Song For My Next Girlfriend' is a gorgeous instrumental hip-hop head-nodder that's as positive as a surprise tax rebate.
Review: Ask Bordeaux native Robin Laroze about influences and he'll cite the likes of Theo Parrish, Omar S and Moodymann. But he'll also namecheck Salsoul and Motown, and it's that side of his musical education that's most obvious on this EP comprised of five tracks, all of which come from the disco-fied end of the deep house spectrum. File 'I Wanna Know' under blissed-out, 'I Don't Need You' under energetic, 'Shine On' under authentically 70s-sounding, 'Let You Down' under soulful and 'Salut Michel' under jazz-flecked barrio funk... or just scoop up all five and chuck them into the box marked 'quality'.
Review: Laroze may not be one of the more hyped members of the new wave of French deep house producers currently making their mark, but his occasional releases are often more impressive than those by his contemporaries. Past 20 Years is his most expansive EP to date and is full of immaculately produced treats, from the swirling disco-house brilliance of opener "You Gotta Keep On" and thrusting warehouse bounce of revivalist rave-era house workout "7AM Feelings", to the anthem-like cheeriness of "What About Me". Interestingly, the EP's two deeper and more subtle productions - "Arcade Desire" and "What About Me" - are arguably the most impressive of the lot. Subtle, smoky, dusty and soul-soaked, they prove that he's about more than just party-starting hedonism.