Review: Damian Lazarus' Crosstown Rebels imprint has been bringing some consistent quality over the last months, with releases by drum & bass legend DJ Krust and most recently Audiojack and Kevin Knapp's "These Days" which came with a killer remix by Pearson Sound. The label is now into the fourth edition in the SPIRITS compilation series, with highlights coming from Radio 1 legend Pete Tong teaming up with Italian tech house producer Alex Kennon on the slinky groove of "Apache", the ever reliable Francesca Lombardo with the mesmerising cosmic dancefloor journey "Freak On Sea" as well as Los Angelno pair Lubelski & Xkylar with the afterhours minimal shuffle of "Passion Fruits" and the Minus affiliated Matador with the lurking bass and moody atmospherics of "Vulture" - plus many more.
Lubelski, Randy Ry - "Feeling A Vibe" - (6:18) 127 BPM
The James Brown Track - (6:33) 127 BPM
Lubelski - "Anxiety" - (6:21) 126 BPM
Review: With sampled, dusty drums and male soul vox, the title track here sounds like something Osunlade or Opolopo might come up with for Classic, while 'Anxiety' adopts an even more wonky, cut-up approach and will appeal to fans of, say, Chicken Lips or Headman. The EP's other two tracks are a tad more accessible/commercial: any veterans of the mid-90s handbag wars will smile upon hearing 'Feeling A Vibe', as Chrissy Ward's 'Right And Exact' vocal gets chopped 'n' looped in rambunctious disco-tech fashion then spiked with a little punk-funk attitude, while as for 'The James Brown Track' - well, you can guess who that one samples, can't you?!
Review: With a background in electrical engineering, Los Angeleno Jake Lubell aka Lubelski is always exploring the sounds and frequencies of analogue gear. As a long-time guest of the Desert Hearts crew and an anchor to his newer Percomaniacs label, he's no stranger to Dirtybird either - where he presents his sophomore effort entitled "Lost My Senses". The track is a good serving of wonky and bass-driven funk, with classic house motifs throughout. Second offering "Broken Motor" is one of the most tripped out minimal tech house jams we've heard all year, packed full of modular style blip, blurp and bleep all the way.
Review: Following up some great releases by industry veterans such as Dachshund, AND.ID and Argy in recent times, Leeds-based label Gruuv are back with more tough rolling tech house for the main room courtesy of rising Los Angelano Lubelski, following up promising efforts on elrow, Percomanaics and Deeperfect. As always, a west coast vibe is pervasive throughout the 'At Night' EP, from the deep and druggy boompty action of the title track, to some slinky and hypnotic tech house for the morning hours on "Don't You Leave Me Hanging" until getting back to the program on the bass-driven dub of "What U Got" - which is guaranteed to get those heads down on the dancefloor.
Review: With their sold out party at Space being cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Dirtybird's annual pilgrimage to Miami may not be back on, but their brand new 10-track compilation to accompany it certainly is! As usual, they've picked up a bunch of unique tracks from established artists and newcomers alike with a penchant for fat, bouncy and bass-driven tech house - a perfect way to soundtrack your lockdown party over the coming weeks. Highlights not limited to: Brazilian upstart Cour.T's NSFW party starter "Acid Pu$$y", the tunnelling 303 acid of Monki's "On Course", Kevin Knapp getting his boompty on as ever with "Dig This" and Jonathan Landossa giving you a microdose of mind altering madness on the thriller "Mind Control". Elsewhere, we're not sure what Morelia and Luke Andy were on when they threw down the the wonky and off-kilter "Wobblesocket" (but we're lovin' it!) and there's' a mastermix of all the aforementioned and more by the ever reliable Gettoblaster.
Black Girl & White Girl - "Mystikal" - (6:16) 129 BPM
Sosa - "Booty Shake" - (6:09) 126 BPM
Review: Repopulate Mars, the LA-based label headed up by Lee Foss and born out of the nomadic party of the same name, bring us their first compilation album, which features 18 house and tech-house cuts built with one purpose in mind: to get booties moving on dancefloors. Black Girl White Girl, Martin Ikin and Andre Salmon are among the better-known contributors but more undergound names make up most of the tracklist, and the overall mood throughout is fast-paced and energetic, with highlights including Ikin's Donna Allen-sampling 'Serious Talk', Mhod & Federico Ambrosi's phat n' funky 'Groovin' and the robotic techy stomp of Syap's 'Two Fifteen PM'.
The More I Know, The Less I Know (original mix) - (6:05) 126 BPM
Dip Into A Dream (feat SOHMI - David Pher remix) - (7:00) 124 BPM
Review: Jake Lubell aka Lubelski is back on top Leeds label Gruuv, following up last year's Revolution EP and releases on Desert Hearts, Percomaniacs and SNOE. The tough rolling and funky tech house of "Dip Into A Dream" is a perfect fit for Audiojack's label, and the vocals on it are super sexy! This is followed by a wicked remix from fellow label regular David Pher, who takes the track into deeper and woozier territory - and is perfect for the warm-up or the afterhours alike. Second original offering "The More I Know, The Less I Know" (Original Mix) gets on it with a dirty acid driven bounce, that's sure to get the adrenaline levels up.