Review: The Quartet Series label is born out of the collaboration between like-minded house enthusiasts, four producers who share a similar vision of club music and who have each earned their stripes on different labels. First up, we have Local Talk's Crackazat with "Lindop Circles", a gloriously laid-back house chiller with a funky twist, Quintessentials contributor Saine goes for the proper 'chug' approach on his wavy "Prime Chops" tune, "Totally Not Mystique" by Apparel Music's Nachtbraker is a woozy, bass-heavy stomper, and Gnork heads straight to the warehouse with his minimal, Chicago-filtered "Chord Tool". Ah, yes.
Review: This follow-up to last year's Gentleman Cuts EP is a significant release for Quintessentials. It's their 50th release in total, and contains material from some very familiar faces. There's Nachtbraker, whose "Bronco" is a lesson in fuzzy electro/deep house fusion, and Ponty Mython, who predictably steals the show with a rock solid chunk of funky disco/deep house fusion. Similarly, impressive is the contribution from rising star Soul of Hex, with the Mexican brilliantly joining the dots between punk-funk, dub disco, punk-funk and deep house on the sweaty dancefloor hustle of "Body Shine". Those looking for more straightforward deep house flavours should check the Andres style dusty beats, soulful vocal samples and chiming melodies of Mat Chiavorolo's "Breakfast At Mat's Bar".
Review: Nachtbraker has tended towards the prolific in recent years, but by his standards he's had a very quiet 2020. Here he fires up his self-titled label for the first time in over 12 months and offers up a typically eclectic selection of club-focused treats. The star attraction is arguably 'Bay Be Blu', an all-action affair rich in bustling breakbeats, jungle-influenced sub-bass weight, and tons of attractive, melodious synthesizer sounds. The tidy original mix kicks off the EP, and the arguably even better 12" version ends it. In between, you'll find the atmospheric, ambient house influenced, deep house/breaks fusion of 'Warmer', the bleeping, UKG-tinged late-night swing of 'Tangelo Dreams', and the off-kilter electro/skewed house fusion of 'Drip'.
Review: Quartet Series main man Nachtbraker has released music on plenty of high profile imprints over the years - Heist, Dirt Crew and Hudd Traxx most frequently - but he's never released on Aus Music before. His label debut is a typically confident affair, with the Dutch producer dishing up a mixture of proto-house influenced deep house funk ("QT & The Lizards"), chunky house grooves and stunning, synth-pop influenced electronics ("De Zon") and deliciously dreamy, sun-kissed breakbeat house ("Nar Hon Inte Ar Dar (Sunrise Mix)"). Arguably best of all though is opener "Fatoe Morgana", a throbbing, all action mix of razor-sharp acid riffs, rising synthesizer motifs, drowsy chords and restless but sturdy grooves.
Review: Nachtbraker's latest rock-solid EP features previously unreleased remixes of tracks from his 2018 album "When You Find A Stranger In The Alps" by some of his musical friends and acquaintances. The headline-grabbing rework comes from Wolf Music regular Frits Wentink, who brilliantly re-imagines "LOL" as a rubbery, off-kilter fusion of broken beats, tropical vocal snippets, dreamy chords and P-funk-fuelled synth sounds. Elsewhere, Central gives "Flambo" the French touch treatment, Nachtbraker himself reaches for the squelchy acid bass on an off-kilter deep house "Evolutionary Mix" of "Just Doing My Thang" and Nemo Vachez's dub mix of "Horsepony" is the kind of dubbed-out ambient techno stroll that stirs memories of classic early '90s releases.
Review: Back in the spring, Quartet Series founder Nachtbraker launched a new label in his own name via the typically strong "Parmigiana EP". Somewhat predictably, this follow-up is equally as potent. Our pick of the bunch is opener "Leonardo Ceviche", a thrusting, bass-heavy peak-time workout that layers deep space chords and starry synth lines over a chunky techno groove. "One" is, if anything, even more ballsy and bass-heavy, with audible dub-house influences and plenty of energy-creating pots and pans percussion, while "Havel" sees the Dutch producer deliver a glassy-eyed chunk of loved-up deep house lusciousness. Brilliantly, the accompanying "Trip Mix" reinvents the track as a DJ Sotofett style analogue dub workout.
Review: Nachtbraker is in a suitably giddy mood on this four-track missive, which marks the Dutch producer's first new material since the release of his rather fine album "When You Find A Stranger In The Alps" last autumn. All four tracks are ballsy and excitable, with the Quartet Series founder wrapping spacey electronics and rich chords around tough-off-kilter rhythms and booming basslines. Our pick of the bunch is probably "Number 33", where loose-limbed drums and powerful sub-bass underpin creepy melodic motifs and cascading lead lines, though the deep electro-influenced shuffle of "Parmigiana" and bumping, UK garage-influenced deepness of "Mild Lifestyle" are almost as impressive.
Review: Given his productivity over the last four years, it's rather a surprise to find that "When You Find A Stranger In The Alps" is Mautits Verwoerd AKA Nachtbraker's debut album. Predictably, the sometime Heist Rand Dirt Crew producer is in fine form throughout, serving up an expansive, 13-track set that effortlessly flits between sparkling, melodious deep house floor fillers ("Flambo", "Randy"), reggae-tinged club tracks ("NSFW"), bouncy techno ("You Can't Run"), soul and disco-inspired mid-tempo shufflers ("The Dream Sequence", "Just Doing My Thing"), funk rock smashers ("Aliens") and a surprisingly large number of ambient interludes and MPC-driven beat-scapes. In other words, it ticks a lot of boxes whilst remaining enjoyable and entertaining throughout.
Review: Somewhat surprisingly, this three-track EP marks Nachtbraker's first solo salvo on the Quartet Series label he established in 2016. Happily, it's a bold and thrill-packed affair, starting with the wild, jazz-funk-goes-disco-house flex of opener "Small Towel People", which peppers a pounding house groove with stratospheric synth solos, jazz-fired double bass and all manner of quirky, energy-packed samples. Elsewhere, the sweaty jazz-house-XXL vibe continues on shoulder-swinging smasher "Kippendijen", whose bombastic beats are perfectly matched by a relentless bassline, before "Zomaar" sees our hero effortlessly join the dots between jaunty, MPC-driven hip-hop beats and drowsy, chopped-up deep house.
Review: Story has it that a bunch of Amsterdam's current scene heroes had studios in the basement of a hotel opposite the former iconic Trouw nightclub (RIP). One morning, local enfant terrible San Proper happened to cross paths with Nachtbraker (early on a Tuesday morning) and that's how this collaboration of sorts came about. More specifically, San Proper "casually grabbed a microphone.. Nachtbraker pressed record, Dr. Proper got his inner Mick Jagger on, and behold: Misses, madame, mademoiselle was born". Hear the cowboy of minimal house croon over Nachtbraker's funky disco loops on "M.m.m" (feat San Proper's Elegy), while Hamburg's finest Session Victim remix the track next: giving it more dancefloor dynamic. Second original offering "Hamdi" is a hammering disco house joint that will really rock the house, while the remix up next by Bli takes it down a couple of notches, plus a slight Afro touch into something deeper to mood light the early evening.
Review: Just like a well-placed lamp, coffee table or framed painting of dogs playing pool, Nachtbraker's latest EP for Dirt Crew Recordings Really Ties The Room Together. Interior design advice aside, the title track is one of his strongest for some time; a thrusting, energy-packed bumper packed full of intricate percussion hits, cyclical chords, fuzzy vocal samples, occasional horn stabs and subtle Latin influences. The fun continues with the warm, low-slung bass, drowsy chords and metronomic drum hits of "Rew". Arguably best of all, though, is the accompanying "Rerub" of that track, which transforms it into a swinging, acid-laden jacker.
Review: Nachtbraker's latest expansive EP for Heist Recordings - his first release of 2016 - boasts a host of hot, floor-friendly excursions. The EP's first two missives offer two distinctly different takes on disco-house - the throbbing sub-bass, extra percussion hits and early Daft Punk riffs of "Gotta Act To React", versus the smooth, classic disco-sampling loop-jam "Pollo Con Pollo" - before the woozy, drawn out "Intermezzlow" allows the Dutch producer to showcase the groovy, downtempo side to his work. The accompanying "Intermezzo" is a jazzy, percussive deep house variation on the same sun-kissed theme, while "Gotta Act To React (Float Mix)" re-casts the EP's opening tune as a hazy deep house bumper.
Review: Following quietly impressive outings on Hudd Trax and Heist, Nachtbraker returns to Dirt Crew Recordings, the label on which he made his recording debut in early 2014. There's much to admire, beginning with the rich, analogue-sounding chords, loosely programmed deep house beats and cute electric piano flourishes of "Hump". "Backstabber" and "Time Is Of The Essence" are chunkier, bass-heavy, late night affairs, with the latter subtly doffing a cap towards Floating Points more dancefloor-friendly excursions. Frenetic, hissing jazz percussion comes to the floor on deep roller "Monday Morning", before "Yaaa" brings the curtain down on another solid EP via smooth grooves, comforting chords and well-placed hip-hop samples.
Review: Given Nachtbraker's links with fellow Amsterdam deep house producers Detroit Swindle - he made his debut on their Heist Recordings imprint earlier in the year - it was probably only a matter of time before he turned up on Dirt Crew Recordings. As label debuts go, the Janus EP is pretty strong. It does an excellent job of summarizing his particular take on deep house, which tends to be warm, rolling and soul-flekced, with intricate instrumentation and strong grooves. "Alright", for example, laces looped pianos and an organic-sounding bassline over a shuffling rhythm, while both "Warme Kachel" and "Braun" meld jazz-influenced beat patterns with tumbling melodies and toasty chords. As for "Janus", it's a near perfect study in disco-influenced dub house.
Review: The comic book-inspired Quartet Series returns to action, with another four studio superheroes joining the label's unofficial 'League of Extraordinary House Producers'. Returning hero Nachtbraker kicks things off with "Dobie", a quirky foray into percussion rich, jazz-house territory that packs serious dancefloor punch. Laurence Guy successfully breaks up the beats on the deep and woozy "Love & Be Loved", while Tommy Vicardi Jnr works his DJ Sneak style beats and cut-up samples hard on the deliciously energetic "Aplomb". Finally, LK doffs a cap to R&B, hip-hop and Detroit deep house on the pitched-down 4/4 shuffle of closer "Honey", which should appeal to those who enjoy the work of Marcel Vogel, Inkswel and Andres.
Review: Predictably, the latest volume in Heist's Roundup series, in which label artists remix each other's tracks, is another must-heave collection of club cuts. Check, for example, Fouk's tasty interpretation of Nachtbraker's "Hamdi" - a glorious fusion of rubbery disco, sparkling electrofunk and percussion-laden deep house - the Afro-fired Alma Negra deep house remix of Nebraska's "Big Plate Chicken" and the toasty peak-time warmth of the latter's fine revision of Fouk's "With Lasers". Elsewhere, label bosses Detroit Swindle deliver a lusciously loved-up and melodious, peak-time take on Parker Madicine's "Heartbreaker" and Nachtbraker turns the Swindlers' "Can't Hold It" into a dub-fired chunk of hot-stepping deep house goodness.
Review: As you'd expect, the latest volume in Dirt Crew's regular Deep Love compilation series features far more hits than misses. As with previous installments in the long-running series, Deep Love 2017 is mostly made up of previously unheard material from label favourites and like-minded guest producers. Highlights come thick and fast throughout, and include the horn-laden Latin disco-house brilliance of M.ono's "Jamas", the jazzy, Compost style broken beat deepness of Felix Leifur's "Record", the loved-up shuffle of Loz Goddard's impeccable "Now is Where We Are" and a touch of 21st century jazz-funk/deep house fusion by Ponty Mython. Also worth a listen is the contribution from Sheffield beat-smith Thatmanmonkz, who once again delivers a hazy chunk of ultra-deep, soul-flecked dancefloor bliss.
Review: Heist Recordings brings down the curtain on another successful year with their now traditional Roundup release, an expansive EP featuring "family remixes" of material released over the previous 12 months. As usual, there's much to enjoy, from the cheery, disco-tinged goodtime bump of Detroit Swindle's rework of Obas Nenoor's "Wakee", to Frits Wentink's jazzy, lo-fi, swinging deep house remake of Detroit Swindle's "Future Imperfect". Other highlights include a skuzzy, acid-fired interpretation of Nebraska's "It Won't Be Long" by Nachtbraker, and Nebraska's sunny, jammed-out fix-up of Frits Wentink's "Rising Sun, Falling Coconut". Best of all, though, is Ouer's remix of Nachtbraker's "Pollo Con Pollo", which boasts twinkling electric piano solos riding a thrusting analogue bassline and breezy disco guitars.
Review: Congratulations to Germany's Dirt Crew Recordings, which marks a century of releases with a celebratory volume of the popular Deep Love compilation series. As befits the momentous occasion, the 11 tracks on offer are all exclusive and previously unreleased. Predictably, there's plenty to enjoy, from the dusty, crackly deep house warmth of Felix Leifur's "Feels Like", and classic U.S garage swing of Ponty Mython's "New York, New York", to the sweet, jazz-flecked haziness of Harry Wolfman's "Rainbow Set", and Huerta's dreamy, glassy-eyed Balearic deep house cut, "Blvrd". Throw in fine contributions from big hitters Detroit Swindle, Nachtbraker and The Revenge, and you have an undeniably essential collection.