Review: Over the past 15 years, Paul Ritch has released music on some of techno's most respected labels, including Drumcode, 100% Pure and SCI + TEC. So it makes sense that he has hooked up with Developer's Modularz. In keeping with the imprint's style, "Nuit Blanche" is a looped, chord heavy affair, while on "Insomnie", Ritch opts for a similar approach, albeit this time with broken beats supporting the steely percussion. "Revelation" sees him deliver a straighter dance floor track, thanks to the use of monstrous kicks, while he keeps the audience guessing with the abstract, layered piece of electronica that is "Rixe".
Review: Possibly inspired by their summer season in Ibiza, this latest Cocoon collection is noticeably breezier and more melody-driven than previous outings. Sure, the shuffling beats and floor-friendly rhythms remain, but there's far more emphasis on quiet beauty. Take Of Us and Visionquest's opener "Equillibrio" sets the tone, delivering soft-focus chords and touchy-feely beauty. The first half of the collection largely follows suit, before Christian Smith, Guy J and Mark Reeve up the tempo, beefing up the drums and dropping in rave-friendly elements in true techno style. It's pretty much what you'd expect - bar the mad, stomping jazz-house of Adam Port's "Black Noise" - but the quality threshold is high. Cocoon will get few complaints from DJs.
Review: With Ibiza's extended summer season almost upon us, Toolroom has served up a suitably epic collection of cuts that it expects to be big on the White Isle this summer. Label boss Mark Knight has provided a trio of DJ mixes ("Poolside", "Club" and "Afterclub") and the unmixed tracks included all fit into these loose categories. There's not enough room to list all of the highlights, but we've been enjoying the funk-fuelled disco-house rush of Illyus and Barrientos' "The One", the sleazy, bass-heavy bounce of Max Chapman's "Steppa", the acid-powered tech-house-jack of Del-30's "Gravity" and the weighty, mind-altering thump of "Low End Theory" by Eli Brown.
Review: It must be challenging for a long-running label to come up with fresh ideas, but that is exactly what Planet Rhythm has achieved on its latest compilation. TWCOR's "How It Ends" revisits the glory days of Frankfurt Trax techno with its pounding kicks, Vinicius Honorio maps out a new direction for big room techno on the thundering filters and wild rave stabs of "Time & Space" and Two Sided Agency's "Controlled Cycle" is a synapse-melting acid track. There is also a more considered side to Planet Rhythm, and it's audible here on Tom Hades' "Felis", where the veteran producer pairs emotive synths with a rolling tribal groove.