Review: During last year's numerous pandemic lockdowns, Theo Kottis found himself dreaming of sweaty, euphoric peak-time dancefloors. So much so, in fact, that he decided to join forces with "life and soul of the party" (his words) Busola and make something suitably excitable and anthemic. 'The Mirror' is undoubtedly a feelgood, party-hearty affair, with the pair peppering a bouncy, bass heavy old school house groove with spoken word snippets, MK style Korg M1 riffs, bold piano stabs and undulating analogue bass. Kottis solo cut 'Onda' is similarly cheery and carefree, with delay-laden piano riffs, gorgeous pads, jazzy Rhodes fills and stirring string samples rising above deeper bass and even crunchier, crisper drums.
Review: Amsterdam's DGTL returns with a fresh one here by UK tech house hero Theo Kottis, the latest artist on their esteemed roster. The Scottish DJ/producer and Sub Club (Glasgow) resident presents "Sun" which was inspired by a particular poolside set he played in Ibiza on a sunny afternoon. It is a glorious mix of classic house and trance motifs that are altogether geared for another summer of love. This is followed by the equally blissed-out euphoria of "Sprint" which is a more melodic and groove based affair, featuring an epic chord progression made for perfect drama on the dancefloor.
Donald's House - "Everything Is Fine" - (7:39) 127 BPM
Sedef Adasi - "Tender Trip" - (6:30) 130 BPM
Elliot Litrowski - "Spray" - (4:47) 130 BPM
Hammer & James Shinra - "Navigator" - (5:41) 126 BPM
Patrick Holland - "Doomer" - (7:08) 126 BPM
Review: Since 2006 Permanent Vacation has earned its reputation for releasing some of the best in contemporary house, electro, disco and leftfield music, showcased and celebrated most with their various artist compilations. As lockdown in some parts of the world begins to ease, maybe a sixth Permanent Vacation is in order, which this time introduces a fresh cast to the series with our ears drawn to the abstract dub, drum and rhythm tracks of Bawrut, and Cornelius Doctor & Tushen Rae in the tripped out "The Bukit Have Eyes". Smallville's main man in Paris Jacques Bon turns in a stair-sailing synth number of breezy, uplifting house in "Reverse Flight", with techier drums and club tracks coming from DJ Kuesse ("Tropicana Girl") and the au courant electro sounds of Eliott Litrowski's "Spray", and Sedef's Adasi's "Tender Trip" a highlight too.
Review: Global Underground's Nubreed series has a huge amount of kudos, having brought respected DJs like Lee Burridge, Steve Lawler and Danny Howells to attention during the early 00s with a series of iconic mixes. Although it was on hold for much of the second decade of this millennium, it has been successfully resurrected and now gives the same platform to Theo Kottis. In keeping with its usual format, this instalment sees the Beautiful Strangers boss explore a range of styles and sound across two mixes. Accordingly, his selection ranges from Gigi Masin's melodic piano composition, "Maja", to the Mountain People's sensuous deep house "La Onda", taking in some underground classics like DJ Assassin's garage/house hybrid "Face in the Crowd" as well as left of centre oddities like The Horn's "Villager". It's a fitting testament to the Nubreed aesthetic.
Review: Over the last few years, Theo Kottis has risen through the ranks thanks to singles and EPs on Anjunadeep, Moda Black and Last Night On Earth. Now he's struck out on his own, establishing the Beautiful Strangers imprint to release his music, and more specifically this seven-track mini-album. It's his most eclectic and diverse release to date, all told, gleefully dashing between breakbeat-driven acid-funk ("The Get Down"), musically rich fusions of house and classic disco (the quietly impressive "Reasons"), Brazilian disco-sampling heavy acid madness ("Acid Disco"), bass-heavy peak-time melodiousness ("Moonlight"), swirling big room goodness (the throbbing "Sky") and suitably dark and jagged deep house/acid fusion ("U Need Ti Keep It Simple"). Solid stuff all told.
Review: Ibiza institution Cafe Mambo needs little introduction. Starting as a sunset hangout, it soon became a perfect venue for the island's pre-parties and has developed an iconic status worldwide. It has served up thousands of sunsets since it first opened it's doors in 1994 and here's Sunset to Afterdark: an expertly crafted collection compiled by the team behind the successful Future Disco series and Needwant label. This one takes you from those unforgettable sunsets to, like the name suggests, the nighttime where things really heat up. If there is one essential soundtrack required this summer, this is it. Highlights not limited to: Zero 7's sublime drifter "Last Light", Dutch trio Kraak & Smaak's emotive and bittersweet little ditty "Stumble" (Blue Hotel Mix) through to the gorgeous remix of Tempelhof & Gigi Masin's "Blue 13" by Declasse main man Steve Coby. There's even a bit of slinky and uptempo tech house from hot UK duo Dusky. Comes with two continuous mixes for your convenience: Sunset and Afterdark, naturally.
Review: Theo Kottis from Edinburgh has appeared on a who's who of labels at present from Anjunadeep, Last Night On Earth and Get Physical to Saved, Sub Club and now Moda Black: who present this new hit "Misunderstood". With its euphoric pianos, rushy arpeggios and adrenalised rhythm section: this slinky tech house number ticks all the right boxes and is another hit track you can expect to be hearing a lot of this Summer. This Autumn he will join label mates Jaymo & Andy George on several tour dates. We're hoping they'll be bringing their unique dance floor energy to somewhere near you!
It Wasn't Meant To Be (And.Id Rave Nostalgia remix) - (6:41) 127 BPM
It Wasn't Meant To Be (And.Id Warehouse dub) - (6:34) 127 BPM
Review: Following recent outings on Anjunadeep and Last Night On Earth, Theo Kottis returns to Moda Black, the label on which he made his name. "It Wasn't Meant To Be", which features a trio of spine-tingling breakdowns, sees the Edinburgh-based producer effortlessly joining the dots between dreamy deep house and slicker, tech-tinged flavours. The latter influence comes to the fore on "Running Nowhere", where drifting chords and chiming melody lines snake their way around a shuffling, tech-house groove. The E.P also boasts a pair of fine remixes from Mobilee man And.Id. There's a chunky, low-slung, mind-altering "Rave Nostalgia" mix - complete with rush-inducing piano breakdown - and a pulsating, no-holds-barred "Acid Dub".
Theo Kottis & Wayne Tennant - "Sixth Degree" - (6:35) 123 BPM
Review: Theo Kottis continues to deliver his highly singular strain of deep house delight, except that this time he moves away from Moda Black to land on the excellent Last Night On Earth imprint. "If I Ever Feel Better" is inarguably in the 'deep' end of the house spectrum, but the artist's chords and progressive atmosphere land the tune onto more cinematic plains, something which can also be heard on the expansive voyage that is the tune "Her". "Sixth Degree" features Wayne Tennant on the vocals, the singer adding a deep and sensual wave of lyrics to to Kottis' moody yet radiant collections of sounds. House excursions for the DJ or the non-DJ.
Hot Since 82/Habischman - "Leave Me" (Dubfire Playa remix) - (11:08) 123 BPM
Jaymo & Andy George - "Revisited" (continuous DJ mix) - (58:13) 123 BPM
Review: Jaymo & Andy George have etched out an impressive 15 year career, with demand for their 'texture heavy' releases on many big labels seeing their success grow to a global scale. Here they present a mix on their own Moda Black imprint, and just shy of an hour it's a concise snapshot of them doing what they do best: delivering deep, engrossing, synth-rich grooves. Highlights include the brooding, doom-jack of "Ghost" by Zeke Africa, the beguiling synth cascades of "Ratasta" by Upercent and Javier OrduA+a, and all 11 minutes of Dubfire's remarkable, blissed-out techno-disco rework.