Review: Having made his Aus debut last year, restless producer Tom Demac makes his return to Will Saul's ever-dependable stable of talent with Linda's Theme. The title track is a raucous combination of raw, off-kilter drums and resonant 303 bass in the Gerry Read mould, characterised by its bold sample which sounds like it was ripped from a lost psychedelic 7" from the 1960s. "Vocoder's Revenge" is a little more what we'd expect from the producer, combining deep, sleazy sub bass and the titular vocoder which sounds like a codeine addled Daft Punk, while "Days with Poly" starts out as a stern tech house bumper before travelling into more emotive territory thanks to its soulful female vocal and warm pads. For peak time house fare, you'll find little better this month, that's for sure.
Review: Demac has been releasing music on high-profile labels like Aus, Drumcode and Hypercolour for the past decade. As Sink or Swim shows, this is because the UK producer is adept at creating highly distinctive electronic music. The title track is a case in point; it features skipping drums, lithe percussion and frosty melodies, but underpinning these elements is a brutal, oppressive bass. It's the contrast between these two elements that makes "Sink.." so impressive. On "Mayfield Road", Demac moves in a radically different direction. Gone are the straight kicks, replaced by razor-sharp 808s, spacey pads and the kind of futuristic undercurrent that Detroit producers normally lay claim to.
Review: Having spent the best part of a decade producing and releasing music at a furious rate, Tom Demac took a step back in 2015. Two years on, he returned earlier this year with Sink Or Swim, a two-track missive on regular home Hypercolour. Six months later, he's decided to repeat the exercise with Bark Or Bite. The title track, a typically Germanic chunk of loose late night techno that layers a hushed and hypnotic groove with spacey synthesizer motifs and effects-laden vocal hits, is particularly strong. That said, we're particularly enjoying the bustling, intergalactic electro vibes of "205 GTI", where fizzing electronics and yearning synth lines cluster around punchy drum machine hits and an elastic analogue bassline.
Review: Hypercolour staple Tom Demac returns to Koelsch institution Kompakt with his second offering, which follows up last year's terrific White Flowers EP which he released in conjunction with the outfit White Lies. On "Serenade", the Welshman shows he has what it takes to reconfigure the vitality of what emotive techno can be - a central force that has kept the beat of Kompakt's heart in rhythm since day one. From the shiny Sunday afternoon euphoria of there title track, he then goes dark on the tunnelling and hypnotic groove of "Seventh Sign" before returning back to the evocative and bittersweet vibes on the breakbeat driven epic "Second Skin".
Review: Welshman Tom Demac makes his debut for Cologne institution Kompakt and describes it as an honour. From his early days going to Sonar and attending the original Kompakt Records beach parties back in the mid-noughties - it's always been considered a dream to release with this legendary label he's stated. Presented here is a collaboration with the band Real Lies, who Demac has been in the studio with for the last few months, producing their album. 'White Flowers' was a special nugget that came from their studio sessions together. It's a melancholic and bittersweet journey with pop-inflections, which nails the labels aesthetic just perfectly. "Felix" is just as emotive, and fuelled by some late '90s style breaks beneath its tapestry of rich pads and vibrant synths.
Review: Frankfurt-based imprint Connaisseur drop the third annual Grand Cru compilation, bulging with goodies from the deeper end of tech and minimal house. Grand Cru - a term no doubt already known to the wine drinkers among you - refers to an elegant bottle or vineyard. And 2010 is proving to be a fine vintage; from the glitchy beat and ethereal vocals on Tom Demac's "Sky Swatches", to the meandering bassline of Franklin De Costa's "Futureboy" and "Jericho Horns" by label stalwart Afrilounge, which sounds like a wonderfully dirty afterhours version of Jesse Rose's "Touch My Horn". And be sure to check out "Black Martin", a rare foray into house music for drum & bass producer Dee Pulse.
Review: London/Bristol based tech house institution celebrates a decade in the business. They've seen a few faces and phases, tech-wise or otherwise but at the end of the day remained consistent in their pursuit of quality grooves. Alex Jones and Jamie Russell present some great music here and there are many highlights. From electronica legends such as Warp's Luke Vibert, minimal house pioneer Matthew Herbert (with the deep and dusty microhouse of "Downgraded") as well as techno's one time enfant terrible Neil Landstrumm through to new favourites such as Swedish hypnotic techno hero Sebastian Mullaert (the tunnelling "Shadowed By I"), Italian hardware mavericks The Analogue Cops plus up and comers Yaleesa Hall x Malin Genie with the banging' "Buchan Trap". We applaud the label for their ability to keep on the pulse of the ever changing electronic music landscape and heres to another ten years.
Review: Well, this is surely the most special treat this week and we're not surprised it's coming from the Hypercolour mandem. These guys have been on fire over the last three years, releasing everyone worth releasing and even having them remix themselves such as on this new compilation. You have all the big guns: Maya Jane Coles, Kris Wadsworth, Tom Demac, Mark Henning, and George Fitzgerald. But, the best part of it all is that they're rewired and revamped by none other than: Bonobo, Jimmy Edgar, FaltyDL, Mr G, KiNK, Deetron, Matthew Herbert and more! We don't need to go on about how big this is...just enjoy this festival lineup in whatever way pleases you best. BIG and RECOMMENDED.
Kerrier District - "Techno Disco" - (4:40) 112 BPM
Tom Demac - "Four Leaves Right" - (7:54) 120 BPM
Luke Vibert - "Stabs Of Regret" (FaltyDL remix) - (3:52) 95 BPM
Garnier - "Confused" - (10:38) 130 BPM
Lucretio - "Vampire Killer" - (6:22) 134 BPM
J. Wiltshire - "False Awakening" (Tuff City Kids remix) - (6:45) 128 BPM
Last Magpie - "Separation" - (9:09) 126 BPM
A Sagittariun - "Delta House" - (6:33) 107 BPM
Zoe Zoe & Enoah Ballard - "1234" - (5:41) 124 BPM
Losoul - "Time & Space" - (8:11) 122 BPM
Roberto Clementi - "Novism" - (5:56) 122 BPM
Review: London's Hypercolour crew have now become synonymous with quality house and techno, and although they are originally rooted in the UK strain of the genres, recent years have brought along a whole new heap of styles and talent on their catalogue. First up, we should give credit to Axel Boman and the ridiculously hummable tech-house groove that is "Depression 01", followed supremely by a hard-hitting house banger in the name of "Lynn" by the unstoppable Dense & Pika. Other choice cuts on here include Kevin McPhee's nasty "CC-XXX-YY-NNNNN", Jimmy Edgar's sexier-than-ever "Hush", Lucretio's smooth "Vampire Killer", and...of screw it, it's all pretty damn killer. HOT.