Review: Like their first official mix CD for Get Physical back in 2012, Catz 'N Dogz latest mix on Watergate - Watergate 22- sees the pair drop classic house music from DJ Garth, Mystic Bill and Todd Terry. But as this second sampler shows, it also sees them deliver their own interpretation of these sounds. "Blakkat", their collaboration with Yotam Avni, is a killer chord-heavy serving of 90s tech house, while on "Afterglow", the Polish duo delivers a tough tribal workout. The mood changes on "To Ma People", their collaboration with Reno Wurzbacher, where deep Detroit chords are mixed with a soulful vocal to create a truly memorable deep house sound.,
Review: This is the first in a series of two mini-compilations on Hotflush and is dedicated to Trevino, who died earlier this year. First up are German pair Glaskin, who drop the techy, stepping "Cosmic Dance Interlude", followed by Or:la with the deep but jacking "B.W.U.W". Ambivalent makes his Hotflush debut under his LA-4A guise to drop the jacking "How I Feel", with Terr's "Find A Way" occupying a relatively similar space. Label boss Scuba unleashes the noisy, primal techno of " Boulahrouz" under his SCB alias and Israeli producer Yotam Avni rounds off the first volume with the stripped back, minimal groove of "Baduk". This first instalment is a fitting tribute to the UK producer.
Review: Most labels and collectives are challenged to last a decade in electronic music's fleeting landscape, but so far Kompakt has endured for twice this lifespan. This is largely due to the fact that the Cologne operation boasts a tightly-knit group of artists who continue to release on its many labels. For the twentieth edition of the annual Total compilation series, many of those producers come correct; Robag Wruhme and founder Michael Mayer both deliver ponderous deep techno tracks, while Jurgen Paape goes even farther, veering into guitar-spangled melancholia on "Vox Acris". This introspective mood seeps through to more overt dance floor tracks, with Sascha Funke's eerie "Atze" and Voigt & Voigt's "Schopper Da Leu" delivering understated but impactful results.
Review: Just This celebrate their tenth anniversary with X, a compilation that skirts at the edges of ambient, techno and even pop. Those more mainstream elements are audible on Mind Against's epic remix of Blausch's "Brood" while on "Good Old Days", Woo York's thumping electronic groove also features pop vocals. There's a darker side to Just This' canon, and this comes through on Yotam Avni's brooding "Name Dropping" and the low-slung,frazzled groove of Extrawelt's "Ort Und Impuls (Alternate Version)". However, what really shines through are the dreamy techno grooves from Hunter/Game and Sterac's "Hypnotized", a powerful club track that combines firing percussion with seductive, Detroit techno-style bass.
Review: The label arm of the DGTL festival organisation comes good with a fine house compilation to soundtrack these uncertain times. The warbling bass and neat percussive undercurrents on Lovshai's "Solo" start the release in warm, ecstatic form, while FM Live recalls the glory days of 90s UK deep house with the sprawling "Tal Como Soy". The compilation takes a tranced out turn for Perdu's "The Light Within", where broken beats provide the basis for some atmospheric hooks, before Yotam Avni switches into techno-influenced mode for the rolling, drum-heavy workout that is "Jungle of the Mirror II". Peppered with dreamy synths and deep vocal samples, it shows that when it comes to modern house music, DGTL has few peers.
Review: Cologne powerhouse Kompakt have continually defined a unique aesthetic as label - deep, atmospheric and absolutely evocative. For the 19th edition of their revered Total series - The Voigt Brothers & Co. curate another splendid compilation featuring the very best in international electronic music from the last year, taking in a wide variety of styles, tempos moods and grooves - yet all with the label's distinct taste. Highlights (and there's many!) came courtesy of: local Gewolbe Club resident Jonathan Kaspar with the mesmerising dancefloor drama of "Renard", label co-founders Tobias Thomas & Michael mayer teaming up on the sexy lo-slung groove antics of "Total Anders", label staple and all round Berlin legend Sascha Funke delivers a typically quirky and oddball groove on "Aus Der Lamang". Elsewhere, you can get your tunnel vision on with the ever reliable Rex The Dog on "Vortex", the ascendant Anii from Poland takes you deep into the rainforest on the tribal trance of "Ride The Tiger" and ANNA from Brazil provides some dystopian narratives for the dancefloor on "Remembrance".
Review: The latest compilation from Scuba's label features some of dance music's most distinctive producers. Recondite delivers "Pour", a throbbing, spaced out groove that will leave listeners mesmerised. Locked Groove, another Hotflush regular, also focuses on the deeper end of techno with the hypnotic, flowing "From Beyond". The compilations also includes "If You Still Want Me", an evocative house cut from Yotam Anvi, where plaintive vocals unravel over a dubbed out groove, while Scuba himself impresses with the synth-heavy "Nineteen Eighty" and, working as SCB, drops the steely, stepping rhythm of "Five Degrees". Floor 2.1 is an essential release for anyone with even a passing interest in forward-facing techno and house.
Review: Well it is that time again: revered Berlin imprint Innervisions presents the 11th installment in the acclaimed Secret Weapons series, and as always does exactly what it says on the tin. Expect the very best in emotive house and melodic techno as curated by Ame and Dixon - who stated quite succinctly themselves as "to create vivid moments, be it after hours or peak-time.' Highlights coming courtesy of rising Spaniard Pablo Fierra on the folk-inflected/sunkissed vibe of "Tel Aviv To Casablanca", the return or veteran British producer Thomas Gandey (Cagedbaby) who teams up with Santiago Garcia on the spooky dancefloor drama of "On Two Strangers", Israel's Yotam Avni who continues his impressive run of tracks into 2019 on the utterly hypnotic "Regis Is For Regisford" while label staple Denis Horvat gets into some properly futuristic groove action with "Vetiver".
Review: Josh Wink's institution is back and giving us a massive forecast for the musical climate on The White Isle this summer and it looks like it's gonna be pretty hot! Sure enough most of this heat is coming from Ovum's current label roster and it's all good on Ovum Over Ibiza 2016. We're pretty sure that New Yorker by way of Los Angeles' MANIK's "Recourse" will be remembered beyond this year due to its slinky deepness, as will Nottingham's Dudley Strangeways with his tunnelling piece"'Keep It Clean". Delft boss Ambivalent also appears with the epic and melodic journey track "Phase Doubt" as does New York City legend Harry Romero, surprisingly, with the peak time techno monster "What What" which really packs a punch!
Review: What better way to celebrate a decade in business than by getting Chicago deep house legend Larry Heard to select and mix a double-disc compilation of label highlights? Hats off, then, to Rebirth, who managed to persuade Mr Fingers himself to deliver his first commercially available DJ mix. As you'd expect from both label and DJ, it's a wonderfully atmospheric and melodious affair, with Heard selecting and blending emotion-rich tracks and mixes from Chromatic Filters, Bocca Grande, NuFrequency, Tevo Howard, Motor City Drum Ensemble and James Teej. The first disc, in which Heard races through 28 tracks in just over 70 minutes, is particularly memorable.
Review: Chameleon-like producer Yotam Avni has seen his music over the years make it to a host of peak time labels like Stroboscopic Artefacts, Hotflush Recordings, Ovum and Innervisions. But never an album! Cologne institution Kompakt welcomed the Israeli artist into its fold with a single on the Kompakt sub-label Extra this year - following previous 'Speichers' from Robag Wruhme and Marc Romboy - with Kompakt's main imprint proudly presenting the Israeli artist's debut album, Was Here. Inspired to join the dots between jazz, Detroit techno and classical, find deep, watery and reflective numbers in "9th May", to bassline vocal tracks in "Just Another Day" (featuring DoP), and Riechian-piano influences in others like "Nature Of Dreams". Yotam Avni was 'ere, 2020.
Death In Goa (Markus Suckut remix) - (7:12) 127 BPM
Review: The latest release on Andre Kronert's Odd Even label has an unusual name, and it finds Avni covering a range of different styles. The macabre-titled "Death in Goa (Flight Mode)" is a serene ambient affair, while on an alternate version, simply called "Death in Goa", a chugging groove underpins Avni's hypnotic textures. Despite Goa begin the destination of choice for those who have finished their Israeli military service, this release eschews making an overt political statement and its strongest repercussions can be felt on the dance floor. Accordingly, "Oriental Jazz" is a robust stepper populated by repetitive vocal snatches, while Markus Suckut's take on "Death In Goa" is a deep but effective roller.
Review: Israeli producer Yotam Avni started out only a few years ago, making waves on esteemed tech house imprints such as the local Be As One and Californian deep house institution Seasons. Fast forward to now, he's affiliated with such tastemaker labels as Innervisions and Hotflush - a perfect fit for his new darker, tech-influenced sound. Venturing further down the spiral, his latest offering is for Stroboscopic Artefacts - and it is actually his third release on the Berlin based experimental techno imprint. It follows up his impressive contribution to their esteemed Monad series. The A side features the sweaty Carnival vibes of "Avka" (New Life) featuring intense latin polyrhythms assisted by adrenalising rave horns. The rhythms seem to be a recurring theme here, as "Dybbuk" proves, but this time it's a hybrid of steely machine drums thrown in the mix. Finally "Modern Matters" is the most straight head offering: its austere mechanical swagger supported by hypnotic, ethnic prayer chants - and to quite stunning effect.
Review: Thanks to recent releases on Hotflush and Stroboscopic Artefacts, Yotam Anvi is a producer on the rise. Here the Israeli DJ/producer makes his debut on Dixon and Ame's Innervisions imprints, suggesting his place in the big time is secured for some time to come. Perhaps the most impressive aspect of lead cut "Midas Touch" is the track's intoxicating late night atmosphere, a mood created via the use of drifting Middle Eastern vocal samples, psychedelic acid lines and a thrusting, low-slung tech-house groove. Anvi's Arabic influences once more come to the fore on "Jorniel", where exotic melodies and gentle acoustic guitar solos weave in and out of another bustling, bass-heavy rhythm track.