Let Me Love You (Mike Dunn Black Glitter dub) - (6:41) 126 BPM
Let Me Love You (Mike Dunn BlackBall Vox mix Xtra End) - (5:56) 125 BPM
Standing In Line (Godson Rick Wilhite Long edit) - (8:07) 126 BPM
Let Me Love You (Mike Dunn BlackBall Mental mix) - (5:56) 125 BPM
Let Me Love You (Mike Dunn Black Glitter Mental) - (6:41) 125 BPM
Review: First out in 2005, this track by Anane gets new mixes from Mike Dunn that tone down the exuberant Latin flourishes of the original, making for a smoother ride that will play well alongside the deep, soulful grooves flooding out of South Africa these days. The BlackBall Vox mix is the most faithful to the original version but if the vocal's a little syrupy-sweet for you then there are BlackBall Mental, Black Glitter Mental and Black Glitter Dub mixes to choose from. Completing the package is Detroit veteran Rick 'The Godson' Wilhite's piano-looping remix of 'Standing In Line' from 2010's 'Ananesworld' album.
Review: Robsoul boss Phil Weeks has been expanding the label's already bulging roster. On this "future focused" sampler EP, he introduces us to three of his most recent signings. Up first is sometime Snatch, Superfiction and Monique producer Blind Minded, who wraps woozy, heavily filtered disco-boogie samples around a tough, chunky and peak-time ready house beat on 'Punk Funk'. Clockbeats man Federico Baracco ops for a more bass-heavy, organ-heavy vibe on thrusting EP highlight 'How I Feel', before virtual unknown Fairshore delivers a delightful slab of spacey deep house bliss with a light UKG twist.
Review: Running since 2016, London's Strictly Flava imprint describe their musical remit simply as "underground house and garage". That description sounds almost quaint as 2021 looms, but it's also a good clue as the trad-style vibes served up herein by the mysterious Blo. 'Clouds' is a late-night deep house groover par excellence, all warm bass and lingering pads with occasional cheeky, voicebox-like synth doodles on top, while the equally sumptuous 'Groovin' leans more towards classic deep New Jersey garage - in fact, we'd go so far as to say that if you'd spun this at +6 at the Frog & Nightgown, no-one would have batted an eyelid!
Review: Deetron follows last year's Body Electric release on Running Back with a fine dance floor-based EP inspired by his formidable DJing. "Ego Rave B" is a seductive, bubbling electronic groove that supports woozy, cosmic synths, while on "Ego Rave D" and its "D1" variant, he goes down a tracky route, with dense drums and snappy percussion providing the basis for old school techno bleeps. There are also remnants of the Swiss DJ's more peak time selections: "Ego Rave A", sees Deetron fuse tranced out hooks with gentle piano keys, while "Ego Rave C" is a wide-eyed, good time electro-techno track.
Review: Here's something to cheer you up on miserable winter lockdown nights: a fresh suite of remixes of DJ Spen's lusciously luxurious soulful house collaboration with Cornell CC Carter, 'Keep Your Head to the Sky', courtesy of Emmanuel Kossi AKA Manoo. The long-serving French producer returns to the 'Old Skool' for three of his rubs, offering up a mixture of warm, jazzy bass guitar, snappy machine drums, sustained synth-strings, and some seriously summery piano stabs. We'd recommend checking both the stripped-back, synth solo-laden 'Old Skool Dub' and the killer 'Extended Old Skool Remix'. Elsewhere, his 'Afro Remix' is a deliciously positive blend of Afro-house grooves and soulful house flavours, while Spen and Carter's original extended mix is as musically rich and life-affirming as ever.
Review: Following up his debut album which was released earlier this year, Warsaw-based producer Bartoz Kruczynski - better known as Earth Trax - presents his second album titled, naturally, 'LP2' on Shall Not Fade. The 15 tracks served up here are warmer and more soothing than on his last outing, but at the same time more dance oriented. From the evocative Motor City style tones of ambient house epic "After The Rain", the life-affirming slo-mo acid of "The Complete Trance Induction" and going out all guns blazing onb the end with the thunderous old school techno of "Dark River" calling to mind classic Laurent Garnier. Featured on this digital edition are four bonus remixes for you to enjoy.
Felix Da Housecat & Rocketmann - "His Word" - (4:32) 118 BPM
Review: Chicago legend Felix Da Housecat drafts in a couple of friends for a two-tracker on his own Founders Of Filth. On the title track Felix goes right back to his roots and revisits that mid-90s Relief vibe, as he tops off a simple filtered disco loop with a single synth note that plays throughout, snatches of multiple heavily treated (or computer-generated) spoken male and female vocals and, later on, a mournful synth-violin line. File under "eyes down, motorik and trippy as all hell"! The accompanying 'His Word' is an even quirkier cut that comes on like Hot Chip channelling Syd Barrett.
Review: Following this year's release of Pacific Coliseum's third LP, How's Life, Slim Steve's label debut with the I Do It EP and two Westcoast Goddess titles, Let's Play House caps of a fine year for the empty dancefloors out there with Jacque'd Toolbox - a super combi between 'the' Gerd Janson and New York's Jacques Renault! Throwing into the mix all matter of edits and cutting techniques to disco, pop, electro and house music, the pair throw down hard when giving the free world a dose of what the really want; be it the stringed, pumping heaviness of a piano-ladened "Never Saw Never" or the rave-infused happy house of "Movin' Kinda Screwy". Find some '80s breakbeat electro in the shoulder pad pop of "One More Slice" next to the space pongs and filter loop tropics of "One More Slam" and percussive disco banger of "Jus Wanna Party". Disco, check!
Hot Since 82 & Temple - "Nightfall" - (8:06) 123 BPM
Eye Of The Storm (feat Liz Cass) - (4:10) 120 BPM
Naboo (feat Miss Kittin) - (5:13) 121 BPM
Rules - (6:46) 123 BPM
Body Control (feat Jamie Jones & Boy George) - (3:40) 124 BPM
Hide - (6:06) 123 BPM
Loverdose (feat Liz Cass) - (4:53) 118 BPM
Hot Since 82 & Rudimental - "Be Strong" - (5:55) 125 BPM
Sinnerman (feat Ed Graves) - (4:33) 120 BPM
Barefoot - (6:59) 124 BPM
Mesmerize - (7:02) 123 BPM
Want You - (6:10) 126 BPM
Black & White (feat Temple) - (5:28) 123 BPM
Nightfall (dub) - (7:48) 123 BPM
Review: While dancefloors have largely stood still throughout 2020, it hasn't made much of a dent in Knee Deep In Sound's musical output this year. Label head Hot Since 82 - better known as Daley Padley - takes care of their latest sonic dispatch on his sophomore long player. While last year's '8-Track' was dedicated to the passing of a close friend, the recording of 'Recovery' was a similarly cathartic process, with Padley describing the process as a therapeutic experience that enabled a more positive headspace. From the deep and slinky mood music of "Eye Of The Storm" featuring the sensual vocals of Liz Cass, to some surprisingly wonderful collaborations: "Body Control" features fellow UK tech house royalty Jamie Jones and the legendary Boy George on the mic reminiscing on the scene's good ol' days, while acclaimed outfit Rudimental support Padley on the aci-washed deepness of "Be Strong".
Review: While much of Huxley's material over the last few years has been bold, tech-tinged and druggy, this first appearance on Shall Not Fade is pleasingly celebratory and rooted in classic US house. For proof, check bouncy, bass-heavy opener 'Takeaway', where spine-tingling piano riffs, synth-sax and old school vocal samples catch the ear, and the rushing piano-house largeness of future hands-in-the-air anthem 'Patsy'. In between, he offers up a mix of dark, muscular house (see the Tenaglia-at-Twilo era pump of 'Nothing Works', which features some suitably mind-mangling acid lines) and druggy, early morning intensity ('A Hard Fall Up To The Middle', 'Anxiety').
Review: Although he's served up a string of inspired EPs over the last few years, Jesse Bru has actively steered clear of the album format. Here the Vancouver-based producer finally relents, delivering an expansive full-length excursion that deftly showcases the breadth and diversity of his now-established trademark sound. Opening and closing with deliciously loved-up blasts of humid ambient bliss, The Coast sees Bru flit between sturdy, almost techno-tempo deep house warmers, loose-limbed breakbeat dreaminess, sample-heavy mutations of breakbeat hardcore and boogie (see 'Life's Alright'), saucer-eyed soundscape electro (the immaculate 'Summer Rain'), dream house, more bumpin' club excursions and, perhaps most surprisingly, smooth and jazzy drum & bass ('Cmwtme'). The result is a highly entertaining set capable of raising more than a few smiles in this most difficult of years.
Review: Legend of the scene Joris Voorn brings a fourth instalment to the remix series taking on his 2019 album Four. With the likes of Orbital and J Majik contributing to previous editions, version four sees German duo Monkey Safari - who released the Safe single on Spectrum earlier this year - relive the breathy and melodic tones of "Ryo" in a sweetly deep, instrumental and housey remix of refined production prowess. Next to that is a more bassline influenced, aparegio driven and trance pumping remake of "Dark" by Steyoyoke boss Soul Button. Four to the floor you can be sure.
Review: Last year, Kapote joined forces with regular home Toy Tonics to release Teutonik Disaster, a compilation of his own re-edits of late '70s and early '80s, "German new wave funk". 12 months on he returns to the same label with a new collection, Mushroom House, which boasts a mixture of Balearic, Afro and cosmic-influenced cuts from the imprint's vaults. Highlights come thick and fast throughout, from the rubbery, dubbed-out Afro-house bounce of Ponty Mython's 'Slippin' Into Darkness' and the dusty Afro-disco haziness of Munk's 'Nigerian Jam', to the intergalactic electro trip of the Asphodells' killer remix of 'The Circular Path' by the Deadstock 33s, and the deep space Italo-disco chug of Baldelli's sparkling 'Phobos (2020 Version)'.
Freedom (Never Let You Go) (feat Mella Dee remix) - (3:57) 136 BPM
Freedom (Never Let You Go) (extended mix) - (6:54) 126 BPM
Review: After a hiatus to produce and write for the likes of Aquilo, Octavian and Rudimental, Derbyshire's super producer Sam Knowles returns with his first new music under the Karma Kid moniker in two years. He channels the glory days of late '90s funky house on the anthemic feel good vibe of "Freedom" (Never Let You Go) with its breathtaking brass section and roaring diva vocals that's sure to set the dancefloor on fire. This is followed by a killer remix by South Yorkshire's man of the moment Mella Dee (Warehouse Music) taking the track down a loved-up and energetic rave route, and another original track in the form of the sun kissed and dubbed-out deepness of "Can I Play".
Review: Strahil Velchev AKA KiNK has successfully done his own thing this year, eschewing the advances of long-established labels in order to release music on the Sofia imprint he co-founded in 2019. Toplo is the third and final instalment in a trilogy of EPs he kicked off with Nagore way back in January. It's a suitably varied, analogue-rich affair, with the long-serving artist flitting between fuzzy, driving heaviness (see the star fall synth sounds and booming, metronomic bass of '101 Reasons'), sub-heavy, post-dubstep seduction (the hard-to-pigeonhole 'Set The M'ood Right'), and angular and atmospheric up-tempo deep house (the startlingly evocative 'Dreamer'). Noted house eccentric Frits Wentink is given the task of remixing 'Dreamer', resulting in a jaunty and quirky re-wire full of oddball sample edits, jumpy stabs and swinging beats.
Review: Following inspired outings on D.KO, Let's Play House and Flux, Robin Lazore returns to RTCT Records after a three-year absence. The Bordeaux-born producer is in formidable - and we'd argue, surprisingly forthright - form from the off, tweaking his TB-303 mercilessly on the early '90s stadium house-goes-Chicago jack intensity of 'Amusez-Vous Bordel' before adding angular acid lines and razor-sharp hardcore stabs to a bouncy electro beat on 'Trust Yourself (Rave Mix)'. Elsewhere, 'Final Battle' is string-laden disco-house on steroids, Enfant Lune Sous Acid' is a bouncy slab of disco-house positive with added acid attacks, and 'Song For My Next Girlfriend' is a gorgeous instrumental hip-hop head-nodder that's as positive as a surprise tax rebate.
If We Were Children Again (Mak?z rework) - (9:28) 123 BPM
More Visions - (7:21) 116 BPM
Review: Back in February, Makez made the move from Heist Recordings to Let's Play House, bringing with him the Elevation EP, which we dubbed his "strongest EP to date". This timely follow-up for the Brooklyn-based imprint is equally strong. He begins by combining gently tropical drums, kaleidoscopic synths and languid melodic refrains on mid-tempo number 'Blue Island', before upping the tempo and reaching for rubbery disco bass on the equally picturesque 'Red Island'. Title track 'Levitation' is a glorious chunk of Afro-funk/deep house fusion, 'More Vision' is a dense and hallucinatory slab of feverish house hypnotism, and 'If We Were Children (Makez Rework)' is a bouncy disco-house number full of cut-glass strings and jammed-out electric piano riffs.
Review: We've been impressed by Maxi Degrassi's output this year, which has included melodious, must-check EPs for Sag & Tre and Melody of the Soul. Pleasingly, the Argentine producer appears to have stepped it up another notch on this fine four-tracker, which marks his debut on All Day I Dream. He begins by adding South American percussion, chiming lead lines, ethereal female vocal samples and spacey synth sounds to a chunky beat on 'The Love Goes First', before reaching for the pianos on the deeper, warmer and hazier dancefloor bliss pf 'String of Feelings'. 'About Energies' is a smooth, string-drenched treat, while closing cut 'Keep Moving' is dreamy, tactile and wonderfully hypnotic. Undeniably one of All Day I Dream's best EPs of the year - and that's saying something.
Review: Murder He Wrote, Chrystal, Rhythm Athletic? What more could you want from a new school UK funky release?! What a fabulous link up we find ourselves exploring with this one as MHW returns once again to his home imprint to deliver a potent two track experiment by the name of 'Too Late'. Part one sees him deploy a vast array of colourful percussive lines and softened melody, over which Chrystal's heavenly vocal layers sit just perfectly. On the flip side, Part two sees a much more underground sound deployed as shimmering chord notes are left to drift into an icy soundscape atop glittering rhythms and more of Chrystal's chilling vocals. Amazing work as per from one of the most consistent producers out there right now!
Review: Acid house evangelists Posthuman rarely put a foot wrong, so it's no surprise to find that their latest EP is full to bursting with high quality. Interestingly, there's no sign of their trademark TB-303 acid lines on lead cut 'You're Mine'; instead, they've opted to pepper a sturdy drum pattern with retro-futurist organ stabs, glassy-eyed vocal samples and, as the track progresses, gargantuan sub-bass and sweaty breakbeats. The accompanying remix is package is strong too, with Luke Vibert predictably stealing the show with a tooled-up, rave-igniting take smothered in a variety of familiar old school vocal samples. We'd also suggest checking dense and chunky bonus cut '(Find Me) On The Edge of Town', a sweaty slab of future acid jack with oodles of energy.
Review: With a 30-plus-year career, Rick Wade's name is spoken in reverent tones in deep house circles, thanks mostly to the output of his Harmonie Park label. For the past decade or so, he's found a regular home at Japanese label Unknown Season, and this 'best of' is really an omnibus that brings together the various EPs he's made for them, rather than a definitive, career-spanning anthology. There's still much to enjoy, though, from the fluttery, uplifting Latin-jazz-soul of 'Shinjuku Strut' to the eyes-wide-shut 4am dancefloor throb of 'Angry Orchestra', the soulful house shuffle of 'Gotta Have Jazz' and the lounge-y 70s funk nostalgia of 'After Dark'.
Planet Deep (Vintage Future Planet D-Mix) - (6:18) 125 BPM
Academy (Pezzner remix) - (7:31) 120 BPM
Review: Michigan born Rick Wade finds himself getting remixed on Belgium's Elypsia with each getting more gritty and cosmic minded than you might expect from the deep house stalwart himself. Tresilo certainly grits his teeth for the pixelated melodic workout that is the opener, while things get more smooth and cuddly with American producer David Pezzner at the buttons. The Vintage Future Planet D mix is a thing of meditative beauty ad last of all Pezzner reappears with a second fine remix.
Tomorrow Comes Today (feat Quails) - (5:53) 109 BPM
Arrival - (6:27) 127 BPM
This Far - (6:14) 126 BPM
Review: Fittingly, Szilveszter Horvath's long-awaited debut album as Route 8 was directly inspired by the Hungarian highway after which his artistic alias is named. It's one he has travelled many times over the years, hence his desire to create an album of "cruising music" that would sound good on journeys down the motorway. In practice, that means a fine musical excursion that blends warming deep house and futuristic Motor City techno sounds with elements of blissful ambient techno (see inspired opener 'Departure' and 'Arrival'), deep acid electro ('Nowhere', snappy closing cut 'This Far'), Pete Namlook style weightless ambient ('Interlude'), two-step ('4th Journey') and near horizontal synth-pop ('Tomorrow Comes Today'). The results are certainly ear-pleasing and rarely less than superb.
Review: Questioned in the past for their flavour-of-the-month-attitudes to house and techno, Lobster Theremin has come through the other side as a bastion for what's good about contemporary US and UK inspired dance music (with that lo-fidelity touch). Always on the hunt for fresh artists mining such a sound, the label gives Saturday Night Rush (also known as Truant) a full debut with a four-track EP covering an expansive spectrum of classic house sounds tied together with a bevy UK influences; be they bass-driven breaks, piano stabs for the rave to slicing garage percussion, raw drums and luscious synths. Lose yourself to the bass wobble of "Relief", uptempo deep house, trance and UKG of "Unite" next to the dub noir of "Dance Wicked" and a Chicago house overload in "Real Headz". Hot rush.
Review: Since deciding to pack in his day job to follow his music production dreams last year, Tee Mango has released some of his most impressive, interesting and well-produced music to date. This fine run of form continues via a Permanent Vacation label debut that's notable for both its variety and quality. He begins by reaching for woozy electric piano chords, tech-tinged deep house beats, twinkling lead lines and colourful synth flourishes on the rather relaxed and beautiful 'Don't Let Slip', before offering up some organ-heavy house retro-futurism via 'She Never Looked Back'. Arguably best of all though is 'What You Want', a tactile and occasionally fuzzy affair rich in undulating synth-bass, snaking sax solos, memorable organ stabs and his own high-register vocals.
Review: While it may have been designed to reflect the evolving nature of the label's sound over the last half-decade, Shall Not Fade's fifth anniversary compilation is nevertheless packed to the rafters with previously unheard treats. It begins with a techno-tempo blast of garage-influenced deep house warmth from DJOKO and ends with the dark, squelching and ghostly bounce of Dart's 'Transformations'; in between, you'll find 19 more reasons to be cheerful with plenty of serious dancefloor chops. Undisputed highlights include the crunchy, head-nodding pleasure of GVRL's instrumental hip-hop jam 'Love Game', the angular and acid spiked tech-breaks of Harrison BDP's 'The Powerful Play', the drowsy deep house dreaminess of Mutual Attraction's 'MPC Live Track 1' and the rushing rave revivalism of Baltra's killer re-fix of Earth Boys' 'I'm Not Afraid'.
Synk - "Lykkemaskin" (Prins Thomas mix) - (4:58) 131 BPM
Review: Prins Thomas's Full Pupp reached their 15th birthday in 2020, an event they've been celebrating all year via a series of five EPs. Now, all five get conveniently bundled together in album for the benefit of anyone who hasn't been paying attention! The album's 23 tracks span a fair range of musical ground, from straight-up deep house (see Marius Vareid's 'Acidus') and shimmering nu-disco (Pandreas's 'N.M.') to leffield electronica (DJ Fett Birger's 'Blot Fis | Hvite Linbukser', floaty prog (JaddaJaddaPlay's 'Flagrende Gevanter') and haunting cosmic/Italo disco (Tarje & Are's 'For Rubicon'), making for an enjoyable and varied listen.