Review: Despite operating out of the messiest studio in England, bear-like Sheffield resident Bozzwell produces slick, melancholic and occasionally sublime techno-pop with a distinct dancefloor edge. Having previously released on Crosstown Revels and Kompakt, here he pops up on Clouded Vision with a typically glossy chunk of deep introspection. As usual, "Ambition" doesn't fit into any neat category, though it blends his shimmering synth-pop urges with a musical blend of techno, deep house and forward-thinking nu-disco. Remix-wise, there's a great version from My Robot Friend, a bubbling IDM re-think from Semtek and a haunting interpretation from Maxime Iko.
Review: Although still finding their feet as producers, French duo Darabi can count Ivan Smagghe, Joakim, Ewan Pearson and Michael Mayer amongst their admirers. "Truckin" is their second single and further enhances their credentials as sharp house/disco/pop fusionists. The title track is oddly alluring. While little more than some excellently lazy midtempo disco drums, a few nagging synths and a pseudo-Arabian melody, it's impeccably constructed and charmingly hooky. What really makes the package, though, is the remixes. There are must-check rubs from Krikor (druggy space rave), Bozzwell (slick techno-pop), the Love Supreme (deep marimba disco) and Clouded Vision (acid house meets blue-eyed soul).
Review: If there's one trend that's commandeered the cooler dance floors in recent times, it's the slowing down of the BPMs. Where once electro-house and similar scenes were all bouncing around to 130bpm electronic disco blinders, everything has slowed right down. Matt Walsh has embraced this trend with his Clouded Vision label and here's he's snapped up Spanish outfit Gameboyz. These three tracks make up in attitude what they lack in speed with the bleepy, floaty grind of "Bad Chemical" giving way to the arpeggiated acid of "Wir Sidn Drei" and the raunchy body music grind of "Loco Kilombo".
Review: York-based Tecwaa, a relative newcomer to the scene having made his production debut late last year, comes with five tracks that defy easy categorisation. 'Always & The End' is one-part noir soundtrack to one-part gypsy jazz and one-part stoned psychedelia, 'Night Moves' is essentially an ambient piece but underpinned by 80s-sounding drum (machine) beats, 'Remember The Clear Light' veers towards melodic techno and 'In Shallows' is dark, dusty and almost trip-hop in feel, while a slightly more uptempo remix of 'Always & The End' from Matt Walsh completes a package that's definitely something of a musical oddity, but well worth exploring.
Review: Clouded Vision boss Matt Walsh's first mix CD, The Clouded Vision Experiment, gained plenty of praise on its 2012 release. Three years on, he's finally got round to putting together a follow-up. As with its predecessor, The Clouded Vision Experiment Level 2 aims to join the dots between bouncy, electro-influenced techno, warehouse-friendly tech-house, glistening nu-disco (see the Eskimo Twins' "Elegy") and hard-to-define, dancefloor-friendly electronica (Richard Norris's "Dim The Lights" being a great example). The unmixed portion of the collection is full of gems, including tracks and remixes from The Hacker, Pulp Disco & The Outcasts (whose P-funk goes-acid banger "3.142" stands out) and the brilliantly named Forty Fingers Dynamo.
Review: London's Matt Walsh brings us the goods again with "Shake The Mind" on his own Clouded Vision imprint, an adrenalised peak time journey with a soaring acid lead and all round infectious groove. The radio mix emphasises the snarling and buzzing synth arpeggio but retains said acid sensibilities with those intermittent vocals of a sinister, drugged out kind. Man of the moment Daniel Avery steps in and delivers a killer remix showing off his newly developed hypnotic techno style, as seen on his recent Rote project with Volte-Face; and it's truly wicked!