Review: Josh Baker has proven himself adept at crafting the sort of tracks that manage to stand out from the crowd and that's exactly what he does here with a new EP on Burnski's always excellent Constant Black label. Title track 'Sometimes Cap' kicks off and is a loose but driving cut with snares flapping away over lovely drum funk. 'Some Of That' gets its head down and heads on into the night with eerie pads and acid gurgles next to paranoid vocal mutterings. 'Repeat Business' then gets buys on more tight drum programming and fresh sound design and last of all, 'Chesire Badger' picks up the pace with a spooky cosmic vibe.
Review: Constant Black knocks it out of the park once more here with more of that tasteful dancefloor dynamite. This one is a tasty split between Pascal Benjamin and Daniel Akbar. The former goes first with the deeply stylish minimal number that is 'On The Wing' with its bumping drums and goes bass get you in the vibe right off the bat. Next comes 'Twofold', a minimal house cut that is tightly coiled and damn infectious. Next you're treated to the brilliant brace of gems from Akbar. First is 'Another Chance' with has an effortlessly breezy feel with warm chord smears and then 'Groove' closes down with balmy pads swirling round a loose rhythm that you won't want to end.
Review: Burnski's Constant Black keeps on serving up the heat with a new one from Michael James, who is something of a label regular by now. He kicks off here with 'Remember' featuring a rather iconic vocal sample that cannot fail to get crowds going. It's well worked over an infectious house beat with warming bass. 'Tequila' is another kinetic cut, this time with skewed synth lines and prickly percussion that is raw and tech-edged. Closing out this classy but party-starting EP is 'Remember Me' (version 2) which is a real pumper with twisted acid lines and a killer groove that is catchy as Covid. Another vital drop from this label, as always.
Review: It's still hard to keep up with all of Burnski's many different labels, but we're not complaining. This one, Constant Black, mixes up things with a tech and minimal twist and next to do so is Daniel Akbar. 'What' soon wins you over with its kinetic and infectious drum programming and smart samples - a phased vocal and a twisted synth lead. 'Retreat' gets more physical - the drums bang with an old-school flavour and hint of tribalism. 'Listen' is a big fat tech roller with low slung bass and 'This One' rounds out with some brilliant drum, hits and brain-frying bass sounds. Pow pow, what an EP.
Review: Constant Black is one of the numerous labels in UK artist Burnski's orbit. He's been a man on form on all fronts in recent years and here he snaps up Retrospect for a trio of super slick and funky minimal house cuts. 'Ay-up!' is a cheeky opener with subtle northern welcomes hidden in the mix as the lithe bass and 2-step tinged drums do their thang. It's reet good. 'Schneebly' gets more pacey and balmy, with silky and oily bass and kinetic drum work all underpinned by a sick bass tone. Last of all comes '4 U' which has something of an upright garage skip and downright irresistible groove. These are high functioning, charismatic cuts to pump up any floor.
Review: No-one never quite knows which side of the deep/minimal house divide the latest on Constant Black is going to fall. The one thing you can be sure of, however, is that both sets of fans will find plenty to love in this sweaty, trippy, stealthy cauldron of house beats. We're offered four slices of the Sota sound, and they're quite the quality set, the wonderful 'Lafayette' bringing the jacking glory days of Ferox to mind, while 'At Least 10 Words' has a tactile feel to it that puts it up there with the raw tech of Transmat or other early Detroit. Simply reeks of quality.
Review: Ever-prolific Swedish minimal producer Per Hammar returns to Burnski's Constant stable with a surefooted EP showing off some of his freshest dancefloor approaches. 'Wrapper' keeps the groove dense and simmering, peppered with bleeps and dubby impulses, while 'Collapse' takes a more floaty direction with playful melodic flourishes darting around the pervading deepness of the rhythm section. 'TV 1000' locks into the tightest of funks, firing off a wandering bassline to get bodies wriggling with delight.
Review: Constant Black is one of the many labels run by the prolific Brit Burnksi aka Instinct aka Constant Sound. Here he signs up Niko Maxen for four deeper house cuts that are designed for small and intimate spaces. There is a trippy sense of melody to 'Denali' that soon has you enchanted as the rubbery drums bounce below. 'Logan' is built on another bulbous fusion of rubbery kicks and gooey bass that is stripped back but characterful. Things head into rather spooky worlds on 'Jaya' with its mysterious leads and swirling pads, then 'Elbrus' rounds out on a slick minimal house vibe that is perfect for the wonky after hours.
Review: Silat Beksi has been busy. Mate is a fluid, off-kilter and sonically detailed affair, with manipulated jazz samples, oddball spoken word snippets and pots-and-pans percussion mingling with outer-space tech-house grooves, bouncy deep house rhythms, the eccentric stereo panning of Ricardo Villalobos and the locked-in hypnotism of Eastern European minimal techno. It's a sonic palette that guarantees thrills throughout, with Beksi doing a brilliant job of showcasing his distinctive production style.
Review: Having impressed with his 2019 debut album on Negentropy, the breaks/tech-house/minimal techno fusion of Rhythm Tension, Zweizig has been given a chance to showcase his wares on Constant Sound's popular Constant Black offshoot. The headline attraction is undoubtedly opener 'Manipulate Our Reflections', a spaced-out chunk of hypnotic late-night science that wraps wonky, Villalobos style electronic noises and pulsing pads around a locked in (but also surprisingly swinging) tech-house groove. Relic provides a chunkier and groovier remix that boasts darker noises and a more beefed-up sound, while bonus cut 'Vvoid' is a twisted, undulating acid-jacker.
Review: Constant Sound's vital Constant Black offshoot welcomes Nike Maxen for a fine debut that comes after the artist has impressed already in 2020 with EPs on Mellow, Talman and Honne Music. The sounds on offer are classy and heady, with opener 'Dogwood' pairing dreamy pads and sparse percussion with a nice rolling and dubby beat. 'Laurel' picks up the pace but remains supremely smooth, and 'Willow' again gets you even more upright with its punchy kicks, but the languid pads keep things deep. Closer 'Whitebeam' is an icy cool tech house number with heady loops and superb bass warmth. This is another functional but characterful offering from this label.
Review: Malaga's Cuartero is next up on Constant Black, bringing a finely honed minimal house sound that fits into the label's shadowy club aesthetic perfectly. "Rame" is a driving, insistent slice of stripped down house with plenty of subtle wriggles and textures gurgling away under the surface. "Melkor" has some tougher drums, not least around the low end, but the same economy of sonics is applied here where the beat takes the lead and the FX skirt and skitter around the beat. "Caterpillar" has a tougher, less swung accent to its beats, but the chunky drum machine patterns are still executed with that stern focus that makes a minimal track pop off in the mix.
Review: Burnski and Michael James ignited their Relic collaboration last year with a classy drop on oge, and they're back again on Constant Black with some devastatingly bumping minimal tech house. There's a hi-tech finish to this whole EP, from the moody lead cut "D" to the slippery, funkified "E". The mix is clean as a whistle and maximized for every little production wriggle and shapely bassline to cut through on any system, even in the hazier clouds of pad hovering over "F". Don't skip over the last track though - as with all the best EPs there's gold to be savoured in the crafty machine shuffle and rubbery b-line of "G".
Review: Constant Black continue to bring you the finest in minimal tech house from underground operators and upfront scene leaders alike. This time around they're welcoming back the ever-prolific Noha, who first inaugurated the label back in 2016 with "Hamal" This time around he's debuting the ISKRA alias, which comprises more of the keenly sculpted, propulsive but healthily unusual brand of minimal house he's been known for, but with an added emphasis on interesting rhythmic formations. "Every Day I Spend With You" is especially delightful on the ears, while "Escape The Sleep" should appeal to those seeking pure, unadulterated, deep grooves.
Review: The next airdrop from the good ship Constant Black is a Various Artists affair with four tracks from four artists guaranteed to find a home in your extended micro sesh. Pascal Benjamin takes the lead with "Falkhill", locking into a Romanian-flavoured minimal breaks formation that rolls in resplendent fashion with a particularly choice vocal lick from an undisclosed RnB track. Michael James and Benjamin Joseph nudge the pitch fader up and dial in the swing for the decidedly funky wiggler "The Island", and TIJN keeps things bumping but works in some sharper drum sounds for the tough but bouncy "Maybe". Nick Beringer finishes off the EP with the chunky funk of "Nyx", calling to mind Mike Shannon amongst others.
Review: The latest joint on Constant Black is from Subb-an and Thoma Bulwer, who work together to bring forth some seriously smart ruminations on minimal techno with an inventive modern edge. "Apollo Sun" holds court with an artful, modulating synth voice that sounds as though it could well have been cooked up through a tangled network of patch leads. Elsewhere "Cosmic Breaks" has a strong set of drums that crunch in all the right places, and plenty of dreamy seasoning to make for a truly smart midtempo roller. "Spray" completes the set with the spiciest joint on the EP, all tightly wound beats and nagging rhythmic wriggles both built for functionality but equally intriguing on the ear - a perfect DJ tool with enough sass to stand on its own.
Review: The ever-busy Nick Beringer makes his first appearance of 2020 with this sure shot on Constant Black, bringing just the kind of funking and bumping minimal tech house the label has staked its reputation on. "Epsilon" leads the charge with a snappy drum framework as a vessel for deep sonar blips and swooping pads, before the vibe switches for something markedly cheekier on the delightfully freaky "Noseblunt". "Turning Point (Club Mix)" keeps things tight and functional for the dance, taking Beringer's sound in a more overtly techno direction, while the subsequent "Deep Mix" of the track keeps the vibe similar but works a richer spread of synth shapes into the mix.
Review: Over the past couple of years Niko Maxen has been busy firing out hit after hit of refined minimal with an emphasis on moody atmospheres and intricate, off-centre groove programming. From early releases on Pathway Traxx to recent outings on Roche Noire, Rowle and many others, he's already got a lot of heat behind him, and so it continues with this killer EP for Constant Black. "Go Gently" is a dense, electrifying workout with a killer beat and spooked out pads, while "Sanctuary" edges towards bubbling modular synth lines perfect for psychotropic warm-ups. "Cosmic Jazz" is a little more straight-up in its demeanour, albeit with wigged out FX sends riding over the top, while "Light Drizzle" heads into tripped out territory once again.
Review: Constant Black make it clear they're committed to the tradition of minimal tech house with this mean ol' monster from Bodeler & Saenz. "Blumpted" has some necessary rise and falls throughout its run time, but it's really about that unrelenting, unapologetic deep and heavy beatdown. The stuff marathon set dreams are made of. "Panash" has plenty of bump of its own, with a little more tweaking going on in the synth department, while "Hobbs" widens things out with a few more melodic components and some flecks of sound design trickery in the mix.
Review: Michael James' "Winds Of Change" EP was a big look for Constant Black, and now the eminent minimal house label draws on a hit list of sharp shooters to deliver some deadly remixes. Huerta is up first with an angular but rolling dub twist on "Catch Me If You Can", before Nick Beringer pings things in a wonderfully hazy direction with his "7am Dub" of "Stormy Skies". Pascal Benjamin gets into a tight, focused funk on his version of "Reservoir", and then Jorge Savoretti flies in an Ethereal Dub of "Catch Me If You Can".