Crosstown Rebels deliver a unique underground music experience. Run by artist & DJ Damian Lazarus, who loves quality alternative sounds & thrives on creative, young people armed with something new to say.
Review: Israeli indie-dance hero Moscoman is back on Crosstown Rebels this week, with an amazing collaboration with British electroclash legends Zoot Woman. The result is "Adventura", a deep chug exploration into the stratosphere which will leave you truly dazed, followed by the slinky and hypnotic cut "Reinvention" featuring Adam Blake's wonderful vocal delivery throughout. A remix comes from Love Attack label boss Alan Dixon, who takes the track into cosmic disco territory.
Review: German duo Manqo's first outing on Crosstown Rebels, last year's 'Breaking Hearts', was undoubtedly their breakthrough release - a deliciously atmospheric, sub-heavy fusion of deep house and tech-house that won plenty of plaudits from DJs and critics alike. 'Always Something' is similarly strong: a warm, woozy and otherworldly affair in which opaque aural textures, eyes-closed vocals, bubbly electronics and piano motifs ride a subtly tribal-tinged rhythm track and deep sub-bass. Ida Engberg provides the accompanying remix, re-framing the track as a wonky, densely layered and billowing chunk of thickset tech-house euphoria. It's a fittingly soaring and wholehearted revision of Manqo's impressive original version.
Review: Cologne-based producer Jonathan Kaspar is known for his awe-inspiring work on legendary local imprint Kompakt, being one of their key artists in recent times who really encapsulates the label's idiosyncratic style. The Gewoelbe Club resident now makes an appearance on the ever reliable Crosstown Rebels for his latest EP. "Overfree" is a typically life-affirming affair optimised for those saucer-eyed moments under the strobe light, followed by the subdued yet ultra deep minimalism of "Ten". Get on your tunnel vision while being truly hypnotised on next cut "Piece Of" and ending with one more utterly evocative affair - the downbeat dancefloor drama of "Unify" (feat Graham Baxter).
Review: Crosstown Rebels presents a new captivating full length release by Satori. Recorded at the esteemed Sonic Vista Studios in Ibiza, the result is a wonderful collection of world music journeys, steeped in the Dutch artist's Balkan roots and traversing various genres whether it be blues ("The Gin Song"), indie electronic ("Lalai"/"Troublemaker" ft El Mundo), to opera ("Lonely Boy"), folk ("Colourful Dream") and more. As Dreamin' Colours introduces him to a wider audience, Satori remains one of the most truly exciting names in electronic music at present.
Review: Barcelona based Tibi Dabo's distinct and invigorating sound has resulted in a few EPs for Crosstown Rebels thus far, also remixing label chief Damian Lazarus on two occasions. Now he presents his fourth offering titled "Isla", which is a groovy balearic house cut, followed by the dusty and melancholic deep house of "Mothball". For something with more dancefloor dynamics for the main room, he has you covered on the swirling and hypnotic "Brain The Cut" while the low slung hip-house beats of closing track "Arp 8" is the perfect soundtrack for watching the sunset by the poolside.
Review: Established UK talent Made By Pete (Saved/Rebirth/Radiant ) joins forces with Mexico-based duo Cristiano & Sheena aka Savage & SHe (Abracadabra/Earthly Delights/TrueColors/Trndmsk) for the latest release on Damian Lazarus' Crosstown Rebels. The result is the spiritual deep house journey that is "Walls Of Zion", which takes strong cues from the Afro house sound, while the more straight ahead tech house of "Too Drnk To Dream" is a slinky and hypnotic affair that's perfect to set the mood during the warm-up set.
Review: Following up last year's &Hope EP on their Sum Over Histories label, German duo Frankey & Sandrino return this week with a new release for Crosstown Rebels featuring two typically atmospheric house journeys. Embrace the pure dancefloor drama of A side cut "Optical", a futuristic affair perfect for those eyes-closed moments on the dancefloor. You also have the mesmerising journey into the deep that is "Gridd" which will captivate you with its rich sonic tapestry that's weaved together using multi-layered melodies.
Review: Love & Happiness is one of Saraga's first releases, but it shows that this emerging producer has already developed a distinctive voice. The title track is a mellow affair, with gentle vocals unravelling against a backdrop of rolling drums, melodic piano keys and loose percussion. On "Mujer", Saraga deploys Middle Eastern samples over a robust rhythm, while he goes deeper on "All Day Every Day". Led by pulsating bass and lithe percussion, it calls to mind US-style deep house. Then there's "Mantra"; drawing again on Middle Eastern vocal samples, combined with staccato drums and a frazzled bass, it makes for a mysterious end to this distinctive EP
Review: Given that their discography is rather slender right now, it would be fair to say that this outing on Crosstown Rebels is Manqo's most high-profile release to date. We're willing to bet that it will be the German duo's breakthrough release. There's certainly loads to like about 'Breaking Hearts', a sub-heavy chunk of deep house/tech-house fusion that wraps Amos' vocals, Innervisions style electronics and trippy aural textures around a hypnotic, locked-in beat. South African superstar Black Coffee handles the obligatory remix, offering a more drowsy, musically expansive take that adds detailed percussion, warming chords and all manner of trippy effects to the Teutonic pair's high-quality original.
Review: Roots is a 10 track LP which draws inspiration from Dennis Cruz's life experiences, incorporating the many disparate influences that have resulted in his success as a DJ and producer to this day. A Spanish theme is central to the release, a nod to the country and culture that Cruz calls home and collaborations are aplenty throughout. Highlights come in the form of the deeply hypnotic locomotive chug of "Good Old Days" featuring the mighty Ion Ludwig, while the tough rolling tech house of "What You Doing" ft. Leo Wood is aimed squarely at the main room dancefloor. Elsewhere, the polyrhythmic minimal funk of "Go Down" features the legendary Lee Scratch Perry and on the sultry Latin vibe of "Ahora Todo Va" (Dub) Cruz teams up with scene hero Josh Butler.
Review: Later this month Dennis Cruz will release his debut album, Roots, a set that the experienced producer says is a "convergence of influences" including funk, salsa, flamenco, house and disco. We eagerly await that dropping, but first there's this teaser single to savour. In its original form, 'What You Doing' is a sparse, rolling late-night house jam in which emotion-rich female vocals rise above a sparse but weighty mix of loose-limbed house drums, metronomic bass, dark-room stabs and filtered, barely audible chords. German veteran Mousse T provides the accompanying remix, adding a dose of funk to proceedings via a squelchy bassline, warmer chords and some sparkling, smile-inducing piano riffs. His revision is available in both vocal and instrumental forms, with the former being our pick of a strong pair.
Review: Rogue D and Memoryman AKA Uovo are old studio buddies. While this surprise single on Crosstown Rebels is not their first joint outing to be released- their collaborations have previously featured on Rebellion, DFD, Snatch and Too Many Rules - it's undoubtedly their most high profile to date. In its original form, 'Electric Safari' throbs and builds impressively, with energy-packed percussion fills, creepy chords, squiggly synth notes and fluid piano motifs riding a driving, kick-drum-driven groove and foreboding electronic bassline. The pair's own Dub mix is as trippy and mind-altering as you'd expect, while Roman Flugel weighs in with two impressive reworks: a dark and hypnotic 'Remix' that emphasises the pair's arpeggio-style bassline while adding denser tech-house drums, and a deeper, more spacey 'Dub' that sounds ripe for early morning plays.
Review: MUSE co-founder Dennis Cruz has cemented his reputation as one of global dance music's most esteemed talents, in a career that spans decades. He returns to Crosstown Rebels with the Los Tamales two tracker, which precedes the forthcoming full length which will drop on the label in October. The title track is a salsa-inspired cut that rolls deep and features Yazaneth's signature Spanish vocals. Second offering "Monkey Business" benefits from a more minimal arrangement and dubby bass and makes for perfect tackle for the warm-up or afterhours alike.
Review: With the legend of Krust's The Edge Of Everything album closing on a three part remix series, Crosstown Rebels go the distance with an encore by bringing all the remixes together in one place. Cast your eyes down Crosstown's curation and you'll find heavy hitters like UNKLE and Calibre in the mix next to Four Tet and more contemporary club focused acts like Batu, Flynn, LCY and Hodge. But perhaps what makes this release such a wildcard success is the transatlantic house combinations of DJ Nature, Damian Lazarus himself, and true legends of the scene - Masters At Work.
Review: A legend in the house to be spoken in the same sentence as Ed Rush, Optical, Zinc and Roni Size, Bristol's own Krust takes it strangeways on Crosstown Rebels - and the label's third installment of album remixes. Diving back into that deep and hopeful sound of '90s drum and bass, breakbeat and soul is a rare UNKLE remix of "Hegel Dialect", that like Hodge's remake of "Constructive Ambiguity" lifts its inspiration of course from the halcyon days of hardcore, jungle and rave with ghostly atmospheres to boot. With a most fitting wildcard entrant to cap off this great remix series - that has so far included Masters At Work, Four Tet, Damian Lazarus, Batu, Calibre, LCY and Flynn - sweet New Yorkian house vibes and ambient percussion come through in DJ Nature's remix of "Deep Fields Of Liars". Krust & Crosstown equals result!
Review: Sankeys resident Darius Syrossian was chatting with London tech house legend Bushwacka at the beginning of lockdown about starting a collaboration. When the latter checked out what Syrossian had been releasing on Moxy, there was a feeling that it would indeed work and could be the first of many. With that in mind Crosstown Rebels presents "Return To Jericho", a deep and evocative joint featuring hypnotic polyrhythms and a dubby atmosphere that makes for perfect mood music. This is followed by the more minimal and moodier groove of "Akkabi Blue" that's just perfect for going deeper into the afterhours.
Review: Some excellent all-star action here, as Amberoom (AKA Manuel Tur and Adrian Hoffman) join forces with scene stalwart Blakkat and LA artist Babygirl for a first joint single on Crosstown Rebels. In its' original form, 'Forces of Nature' is attractive and intoxicating in original measure, with soulful lead vocals riding bubbly synthesizer lines, undulating synth-bass and a stripped-back rhythm track. The headline remixes come from Radio Slave, who delivers two 'New Age of Love' reworks. The first is dreamy and loved-up, delivering a 21st century update on the funky breakbeat house sound of the early '90s, while the second is a hip-hop tempo take that's every bit as alluring. To complete the EP, Blakkat and Lucas Forta re-invent 'Forces of Nature' as a deep, Latin-tinged chunk of jazz-house hedonism.
Review: Junior Sanchez may not enjoy quite as high a profile as he did back in the nineties and noughties, but he continues to deliver regular doses of tried-and-tested dancefloor gold. His latest EP - his first for Crosstown Rebels - ticks a lot of boxes, delivering a quartet of cuts tailor-made for big rooms and dark basements. He first joins forces with fellow scene stalwart Todd Terry on 'Live Forever', a slowly building, tactile chunk of celebratory house retro-futurism that's as spine-tingling and rushing as they come, before opting for heavier bass on disco-tinged number 'After Love'. 'My Mind Goes' is an even heavier and more psychedelic late-night bumper, while 'Body Heat' is a wonky techno number full of mind-mangling riffs, warped bass and Switch style beats.
Review: Something of a meeting of minds here, as long-established Spanish producer Dennis Cruz (Stereo Productions, Hot Creations, Moon Harbour Recordings) joins forces with fellow deep house/tech-house fusionist Josh Butler (Madtech, Defected, Rejected), for a joyous bounce through carnival-ready Latin house. 'Ahora Tado Ba' sneakily uses portions from what sounds like an old Latin jazz record, brilliantly weaving them around a bouncy, drum-heavy samba-house groove. It's an insanely infectious cut and one that we're fully expecting to hear tons over the summer. It comes backed by a drawn-out, loved-up tech-house take from Gorgon City that's arguably far more emotive than Cruz and Butler's original, if a little less urgent, energetic and funky.
Review: Following up the lead single "Under Your Skin" with Kevin Knapp, veteran duo Audiojack of Gruuv Recordings fame finally unveil their full length album on Crosstown Rebels. The Leeds natives James Rial and Richard Burkinshaw last served up an LP back in 2009, so it's another career high for the pair and features a diverse array of moods and grooves across 10 tracks. From the balearic downbeat chill vibe of "Binaural Dreaming", to the funky and bass-driven tech house of "Easy Rider" or similarly the acid laced "Psychoactive" (Part 1) which are more typical of the pair. Not to mention the utterly euphoric second single "Feels Good" featuring vocalist Jem Cooke, its a cohesive effort by these staples of the Ibiza party circuit.
Review: Earlier in the year Audiojack teased their forthcoming second album, Surface Tension - their first full-length excursion for 12 years - with a pleasingly off-kilter and bass-heavy cut featuring an atmospheric vocal from Kevin Knapp. 'Feels Good', which features storied singer Jem Cooke, is also taken from Surface Tension. It's arguably even better than its predecessor, with Cooke's delay-laden vocals riding crunchy drum machine percussion, ghostly chords and a restless, rolling electronic bassline. The accompanying Patrice Baumel remix is simply stunning, too, with twinkling piano motifs and atmospheric stabs rising above a smoother but weightier, kick-drum driven groove. As it progresses, Baumel introduces sparkling synths and richer chords, taking an already excellent track into the stratosphere.
Review: Last time we heard from Emmanuel Satie back in January, he was delivering an epic slab of muscular, percussion-rich peak-time house on Moon Harbour ('One Love'). 'Personal Liberation', the title track from the former Get Physical regular's first Crosstown Rebels outing, is similarly weighty and drum-heavy, with guest vocalist Naghiti speaking echo-laden words over gargantuan sub-bass, dark string sounds, moody chords and a bouncy, percussion-rich Afro-house beat. Elsewhere, 'The Keys To Jupiter' is a more melancholic and bittersweet affair, with mournful piano motifs rising above a more shuffling (but no less rubbery) tech-house beat, while 'Somewhere Else In Time' cheerily joins the dots between classic electro, Inner City's 'Good Life' and symphonic deep house.
Review: By his usually prolific standards, Harry "Choo Choo" Romero has been rather quiet of late, offering up just two missives of note in 2020. Here he pitches up on Damian Lazarus's Crosstown Rebels imprint for the very first time, delivering a dark room throb-job that's arguably far less muscular than many of his productions - even if it does boast a thickset, mind-altering bassline and plenty of layered percussion. Romero provides vocal and instrumental mixes, with the former adding spoken word sections from Jessica Eve to the New York producer's addictive blend of minor key motifs, spacey chords and suitably wonky electronic noises. Rodriguez Jr. provides the other mix, skilfully re-imagining the track as a woozy, soft-touch tech-house number full of shuffling beats, moody chords and undulating lead lines.
Review: This is the first release together for Tuskegee Music co-heads The Martinez Bros and Seth Troxler since "Space & Time" back in 2014. But as far as Crosstown Rebels is concerned, the Bros are making their debut here, and Troxler returning for the first time since 2011 when he collaborated with Art Department on "Living The Life". The result is "Play In The Dark" with its woozy after hours style of boompty business, immersed in swinging rhythms, dirty bass and ethereal chords. Troxler's Freak Mix is more of an introverted and heads down affair, which will hypnotise you into submission in the tradition of DJ Koze's classic "I Want To Sleep".
Review: Damian Lazarus' Crosstown Rebels imprint has been bringing some consistent quality over the last months, with releases by drum & bass legend DJ Krust and most recently Audiojack and Kevin Knapp's "These Days" which came with a killer remix by Pearson Sound. The label is now into the fourth edition in the SPIRITS compilation series, with highlights coming from Radio 1 legend Pete Tong teaming up with Italian tech house producer Alex Kennon on the slinky groove of "Apache", the ever reliable Francesca Lombardo with the mesmerising cosmic dancefloor journey "Freak On Sea" as well as Los Angelno pair Lubelski & Xkylar with the afterhours minimal shuffle of "Passion Fruits" and the Minus affiliated Matador with the lurking bass and moody atmospherics of "Vulture" - plus many more.
Review: Crosstown Rebels follows up a killer album by drum & bass legend DJ Krust with this new one by Gruuv main men Audiojack, who team up with American expat in Berlin Kevin Knapp. The result is "Under Your Skin", an off-kilter and experimental cut that's quite unlike anything you've heard from the producers before, with its intoxicating and bass-driven vibe that's perfect for the chill-out or warm-up alike. With this in mind, it receives a remix from quite the suitable candidate in the form of Pearson Sound. The UK bass hero taking the track into the more hypnotic realms in pursuit of his typically low end theories.