Review: Given his passion for fusing contemporary dance music with a giddy array of global sounds, it's little surprise to see Brian D'Souza AKA Auntie Flo popping up on Moscoman's Disco Halal label. There's something particularly alluring about "Baba", a suitably deep, woozy and intoxicating house cut that sees him wrap heady hand percussion, exotic flute lines and sun-kissed chords around a Middle East inspired rhythm track. He explores similar sonic territory on the slightly bolder - but no less melodious - "Kabsa", while "Ras" sounds like an unlikely Arabic fusion of Pet Shop Boys' "West End Girls" and the intoxicating "ethno-house" of Nicola Cruz. Speaking of which, Cruz pops up to deliver a typically sparse but percussive take on "Kabsa" that helps lift the EP to even greater heights.
GoldHeart Mountain Top Queen Directory - (2:20) 104 BPM
Let The Water Run - (4:44) 85 BPM
Wipe The Shame (feat Xen) - (4:06) 56 BPM
Bongos & Tambourines - (3:41) 120 BPM
Warmth - (4:13) 140 BPM
Review: Tel Aviv's Nadav Spiegel takes off where he left us with last year's mini album Can You Pass The Knife? with the full-length I Love You Go Away. Touching on the likes of Jamie Lidell, Stuart Price, Luke Slater and Alexis Taylor with a great strength at hooky one-lines and profound pictures, Nadav remains pensively introspective over his often full-flavoured machine grooves. Highlights include the cloud-surfing instrumental "Let The Water Run", the heavily LCD laced hypnotic sermon "How To Cheat" and the poignant eastern sunset twang of the finale "Warmth". Outstanding.
Review: Until recently Moscoman's Disco Halal label had focused on offering up some prime edits for the more open-minded DJs and dancefloors. One of the label's main contributors, Autarkic, heralds a new dawn for Disco Halal with his debut album, Can You Pass The Knife?, signalling a switch to original music. The brainchild of Tel Aviv artist Nadav Spiegel, we first got a taste of Autarkic's potential for original material with a EP for Phil South's Golf Channel last year and this album superbly picks up where that single left off. Autarkic lifts the cold wave template into the modern age with Can You Pass The Knife?, crafting six songs rife with the sort of emotive intensity that work perfectly on the dancefloor in the trademark Disco Halal fashion.
Review: Around this time last year, Israeli new romantic Nadav Spiegel aka Autarkic released the I Love You Go Away LP on the Tel Aviv founded and now Berlin based Disco Halal. It now gets treated to a series of fairly stellar remixes. Moscow's Simple Symmetry gives "Bongos & Tambourines" a fairly low-slung treatment that still retains all the original's indie-dance qualities, while fellow homeboys Red Axes work their magic as always on a couple of remixes: firstly on "Giberish Love Song" and then the deep down and dirty "Wipe The Shame".
Review: Name a highly respected and innovative label in techno and there's a strong chance Chaim has blessed it. Moscoman's Disco Halal is a perfect fit for Chaim who's signature flexes around the alluring, mystical and hypnotic aesthetics and instrumentations of the east. "Perfect Circle" is the perfect example as it charms the softest of snakes from the deepest of pockets then brainwashes them with an array of trippy vocal stutters and spine-rippling chords. "Ha Alla" maintains the spiritual feels with a little more steel drum introspection while "Slower Circle" takes elements of the lead track and brings them right down into a low-lidded slumber jam. Sweet dreams.
Review: After years spent flitting between such high profile labels as Visionquest, BPitch Control, Turbo and Supplement Facts, Chaim made his debut on Moscoman's Disco Halal label this time last year. While the resultant EP, "The Perfect Circle", was rather good, this belated follow-up is even better. Check, for example, druggy title track "Your Mulana", where military drum fills, exotic Middle Eastern vocals and lilting electronic melodies ride a faintly foreboding, low-slung groove. Or, for that matter, the mind-altering psychedelic disco thrust of "Ventilator" - all psych guitar solos, Italo-disco style arpeggio lines and creepy electronic - and wavy drums-and-synths style of closing cut "Toriaz". Also impressive is the atmospheric tech-house-meets-cosmic-disco shuffle of the Trikk Numero Fim Dub of "Your Mulana".
Review: Joseph Ashworth is known as a house and techno producer, but his latest outing on Disco Halal finds him exploring more downtempo/leftfield territory. Imagine getting Burial to produce a 1980s Kate Bush track in the style of those "chill-out" mixes you used to get of fluffy Eurotrance records in the late 90s, and you're somewhere close to an idea of what the Original Mix of 'Breathe' (feat Vanity Fairy) sounds like. Dropping the female vocal (well, mostly) gives the Instrumental a slightly darker feel, but for dancefloor play head for the Tunnelvisions Remix, which makes great use of an old school breakbeat and a dubby bassline.
Review: Kincaid is none other than Joe Arthur, whose dad Neil Arthur was the driving force behind 1980s synth-pop mavericks Blancmange. It makes sense, then, that Poppa Arthur would make an appearance on "Big Fat Head", his son's first single for Disco Halal. He provides a typically stylish, delay-laden spoken word vocal that slowly rises above a throbbing bed of exotic synthesizer lines, thrusting electronic bass, feverish Middle Eastern flourishes and layered percussion. The headline remix comes from Moscoman and Trikk, who re-imagine the track as a spacey and forthright chunk of leftfield electronic disco goodness. Joe Arthur handles the other remixes himself, serving up an atmospheric, slowly building Club Mix anda min-altering dub mix rich in sweaty drum hits, throbbing bass breakdowns and fluttering synth-flute flourishes.
Review: It would be fair to say that Alex "Kiwi" Warren is on a roll. Here, he follows up fine releases on Futureboogie, Optimo Music and 17 Steps with a decidedly exotic outing on Disco Halal. In its original form, lead cut "Pine Marten" is something of a bubbly electronic treat, with synthesizer voices, glistening lead guitar and chiming melodies drifting over hissing cymbals and an undulating, slo-mo arpeggio. While more of an ambient excursion than a peak-time treat, Warren has also delivered a stunningly sleazy, Moroder-influenced Club Mix that throbs and pulses in all the right places. To complete a fine EP, Warren looks towards the Middle East on the driving but dreamy hum of "Daubenten Bat".
Review: Last spotted on his own Disco Halal imprint reworking the dickens out TCP, Moscoman returns with another spellbinding technoid work of mystery in the form of "I Ran". An enchanting call to attention with a beguiling prayer song, Arabic strings and a mystic, spine-shuddering atmosphere, it's complemented with an equally alluring remix by the Lipsky brothers Simple Symmetry project. Maintaining the evocative shades of the original but with more of a cosmic sense of spirituality (and a hip-slinking drumset to boot) it's the perfect remix companion. Run for fun.
Review: Last year Disco Halal introduced us to Mount Kismet, a production trio comprising David Ducarage, Douglas Pisterman and Henning Specht, via a track on the multi-artist "Perfect Strangers EP". Here they offer the threesome a chance to set out their distinctive take on exotic musical fusion via a debut album that effortlessly joins the dots between psychedelic electronic disco, intoxicating Middle Eastern music and chugging, sunrise-ready house. There's much to admire throughout, from the layered percussion and haunting melodies of "Agfa" and "Arif", to the spaced-out, string-laden brilliance of "Targajh Movement 1" and the stylish Arabic post-punk psychedelia of "Teenage Fantasy".
Review: David Ducaruge, Douglas Pisterman and Henning Specht, collectively known as Mount Kismet, have released just two singles, both in the last 18 months or so and both on Disco Halal, and now they return with two new remixes of the second one, 'Teenage Fantasy'. Both feature the same bubbling 303 bass and haughty, coldwave-style spoken female vocal, but Whitesquare's rub is more angular and attitude-y and likely to find favour with the indie-dance crowd, while Kino Todo's rub has a hazier, more 'epic' feel that means it'd make for a good set-builder in progressive/melodic sets. Look out for their album 'Warmer Lanes', which is coming next month.
Review: el Aviv groove ambassador Naduve gets his sweat on as he pegs it to the first hairy palm he can find... And crosses it with pure cosmic silver. "Ready Set Go" is a star-gazing web of twinkles over a slow-and-low drum arrangement while the Saturn Memories remix takes us into much more unforgiving aluminium territories. "10k From Essaouira" adds more fuel to his creative fire with a tech-edged groove lightly sugared with Tuvan throat singing. Finally, the in-demand Israeli gets the shake of his dreams as we strut steadily into a deep filtered loopy experience that sparkles in all the right places. Magic, as with everything else from Disco Halal.
Review: Low Budget Family and Glenview Records regulars Simple Symmetry, AKA Russian brothers Sergey and Sasha Lipsky, are the latest outfit to join the Disco Halal revolution. Looking towards Persia for inspiration, the OST Version of "Plane Goes East" is an intoxicating, heady brew of chugging, bubbly synth arpeggio lines, cascading oriental melodies and opium den guitars. As cinematic as you'd expect - it feels like the theme tune from a yet-to-be-released, Istanbul-based horror flick - it gets the full synth-driven dub disco treatment on the accompanying Dance Version. The muscular dancefloor thrills continue on the flip, where "Voodoo Your Ex" gleefully joins the dots between thrusting Italo-disco and chant-heavy Turkish boogie.
Enkidu (Adam Port's Tulum By Night edit) - (8:00) 120 BPM
Review: Since making their bow on Disco Halal back in 2017, Simple Symmetry has served up some of their most potent tracks on Moscoman's much-admired imprint. Predictably, they're on fine form on this four-track missive, too. First up is the arpeggio-driven sleaziness of "Gilgamesh", where hallucinatory electronics, exotic lead lines and twisted vocal samples rise above unfussy beats and an impressively driving bassline. Further examples of dancefloor psychedelia follow, with the Turkish pysch/cosmic disco pulse of "Fight" ushering in the raw and intoxicating Middle Eastern throb of "Enkidu". To round off the EP, Adam Port provides a slightly chunkier re-edit that cannily makes the most of the track's squelchy bassline and eyes-closed psychedelic guitar solos.
Review: Russian brothers Sasha and Sergey Lipsky made their Disco Halal bow just over a year ago, serving up an EP that joined the dots between Persian mysticism and chugging contemporary disco. They're at it again here, though many will note that fine first track, "Too Much Fun At The Temple of Doom" is an altogether more up-tempo exploration of their Middle Eastern influences than we've come to expect. It's rather good, all told, and is given fine by the Arabic-Italo chug of "Dervish Euphoria" and the rubbery, Lebanese synth-pop-goes-acid-house goodness of closer "Exploding Toads Mystery", which may well be one of the song titles of the year.
Review: Moscoman's increasingly influential Disco Halal label have outdone themselves once more on this latest release, an official reissue of the highly sought-after self-titled TCP album. Standing for Tony Carey Project, this 13-track LP originally saw the light of day on the classic X Records back in 1984 and laid down a marker for the sound the former Rainbow keys man would go on to explore as Yellow Power and Planet P. If you are a fan of the DJ mixes of Lena Willikens or Red Axes you really need to invest some time in this TCP album which set the groundwork for the electronic music we know today.
Review: Since 2014, Moscoman has worked hard to reach the reputation he's at now, and that comes in part to the music he's released on ESP Institute and Cosmo Vitelli's I'm A Cliche. But not simply relying on others to put out his music, Moscoman launched Disco Halal last year which has already notched up a whopping 10 releases, including a reissue of Tony Carey's 1984 album as TCP, which he indulgently remixes three times on this release. Appropriately, Moscoman tackles the album's title-track, shining a spotlight on the production's chorus of vocals, while the "Oasis" remix plays with Italo melodies, subtle middle eastern themes in a producton almost made for a Beverly Hills Cop scene. "A Voice Across The Nile" opens the EP with a slinky drum track however Moscoman does let a cascading synth open up for some undeniable '80s vibes.
Review: Deep, techy, tribal grooves with a multicultural flavour are the order of the day on this four-track EP, which sees Disco Halal boss Moscoman teaming up with Ukrainian producer The Organism. The Extended Mix of 'Rite' itself is the standout, burrowing its way into your consciousness with three minutes of simple, chugging beats and sleazy, throbbing bass before unleashing its distinctive breathy, chanted Afro vocal and twisting, flute-like lead. The accompanying Disco Halal remix has a slightly more Middle Eastern feel, while 'Chumbai' and 'Rubab' are more standard tech fare but hold their own alongside some tough competition.
Review: Berlin based Israelis Disco Halal are purveyors of all things exotic and this is further exemplified tremendously on their Perfect Strangers EP. With previous releases by hometown heroes such as Moscoman and Autarkic, you know what kind of oddball grooves to expect from this bunch! The Organism from Ukraine serves up some dark disco of the most hypnotic kind on "Reflection", Kincaid (Sol Selectas/Silver Bear) gets into some esoteric tribal vibes like a true shaman on "Tyrant" and mysterious trio Mount Kismet get back to the program on the trippy and lo-slung cosmo-balearica of "Prune & Dunes".
Review: Since launching a couple of years back, Moscoman's previously vinyl-only Disco Halal imprint has led the way in fusing the sounds of the Middle East with contemporary electronic music culture. For proof, check Halal Collection, the label's first digital release. It offers an 11-track trawl through the best of the label's output to date, with a previously unreleased Red Axes remix of Autarkic's "How To Cheat" - think bubbling drum machine beats and lilting, cascading synthesizer melodies - thrown in. Highlights include a chunk of spooky, Arabic house hypnotism from Naduve, the skewed late night funk of TCP's "Twonga", the intoxicating, anthem-like throb of Simple Symmetry's "Voodoo Your Ex" and the thrillingly percussive disco-funk/acid house fusion of Red Axes, Moscoman and Krikor's "Subaru Pesha".
Review: Sometime Going Good and Jin Records producer Yoshinori Hayashi re-surfaces on Disco Halal, a label befitting his maverick, impossible-to-pigeonhole talents. Uncountable Set is predictably eccentric, with Hayashi laying down a quartet of muddy, otherworldly cuts that gleefully stick two fingers up at neat categorization. Check, for example, the rhythmic sample soup this is "Palanquin Bearing Monkey" - think spacey, jazz-funk synth doodles, handclap-based rhythms and all manner of woozy, cut and paste samples - the out-there afro-jazz of "Stepping on Dewdrops" and the frankly nightmarish closer "Chember", a fiendishly freaky weird-out that peppers a slipped jazz rhythm with cut-up choral samples and cement mixer percussion hits.