Review: Spanish producer Adri?n Calystarr comes to James Rod's Golden Soul Records with an EP that packs two tracks of dark, electronic disco. 'Night Rules' itself is up first, a moody, midtempo affair that's got an almost new beat-ish feel, with shakers, sci-fi synths and disembodied fragments of barely-there vox sitting atop its incessant bass chug and driving 4/4 kick. 'Acid Monster' is similar in MO but picks up the pace a little, with the otherworldly synths and whispered vocals now joined by the unmistakeable squelch of the TB-303 and an indecipherable background chant that recalls Paper classic 'The Book'.
Review: East London-based From Beyond, who's also one-half of Machine Disco and whose name may or may not betray an 80s horror fixation, brings us the glacial, synth-tastic 'Faster Than Light', a track that draws heavily on early 80s electro and Italo-disco for inspiration. On the remix front, Ivan De La Rouch takes us into darker, more EBM/new beat-ish territory, while Azaria's rework is more faithful to the original but does add a little low-end heft. The EP's completed by 'Tropic Of Venus', which is similar in MO to the title track but perhaps just a little bit warmer and more organic-sounding.
Review: If dark, moody, synth-y disco is what floats your boat, you'll find same by the bucketload on this two-track, four-mix EP from the Spanish duo of David Martin and Diego Gomez, better known as K-Effect. 'Displacement 77' blends influences from Italo disco and Belgian new beat and serves them up with a 'French Kiss'-like throb, and comes accompanied by a more stripped-back remix from Kate Stein. The sweeping, dramatic 'Prometheus' then goes full-on Italo, before being handed over to James Rod for a remix whose slo-mo, sleazy grind is almost apocalyptic in feel, and which to these ears is the EP standout.
Review: For a certain type of buyer, anything with the names Aleito, James Rod and Azaria attached to it is likely to be an essential purchase, but let's try and describe it anyway! Synth-y nu-disco is, naturally, the order of the day here, with Aleito's original mix topping a bass-y, chugging groove with Italo-esque synths that wibble and flutter like it was going out fashion, while Rod beefs things up considerably on a mix that could find itself surprisingly at home on progressive/melodic house floors, and Azaria goes for the jugular with a rub that ticks the box marked 'eyes-down and driving'.
Review: There's certainly no shortage of synth-led, Euro/Italo-inspired disco around right now, and here we get four more slices of such to choose from courtesy of Vigi, a producer from Nice, France whose work has previously appeared on Spa In Disco, Slightly Transformed and NDYD Records, among others. There are three rubs of 'Unknown Lover' but they don't vary hugely, truth be told: Aleito's mix is a tad darker, James Rod's a touch more psychedelic and druggy, but these are very subtle distinctions. Bonus cut 'Never Forget', meanwhile, couldn't be more Moroder-esque if it changed its name to Giorgio!
Review: Spain's Alfonso Gill, AKA Fonsi G, steps up to the plate with three synth-led slices of contemporary disco. The Italo-esque title track 'Ufos' is a chugging, looping, throbbing affair with a suitably sci-fi feel to the synths, 'Isidisco Ball' operates in similar musical territory but has, perhaps, a slightly more organic, funky vibe about it, while 'She Doesn't' has a distinctly Giorgio Moroder/Patrick Cowley kinda feel and a stabbed-in "dance, dance, dance, dance" female vocal. With two of the tracks having already been premiered by Mixmag and DJ Mag Spain, this EP should do well, so don't sleep!
Review: Hoochie Coochie Papa's last outing on Golden Soul, Diskotanssi, delivered deliciously deep blends of pulsating Italo-disco revivalism and druggy nu-disco. On 'I Need You', he dips the tempo and flips the script slightly, placing a headline-grabbing, each-catching, TB-303 style acid melody atop warm, glassy-eyed synth chords, wavy vocal snippets and gentle, electrofunk influenced drums. It's a warming and sunset-ready affair all told. Alberto Mollini opens the accompanying remix package by re-casting the track as a 21st century Italo-disco throb-job, before Aussie edit fiends Downunder Disco deliver a deep, starry nu-disco interpretation that's as loved-up as they come.
Review: Hailing from Riccione, Italy, former guitarist turned electrodisco DJ and producer Albert Melloni owns and runs the Raibano Records label. Here, though, he comes to Golden Soul with a track that lifts the vocal from Imagination's 'New Dimension' (1983), and that's served up in a choice of three mixes. Melloni's original is a fast-paced throbber with weighty 4/4s, big dramatic piano chords and something of an 80s feel. Madrid's Lebollet (Miguel Redondo) takes us down a druggier, more acidic path, while a mellower, dubbier pass from James Rod completes the EP. It's Leee John's distinctive falsettto that carries it, though, whichever rub you opt for!
Review: Mexican producer Alex Aguayo comes to Spanish label Golden Soul with an EP that packs two tracks in a total of five mixes. In its original form, 'Time Travel' itself is a hazy, pulsing affair that blends influences from nu-disco and progressive house and simply oozes sunshine, while Cosmic Sumo boss Andrea Rucci turns in an even more euphoric remix. 'Wake', meanwhile, is an energetic, Italo-inspired, trance-tinged cut that's available in techy, throbbing Original, hi-octane Alberto Melloni Remix or slowed-down 'n' sleazed-out JB Dizzy Remix flavours, with the latter rub the EP standout for this reviewer.
Review: Spain's Javier Busto - a Madrid DJ/producer who's not to be confused with the modern classical composer of the same name - brings the Euro/Italo disco vibes on 'Robot In Mars', a very early 80s-sounding affair augmented by a BIG electric guitar riff. Remix-wise, Aleito serves up some small hours insanity on his dark n' spacey rub, From Beyond opt for crunchier beats, chipmunk'd vocal trickery and a liberal serving of acid, while for big room drama, look no further than James Rod's Cosmic Vocal Darkness Remix. Intense, sleazy and sure to be big on floors where chest harnesses and amyl nitrate are popular.
Review: JGR is Julian Garcia-Reyes, a Chilean DJ/producer who's now based in Madrid, and this EP for Golden Soul packs four synth-heavy tracks that blur the boundaries between nu-disco, Italo, progressive house and synth-pop. 'Dansari' is led by a plinky-plonk synth riff that's vaguely reminiscent of Bronski Beat's 'Smalltown Boy', which it marries to synthesized strings that hint at a love of Visage. The accompanying 'Alphard' is a darker, more driving affair that could easily cross over onto prog floors, before remixes from Daniel Monaco and Aleito nudge it further down the roads marked 'mid-80s Berlin' and 'Burning Man-style playa house' respectively.
Review: Disco Balls regular Hoochie Coochie Papa made a fine first appearance on Golden Soul back in 2019, impressing us with a single that giddily paid tribute to Italo-disco and mid-'80s Hi-NRG. "Diskotanssi", the mysterious producer(s) sequel, offers a spacey, deeper take on Italo-disco revivalism, with shimmering lead lines and buzzing bass rising above straightforward beats and a pulsating, arpeggiated bassline. Fine alternative takes are provided by Alex Aguayo (brighter and breezier) and James Rod (darker and chunkier), before Hoochie Coochie Papa returns with the crystalline lead lines, trance-inducing bass and sparkling synthesizers of "Musiikkitanssi". Dany Dorado remixes, re-imagining it as a sludgy and hypnotic throb-job.
Review: Debutant Devakuo has yet to make his mark in music, though last year he did provide some beats for a Spanish hip-hop album by Madrid-based MC Rayden. "Trippin" is his first solo single, and it's really rather good. In its original form, the track features a quirky, heavily accented male vocal riding a mixture of tipsy, drunken synth sounds, similarly woozy chords and dusty, head-nodding hip-hop beats. The "C'mon Mix" that follows re-casts the track as a bass-heavy, percussive chunk of eccentric house rich in jazz-funk flourishes, while the Alieto Destiny Flow Remix sits somewhere between chugging nu-disco and rushing neo-trance. To complete the packafe, Cloon re-imagines the track as a slab of quesy late night electro.
Review: Following appearances on Paper Disco and Nein, From Beyond transfers to James Rod's Golden Soul imprint. The London-based artist offers up two original tracks, which come accompanied by a pair of remixes each. "Body Resonance" is an ear-pleasing slab of colourful, mid-tempo nu-disco laden with bold synthesizer melodies, sparkling electronics and undulating acid lines, while "Wave Sequence" sees From Beyond pepper a metronomic analogue bassline with razor sharp funk-rock guitar riffs, bubbly acid lines and waves of sleazy electronics. James Rod's reworks of that track are worth a listen, particularly the chugging, acid-heavy late-night flex of the "Darkness Dub". If that doesn't float your boat, Aleito's rising and falling revision of "Body Resonance" features some deliciously loved-up new melodies and a sparkling, synth-heavy vibe.
Review: Spanish nu-disco label Golden Soul call on the services of the mysterious Sportello, then get Azaria and James Rod in to take care of remix duties. They're billing it as 'Italo' but the Original Mix comes on more like a cross between nu-disco and progressive/melodic house - an unusual fusion that's arguably more interesting than slavish early 80s pastiche anyway! Azaria's refix has a heavyweight druggy, chuggy feel, leaving only the James Rod Remix to bring Italo lovers the dose of glacial analogue synths they've been fiending for. The hummability factor may be low but these tracks will sound great at 3am in dark rooms.
Review: Back in November 2019, Golden Soul Records chief James "Rod" Rodriguez released "Italoatomical Gems", a tidy collection of re-edits of largely lesser-known Italo-disco gems that the Spanish producer had subtly tooled-up and taken in a different direction. He's at it again on this hastily released single, which was produced in isolation during Spain's COVID-19 lockdown. There's plenty to set the pulse racing, not least the throbbing, delay-laden late night pressure of "Skyler", where pulsing deep space chords and slivers of melody rise above a chugging, arpeggio-driven electronic groove. Elsewhere, "Out The Invaders" is a little darker and moodier in tone, with reggae style stabs and plenty of glassy-eyed electronic flourishes, while EP opener "Two Heads Are Better" is a stripped-back, faintly foreboding throb-job.
Review: 'Haerum', the debut release from young South Korean producer Boudhicca, first emerged last year as part of a split EP with June Hyeong Kim on his studio.weather label. Now Spanish nu-disco don James Rod licenses the track to his Golden Soul label, complimenting the ambient-leaning melodic techno vibes of the Original with a sleazy, synth-y Eurodisco rework of his own that sounds like it's rushed here straight from 1984, and drafting in fellow glitterball-botherer Daniel Monaco to provide his own darker, more Italo-inspired and far more understated alternative version. Dancing will ensue, mark our words!
Review: Thicker than clotted cream and twice as opulent, Golden Soul's latest label retrospective is well worth your attention. It focuses on material released by the Spanish imprint in 2019, which was arguably the label's strongest year to date. Label founder James Rod makes a number of killer contributions, with the colourful, bass-heavy Balearic nu-disco chug of "Let's Play Together" (a collaboration with Parissior) and the dreamy Italo-disco throb of "Heart Rock (Aleito Mix)" standing out. Elsewhere, get your ears around the sparkling, breakdown-boasting sunrise rush of Dubhouser's "Ereh" and the thrill-a-minute Euro-disco effervescence that is Hoochie Coochie Papa's "Work My Body".
Review: Disco is just the departure point for this varied three-tracker from Steve Cooper, a British producer who's now based in Australia. The original of 'Bass Update' is a chuggy, throbbing affair that sits somewhere between Italo-disco and the more commercial likes of Lipps Inc, but the remix from Manuel Costela flips the script completely, adding breakbeats and a vague air of menace to leave it sounding like nothing so much as classic mid-00s Plumps tackle. 'What U Want' then makes use of a familiar vocal sample as it plays us out on a more driving, housed-up note.
Review: Dark, hypnotic disco grooves are the order of the day on this EP from Tiempo de Maldad. The Original centres around a throbbing, pulsing synth bassline atop which a range of other synth sounds from the musical to the metallic vie for your attention. Azaria's remix beefs up the kicks and has a proggy feel, Aleito's adds a hefty dose of space/sci-fi sounds, Daniel Monaco's more angular, aggressive rub will suit the indie-dance floors (it'd be a dead cert at Nag Nag Nag if that was still going!) while finally the Lusca Remix is a heavy-duty Italo pounder, aimed at dark 3am floors and augmented by some acid squelch.
Review: Golden Soul Records is an independent label based in Spain which specialises in rare classics reinterpreted for modern dancefloors. Following up some great EPs by the likes of Lusca and Daniel Monaco, they now have Huelva-based Alex Morgan aka Aleito on board for their 42nd release. Features the evocative lo-slung and discofied soul of "Always Here", as well as some emotive minimal house that's perfect for the afterhours as heard on "Eso Rhythm ''. Closing out this impressive EP is the slinky and hypnotic tech house journey "Mazalan" which is as moody as you like it. A diverse affair over its three tracks, representative of the consistent quality coming from James Rod's label.
Review: In recent times, James Rodriguez Navarro (that's James Rod to you and me) has rightly saved his best material for the Golden Soul label he launched way back in 2015. There's naturally much to admire on the Spanish producer's first outing of 2020, from the hybrid nu-disco/deep house/Italo-disco throb of the decidedly spacey opener "Special Rod Paradise" - check the delay-laden guitar motifs and intergalactic synth flourishes - to the filter-heavy driving house vibes of closing cut "Marthian", where squally trumpet solos rise from the abyss to catch the ear. The track sandwiched in between, Latin-tinged deep disco-house bumper "Paralatino", is also rather good.
Review: Alexander Koning is held in high regard within the tech-house scene, so it's something of a surprise to see him debuting on Golden Soul with a brand new Italo-disco-fired project, Love In Colour. In its original form, "Are You Alright" is decidedly driving, with Koning successfully wrapping boogie synths, disco-funk guitars and disco-house style vocal snippets around a thrusting, Italo-style arpeggio bassline. Koning moves further towards disco-house pastures on the cut-up, sample-heavy French touch madness of "Are You Alwrong". That cut also gets the remix treatment courtesy of Golden Soul stalwart James Rod, whose filter-soaked "Vocal Madness House Remix" certainly lives up to the promise of its' title.
Review: Mexican produer Estuardo Flores, better known as Lusca, comes to Spanish label Golden Soul with the latest example of what his bio calls his "slower, darker acid disco". In its original form, 'Lost In Thar' (feat Mil Y Nadie) is a slo-mo chugger made up mostly of Italo-esque synths, and powered along by a hard-hitting kickdrum. The Jb Dizzy Remix ups the tempo considerably, and indeed could work in progressive/melodic house sets, while the final remix comes from James Rod, who takes us down an even more dark and apocalyptic path than the original. A track to dance to at the end of the days.
Review: We're not sure who Hoochie Coochie Papa is - or are, as it may be more than one producer - but this first outing on Golden Soul is pretty darn good. "Work Me Body" is a deliciously sweaty and throbbing affair; a contemporary take on Italo-disco and mid 1980s Hi-NRG rich in arpeggio style synth-bass, spacey electronic melodies, sampled male vocal snippets and glassy-eyed chords. The first of two accompanying remixes comes courtesy of Spanish scene stalwart James Rod, who adds insatiable cowbells while stripping the cut back to its' muscular, arpeggio-driven core. To round things off, man of the moment Andy Buchan re-imagines "Work Your Body" as an ear-catching tribute to Giorgio Moroder's production work on Donna Summer's "I Feel Love".
Review: Synth-tastic nu disco is the order of the day on this latest despatch from Spanish producer Jaime Rodr?guez Navarro, better known as James Rod, which comes on his own Golden Soul label. His original marries an Italo-esque synth throb to rolling nu disco beats and occasional western/Mexican-style horn fanfares. Azaria's remix doesn't flip the script too much, but does up the tempo a notch and beef up the bottom end; the Aleito Remix is a little sparser and nudges towards progressive house territory, while the Rayko & James Rod Remix drops the tempo slightly to give the track a druggier, chuggier feel.
Review: Clad head to toe in his finest carnival threads, Golden Soul Records chief James Rodriguez grabs his scalpel and sets to work on a second selection of lesser-known Brazilian music gems. Opener "You Are Me Dream (Sambasoul Re-edit)" is a near perfect revision of a breezy, sun-kissed Brazilian gem, with Rodriguez brilliantly combining summery samba-disco samples with an elastic drumbeat and restless funky acid motifs. "Pernangola (Boogie Groove Re-edit)" is a loopier, chunkier and more obviously bass-heavy affair built around jangly samples from what sounds like a samba-folk record, while "Minsumbobo" is a bouncy re-interpretation of a Brazilian P-funk work out rich in kaleidoscopic synthesizer lines, Bootsy style bass and swirling electronic effects.
Review: For his latest outing on Golden Soul, James Rod has decided to pay tribute to Italian dance music in his own special way. First up is "Cootutto (Italian Boogie Madness Edit)", a loopy, head-nodding and toe-tapping tweak of what sounds like an early '80s Italian tribute to George Clinton/Bootsy Collins style P-funk. "Splendido Splendente (Rettore Super-House Re-Edit)" offers a more forthright and funky excursion into loopy, filtered disco-house territory, while closing cut "Ok OK (Italo-House Re-Edit)" re-invents a chiming chunk of synth-powered boogie as a kaleidoscopic romp through nu-disco/peak-time house fusion.
Review: Pato Watson and James Rod think that nu-disco has had its day. Instead, they've decided to champion "Disco Nu". So how does it differ to the shiny, synth-laden sound of nu-disco? Well, for starters its' dark and driving, with echo-laden spoken word snippets and trippy guitar sounds rising above unfussy drums and a bassline that's powerful, heavy, druggy and thrusting. There are synth riffs, too, though they're sharper than your average nu-disco workout. Tony Disco delivers the first remix, a low-slung affair that wraps breezy house pianos round a no-nonsense disco-house groove. In contrast, the "Deep Rating Version" is a delay-laden dub disco excursion rich in sustained synthesizer chords, crashing cymbals and elastic bass. All three versions are top-notch, though we probably prefer the latter.
Review: Debutant Dubhouser doesn't seem all that keen on offering up information, with the producer's slim online presence offering no clues to his or her identity. If the intention is to let his or her music do the talking, the "Ereh EP" certainly ticks all the right boxes. Opener "Avirt" is a pleasingly chugging, mind-altering affair where echoing electronic motifs and effects-laden noises bubble away above a heavy, locked-in groove. "Ereh" is a slightly trancey chunk of heady nu-disco rich in woozy synthensizer riffs, bass-heavy grooves and trippy electronic flourishes, while closing cut "Rolod" is a late night dub house shuffler full of hypnotic beats, flashing acid lines, gentle synthesizer riffs and dub-wise effects.
Review: In normal circumstances, we'd be a little worried if someone served us "Golden Cream". We know we're safe in the hands of DJ/producer James Rodriguez though, with the compilation representing the cream of the crop from the Spanish producer's Golden Soul Records imprint. There's naturally much to enjoy across the 17-track collection, with Rodriguez opting for cuts that flit between kaliedoscopic nu-disco headiness (Italo Brutalo's remix of his and Disco Doubles' "White Sands"), Clavinet-happy acid disco chunkiness ("Crazy Bass" by The Players and DJ Steevo), elastic electrofunk with a Middle Eastern flavour (Dim Zach's remix of JB Dizzy's "Transistor"), driving late night intensity (Los Fugazi's "Afterglow (Flxxx Remix)", peak-time piano fun (Get Down Edits glistening remix of Slync's loved-up "Neon") and rushing disco goodness ("Tradlord" by Call Me Classic).
Review: For the second time in as many weeks, James Rod (real name James Rodriguez) has his scalpel out. Last time out, it was all about gentling tooling up American and European disco-boogie records; this time around, the Spaniard has his wicked way with a trio of sun-kissed Brazilian jams of the late 1970s and early '80s. First up is "Paico", a chunky revision of a breezy, horn-heavy samba-disco number that Rodriguez has brought bang up to date with the addition of dub delays, lolloping drums, and a thickset synth bassline. The arguably superior "Ela Disco" brilliantly dubs out an electrofunk era chunk of Brazilian disco brilliance, while "Latin Life" is a filter-sporting slab of mid-tempo disco-house chug rich in jangling guitar riffs and insanely heavy bass.
Review: While he's released some killer original productions over the years, most of which fit into the "synth-heavy nu-disco" category, James 'Rod" Rodriguez's re-edits have consistently been amongst the best around. Predictably, there's plenty to set the pulse racing amongst the Spaniard's latest batch of tried-and-tested reworks. We're particularly enjoying opener "Fornur Love", a peak-time disco bubbler made extra-potent thanks to Rodriguez's addition of a killer new acid bassline. "Groovin On Boogie" is arguably even heavier, with Rodriguez successfully sticking a rocket under a bouncy, horn-heavy disco smasher, while the undulating acid style bass returns with a vengeance on the '80s disco grandiosity of closing cut "Running Of My Love" [sic].
Review: Spanish producer Manuel Costela has been on a serious roll of late, and this latest release on Golden Soul does nothing to diminish his fast-growing reputation. There are two re-rubs of 'Interestellar Love' to choose from here: Limpodisco's take emphasises the track's rawer, more organic elements, with mucho application of Hammond organ and fat, squelchy funk bass, while James Rod's mix takes us into more stomping disco-house territory with hard-slammin' 4/4s and a disco-style walking bassline. Both rubs come fully laden with pyow-pyow-pyow! space disco stabs, practically guaranteeing the throwing of shapes out on the floor.
Review: After exchanging admiring glances across the Iberian Peninsula, Spanish producers James Rod and Parissior have finally decided to "play together". Happily, Golden Soul has decided to share the results of their shared studio labours. Very good they are, too, with the original collaborative mix of "Let's Play Together" wrapping trippy, delay-laden, NYC freestyle-inspired synthesizer motifs around an arpeggio-driven groove that sits somewhere between Giorgio Moroder and cheeky Italo-disco. On his solo rework, Parissor drags the track further towards druggy, bass-heavy nu-disco territory, while Rod's revision adds extra layers of real disco flavours while wisely pushing the bassline and synthesizer motifs to the fore.
Review: It's been a while since we last heard from Adrian Molinar, a Mexican DJ/producer who impressed with a fine 2015 debut on Tom Tom Disco. In fact, our research that this is Molinar's first single for at least three years. "Cymatic" is deliciously psychedelic and mind-altering, with Molinar wrapping ragged and undulating TB-303 style acid lines around a driving electronic groove that sits somewhere between jacking house and fizzing nu-disco. James Rod takes the track in an entirely different direction on his accompanying remix, which peppers Molinar's thrusting groove with flash-fried funk guitars and punchy, 8-bit electronics. The EP also contains a stab-happy revision by Pato Watson that's rich in the kind of razor-sharp riffs that we've always associated with "Brown Album"-era Orbital.
Review: Prolific producer Manuel Costela is clearly a fan of long-distance relationships. Certainly, there are few longer relationships than those forged from "Interstellar Love". The track itself does make a good case for supernova romance, though, layering litlting, loved-up synthesizer lead lines above a rolling disco groove rich in rubbery bass, laytered spoken vocal samples and glistening, Chic style guitars. Parisior opts for a looser, warmer dub disco feel on his accompanying remix, throwing funk-rock riffs into the mix to add a little more grunt, before JB Dizzy re-imagines "Interstellar Love" as a twisted fusion of rolling nu-disco grooves and wild TB-303 style acid lines.