Review: Having risen to prominence with a string of releases on the Whities imprint, Lanark Artefax aka Calum MacRae now spreads his wings with a releae on Numbers. "Cora Linn" is a wild mixture of Venetian Snares-style percussive intensity underpinned by a throbbing, powerful bass and cinematic synths. On "Moo Orphaned Drift", MacRae deploys similarly noisy percussive elements, but this time he uses them as a basis for mournful melodies and tempo shifting rhythms that are redolent of his previous, Aphex Twin-influenced records. Rounding off yet another highly distinctive Lanark Artefax record, is the spooky piano soundtrack and twisted vocal samples of "Ferthenheap".
Review: As ever with Numbers, we embrace a wide collection of sounds and influences in this latest full length album project they have unveiled from Complete Walkthru entitled 'Scrolls', featuring 11 saucy original creations. From the more contemporary rhythmic ideas of 'Believe I Can Do This' and 'Lean In' to the soundscape lead themes of 'Leavin' Church Early', this one is dripping in colourful delights, oozing class from start to finish. For us there are a few clear highlights, with the soulful harmonics of 'Cardio' being an immediate standout, alongside the rolling drums of 'Getting Ridiculous' and stunning synthy landscapes of 'Just Like We Like It'.
Review: We were very excited to get involved with this one as Numbers bring together this top draw seven track masterclass from Perko, showcasing just how versatile he can be as a producer. We explore the weird and wonderful throughout, with tracks such as a 'Water Memory', 'Polly' and 'Grace' giving us epicly soundscaped backdrops, whilst 'Rounded' and 'What Otters' provide us with a more rhythmic base, still being packed full of harmonic energy. The subtle 4x4
drum beats of 'Songbirds' then gives us a very unique sense of urgency, with the creamy arpeggiators of 'Sky Host' soothing us over. Very creative stuff indeed!
Review: Long before he began work on the collaborative Tiger & Woods project, Marco Passarani was much loved for his solo productions, which effortlessly joined the dots between techno, electro, Italo-disco and synth-funk. Analog Fingerprints, his first solo single since 2011, is a thrilling blast from the past. Those who dug his earlier productions on Nature will love the thrilling alien synthesizer motifs, sweaty drums and throbbing acid flashes of "Quarto" - think vintage R&S Records stompers fused with wild electronic disco abandon - while "Tribalonios" feels like a long-lost new beat slammer pitched up to suit house clubs. For those who fancy a cheery chunk of synthesizer-heavy dancefloor bliss, opener "Wonky Wonky Wonky" should more than tick those boxes.
Review: Bryan Kessler has already released on labels like Get Physical, but this outing for Numbers really sees him prove his worth as a techno producer. The emphasis here is on grimy warehouse techno; it starts with the woozy chords and insistent stabs of "Super Boo" before heading into a scuzzy direction on "Hi How Are You", where dollops of dirty bass and some crowd whoops prevail. Air raid sirens, train shrieks and tough drums come together to create a killer title track and it's only on the final track "Power Flower'' - where Kessler rattles snares over a toy-town synth - that some sense of melody appears.
Review: Manchester's Kevin Gorman really found his sound with the Adesse Versions project, mixing the dark and techy sensibilities of his old Mikrowave imprint with his love of house music to stunning effect. "That's What Friends Are For" is testament to this, featuring seductive vocals used sparingly backed by dark strings and a razor sharp bassline that'll set any dancefloor on fire. The dub version up next is quite handy for those of you not keen on the vox. "In The Sticks" injects some latin flair with layer upon layer of rich and exotic percussion not limited to steel drums and congas with some rich synth tapestries to boot. The kind of track you could imagine Derrick May or Laurent Garnier playing mid set; it's a sweet one.
Review: It would be fair to say that both of Denis Sulta's EP singles on Dixon Avenue Basement Jams are "in-demand". It's likely that this first outing on Numbers - a single-track salvo - will go the same way. It's typically of his analogue-rich, retro-futurist sound, with starry, Detroit-influenced synth lines and intergalactic melodies riding a virtual wave of drum machine hits and skittish cymbals. It feels like an early '90s British experiment in fusing the best of house and techno, but that's no bad thing. It's certainly bristling with late night positivity.
Review: Former Optimo [Espacio] studio collaborator Dave Clark has impressed since re-launching his little-known '90s production alias, Sparky, for Numbers. His 2013 doublepack, Portland, has been remixed multiple times, while his recent Tapes release for Rubadub - based on rediscovered recordings from 1994 - has been getting plenty of heat. Here he delivers two new tracks, beginning with the sprightly, synthesizer-heavy Italo-disco-meets-Detroit techno workout "Signals". Full of shimmering synth lines, bubbling bottom end and attractive melodic hooks, it's arguably his most accessible track to date. Then "Tigress", an aggressive, distorted and altogether more robust dancefloor shuffler seemingly influenced by both classic loop techno and '80s industrial funk.
Review: Given their previously proclaimed love of ghetto house and its' various similarly minded offshoots, its little surprise to find Glasgow's Numbers crew putting out a "greatest hits" EP from long-serving Chicago producer (and former Dance Mania regular) DJ Deeon. The four cuts that make up Deeon Doez Deeon are not necessarily meant to be his finest moments - though they are all killer - but instead represent the Numbers' crew's favourites. There's plenty to get excited about, from the organ craziness, bumpin' beats and classic disco vocals of "2 Be Free" and blistering "House-O-Matic", to the classic, cut-up vocals and stuttering, ghetto rhythms of "Freak Like Me" (first released way back in 1996).
Review: Back in 2012, Glasgow operation put their reissue hats on to present a new edition of Multi Ordinal Tracking Unit, "a secret weapon and personal favourite" from late 90s UK techno types Unspecified Enemies that the label's founders all experienced in their formative years at Club 69. Some two years on and with Numbers now a globally recognised label, unreleased material from Unspecified Enemies pair Louis Digital and CiM features as the label's final release of 2014. Lead cuts "Ms.45" and "Chip Mode" have been sourced from a tape CiM and Digital sent to Rubadub back in '99 with DJ Chip's Dancemania classic Imported Booty Music the apparent influence here. It's quite evident too in the frenzied and furious tempo Unspecified Enemies implement throughout the record with the final superbly titled "Lifestyles Of The MiniDisc Era" a real fckn highlight.
Review: Whereas Redinho's early work was marked by an ability to work quickly while fusing grime, hip-hop, dubstep and wonk-hop influences, this debut album - some three years in the making - is a much more vibrant, considered and kaleidoscopic affair. Using the distinctive, Rustie-influenced pulse of Glaswegian beat science as his canvas, Redinho paints colourful aural images that doff an oversized snapback to '80s boogie, early electro and intergalactic electronica. That means vivid synthesizers, skittering rhythms, blissful melodies and lashings of unmistakeable talkbox vocals. The results are surprisingly soulful and always enticing, making Redinho a particularly assured and impressive full-length debut.
Review: Always adept at delivering hooky, attention-grabbing house music for all manner of crowds, Doc Daneeka is at once more for Numbers, with the piano-led charge of "Treptow" marking a particularly direct approach for the producer. Using a one-chord stab throughout, Daneeka clearly knows a thing or two about making the most out of a few core elements in this finely balanced deep house tryst. "Paname (Piano Version)" on the other hand has a more leftfield line in rasping percussion arranged into sharp lines of rhythm, while the titular piano lingers more in the distance compared to the lead tune.
Review: "Minger": Ace title, naughty beats. All spiked out and fist-thrusting, it's charged with a surging sense of raw drama and driven by nifty, unpredictable drum dynamics with cool amen fills spluttering in and out of the mix. "Yeah Yeah Yeah (Dun Know)" provides a neat contrast; crisp, chilled and breathy, it's the soothing sexy yin to "Minger"'s raging ugly yang. A highly comprehensive release. But we'd expect nothing less from both Numbers and Danny Brown affiliate Darq E Freaker.
Review: UK producer Deadboy will always be synonymous with Jackmaster's Numbers label, having inaugurated it back in 2010 with the one sided If U Want Me 12" back in 2010. It's fair to say Numbers rise since then has been stratospheric, and along the way they managed to coax more killer dancefloor material out of man like Deadboy on a roughly annual basis. The suitably titled Return offers a true display of Deadboy's production palette, with a title track that could feasibly suit a film soundtrack. "Des Niles" meanwhile is reminiscent of the 16bit club stylings of label mate Redinho, while there are further classic Deadboy hybrid dancefloor slayers in the form of "YHVH" and "Life Code".
Review: While by no means as prolific in their output as last year, the quality of Numbers releases this year has remained a constant. Here the Glasgow operation reissues what they describe as "a secret weapon and personal favourite" in "Multi Ordinal Tracking Unit" from late 90s techno outfit Unspecified Enemies. The lengths the label have gone to in order to secure this reissue makes us think Jackmaster and co. set up Numbers with the specific intention of one day having the release in their discography. Made with the most basic of equipment in a North East London bedroom by the duo of Simon Whalley and Louis Digital, "Multi Ordinal Tracking Unit" was subsequently embraced by everyone from Underground Resistance to Surgeon. Crucially, Rubadub's Club 69 resident Martin McKay also caned it and ingrained it in the young memories of the Numbers troupe. Fully remastered by original cutting engineer, Christoph Grote-Beverborg at Dubplates & Mastering, the track retains all it's hard edged funk today and comes backed with a "City Of Quartz" remix from Louis Digital himself. The digital version includes two further gems, both originally produced for Digital's City Of Quartz label, but unreleased until now - "Bellona: Do I Mind Dying", a piece of razor-edged techno cut through with dystopian pads, and "Insurgency Soul", a piece of precise, clean breakbeat house reminiscent of Mark Fell's recent experiments in the genre.