Faking Jazz Together (Michael Mayer remix) - (8:08) 124 BPM
Faking Jazz Together (Tom Furse remix) - (6:25) 81 BPM
Review: Occasionally a remix comes along that just seems perfect. This remix of Connan Mockasin's "Faking Jazz Together" by Michael Mayer most definitely falls into this category, the Kompakt boss expertly retaining the idiosyncrasies of Mockasin's track but melding them with a truly sumptuous arrangement. At eight minutes long it still feels like it could go on forever without losing any of its enchanting warmth and impact. The Phantasy Sound label has scored some really interesting releases and remixers to date, but Mayer's remix can be considered a true highlight. Worth the price alone, Phantasy include an extended version of the original's psychedelic cocktail jazz refrain on this release along with a remix from The Horrors' Tom Furse. Whilst not close to the heights of Mayer's remix, Furse does a fine job of retaining the rattling sensation of the original whilst rewiring the mainframe with EBM overtones.
Review: Nathan Gregory Wilkins and Richard X are back under their awesome Cowboy Rhythmbox guise where the two London legends serve up some more of their typically retroactive indie dance grooves. The second track taken from their Tanz Exotique EP is the darkly seductive dancefloor drama of "Ctsa Invasion" featuring some militaristic '80's drum grooves beneath tunneling bleep melody and some nasty bass pulsations that signal a switch of gears in the selectors set. Speaking of which: we'd imagine the likes of Ivan Smagghe, Jennifer Cardini or Barnt smashing this killer out in the latter part of 2017.
Review: The build-up to Wilkins & X's latest Cowboy Rhythmbox EP has been smouldering throughout the summer with mischievous one-track dispatches. First came the jittering technoid EBM pulsations and analog grit of "Scream", then came the soothing harmonic wooziness and concrete shattering 80s drum machine beats of "Catsa Invasion", a tune laced with toxic textures and a subtle sense of industrial euphoria. Now we have "Tanz Exotique", an obscene slab of bleep-funked electro that's all glitched, subverted and supercharged with energy and detail. Strong enough to be filed next to your Soulwax records.
Review: One-track affair from Erol Alkan's Phantasy Sound that pits the Cowboy Rhythmbox project of Richard X and Nathan Gregory Wilkins up against the production skills of Livity Sound main man Kowton. First released last year, the original version of "Fantasma" summed up the project's slightly tongue in cheek approach, pairing outlandish synth motifs with thundering percussive excess and thick EBM basslines. It was understandably a hit with the Comeme crew and it's likely Kowton's remix will crossover into many DJ sets too. The Livity man remains quite faithful to Cowboy Rhythmbox's intentions, but cranks the pressure up somewhat for a near-perfect five minute DJ tool.
Review: Nathan Wilkins hooks up with Richard X again for the third Cowboy Rhythmbox outing on Erol Alkan's label. The title track is a stop-start jacking affair that resounds to a rude electronic bass. It's exactly the kind of upfront track one would expect to hear in one of the label owner's DJ sets. In stark contrast is "Children of the Monolith"; slower, dreamier and more complex, it features hypnotic chants unfolding over a mid-tempo tribal groove. The duo returns to the dance floor for "Soda Jerk". While not quite a direct as the title track, its relentless pulse and filtered percussion make it just as effective.
Review: New material from UK producer Daniel Avery has been scarce of late - is he living in the shadow of Drone Logic? On the strength of Sensation / Clear, this would appear not to be the case. The former is a mid-tempo, teased out groove, wrapped in trance synths and underpinned by plodding drums. It shows that Avery is master of crafting slow-building grooves, but it only plays a supporting role compared to "Clear". Faster and more tranced out, its warbling bass and whooshing melodies sound inspired by classic Juan Atkins and Derrick May, but fashioned in the blurry metropolis that is London.
Review: The romping stomping Daniel Avery, is back on Phantasy Sound with a new two-track 12" which doubles up as the label's 50th, and continues the English producer and DJ's path down a streamlined, hard-edge techno path. Unsurprisingly, "Sensation" is a total juggernaut, a heady techno track that slithers its percussion sway amid huge mounds of delays and atmospherics. Over on the flip, "Clear" sticks to a techno formula insofar as its mid-to-fast tempo, but the melodies and chimes emanating from its underbelly are something wilder and altogether more ethereal. Conniving DJ tools!
Review: Hot on the heels of the album that has cemented his presence on the house and techno circuit, Daniel Avery has been foisted up onto Phantasy Sound's mast one more time with the All I Need single providing a few useful alternative cuts to the original long player tracks on Drone Logic. "All I Need" comes in a clean form that sounds largely like that on the album, all bold punches of synth and solid drum machine hits. Danny Daze takes a radical new route with his version of "Naive Response" that takes the playful bleeps and blurps of the original and strips away the warmth to leave a cold and grubby roller in its place. The "Club Edit" of "Free Floating" does well to keep the wistful qualities of the original intact and simply work some extra limber beats into appropriate junctures.
Review: He's not the most prolific electronic music producer, but Erol Alkan is certainly one of the most distinctive. For once though, he cedes control to two fellow mavericks for remixes of last year's Spectrum release on Phantasy. Mano Le Tough's version sees the Irish producer add some spacey sound scapes and cascading filters to Alkan's French Kiss-on-acid original. It makes for a vivid, out there version, replete with slowed-down drops and build ups. Baris K is also tasked with reworking "Spectrum" and he opts for a more esoteric approach, dropping a sub-aquatic disco groove with a touch of eastern mystery embedded in the arrangement.
Review: All the aspects you could possibly want from two London legends of the scene here in Paul Woolford's Special Request mixes of Beyond The Wizard's Sleeve, Erol Alkan. This extra special suite follows previous remixes of the same single from Mano le Tough, Matrixxman and Machine Woman of Alkan's latest solo release for Phantasy Sound. Like the aforementioned, Woolford's Special Request project opts for the synthesized rave chords and deeper melodies of "Spectrum", with the 'Kaleidoscope' mix plunging deeper into bassline territory while the 'Double Vision' mix goes hard on the phasers for a stripped back dub version of hissing snares and white noise. Arpeggio heaven.
Review: This is Erol Alkan's first solo material in about half a decade, and fans of the veteran DJ are in for a treat. "Spectrum" is a loopy, acidic affair that is caked in the kind of gritty basement vibes that defined his residency at the infamous Trash. In stark contrast is "Silver Echoes". It may come as a surprise to some that Alkan is adept at making more purist techno, but its building, fluid chords and tight, angular rhythm show that he is every bit as talented as some of the form's most revered practitioners. It leaves the listener guessing as to what this iconic artist will try next.
Review: Ghost Culture is UK producer James Greenwood who back in 2012 got singed to Phantasy on the strength of one track on Soundlcoud and the rest as they say.. is history. He's now a staple of the London label with nearly a dozen releases thus far to his name and the Nucleus EP sees the young producer hone his sound further more although it still sits in the interesting space between acid house, EBM and techno. There's a certain sense of soul and emotion throughout. Highlights on here are the bittersweet electro of "ICO130" and "NGC1275" respectively, while the deep broken beat house of "NGC1265" offers a change of aesthetic while still exploring some sublime vintage synth textures like the rest of the tracks. Great effort!