Review: Bristol's Shall Not Fade presents a new DJ mix by Polish producer Bartosz Kruczynski aka Earth Trax, who just last week dropped his third LP for the label - The Sensual World. The 13-tracker saw the Warsaw-based producer prove himself as one of the most versatile and consistent producers in the game. This hour long continuous mix, however, proves his abilities behind the decks and comes also the individual tracks. Some of the highlights not limited to: the understated stomp of Trudge's emotive "When The Rain", the airy electro of Tom Vernon's "Disappear" or the ever reliable Harrison BDP taking you aboard the acid express on "Immortal", as well as the mandatory Earth Trax cuts "Trust Me" (dub mix,) "Fireflies" and "Dream Pop".
Alan Fitzpatrick & DJ Deeon - "Shake That Thang" - (4:37) 130 BPM
Alan Fitzpatrick & DJ Deeon - "Shake That Thang" (DJOKO remix) - (6:29) 130 BPM
Learning To Love - (7:02) 130 BPM
Review: Over the last 15 years, few producers have released quite as much high-quality dancefloor fare as Alan Fitzpatrick. Somewhat predictably, his latest EP - a label debut for Bristol-based imprint Shall Not Fade - is another must-check missive. He's scored something of a coup, too, by recruiting Chicago 'ghetto-dance' legend DJ Deeon to add his evocative spoken word vocals to 'Shake That Thing', a deliciously spacey chunk of analogue house brilliance whose evocative chords and restless rhythm track will bring joy to many dancefloors this summer. Rising star DJOKO remixes, doffing a cap to the early 2000s work of UK tech-house stalwarts Swag on a deliciously swinging, loose-limbed rub. Fitzpatrick then delivers a bouncy, life-affirming chunk of disco-house hedonism, 'Learning to Love', which is pure pleasure from start to finish.
Review: Whenever we see the Shall Not Fade title hovering above a new LP project, we get very excited here at JunoDownload. This is with good reason as Jaymie Silk arrives with a sumptuous display of electronic mastery entitled 'The Rise & Fall Of Jaymie Silk & Rave Culture', exploring the most broad spectrum of electronic production. We open up with the eerie vocal effects and shuffling rhythms of ;Freedom For Everybody', which sets the tone very well amidst a bed of 808 stabs and glitchy fx, before the more euphoric shuffling breaks of 'The Heat' and intense dancefloor stabs of 'Stop Singing, Start Swinging' are let loose. That feeling of nostalgic euphoria then returns as 'Party Downstairs' really does get the party started, followed closely by the more moogy textures of 'Bad B' and post-funky influenced drum designs of 'Cats Love Drums'. We then explore two final heaters, with the gorgeous vocal processing and carnival-like drum structures of 'Waiting For The Day' and super lofi arrangements of 'Take Time To Breathe' closing out the project with some serious style. Awesome work!
Review: Following a brief sojourn on DOBRO, Paul Rudder continues his run of quietly impressive EPs on Shall Not Fade, which began with 2020's rather good Losing Dreams. He starts in stunning fashion this time round with 'Night Ocean', a bouncy and rolling slab of glassy-eyed deep house futurism smothered in shimmering si-fi synths, before opting for a slightly more bright, bubbly and rubbery sound on 'Unknown Future'. 'Storm Pattern' is an enveloping, ultra-deep excursion blessed with a locked-in, dub-fired deep house groove, while 'Variable Star' is a more sub-heavy slab of picturesque dancefloor deepness. He concludes with 'Goodbye Planet', a hypnotic drift into the kind of womb-like, after-hours fare we've long associated with DJ Sprinkles.
Review: Sometime Pont Neuf contributor Tour-Mauborg (real name Pierre d'Estienne d'Orves) can usually be relied upon to hit the right notes. He's certainly made all the right moves on Woodfloor Dubs, an attractive six-track affair that marks the producer's first EP for Bristol's prolific Shall Not Fade label. While rooted in deep house, it's a mixed bag musically. For proof compare, and contrast, the deliciously deep and hazy 'Dub 002', the disco-influenced, warming dancefloor colour of 'Dub 001' and the happy-go-lucky afternoon breeze of 'Simpler Days'. The EP also includes two collaborations with Cosmonection: the quietly jazzy shuffle of 'Dub 003' (which also features contributions from Marc Bianco) and the trippy, locked-in haziness of 'Dub 004'.
Review: The latest release on Shall Not Fade's occasional Season Series of EPs comes courtesy of long-established Spanish producer Carlo, whose largely upbeat, escapist dancefloor workouts were apparently recorded in response to "urban seclusion" (lockdowns, basically). There's plenty to admire across the five-tracker, with the Berlin-based artist skipping between bouncy deep house funk ('Sensitive Response'), ear-catching deep synth-pop/deep house fusion (the tactile and spacey 'Where Is Everybody?'), wonky-but-locked-in late-night hypnotism (stand-out 'Noche') and trippy, disco-tinged peak-time sweatiness ('Moving Forward'). The included collaboration with fellow underground hero Retromigration, the ultra-deep 'Earth Two', is also superb.
Review: Dutch dudes Fouk have released music on a variety of much-loved labels - think Heist, House of Disco and Razor N Tape Reserve - so it's little surprise to see them turning up on another, Bristol's Shall Not Fade. Happily, they've brought their A-game too, with title track 'Paradise' offering an intriguing percussive, off-kilter fusion of Latin house beats, bold piano riffs, tropical flourishes and sultry synth strings. 'Next Summer' is a colourful, laidback and gently warming deep house shuffler, while 'Tough Love' and 'Late Night Snack' both doff a cap to Boompty-era Derrick Carter and the Greenskeepers. 'Drugged Out', meanwhile, is disco-house after a few too many odd-looking and brightly coloured mushrooms.
Review: After a brief break to sling out a couple of 12" singles on his ownPleasant Systems imprint, Mainz man Tilman is back on Shall Not Fade. 'Touch Me Fantasy' is the German producer's fourth outing on the Bristol-based imprint and sees him sashay between tough but dreamy deep house (the ear-pleasing, huggable retro-futurism of 'Rewind Your Dreams'), keyboard solo-sporting turn-of-the-90s lusciousness (the NJ deep house-goes-to-Rimini flex of 'Clouds' and equally as luscious 'Mind Games') and raw, stripped-back proto-Chicago jack sleaziness ('Woman'). The EP also includes a fine collaboration with regular studio buddy Will Buck, 'Two The Max', which sits somewhere between early '90s Italian dream house and the late '80s deep house productions of former Newcleus man Ben Cemac.
Review: Since debuting on Belters in 2018 with a bouncy and melodious chunk of hip-house influenced deep house pleasantness, t e s t p r e s s has built their reputation via a string of self-released singles. Here the Glasgow-based duo debuts on Shall Not Fade with a trio of techno-tempo numbers shot through with sepia-tinted rave nostalgia. Opener 'Wil U Uptae' is a piano-sporting retro-futurist slammer that's as weighty as it is rush-inducing, while title track 'Tell Ya' is an even more surging and breathless slab of warehouse-ready techno of the sort that Shed's Head High project does so well. Best of all, though, is 140 BPM banger 'Joemama', where handclap-heavy beats, ragged acid riffs, layered percussion and cut-up hip-hop samples combine to devastating effect.
Review: Rising star Theos is undoubtedly a producer to watch in 2022. His Shall Not Fade debut, last year's We Miss The Crowd, was (rightly) widely acclaimed, and if anything this follow-up is even better. There's an effortlessly funkiness to all of the tracks on show, with crunchy and groovy house beats coming accompanied by jaunty synthesizer basslines and darting electronic motifs that sit somewhere between those used by Todd Edwards in his prime, and the late '90s work of techno-funk specialist Dave Angel. Our picks of a very strong bunch are 'Turn Up Marty' - all classic Korg M-1 organ stabs, swinging beats and Seinfeld-style fretless bass - and surging opener 'Captain Lulu'. We'd also suggest checking 'Odd Goblin' a deep slab of funk-fuelled liquid house co-produced by VieLaJoie.
Review: Rising star Paul Rudder returns to Shall Not Fade following fine outings on Berg Audio, Exploited Ghetto and House On Wax, this time with fellow one-to-watch Kresy in town. The pair deliver a pair of collaborative cuts: the warming, piano-rich old school US house optimism of 'Dance Like Forever' and the chunkier and more energetic - but no less loved-up or nostalgic 'Floating Penthouse'. Kresy also delivers two revisions of the latter tune, first re-framing it is a deep acid house bubbler before beefting up the beats and reaching for ambient techno sounds on the driving and ear-pleasing 'Uplifting Version'. As if that wasn't enough to se the pulse racing, Rudder's two solo excursions - the deep and loved-up 'Inside U' and the piano-driven rush of 'Dreamin' About' - are also ace.
Review: Shall Not Fade rounds off its busiest year to date with a sixth anniversary compilation that's packed to the rafters with previously unreleased tracks from its now sizable family of artists. Also reflective of the sounds showcased by Shall Not Fade's various sub-labels and offshoots, the 24-track set confidently strides between deep two-step (Black Loops), saucer-eyed ambient jungle (Kessler), colourful deep house (Lis Sarocca), lo-fi jack tracks (Cinthie), loopy disco-house (Adelphi Music Factory), jazz-funk flavoured house warmth (Felipe Gordon), analogue-rich broken beat (Yosh), post-UKG heaviness (DJ Crisps), jaunty and jazzy 4/4 garage (DJ Swagger) and the kind of smile-inducing, huggable dancefloor goodness that defies simple categorization (Tilman and Phonk D).
Review: During last year's numerous pandemic lockdowns, Theo Kottis found himself dreaming of sweaty, euphoric peak-time dancefloors. So much so, in fact, that he decided to join forces with "life and soul of the party" (his words) Busola and make something suitably excitable and anthemic. 'The Mirror' is undoubtedly a feelgood, party-hearty affair, with the pair peppering a bouncy, bass heavy old school house groove with spoken word snippets, MK style Korg M1 riffs, bold piano stabs and undulating analogue bass. Kottis solo cut 'Onda' is similarly cheery and carefree, with delay-laden piano riffs, gorgeous pads, jazzy Rhodes fills and stirring string samples rising above deeper bass and even crunchier, crisper drums.
Review: Spanish producer Hurlee has a decent track record of delivering the kind of heavy-but-tasteful deep house tracks that sound just as good at home on headphones as they do surging from club sound systems. He's at it again on Lonely Days, his first solo EP on Shall Not Fade. He hits the ground running with the title track, a tough and hypnotic number full of hazy, late-night stabs, dreamy pads and chunky bass, before opting for a more melodically expansive, synth-heavy sound on the swinging, peak-time bump of 'Discover Nights'. He continues in a similar vein on closing cut 'Tiny Bell', where woozy, sun-kissed pads, star-lit electronics and jazzy bass wrap around crunchy deep house drums.
Review: Ejeca's previous outing on Shall Not Fade, May 2021's Free From, was an impressively eclectic but steadfastly club-focused affair that boasted far more hits than misses. This five-track follow-up is equally as impressive. The Irish producer first doffs a cap to hard house, happy hardcore and mind-mangling acid techno on the rave-igniting madness of 'Take It', before going deeper and dreamier on the breathless, trance-inducing pump of 'Away'. 'Clunk' is a killer chunk of rap-free hip-house revivalism, 'Mallusk' is a high-octane electro number smothered in alien electronics and star gazing synthesizer chords, and 'Static' is a trippy, hard-to-pigeonhole number that sounds like acid-fired ambient techno on steroids. Brilliantly breathless stuff all told.
Review: Since making his debut in 2015, Laurence Guy has barely put a foot wrong. In the process, he's delivered a string of fine releases for the likes of Church, Mule Musiq, Cin Cin, Studio barnhus and, most frequently, Shall Not Fade. His latest EP for the latter label is another gem-filled treat. The EP's most potent dancefloor-centric moments - the stomping, saucer-eyed, dreamy deep house-goes-acid techno wonder that is 'Your Good Times Are Here' and the twisted, sample-heavy oddity that is 'Yeh Good, You?' - are simply superb, while the quirkier, more downtempo bonus cuts (mournful, reverb-heavy piano ambient number 'Mutual Disappointment is a Terrible Thing' and the cut-and-paste, jazz-tinged loop oddity 'I Know You Feel Sad') are interesting and entertaining in equal measure.
Review: Ascending his way to the surface through labels like Stil Vor Talent, Traum Schallplatten and the Polymath label who released his 20 Days LP, Third Son arrives on Shall Not Fade with a chirpsy EP of hope-driven tech house. With the title-track embracing a mid-2000s sound that inspire memories of Booka Shade through to ATB, "Don't Go Quietly" pushes tougher drums and sweet vocals, with "Lesson In Stoicism" holding down a sweet sustained pad over rolling beat and IDM-electro atmospheres and effects. Delving into trance-like bassline territory is "Don't Be Self Conscious" and 'Pygmalion Effect" with banging warehouse dub techno hitting the spot in "Descartes Before The Horse".
Review: Marcel Vogel makes his first appearance on Shall Not Fade, joining forces with previously unheard vocalist/producer Tim Jules for an expansive EP of high-quality, musically rich workouts. They begin by hooking up with Alexander Arslan on 'If You Don't Love', a wonderfully tactile, soulful and organic-sounding slab of vocal deep house, before enlisting the help of Khadija on the mid-tempo boogie-house shuffle of 'This Is When I Leave'. Hector Winjbergen lends a hand on the synth-happy, bass guitar-propelled brilliance of 'Why Don't You Leave Me' (an instrumental mix of which is tucked away at the end of EP), while 'Like a Fish In The Water' is a hard-boiled, bluesy house stomper full of addictive Clavinet licks and not so subtle nods to Prince style purple funk.
Review: Synthwave disco newcomer Rees finds himself debuting on Shall Not Fade following a great early turn on the Zone Focus label last year. With a strong affinity to the sounds of disco clearly apparent in the music of Rees, he delivers the label a chunk of heavy cosmic and synthwave influences - conjuring epic scenes of what Rimini might have been like back in the day. With that you'll find pumping '80s snare drums to make Roger Linn proud alongside some adorable rainbow road motifs in the title track - next to some New York loft party vibes in "Velvet Dreams". Nu Romancer!
Review: Some two years after making their breakthrough on Strictly Rhythm, Bodhi return to action via a first outing on Shall Not Fade. The Cardiff-based duo are in fine form throughout, giddily bouncing between styles without losing any of their trademark panache. bOver the course of the EP's five tracks, the Welsh twosome flits between driving, mind-altering sweatiness (stomping, psychedelic house opener 'SQU'), dreamy and spacey breakbeat (the saucer-eyed swell of 'Rounds'), sub-heavy electro (the pulsating and breathless 'Drop One'), ambient techno-meets-vintage D&B gorgeousness (the wavy synths sounds, minimalistic percussion and sampled voices of 'Solaris') and thrillingly grimy, ultra-aggressive revivalist jungle ('Junction 93'). A pleasingly varied, on-point excursion.
Review: When Shall Not Fade launched their Classic Cuts series, it was DJ PoolBoi who provided the first EP - a fine collection of cuts titled Rarities. Here the Austin, Texas-based producer delivers a timely sequel, once again tiptoeing the fine line between outsider house, lo-fi fuzziness, colourful positivity, early morning jazziness and loose-limbed, loved-cheeriness. Such is the quality on show that picking highlights is tough, though we're particularly enjoying the melodious melancholia of bittersweet closing cut 'Early You', the piano-laden deep house shuffle of sublime opener 'I Know You Tried' and the hissing nu-jazz mutation that is 'Yesterday'.
Review: In the press release accompanying this label debut from Loure, Shall Not Fade classifies the four tracks on show as "elated and explorative house". There's certainly a loved-up, life-affirming positivity on show throughout, from the breakbeat driven deep house dreaminess of kaleidoscopic, glassy-eyed opener 'Grip', to the acid-flecked, sunrise-ready swell of string-drenched closing cut 'Breath of Light', where lilting lead lines offer a yearning and breath-taking focal point. Sandwiched in between you'll find the immersive, gently unfurling chunkiness of 'Inner Side' and the synth bass-propelled bounciness of 'Two Dimes Deep', where sharp acid lines and elongated pads catch the ear.
Review: Byron Blaylock's last extended outing, last year's brilliant Ambrosia on Jeff Mills' Axis label, delivered a perfect balance between live, colourful jazz-funk instrumentation and club-ready deep house grooves. The Alabama native taps into that sound again on The New Beginning, his third full length excursion, while also reppin' head-nodding instrumental hip-hop, sci-fi seeped future boogie, dusty jazz, spacey peak-time club workouts and jaunty dancefloor jazz. Such is the quality on show, picking individual highlights is tough, though our current favourites include the sax-laden romp 'Universal Insanity', the piano-sporting deep house breeziness of 'Cosmic Dub', the Motor City influenced wonder of 'The End of the World' and the sparkling, Dam Funk-esque 'Smoke One For Huckaby'.
Review: Next up on Shall Not Fade is Mark Blair with a storming release. The title track resounds to an ebm-style bass and rude-boy vocal sample, with the arrangement also boasting a frazzled acid line that swarms in and out randomly. On "Smackos Tape Station", Blair ups the tempo to deliver a killer combination of razor-sharp percussion and menacing 303s, before taking a sideways turn for "Prince of Persia". Featuring a mesmerising Middle Eastern riff and deft filters, these elements make for a more nuanced track. "Distress Call" marks another shift, as Blair delivers a visceral minimal affair, while on "Bleep Haus", his beloved 303 re-appears, this time realised as a tweaked, tonal banger.