Review: Brooklyn's nu-disco hero Aimes (aka Aman Elli) has delivered plenty of hot dancefloor jams for labels like Wonder Stories and here he is with another, "Smiling Faces" on Spa In Disco. His original mix is a really slick slice of sunset boogie, with driving punk-funk bass and catchy vocal refrains. First up on remix duty is Rayko who adds a more melodic bassline to the mix, resulting in a cool joint that echoes early Noughties electro-disco. Elsewhere Mordisco turns in some excellent moody tech-house with lashings of pan pipes and lastly Alex Malos delivers a reliable and sturdy disco-house rework.
Review: Smiling nu-disco producer Andy Buchan made a big impression in 2017, thanks in no small part to well-received releases on Thunder Jam, Chopshop and Disco Fruit. Here he pops up on Spa in Disco following tasty 2018 outings on Hot Digits and Masterworks Music. "Future Robot" is something of a rushing, life-affirming treat, with waves of Italo-disco style synths, P-funk squiggles and robotic vocoder vocals rising above a snappy nu-disco beat. Dubai's Don Dayglow does a solid job on the remix, emphasizing the track's Italo-disco influences via a bld and druggy new arpeggio style bassline. To complete the package, Bunchanan takes his scalpel to No Smoke's 1989 UK Afro-house classic "Koro Koro", somehow making it even more percussive and bass-heavy.
Review: Chewy Rubs productions are usually heavily sampled-based, but there's enough original work gone into them that to label them simply as re-edits would be unfair. 'You Can Get It', for instance, loops up a chunk of vocal from Instant Funk's 1978 Salsoul classic 'I Got My Mind Made Up', but pairs it with an insistent Italo-esque bass throb. The other three tracks are all instrumentals: 'Over The Boarder' nods to west coast jazz-funk, 'On The Move' recaptures some of the irresistible exuberance of Chewy's own 'Sombrero' from last year and 'Lush' has an 80s Euro feel... but in a good way.
Review: It had to happen eventually! Two leading lights of the Spanish nu-disco scene, Rare Wiri main man Rayko and Spa In Disco boss Fran Deeper, come together on one EP with predictably high-quality results. In its Original form, 'Desestabilidad' is a hypnotic, pulsating cut in which a big fat squelchy bassline throbs away at the bottom end while arpeggiated synths shimmer and sparkle on top. Alex Arcocha provides a dreamy, Balearic-leaning house remix, while if you need a more stripped-back n' dubby pass for small-hours play, then see the second remix, which comes from the currently on-fire Manuel Costela.
Review: Sometime Disco Fruit, Midnight Riot and Re-Love artist Frank Virgilio wants us to shake our booty. Helpfully, he's provided two fresh cuts guaranteed to make us follow those instructions to the letter. Title track "Shake Your Ass" is particularly potent, with Virgilio offering up a tasty rearrangement of a floor-friendly old Afro-Disco cut rich in Tony Allen style dryms, heavy bass guitar, spoken vocal snippets, punchy horns, jaunty organ and distinctive guitar riffs. He tweaks the formula a little on "What Is Love", adding snippets of vocals previously sampled by De-Lite to a slightly tooled-up backing track that sits somewhere between house, disco and fuzzy Latin soul. It's a sweaty summer workout for those who want a bit of audio sunshine to brighten up a murky autumnal day.
Review: For the latest missive on his largely reliable Spa In Disco imprint, Mallorca-based DJ/producer Fran Deeper has turned to a lesser-known talent, label debutant French Toast. There's little solid info online about the artist, but we can confirm that "Didgeridoo" is rather good. It's not a nu-disco cover of the Aphex Twin cut of the same name (though that would be pretty cool), but rather a sleazy late night ITalo-disco workout rich in faintly foreboding arpeggio lines, mangled male vocal snippets and spiraling electronics. Atlantico House Caribe delivers the obligatory remix, adding extra bongos and congas and a few droning didgeridoo noises to make a tough and trippy workout even more psychedelic.
Review: Now relocated to Mallorca from Mexico, Spa In Disco bring us two cuts that'd work in deep house or disco sets alike, albeit we're definitely at the more experimental, synth-y end of either spectrum. 'Gatta' itself opens with a muted kick and hand percussion before introducing the throbbing, Italo-ish synth line that plays throughout, augmented by big bass vamps, trippy synth-strings and more frantic percussion work. 'Forests Wind' is a more stripped-back affair made up a laaaa-rge synth bassline, shakers galore, other assorted hand percussion and several competing keyboard parts. Quirky stuff that defies easy categorisation.
Review: Venice Beach member Jerome Potin has largely impressed with his solo material under the Jay Airiness alias, releasing a mix of edits and original productions via such labels as Diggin' Deeper and Trad Vibe. This release for Spa In Disco is arguably has most expansive and polished collection of original tracks yet. Choose between the synth-bass driven electrofunk chug of "Mellotron Singinging" - where breathy vocal samples and disco guitar riffs ride a throbbing groove - the dirty Italo-disco revivalism of "Torna In Italia", and the bouncy, hip-house goes nu-disco via Sunrise '89 flex of "Crazy & Lazy". Planet Jupiter re-imagines the latter track as a hard-wired chunk of piano-laden boogie-house, while Rewindthedisco turns it into a low-slung chunk of disco heaviness.
Review: Mexican producer Juan Soto - not to be confused with the major league baseball star of the same name! - comes to Fran Deeper's Mallorca-based label with two slices of contemporary disco. 'Miento Sin Resentimiento' comes on like late 70s Talking Heads jamming with synth-pop pioneers Landscape, topping a motorik rhythm and analogue synth sounds with a new wave-y male vocal. The accompanying, oddly titled 'Oh, Ziggy Will You Ever Win?' looks to the boogie/electrofunk era for inspiration, with handclaps galore and a gloriously 80s-sounding bassline. Both tracks do a fine job of taking nostalgic/retro sounds and making them sound remarkably fresh.
Review: Originally started in Mexico, Fran Deeper now runs the Spa In Disco imprint out of Mallorca in Spain. Over the last few years has brought us some killer jams by the likes of Rayko, Super Agente 86, Jose Hdez and David Manso to name but a few. It is now over to Italian guy in Bristol Kiu D with the Small Steps EP. Beginning with the deeply percussive nu-disco joint that is the title track, "Smoke" gets all sexy and housey on us in a very late night fashion. "Wiper & True" gets some Kaidi Tatham style nu-jazz soul vibes into the mix: that Herbie Hancock style synth bass really doing the business. Finally, there's a remix by the formerly Dubai based Brit Andy Buchan with an irresistible nu-disco makeover of "Small Steps".
Review: Fran Deeper's Spanish nu-disco label come up with the goods once again! This four-tracker opens with 'Acidi Cocktail', a Moroder-esque throbber but with hints, too, of early prog, as well as the 303 flecks you're already expecting. 'Brain Chords' comes on like classic early 90s NJ garage given a 21st Century makeover (and nods to the Peech Boys to boot), while 'Do It Today', with its squelchy 303 bassline and rinky-tink pianos, pays homage to the early house sound of Chicago. The gloriously authentic-sounding 70s disco of 'With You' then closes out what is a very fine EP indeed.