Review: It would be fair to say that Leonidas Deejay has breathed new life into his Alien Disco Sugar project this year. The alias was dormant for two years, but since he dusted it down in May, the London-based Greek producer has offered up a flurry of rather good EPs. There's naturally plenty to get the blood pumping on his latest four-tracker, from the beefed-up, string-laden disco-house release of lead cut "Love Affair" - a suitably celebratory, synth bass-fuelled vocal romp that's available in Radio Edit and Extended Mix forms - to the chunkier, subtly tooled-up disco-funkiness of "Pick It Up & Get Higher", and the Clavinet-sporting, horn-heavy chug of arpeggio-driven closing cut "Saturday Night Boogie".
Review: We're not sure whether Detroit Swindle has previously released anything quite as driving and energetic as "Coffee In The Morning". Although the lead vocal from sometime Tartelet artist Jitwam is worthy of comment, it's the infectious and breathless music that sits beneath - a combination of a low-slung punk-funk bassline, sweaty house beats, addictive electric piano stabs and wild sax lines - that makes the track such a buzzing, caffeine-charged affair. The Dutch duo's accompanying vocal-free "Dub Mix" is rock solid, but it's Prins Thomas's 10-minute "Discomiks" - an ever-growing, pulsating fusion of dub disco sweatiness and jazz-house heaviness, with additional space disco electronics thrown in for good measure - that really sets the pulse racing. In a word: essential.
Review: One thing we have noticed over the past couple of years with 2TUF4U is the fact they really are not scared to dive into old school sounds and flavours, which is very apparent here as we check out the tracks that feature on their new 'Musical Joose' LP. The whole project is a showcase of old school remixes and originals, from the potent synth stabs and shimmering textures of 'Faith Is My Fire' from Madd Tuff Project and Leanne Louise to the crunchy drum expressions found in Diy's Bubble Gum dub mix of Kele Le Roc 'Retro'. The whole project works as a selection, almost taking on the role of an old school garage mixtape, and we absolutely love it. We would also definitely recommend taking this one in on long play!
Pete Tong & John Monkman - "Aquarius" - (7:15) 125 BPM
Jaden Thompson - "Eve's Drop" - (6:36) 127 BPM
Waze & Odyssey - "Plus & Minus" - (5:56) 125 BPM
Archie Hamilton - "Waiting Game" - (5:40) 127 BPM
Laura Jones & Karousel - "No Borders" - (7:06) 127 BPM
Thoma Bulwer X Anna Wall - "Peace Of Mind" - (6:50) 127 BPM
Review: This is not the first compilation to drop whose sole aim is to raise funds for NHS Chartities Together - R&S Records and Bass Agenda both delivered similarly epic sets - but "Care4Life" may well be the strongest and most diverse. As you'd expect, each one of the 45 tracks is previously unreleased, and the cast list reads like a who's who of dance music culture. Notable highlights include an ultra-deep, saucer-eyed number from Daniel Avery, an unheard rework of the Chemical Brothers' "Catch Me I'm Falling", a superb revision of Harvey's Locussolus project by Kiwi, Matthew Herbert in jazzy broken beat mode, a rare solo outing from Optimo's JD Twitch, a rip-roaring rave workout from Jas Shaw, and thumping peak-time bangers from Dusky, Eats Everything and Patrick Topping.
Review: Mexican label Furious Mandrill - specialists in "tropical disco and Afrodisiac funk" - bring us a four-tracker from Argentinian producer Alexny. 'I Believe', which is either a cover of The Jackson Sisters' 'I Believe In Miracles' or a re-edit of someone else's (it's hard to tell) gets the ball rolling, followed by 'Diggin' Roots', a shufflin' funk-soul cut with a late 60s/early 70s feel (think War, Sly Stone, Rare Earth). 'Tamanqueira' is a summery slice of Latin-infused funk, while the high life-esque 'Sekele Movement' plays us out on an Afro tip. Four very solid cuts that'll work well on more discerning floors.
Review: During their golden patch between 2015 and 2017, Soul of Hex released well-regarded material on Quintessentials, Defected offshoot DFTD and, most notably, Freerange. It seems fitting then that their first new single in two years should appear on the latter label's on-point Delusions of Grandeur offshoot. It's a typically excitable, all-action affair, with the Mexican twosome variously offering up savagely cut-up, low-slung punk-funk/house fusion ("Disco Permanente"), starry, slap-bass-propelled deep house warmth ("Polygon Alpha Funk" featuring Cornelius SA), madcap, off-the-wall disco-house loop-funk ("Drum Fantasy"), heavily percussive nu-disco/Afro-house fusion ("Punch", featuring More Lotion), and tactile, disco-tinged Balearic deep house goodness ("Psychic").
Review: Following on from his recent appearance on the label's A-Sides Vol.9 compilation, Victor Ruiz returns to Drumcode with this lean club techno EP. The title track is based on a muscular bass and firing percussion, while a foreboding industrial riff zings its way over the backing track. "Illusions" is more high-paced and linear, with Ruiz delivering another searing riff, this time realised against the backdrop of a pounding, linear rhythm. On "Senses", he takes inspiration from 90s disco-house loops to create a rolling, highly charged tech workout, underpinned by a frazzled acid bass, while "Existence" is a more stripped back affair, focused on dramatic percussive builds and bleak bass tones.
Review: Maurice Fulton has made plenty of awesome records over the years, including a string of superb full-length sets as Boof. Here he returns with his first album under the alias for five years, and as you'd expect it's a belter. In line with its predecessors, Fulton delivers a swathe of ear-pleasing numbers laden with colourful synthesizer sounds, jazzy electric piano stabs, opaque chords and rubbery bass guitar. There are of course interesting and oddball diversions amongst the more straightforward house jams that are tricky to accurately describe - see "Ana's F Is Chillin", the intoxicating and exotic "Japanese Indian Shrimp Curry" and the kaleidoscopic space jazz that is the brilliant title track - and a handful of ultra-percussive peak-time beasts (see "Luam Has Found Her Z").
Review: Having recently notched up a sixth year in business, Fingerman's Hot Digits imprint is in a celebratory mood - hence this all-action round-up of recent delights and unheard treats from the disco-loving label. Encompassing no less than 30 tunes, the collection giddily skips between warming beatdown disco (P-Sol's "Walter"), Mark E style slo-mo loop jams (Vigi's "I'll Be There") and glassy-eyed Balearic nu-disco (Picklejam's "Untitled Love"), before raising its hands skywards as the peak-time party-starters begin to appear thick and fast. Highights in this category include the vibrant jazz-house flex of Dexter Jones' "Swing Thing", the bustling boogie re-edit business of Monsieur Von Pratt's "Let's Dance" and the hearty disco-funk heaviness of Chewy Rubs' "Funky Bee Bop".
Review: One thing we are very proud to represent heavily here at JunoDownload.co.uk is breakbeat music, which has seen a major resurrection over the past few years. This latest five track rework extravaganza from Haynesy is a perfect example of that, kicking off with the vibrant drum chops and scratch heavy arrangement of 'Big Mouth'. Next, 'Let The Rhythm Hit 'Em' gives us a funkadelic vocal switchup, followed by the old school hip hop infusions of 'Root Down' and the more uptempo bass grooves of 'Set It Off'. Finally, DJ Jabbathakut arrives just in time to add some magic to 'I'll House You', a percussive explosion of tooting horns and sumptuous basslines, putting the perfect final touches on an excellent collection.
Review: Remarkably, three decades have now passed since Dave Lee AKA Joey Nergo inaugurated his label, Z Records. To mark the occasion, Lee has compiled this suitably epic, 44-track retrospective. There are plenty of big tunes and underground anthems present- see Jakatta's "American Dream", Raven Maize's "The Real Life", The Sunburst Band's "Everyday" and Doug Willis's "Spread Love" - as well as some of the veteran DJ/producer's favourite catalogue cuts and some slept-on gems. Throw in a string of memorable remixes - think Ame's remix of Akabu's "Phuture Bound", Grant Nelson's vintage rub of Z Factor's "Gotta Keep Pushin" and Joey Negro's revision of Patrice Rushen disco classic "Haven't You Heard" - and you've got a brilliant retrospective of one of house and disco's most consistent labels. Don't sleep!
Review: Russian born and now Berlin-based Yulia Niko can often be found wowing audiences at her residency for the famous local institution Watergate, in addition to releasing for tastemaker labels such as Get Physical, Hottrax, Rebellion and Subliminal. Not to mention her own imprints TochnoTechno and Libe Vibe. Here she makes her debut for Damian Lazarus' esteemed Crosstown Rebels imprint with the deep and mesmerising arcane energy of "Fatima", which is backed up by the equally spiritual and meditative polyrhythms on "Man From Ubud". If that was not enough, there's also a killer remix by Rominimal maestro Priku, who teams up with homeboy Dinu to increase the energy levels on their powerfully melodic rework.
Dissolut - "Vibe With Me (feat. Loratio)" (extended mix) - (6:22) 128 BPM
Alex Preston - "Toolroom Poolside 2020 - Mix 02" (Mixed By Alex Preston) - (1:19:07) 125 BPM
Review: Toolroom's Poolside annual returns for 2020 in a big way, welcoming Alex Preston to the Toolroom Family, who has hand picked the finest in house and disco across two continuous mixes, including essential cuts and exclusives from industry veterans and newcomers alike. Highlights comes from Dutch trio Kraak & Smaak who become right disco Stus on "Aftersun", boss man Mark Knight shows us exactly what uplifting house truly sounds like on the massive "If It's Love" featuring Laura Davie & The Melody Men, as does label staple Weiss on the joyous funky house of "You're Sunshine". Elsewhere, Robsoul head honcho Phil Weeks gets loopy on his typically jazzy kind of something called "Good To You" and the mandatory banger comes from legends Green Velvet & Technasia on the funked-up "Suga" while a classic comes in the form of Sterling Void's "It's Alright" (DJ Spen & Reelsoul remix).
Review: Since first appearing on Soulserious a decade ago, Sunday Roast has proved adept at joining the dots between British bass music's past and present. His last EP, for example, was heavily influenced by jungle, while this four-tracker combines elements from three of his biggest inspirations, UK garage, UK funky and contemporary deep house. He begins with the sub-bass propelled "UKF" roll of "Feel For You", where layered percussion and atmospheric, extended breakdowns catch the ear, before balancing the skip of 4/4 garage with the slick dreaminess of deep house on "Sleepless Nights". "Feeling Fine" manages to be both percussively weighty and musically opaque, while closing cut "Pressing On" is another dose of deep house/UK funky fusion laden with deep bass and spacey sounds.
Review: The fifth volume in Peppermint Jam's popular "Allstars" EP series hits home hard from the start, as DJ Meme and Brazilian legend Marcos Valle join forces to re-imagine sweaty Azymuth classic "Jazz Carnival" as a driving chunk of celebratory house mayhem. Lovebirds is up next with "The Path 2011", a similarly percussive workout that makes great use of steel band melodies and warm, deep disco bass. Matthias "Matty" Helibronn then gives a Teddy Pendergrass classic the re-edit treatment (albeit with the addition of some tasty new drums and a few well-placed filter sweeps), while The Reflex steals the show with an organ-heavy multi-track remix of Mandrill's 1972 funk shuffler "Ape Is High" (here re-named "Ape's Back In Town").
Review: With Italy hit hardest by the Coronavirus and lockdown right now, Milan crew, collective and glitterazzi Rollover keeps hope alive! Normally a trusted party for Milano's Apollo club (that's brought the likes of Tiga, Maurice Fulton, Ame and Bambounou to town), Rollover is the place and project for DJ duo and label owners Rocco Fusco & Tiberio Carcano to work their magic. In times of crisis Rollover presents a special initiative via their "ANYTHING GOES" edit service, welcoming voluntary contributions that pay homage to the spirit of Balearic music and beyond! Expect tracks from 2manydjs, Adam Port, Soul Clap, Boombass, Moscoman and Bill Brewster, among many others, with proceeds going to the official emergency fund set up by the Italian Civil Protection Department destined for the COVID-19 crisis in Italy.
Review: Krafty Kuts & Bomb Strikes, two names that when combined leave us with potentially incredible results. They join forces here to curate and design the fifth edition of 'Bass Funk', showcasing some of the most prominent faces across the entire breadth of breaks. The tracklisting for this one looks pretty monstrous, featuring the likes of A Skillz, Dubra, Arteo, Fort Knox Five, K+Lab & more. There are a couple of immediate stand outs however, with the latin horn melodies and vibrant rhythms of Ninjula's 'Spanish Princess' and the pure rawcus devilry of 'AI' from the legendary Delta Heavy both standing out!
Review: Especial welcomes Kim Ann Foxman to debut on the label with an ode to the power of the moon. The sample heavy, acid vocal cuts no slack and shows Foxman confidently developing as a producer and is backed with a stellar set of remixes from Roza Terenzi, Dawl & Sween and Violet. Revered by many as an on point clubber, dancer, singer, DJ and producer, her breakthrough in Hercules & Love Affair was a start, soon carving out her place as a solo artist and global DJ, while fitting in time to run the Firehouse - recently featuring Richard Sen and Kasra V - and SELF-TIMER labels - home to new project, Pleasure Planet. As veteran of the San Francisco 90s heyday, slipping breaks around a 4/4 kick is a blast of past meets acid future, as 303 meets M1, while Foxman's lyrics - written during the Blood Moon over London - extols the power of the tides, nature's internal and external flow. The remixes are a manner of breaks-heaven, as Roza Terenzi rips a steppas dub, Tone Dropout's Dawl and Sween master a latter day M25 anthem, before finally Violet, edits, strips, builds and takes things deep. Make me lust, make me bleed...
Review: Well, it seems to be every week that we welcome a brand new drop from the Four40 team this year, however this latest drop is something truly special as the veteran imprint celebrates nine years of activity with a scintillating selection, showcasing some of their most important roster members over the years. The tracklisting is vast, featuring a colossal 51 tracks from the likes of Vital Techniques, Mistakay, PVC, Enigma Dubz, Tuff Culture, Earthnut and more. With such a stacked release, picking highlights is pretty tough, but for us the two stand outs boil down to super spooky drum twists and moody textures of 'You Or Me' from ZeroFG, alongside the classic Skepsis remix of 'VIP', originally featuring Hybrid Theory and Trilla.
Review: Now the team at ONEPUF are gaining quite the reputation for extracting the weird and wonderful out of the producers they work with. This latest third edition of their self-named compilation series is a perfect example of that as they welcome 8 producers who all bring something very different to the table. Epoch provides us with an amphibious roller with 'Understand', followed by Exit 99's very unusual moogy creation 'Lemon Acid'. Next, some techy breaks action on 'Flugel Dance' from Coldpast before Kobe JT & Tuff Tax hit us with some original UKG flavour. Joedan keeps us on the garage tip with 'Black Everything', followed by the jersey club style sounds of 'Swisha Drop' from Killjoy and high speed acid vibes of Zeed's 'Fish & Chips'. Finally, DJ BMW lets loose some original techno flavour with the unpredictable moog stabs of 'Reactor Core VIP', with Headchef's 'Alarming Regularity' providing us with the perfect outro for this momentous compilation.
Review: This 14-track VA comp will delight anyone who loves UK garage but has really had enough of partying like it's 1999, as London-based Dansu Discs showcase new directions in post-UKG bass music. Opener 'December' does for Al Green what High Contrast's 'Kiss Kiss Bang Bang' did for Julie London, and sets the scene for an album that's full of surprises, from the prog-isms of DJ Life's 'Blue' to Pinder's broken beater 'Hot Feet' to Warwick's ominously rumbling 'Only Way'. Elsewhere, Suki's 'Mind Control' could cross over onto deep house floors, while 'Original Style' from Main Phase will please the ragga-garage diehards.
Review: Since 2014, Frankfurt producer Shan has offered up regular missives on Running Back, with each successive EP exploring different sonic territory to its predecessor whilst retaining a strong retro-futurist feel. His latest offering is undeniably eclectic in its dancefloor-focused approach, with Shan variously turning his hand to percussion-heavy jack tracks (the sweat-soaked heaviness of "Schlagzeug"), Italo-disco/80s Euro-house fusion (opener "Stuck 4"), Bobby Orlando-style Hi-NRG ("Valentino"), mix 1980s Shep Pettibone dubs of synth-pop cuts (the rather brilliant "Holzboden") and stylish, synth-laden cosmic disco wildness (EP closing throb-job "Video 83"). As you'd expect, there's a stripped-back authenticity to the sound and production that captures the raw energy and feel of the vintage music that inspired him (albeit with the kind of low-end weight associated with heavily compressed 21st century dance music).
Review: It's that time of the year again as we welcome back the wonderful Night Bass crew for the 10th edition of their 'This Is Night Bass' series, featuring some of the biggest and most popular names the scene has to offer. The tracklist boasts a fabulous combination of established talent and newcomers, as we see the likes of Taiki Nulight, NuBass, Dommix, The Sponges, CAPOZZi, Sage Armstrong, Sqwad and more join forces to create a sumptuous collection. Our highlights have to include Riddim Commission's super smooth 'In My Soul', alongside the groovy horns of 'Funky Soul', from Nicky Genesis, Jace Mek's techy influxes on 'Bring It Back' and the stripped back debut of Tengu with 'Bad Girls'.
Review: The latest edition of the the Sum compilation series features a mixture of established and upcoming producers. First up are The Reason Y and T?mas Sinn, who deliver the tough, reverberating groove of "Trip Tales". Meanwhile another emerging act, Risa Taniguchi, impresses with the deep, tunnelling techno of "She" and Eme Kulhnek drops the mesmerising, hypnotic groove of "Efforts". Mindful of electronic music's rich heritage, Second State has also commissioned some of Europe's most established artists to contribute to this edition; Quenum drops the clicky minimalism of "Fact Action" and on "Zurich" the veteran producer Secret Cinema, combines gritty drums with atmospherics to devastating effect.
Review: As ever, the Nipponeer Japan crew have outdone themselves with this one as they welcome back The Darrow Chem Syndicate for an exclusive remix project by the name of 'Not For Resale'. First up, we hear Kid Panel provide us with an excellent, euphoric rethink of the wonderful 'Bounce Of Thunder', which is then chased up closely by Kuplay, who unleashes some super groovy energy and vibrant rhythmic design into his overhaul of 'Hahppy'. Next up, Mob Ties & Mr. Moozit get involved for a cheeky, break-heavy edit of 'Aznable Gimmick' before we finish up with Rory Hoy, who goes to town on 'Cowper's Cooper', unleashing wave after wave of lofi drumwork and crunchy samples to see us out in style.
Review: Bart Skils' association with Drumcode stretches back almost a decade, with the Dutch producer bringing his clubby take on techno to the label on a series of EPs. The same approach is audible again on the title track, where dreamy synths are fused with a dense bass and tough, rolling drums. Meanwhile on "Tropical Heat", haunting vocal samples are interwoven with rough electronic tones as Skils brings the throbbing rhythm to an irresistible climax. "Shiva Says" is just as impactful, but involves a different approach, with a series of filtered drops and wiry acid tones underpinning pounding drums and a rhythm that slams hard.
Review: Last year Kevin Pierre AKA Demuir made headline-grabbing appearances on Hot Creations, Desolat and Robsoul Recordings. Here he belatedly kick-starts his 2020 campaign with another high profile release, this time on Kerri Chandler's Kaoz Theory imprint. The Toronto-based producer kicks things off with the sunny soulful house chunkiness of "Lusting U", where Bluey Robinson's effortlessly soulful lead vocal rides a chunky, synth bass-propelled good-time groove. It feels like a summer anthem in waiting. Just as impressive is "Espiritual", a sprightly, synth-laden slab of fireside-warm Latin house bounciness that comes in both vocal and dub mix forms.
Review: Milan based Take It Easy label and party is back. This third drop comes from label owners Dirty Channels, Bugsy and DJLMP with the addition of the historical Italian dj and Paradise Pizza's label owner Memoryman aka Uovo. After their big success "Watchin Out" and "Catch Me", Dirty Channels open the EP with an Afro-influenced sample stomper followed up by an afrobeat vocal tool by DJLMP. "I Wonder" brings some crackly Detroit atmosphere by Memoryman aka Uovo. "Pomiri Dan" completes the set, percussive sample stomper by Bugsy on his first appearance on the label.
Review: All time great Alkalino looks to the headlines for a Dark Room Scandal! Sending in deeper house vibes for this three-track release, there's a playful spirit to the dark side of this EP. "Orson Welles" sees the slightest of disco influences maintained in the track's percussion alongside deeper basslines, melodies and tripped out vocals. Dubby bassline house is paired with starry synths loops in "Dancing With Somebody", with the title-track doubling down on its clap-track, industrial atmospheres and suspenseful strings. Alkalino goes deep.
Review: Like its previous iterations, the ninth instalment in Drumcode's A-Sides compilation provides an invaluable overview of the big room techno sound. For this edition, that includes sounds as diverse as the tranced out, vocal-sampling "Fierceness" from Joyhauser to Dubfire's menacing, bass-heavy stepper, "Deadbug", and the pumping, exhilarating "Just Close Your Eyes" courtesy of Tronic boss Christian Smith. As these various strands attest, A-Sides is a broad church, but the end game is dance floor impact, and on Thomas Schumacher's "Intuit" and Reset Robot's searing "Grains", that goal is reached using bruising low end and heavy acid lines.
Review: Roll out the red carpet as bouncing UK duo Camelphat arrive on Moon Harbour with vocals from Cari Golden. "Freak" sees the pair, still hot from collaborations with Riva Starr and other records on Circus Recordings, turn in an industrial tinged vocal single preaching all matter of seduction and sin to the self-isolating dancers out there. Bossman himself Matthias Tanzmann beefs up the original in a bassline driven, tribal house context with edited vocals for the best of fever dreams! To the club!
Review: Despite their incredibly consistent catalogue, it feels like Roska Kicks & Snares as an imprint has become even more special over the past year or so, with every new release levelling up the labels output. For their next selection, we see them welcome MOTU for a vibrant 8 track selection simply entitle 'Motu Collection', showcasing his quite frankly outstanding skillset, jam-packed with rhythmic gems left right and centre. From the wavy bass manoeuvres of 'Screwball' to the more carnival style drum work of 'Yeah Riddim' and stripped percussive magnificence of 'KCU', MOTU well and truly has UK funky covered. We also wanted to send a nod to the vocal collaborations on this one, as Nico Lindsay returns in fine from on 'Have To Know' alongside Killa P's electric performance on 'Tek Weh' and the mega collaborative flavours of 'Move', featuring PRM Project, DJ Polo, Roska & Blase Vanguard.
Review: House of Disco welcomes a new name to the roster: debutant SHEE, an Irish producer that the label has already tipped for future greatness. The four tracks on show are certainly quietly impressive, with the Irishman offering up a varied selection that's undeniably a cut above the norm. Check first opener "Our Love", an intoxicating, spine-tingling affair that sees SHEE wrap undulating acid lines, atmospheric electronics and blissful female vocal samples around an elastic house groove, before turning your attention to the warmer, jazzier and subtly disco-tinged track that follows, "Forgotten". Title track "Jiraya" is wonderfully dreamy, colourful and vibrant, with Shee painting bold brush strokes over a tough house beat, while closing cut "Funk, Nah" adds a little mutant P-funk hustle to a chunky deep house groove.