Review: Dusty, slammed down disco-house cosmiq. Whatever you wanna call it; space western discoteque pop from the techno future is still fun too. With dub trailing atmospheres streaking across the face of tracks like "The Light", all three here surf the skywaves of Detroit techno and Chicago house, lifting key notes and aquatic stabs from somewhere deeper in between too. Ripping key-tars and twangs bring the funk in "Volpi Polari" with "Fluto" going to Eiffel tower heights of Jean Michelle Jarre trance and '90s warehouse beats to lift you high.
Review: It feels like barely any time has passed since Javi Frias last set our bags alight with "Just Give It Up", but he's back once more on his own Night Shift with more of those oh-so-cool edits to share with the world. The strain of disco funk he's digging into on this EP is just sublime, particularly with the self-explanatory "Party Music" and sweet string sizzle of "Keep On". Following, there's a fiercer uptempo slant to "So Tight" and a more classic soul feel to "Everything" - one to bring a crowd together in a moment of heartfelt expression whether they know the words or not.
Review: After a collaboration with label staple (and all round German legend) Mousse T recently, Sebastian Doering aka Lovebirds decided to come back to Peppermint Jam with another EP. The Hamburg based producer (and Teardrop label boss) presents the charmingly titled 'New Shit Has Come To Light' which serves up three expressions in timeless deep house - and are as sexy and emotive as you like it! From the sensual late night mood music of "Glove", to the evocative breaks-driven vocal charmer "Da Sixty" and the funky sun-kissed soul power of "Disco Train" closing out this fine EP.
Review: As the year comes to a close, labels are naturally offering up celebratory compilations showcasing their strongest releases of 2019. The latest comes from Midnight Riot, a prolific imprint that rarely fails to serve up the fieriest contemporary disco heat. As you'd expect, the 26-track selection includes a blend of superb original productions (the nu-disco soul warmth of Jack Tyson Charles' "Glory", Alton Edwards sweaty, synth-bass propelled boogie-house gem "I Just Wanna Spend Time With You", the swirling disco headiness of Arthur Baker's "Reachin' Out") and re-edits/reworks (Dr Packer's gospel boogie revision "The Power", C Da Afro's disco-funk slammer "Party Purpose" and the suitably celebratory "Boogie On Time" by Ladies On Mars). As you'd expect, the quality threshold remains impressively high throughout.
Review: This excellent collection from Z Records draws together some of boss man Joey Negro's favourite label cuts of 2019, many of which he of course had a hand in either producing or remixing. There are naturally tons of superb multi-track remixes of disco gems old and new (see the versions of the O'Jays, Delia Renee, Tamiko Jones and Double Exposure), as well as fresh revisions of vintage Joey Negro house productions under other aliases (Doug Willis, Z Factor, Foreal People) and a swathe of killer cuts that join the dots between disco and house (Sunkids and Chance, Four80 East and CeCe Peniston, Bobby D'Ambrosia and Michelle Weeks). Throw in tracks and remixes from the likes of Fouk, Crackazat and Lay-Far and you have a superb collection of peak-time-ready workouts.
Review: With "Rhythm & Waves", Russian producer Sunner Soul seems to be daydreaming of sunnier and warmer times. There's certainly something suitably sun-kissed about the title track, which gently beefs up and re-arranges a bouncy, Clavinet-heavy chunk of groovy disco-funk that comes smothered in atmospheric party sounds. The tighter, slap bass-sporting "Universal Disco" explores similar sonic territory, while "Red Hot Disco" sees him layer up the percussion and filter sweeps on a joyful, mid-set workout. Elsewhere, "Let's Somebody Love" is a soaring slice up tooled-up disco-soul and "Get ready With Me" is a fine slab of string-laden boogie brilliance that sounds like it was beamed down from a distant disco planet.
Review: The Southpoint unit have had yet another sparkling year, with their sound constantly evolving at the forefront of UK bass music's ever expanding boundaries and parameters. This year they have taken it to the next level, with the seventh edition of their 'Southpoint Presents' series launching across all platforms, including bangers from the likes of KXVU, Jakebob, Bushbaby, Muttley, Moony, Mofaux, Dunman, Drax, Movement, Tengu and more. We also see Presents debuts for the likes of MPH, On1, Negativ and Daffy, arguably rendering their strongest compilation in the series.
Review: If we were to give an award for label of the year based entirely on consistency, it would be hard to see Four40 not running away with it as they finally round off what has been an untouchable year with one last killer compilation. Royal Flush takes the role of compiler on this one, pulling in some scorchers from the likes of Soulecta, ZeroFG, Jack Junior, Tuff Culture, Earthnut and of course Royal Flush himself. There are a couple of tracks here we feel really hold their own amongst a stacked line up, with Pavv's classic sounding '3210' being one of them, alongside 'Guilty Twitches' from Ozwald and the choppy vibes of 'Love Is Coming' from the legendary EL-B.
Review: We were rather astonished to discover that "24/7 Love Affair" is Michael Baumann's first album as Soulphiction for 11 years. We were a little less surprised to find that it's superb. In fact, we'd go as far as to say that it could be considered a "best practice" example of the kind of loose, sample-heavy, soul-fired deep house that is all the rage right now. Yet the album's epic length - it comprises no less than 17 tracks - also allows Baumann to mix it up a little too, with a swathe of ocean-deep club jams being joined by search diversions as the morning-fresh broken beat loveliness of "Jus Listen", the stomping disco-funk of "The Mood", the bustling breakbeats of "A Freak" and the blazed instrumental hip-hop of "Good Night Ema".
Review: It has been quite a year for the Toolroom institution. Celebrating their 15th birthday last year, they weren't ones to rest on their laurels, instead going full steam ahead with a bunch of genre defining compilations this year. But most importantly they have been instrumental in the comeback of funky house after a 20 year dormancy, with killer releases by the likes of Weiss, Cashio and boss man Mark Knight himself. Add to that one banging party at Chicago Social Club for Amsterdam Dance Event and it's evident that these guys are proper 24 hour party people. With a glorious year sadly coming to an end, celebrate a wonderful one that was on Best Of Toolroom 2019 with highlights not limited to: the rework of the Cevin Fisher classic "Freaks Come Out" by Jack Back, Hannah Wants & Kevin Knapp's deep down and dirty "Call Me" (extended mix), UK heroes Alan Fitzpatrick & Wheats delivering the certified banger "M27" and New York legend Todd Terry teaming up with Tuff London on "Psychodrama" featuring Jasmien Nanhekhan. If that was not enough, ascendant producer Maxinne delivers two mixes compiling all the tracks: one smooth House mix followed by a thumping Tech House mix.
Review: Almost three years have passed since Philadelphia duo Superprince debuted on Razor 'N' Tape with a vinyl-only EP of rather good re-edits. Here that four-tracker finally makes it to digital download. It's worth picking up, if only for the flute-laden, horn-heavy bounciness of down-low disco-funk rework "Strong Feeling" (a fine revision of Morning, Noon & Night's "Feelin' Strong"). The highlights down end there, either, with "Down On Bitter End" providing a chunky, peak-time-ready revision of a Vicki Sue Robinson disco anthem, "Start Again" offering a breezy new spin on a lesser celebrated One Way cut and "Up Up To The Sky" turning Silver Convention's "Fly Robin Fly" into a hypnotic chunk of mid-tempo disco hedonism.
Review: Produced in the early part of this year, "Destination Mars" marks Maceo Plex's terrific return to Drumcode for the first time since 2014. The track is a powerful main room thriller: steely and barrelling with equal parts tension and suspense, plus featuring vocals by the legendary Josh Wink of Ovum Recordings. On the remix front, we have label staple Raxon delivering a slinky and adrenalised rework which sees the Emirati producer at the top his production game, while the hypnotic perspective by Argentina's Shall Ocin is perfect for those heads down moments - and will draw you further down into the vortex.
Review: 2019 has been a resounding success for the 1Forty imprint, with a fantastic run of releases under their belt across the realms of multiple different genres. Today we check out their last drop of 2019 as they continue their run of funky and garage compilations. Firstly, they bring together both Muder He Wrote and Logan for a tasty roller by the name of 'Worthwhile', before Razor & Hamdi bring down the vocal fire over Retrospects funky infused 'What You Gonna Do'. Next, the vocal flavours and nostalgic chords come to life in Higgo's smooth UKG smash entitled 'Soul 2 Soul' before LR Groove & Dryman conclude proceedings with 'Life Form', a stomping, carnival-ready creation!
Review: If the January blues have hit you hard, we'd suggest diving into this celebratory label compilation from Springbok Records. At 15 tracks deep it's something of an epic, with the collected cuts blurring the boundaries between re-edits, remixes and original productions. There's plenty of chunky, filter-heavy disco-house cuts to be found throughout, with highlights including Andy Bach's piano-laden "Systematic", the bassline-driven brilliance of Curtis Scott's "The Truth" and the livewire peak-time excitement of Moggy Bee's "Satisfaction, Body Action", which breathes new life into a boogie-era disco classic. Elsewhere there are rock solid re-edits from Hp Vince, J.B Boogie, C Da Afro and Dave Leatherman and Bruce Nolan.
Review: Detroit Swindle is amongst the most reliable artists operating in the overgrown no-man's-land between house, disco and boogie. That much is confirmed by "The Life Behind Things", which marks their first outing on Heist since last year's "High Life" LP. Title track "The Life Behind Things" is positive, ear-pleasing and dancefloor friendly, with the experienced pair peppering bouncy beats and thickset synth bass with joyous organ riffs (reminiscent of those found on Timmy Thomas soul classic "Why Can't We Live Together"), wobbly acid lines, jaunty piano stabs and female vocal snippets. Lorenz Rhode collaboration "Music For Clubs" is arguably even more rush inducing in its retro-futurist piano house intent, while Isoul8's remix of the title track is a swirling, soulful and decidedly tactile chunk of deep house brilliance.
Review: Two years on from his last album-length outing under the Lane 8 alias, tech house/progressive house fusionist Daniel Goldstein returns with an action-packed set featuring a mixture of songs and instrumentals. "Brightest Lights" is melodious, imaginative and musically intricate, with Goldstein effortlessly jogging between sun-baked mid-tempo workouts, icy synth-pop influenced goodness, cheery dancefloor workouts and the kind of glistening electronic goodness that sounds as good on the radio as it does in the club. At a notably dull and depressing time of the year, this kind of celebratory musical positivity is more than welcome.
Review: Next on Sleazy McQueen's ever reliable Lovedancing label is a proper stalwart of the New York City music scene who should need no introduction - the one the only The Juan Maclean. On his new EP The Lone Dancer, get stoned into the groove of the infectious disco house stomper "Body Language Pro" which then receives a worthy rework by label main man McQueen in collaboration with Cole Medina, and followed by the lo slung boogie down antics of "Let Me Come Into Your Life".
Review: Following a run of vinyl-only EPs on Automatic Writing, Negentropy and Butter Side Up, Sweely returns to the digital domain via his first EP for Distant Hawaii for over two years. He kicks things off by lacing distant female vocal samples and ultra-deep chords over a techno-tempo speed garage beat on "You Can Try This", before wrapping squelching, acid-style electronics and doom-laden chords around a bouncy drums on "Feeling Cozy". The four-to-the-floor garage influences return on the Grant Nelson-doing-deep house flex of "I Do It Naturally", while closing cut "The Never Ending Groove" is a pleasingly elastic jog through jazzy deep house territory.
Review: Multi-track maestro Pete Le Freq is back with a third selection of hot-to-trot reworks created using original vocals and instrumentation from a range of disco and boogie-era cuts. He successfully teases and filters out the Jackson Sisters on "Refreq'ed Miracle", before putting his stamp on Phreek's Patrick Adams-produced Paradise Garage anthem, "Weekend". He then delivers two storming cuts based on Dan Hartman's "Relight My Fire": an extended instrumental ("Pete's Got Vertigo") and a sing-along version with added Loleatta Holloway ("Relight Dan's Fire"). Elsewhere, he successfully tampers with a Salsoul classic ("Twenty Percent") and sticks a bouncy house beat beneath a string-laden disco classic ("Luv Town").
Review: Fill yer boots for the ravers out there that ain't no stranger to the club and kick drums, yer tech house fillings are here, a whole year's worth. Deep Dish's label out of Washington has been prolific as always on the release front this year with a stream on sunwashed Ibiza compilations coming out alongside EPs from CJ Jeff, Olivier Giacomotto and Sinisa Tamamovic to name a few, all of which feature here. Alongside other influential label member Sharam, Made By Pete delivers two cuts with the synth driven "Hawkins" and Enamours' deep tribal mix to "Aikido". Our pick though being Dubspeeka's remix to Sharam's "Secret Parkway" which sounds like a 2019 remake of Mike Huckaby's legendary track "Sandcastle".
Review: Making his first appearance on Constant Sound, Subb-An comes correct with the deadly breaks flow of "Access" that pivots neatly between bass music and the minimal house blueprint. "Rewire" is a much lighter affair thanks to a classy chord sound that modulates at the core of the track, bringing a melodic hook into the mix to wonderful effect. Burnski and Michael James then team up as Relic to deliver a remix of "Rewire" that's heavy on the funk, doing a great job of tweaking that chord line and pouring some serious heft into the lower regions of the frequency range.
Review: Cologne cronies ANDHIM add some bells and whistles to a vinyl only release they did last year on top of some new touches to their Buenos Aires EP. Pitched down monotonous rave tones spring to life in an acid tripping remix to "Duno" - getting all UK hardcore on your ass - with Polish duo Catz n Dogz building their drum machines, percussion layovers and white noise build ups to dramatic effect that extend themselves into tearing basslines and tropical crescendos. Benjamin Frohlich also chooses an exotic route in his remix to "Aires", with a spiralling arpeggiator and fluctuating keys pumping in sweet unison and melody.
Review: Its festival operation may have enjoyed its most successful year so far, but Dekmantel remains true to its underground roots on this look back at 2019. There's the off beat disco of Freedom Engine, Mathew Jonson's new project, as well as left of centre curveballs from Lamellen and Epsilove. That said, the Dutch collective also understand what's needed to rock a dance floor. Fittingly, 2019 includes the electronic disco of Jex Opolis "Earth Boy" and Betonkust & Palmbomen II's acrid acid workout "Underground Dance Floor", which both appeared on the label earlier this year- as well as the timeless icy techno classic of Terrace's "Bewitched".
Review: The term 'deep house' is applied so freely these days that at times it can seem meaningless, so be grateful that we still have the likes of Goddard around to remind us all what those words really mean! 'Fourth Dimension' is an instrumental jam centred around a squelchy bassline and fluttering, cascading synths, while 'Signals' channels vintage Chi-town deepness from the late 80s/early 90s. 'It's Not Cold In Tromso' is a more leftfield affair with pounding 4/4s and YMO-ish synths, while completing the package is the Jad & The Remix of the latter, a glacial, futuristic pass with acid house and electro influences.
Review: So at this point it's difficult to find the words to describe Night Bass, who have pushed out one of the most relentless release schedules we have ever witnessed here at JunoDownload over the last 12 months. The 4x4 giants have here assembled what they believe to be their best releases of 2019 into one handy selection, featuring absolute stormers from the likes of legendary faces such as Taiki Nulight, Shift K3y, Bushbaby, Notion, Corrupt, Phlegmatic Dogs and more, including a feature from label founder and worldwide dance music legend: AC Slater. What a year it has been for Night Bass, and we can't see them slowing down.
Review: Ichisan's 2017 debut album on Bordello A Parigi was arguably a little overlooked, which is something of a surprise considering the quality of the assembled Balearic, synth-wave, nu-disco and Italo-disco tracks on show. Hopefully the same fate won't befall his sophomore set, "Polykarp", because it's every bit as alluring and ear pleasing. It offers up a similarly colourful and vibrant collection of synth-heavy tracks, with highlights including the acid-flecked Italo/nu-disco fusion of "Polykarp", the Lindstrom style space disco positivity of "Kino-Sloga", the Todd Terje-esque Scandolearic dancefloor warmth of "Gonzo-Bossa Nova" and the Italian dream house revivalism of "Halo House".
One More Chance (Memory Tapes remix) - (3:35) 127 BPM
Review: French house legend Alan Braxe teamed up with Parisian "urban folk, ghetto funk and soulful pop" duo The Spimes to release the original 'Moments In Time' EP back in 2013, and now it's back with a whole bunch of new remixes, just in time for the new decade. The mood overall is "The Beloved meets 80s synth-pop in Ibiza", with the new rubs of 'Time Machine' ranging from the spangly and dancefloor-friendly (Le Crayon) to the laidback and dreamy (Chateaubriand), and 'One More Chance' served in your choice of glacially chilled or fat-assed n' strutty flavas courtesy of Memory Tapes and Lifelike, respectively.
Review: To celebrate the fifth birthday of their essential Riverette label, Spanish twosome Dos Attack has put together a series of sizzling EPs featuring a wealth of previously unheard music. Volume two begins with Throwing Snow's "Reminisce", a bass-heavy broken beat number rich in tribal percussion sounds, dreamy chords and eyes-closed melodies, and continues with a spot of organ-heavy Afrobeat-deep house fusion by Marcel Vogel ("Blaze"). Pepe joins the dots between turn-of-the-90s Italian deep house and Balearic nu-disco on the life-affirming warmth of "Linda's Retreat", while Medlar wraps rising and falling synthesizer melodies around a lo-fi drum machine beat on the equally lovely "606".
Review: Initially materialising as a fully fledged happening, Stil Vor Talent's latest compilation kicks off 2020 with a big bang. The Last Trip is a mini-compilation of party-friendly styles under the techno umbrella, rolled into 12 exclusive tracks - featuring legends and newcomers alike. There are two selections from Malandra Jr, with the seething banger "Poison" leading the charge, Citizen Kain is no stranger to the label either and his two contributions come in the from of the moody hypnotiser "Crush" followed by the adrenalised peak time groove "Balance". Elsewhere, Heerhorst get on his tunnel vision on the dark journey "Hydra", Transcode explores classic trance melodies and Reese basslines on the epic "Molecular Cloud", the ever reliable scene stalwart Olivier Giacamoto serves up the minimal tech house jam "Bonobo" and Made In Paris wraps up this fine package in style with the slick nightmoves of "Conjure".
Review: Shadow Child aka Simon Neale returns with a bang to Hot Creations. The title track is a wild techy banger, peppered with the type of high-pitched squelches that Timo Maas used to specialise in during the early 90s. Underpinned by a tough but bouncy bass, it makes for a superb piece of party techno. On "Get Busy", Neale delivers a stripped back but equally effective track; powered by rolling snares and featuring an insistent vocal sample at its heart, once again, the use of surging bass is sure to keep dance floors busy. Mark Broom also weighs in with a remix of "DBG", turning it into a rolling, filter-heavy techno track that is infused with incessant disco stabs.
Review: Hardgroove have released some serious names in the techno scene before now - the likes of Mella Dee, Borrowed Identity and Charles Green. It's no surprise considering Ben Sims is at the helm, and that equally explains the fact that the legendary Mark Broom has graced the label with his latest set of taut, main room club cuts. "Outta Sight" is a mean-tempered workout with a whiff of electro in the lead synth refrain, but it's not as outwardly malevolent as noisy juggernaut "L4LV". "Five/Four" has big room chords and massive splashing rides to get fists shaking - the consummate peak time belter. "TR1" takes things in a more dungeon-esque direction, using guttural rhythmic incisions to drag you into the depths of the night.
Review: Showcasing a wide range of sounds has always been very important to Dirtybird head honcho Claude Vonstroke. After 15 years of releasing two track EPs with a crazy A side and a deeper/weirder B side, he's been on to a winning formula all this time - so why stop now! Bringing the sound of the west (best) coast once again in the form of the boompty main room blip, bleep 'n blurp of "All My People In The House" (a big hit at this year's annual Campout we're sure), he then goes even further into the afterhours with studio assistant, friend and modular expert Wyatt Marshall - who collaborates with him on the sensual and evocative B side track "Youngblood".
Review: Delivering his first piece of solo produced music for more than a decade, Hot Creations welcome the legendary Danny Tenaglia with "Don't Turn Your Back" - a sweltering and hypnotic tribal tech house workout that calls to mind the seminal sounds he was responsible for at the turn of the millennium. On remix duties are some equally legendary figures of electronic music: Harry "Choo Choo" Romero of Subliminal fame injects some latin flair into the track, while the larger than life Carl Cox delivers not one but two renditions - the tough and functional main remix with dub techno inflections, and a slinky rolling groove on his "ASW" remix.
Review: Legendary compilers Strut continue their celebration of Ghana's indigenous highlife by
converging the voice and modern African sounds of Pat Thomas and the Kwaishibu Area Band with the alt-contemporary-isms of Detroit Swindle's house and disco. The pair reinforce the skipping, lighter and feel good rhythms of KAB's original instrumentation of "Yamona" and pitch the timeless and iconic voice of Pat Thomas central to the mix, resulting in a peak time number of mass appeal.
Don't Stop No Sleep (Tale Of Us remix) - (7:30) 128 BPM
Review: Radio Slave's 2014 release gets the remix treatment from some of the biggest names in house and techno. First up is Robert Hood's version, where the Detroit veteran takes the original track's vocal loop and sets it against firing percussion and a barrelling techno rhythm. It builds up to a heady climax courtesy of some churning chords. Meanwhile, the Tale of Us interpretation focuses on letting the vocal unravel over a juddering kick, wiry percussion and dramatic chords - while the formidable pairing of Roman Poncet and DJ Deep head down a similar route, albeit one inhabited by garbled synth hooks and crisp claps.
Review: Second time around for South Sudanese musician and political activist Emmanual Jal's "Kuar" single, which first landed on Innervisions a decade ago. That time, there was a lot of heat around Henrik Schwarz's headline-grabbing remix, which re-imagined Jal's traditional Sudanese track as a tech-tinged chunk of Afro-house brilliance rich in bold bass, trippy electronics, layered percussion and rave-ready late night riffs. That fine rework is given another airing here alongside a previously unheard Schwarz mix subtitled "Don't Let Your Vote Be Fake Newsed". This revision strips out much of Jal's vocal, instead offering a pumped up, riff-heavy variation on Schwarz's original remix.
Carlo Lio & Jon Rundell - "Parallax" - (6:25) 126 BPM
Hyperloop - "A Journey" - (6:56) 125 BPM
Secret Cinema - "Creaking" - (6:39) 127 BPM
Review: With a hot run of records this year coming from Pan-Pot, Amelie Lens and Industrialyzer alone, Second State Audio closes out 2019 with a compilation taking in tracks from label regulars and newcomers, with highlights coming from Secret Cinema, Gary Beck and Carlo Lio. The latter hooks up with John Rundell with a techy number of warehouse beats and neon synths in "Parallax", while Beck turns in a booming slab of vocal dub techno with "Rapture". Raffaele Rizzi supplies some darker synth and rave inspirations in "Fluorescence" with more '90s influnces abound in Hyperloop's "A Journey". For something more industrial and militant there's JNO & Giovanni Carozza' "Crispy" with Sara Simonit delivering some classy streamlined techno in "13 Guns". Chk chk.
Review: Kirk Degiorgio and Coyu's Suara label are probably not names that one would normally put together, but Arc Mode sees the revered techno producer deliver a tougher than usual release. On the title track he delivers a series of frazzled acid lines, realised against the backdrop of a firing rhythm, while "Redeemer" sees him venture farther down the rabbit hole, courtesy of a panel beating, pounding rhythm. By contrast, "Astral Cell" is deeper and more tripped out, thanks largely to its hypnotic pulses and rolling groove, but this release is all about the peak time, as displayed so effortlessly by Mark Broom's tough, metal-plated take on "Arc Mode".
Review: If you've ever heard 'Another Brick In The Wall' and thought "What this really needs is an extended Italo synth intro," then this is the EP for you, as the Pirate Edits crew serve up 16 more dancefloor reworks of vintage favourites including Sister Sledge's 'Lost In Music', Space's 'Carry On, Turn Me On', Chaka Khan's 'I Know You, I Live You' and The Joubert Singers' 'Stand On The word', as well as many other, more obscure disco and boogie nuggets. There's a slightly 'kitchen sink' approach to the production at times, but disco and funk spinners should still find plenty of fresh dancefloor ammunition here.
Review: Those with a good knowledge of Melbourne's vibrant club scene should already be familiar with Escape Artist, a producer who has previously released suitably psychedelic deep house club cuts on Salt Mines. This outing on Kalahari Oyster Cult picks up where previous EPs left off, first offering up a fine slab of psychedelic acid/electro/breakbeat/deep house fusion ("Another World"), before charging on to symphonic, hybrid broken techno/electro (the rather fine "Digtal Natives") and soaring, string-laden breakbeat-house lusciousness ("Inner City Pressure (Relief Mix)"). A must-have EP is completed by Florist's fine re-imagining of "Another World", which is deep, groovy, hypnotic and spaced-out while remaining formidably dancefloor friendly.
Review: Get Physical role into the new year with an ode to the past of a pretty one good just gone with a 2019 various artist compilation drawing upon the straight up club manner of the label alongside some curios from the year that was. These special interest tracks include the refreshingly cosmic aqua italo remix of Soul Spaces' "Lotus Eater", tomping soft club kicks adding that extra touch. There's acoustic fringe funk and atmospheric numbers to go by on Daniel Dubb and DJ T account, with sparse, reduced minimal taking up abstract forms in Enzo Leep & Alffie's "Morning Fragments". Always deep always trippy, the compilation goes off like fireworks on your new year's eve!
Review: It is certainly a big week for Jamie Jones' powerhouse Hot Creations, with a right banger by Mancunian Joseph Edmund, and now this riveting new EP by Italian native Fabio Neural - who teams up with growing Columbian talent DJ Fronter on the Brr Baby Brr EP. Some of you may remember their last track "Remeniss" on Toolroom a little while back. More surefire party starters on this one we can assure you: from the deep down and dirty rolling drama of the title track (which is perfect tackle for the afterhours), to the ravey peak time banger that is "Silver Star" (sure to cause some madness in the main room) and the pummelling dancefloor fury of "Downtown" which could have equally been at home on a label like Drumcode or Suara.
Review: With a slew of inter-threaded releases to her name since 2012 Brazlian DJ and producer Anna has slowly ascended through the ranks of techno by the way of releases for Novamute and Kompakt Extra. This has come by the way of labels like Twin Turbo and Terminal M with her arrival at Drumcode coming with three deep and driving techno tracks designed for warehouse play. Full throttle Detroit acid rears its head at large in "Dimension" while "Phase Two" sends in a deeper sail of luminous scandic trance and linear Italian techno. The title track merges both previous styles substituting acid lines for percussive bass stabs, with the added touch of rave atmospheres and arpeggios. Missiles.
Review: 2019 is a year which has seen a major shift in the landscape of music, both in regards to the status of the genre worldwide, and the evolution of the sound itself. One of the leading projects in the more tearout corner of bassline is of course CruCast, a label that remain at the forefront of the sound, shutting down raves around the country every weekend. This latest helping from them comes in the form of a twenty track strong compilation project, featuring some absolute heat from the likes of Papps, Moda, Tengu, JGE, Jay Faded and more. There are a couple of clear standouts for us, with the super original bass rhythms of 'Don't Bother Act' from Tekraw and Dread MC being an immediate earworm, along with the super oldschool niche vibes of 'On My Mind' from Vamos.
Review: About Disco's latest compilation focuses on the work of label boss Rafael Cancian, a Brazilian producer who recently made a rare appearance on Razor 'N' Tape. He begins with a deliciously warm and heady Balearic nu-disco revision of Corsican Brothers' "Beuna Vista", before offering up his own piano-powered peak-time groover, "Metaphors of Detroit", and the jaunty New Jersey deep house bump of Left & Right's "Eating The Corners". The highlights continue to appear thick and fast throughout, with our current favourites including a P-funk flavoured rework of C Da Afro, the bustling bass guitars and thrilling piano solos of "Sweet Flute" and the saucer-eyed rush of "Give Me The Moon", the adds another layer of delay-laden muscularity to Chilly's disco classic "For Your Love".
Review: Take a look down the tracklist of Fabric 20th anniversary release and you'll be met with a generation of artists that have helped shape the institution in all manner of ways, be it legendary DJ sets or residencies to previous releases to the FabricLive mix compilations and so on. Inside you'll find a who's who of genre influencers, be they Margaret Dygas and Marcel Dettmann with their European minimal and techno connection, to the more left field and UK-centralised club sounds from Pinch & Trim, Call Super and Special Request. Classics have been leafed from Source Direct, UNKLE and Shackleton, with B.Traits, Maya Jane Coles and Daniel Avery rankable alongside Sascha, Nina Kraviz and Groove Armada in filling a most influential time capsule of club music and DJ culture history.
Review: Within the UK, we have seen a real rise in popularity with the more experimental, unusual side of bass music, a sound that the team at Jelly Bean Farm have now been championing for a hot minute. This latest four track piece from Squane is a perfect example of just how cool it can get, as we kick off proceedings with a look at the silky subs and subtle breakbeats of the title track 'Vesta'.The smooth vibes continue as we parade through the luscious synthesizer sweeps of 'Crossed Wires' and clicky rhythms of 'Peculiar Duality'. Finally, 'Kamek' lands with colourful percussive melodies and bubbling atmospherics to round us off with a bang!
Review: Philip Lauer's long-running relationship with Permanent Vacation continues with a release that deftly mines 80s influences. The title track sees the storied producer marry cascading Chicago drums and a pulsating bassline with synth pop melodies that come together to create an infectious dance floor track. On "You Know", a similar approach is audible, this time with epic melodies accompanying soaring vocals. In contrast, "Body Chck" is a low-slung electro roller, featuring high pitched vocal samples. But it's only a temporary divergence and on "Ctron E", he moves back towards the dance floor with uplifting melodies and a high-tempo electronic disco groove.
Review: Bergsonist aka Selwa Abd follows 2017's From Dualism To Monism long player with this collection of left of centre tracks. Drawing on her Eastern roots, Middle resounds to organic drum sounds. At times chaotic and dense, audible on the title track's clattering arrangement, in other instances club-friendly and direct - just check "Gaza Border Violence" or the electronic groove of "Otology" - it marks her out as an artist with a unique approach. In case you are in any doubt about Bergsonist's capabilities, on "Magnesium" she deconstructs beat down house and adds extra, textured layers that are nothing short of hypnotic.
Rick Wade - "In Mah Mind" (Harrison BDP remix) - (7:35) 127 BPM
Harrison BDP - "Watching The World Go By" - (9:34) 126 BPM
1-800 Girls - "Don't Wanna Stop" - (6:36) 125 BPM
Harrison BDP - "Red Sky" - (6:18) 128 BPM
Zoo Look - "Next Time" - (6:23) 125 BPM
Contours - "5th Planet" - (5:43) 125 BPM
Adryiano - "U Used 2 Know Me" - (6:58) 129 BPM
Soela - "Sensual" - (6:06) 125 BPM
Review: Now into its fifth year, KGW's Shall Not Fade imprint has long been a reliable source of dusty deep house and rugged, warehouse-ready workouts. To kick-start 2020, the label has decided to celebrate this facet of their output via an expansive compilation of previously released highlights. There's a peak-time ready feel from start to finish, with our picks of a very impressive bunch including the bustling, riff-heavy techno pump of KETTAMA's "In The Garage", the sunrise-ready, melody-heavy bliss of Harrison BDP's epic "Watching The World Go By", the sleazy, acid-fired growl of Big Miz's "Primordial Soup" and the dusty-but-sparkling, emotive rich broken house brilliance of Contours' "Fifth Planet". In a word: essential.
Review: German percussionist Kolja Gerstenberg makes no attempt to hide his love for the drums on this razor sharp drop for Lumberjacks In Hell, building on his previous outings on Suol and Smile For A While. The drums are sizzling hot on "Feel Yo", tastefully overdriven and embellished with some MPC-style sample juggling that should satisfy those who like their house tracks hot as Dante's inferno. "Where They're From" is no slouch either, keeping the pressure up with a liberal dose of soul poured in for good measure. The keys and live bass on "Want You" add to the feverish mood, and then "Get Over" sends things spiraling out on a Latin-spiced cosmic journey.
Review: Here's something to set the pulse racing: a brand new album from sometime Classic Music Co contributor Eli Escobar, a producer who has proved to be one of the most distinctive and consistent in house music over the last few years. "Last Summer" contains a mixture of short interludes and inspired, almost uniformly dancefloor-friendly workouts that bring together a range of complimentary influences. Our picks include the atmospheric and acid-fired deep house warmth of "Flashing Lights", the muscular peak-time Moroder-isms of "(All Night) Rhythm", the melodious, sun-kissed Balearic house brilliance of "Blu" and the woozy warmth of "Last Night".
Review: As the year comes to a close, we can safely say that it has been an incredible 12 months for the more experimental sounds within electronic music. We have noticed a real surge in individualism, with this latest drop from the Beat Machine team providing a perfect example. For this one, Soreab is joined by Parallax's sharp vocal prowess on a system-ready title track named 'Wrinkles', built around tripletted rhythms and rolling kick drum patterns. We continue to take in the taste of originality as the acidic bass tones and super choppy drum rhythms on 'Watchme' take us for a real ride into the unknown. On remix duty for this one, we see Basic Rhythm give a tidy re-lick to 'Wrinkles', with the ever-ready Benton on hand to dish out a vibrant dose of breaksy goodness on his overhaul of 'Watchme'.
Review: Truncate debuts on Pets Recordings with a fine jacking release. "Pressure" sees the US producer divert somewhat from his chosen script, dropping a raw, analogue track. Built on a skeletal rhythm and pile-driving percussive, these elements support a pitch-bent vocal. The title track marks a return to the type of sound that Truncate is more commonly known for. However, in part, the aesthetic of "Pressure" remains, thanks to the use of insistent percussion and intense siren riffs unravelling over one of Truncate's typical rolling groove. DJ Haus is tasked with reworking "Pressure" and turns in an excellent version that focuses on fusing the vocal sample with a grinding bass.
Review: Swiss DJ Sassy J now curates the second compilation in the Patchwork series, for Dutch imprint Rush Hour. For the past 14 years, she has run a night of the same name in her hometown Bern, and another in London. Showcasing music by many of the artists that have joined her throughout the years in clubs, on the radio and at home, this release is made up of new and unreleased tracks, capturing a sound that has continued to evolve in its restless search for new musical directions. From the deep, soulful and emotive tones of Warm's "Blue Sunrise" or 2000Black's "Plastic Jam", to Afro influenced spiritual life music as heard by the lady herself (with Alex Attias) on "Jelly Bubble Rise", through to RH label staple Aardvark's hi-tech soul deconstruction "Aap Noot" and Mr Fingers stone cold classic "Survivor" - Sassy J takes you on an evocative sonic journey from start to finish.
Review: Since making his debut on Peetah Music in 2001, Demuir has built up a rock solid catalogue of club-ready deep house jams. Here the Toronto-based producer follows up recent outings on Robsoul, Hot Creations and Desolat with a first appearance on Heist Recordings. He hits the ground running with a muscular deep house loop jam weighty enough for peak-time plays ("Werq Feel Gruv Love"), before layering up spacey synths, heady string samples and rubbery house beats on "The 3nity Returneth (Dub Mix)"."Philippine Sunrise" is arguably the best of a strong bunch: a melodious, warm and intoxicating deep house workout full of intricate musical detail and colourful electronics. That comes back by a tasty revision by Lady Blaktronika that sounds like it was designed for locked-in, late night dancefloors.
Review: Each edition of the Four To The Floor series always presents four tracks that are some of the strongest secret weapons from the sets of label co-head Solomun. Now in its 16th installment, be captivated by Lone Romantic Maceo Plex on the epic dancefloor drama of "Mutant Magic" and its killer vocal, Canadian veteran Fairmont is in fine form and serves up the moody tunnel vision of "Plastic Head TV" while Nico Garreaud's "Louisville Lip" (Abaze edit) is aimed squarely at the main room at peak time and The Vinyl Depreciation Society provide more sonic narratives - best heard under the strobelight - on "Princept".
Review: The way Audaz has been churning out these Lolita collections lately, you'd think "possession of an unreleased re-edit" had just been made a crime under German law! But the quality standard shows no sign of slipping, so that's hardly cause for complaint. Standouts of this fourth volume include '038', which revisits Kim And Rasa's obscure 1982 Ghanaian funk/rap jam 'Love Me For Real', '035' with its fusion of country rock guitar and sweet female disco vox, and '037', which reworks Brass Construction's 'Changin' from 1975. Dead Or Alive get the Lolita treament, too, on '032'.
Review: First unleashed on vinyl this time last year, Flight Mode and Joel Brittain's first collaborative EP has finally made it to digital download. This is undoubtedly a good thing, because "Burn This" is superb. In its' original form, the track is a near perfect fusion of dub disco heaviness - chunky bass guitar, delay-laden horn snuppets, crunchy drums - and the kind of electronic instrumentation and mood-enhancing chords more often found in straight-up deep house cuts. There are two tidy accompanying remixes: a sparkling, synth-heavy Balearic house revision by Medlar and a suitably trippy, spaced out Flight Mode dub that's arguably even more driving and floor-friendly than the original mix.
Review: One of two turntablist-oriented compilations this week from School Yard Breaks, but where 'Dusty Fingers' is jazzy and cinematic in mood, this one's smooth and soulful, with cuts from well-known veteran players like Mandrill, Larry Sanders, Con Funk Shun and Silver Convention nuzzling up alongside contributions from lesser-known 60s and 70s artists (The Soul Tornadoes, Kansas City Express, Lee Williams) and contemporary practitioners (Finland's Soul Investigators). Highlights include Silver Convention's phat, sleazy 'Madhouse', Lee Moses's country-soul-blues take on 'Hey Joe', Art Butler's Hammond-tastic 'Soul Brother' and a blistering James Brown medley courtesy of the Max Greger Orchestra.
Review: One thing we have noticed about the CruCast release model, is that it is perfectly balanced between their more established faces and a constant wave of exciting newcomers. This release pays homage to the first of those options as CruCast roll out the red carpet for an all-star affair as the likes of Skepsis, Darkzy, Bru-C, TS7, Tsuki and more come together for a scorching selection of brazen bassy badness. There are some tasty pieces involved, but the ones that leap out the most have to include Skue-K's colourful rework of Bru-C & D Double's 'Heater', along with a vibrant VIP mix of 'Jungle' from Nu Aspect.
Review: Some six months on from his last appearance on Lost Palms, rising star Harrison BDP returns to the Shall Not Fade offshoot with another must-check EP. It's arguably one of his most energetic and forthright releases to date, too, with opener "The Devil In Disguise" cheerily doffing a cap towards the piano-sporting, gospel-tinged techno rush of Motor City artists Terrence Parker and Floorplan. In contrast "Dark Water" is spacey, deep and dubby - if no less dancefloor-ready - while title track "Cathedrals" is a lusciously melodious shuffle into heavily electronic deep house territory. As if that wasn't enough to set the pulse racing, "Reflections" sees the Cardiff producer brilliantly join the dots between jazz-house, two-step garage and futurist techno.
Review: With industrial techno brandishing its other cheek these days with a burgeoning cast of new producers on the scene, it's the likes of Ansome and I Hate Models that this sound is looking to. Add some heavier Italian wares and harder Australian stuff from Rvde and Tymon, and you have the summation of Perc Trax in 2019. With Ali Wells' dropping in himself with the tongue in cheek Three Tracks To Send To Your Ghost Producer EP, this compilation lifts a visceral selection of music to feature across the label this year. All menacing and with a story to tell, Perc Trax in 2019 presented a fresh and hazardous form of ballistic techno in its approach to crunching drums and new school industrial aggression. Check it here.
Review: Originating from the Istanbul electronic music scene, Zurich-based Onur Ozman adds to his busy schedule of releases this year by debuting on Jamie Jones' Hottrax. Having previously released on Constant Circles, Sincopat and Kwench Records, Ozman brings his delicate and emotive production to the forefront for these three originals on the At Spoerri's EP. From the bittersweet and evocative title track, the tough rolling main room bounce of "KMIYH" and the emotive off-kilter electro of "Warhol". As a bonus, Amsterdam based duo ANOTR deliver a remix of the title track, and while these guys may be Dutch they sure know how to nail that timeless UK tech house sound.