Review: With Buzzin' Fly approaching the final curtain (the label's last release will drop in June 2013), boss man Ben Watt is in retrospective mood. He's decided to reissue all of the label's early material on a series of comprehensive digital anthologies. This bulging, 34-track collection - the second - focuses on 2005 and 2006. It's something of a time capsule, offering thrilling flashbacks to a time when it was still unusual to find deep house tracks dominating dancefloors (see Justin Martin's excellent remix of Watt's "Love Cat (Holding On)" and Ame's classic rework of Rodamaal's "Insomnia"). Along the way, there are forgotten highlights (a stirring John Tejada remix of Jimpster) and surprising collaborations (Estelle - remember her - hooking up with Ben Watt).
Review: Following news that Ben Watt no longer intends to put out new music on Buzzin' Fly, the compiling and re-releasing of some of the highlights from the label's back catalogue is timely. This third volume focuses on the high point of the label's output, the golden period from 2007 to 2008. The dominant sound here is trancey and melodic, with synth sweeps combined with sensuous strings and woodwind samples. Manoo & Francois A embody this approach on the windswept "Magnetic", where epic, acid-led hooks build over dubbed out drums, while Pedro Madeira's "Long Shadows" moves from lush strings into an epic break down. Despite this approach, there is still space for classic US house, as the dubby drums of Dennis Ferrer & Steve Martinez' version of Ben Watt's "Lone Cat (Holding On)" demonstrates.