Review: As one of the most exciting electronic music imprints currently working in the UK, High Class Filter's Scuffed Recordings return here for another tasty selection as they bring forward the third edition of their 'Scuffed Presents' series. We kick off with Dubrunner's exceptional original as the metal drum chops and unpredictable rhythms of 'Zoya's Trip' wade into view, followed closely by the perfectly distorted 808 movements and percussive involvement of 'Cave People' from An Avrin. Next, we take a peek at the Terror mix of Odiham from Avernian, another stuttered masterclass in rhythmic ideas and funky influence, before the smoothened breakbeat themes of 'Vivid Dream Of Death' from Young Muscle brings us to a close.
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: Faraone returns to Be As One after a few years' absence, this time accompanied by Hertz Collision. "Elevate" sees the pair deliver a dub chord-led techno track that resounds to tough drums but also features a hypnotic vocal sample. On "Solchi", the pair again draw on dub influences, but this time wrap these musical elements around a stripped back, shuffling groove. "Campo Di Marte" is the toughest track on offer, with pummelling drums providing the backdrop for looped riffs. The label has enlisted the services of Alexander Kowalski as remixer, with the veteran producer turning "Elevate" into a lean, rolling workout, tailored for underground clubs.
Review: We are here in-tuned to a fantastic display of production mastery as InGrooves US invite 808 state into the forefront of their outlay, with this stunning new album entitled 'Transmission Suite'. Combining acidic themes on tracks such as 'Tokyo, Tokyo' and 'Angol Angol' with some incredibly vibrant percussive work on 'Landau', '13 13' and more, we can safely say this album has something for everyone. We hear 808 State really travel through different dimensions of sounds, with favourites including the stuttered drum flushes of 'Cannonball Waltz', the 80's style synthesizer switch ups of 'Trinity' and super cool breaksy rolls of 'Skylon'.
Review: The Bek Audio anniversary celebrations continue apace with this fine second volume. First up is PTTRN with the percussive, drum-heavy "180621 S61.1", which is every bit as purist as its title suggests. Label owner Gary Beck takes the tempo up a notch with the rolling groove and snappy percussion of "Disgraced Loon" - but smart vocal snatches and chord stabs ensure that it doesn't veer into banging sameness. Petter B's "Second Day" approaches intensity from a different angle, thanks to the use of shimmering woozy chords, while on "Patterns", a collaboration between Beck and Alan Fitzpatrick, melodies also make an appearance - although on this occasion they flit in and out of the duo's steely drums and crisp percussion.
Review: Vorm Variaties (sic) is a new series from Alden Tyrell, which is due to yield a total of five records. In contrast to his Italo-inspired records, this first instalment is pure warehouse techno mayhem. The aptly-named "Lash Out" is built on concrete kicks and a sledgehammer rhythm, with Tyrell deploying a stuttering vocal sample to great effect. "Game Theory" isn't quite as visceral, but it does uses similar tactics: the backing track is tough and jacking and there's also a looped vocal sample, but his love for melodies resurfaces in the form of an infectious, churning chord sequence.
Review: On the latest instalment of the long-running DJ-Kicks series, Peggy Gou paints a vivid picture. It starts with the widescreen ambience of Space Time Continuum's 1993 debut, "Fluresence", before moving into her own, cosmic "Hungboo" and the niggling acid of Pearson Sound's "Earwig", a contemporary cousin to Plastikman's Musik. There are other endearing oddities here, such as Andrew Weatherall's seductive house version of Sly & Lovechild's "The World According To..." and the raw drums of Kyle Hall's "Flemmenup". Gou has also included a Detroit techno classic, Psyche's "Crackdown", but balances this out with new, unreleased tracks from I:Cube - "Cassette Jam 1993" sees the maverick French producer deliver a frazzled, hazy affair - and Hiver's pulsating, acid-flecked "Pert".
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: Next up on Me Me Me is label owner Man Power with a riotous release. It starts off with the pulsating "Night War", which fuses dramatic stabs with a solid, pulsating electronic groove. On "1011", Man Power opts for a more grimy approach, with a scuffled rhythm and staccato beats underpinning churning chords. Meanwhile "Sweet Cornelius" sees him deliver a more stripped back take on this track, with noisy bleeps and rickety drums prevailing. On "Night War", he opts for a more upbeat approach, as wild electronic stabs unfold over a pumping groove and incessant snare rolls. Rounding off the release, Zombies in Miami delivers a tough, acid-heavy take on "War".
Review: Despite its name, Mella Dee's new release isn't a mindlessly banging, peak-time affair. The title track resounds to hypnotic chimes and bells, as he lays down a rolling, streamlined groove. Similarly, "Silver Street" revolves around a lithe, frenetic rhythm that features skipping percussion and a subtle aesthetic, even though it clocks in at close to 140bpm. On "Jack U Later (Floatation Device Mix)", the UK producer maintains a similar tempo but goes deeper, with hypnotic electronic hooks unravelling over solid drums. Dee's approach makes for a complex, masterfully crafted EP, as the sample-heavy, wiry minimalism of "Stack Select" further demonstrates.
Review: It sounds like Rekids has gone back to its roots. On Marco Faraone's third release for the label, a tough, sample-heavy house sound prevails; it's audible on the title track, where vocals are chopped up and layered over steely tribal drums, insistent thunder claps and ominous chord stabs. "Hardgroove Community" features a faster tempo, but some of the same elements - the looped vocal samples and tough kicks - remain at the heart of this arrangement. Meanwhile, "Survive" sees the Italian producer opt for a more tracky approach, with the track's name intoned in monotonous fashion over a heads-down rhythm. "Not A Crime" completes this old school-inspired EP, with churning chords and joyous screeches unravelling over banging drums
Review: Dutch techno legend Orlando Voorn has opened up his archive, for the first of what will be an ongoing artist-focused series brought to you by Above Board Projects. Spread across two volumes, the compilation will feature tracks from many of Voorn's pseudonyms including Fix, Baruka, The Ghetto Brothers, Mute and many more. This initial release features the sensual Motor City inspired techno-soul of "Life Beyond The Clouds" featuring vocals by the one and only Blake Baxter (Tresor) and the utterly hypnotic "DX Me Silly" from 1992 which channels the same vibe as fellow legend Robert Hood id around the same period with its linear minimalism.