Review: A UK disco master with almost 30 years experience, when Dave Lee aka Joey Negro presents his selections we all sit up and listen. Here's his take on the year that was and it's brimming with 19 rich and rewarding gems to see us through the holidays. Highlights include the deep gospel shuffle of "Reach Out (Atjaz remix)" by Sean McCabe, the sizzling crackle of camp disco accelerator "Unique (New York Underground mix)" by Danube Dance & Kim Cooper and Pezzner's warm synth funk rework of "Candy Coated Perfection" by Opolopo and Diane Charlemagne.
Review: Half the fun of each new Ibiza season is the accompanying DJ mix albums that ensue. Here it's the turn of Z Records' legend, Joey Negro, who compiles and selects Z Records Presents Ibiza 2017. With Joey Negro you know you will always get an expert blend of house and disco, new and old. Here we see exclusives rub shoulders with first time digital virgins. Highlights include Dr Packer's thumping edit of "Change Position (88)" by Brooklyn Express, the hazy bass twangs of "Phantom" by A Band Called Flash and the warm electro of "It's More Fun To Compute" by Negro himself.
Review: Bass is all over the place in the UK at the moment, so much so that this is already the second instalment in this recent compilation series. Boasting some heavy hitters including number one hit "Feel The Love" by Rudimental feat John Newman, we get 40 tracks spanning drum and bass, dupstep and electro house. Highlights include the fluffy pop meets dubstep of Netsky's "Come Alive", the wobble-hop of Foreign Beggars' "Flying To Mars", the future drum and bass of "I Remember" by Culture Shock and the epic synths of Camo & Krooked's "Further Away".
Review: By now, we should all know what to expect from Toolroom's "Poolside Ibiza" compilation strand, namely groovy nu-disco, house and laidback Balearic beats inspired by afternoons spent lounging by the water in stonking White Isle heat. Naturally, there are plenty of gems to be found amongst the 40 unmixed tunes selected by chosen DJs Moullinex and Xinobi, from their own collaborative post-punk/dub number "X Marks The Spot", to the slick '80s synth-pop dreaminess of Tensnake's fine remix of Xinobi's "Far Away Place" and the drowsy, Morricone-influenced soundscape weirdness of Simple Symmetry's remix of Moscoman's "I Ran". Throw in some seriously good cuts from Felipe Gordon, Donald Dust, Pin Up Club and Meera (whose carnival-ready boogie jam "Fine Without You" stands out), and you have a fine collection of summery cuts.
Review: Judging by Toolroom's latest mammoth collection, the sound of the White Island in 2014 will be uplifting house music. Granted, there are some diversions on this compilation thanks to Eric Sneo's rattling minimalism and Doorly's jacking "Thunder Clap", but these are few and far between. Even Kelis gets in on the vocal house sound, with Breach chopping up the singer's vocals on his tracky version of "Rumble". Breach faces stiff competition from his peers though, with Tensnake turning London Grammar's "Hey Now" into an epic vocal anthem. However, the stand out contribution comes from a real veteran and MK's piano-led take on Lancelot's "Givin' It Up (feat Antony & Cleopatra)" recalling classic KMS.
Review: It sounds like Ibiza 2013 will be remembered as the year that the piano returned. At least that's the sense one gets from listening to the latest Toolroom compilation. From C2's edit of new school house act Bicep's "Vision of Love" to the trance meets old school techno of Kaiserdisco's "Night & Day", the plaintive ivory keys loom large. Of course there are exceptions, like Breach's stripped back, abrasive remix of Jamie Jones' "Tonight In Tokyo", but when even the darker tracks, like Ejeca's "Witchdokta" sampling, break beat house monster "Rosario", drops into an evocative piano break down, you know that it's the dominant sound of the season.