Review: Stanton Warriors have been on a mission to bring us the finest broken beat and heavy bass on Punks Music since 2001. Here the debut volume of the their new 'Punks Selection' series is curated by Mafia Kiss and focuses in 'on the deeper/stripped sounding side of the label's roster'. There is a whopping 22 track featured, as well as a one-hour DJ mix. Highlights include the urgent, haunted bounce of "The Oracle" by Leda Stray, the sultry, late night breakbeats of "K2" by Aloka and the scattershot ghetto beats of "Check Me Out" by Sly One.
Review: New Year doesn't officially kick off until Viper smack you silly with their yearly "Drum & Bass Annual". 2017's edition smacks even harder than usual with no less than 10 exclusives including a Culture Shock/Dimension style roll out from Misfit, Halflight's "Communication Failure" that has enough power to cause a civil war and North Base's "Woman" that has so much seductive soul power to cause a mess in your trousers. Elsewhere The Voss & NC-17 pay respect to the Book Of The Bad on "Mojave" and Blaine Stranger sends you off to cosmoses unknown on "By Your Side". And that's just a handful of the unreleased cuts amid some of the label's biggest releases in recent times.
Review: The Smooth N Groove imprint have become renowned for their expansive compilation projects, bringing together a range of high quality original drum and bass recordings. They continue their hot streak here with volume 2 of their 'Hidden In The Crates' series, featuring belters from the likes of Greekboy, Passive, Wyman, Twintone, Jay Dubz and a host of other names. For us, the standouts are immediately clear, with the harmonic strings and epic atmospherics of A.K.A & soulTec's 'You Should Be Here' being a major standout. The smooth junglist subs and warm notation of 'Adventure Time' from Conrad Subs also deserves a nod, along with the clean drum work of Dave Owen's 'Kiss & Tell'.
Review: Mousse T's perennially popular German house label are containing their current compilation release frenzy with this new installment in the series that explores the deeper end of their tastes. Or, to be more specific, the tastes of Deepwerk who selects the album's pleasingly diverse tracklist. It's quite a journey, taking in stoned jazz-hop "Cosmic Surfin", the sublime deep house synth-fest of "Burn Baby Burn", soulful G-Funk (Warren G's "I Need A Light") and even Roachford, who returns from Alan Partridge-aided exile with "Work It Out".
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: Aside from killing it on the artwork front, the Iberian Juke label has established itself as one of the leaders in the footwork game. There isn't much that label has released which we haven't gotten excited about, so this new compilation feels like one of those mega-packs which we'll blast out on the speakers over the next few weeks. Believe us, with the quantity of music going through our charts, that is quite an unbelievable achievement for any label. Rather than try to unpack the entire comp for you, and actually risk spoiling the fun, we simply got to say that this is one of the most diverse juke releases we've ever heard. The genre can suffer from isolations at times, risking to sound rather uniform, but this gear touches many different points of heat spots for us. There's everything from jazz to techno in there, all blended into a delicious cocktail of fast-paced percussion bundles and high-tech drum swings. We highly recommend this thang...
Review: For the third volume in his consistently superb AOR Global Sounds compilation series, Charles Maurice has largely opted to showcase tracks that combine West Coast rock flavours with disco and soul influences. It's a heady and intoxicating collection, where the blue-eyed soul/jazz-funk fusion of "Girl" by Stratus rubs shoulders with the horn-heavy, electrofunk era AOR cheeriness of Willy Santana's "Mais Uma Chance" and the '80s soul smoothness of Omega Sunrise's "Heartbreaker". Other highlights include the rubbery boogie bass and Steely Dan guitar passages of Billy Always' "More Than A Minute" and the drowsy warmth of Jon Konteau's synth-laden "The Heckler", which comes on like the Steve Miller Band jamming with Moon B.
Review: The later half of 2012 has seen trance legend Solarstone really pick up the pace again. Pushing things forward with his label group, releasing some of his finest singles in recent times, and now this brilliant compilation to round things off perfectly. Compiled by the man himself with two discs (one mixed by Orkidea), 'Pure Trance' does what it says on the box, showcasing all corners of the genre. Highlights across the 30 tracks include; Temple One 'In Her Eyes', Ronski Speeds mix of 'Euphonia', and Michael Cassette's remix of Orkidea 'Sun Dow'. There is of course plenty of showings from Solarstone himself.. You need this in your life!
Review: Having recently grabbed our attention with lead single "Pictures", this 26 year old producer now unveils his self-proclaimed 'psychedelic hip-hop' album aptly titled "The Trip". Aside from the single, there's a further 17 tracks on here brimming with strange sounds and ideas, from the Public Enemy-sampling "Once Again Back (Tune In)" to crackling 60s piano clips with hip-hop beats ("Psychedelic Club Scene") and the stoner DJ Shadow-isms of "Dexy Lovecraft" via hammonds and big beat ("Clouds of Zero"). Far out man!