DJ Ermi feat Gracy Lagana – Never Mind

June 25, 2015 in Singles

DJ Ermi feat Gracy Lagana Never Mind Inspires RecordsTwo very different mixes to choose from on this latest from our old friend DJ Ermi over in Italia.

The Original Slow Mix is lazy, laidback, violin-sporting downtempo number… think slo-mo/cosmic disco with slight Indian/middle eastern overtones and you’re somewhere in the ballpark. I’m loving this mix personally – and I’d be loving it even more were I sat watching the sun go down at an Ibiza beach bar – but if you’re more a “strictly repetitive beats”-type guy/gal then have no fear, because on the flip you’ll find a House Mix that’s got something of a DJ Spen/Dennis Ferrer kinda feel.

It was the latter that grabbed yours truly the most on first listen, but the more I hear that slo-mo original the more it wins me over.

Out: This week on Juno Download, Stompy and Google Play (“no Traxsource no Beatport we are really underground!” reads the hype sheet)

About: This comes as ever on Ermi’s own Inspires Records, who you can find on Bandcamp, on Facebook, on Soundcloud or at their own website.

Various – The Sound Of The Spirit Wrestlers Sampler

May 25, 2014 in Singles

The Sound Of The Spirit WrestlersLast one for today and it’s another debut release from another new label… and indeed another new label with quite a heritage behind it, as Spirit Wrestlers is headed up by none other than Pete Woosh, of Digs & Woosh (DiY) fame.

PJ Principle AKA fellow DiY-er Peej’s Holy Mountain opens proceedings, a midtempo house groover with shape-throwing synthy bleeps straight outta the mid-90s sitting atop a bed of warm chords and lingering pads as various disembodied voices float in and out of the mix… a proper deep house summer jam and no mistake, Grandad. Jericho Park (who are Woosh and Positive Divide) then give us two cuts: the stripped, bassy and bouncy Some Time Ago that has that classic DiY/Smokescreen vibe in spades, and Acid Love which marries the 303 squelch you’re expecting to a Colonel Abrams vocal that you probably weren’t. Lastly, Woosh and the IKs’ Andy Riley team up as Gallery Sounds to bring us 3 Minutes Squared, a departure into more slo-mo, cosmic disco-ish pastures complete with a very 80s vocal and some gloriously squelchy synth action.

Back in the early 90s, it was hearing Digs & Woosh* DJ that really turned yours truly onto deep house in the first place. So with DiY marking their 25th anniversary this year it’s not really surprising that the man’s rather good at it…

Out: This week

About: You can find Spirit Wrestlers on Soundcloud and Facebook.

*and Miles Hollway & Elliot Eastwick – credit where it’s due!

Headpocket – Through The Round Window

May 20, 2014 in Singles

Headpocket Through The Round Window No StaticA three-track EP here from No Static Recordings which the hype sheet is touting as nu disco, but which sounds a lot like house as well.

The title track is a Balearic-ish affair, all majestic synth sweeps and languidly throbbing bassline… think Northern Exposure-era Sasha and Digweed only with a much bigger smile on its face! Tash Hag is up next, a more uptempo cut predicated around a piano line that definitely makes me think of Ibiza days of yore, while finally Revetment actually does operate firmly within nu-disco territory, and has something of that “sitting on a yacht in Marbella listening to Daniele Baldelli” vibe that we know and love Sare Havlicek for… not to mention what sounds like an 80s synth reproduction of a Hammond organ sound.

Out: Friday (23 May)

About: This comes on No Static Recordings, who you can find on Facebook or at their own website.

Zalman Richter – Kosmische Quallen

May 7, 2014 in Singles

Zalman Richter Kosmische Quallen 7cloudAnother single-track release here, and one that sees us continuing this week’s inadvertent theme of abrupt contrasts as we leap in a single genre-agnostic bound from the uptempo filter disco of Vanilla Ace and co to this slice of moody electronica from Zalman Richter.

Kosmische Quallen starts with an atmospheric intro of lingering synth washes and off-kilter, near-bruk drums, then adds… er, more lingering synth washes and some decidedly wonky, analogue stabs. And that’s pretty much it for the whole of its 7:20 duration. Under ‘genre’, the hype sheet for this one says “Techno/deep house”. I’d say it’s neither, and both… with a dash of Krautrock, a hint of cosmic disco and more than a slight influence from the LA beat scene thrown in for good measure.

Either way, it’s interesting, unusual stuff – experimental without being overly self-indulgent. And a refreshing change from an endless stream of functional but formulaic tech-house records!

Out: This week

About: This comes on 7cloud, a San Francisco-based label who can be found on Soundcloud.

Kim & Buran – Fly To Sea EP

February 27, 2014 in Singles

Kim & Buran Fly To Sea EP Nang RecordsMore of Nang’s usual exquisitively executed nu-disco goodness here courtesy of Russian duo Kim & Buran.

In total you get two mixes of the title cut, plus Modern Music and Sitizen. In its original form, Fly To Sea sits somewhere between retro cosmic/Italo fare and the kind of dreamy, star-spangled soul peddled by the Sunburst Band or even those Phenomenal Handclappers. The remix of the same comes from Irregular Disco Workers, whose slightly more floor-friendly take eases back on the dreamy synths and beefs up the beats… but only a tiny bit in either case. Modern Music is a decidedly 80s-informed cut with a spoken, vocodered “dance music” (male) vocal and all manner of analogue synth shenanigans, while finally Sitizen ventures more resolutely into the kind of cosmic/Italo pastures we were just discussing.

The Nang faithful will be more than happy with this one. I certainly am… with the original version of the title track especially.

Out: This week

About: Find Nang Records here, here and here (Soundcloud, Facebook, web)

Rishi K – Reach For The Sky EP

September 4, 2013 in Singles

Rishi K Reach For The Sky EP Cosmic DiscoThree tracks in five mixes here from the ever-prolific Rishi Gargour, AKA San Francisco-based producer Rishi K.

The title track’s a summery, soulfully-inclined deep house groove complete with sizzling soaraway sax; Zweistein then tuffens things up a little on a mix with fiercer percussion, and with the struttin’ jazz bassline brought further forward. Perfect Mistake is another instrumental cut inna dreamy, prog-tinged kinda vein (you know how Rishi does) that comes with an even more prog-leaning refix from Brian Morse; but the standout for me here is Digital Skyscape, a proper west coast bumper in the Salted/Transport/Bounce House vein, complete with an insistent hip-house-ish “this place is for the underground sound… underground sound” vocal.

San Francisco may not be quite the world leader on the international house stage that it used to be, but Rishi’s not doing a bad job of keeping the place on the map right now!

Out: This week

About: Rishi’s had stuff on more labels than I can count; this time out he’s doing the do for Amsterdam’s Cosmic Disco, who you can (also) find on Facebook and Soundcloud.

Kim & Buran – Voyager

June 1, 2013 in Singles

Kim & Buran Voyager NangThis is one of those records that makes me go, ‘Oh come on… what the hell am I meant to say here? Really?’. Cos it’s on Nang – home to all manner of revivalist cosmic/Italo disco shenanigans – and it’s got three tracks called Voyager, Arp and Flight B. By the time I even tell you this record exists, you already know what it sounds like, and you’ve already got a pretty good idea if you need it in your collection or not.

So I’ll just tell you that Kim & Buran hail from St Petersburg, that this is refreshingly free of any of those nasty synthpop/electro/indie-dance tinges that can sometimes creep into this kinda tackle, and that I could listen to this shit all day. And then I’ll leave you to make your own mind up.

Out: This week

About: Here’s where to find Nang online.

Rissa Garcia – How Many Times

May 22, 2013 in Singles

Rissa Garcia How Many Times Cosmic Disco RecordsNYC-based producer and Nightchild Records boss Rissa Garcia has shown a lot of love for TIWWD on the Facebook page lately… now at last I get the chance to return the favour as she steps up for the latest from Cosmic Disco Records.

There are four mixes of How Many Times to choose from. The original, Jon Billick and Zweistein mixes all generally operate in the territory marked ‘deep and soulful’, sporting a yearning male vocal, and as such there’s not a huge amount to choose between them, though Zweistein’s rub does feature more driving, more immediately ‘dancefloor’ percussion while Jon Billick heads in a deeper direction.

But it’s the deep, techy, bassy throb of the less-vocal Addex Remix that’s doing it best for me on this occasion. Niceness!

Out: This week

About: Cosmic Disco is owned and run by the aforesaid Zweistein, a duo out of Eindhoven and Amsterdam. Find ’em here, here and here (Soundcloud, Facebook, web), or check out more from Rissa at her own Soundcloud page.

Rayko – In The Cave

January 17, 2013 in Singles

Rayko In The Cave NangOh go on then, just one more quickly! Seeing as we were just talking strange disco delights, here’s the latest from Nang.

Rare Wiri Records boss Rayko is the man at the controls for what’s an archetypal Nang nu-Italo offering in its original form, with Carpenter-esque synths a-gogo and a soaring, cosmic overall feel. Slovenia’s Ohm Fat then supplies a brace of rerubs that take us into housier territory, his Transcended Dub being my pick of the three mixes.

The Nang faithful should be plenty happy.

Out: This week

About: Here’s where to find Nang online

Destronauts – High Tides

January 9, 2013 in Singles

Destronauts High Tides Honeywax RecordsWe step through the door marked ‘very deep’ now, with the sixth release from Brooklyn-based Honeywax Records.

Just the two tracks on offer. High Tides had me from the outset, opening with rich, resonant Rhodes chords atop crisp, no-nonsense beats and maintaining its almost psychedelic, eyes-wide-shut groove throughout. On the flip you’ll find Lunar Temple, a slightly more unsettling and cinematic ride with echoes of vintage Italo in the choice of synth sounds.

The hype sheet suggest that this is “prime stuff, nominating the project for a place among the more cosmic house music acts”. And you know what? I’m not gonna argue.

Out: This week

About: Honeywax Records – newcomers to this blog, I believe – can be found at their website, on Soundcloud or on Facebook. Destronauts themselves hail originally from Washington DC – here’s their website if you want to know more.