GrooveANDyes – Suicidal Trend

April 18, 2016 in Singles

GrooveANDyes Suicidal Trend Bassics RecordsArgentinian label Bassics Records make their TIWWD debut tonight, with a release that’s likely to find friends in both the house and techno camps.

For the househeads, it’s the Original mix of Suicidal Trend you’ll want to head for, with its stripped-back but nonetheless hip-swayin’ beats, party/crowd noise and obscenely squelchy slap bassline. For the techno lovers, Felix Rusconi’s remix takes the track to a darker, trippier place, while finally Cruster’s rub sits somewhere between the two and as such is likely to find favour with both camps.

All good stuff, but no prizes for guessing it’s the Original yours truly is feeling the most.

Out: Friday (22 April)

About: Bassics Records are based in Buenos Aires. This is the label’s 19th release, and you can find ’em on Soundcloud, on Facebook or at their own website.

FreedomB – Devil House EP

March 12, 2016 in Singles

FreedomB Devil House EP Criminal HypeSome nice chunky, bassy house bizniss on this two-track, four-mix EP from Criminal Hype.

In its Original form,  Devil House itself is, er, a chunky, bassy houser with cut-up fem vox, fragments of speech/movie dialogue and moody atmospherics. David Jach’s remix opts for more straight-up driving beats; it largely loses the atmospherics, which means it doesn’t quite have the same ‘weirding out at 4am’ effect but on the plus side, this allows its own vintage Chi-town style bassline to ring through more clearly.

The other original cut, The Lit, marries tuff-ish, techy beats with a jaunty, hip-swayin’ b-line, spoken male vox and, as the track progresses, some head-frying synth stabs, while the Italoboyz Templehof Remix is essentially a dubbier pass with added helicopter/aeroplane sounds.

If pushed then Jach’s remix of the title cut takes the gold but this is a very strong EP all round.

Out: This week

About: Find Criminal Hype on Soundcloud and Facebook.

Felix – Reaching For The Top

October 25, 2015 in Singles

Felix Reaching For The Top Dance FXYes, this is indeed that Felix… of early 90s Don’t You Want My Love fame. He’s been pretty quiet these past 20 years, but he’s back with a bang here.

With a “house ain’t giving up, house ain’t gonna stop/we keep reaching for, reaching for the top” vocal and big, balls-y bassline, Reaching… is really built to appeal to young crowds raised on ‘EDM’ – Felix is based in LA these days after all – but don’t let that put you off. Because for one thing there are plenty of nods to old school hardcore/rave along the way – Belgian-sounding synth stabs, cascading pianos, etc – that’ll make those of ‘a certain age’ smile too, and for another, it’s a charity offering, with all proceeds going to the David Lynch Foundation, who work with prisoners, war veterans and inner-city kids.

Energy-packed, slightly cheesy and tons of fun…  just like those Felix records of old, in fact!

Out: This week

About: This comes on Felix’s own Dance FX label, through Crazy Bones Music.

Some albums, quickly…

August 24, 2015 in Albums

Okay, slowly getting back up to speed after the two-week break! Tomorrow it’ll be back to business as usual, reviewing this week’s releases, but first there are a few albums from the past couple of weeks I need to tell you about…

Julius Papp Healing Force NeoDisco MusicJulius Papp – Healing Force
The US deep, soulful house veteran returns with his first long-player since 2012’s Music Is The Key, coming once more on his own NeoDisco Music imprint, and it’s fair to say it’s a bit special. Kicking off with the laidback Spanish guitar vibes of A Flower Blossoms, the album goes on to take in cinematic downtempo-isms (A Theme For Sereen), classic-style Balearica (Kosmosis), soulful house (Dontcha Wanna Dance, A Thousand Years), throbbing main room house (Primitive Future) and more besides. Healing Force? They could just as well have called it Tour De Force
More info

Magnetic Cuts Vol 2Various – Magnetic Cuts Vol 2
The second installment in this six-part best-of series from DJ Sneak’s Magnetic Recordings. Compared to Volume 1, the overall mood here is a little more peaktime and driving, though as ever with the Sneaky one the funk is in full effect throughout, with highlights for this reviewer including DJ W!ld’s Shiva with its echoes of Aly-Us’s classic Follow Me, Sneak’s own swing-tinged I Rep Underground and J Paul Ghetto’s jazzy Imma Let You Know.
More info

Singers & Players War Of Words On-U Sound

Singers & Players – War Of Words
A must-check for the reggae and dub lovers here, as this highly sought-after LP from 1981 gets a long-overdue re-release courtesy of On-U Sound. Singers & Players were a short-lived supergroup that included Bim Sherman, Prince Far I, Jah Woosh, Keith Levene of PiL, Ari Up of The Slits and members of Roots Radics and The Arabs… with Adrian Sherwood on production duties. And yes, the results of this stellar studio collision are every bit as good as you’d expect!
More info

Beach Disco Sessions Vol 6 NangVarious – Beach Disco Sessions Vol 6
Nang serve up a compilation here that may surprise a few listeners. Because while it’s true there’s a certain style of spangly nu-disco that Nang have made their own, Beach Disco Sessions 6 serves as a timely reminder that they can do a lot more. Across its 13 tracks you certainly will find synth-y Italo-esque joints – see, for instance, Ilya Santana’s HypnoDisco. But you’ll also find funk-fuelled breakbeats (Bronx Dogs’ 212), Kraak & Smaak/Fat Freddy’s-ish neo-soul (Material’s Come Down) and soulful house (Situation’s Here Comes The Sun)… not to mention Fuzz Against Junk’s County Clonk, as remixed by Lindstrøm into what sounds suspiciously like an homage to Faze Action’s In The Trees!
More info

Real Ibiza 8 React

Various – Real Ibiza 8
React’s Real Ibiza series returns after an eight-year hiatus, with a 16-track collection of smooth downtempo sounds. The Korvids kick things off with the Groove Armada-ish Ursula My Dear; after that, scene stalwarts like Chris Coco, Jose Padilla and The Kenneth Bager Experience rub shoulders with a host of newcomers on a comp that ranges freely between Balearica, slo-mo disco and all-out ambience. Sonic Radox for club-weary souls (and soles).
More info

Guardate feat Stan Sax – Downwind

March 18, 2014 in Singles

Guardate Downwind Love HarderHow many records have you bought/played/danced to over the years that were essentially reworkings of French Kiss? Loads, I’m guessing.

The point is, we don’t have a problem with that in dance music, endless recycling, reinvention and reinterpretation of ideas being one of the factors that’s helped keep house, garage, techno and their legion sub-genres and spin-offs the freshest, most exciting music around for over a half century. Well Downwind, you’ll be pleased to hear, isn’t another reworking of French Kiss. It does sound ONE HELL OF A LOT like The Man With The Red Face though! But I’m not struggling with that, and if you’re not either then this is well worth acquiring.

Just the one mix, but it’s all you’ll need.

Out: This week

About: This comes to you courtesy of Munich label Love Harder, who can be found on Soundcloud, on Facebook or at their own website.

Inner City – Big Fun 2013 Remixes

December 7, 2013 in Singles

Inner City Big Fun 2013 KMS RecordsNow here’s another one that shouldn’t take too much explaining!

No fewer than seven new mixes of this first-generation rave classic on offer here. The Full Intention 88 and DJ PP & Jerome Robins mixes are the ones that stick most closely to the original blueprint, House Of Virus take us into techno pastures, while Full Intention and Matt Smallwood take care of the big-room house floors. But the two standouts for me are Con-Natural’s drum & bass rework and the deeper, garage-inflected refix from Dantiez Saunderson & Stereo Phunk.

Altogether now: “We don’t really need a crowd to have a party…”

Out: This week

About: This comes on Kevin Saunderson’s own KMS Records – find ’em on Facebook or here.

Alex Agore – Reach For Me EP

May 27, 2013 in Singles

Alex Agore Reach For Me EP Dabit RecordsHere we have just the second release from Italy’s Dabit Records, who apparently are “aiming to offer up new experiences in house and techno”. Somewhat ironic words, given the decidedly old-skool flavas on offer here…

The title track is a midpaced little shuffler with lovely raw-sounding piano chords and snatches of the classic Funky Green Dogs vocal, while Tall & Handsome similarly bites Outrage’s vintage piano screamer for its vocal component, albeit in a pleasingly non-obvious way, placing said vocal atop a backing that’s part NYC, part Chicago, part Ibiza and ALL retro. Rounding out the EP, He Will Always Be There is archetypal Jersey garage with a gospel vocal.

So I’m not sure about the ‘new experiences’ bit, at least not for those of us who were there first time around! But if it’s classic-style house n’ garage grooves you’re after, you’ll be hard pushed to do much better than this right now.

Out: This week.

About: You can find Dabit on Soundcloud, on Facebook or at their own website.

Jon Brooks & Cecil – Here To Say EP

March 14, 2013 in Singles

Jon Brooks & Cecil Here To Stay EP Artful DivisionWow, is what I wanna say about this one. I’ve got lots of records like this… and most of them are 20 years old, and it used to be that if you wanted ’em you had to a) act sharpish and b) live on baked spuds all week, cos Eastern Bloc would only get three copies in and they’d be £8.99 on import, back in the days when a pint was still only £1.40 and dole was £32.

Which is a roundabout way of saying that, of all the vintage-inspired releases from young producers that I’ve been getting sent lately, this is as authentic-sounding an emulation of that good raw US shit from the early 90s as I’ve heard. The EP features two rubs of Got To Get Looser – organs and fem vocal cut-ups par excellence – and two of Wanna Feel, a more driving affair that pays homage to F.I.T.Z’s Italo-house classic Feel The Music.

Yeah, you could get all sniffy and start using phrases like “mere pastiche” and stuff… if you were an arse. Suffice to say, this is a record that will make old house n’ garage ravers very happy… and that’ll give the young ‘uns just a hint of what it was all about.

Out: This week

About: This comes on Leicester’s Artful Division who can be found on Soundcloud, on Facebook or at their own website. Judging by the pictures on the latter, no-one involved in this record must have been more than about seven or eight when this kinda stuff was first popular, which makes the quality of this release all the more remarkable.

Leftwing & Kody – You Were EP

March 8, 2013 in Singles

Leftwing & Kody You Were EP OFF RecordingsThe latest here from OFF Recordings, and something of a gem it is too.

There are two tracks in three mixes: You Were itself, plus two rubs of Burning Up. But we can review ’em as one, because both/all three do essentially the same thing, borrowing familiar tropes from classic 90s US house and garage – raw snatches of female vocal, beefy, hip-swaying bass, ‘come on!’ shouts, parping organs – and tweaking them to sound bang up-to-date for the 2013 dancefloors.

Not got much more to say really but this is pretty much unmissable. Get on down to the waistline…

Out: This week

About: You can find OFF Recordings, who are based in Berlin and headed up by Andre Crom, on Soundcloud, on Facebook or at their own website.

Various – King Street Miami 2013 Sampler EP

March 2, 2013 in Singles

KSS1393_smallHaving some computer issues (again!) so gonna have to be quick tonight… I think there’s just time to tell you about this one though, which is of course King Street’s annual Miami sampler.

As is the label’s wont these days, it actually comes in two separate editions – one for Traxsource, one for Beatport. On the Traxsource edition, you’ll find cuts from Yass, Joeski, Pablo Fierro, Mr Terrible, Will Crawshaw & Luke Pompey, Alex Font and Mind Street. The emphasis here is on uplifting, mostly vocal cuts, with Mind Street’s Do The Right Thing a definite highlight for the trad-heads while Crawshaw & Pompey’s bass-rumblin’ Jack City is another standout. On the Beatport edition, meanwhile, Fabian Argomedo, Doomwork, Angelo Ferreri, T.Tommy & Vincent Belenguer, DJ Shu-Ma & Oliver Schmitz, Sebastian Roter & Dan Lewis and Sydney & Lukez tread a tuffer, techier path, with standouts here including Roter & Lewis’s Get Dumb and Argomedo’s discofied roller The Truth.

Having to race through this a bit cos my Mac’s about to die but with 14 tracks to choose from, if you pick up both you’re sure to find something to rock your boat and float your world…

Out: This week

About: Find King Street here