Various – RetrOzone Vol 1

June 5, 2016 in Singles

Various Retrozone Vol 1 Ozone RecordingsWhat we’re gonna do is here is go back… WAY back… as Sheffield’s Ozone Recordings launch a new reissue series called, er, RetrOzone. ]

Think what Brodanse’s Danse Club do for old US garage records, but for 1991/92-style hardcore rave. Featured here are three lesser-known tracks from ’92 courtesy of Nebula II (Flatliners), Bass Generator (Rhubarb & Samples) and Trak 1 (Street Violence), plus Rush Pirates’ Vol 1, a brand-new, sample-tastic affair that nails the sound of those white-gloves-n’-whistles days perfectly.

A bit of a departure from the usual TIWWD fare this one, admittedly. But ’91 hardcore was pretty much where yours truly came in and I suspect there are quite a lot of other, older househeads out there who won’t be able to resist breaking into a big silly grin when they hear these tracks.

Whistle posse – make some fucking noise!

Out: This week

About: You can find Ozone Recordings on Soundcloud and Facebook.

Nixon – The Subculture EP

January 23, 2016 in Singles

Nixon Subculture EP Punks MusicJust one word for this one, and that word is ‘ohmigosh’… cos this BEAST of a tune really is stupidly, ridiculously good.

Coming on the Stanton Warriors’ Punks label, Subculture sees breaks producer Nixon teaming up with D&B MC GQ to concoct a feast of bowel-threatening bass, rolling breaks and exhortations to “make some motherfucking noise”, tempered in parts by floaty, atmospheric synths, gently tinkling ivories and sultry female “mmm-mmm-mmms”. A track that’ll appeal to ageing ravers, junglists and UK garage lovers alike, expect to be hearing this one out RATHER A LOT in the coming months*.

What’s more, flip it over and you also get Step In To The Light, which is even bigger, darker and moodier and even more blatant in its homage to early 90s raving, and which uses the same Yunie I Can See For Miles sample that was made famous on Lick Back Organisation’s 1994 Suburban Base classic Ruff ‘N Rugged.

There ought to be laws against records like this one… but I’m very glad there aren’t.

Out: This week

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

*If you don’t, I may as well pack this “writing about dance music” lark in now, because 20 years of it have clearly taught me nothing

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.

Wise D & Kobe – Time For Rave

July 25, 2015 in Singles

Wise D & Kobe Time For Rave Night BeatSeeing as it’s Saturday night, let’s end on a proper stompin’ dancefloor note with this single-tracker from New York’s Night Beat Records.

The clue’s definitely in the name with this one! Time For Rave starts out sounding like yer fairly typical driving tech-house dancefloor workout, with tribal-tinged drums and a fat, rolling bassline. Old skool diva vocal snips and “heys” then join  the party before, at around the two-minute mark, in come the monster Mentasm-like synths that are the track’s defining characteristic from there on out.

I’d say they don’t make ’em like this any more, but clearly they do… a nostalgic delight!

Out: This week

About: You can find Night Beat Records here, here and, indeed, here.

Atove & Markomas – Cold Minds

July 23, 2015 in Singles

Atove & Markomas Cold Minds RoushMore old skool-leaning sounds on this EP from the Italian duo of Atove & Markomas.

Simila Minds (sic) is up first, which starts with a simple lolloping riddim and a sampled vocal saying “come on and hear our invitation to the dance” (or something like that), then at the two-minute mark adds some very rave-y synth stabs. It’s accompanied by a slightly busier Mirco Violi Remix that adds some more old skool sounds – to wit, looping “dance to the house” vox and high-pitched horn sounds that could’ve come straight outta 1989. Completing the EP is Cold Garage, which isn’t actually garage-y at all, instead starting out as a pretty decent little tech-house chugger then adding a whacking great dose of acid.

Three tracks that are sure to raise a smile from ravers of a certain age in particular…

Out: This week

About: This is brought to you by Hector Couto’s label Roush, who you can find herehere and here.

FactAlone – Comput EP

July 11, 2015 in Singles

FactAlone Comput EP Chapeau MusicAnd speaking of the rave daze (see below), here’s a two-tracker that’s bound to put a smile on the face of all you ageing cheesy quavers out there.

In its Original form, Comput starts with now-sounding techy beats and chunky bass, but gradually introduces first Loleatta vocal snips and then gnarly, Acen-ish stabs/chords so we can all party like it’s 1991! The accompanying Buster (MTF) Remix largely dispenses with the rave elements and instead goes for the 2am jugular with tuff, pounding kicks and plenty of big room drama in its builds and drops.

The remix is okay but – being most definitely an ageing cheesy quaver! – it’s the A all the way here for me.

Out: This week

About: This is brought to you by Italy’s Chapeau Music, who you can find on Soundcloud and Facebook.

Moonwalk – Acid/Clubbin’

May 22, 2015 in Singles

Moonwalk Acid Incorrect MusicTIWWD is off to a festival v. shortly so normal blogging service will be suspended till after the weekend. But just time before heading off to tell you about this belter of a tune from Incorrect Music.

Given the title, you’d be forgiven for expecting an all-out retro acid-fest but that’s not actually the case… Acid, with its big rave synth stabs and “d-d-dance to the house’ vox, is as indebted to the spirit of ’92 as it is to that of ’88. Not to say that there isn’t a big fuck-off 303 bassline in there, of course! The Original and Max Chapman rubs tread fairly similar ground, while the Volkoder mix takes a more contemporary, tech house-y route with a different bassline, but any one of the three will rock most known varieties of house or techno dancefloor.

The similarly nostalically styled Clubbin’ rounds out a must-check package. Or should that be ‘must-jack package’? 🙂

Out: This week

About: Find Chicago-based Incorrect Music on Soundcloud, on Facebook or at their own website.

Leftwing & Kody – One Nation EP

May 13, 2015 in Singles

Leftwing & Kody One Nation EP Lost RecordsSome tuff, no-nonsense house bizniss from Leftwing & Kody here, coming on their own Lost Records label.

One Nation itself gets the ball rolling with uptempo, shuffling beats, a bassline that remembers the acid era fondly and, to match the latter, rave-y stabs and that familiar old “can you feel the beat?” vocal. Don’t Look Back is up next, again quite a driving affair but with more straight-ahead 4/4s this time, not to mention a rather odd vocal that’s vaguely reminiscent of DJ Rush’s Relief classic But It Really Doesn’t Matter With Me Now. S’good but I’m liking Luca Cazal’s full-throttle acid refix more, I think, while completing the EP is That’s The Way, a just slightly less frantic houser that again has strong rave-y leanings, what with the female rap vox, sirens and very 92-ish piano stabs.

L&K kickin’ it old skool! Nice.

Out: This week

About: You can find Lost Records on Soundcloud and Facebook.

Awaspect – Wake Up

May 5, 2015 in Singles

Awaspect Wake Up Sounds Of JuanThree very different mixes to choose from on what’s a particularly fine offering from Sounds Of Juan here.

In its Original form, Wake Up is quite a slow, druggy/chuggy tech-houser with a heavily distorted male voice speaking over cavernous kicks, throbbing bass and a simple, nagging synth riff that’s got definite rave-y overtones. The Danny Mills Remix ups the pace somewhat and is a bit more ‘textbook techno’, if you see what I mean – not in a bad way though, by any means.

But it’s the Phutek Remix that’s grabbing me the most, even if it is a bit outside the usual TIWWD ballpark. Fusing elements of 1992-style rave (echoes of Acen, for one) and mid-90s nu-NRG, I only played it once and I had to rush out in the street and hug strangers, saying “what’s your name mate where ya from what ya on?” and offering them my water*. Ah, memories…

Out: This week

About: Find Sounds Of Juan on Facebook or at the Krafted Music website.

* I didn’t ACTUALLY do that, obviously. I’d make right show of myself. But you get the idea.

Kaily & Blandy – Back To 92

December 17, 2014 in Singles

Kaily & Blandy Back To 92 Lapsus MusicThe clue’s in the name with this EP from Irish producer Kaily, with and without English buddy Blandy in tow, coming on Italy’s Lapsus Music.

The title track is the most immediate attention-grabber, opening with three minutes of 909 drums, full-phat bass and rave synths before in come those proper old skool pianos… if you don’t raise your arms to this one, you probably haven’t got any arms. But the rest of EP’s just as good. Get Ready (The Passion) is credited to Kaily on his own and makes great use of a Gat Decor bass sample, while How Long and Take A Trip (the latter another Kaily solo offering) tread a more current-sounding bassy, techy house path, and tread it well. As for Up In Smoke, which comes in Original, Kobhi Tech Remix and A Lister Remix forms… I’m sure I should know that “me just gwan’ blaze it up” reggae vocal from somewhere but I couldn’t tell you where from right now.

What I can tell you, though, is that this is an excellent EP that ravers of a certain age, in particular, will enjoy greatly, with Back To 92 itself and the Lister mix of Up In Smoke the standouts for yours truly.

Out: Last week but still playing catch-up… only one more to go though!

About: Lapsus Music is owned and operated by Italian duo Supernova, and can be found here and here.

PS: Incidentally the commercial release seems to have far fewer tracks/mixes, but an extra mix of Back To 92 by Cera Alba, so go figure. I can only review what people send me…