Saison – Come With Us EP

June 25, 2016 in Singles

Saison Come With Us EP Large MusicAn excellent three-track EP here from Chicago veterans Large Music. And while the name Saison will be new to most, the guys themselves are no newbies either… it’s a team-up between Leigh Darlow of The Layabouts, and Matthew Bandy of Deep House Souldiers*.

So, on to the music. Come With Us, which gets the ball rolling, is a languid deep house groover with jazzy piano chords, snatches of spoken female vocal that recall Akabu’s Ride The Storm and a main nagging Rhodes riff. Help Me is in a similar vein but with a more garage-y feel, while Walking The Night flips the script and takes us to the proggier, dreamier end of deep house, albeit still with a soulful vocal element.

Quality stuff all round, but it’s probably no surprise that Help Me is my fave.

Out: Tomorrow (26 June)

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

* From whose 2003 single This Is Why We Dance this blog takes its name. With Matt’s permission, of course, so cheers again for that Mr B!

Rory Cochrane ft Sanna Hatfield – Focus Pt 1

May 9, 2016 in Singles

Rory Cochrane ft Sanna Hatfield Focus Limitation MusicSome seriously deep house grooves to play us out tonight courtesy of Romania’s excellent Limitation Music.

The original of Focus appeared on the label’s Selection Box 2 compilation; what we have here is the first of two remix EPs. In Dee Mac’s hands, Focus is a delicate n’ dreamy cut with a sweet, soulful “My nerves are starting to get to me… but I’ll try to focus” female vocal from Ms Hatfield* and some luvverly piano chords, while Forteba brings us a dubbier pass with slightly tuffer drums. The Addex Remix treads similar ground to Dee Mac, but with less emphasis on the vocal and more on the warm, resonant bass and lingering pads, while finally the Addex Space Out mix sees the Romanian producer taking us into flotation tank territory.

Addex definitely takes the gold here – I just keep changing my mind which mix he takes it with!

Out: This week

About: You can find Bucharest-based Limitation Music herehere and here.

*Quite a Lisa Shaw-ish vocal, actually, which is high praise from this reviewer

Dipper & Sy P – Make It Last

March 19, 2016 in Singles

Dipper & Sy P Make It Last SP RecordingsDeeper house vibes now courtesy of Essex’s SP Recordings.

There’s just the one track/mix, so I needn’t keep you long! Make It Last harks back to classic Chi-town deep house of yore, and comes infused with a hefty dose of soul in the form of garage-y Rhodes chords, gently tinkling keys and a guest vocal from the mighty Robert Owens that shares centre-stage with a second, whispered male vocal.

Not much more to tell you really… jus’ quality late-night deep house vibes, seen?

Out: This week (on general release)

About: Find SP Recordings herehere and here.

Keepin’ Soul – Deep Basics EP

February 9, 2016 in Singles

Keepin' Soul Deep Basics EP Pocket Money RecordsNext tonight we have some good old-fashioned deep ‘n’ soulful house grooves, coming from the aptly named Keepin’ Soul in the form of the equally aptly named Deep Basics EP.

Deep Basics itself gets the ball rolling, an unhurried lil’ groover with lingering pads, tinkling ivories and spacey synths. There’s some nice understated Hammond-like organ action in the mid-section, too. I Can’t Stop is a little more driving in the beats department but just as laidback in terms of the overall feel, with barely-there snatches of soulful male vocal, while Sun’s Gonna Rise is a more bumpin’, floor-friendly cut with a nice phat bottom-end and jazzy sax parps. Completing the EP is Love Is, which ploughs a more overtly old-skool US garage/soulful house furrow with its organ stabs and chorus’d fem vox.

The latter two stand out for yours truly but the EP as a whole should satisfy anyone  in search of more ‘traditional’ deep house goodness.

Out: Now

About: This comes on Pocket Money Records, a new (this is PMR003) vinyl label based in Manchester who make their TIWWD debut tonight, and who you can find on Soundcloud, on Facebook or at their own website.

Eugene Glasgow – Someday EP

December 27, 2015 in Singles

Eugene Glasgow Someday EP MustHaveSoulFinally for tonight, we have some raw, 90s-style vocal house bizniss coming courtesy of Dubai’s MustHaveSoul – this being the label’s very first release.

On the A, Someday itself starts out with a full minute-and-a-half of intro consisisting of just drums and a piercing synth note, before eventually adding first parping garage-y keys and then looping diva vox, the end result being a cut that wouldn’t have disgraced the mighty Serious Grooves label back in the glory days. It’s accompanied by I’ll Do Anything, which tops a no-nonsense lolloping rhythm with deep-voiced, half-spoken-half-sung male vox, looped “come on!” shouts and some very fine jazz organ work.

File under “real deal shiznit that’ll delight househeads of a certain age”.

Out: This week

About: You can find MustHaveSoul – which is the new record label arm of a long-running club brand – on Soundcloud, on Facebook or at their own website.

Angelo Draetta & Luigi Egitto – Sun Goes

December 27, 2015 in Singles

Angelo Draetta & Luigi Egitto Sun Goes SP RecordingsMore sweet fem vox (see Andi Rivera, below) on this single-tracker from Essex label SP Recordings.

Sitting somewhere between deep, soulful and ‘beach’ house, Sun Goes is predicated around langorous synth sweeps, soaring sax, gently tinkling chimes and, of course, that gorgeous (but uncredited) sultry, wistful vocal. It all adds up to something with a vaguely ‘sunset in Ibiza in the 90s’ feel… but that’s by no means a bad thing.

Not much more to tell you, really.

Out: This week (on general release)

About: Find SP Recordings herehere and here.

Basement Boys – House Legends

December 14, 2015 in Albums

Basement Boys House Legends Groove OdysseyThree quite different compilations to tell you about tonight as we once more play the ‘Monday night albums catch-up’ game, kicking off with this offering from Groove Odyssey. House Legends is their new series paying homage to the giants of the soulful house scene – their answer to Defected’s House Masters, if you will – and so who better to kick the series off than those Baltimore legends Basement Boys?

Here, then, you’ll find 20 of the finest moments in the long (30 years next year!) and illustrious career of both Basement Boys (the production team) and Basement Boys (the label). Kenny Bobien’s You Gave Me Love, Shaun Escoffery’s Days Like These (presented here in Deepah Dub form), Marc Evans’ The Way You Love Me… if you were out and about on the soulful house scene in the 90s and 00s you’ll definitely know most of the tracks here. If you weren’t, of course – which I suspect is really the point – then this is the perfect introduction to a stunning back catalogue. We’re surely about due a soulful house revival any minute now…

Meantime for us older types, there are enough lesser-known gems and unreleased mixes to make this worth investigating even if, like this reviewer, you still own much of what’s here on vinyl. Sheila Ford’s sumptuous Why Can’t You See (remixed by Louie Vega) and the raw garage of Margarate Grace’s God Created Woman would be cases in point, as would the Teddy Douglas Re-Rub of Rochelle Fleming’s I’m Gonna Give It To You; s’good to hear the likes of Teddy Douglas’ The Violin again, too.

All told, a great package from some of dance music’s true originators. Respect is due!

Out: Now

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

Tim Richards – Soul Music EP

December 4, 2015 in Singles

Tim Richards Soul Music EP Something DifferentMore soulfully inclined house vibes on this latest offering from Liverpool’s Something Different.

In its Orginal form, Soul Music has some dude talking extensively about, well, soul music, atop understated but still floor-friendly rolling beats and some sterling, equally subtle organ chords. The Alternative Mix takes us to a bouncier place and adds disco stabs n’ claps, applying the vocal a little more sparingly and letting the keys do more of the talking. Both are great… but then you see along comes a Terrence Parker remix and when, I ask you, did a Terrence Parker remix ever NOT absolutely kick it out of the park? Pretty much never, is the answer, and his bumpin’ bass-and-organs led rub is well up to his usual standard, nuff said!

Oh!, a chuggier groove with soulful male vocal contributions from Maximum Hush completes what is a strong package all round, but it’s the TP bomb that you need to pick this one up for.

Out: This week (on general release)

About: Find Something Different on Soundcloud and Facebook.

Mark Di Meo feat Sofia R – Into The Night

December 3, 2015 in Singles

Mark Di Meo ft Sofia Rubina Into The Night King Street SoundsSome fine soulful house grooves on this lil’ gem from Italian producer Mark Di Meo, brought to you by the mighty King Street Sounds.

In its Original form, Into The Night is reminiscent of Naked/Om-style deep, soulful house of the early 00s, with Sofia Rubina supplying a full vocal as well as some superb jazzy scat action. The accompanying Instrumental Mix shouldn’t need explaining, while the Rightside Remix is a perfectly acceptable variation on the them. It’s the Groove Delivers Dub that’s floating this reviewer’s boat more, though, which again is quite west coast-y but this time looking more to the more bumpin’ and funk-fuelled sound of labels like Transport and Salted for inspiration… while keeping the scat vox intact.

File under ‘classy house music for grown-ups’.

Out: This week

About: Find King Street Sounds herehere and here.

DJ Shaheer Williams ft Michael Watford – Faith

November 29, 2015 in Singles

Shaheer Williams ft Michael Watford Faith Universe MediaA complete change of pace now as London’s Universe Media bring us a fine slice of gospel-flavoured garage/soulful house from former Ruffneck man Shaheer Williams.

Three mixes of Faith to choose from. On the Soul Groove Mix, Watford’s legendary tonsils are in action atop an insistent piano riff, hip-swayin’ beats and, later on, some ker-razy parping Hammond action. David Anthony ups the tempo a little on his Gospel Mix, which has BVs from Lisa Millett, no less, and which is vaguely reminiscent of Praise Cats’ classic Shined On Me. And then finally another scene stalwart, Ricky Morrison, gives us a Klub Dub Vox mix which adopts a slightly more contemporary, tech-tinged tone while keeping Watford’s vocal intact.

If you’re fiending for uplifting, trad-style soulful vibes that are guaranteed devoid of both wish and wash, you’ll find ’em right here.

Out: This week

About: You can find Universe Media on Soundcloud or at their own website.