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Falty DL – Make It Difficult review

Irish imprint All City, based out of a record shop located in Dublin’s Temple Bar, has blossomed in recent times thanks to the excellent Los Angeles split 10″ series and an artist roster that includes Onra, Mike Slott, Tessela, Martyn, and, now, New York beatsmith FaltyDL. Ostensibly these represent Falty’s two housiest cuts to date – hardly surprising considering the source material – yet they are rooted in a collage sampling style that betrays the producer’s reverence for vintage hip-hop.

A-Side missive “Make It Difficult” essentially serves as a reinvention of a late 90s house gem by Shena. The vocals and chords from that ‘97 version are appropriated and given the full Falty treatment – hi-hats that relentlessly slap you around the face from every which way, an excellent bassline that was lacking from the original and deliciously swung drums. There’s also the male vocal intoning the track’s title, which contrasts nicely with Shena’s dulcet tones. It sits somewhere in between Bakey USTL’s “A Tender Place” and Blawan’s “Getting Me Down”, with skilfully arranged samples doused in a producer’s idiosyncratic style – the result being a track that sounds warm and familiar yet very much of the now.

Flip over for “Jack Your Job”, with more frenetic drum programming and call and response vocal snippets making for a next level mutant house jam (this time Romanthony is the most obvious sample source to these ears). The main vocal imploring us to get “control over your job” is backed by a wailing female backing and a seemingly endless procession of deft sonic touches – handclaps, more idiosyncratic hi-hats, flute – all layered on top of each other in a manner that brings to mind classic hip-hop layered sampling (think Paul’s Boutique and 3 Feet High and Rising) being adopted to a house template with breezy aplomb.

Aaron Coultate