Vakula, perhaps Juno's favourite Ukrainian export since Mila Kunis, returns to 3rd Strike Records and together they deliver perhaps their finest work to date. Everyone seems to have pulled out all the stops on Saturday with 3rd Strike enlisting the Nthcreative design agency to produce some striking sleeve art and Vakula excelling musically. Whilst his work to date for Firecracker, Ethereal Sound and Quintessentials has been filled with pedigree, there's a sheen of specialness that cloaks the four productions here which grabs you as soon as the introspective strings that punctuate the sumptuous deep bump of "Touch" grace your senses. Complementing this is the slinky freeform beatdown bliss of "Gospel Keyboards" which is naturally big on the melodic flourishes. On the flip "Crossing" eeks out a glacial throb, all rusted jacking rhythms and frosted basslines, before taking a swift left turn into a delightful pattern of ivory swirls. The final arrival of fuzzed out acid melodies demonstrate how versatile a producer Vakula is. Proceedings end on the title track, another excursion into ethereal beatdown filled with jazzed melodic touches which kind of sounds like Anton Zap remixing the Cheers theme tune (definitely a good thing).
Owen Jay, HiRO, DAX DJ, Local Zero, Dubbyman (Deep Explorer Music), Spacewalker (Balance), Mr. Fiel, Buzz Compass, FOLD, Deetron, Mehdi, AntonZap, Martin Haberland, ISOUL8 (Volcov), Jay Simon (Must Have Records), Lucky Sun, Deep Space Orchestra, Frank Booker, Lwazi Koom, Vakula, DISCREET UNIT, Chamboche, Tan Atalar, Seahorse & Castle, Sai Aka Blend Architect, Joe Bonez (Burek), Fantastic Man, SPDSC
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