This week at Juno


Records from Pangaea, Al Dobson Jr, Theo Parrish, Villa Abo and a rare appearance from Scott Ferguson and Jitterbug’s collaborative endeavour are amongst our picks this week.

Villa Abo – Love Surrender (Börft Sweden)

Not matter how many releases Frak or Börft throw our way there’s none we can say you should really sleep on. The latest sees Frak mainman Jan Svensson producing under the Villa Åbo’s alias for a second time this year, after Paul Du Lac coaxed the Swede into revisiting a project that had lied dormant since the late ’90s for a Bio Rhythm double pack. Whereas A Ruff Swing Below was largely DJ tool heavy, this new Love Surrender 12″ is much more in line with the wacky Swedish electro we associate with Börft, with all six cosmic tracks darting around space with elegance of a lost UFO while snapping snare sting like an electric proton beam. The collective results are amongst some of the most compelling Börft has released recent times.
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Walt J – Resurgence (Unlearn)

After luring New Yorker Chris Mitchell away from his Plan B, Anunnaki Cartel and Vanguard Sound! burrows for their inaugural release, the focus of fledging French house label Unlearn remains across the Atlantic for their second, calling upon deep house royalty in Walt J. The mid ’90s work of Walter Jones has been the subject of some welcome reappraisals from Aaron Siegel’s FIT Sounds label and Curle Recordings – the latter featuring a sublime DJ Qu remix – yet Resurgence is the enigmatic Detroit producer’s first original since 1997. That’s 17 years and surprise surprise it doesn’t disappoint in the slightest!
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Theo Parrish – Footwork (Sound Signature)

Whilst you’d be a fool to call Theo Parrish a slacker when it comes to putting out records, there was still a sense of palpable expectation when it was revealed earlier this year that his fifth album, and first since 2007, was on the way. This revelation came in the form of a teaser video for “Footwork” and that track now takes centre stage on this new Sound Signature slab. Named in reference to the dance as opposed to the breakneck offshoot of Ghetto House, “Footwork” is something to get excited about and it sounds as fresh, raw and ready as his Overyohead 12″ from ’99, and comes with added gruff “let me see you foot work baybee” vocals. The Juno Plus editorial like it when Theo gets rough and rugged with the buttons on his MPC and that’s certainly the case with B-Side jam “Tympanic Warfare” which is our pick of the two.
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Mike Weis – Don’t Know Just Walk (Type)

When we gave Don’t Know Just Walk a run on our office stereo this week, the record was met with one response by a colleague who yelled out ‘sounds like the apocalypse’. Indeed, the ruffle of field recordings mixed with busy and low-lying tribal drums and cold, shimmering ride symbols that makes up this Type debut from Mike Weis doesn’t really compliment the streak of blue skies and sun showering down on London this week. But when it’s hot and sunny here it’s cold and raining somewhere else so that’s by the by, and Zelienople percussionist Wies certainly does what he can over the course of these three extended tracks to make us feel cold, melancholic and ultimately content to be blue.
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Pangaea – Pob (Hadal)

This year has treated Pangaea well so far, with a superb edition for the long running Fabriclive mix series complemented by an invitation to open proceedings on the Livity Sound remixes alongside MMM, and news of a new Hadal release arriving in typically unassuming fashion on Twitter last month most welcome. Pob represents yet another fascinating insight into McAuley’s continual sonic development and progression, with few other contemporaries likely to conjure up the offbeat, drunken swagger that permeates the wonderfully named “Mackerel” or indeed the contrast between delicate notes and gruff ragga chants and Ben Klock “Gold Rush” beats that make up “Ivy”.
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Al Dobson Jr – Rye Lane Vol 1 (Rhythm Section International)

This record was also played in the Juno Plus office this week and unlike the aforementioned Don’t Know Just Walk from Mike Weis no shouts of the apocalypse were heard, instead we had ‘rewind to the break’ and the nod of approval from the in-house funk-o-phile and several repeat plays as the week rolled on. Rye Lane Vol 1 finds Al Dobson Jr inaugurating Rhythm Section International, a label borne out of the Peckham clubnight hosted by Boiler Room’s Bradley Zero, and it’s nice to see the community-based principles that have helped the night suceed transfer to the label. File Rye Lane Vol 1 gets better with every listen and should be filed alongside the excellent Mo Kolours album in records that take on an added dimension in the sun.
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JBSF – JBSF2 (Ferrispark)

With the mountains of deep house records that pile up at each week at Juno we know a good house jam when we hear one. And for the true deep stuff, nothing came close to touching this second collaboration between Jitterbug and Scott Ferguson, safely released on Ferguson’s always reliable Ferrispark. New material from JBSF doesn’t come around too often, nor indeed do Jitterbug records but it seems we are being treated by the Jittery one as JBSF2 arrives ahead of a fourth Uzuri release from Jitterbug (some of which that man Hodge slipped into his fine mix for our podcast series last week). Back to JBSF2 which features three tracks that hit that sweet spot between ambient and deep house while the shuffling and dubby B1 makes you think perhaps Levon Vincent was anonymously involved in making it. By far one of the best deep house records to hit Juno’s shelves this year.
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Mumdance – Take Time (Rinse)

If you’ve been reading about Mumdance online recently, you’ve probably seen the rather disconcerting press shot that’s been approved ahead of this release for the Rinse label that looks like a character from a East London-based Hellraiser reboot. As you can see, that photo has been thankfully adapted somewhat for the final artwork that adorns Mumdance’s 12″ debut for Rinse. Many ears are still ringing from his collaborations with Pinch and Logos on Tectonic and Keysound, and those seem to have spurred him onto greater things on the basis of the four tracks here. There’s enough space between each beat to park a soundsystem between here, that’s if you can dodge the gun shots, zapping lasers and venomous rhymes spat by Novelist. While Spyro also spits over a whole range of warped sound design and post-Classical Curves grime that lays down a nice marker for the stunning new mix Mumdance has done with Pinch.
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El Mahdy Jr – Gasba Grime (Danse Noire)

The second Jr to grace Juno HQ this week following Al Dobson is El Mahdy, a musical traveller, hopping from genre to genre but always retaining his singular touch on bass music. Gasba Grime provides his and the Danse Noire label’s third release following Vaghe Stelle’s inauguration last year. He lands on Danse Noir with a five-track EP and while each production has something different to offer, there is a distinct Middle Eastern vibe penetrating through it’s many jagged and broken beats. Imagine Burial and Muslimgauze combined, and you’re still pretty far off. There’s also a blinding remix from Young Echo crew Killing Sound that is far more menacing than we can put into words.
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Relay – Untitled (Our Circular Sound)

One of the easier Shifted aliases to keep up with Relay. Truth be told he’s only done the one untitled 12″ which followed Adam Rivet’s impressive debut on the Frozen Border sub-label Naked Index. Coaxed into revisiting the project by close ally Sigha, Relay’s return takes the form of three more untitled tracks (1, 2 and 3) and no surprises here, their purpose built for a peak time slot. It’s grubbier and grizzlier than his booming dub techno as Pacific Blue, while the crackle, drone and alien atmospheres veer closer in sound to his work as Alexander Lewis – but overall it still has that scratchy, stone-hard club music vibe we all loved the first time.
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