Guarapachanga (A Nicholson Miquifaye remix) (9:14)
Guarapachanga (A Nicholson Miquifaye reprise) (5:56)
Review: The New York-based (U)nity is made up of Michael Valeanu, Axel Tosca Laugart, Chris Smith, Max Cudworth and Amaury Acosta. They formed the band in 2006 as a project to explore Afro-Cuban jazz, funk, soul and contemporary electronica. They say they've been influenced by everyone from Chucho Valdes to Art Blakey to Led Zeppelin to Kendrick Lamar, and you can definitely hear all of that in this jawdropping work. "Guarapachanga" is special in that it was the first song written by the band back in their days as music students at The New School. It's derived from the style known as guarapachangeo - the most advanced form of Cuban rumba, heavily improvisational and based on very complex rhythms and melodies. On this recording, (U)nity is graced with a guest performance by Grammy Award winner Pedrito Martinez, a master rumbero, one of the greatest conga players ever, an innovator who has left a permanent mark on Cuban music. Martinez is also a priest in the Yoruba religion and a historian of Cuban culture.
Over its eight and a half minutes, "Guarapachanga" twists and turns and journeys through a mind bending array of different tempos and modes, from Latin jazz to hip hop, ultimately ending with a trippy ambient soundscape. The whole thing is overlaid with free spirited melody, soul and the Afro-Cuban essence that is the band's lifeblood. The white-hot live playing gives it the feel of the best early-morning jam session, yet it packs a sonic punch that will make it sound incredible on a good sound system in the hands of adventurous DJs in the world-beat or spiritual-house vein. If you didn't know "Guarapachanga" was a contemporary work you might mistake it for a Loft classic; yet it's also as fresh and exciting as anything you'll hear this year.
Review: After spending last autumn working alongside Rampa and Adam Port (see the trio's excellent "You Are Safe" album on Keinemusik), Andre "&Me" Boadu has enjoyed a quiet 2018. In fact, this outing on Pampa is his first release of 2018. He begins with the atmospheric and undulating delight that is "In Your Eyes", a slightly jazz-flecked rolling deep house excursion that brilliantly builds energy throughout. Boadu accomplishes this using two contrasting melodic elements: fluid piano solos and a foreboding electronic motif that increases in prominence and intensity as the track progresses. Over on side B, "As Above So Below" is an altogether deeper proposition, with hushed, cymbal heavy percussion, tech-tinged drums and a spacey, undulating synthesizer melody combining to create a hazy late night mood.
Review: 2DeepSoul are the core crew behind Inner Shift music, so as you might expect they've got a keen instinct for the finest strains of pure deep house as you'd happily dig from the likes of Patrice Scott or Fred P. They open up the Windows EP with the dreamy haze of "Clarity" before "Contour Lines" brings a pulsing, techy lead into the mixture of sweeping pads and snappy beats. "Someday" is a rich, harmonious ambient excursion, and then "It's A Sign" finishes the EP off with a truly meditative trip for the smoothest deep house cruisers to lock onto.
Review: Under the 2XM alias, super siblings the Murray Brothers have thus far proved to be rather good at fusing heady, smoky deep house with the dreamy chords of ambient house and a variety of interconnected influences. They're in fine form on this EP, too, effortlessly moving between two-step/dream house fusion ("Dancing Styles", which surprisingly reminded us of late '90s Irresistible Force Records), eyes-closed jazzy deep house bliss (the fluid electric piano solos, rich chords and dusty beats of "Doing It"), ultra-deep, Floating Points-esque soulfulness ("Gentle", featuring the evocative vocals of Neil Macleod) and jaunty, synth-sporting dancefloor haziness ("Sorry That You Love Me").
Review: Having successfully joined forces with Samo DJ on two tidy EPs for Public Possession and the Trilogy Tapes, former cos/mes man 5ive makes his long-awaited solo debut. First up is the undeniably cosmic and spacey deep house chug of "Planet Be", where shimmering synth riffs and bubbly electronics cluster around a sparse, tribal-tinged groove. He successfully breaks up the beats and ups the dreaminess on languid ambient house cut "Almost Heaven", before wrapping what sound like Harmonium lines around a bustling Afro-house groove on "Contrast". 5ive rounds things off in impressive fashion via "Entropy", an ultra-deep affair that sounds like dub techno for the dream house generation.
Review: Smile & Wave appears from out of nowhere with two unknown names heading up the first release. There's no indication of who is behind A Houseband or Russian Hackers, but both of them have done a damn fine job of bringing two sure fire killers to wax. The first is "Another Love Another Happiness", which as the title candidly suggests is yet another version of the oft-sampled "Love & Happiness", this time framed in a bubbling, dubby deep house context for the mellow heads to soak up. By way of contrast Russian Hackers get busy with "303", bringing some forthright jack to the table.
Review: A Vision Of Panorama continues his synth exploration, expanding his vision towards new synthesizer motifs and dreamy chords on a vast array of late night cosmic g-funk grooves, modern funk and boogie inspired tracks. This time covers a different spectrum of sounds and atmospheres which merge to form a harmonious whole that can stands on territories of accomplished future soul, jazz and funk. Distinctly deeper and visibly more emotive deep house than just a technique of smooth Balearic instrumentation.
Review: Yam Who?'s Midnight Riot is back with another volume of funky, party starting edits, so come and get your fix. Aashton's "Pride" samples the diva vocals of you know who on this smooth and soulful number. Peza's "Black Gold" is pure classic disco, reminiscent of Salsoul, possibly? Fabiolous Barker's "The Paradise" has that retro and Balearic vibe that fans of labels like Love On The Rocks and Efficient Space will certainly dig. "The Jam" by Rayko is a re-edit of you guessed it: Technotronic's "Pump Up The Jam".
Review: Unsurprisingly, Above Smoke has long been closely associated with his brother Dubbyman's Deep Explorer label, and so it figures that the Spanish artist is releasing his debut album close to home. For those unfamiliar with the sound of Deep Explorer, think of the warmest, soul-inflected deep house rich with natural instrumentation as much as electronic elements and you should have an idea. On the album format Above Smoke has space to branch out into some refined neo soul excursions such as "Don't Stop (Till The Morning)" featuring Kikone's stirring vocal, but as ever it's the exemplary house music that truly defines this album.
Review: "Is the Cornuta Sound's return after a long resting time. This new 10" contains one of the most saved songs by Above Smoke (Deep Explorer) that runs into the jazz world and an outro take for djs. The flipside brings a great rework by the label boss (W&P Hgg)."
Review: US skateboarding magazine Jenkem Mag has long hosted DJ mixes in a range of styles on its website, and in 2017 the spin-off Jenkem Records launched with a multi-genre compilation called 'Beginnings'. Now, over two years later (we're clearly operating on 'skater time' here), the label's second release is this four-track EP from Brooklyn duo and recently announced Rinse FM residents AceMoMa, and it's almost as eclectic as its album-length predecessor, taking in off-kilter melodic house ('Ethereal Stepping'), deep tribal techno ('Nothing Crazy') and drum & bass (the retro junglism of 'Lucky Number 12' and the Bukem-esque 'Soul Deep Management').
Bleeding (feat Human Life - Mark E Instrumenal) (5:40)
Review: 2014 was a definitely a huge year for dance music, with many up and coming artists being thrown into the lifestyle of hectic partying and relentless touring schedules. This also means that those who exploded onto the scene prior are no longer the new kids on the block. A few years is a long time in the life of a DJ, and the first few years are often the maddest.
The Adana Twins are a perfect example of one of these artists, having emerged onto the scene in 2012 with releases such as 'Everyday' and 'Strange', from the off it was clear that they had everybody's undivided attention.' (Pulse Radio) With DJ names like Take It Easy and Friso, it's probably to be presumed that German duo Adana Twins don't take themselves too seriously. That tongue in cheek attitude could be heard on their first productions and remixes. It's now almost almost three years later and the Twins' music vision is constantly developing.
After their highly anticipated release 'Drive feat. Khan' from 2014 the 2 boys from Hamburg are finally back on Exploited. 'Bleeding' features vocal snippets from LA based Human Life. This anthem has been causing massive feedback in their DJ-Sets so far. We hope you like it too. Including also Remixes from The/Das (Life&Death/Krakatau) and Mark E (Spectral Sound/Merc).
Review: Remix klaxon! Addison Groove unleashes "Shango" from this summer's heavily played "Changa" EP and passes it round his mates for a cheeky buzz. The results include a harmonic Julian Jabre-style tech house riff from Ejeca, a sub-aquatic bubble-n-bleep stepper from O'Flynn, a woozy slo-mo broken beat affair from Nan Kole and a pounding operator-style 4x4 dub shakedown from Professor Amit. Subp Yao takes the closing honours with a spaced-out beat jam that sits somewhere between IG Culture and Roska. Shango-a-gogo.
Review: The enigmatic Adelphi Music Factory returns after last year's underground goodie "Javelin" with a brand new scorcher that's a sure shot to burn up dancefloor this year. "Feel Right Now (Power!)" is a joyous, driving anthem of resistance following in the tradition of proper late '90s funky house. On the flip, the soulful and uplifting loops of "Juicy" is a euphoric call to arms. Sisterhood. Brotherhood. Harmony. Dance.
Review: Mancunian Kevin Gorman used to make some great minimal techno on his Mikrowave imprint but has since moved on to create some of his best music under the Adesse Versions moniker. With a slew of fine edits and remixes under his belt, he presents us with a killer cover and tribute that's set to be one of the summer's biggest anthems. A tribute to the seminal New Order classic "Blue Monday", Gorman retains the very same Moog bass and ARP strings from the original, over a groovy breakbeat and a vocal reminiscent of Bernard Sumner himself. It was an ambitious feat, but Gorman manages to pull of an impressive rendition here, which also comes accompanied with a handy instrumental version on the flip.
Review: Unpredictable Dublin label maintain their capacity to surprise here, digging into the vaults of Ethiopian funk mob to reissue their 1984 accidental houser "Kalatashew Waga". Originating from the sole Admas album, Sons of Ethiopia, "Kalatashew Waga" has grown into something of a cult player amongst the more considered selectors over the years and gets pressed up for 12" by Major Problems replete with a fresh remastering job from the master Thomas P. Heckmann. Fans of the gliding style of lo-fi boogie PPU specialise in will love this track. Complementing the original, Major Problems have scored a brand new remix from long term Admas fan Andras Fox that brushes the track with some soft-hued new age bliss.
Review: We can confirm that Adam "Admin" Wickens is not only a hugely talented DJ and producer, but also a thoroughly nice chap. Here he makes his bow on Better Listen with a three-tracker packed to the rafters with warmth, soul and groove. Check first A-side "Adjust Your Love", a sample-fired workout that effortlessly joins the dots between disco, deep house and star-kissed jazz-funk, before turning your attention to the chopped-and-screwed samples, toasty sub-bass, languid beats and echoing piano snippets of "Easy Love Dub". The Bristol-based producer rounds things off in fine style via "Horizons", a slightly bouncier house cut that makes great use of some bluesy piano samples and another stoned, glassy-eyed bassline.
Review: This is Adam Wickens' - aka ADMIN - first appearance for Kolour LTD, and we're happy to see the UK deep house producer continuing his steady path to maturity. This two-tracker is part of the label's 'LTD 10s' series, and this particular one is the fourth instalment; we love it not only for the quality that has graced the releases up till now, but also because we're fools for the ten inch format. "Reach For Love" sounds like it could be on Moodymann's Mahogani, a sensual house charmer complete with gorgeous piano keys and assembled with pure hypnotic delight. Side B's "You've Got Me" is similarly cool and laid-back, but the beat is speedier here, the percussion more floor-centric and the vocals sexier than ever. What a gorgeous little tip - cop it!