Review: Mr Bongo's Brazil 45s series rarely misses a beat, with each successive seven-inch showcasing two more hard-to-find treats from the dim and distant past. The latest instalment opens with "Vou Morar No Teu Sorriso", a sought-after cut from Trio Tenura's eponymous 1971 MPB/soul fusion album. It's a genuinely summery treat, with ear-catching, reverb-heavy vocals and rising horn lines rising above a life-affirming backing track. On the flip you'll find "Quem Vai Querer", the title track from a superb 1977 album by Eliana Pittman. A breezy chunk of sizzling samba-soul, the cut features an impeccable lead vocal from Pittman and some sing-along group chorus vocals
Review: The latest drop on Constant Sound's electro branch, Infiltrate, comes from wild-card Bristolian chameleon Borai. When he's not dropping tuff, jungle-hewed rave wreckers for Hotline and Higher Level he's collaborating with October on refined house bumpers or dread-filled noise excursions in Spiritflesh. As if that wasn't enough, here he is turning his hand to genuinely fresh twists on the electro formula - a breath of fresh air in a crowded marketplace. "Flutta" keeps things snappy and decidedly pacey, but the overall mood is really quite light, while on "Rashaba" things get much darker, to an almost theatrical degree. Some of that breakbeat ruffness sneaks in on "Runnin" and then a little garage swing offsets the dubbed out showers of melody and cheeky rave stabs on EP closer "Narroways". Stunning stuff.
Review: Constant Sound's electro arm, Infiltrate, calls upon the considerable talents and technical heft of London Modular Alliance for a bruising EP of body-popping exploration strapped to a tough n' funky beatdown. "Crack Fox" is as nervy and nimble as the title might suggest, while "Regular Customer" takes things in a hyper-detailed direction compatible with the kind of advanced machine funk you expect from Silicon Scally. "Blinky" follows suit with another artfully woven web of twitchy synth hooks and deftly sequenced drums, and then "Other Worlds" switches things up with some seriously hefty bass pressure pivoting around a dubstep attitude towards space and moodiness.
Review: Ben Sims's Hardgroove imprint hits its 30th release and 20th year of operations with the beginning of a new split EP series entitled 'Toe to Toe', with Vol.1 provided by Mella Dee and Subradeon.
The UK's Mella Dee has developed a strong rep for robust club sounds via his aptly titled Warehouse Music imprint in recent years while the Berlin-based Subradeon duo have been dropping slick Detroit influenced sounds for Motech, Rekids and their own eponymous imprint.
Review: Mark Broom's long-awaited solo EP debut for Hardgroove is upon us and, true to form, for the M-Plant and Beardman producer is a masterclass in groove led, funk-laced techno.
'Outta Sight' opens the EP with purposeful, undulating stabs mirrored by a powerful sub while the second cut, 'L4LV' heads down a dystopian yet crunching, drum-led path to hammer its point home. The title track is Broom at his stripped-back best, with just a handful of elements and deft arrangement doing all the work while track four, 'TR1', serves as a neat, dancefloor wrecking summation of the moods, sounds and production touches of the preceding three cuts.
Review: After releasing a track via Ben Sims' Tribology compilation in 2018 VIL drops his 'Ritmica EP' on the British DJ's legendary Hardgroove imprint this October.
Previous output for Synewave, Analog Solutions and Planet Rhythm have won Lisbon's VIL support from across the techno community and the 'Ritmica EP's propellant cuts continue a strong discography.
Opener '97-1' is an urgent heads down affair that rarely takes a breath, instead relying on the ebb and flow of pads to provide contrast to the undulating bass and punchy rhythm track. 'Field', taken from last year's Tribology comp, is next up and unfolds a little more slowly with creeping breakbeats laying the grit atop a detailed hypnotic groove. On the flip, 'Breaker' and 'Hawav' go for the late-night dance floor assault from the off, the former employing breaks and phased, percussive lead sounds to substantial effect while the latter lets loose with distorted kicks and chewy, arpeggiated bass.
Review: For the second Riddims EP, collating the music of The New Morning, the label highlights further how a group based around the southern Germany Afro-Cosmic scene created a melange of music, a sound, that stepped wide of the house and techno movement then sweeping Europe.
In Global Rhythm Records, friends and producers, DJ Otti and Jay Pee, alongside DJ Thilo and DJ Fred, represented Munich "Westside", running parties and across just 11 self distributed releases, carved their own eclectic niche that were being played by the likes of scene DJs Stefan Egger and Enne.
Slowed afro-percussion, Brazilian flavours, elements of ethno folk, flighty wood instruments, trance overtures, shamanic voices and more are pieced together via heavy sample use in an early hip hop mastermix style.
Again with no track lasting much over 4 minutes, these musical vignettes are perfect tools for the eclectic DJ. Covering uplifting - almost Balearic grooves - to deeper mind-inducing spellbinds and to darker corners of trippy psychedelic invocation, this is The New Morning experience.
Review: The final 6 track reissue EP of Munich's mid-90s Afro-Cosmic project, The New Morning, completes the archival while expanding their sound of heavy African / Brazilian influenced sampling and percussion to include Balearic, House and Trance.
Again a trip to the Cosmic wonderlands of Global Rhythm Records, Riddims 3 brings this collection of DJ Otti and Jay Pee's, plus support from DJ Thilo and DJ Fred, vision to a close.
More eclectic than cohorts like Tribal Italia out of Cesana or Stefan Eggers' Sound Station Records, The New Morning enwraps world beat music for the eclectic, post-hippie generation. Monotonous beats, deep bass, memorable melodies, sampled in a tribal mystic.
Included here, the previously unreleased Kongo Bina points to a fuller sound, where heavy samples are overridden by analogue machines. As found across the 3 EPs, the collage of sounds, laced with live percussion, make the party.
From the weekly gatherings across north Italy into Austrian and on to Munich, some twenties years pass but the journey from the original Cosmic club to now fits. Time for an "Afro Funky" discovery.
Review: Madrid disco ambassador and well respected producer and selector Javi Frias is back with a new EP on his own label Night Shift Records including four amazing tracks that will delight disco and house lovers, covering the full spectrum of the editing craft: groovy disco funk and catchy soulful boogie on the A side, raw afro disco and uplifting modern soul on the B side. Another sure shot release that will burn any dancefloor in the next future.
Review: All producers on this timeless EP known for their contribution to NuDisco/Deep House Music. 1 Life records has enlisted the services of top talents. Deep house veterans Mateo & Matos wrap drifting deep spheres, lilting electronics & warm synth rhodes chords around a chunky groove on his fine beat interpretation for a brighter & breezier deep house vibe on a remix that benefits greatly from a squeezable synth bassline & some undulating TB-303 style acid motifs, while Rune Lindbaek deliver with Frisvold a driving chunk of dub-disco/deep house fusion rich in sparkling synthesizer lines, sun-kissed chords & his own rubbery post-punk bass. Studio don Vincent Inc bring unforgettable impressions & inspiration for mind, body & soul together with his remix. 4 tracks came together to tell music stories about hypnotic deepest stuff, depression, happiness, loneliness, love, miracles & magical experiences
When The Morning Comes (Kyle Hall & Amp Fiddler remix)
Review: Whether making musically rich deep hazy or hazy, pitched-down beatdown jams, Alton Miller rarely gets it wrong - as is proved by the impressive number of labels queuing up to sign singles from the veteran Detroit producer. The latest is Noble Square, a fine imprint run by Chicagoan heavyweight Ricardo Miranda. Even by Miller's standards, "When The Morning Comes" is extra-special, featuring as it does distinctive vocals from Amp Fiddler and extra percussion programming by Kyle Hall. The trio's slick, smooth and groovy original version comes accompanied by a similarly tasty instrumental mix and a wonderfully woozy and jazzy remix by Fiddler and Hall that's arguably even better than the inspired A-side mix.
Review: 30 years have passed since Detroit's short-lived but enormously influential Music Institute club closed its doors. Alton Miller was one of the three men who founded the club, and here launches the "official label" with a trio of ear-catching cuts made in tribute. He opens with "Inner 5", a deliciously fluid, melodious and positive chunk of smile-inducing Motor City deep house, before layering spacey jazz-funk synthesizer sounds and starry chords atop another loose-limbed, machine-driven house groove. Arguably best of all, though, is deep and hypnotic flipside "Inner 8", whose sci-fi sounds and locked-in beats make it a near perfect hybrid of late night house grooves and stargazing techno intent.
Review: The crew behind the Hizou label is rightly chuffed that they've managed to secure this two-tracker from Andres, a Detroit producer whose releases - whether aimed at deep house dancefloors or hip-hop heads - are rarely less than superb. The two tracks the label has selected are suitably strong, too. Check first A-side "All U Gotta Do Is Listen", a warm and hazy chunk of break-driven mid-tempo deep house rich in jazzy samples, swirling crowd noises, chunky bass and dewy-eyed instrumentation. Andres' vintage influences are explored further on flipside "Night Time Is The Right Time", a P-funk influenced deep house bumper whose swinging drums and elongated organ chords casually tip a wink to classic New Jersey garage.
Review: Steve O'Sullivan teams up once again with Frazer Campbell on MOSAICLTDX3.
Getting straight back into the stride they hit on 'Different Strokes', the duo land a double whammy of deeply swung grooves laced with airy Detroit influences.
Laying down the law with "Straight to the Source", the pair conjure up a cheeky homage to the garage influenced sounds of the late 90's. Featuring a full level of bass in your face, jacking beats and super catchy off kilter stabs - there's no mistaking a groove like this... they really do mean business.
On the flip they revisit 'Hypnotonic.' The "West Side Shuffle" version is similarly sparse in feel to the original, yet strikes a fresh balance as less pervasive percussion bounces around to tight rhythmic bass end pulses, dubbed up vocals and subtle effected tweaks. Continuing to capture a less frenzied moment, this new take will certainly please the heads down massive.
Review: We're proud to present these four tracks of pure electronica on a Ferox debut EP from Macedonian maestro Mihail P. Despite his young age, it's easy to hear the influence of 90's UK techno in this release with a slight hint of Terrace and Dan Curtin. With five quality releases under his belt, Mihail is already fast becoming a favourite on the underground electronic scene and obviously injects his own techno soul into his productions. Available on 180g vinyl only.
Review: After taking time out to search for the right blend of carefully curated tracks, Bristol-based dancefloor futurists Innate return with a third multi-artist EP - shot through with melody, warmth and soul.
A quartet of timeless-sounding tracks full of stargazing sounds, undulating acid lines, far-sighted electronics and crackling beats, the A side kicks off with Perseus Traxx's "Drifting In Space": a loose-limbed exercise in analogue house deepness that wraps slowly shifting pads, meandering melodies and pulsating TB-303 motifs around broken house drums.
Welcoming Australian scene stalwart Ewan Jansen to the fray with "Sinders", he effortlessly blurs the boundaries between far-sighted, Motor City style techno and the kind of head-in-the-clouds analogue sounds that have always been his forte.
On the flip, Reedale Rise adds his touch with "Coral". In keeping with the brilliance of his 2018 debut album "Luminous Air", he drops a colourful, picturesque voyage into deep electro territory rich in ear-catching melodies, engaging chord sequences and crunchy machine percussion. To round, label co-founder Owain K returns with "Teifi", another ultra-deep treat: an enveloping, dancefloor excursion rich in fluttering lead lines, slowly expanding chords, vintage bass and punchy drums. A fitting conclusion to Innate's latest immaculate, eyes-closed voyage."
Review: Next in store for the prestigious Icelandic label AE Recordings is a collaboration between well-known Icelandic & Russian artists. The Moscow legend Anton Kubikov delivers a beautiful & haunting minimal techno track, bound to encapsulate the essence of Russian winter - while SCSI-9 offers a dubby and a hypnotic techno anthem. The Icelandic regulars of the label bring their goods to the table. The ever-intriguing collaboration of Ohm & Octal Industries never ceases to disappoint - and their contribution is an intriguing atmospheric deep house track, ideal for home-listening as well for the late-night rooms. The Thule Records label boss Thor offers a musical equivalent of a megafauna with his track - heavy hitting dub chords, mindbending delays & that little extra magic that we all love from the Icelandic god of thunder. Essential for the record bag!
Review: Faze Action Records presents the official reissue of three of Micky Milans classic tracks from the early 80's, including the stunning "Quando Tu Danses", orginally recorded in 1980. This hybridAof Disco and Brazilian music, with percussion and infectious piano hooks, has been given a re edit by Pacha resident Willie Graff and is already receiving big support from DJ Harvey at his Pikes residency in Ibiza. This track is now officially available for the first time on one side of a 12".
Micky Milan came to prominence in the early to mid 70s as one of France's first DJ's to support the Funk and Disco sounds from the US. Packing out clubs in Paris and delivering marathon sets til 6 in the morning, Milan quickly earned a reputation as a top DJ in the Paris nightlife scene with touring artists such as Prince, Madonna, Delegation all dropping in to catch him spin.
On B1 we have "C'est Une Bombe", a classic example of French boogie, included here is the Faze Action Edit and on B2 we have the dreamy balearic boogie sounds of "Les Vacances On S'Eclate, On S'Evade".
Review: After a relatively quiet 2018, 2019 has seen Craig Bratley back on form with edits and remixes on Magic Wand, Secret Fusion, Wonder Stories and Rebirth. This first release on new label Automatism sees Bratley continue to develop the themes presented on his ep for Futureboogie. The first track, 'Ursa Minor', is straight up cosmic disco. The influences behind 'Dark Matter' are apparent on hearing the first four bars and should strike a chord with fans of Vangelis and Carpenter. 'Exquisite Corpse' was previously released on a Throne Of Blood compilation. Here we have the Zero Gravity Mix , mixed down again and with the drums removed, we are presented with a new perspective, providing more space and dare I say it 'Gravity' Beautiful. To finish the EP, 'Running To Paradise' sees Bratley in full on Balearic mode and will sound perfect sat by the Adriatic
Review: Scott Boutin aka Blue Soul has been with us since the label was in it's infancy. This 3 song 12" properly showcases Bluesoul's otherworldly dub house acid disco sound that is uniquely his own. Mastered by Dietrich Schoenemann at Complete.
Review: Mike 'Agent X' Clark is a true hero of the Detroit scene, but he rarely gets the props he deserves, making any outing of his a cause for celebration. El Prevost's No Speakers label knows what's up, and they've drafted in Clark for his killer jam "The Heat." The name is no foil, this track will set any party ablaze with its distinctive speech sample and saucy rhythm section. Alongside the original, there is a strong cast of remixers on hand to serve up deadly variations, from the label boss' skipping, psyched-out groover to Ben Sims' appropriately thumping techno workout. Peter Rocket especially impresses with a crafty breaks version that should slot in nicely with the resurgent electro scene.
Simple Symmetry & Inigo Vontier - "Prayer To The Spiritual"
Facets - "Distant Chants"
Marvin & Guy - "There's No Matter"
Review: After the sold-out first edition of Correcciones, Mexican label Calypso returns with Volume 2 of the series, unveiling four strong contenders for Edit of the Year. Starting things off, Calypso co-label boss Thomass Jackson has his way with a weirdo Polish jazz/fusion/funk track that keeps turning left while continually finding the right direction.
Russian label regulars Simple Symmetry join forces with co-label boss INigo Vontier to deliver a "monster peak-time mantra" that's as perfect for morning rites as it is for nocturnal adventures.
On the B-side, New York's Facets slows down the tempo of an old goa gem - the result has already gotten support from the likes of Intergalactic Gary, Alexis Le Tan and many others.
Volume 2 closes out in the hands of Italian dandys Marvin & Guy, who offer a magnificent take on a forgotten disco classic.
Timeless edits indeed.
Review: In recent years Fred Peterkin has been focusing on releasing music under his now more familiar Fred P alias rather than the Black Jazz Consortium pseudonym with which he first made his mark back in the late 2000s. Here he dons the latter alias once more for a triple-vinyl album that counts amongst his most alluring, evocative, musically intricate and ear-pleasing full-length excursions to date. It's largely a warm, positive and calming affair, with Peterkin wrapping glistening jazz guitars, dreamy chords, spacey effects, scat vocals and jazz-funk basslines around grooves that variously touch on broken beat, Motor City deep house, Latin house and the kind of languid, organic rhythms more associated with the productions of Osunlade and Ron Trent. In a word: sumptuous.