Review: Brawther's Negentropy label has already carried gold star material from Ron Obvious and the man himself, and now it's the turn of debutant producer Zweizig to show off his wares. This assured 12" leads in with the ambient intro "Gewissen" before the crisp minimal funk of "Rhythm Tension" kicks in with its shimmering and shuddering sound design pinging around the dexterous beat. "Zephyr" is a smoky affair with a snappy broken beat and lots of subtle organic matter writhing in the middle distance. "Rehash Repeat" takes things deep and dubby to complete the set, all mellow hiccupping rhythm accents and hazy melodic phrases.
Review: Having previously impressed with two suitably atmospheric EPs on Propersound, Zug has decided to launch his own imprint. This label debut is naturally rather delicious, with the producer offering up a quartet of analogue-rich cuts that effortlessly combine the sci-fi sounding futurism of Detroit with the comforting melodiousness of Larry Heard. Such is the quality throughout that picking highlights is tough, though we're particularly enjoying the gentle grooves and alien melodies of "Constancia" and the suitably dubby, intergalactic pulse of EP opener "Alegria". Elsewhere, "Bienestar" combines bleeping melodies, dreamy chords and shuffling, tech-house style beats, while "Celebracion" sees him wrap far-sighted electronics around a bustling, two-step influenced rhythm track.
Review: Over the last four years, Toulouse twosome Zendid have maintained a steady release schedule, dropping highly regarded EPs on such labels as Elephant Moon, Infuse, Timeframe and Discobar. Here they return to the latter label with a fresh four-track missive. As the title suggests, opener "Space" tends towards to intergalactic, with futurist electronic beeps and weightless chords clustering around a rolling, sub-bass-heavy tech-house groove. "Virgin Virgin" is a deeper, looser and slightly warmer mid set box jam, while "Berlin 6" is a stripped-back, funk-fuelled stomper rich in glitchy stabs and mind-altering bass. The EP also includes a tasty bonus in the shape of Maayan Nidam's smooth, deep and bass-heavy remix of "Space".
Review: Z Lovecraft (AKA Rhythm Section International family member Mali Baden-Powell) made his debut last year via an EP on No Bad Days that cheerfully joined the dots between acid, deep house, hip-hop and early hardcore style breakbeats. There's a far mellower feel to this three-track outing on Guru Meditation, even if breezy opener "Verge Dub" does underpin jammed-out electric piano chords and dreamy electronics with shuffling breakbeats and a bustling sub-bass motif. "Arklight Dub" joins the dots between dub techno and spacey deep house, while nine-minute B-side "Hannah's Theme (Bliss Version)" is the kind of fluid, exceptionally picturesque shuffler that could have come from the studio of one of Italy's leading dream house crews during the ambient house era.
Review: Yoyaku Distribution's matter-of-fact YYY series continues to impress, delivering a third "mystery" 12" of the year to date. The un-credited producer gets straight down to business on side A, wrapping darting melodies and liquid electronics around fizzing cymbals, undulating kick drums and warm bass in an outer-space tech-house style. There's a slightly darker and more energy-packed feel to the flipside track, whose staccato percussion hits, restless drum machine handclaps and back-alley stabs sound like they were created with sweaty basement dancefloors in mind (despite the presence of the series' usual fluid chords).
Review: More evocative and thought provoking music for discerning dancefloors, courtesy of Japan's always reliable Mule Musiq. This time it's courtesy of German duo Daniel Stroeter and Martin Mueller aka youANDme. They are a surprising addition to the label, considering their recent appearances for labels as diverse as Poker Flat to Nervous and even Gruuv, but if the Belong 12" can prove anything - it's that the duo has a strong diversity within their sonic repertoire. From the soulful and slow burning title track which features Black Soda's sensual vocals above the duo's majestic arrangement, to "Unbound" which is a deep, dubbed-out and introspective cut for heads-down moments in the early hours.
Review: Australian duo Yolanda Be Cool are back. The outfit behind the worldwide smash hit "We No Speak Americano" with DCUP in 2010 hail from Sydney, and are comprised of Sylvester Martinez and Johnson Peterson. They are back on local label Sweat It Out, an imprint that they have been stalwarts of for the last decade, in addition to releases for Dim Mak and Nurvous. "Musika" is a melodic and emotive deep house jam on an Afro and 'techy' tip - which will appeal to fans of the Innervisions sound. There are some great remixes too: Babert (Disco Revenge) delivers a very retro Italo house rendition, while Los Angeles based DJ Dateless goes for a classic '90s house perspective that dives deep.
Review: For his latest trick, London-based house producer Maik Yells has decided to tell tales of brave Ulises on Germany's fast-rising Taverna Tracks stable. He casts off into the unknown via the deep, woozy and gently spacey tech-house/deep house fusion of "Atopos", before foot-stepping into jazzier worlds via the swinging, crackling beats, warm bass and jammed out electric piano motifs of "Latika". Over on the back page (sorry, B-side), Ed Herbst delivers a sturdy but dreamy, ultra-deep dub of "Atopos", before "Yulises" sees Yells pepper a bustling, Robsoul style tech-house groove with weird noises and eccentric, Maurice Fulton style synth solos.
Review: If you're a minimal fan and don't know Yama Music, you've been sleeping. Their first three EPs flew off the shelves and into crates of heady DJs across Europe. Once again the eponymous Yama Music is or are behind the beats and it's forward thinking, no nonsense dancing music of the highest order. "Acisaronno" is proper tech house with delicate hi hats and steel plated drums making for a frictionless groove, while "Chinchilla Shuffle" is the sort of slightly wonky and oddball track that Craig Richard drops on the regular. Freaky, spaced out and atmospheric, tech house doesn't get much better.
Review: Paris-based Yakine was there at when minimal turned techy, and when techy was kept minimalistic. Ever since those late naughtiest years, the producer has been crafting his sound by searching for the perfect groove, and we think he's found it with this latest EP for the Disjoint label. These three tunes are more mechanical than his previous efforts; the opener "St Val 017" boasts a mean electro bass at its core, with "Each Day" also choosing to adopt a more brown loop beat a-la industriale, and "T Beat" pumping out more dread than dance grooves.
Review: It was over two years ago when Henrik Schwarz first revealed his remix of "Asembi Ara Amba", a 2015 cut by Ghanaian artist Yusuf Bayani and German funk stalwarts Poets of Rhythm under the alternative Polyversal Souls alias. Here the now legendary rework finally gets an official release. On the A-Side you'll find Schwarz's now-familiar "Version", where Bayani's superb vocals and sampled Afro-funk horns rise above classic-sounding (think Inner City circa 1989) electronic riffs, rolling house beats and a chunky, dub-wise bassline. You'll find an inspired, previously unheard bonus on the flip in the shape of Schwarz's 'Beatless' mix, which re-imagines the track as a spacey, other-worldly chunk of mesmerizing Afro-ambient.
Review: The Beeyou label strikes ahead with its third release, continuing to champion warm, musical deep house from a range of emergent producers. XHZ makes a debut appearance here with the epic "Jazz 2 Jazz", which progresses through a woozy nocturnal mood to wind up in an effervescent, Rhodes-soaked finale. Jake Flory keeps things simmering on the tracky but engaging "14th Groove", before following up with the effortlessly cool chord drops of "Distress". With melodious invention at its heart and the needs of the dancefloor well catered for, the Beeyou crew have delivered another essential package for discerning spinners.
Review: You could say Robag Wruhme has been around the block a few times, thanks to a storied career that's seen him release music with Sonar Kollektiv, Circus Company and the many extensions of the Kompakt family. This latest release for Pampa is his second appearance on DJ Koze's label and he delivers a varied EP of sounds, ranging from the sewer techno of "Cybekks" to the crackly, John Beltran-like ambience of "Anton I". "Volta Cobby" is a sizzling cut for the summer festival stage (good timing Pampa) while "Anton II" is another ambient session, this time a little more animated thanks to chimes similar to what's heard in Pantha Du Prince's music. A record for the festival or the chilled out lounge room.