Review: Serenity is a new label geared towards raising money and awareness around mental health in the music industry. The label kicks off in fine style with the supple, expressive techno of John Shima and Mihail P offering up two tracks each. Shima takes the A side with the warm and bubbling synth expressions of "Seasons" before taking things in a more hypnotic direction on the ever-so-slightly trancey "Hunter Mind". Mihail P maintains a similar vintage techno sound palette, but pings for positive constellations with the jubilant "Momentum" before veering into blissful breakbeat on "Neon Hologarden".
Review: Given that he was making disco-fired house as far back as the early noughties, Simon Marlin AKA The Shapeshifters is a perfect fit for Defected's disco-focussed Glitterbox sub-label. These days Marlin's productions are closer to "real" disco than funky house, as last year's Salsoul influenced "Life Is A Dancefloor" with singer Kimberly Davis proved. "Second Chance" explores similar musical pastures, with the EP opening club mix layering Tony Montana-esque orchestration and Loleatta-like vocals atop a bouncy beat. Moplen delivers a classic disco revision mixed in a Tom Moulton style, where there's more clarity to each showcased piece of instrumentation, while the Shapeshifters provide a dub mix style "Reprise" that rises and falls in all the right places. A handy, delay-laden acapella version completes a very strong EP.
Review: Is East End Dubz the hardest working producer in the 21st century tech-house scene? He's certainly prolific, as his sprawling discography attests, but what's more impressive is the consistent quality of his releases. He's hit the mark yet again on this EP for his self-titled imprint. A-side "Wobble" is particularly potent, featuring as it does a fizzing fusion of insatiably funky bass, surging acid lines and shoulder-swinging beats. "Slammin" is closer in tone and style to the producer's trademark tech-house glitchiness - all mangled electronic motifs, straightened-out Villalobos drums and deep bass - while "Izit" is a tidy, acid-flecked box jam that increases in weight and intensity as the track progresses.
Review: For those who either weren't around or not alive in the late 1990s, Housey Doingz was an all-star collective of British producers - including scene stalwarts Terry Francis and Nathan Coles - who helped codified the then emerging tech-house sound via a string of EPs and a superb debut album, "Doing It". This EP from reissue specialists Mint Condition mines that album, offering up four of the most sought-after and timeless tracks. Check first the electro-flavoured late-night intoxication of "Curly Wurly" - all rugged acid lines, twinkling lead lines and stabbing bass - before admiring the more breakbeat-flavoured classical tech-house purity of "The Poets". Elsewhere, shuffling, tech-tinged beats nestle beneath dreamy deep house chords on "Ambidextrous Left", while "Flying Saucer" is a creepy, all-action affair bestowed with a genuine sense of forward momentum.
Review: When Eric Prydz fancies offering up some forthright, warehouse-ready techno, he fires up the Mouseville label and dons the Cirez D alias. Clearly, he's in a rave-igniting mood right now, because this two-tracker is the first Cirez D outing - and Mouseville release - for almost two years. There's a definite "massive room" vibe emerging from A-side "Valborg", where decidedly foreboding lead lines and ghostly chords ride a chunky, Drumcode-friendly techno beat. The saucer-eyed, hands-aloft "festival techno" feel continues on flipside "The Raid", which cleverly peppers a house-tempo rhythm track with the sort of raw, razor-sharp riffs more often found in neo-trance productions.
Review: Disordered Rhythm Metronomy may be a puzzling (and, let's face it, rather strange) artistic alias, but the two men behind the project, Ricardo Villalobos and Edward, have produced some of the most distinctive leftfield techno of the last decade. As a result, you'd expect their first joint EP to be a killer... and it is. A-side "Vormlock" is a rubbery, off-kilter treat, with the experienced duo peppering an elastic synth bassline and sparse, skittish drums with glitchy stabs, tipsy lead lines and all manner of wonky, out-of-this-world noises. Over on the flipside you'll find title track "Down", a deeper and dreamier chunk of spacey minimalism in which typical Villalobos style percussion and softly squelching bass comes cloaked in some suitably intergalactic synthesizer chords.
Immulsion (Come To Me In Full Electric mix) (5:40)
Immulsion (That Kind Of Kink mix) (6:33)
Review: Having devoted much time of late to the release of fresh material from his Karenn project with Pariah, this solo single from Jamie Roberts AKA Blawan is long overdue. Roberts opens with the thumping intensity of "40 Spiral", where cut-up, nightmarish vocal samples buzz around a ten-ton techno beat, before skipping his way through the loose-limbed, lof-fi techno-funk of "Immulsion (Come To Me In Full Electric Mix)". You'll find an alternate version of that track - the "That Kind Of Kink Mix"- at the end of the EP, and it's worth a listen thanks to a quirkier rhythm, stranger noises and discordant riffs. B-side opener "Rain", a kind of production-line clang-fest underpinned with formidably redlined beats, is also well worth a listen.
Review: Back in 1998 Groove Chronicles took on Myron's "We Can Get Down", delivering a hard-stepping breaks-y version which was dazzlingly fresh for the time, and still sounds effervescent now. DPR continue their incredible service to archival garage holy grails by digging this one out of the dust and offering up some newly aired versions to take you even deeper. This is the sweet and smoky side of the UKG scene, not least on the spacious and dubby "2step Re:re:refix" that kicks off the B-side. Mellow, moody and oh so smooth, but with bass pressure where it counts. Don't sleep on this one - it's guaranteed to fly out.
Review: Since making her debut with a fine EP of lo-fi deep house mutations on Clipp.art in 2018, Park Hye-Jin has become one of underground dance music's most talked-about artists - a DJ/producer hotly tipped to follow in the footsteps of fellow South Korean Peggy Gou. This mini album will only increase the hype further, because it's genuinely really good. Across the course of six tracks, she offers up an attractive, club-ready mixture of dreamy deep house haziness ("Like This"), footwork-inspired up-tempo goodness (the similarly ear-pleasing "Can You" and "How Come"), twinkling South Korean R&B-pop (the bilingual "How Can I"), dense and weighty dark room techno (the ace "No"), and extra-percussive, life-affirming electronica ("Beautiful").
Review: Here's something to set the pulse racing: a bumper collection of fresh remixes of tracks from Kraak & Smaak's superb 2019 album "Pleasure Centre". The Dutch combo's varied choice of remixers is notable, though it's the fact that they've all delivered the goods that makes the set so impressive. The plentiful highlights include Yuksek's driving, dub disco-inspired tweak of "Sweet Time", a deliciously dusty and drowsy downtempo soul revision of "Soul Liberator" by Karem Akdag, Atjazz's lusciously jazzy deep house version of "Say The Word", an acid-fired Turbitto re-wire of "Pleasure Centre" and a frankly superb boogie-house update of "24Hr Fling" by Mr Reliable himself, Opolopo.
Review: REPRESS ALERT! In another life, the crew behind Reverberations (nicknamed Reverb to many) released literally hundreds of titles on various labels including their own. 25 years after their launch, their music is more in demand than ever before. This special release on the later incarnation, RvS, handpicks four in-demand tracks and remixes by Silverlining, Ravi McArthur and their collaboration, Impossible beings. Do not miss!
Earth Wind & Fire - "Fantazy" (Beatconductor rework) (8:22)
Michael Jackson - "Human" (Beatconductor rework) (8:23)
Review: Gilles Peterson's Arc label stays busy in its early days with another choice reissue, this time of a 1973 compilation that brims with soulful charm. The impossible to find original came on obscure Hollywood label SECO Sounds Records and pulls together the best of songwriter and musician George Semper's catalogue. There are organ driven funk jams, glowing r&b odes and plenty of cosmic funk explorations, uptempo stompers and downtempo slow jams to make your heart swell with a fine array of contributing vocalists adding all the more colour. This is a collection of all killer, hard to find material that shines a deserving light on an often overlooked talent.
Get Over U (Mr Director's 'Feels Good' dub) (9:04)
Get Over U (Director's cut mix - Sami Dee edit) (6:15)
Review: SoSure Music have re-released Director's Cut's 2012 funky house anthem "Can't Get Over U" with a couple of modern reshapes for modern dance floors. The duo was comprised of 'Godfather of house music' Frankie Knuckles with veteran producer Eric Kupper. Berlin's Chambray (REKIDS/&Friends/Dirtybird) injects a bouncy lo-fi shuffle into his rework, while industry legend Tedd Patterson keeps that classic vibe alive - like only he can - on his version. On the flip, we have Frankie's own 'Mr Director's 'Feels Good' Dub' (a vinyl exclusive) of which Frenchman Sami Dee serves up a brilliant edit as well.
Review: We were rather impressed by the first volume in the CCCP Edits series, a re-edit imprint seemingly dedicated to offering up reworks of obscure, largely unknown musical gems from Soviet-era Russia, so hopes are sky-high for this second instalment. We shouldn't have worried. Opener "Nochi" is a deep, woozy and off-kilter chunk of two-step garage/jazz-funk fusion, while "Ne Mojet Bit" is the most Balearic electro track we've heard in yonks. The fun continues on the flip, where the glassy-eyed deep pop-goes-two-step flex of "T=H2O" comes accompanied with the hip-house era breakbeat-house warmth (and jazzy keys) of standout track "Hare, Krishna".
Review: Here's a record perfectly suited to the Emotional Rescue sphere. International Noise Orchestra was born out of a collaboration between Berliner Ulrich Homberg and Algerian drummer Jol Allouche, first embarked on in the 1980s when they sought to combine 'new technology with old'. The results are wonderfully vibrant, evocative of the era but also packed with open-ended experimentation that sounds fresh more than 30 years later. There's a push and pull between the collaborating parties, but the frisson between cultures and methods is where this record gets its unique groove from, all delivered with a slick 80s cool it's hard to resist.
Review: When it comes to the jazzier, more Latin-focused side of GAMM's output, much of the best material has always come courtesy of Sugarloaf Gangsters - the re-edit alter ego of carnival house maestros Spiritual South. Here they return to the Swedish imprint for the first time in 14 years with a two-tracker that's every bit as sweaty and celebratory as their previous work. Check for example A-side "Temarasa", a brilliantly tweaked and subtly touched-up revision of a heavily percussive Brazilian workout laden with sizzling samba horns and heavy funk guitars. Equally as potent is flipside "Chor Gway", an epic African style drum track peppered with dub style electronic noises underpinned with a deliciously weighty, sub-heavy bassline.
Now That I Got To Know You (instrumental dub) (8:22)
Review: The honeyed, effortlessly soulful vocals of Reggie Hall have been a feature of Chicago house since the late 1980s, when he appeared on a Dance Mania release by Victor Romeo. He's released plenty of music since then, though this hook-up with Glenn Underground - who produced the music - and fellow house veteran Byron Stingily (who provided backing vocals) is still his first outing for almost 12 years. The A-side full vocal version is simply superb, with Hall's superb, impassioned, gospel-inspired vocals riding a bouncy, Osunlade style groove, jazzy guitars, sustained church organ chords and all manner of intricate musical details. Glenn Underground dons the CVO alias to deliver a slightly tougher, more groove-driven B-side "Dub" that nevertheless includes plenty of sun-bright musical warmth.
Review: We may not be able to gather to dance outdoors under a blazing sun or a blanket of stars, but there's no harm in a little musical daydreaming. That's what the latest multi-artist Ravenelli Disco Club release is all about: summery escapism that comes with a big dollop of rush-inducing disco release. Ethyene sets the tone with the colourful boogie-house fusion of "Let Love" - all twinkling synth motifs, echoing percussion hits, thickset grooves and hazy vocal samples - before Carlo raises the temperature via some jazzy deep house heaviness in the vein of Derrick Carter's "boompty" era. Over on side B, Hotmood's "Magical Flight" is a surging, string-drenched disco-house roller, while Rees' "The Way You Mood" is a tooled-up take on what sounds like a classic Philadelphia International cut.
Review: Hold tight for more absolutely essential garage fodder from the Plastik People camp. This sharp and snappy two-tracker kicks off with Highrise, aka Darlington-based producer Dinn Warde who's been making increasingly large splashes with his jungle productions as Dwarde and more recently his on-point garage productions. His mix of "Want You Back" is a tightly wound, bumping slice of 4x4 with cool and deadly organ stabs. By contrast, label boss Marc Cotterell brings a more outwardly soulful flavour to his original version, leaning on uplifting chord sequences and putting the vocal front and centre. Depending on the mood you're looking to set, this record has you covered in two distinct and supremely classy ways.
Coffee In The Morning (Prins Thomas Diskomiks) (10:29)
Coffee In The Morning (dub mix) (6:23)
Review: Here's something to give your day the kick-start it needs: a caffeine-rich collaboration between Detroit Swindle and sometime Tartelet artist Jitwam. In its original form, "Coffee in the Morning" is funky and addictive, with ear-catching lead vocals riding a chunky groove rich in warm Rhodes chords, disco-style bass, bustling house drums, layered hand percussion and snaking sax motifs. It comes accompanied by two flipside revisions - a deliciously rubbery, all-action "Diskomiks" from Prins Thomas that's arguably even better than the original version, as well as a driving Dub Mix that contains a stunningly saucer-eyed breakdown - as well as a jaunty, synth-heavy classic house style bonus cut ("Move Out of the Way"). In a word: essential.
Review: Killarney's David Sheerin makes a strong step into the spotlight with this 12" on House Of Disco, which finds him rounding out his musical identity with some seriously slick house cuts. "Our Love" is a smooth and bubbling track underpinned by some tidy acid and peppered with vocals on top, while "Forgotten" rides a dusty groove and hazy chords for a lazy summer treat. "Jiraya" takes things higher with strafing arpeggios orbiting a steadfast groove, and then "Funk, Nah" drops some big room dynamics to seal the deal on this sturdy breakthrough EP.
Eddie Leader - "Way Back" (feat Hector Moralez) (5:54)
Washerman - "Twilite" (6:43)
Brett Johnson - "Mr Smarty Pants" (6:12)
Rhythm Plate - "Keep Moving" (6:40)
Review: Hudd Traxx 3rd installment of their 10th Anniversary series comes from Eddie Leader, Hector Moralez, Washerman, Brett Johnson & Rhythm Plate. Label owner Eddie Leader delivers a deep & moody house groover with the slick vocals of long time Hudd Artist Hector Moralez, aptly title 'Way Back'. Washerman picks the pace up with 'Twilite', which is reminiscent of legendary Detroit label Underground Resistance, and adds to the continued diversity of this project. Brett Johnson's 'Mr Smarty Pants' is re-released after gaining plays from the likes of Laurent Garnier and an edit by Dyed Soundorom. Closing out the EP are 2 of the most underrated Producers in the business; Rhythm Plate. 'Keep Moving' was Overshadowed by 'Inside Me' on the 'Robbin Hudd EP' in 2007 but is given it's time to shine on 'Now & Then Part 3' and is a fine addition to the 10 Year celebrations.
Review: Fabrice Lig on DJ Bone's Subject Detroit label backed with killer remixes from Aaron Carl and DJ Bone! Allegedly stored in the Subject archives for some time, "Hmong Dignity" is finally unleashed and the original will be familiar to anyone that's witnessed a DJ Bone set in recent years. Eminently raw, but filled with melody thanks to those chords and restless riffs, "Hmong Dignity" is a fine example of how Detroit influenced European techno. A remix from the late, great Aaron Carl opens the B Side, lending the track a familiar dose of murkiness thanks to some stomach churning bass, whilst that instantly recognisable central melody is wisely retained. The accompanying remix from DJ Bone glides along on a tough techno meets electro vibe, superbly slicing up the melodic element to form an entirely different refrain.
Review: After a relatively quiet start to his career last year, Rossi is ready to move things up a notch via a solo vinyl debut for the popular Eastenderz imprint. He begins with "Kickin' It", a deliciously groovy and energy-packed affair which wraps glitchy electronics and layered vocal sounds around swinging, UK garage-influenced tech-house beats and a killer bassline, before opting for a deeper and more melodious - but no less groovy or punchy - vibe on "Feelings". Elsewhere, "24 Trips" manages to be bass-heavy, spacey and bumpin' in equal measure, while closing cut "Sundown" is the kind of dreamy and tactile tech-house jam that we can imagine would sound terrific at sunset.
Ed Wizard & Disco Double Dee - "Shades Of Blue" (Thatmanmonkz remix) (5:50)
Ed Wizard & Disco Double Dee - "Cantina" (6:21)
Hotmood - "Chico Shake" (6:08)
Hotmood - "El-Artista" (7:04)
Review: Editorial's 28th vinyl outing is a split affair, with label mainstays Ed Wizard & Disco Double Dee handling the A side and Hotmood holding court on the B. Interestingly, the standout of Ed Wizard & Disco Double Dee's side is a wonderfully groovy, synth-sporting deep house re-make of "Shades of Blue" by Sheffield-based Leicester Lad Scott Moncrieff AKA Thatmanmonkz, though the head-nodding, toe-tapping chunk of jazz-funk/instrumental soul that follows it, "Cantina", is also rather good. As for Hotmood, they provide some instant party-starting vibes via the low-slung disco-funk-meets-house loop jam "Chico Shake", before exploring breezier dancefloor pastures via the flute-sporting goodness of "El Arista". In a word: solid.
Review: The polish artist Aphreme (Octave Moods) just landed in Minuendo with new work called "Beneath The Windy Trees EP", this release contains three timeless deep house tracks with american flavour perfect to floor. Extra remix by Ernie, head of Minuendo Recordings.
Review: With previous releases from some of the top heads of the electronic spectrum, including Leif, Steevio, Arnaldo and more, the imprint UntilMyHeartStops returns with its latest release, this time for mysterious producer Ekeko. Rich analog tape waves sit nicely beside thick 909 rhythmic elements throughout this killer three tracker. The title track "Beyond Good & Evil" starts things of with strong spirit, taking pulsations of warping synths and balancing them with hazy club driven patterns. This theme continues through "FM Joy" and "Eye Ache" but with a wider focus on the dubbier elements of the electro and house spectrum.
Review: Having recently revived his Utopia Project alias for a surprise new 12" on Running Back, legendary New York deep house producer Rheji Burrell returns to Gerd Janson's label with an EP credited to another one of his Nu Groove era pseudonyms, NY Housin' Authority. "Out Of Body Experience" boasts seven tracks, all of which explore similar sonic pastures to the project's classic, late '80s/early '90s material. That means tactile synthesizer basslines, ear-catching melodies, classic house synth sounds and drum machine beats rich in Burrell's usual infectious swing. Highlights include the breezy and life-affirming jazziness of "3rd Time", the bass-heavy, intergalactic thump of "5th Time" (a cut that would neatly fit into Bleep techno-influenced sets) and the summery warmth of "2nd Time".
Momma's Groove (Jimpster Hip Replacement mix) (7:36)
Review: The latest must-check missive from deep house reissue specialists Groovin' takes us back to 2007 and one of the most infectious, insatiable cuts in Osunlade's sprawling back catalogue. First featured on his Strictly Rhythm-released album "Elements Beyond", "Momma's Groove" features Osunlade adding his own evocative spoken word vocals to a low-down deep house groover crafted from disco-funk style bass, flanged guitar licks, jazzy sax solos and typically tribal drums. Over on side B there's a chance to Jimpster's "Hip Replacement Mix", which transforms Osunlade's killer cut into a rolling slab of immersive deep house haziness perfectly suited to heads-down peak-time plays.
Review: "Completing a quick fire trio of new EPs, Constant Sound hits release number six with a pair of new tracks from VRSION that come with a dance floor friendly remix from Persuader. VRSION is a German producer who has already made a big impact with his release on Craig Richards' excellent The Nothing Special label. Following up that in fine style is the opener here, 'Torn', which is a hurried and urgent track that sits on the divide between house and techno. It is driven and slick, rubbery and hypnotic but has plenty of nuance and funk in its well programmed drums. Some occult sounds and wordless vocals embellished the whole thing and it really is the sort of track that blows dance floors apart and will stand out in any set. 'Capricorn Meet Leo' then toys with kinked drum patterns, rattling percussion and fathom deep bass that sucks you right into VRSION's world. It's a restless place where harmonies ride up and down the scale, cause claps come at you from odd angles and dark vocals add a sense of paranoia. Remixing this one is Persuader, who does so with a stripped back sense of restrain. he retains the original's weirdness, but layers in serene pads and tripped out atmospherics that really make it ripe for playing at 4am. This is the most adventurous release yet for Constant Sound, and is sure to prove one of its bets as a result."
Review: Escape From New York's 1984 cut "Fire In My Heart" has long been considered something of a Balearic classic. Original copies of the Rollerball Records release 12" are hard to come by, though, so this reissue is more than welcome. The original version - all slo-mo electro drums, rubbery dub bass, exotic melodies and intoxicating vocals - is joined by the now infamous Instrumental Dub version, which has been a staple in Balearic DJs' sets for more than 30 years. If that wasn't enough, there's also a chance to savour to woozy, dub-influenced synth-pop of original bonus cut "Won't Be Your Fool".
Review: To date, Rimini's Duca Bianco has put out just two 7"s, by Cherrystones and Tom Bolas specifically. Now the label widens the net with a various artists 12" that features four disco-not-disco burners for adventurous party people to shake down to like they're in 1980s New York. S&C present "Drug Of A Nation,", a raw, funky garage rock jam embellished with wild synth parts. Tom Bolas brings things to a more Afrodisco flavoured peak with a cheeky famous funk lick and killer robo vocoder. Hanoben / ADSX take things in an Italo direction with 'Dreifaltigkeit" with some incredible vocals to boot. Schmoltz sets things adrift in supreme Balearic style on "Starnight."
I Want You For Myself (KON extended remix) (10:40)
Review: Acclaimed crate-digger turned disco re-editor KON has decided to launch his own reissue imprint, Kontemporary. The idea is simple: to accompany re-mastered original tracks with fresh rubs from the man himself. 12" number one offers another opportunity to enjoy George Duke's soulful, sun-kissed, disco-era jazz-funk bomb "I Want You For Myself". On the A-side you'll find Duke's own impeccable 12" version, with KON's re-edit gracing the B. Having access to the original multi-track tapes has allowed the New York-based producer to not only include an atmospheric, extended intro (a tactic regularly used by fellow rework merchants The Revenge and Joey Negro), but also give more prominence to Duke's superb piano solos.
Review: The mysterious Wilson Phoenix returns with another batch of muscular techno joints that'll wipe the floor with any half-hearted 4/4 pretenders. Considering how sought after his earlier releases are, don't expect this to hang around for long. The beastly 909 kicks on "Dorphin" would slot in perfectly with Head Front Panel's own blown out take on peak time rabble rousing techno, while the kick-clap sync on "Dexed" will get fists a-shaking. It's not all blunt drums though - there's plenty of peppy colour splashed all over this record to make it stand out from the crowd. This ain't no monochrome chugging business!
Review: Original music from Vancouver based producer NAP has been intermittent on the electronic music scene, but now the Isla boss has finally dropped a 12" of deadly, textured and fresh-sounding electro for our bodies and minds. "Transhumano" features ZDBT and has all the hallmarks of Stingray-friendly future shock machine funk, but the particular approach to pads and melodies has a distinctive, moody slant that chimes with the hazy sound of Canada's West Coast. "Anestesia General" is another needlepoint, uptempo workout that packs layer up on layer of darting rhythms and blippy synth lines into the mix. "Sin Sistema" completes the set with a more subdued but no less detailed box jam workout.
Review: Transparent Sound label boss Orson Bramley steps up to his long-standing imprint with a new guise, Empty Orchestra, which showcases yet more of his crafty, delicately executed take on electro. "Nervouse Smile" is an impeccable study of the style, loaded with intricate machine funk elements from twitchy drum programming to ethereal pads, and of course a healthy dose of funk for good measure. As well as the original version, there are additional remixes courtesy of rising stars Acidulant and Alero May, the latter of which has an especially infectious bassline ripple and some smart key change moments for a dynamic end result.
Review: The resurgent Transparent Sound outfit (made up of UK electro veterans Orson Bramley and Martin Brown) have been riding high since their classic "Punk Motherfucker" got picked up for a reissue from Pressure Traxx, finding favour with the Club der Visionaere set. They're back on their own label with a rich and plentiful EP loaded with robotic box jams, leading in with the dark and seductive body popping beatdown "What Is Your Name?". The vocal mix is killer, but there's also the added bonus of an instrumental take for those who prefer a pure machine sound. Acidulant also steps up with a blinding remix that does a great service to the original, threading some seriously nasty synth wriggles and wobbles into the mix.
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: Vincent Floyd is the real deal - he was doing it back in the early 90s on labels as iconic as Dance Mania and Relief, and then after nearly 20 years of silence he came back into the mix around 2014. Since then he's landed on Rush Hour, Dawn Notes and Traxx Underground. This time around he's bringing the dopeness to Astrolife, laying down the understated but utterly engrossing deep house sound he's made his own since the early days on the brilliant "Time Machine". Then it's up to the remixers to do justice to the original - Lola Allen does the most striking job with her gorgeous ambient "Outro" version. Vincent Inc's take is a nifty, sample-juggling affair that manages to maintain the depth of the original, and the Kazarian remix whips up a shuffled groove and heavyweight bass that rocks it raw and righteous.
Review: New York techno mainstay Reade Truth has skirted around widespread recognition with a long-standing commitment to underground techno approaches recognised by those that know as some of the best in the business. This release sees him dust down the first release on his label Path, 20 years after it originally did the business. It's high time tracks like "The Path" that get a fresh airing - the dynamic, detailed approach to drum programming and warm acid undulations sound as relevant now as they did back then. "319" is a more reflective jam that heads into emotive, moody territory that highlights the breadth in Truth's sound, before "Give Me Insanity" round things up by taking it super-deep thanks to expansive pad sweeps and shimmering hats aplenty.
Review: One of disco's biggest divas gets served up on a red hot platter here by Vinylators. "Extended Woman" is eight plus minutes of bubbling, piano laced and string happy disco with the iconic "I'm every woman" vocal taking centre stage over nice clipped drums. It's a tasteful edit that brings all the key parts to the fore. "Piano Woman" is more stripped back, with plenty of emphasis on some busy piano playing and the soaring original vocal left in place up top. "Dub Woman" is more paired back and built on the leggy drums, while plenty of golden strings add real colour.
Review: For his first outing of 2020, Kyle Hall returns to the label he founded last year, Forget The Clock, with a suitably strong five-track missive. Check first languid opener "Shark", a splash around in crystal clear waters where simmering chords, luscious pads and glassy-eyed melodic motifs stretch out over bubbly, Latin-tinged drum machine beats and a dubby bassline. Hall makes bolder strides towards the dancefloor on lo-fi house cut "Vexed", before doffing a cap to Larry Heard and Ron Trent on the gorgeous deep house positivity of "Distant". Elsewhere, "Slam Deep" joins the dots between Steve Poindexter and the 2000 Black style of jazzy broken beat, while "Channel & Transmission" is a skewed skip through wonky deep house/jazz-funk fusion.
Review: To launch their new collaborative imprint Locus, Enzo Siragusa and FUSE have turned to Italian rising star (and INFUSE regular) Koko. The resultant four-tracker ix attractive and ear-catching, with Koko moving from hip-shaking summery deep house swing (the rather lovely chord progressions and drowsy female vocals of "Chantal", featuring Quelle Rox), to the UK garage-goes-deep house warmth of "Amor Ante Hominem Nascitur", via slick smoothness of "Your Ass, My Camel Blue" and the tough, bumpin' chunkiness of revivalist UK garage number "Love In Plexiglass". It's the latter, a pitch-perfect cap-doff to Grant Nelson rich in jazzy bass and dreamy vocal snippets, that hits home hardest.
Review: After making a splash with releases on Twig and Lumbago, Raphael Beneluz brings his classy machine music to Cartulis with the P 12". Things get off to a pumped-up start with the dynamic, detailed thrust of "Xzomet" before the night draws in around the tastefully creepy workout "Darkanethesie". "Hostile Planet" opens up the B-side with more eerie atmospheres and stout box jam beats, and then "System Down" completes the package with another thumping tapestry of nervy acid and old-skool jack. For all the familiar touches, this is music dripping with personality and attitude, bottom-heavy and sure to devastation in the dance, real or virtual.