Listening to Henry Saiz explore the meanings of electronic sound was always going to be an education and this two CD set for the esteemed Balance series proves to be just that. Beginning with a psychedelic reference point the music builds into dark and twisted territory but never loses sight of the funk such as on the excellent Lady in the Mirror. Most of the music has been impressively sculpted by the hand of Saiz with CD one feeling clearly cinematic in scope while the second moves expectantly in the direction of the dancefloor, although even this feels like music beyond itself and steadfastly refuses to sit comfortably in any one genre. Therefore, highly recommended.
Greg Fenton 8
LATE NIGHT LOGIC
Public Records (UK)
This aptly titled compilation from Brighton’s digital Public Records is the labels third to date and once again features a diverse selection of rhythms and sounds from cool Jazzy breaks to sumptuous Deep House. There may not quite be something for everyone on this particular collection but if the word lounge is somewhere you like to reside then these smoky sounds will undoubtedly work just for you. With names like ‘The Psychedelic Squirrel’ and ‘Chiller Twist’ there’s a lot of tastefully atmospheric music going on featuring some expert instrumentation and it’s all been produced with contemporary flair by artist’s the world over.
Greg Fenton 7
Continuing the theme Berlin 13 sees Federico Aubele explore more in the way of smoky atmospheres and imaginative rhythms – the number thirteen is significant in all of this, as of course is Berlin. Meanwhile, his fourth album transports you to a world of possibilities as this cosmopolitan clash of influences lifts and drops moods and tempo’s leaving you with a taste for more. Mysterious vocals and dub infused production values aid the experience while haunting guitar lines and skilful percussion blend perfectly together on the likes of Lagrimas Viejas featuring Natalia Clavier’s delicate melodies, with the off-kilter strains of El Miedo finishing this telling introspection.
Greg Fenton 8
PATIO DE JUEGOS
Breaking out from his native Argentina this album sees Guti blur the boundaries between creative instrumentation and repetitive beats with notable flair and imagination. You’ll love the way classic House and Techno receive fresh inspiration from the almost understated playing at times, which is then coupled with creative arrangements that always seek to throw up something sounding out of the ordinary. Can’t say there’s any filler here but there are a couple of particularly outstanding moments such as when the bass hits you on No Promises via his Ryan Crosson collaboration (amongst a number of significant others) and on the stunning keys played on the tastefully cinematic Still Here.
Greg Fenton 8
Various Artists/ Fred Everything
Five Years Of Lazy Days
Lazy Days Recordings (US)
Listening to Fred Everything’s choice compilation of the past five years proves hard to beat as this impressive array of music flows through a range of styles combining past and present influences perfectly. From the intense dub of Solid Ground to the emotive instrumentation and words of Silk City his sound plays the best soulful elements off a tough electronic production style with perfect precision. You also get the full benefit of a set of great remixes from the likes of Ian Pooley, Crazy P and Greg Wilson to compliment everything.
Greg Fenton 9
AT A DIFFERENT TEMPO
Alphabet Music (US)
You may already be familiar with Tommy Largo via his House productions but this previously unheard selection of Hip-Hop flavoured sequences are equally well worth your attention. What strikes you most about this music is the warmth and intensity with which the instrumentation is replayed over a succession of funky beats with touches of Jazz, Soul, Latin and spaced out elements all playing their part. It would be unfair to highlight particular tracks as the album functions best in its entirety leaving you free to dip in and out at your leisure. File ‘At A Different Tempo’ under soundtrack and it will play the perfect host.
Greg Fenton 8