Fusing together the elements that have made House Music just as vital and exciting now as then is this explosive number from Ricardo Baez. So let’s break it all down to bare essentials: pounding kick drums, smouldering basslines, nagging synthesizers plus neatly addictive voices all compound the formula perfectly. Add to that a remix from legendary Chicago figure Tyree Cooper who proceeds to excite the rhythms still further amid punchier drums and a serious sense of urgency, and this adds up to yet another killer release from MFF.
Spanning delicate melodies evolving from Camille Safiya the producers elegantly highlight the power of voice via a punctuating, atmospheric array of instrumentation. This is simply a great track proving to be timely and beyond merely functional. And you realise that before mid-point. Next, and all of the differing takes are equally excellent, Serge Devant’s Floor Cut version adds a touch of sparkle igniting dancefloor possibilities, while Reboot’s ‘Kadaitcha Man’ Rework does like-wise. As does Art Department whose blissfully pounding Modular Perspective Remix does all of that and more, leaving his Jaded Perspective version feeling the total opposite with funkier drums and heightening tension getting relieved by the warm rush of melodic pads.
Release: June 23
As Buzzcocks once sang: Nostalgia. Dreams are afloat and you can dive headlong into this epic, expansive trip down memory lane. Beginning at the (almost) point of Punk Rock with Buzzcocks Spiral Scratch EP (still got mine) this selection co-hosted by the indispensable Manchester music archive MDMA gets seriously disorientating by the breadth of records on offer here across several CD’s. Indeed it might be a smart idea to explore the site as the sounds unfold to add a visual context. This brilliantly realised sequence – yes the time worn Factory legends are present (as always) – but this compilation impressively digs much deeper to reveal inclusions from people you’ve never heard of, evoking a riotous celebration of colour. As the title says its ‘Independent’ music from 1977 through to 1993 – not sure why it ends there, maybe there simply wasn’t room for an eighth! And all sorts of my personal favourites from the era are present from Magazine: The Light Pours Out Of Me, Joy Division: She’s Lost Control and so on. But also music from the next decade’s Dance and then House explosion with Quando Quango’s Love Tempo plus 52nd Street’s Cool As Ice and A Certain Ratio predating T-Coy: Carino and of course Gerald’s: Voodoo Ray. The list then delivers more typically ‘Indie’ sounds via James, Happy Mondays and the rest providing all sorts of reasons for you to investigate further. In ways you should just ignore this review and go look at the tracklist for yourself, as when is it not a delight to hear The Fall’s speedy Rowche Rumble or indeed music by the Durutti Column. When they said: Nostalgia ain’t what it used to be, they were dead right.
If the title alone isn’t enough to get readers of Magazine Sixty elevated in anticipation I don’t know what else might be. This brilliantly enjoyable romp through music that defined its own space outside of American R&B veers between the charming synthesized melodies of Party Talk by André De Koning right down to Front 242’s pulsating, caustic Principles. Expansive sleeve notes come from Dave Henderson who fills in all the necessary details but for now this 4 CD set is a must. Relish the challenging Godot Was Here by Human Flesh or the more unforgiving electricity generated by Diseño Corbusier – Flanco Dama. Either way this selection will both entertain and then toy with ideas of what is deemed acceptable, Art and perhaps another word beginning with A, proving that life and provocative music existed in forgotten, far-flung corners (until now). Besides which, Glue Head by the fantastic Yello is to found here.
And this is precisely why I love this label. It can release music of such tranquil, melancholy perfectly realised for the moment like this, then by the next breath pulverising, brutal structures. Zeb Wayne returns to the fold with this emotionally drenched blend of dramatically enriched vocals care of Ziwi plus an amalgamation of finely tuned musical (as in musical) expression that encompasses everything from piano to pulsating machines and real drums. Originally from 2016 none-the-less as songs go this is still a joy. The new remixes then translate other aspects into being beginning with co-writer for the score of The Revenant, Alva Noto who injects more tense atmospheres into the equation. Leaving Calibre to sequence dancefloor sensibilities alongside irrepressible rhythms into his version, while Radio Slave re-imagines it all via syncopated beats and percussion plus bass amid splashes of vocal across some ten minutes of persuasive anticipation.
Release: July 14
The second instalment from Cari Golden’s sizzling label sees Los Angles producer Translucent deliver music that is high on life, high on feeling. Featuring the yearning vocals of Frankie Diaz whose heavily treated expressions underpin this series of blistering Acid infused rhythms notably. Love the sheer audacity of this unforgiving yet thoroughly funky exploration of pounding kicks, brisk hi-hats and general rowdiness, all delivered via a sense of panache and crisp lyrical intent.
A La House Music. Which in this case sees Doc Martin not so gently fuse incendiary vocals together with deliciously, pounding kick drums plus insistent percussion and heavy hints of Acid, alongside a classic old-time Chicago styled bassline primmed to full effect. Coming complete with absolutely zero airy, elongated breakdowns this remains at fever pitch pretty much throughout. Remixes are from the excellent Joeski whose self-explanatory On Acid Mix delivers the smouldering, treated vocals to a serious injection of Acid attitude, and finally from Mikey Lion & Lee Reynolds Still Trippin’ version which again reworks the elements retaining energy levels all the way down.
As featured on Ben Hoo’s forthcoming Ibiza Mix for the label and feeling hot very much in its own right is this smoky, temptingly deep production from the trio. The answer to the question is to be found somewhere inside the layers of moody atmospheres that combine intensely across dark, brooding drums plus occasional voices to nudge you in the right direction. Never short on anticipation, Acid doesn’t so much peak as ride the intensity for the duration.
Release: June 23
As debuts go. This is unequivocally s**t hot. Smokey, rebellious while not afraid to tear at the edges of sound with its grainy, dark synthesizers Stimmhalt’s initial release for the label contrasts it all with some timely, rather sublime percussion adding a sense of soulful, funkiness to the arrangement. Evolving over some eight minutes and ending up with soaring, improvised instrumentation breathing bliss this is yet another standout from the label. Which, in this instance comes with a tougher rendition from Pezzner whose undulating sequences are things of compelling beauty.
Release: June 16
Been very much looking forward to reviewing this. It races well beyond my usual tempo gauge and I love it all the more for it. Originally released in the year 2000 My Sunday Love now receives fast and loose treatments care off a host of remixes. By the way the looped insanity of the original still sounds as deliciously vibrant as ever! First up, is label owner Ilario Liburni’s Tarsier version which eases down the pace while adding all sorts of funky, treated mannerisms that both excite and tease out the possibilities still further, retaining and expanding the originals riff. As does Dan Ghenacia & Chris Carrier’s supremely tasty Dub, leaving tINIs seriously excellent Born In The 80ies Reinterpretation to re-imagine the decade via a series of pulsating kicks plus a fiery reworking of the signature keys. And all are Highly Recommended.
Release: June 23