This is excellent from the initial moment the rocking rhythm section begins. Brutal bass feels comfortably at home with the looped quick-fire percussion and surgical Kick drum which cuts just right. Eventually you end up surrounding by strange synthesizers that feel at once warm, yet unnerving on the deceptive, Lighter Shades. Next, Maoss adds space to the production as undulating stabs and shuffling percs create an illuminating landscape. The more typical Techno sounds follow with Athena, while Grounded explores emotive senses again care of grainy, atmospheric keys plus digging bass.
Pulling no punches whatsoever, which is fine by me, Personal Slave not surprisingly sees a return to that time honoured traditional of downright sleaze that used to emanate from the eighties. What’s not love, from the opening commanding Toms which pound out irresistible rhythms straight through to the harsh Acid attitude and vocal dexterity of Charles McCloud’s delirious voice on the self-serving Drum Machine Mix. Next in line comes the Matrixxman Dungeon Dub which explores avenues in Techno, leaving the relatively restrained original to get nasty with probing bass and fizzy electrics.
Vinyl release: 07 April 2017
Digital release: 21 April 2017
Just Her’s striking production strikes at the very heart of why music matters in this day and age. That is to say it engages your mind and soul transforming the world of possibilities on offer to within your grasp. Its expansive, soaring array of sounds capsulate the mood of the moment via its cast of simmering synthesiser notes and brisk drum machines that only serve the introspective vocals faithfully, as it appeared on the labels 20th anniversary compilation. The selection of remixes that follows transforms or transports the original into somewhere else from the tougher more up-tempo rendition provided by Oliver Schories through to The White SHadow’s energy packed remix. However, it’s the deeper reworks that chime best with the vocal and the case in point is certainly Yost’s beautifully atmospheric versions, including a sublime Beatless Mix. Then again Andrea Arcangeli squeezes the emotional pips from the song to the fullest, followed closely by Armonica’s first-rate, bass punctuated remix. Choice.
Danny Ward’s second outing on this imprint bares all the hallmarks of not only his Moodymanc moniker but also employs that finely attuned Jazz ear into this stark reminder of what musicality can be about. Featuring a handful of expert players as you will soon hear opening via Gone with its fine feast of sassy drums, melancholic vocals and unsettling yet thoroughly engaging slices of music, matters then feel all the more Jazzy on Cherries with its blazing Trumpets accompanyed by irresistibly tough filtered dance grooves that almost transport you back to the beautifully black and white 1950’s. A more revealing Dub follows exploring the brassier aspects of the tune, while the very excellent and sumptuously luxurious tones of Mark Francis’ piano led Stunt completes this first rate experience.
There is something delightfully melodic about the way Re-Set develops its loosely structured chords alongside vocalist Pete Josef’s emotive delivery which hints at melancholy and joy all at the same time. An intriguing recipe for sure and the more you listen to this the more impressive and involving it reveals itself to be. It is also the first in a run-up to the release of an album later in 2013 so hopefully there is much more like this in store. The drums sit neatly along classic Electro lines as evocative keyboards add a juicy funk to the rhythm which feels inspired and tastefully accessible, yet clearly forward reaching in scope. The remix comes care of Berliner Hannes Fischer who transforms the song along technological lines with reverberating vocal treatments adding extra, soulful warmth to the haunting synthesizer lines which colour the spaces in-between sublimely on this stunning reworking.
A Midnight Tale (Part 1)
Like kick-ass basslines? Then Costa Ricas’ Mobius Strum has just the ticket in White Disorder. Beginning with unsuspecting beats this then all too quickly announces itself via a succession irresistibly hard-hitting deeper tones. Not a lot else goes on apart from some vocal snippets and the odd sprinkle of atmospheric synth, but then when the rhythm section sizzles with such intensity little else is required. Next, Ocean View proceeds with funkier percussion played out over throbbing bass and occasional chords, again capturing the mood perfectly alongside your attention span. The direct thinking of Kick N’ Snare applies further hypnotic swirls of keyboard to cinematic voices that for some inexplicable reason sound particularly resonate throughout its eight minute timeframe. An excellent release that you would be doing a disservice too by filing anywhere near the reference: minimal.
Yet another distinctive release this week, and quite possibly one the Deep Editions finest moments to date, sees the trio of Keiran Clare, Lloyd Lindo and Francis Seaver deliver a richly, deep production in Ser Mi Dama. It’s all about capturing the mood here which this does so effortlessly by combining atmospheric keys and vocal hints alongside cutting percussion to propel it all. Remixes come from Michelle Owen and Martijn with the former injecting extra energy into the rhythm with heavier bass and punchier chords, the later exploring a moodier Techno feel while also highlighting the expressive vocal aspects again. Second track, Arcapelago is tougher relying on pulsating chords and an invigorating b line to round off this notable release.
release: February 4 Beatport Exclusive / All stores 18th February
Fair to say that this seminal record from Chicken Lips has stood the test of time since its original release some ten years ago. Listen to it and the answer as to why is pretty much self-explanatory. The original version takes pride of place; although the excellent remixes all infuse that bassline with a fresh lease of life by each adding their own distinctive trademark to their reworking. It’s all good as they say, however it’s down to both Groove Armada and Eats Everything to really qualify the track for 2013 with contemporary perspectives. However, having said all that Noir’s Personal Edit of the original is just as hard to beat (with no pun intended).
Ten Story aka Stephen Guy and Dan Gleeson’s debut for the Belfast label continues their defining sound reassuringly so. That is deep, thought provoking House music that’s built to delight a dancefloor as much as it engages with your emotions. Keep On, digs deeper with fuzzy chords and perky hi-hats set against undulating vocal snippets from yesteryear. Simple, yet very clearly effective – just like the video below. Bubba supply the remix easing the tempo and indulging you with funkier rhythms, which immediately satisfy both your mind and soul. Found Out and Time Inside develop the settings with further exploration into the deep as the latter’s moody chord structure and atmospheric vibes prove to be the more tempting.
Second label debut this week sees German artist Rico Puestel’s beautiful melancholy production envelope you in warm layers of looped sound, which pitch themselves together like a dream. From the stirring piano to the edgy beats this intriguing combination of moods is one of the more imaginative this week, and should reflect something movingly ambient right back at you. Plumb The Depths then defies that logic with something more energetic with invigorating piano and a mind of its own, though not quite sure if this just pales in comparison to such a moving composition.
With a pedigree that stretches way back to Chicago and the eighties, it’s about that time for some of the real deal. Taking its cue from that era the music plays across four tracks with the opening, Hold Me by far the most effective with its swirling atmospheres and classic drums feeling vibrant alongside the instantaneous, and just as exciting, bassline. Big Papa follows with shuffling piano and typically pumping Chi-town beats, with Mystic’s sizzling hi-hats and soulful vocal providing a tasteful compliment. You!!! finishes with an exclamation of sweeping sound fx and funky, deep beats which again work effectively.
Pablo Nouvelle’s second self relased single sounds even more stunning with each proceeding listen, and that’s always a good sign. His voice captures the moment perfectly with a deeply soulful refrain that glides elegantly across warm Rhodes and arresting, acoustic guitar. Perhaps it’s just me but I’m thinking along the lines of beautiful beach and sunshine, or night-time and poolside (bar). True To Me, continues in the same vein, and although not quite as strong it still makes you inquire about an albums’ worth of this.
Following urgently on from their superlative Law Of Attraction EP comes this equally great release. With trademark content intact you get more in the way of super-funky bass and crisp, shuffling percussion, plus this time with the added bonus of a ‘Work that body, move that body’ vocal loop to raise the temperature. Miguel Campbell’s remix imagines Imagination’s Ashley Ingram playing bass and of course feels effortlessly funky, while also stripping back the track to reveal yet another killer production. The impressive Fur Coat then get twisted with edgier synths and darker notes alongside some great vocal treatments to finish.
Slok/ Djuma SOundsystem
Lonely Child/ Come Together
My Favorite Robot Records
Two artists, two tracks. First is Italy’s Slok whose Lonely Child (from his 2005 release on SAW Recordings) now features here with this superb remix for My Favorite Robot. Feeling fresh with that smoky vocal remaining thankfully intact the music now gets that bit deeper with haunting and pulsating electronics filling in the spaces. Next Norwegian producer Djuma SOundsystem delivers another cool piece of music with clever, funky drum programming and spacey, vocoder vocals intoning: It’s all gonna come together. Music is such a pleasure.
The debut single from Capetown based producer Yannick Iluga aka Petite Noir is called Till We Ghosts. It’s good, at the very least. Very good, at best. Great video to accompany the booming beats and warped sounds too…shame it fades away so soon…
By taking one idea and running with it Tim Xavier coolly produces another winning formula with looped bells and tripped out voices working their way neatly into oblivion. If you like the sound of that then there’s almost eight minutes worth of these classic vocals and infectious rhythms to contend with on the Main Prime Time Mix. While the Paint The Sky Dub further expands the possibilities with even more delay and reverberation feeling ever more lush and exciting, leaving the actual Dub version to pin it all down with those bells and bliss again.
Second release for Love Fever combines insistent beats and undulating techno stabs to devastating effect, with looped vocals adding a haunting melody to Room Service. Undoubtedly instantly appealing this sounds just perfect the dancefloor. Jimmy Edgar then joins forces on Deeper Touch with a succession of space-aged electronics and trademark House keys sounding vital all over again. You Give Me That Something ends with smoky, soulful vocals intoning the title alongside deep pads while making its point loud and clear.
Layo & Bushwacka!
Dancing in the Dark (remixes)
A taste of what’s in store from their forthcoming autumn album: Rising & Falling sees the release of two remixes but not the original of Dancing In The Dark – although these will certainly do for now. The Guy Gerber & DJ Tennis Remix, as you would expect, twists it all over stunning synthesisers, which alongside the breathy vocals sound hypnotic yet tastefully funky against the bassline. Audiofly deliver irresistibility moody beats and superbly warped bass, while the addictive spoken vocal receives an eerie treatment that really does get under your skin. Either way, this is rather excellent.
Sometimes it’s a case of: right time, right place. Sometimes the music simply fits the occasion. But while I don’t profess to know much about Bossa Nova, judging from this selection of thirty two recordings from the late fifties to the very beginning of the 1960’s I really should do. Thankfully then the sleeve notes go a long way to rebalance that, while the music remains sharp throughout with nothing lasting much longer than two minutes and counting. Described as ‘Revolution with beauty’ Joao Gilberto’s vocals simmer on numbers such as ‘Corcovado’ while guitars blaze on others like Samba de nos dois, moving between the dancefloor and harmony for your heartstrings. Despite the confines of being labelled the genre captures a wide range of sights and sounds, and you would be doing yourself a possible disservice by not trying this out.
can you tell us about the creative process involved with producing your music, such as on the opening track g’s riddem?
always start with drums. make some sounds, then find a bass the weight and sound I like, thats sits well in the mix………eq’ing as i go…….. so i have a firm picture of where i want the track to go, time to start playing with the riddim to add the funk……..finally finding a vocal that adds to the track and sounds interesting. now it’s time to put on down live could be take 1 or 101 as i do it live no sequencers
do you have a favorite piece of software/ hardware that you like to use?
yep my trusty akai mps ltd edtion fully loaded.
how do you see the state of dance music today compared to when you started dj’ing, and specifically has the digital age been an advantage?
dam this is a hard one………………..on one hand it’s easier for folk to make beatz and get them out there….on the other hand there’s no quality control………….also it’s soooo easy know i used to
from your perspective what is the difference between house and techno?
it used to be the tempo and the different no rule sounds in techno but the lines getting very blurry……………it should be just about great music, shouldn’t need a label really.
you can hear all sorts of influences in your music. can you tell us about some of your favorite records before house music?
king tubby,burning spear,steely dan, earth wind and fire, p&p records, philly international, harold budd, fripp, eno, prince,…………….good ballads…could be here all night.
what advice would you give to someone starting out on production?
stay true to yourself and work hard at your art then over time if you persevere you will eventually have a sound ……your own sound, from there on in it becomes easier as folk recognise you by your sound.
Mr G’s second album for Rekids sees the renowned producer continue his trademark theme of smoking beats and funky attitude to supply yet another winning formula. What I love here is the way that the music embraces technology yet retains a distinctly soulful element – State Of Flux couldn’t be a more apt title. Take the first track G’s Riddem which perfectly sums it all up: Thumping kick drums, heavy-duty bass, offset by treated timbale and emotive chords to produce a stunning, uplifting effect. The album then continues to fuse together a range of influences and styles, taking the best cues from House and Techno. From the brutal end of Pumped Up to the twisted Disco of Absurd Beatz No.4 this one journey that you won’t want to get off in a hurry.
The first label compilation for Magda, Troy Pierce and Marc Houle’s Berlin-based label ‘Items & Things’ is fittingly called Variables. Variable in so far as the imprint champions cutting-edge electronic music that’s neither afraid to get deep and nasty, or even comparatively subtle such as on Miro Pajic’s infectious intro: Love Love Love. What follows next is a selection from the aforementioned and the likes of Jimmy Edgar, Tomas More and Andy Martin plus a few newer artists. There’s plenty in the way of hot syncopated Disco action to get into here too, all with Items & Things distinctive twist of course. Try Howard Watson’s, Keep Away and Nyma’s, Brain Crunch plus the beyond comprehension: In The Mirror for size. Satisfaction guaranteed. release: July 13. Mixed CD version by Magda released July 29
Your Feelin’ undoubtedly references synth-pop with its fizzy keyboard lines and restrained European melodies, but also counter balances it all with subtle contemporary pads and punchy beats. And just to drive the point home an Acapella follows so you can judge the vocal for yourself, although this proves to be something quietly addictive the more you hear it. Title track, Kisses sounds more like what you would expect with deeper, moodier sounds playing off against intriguing vocals, and this time comes in vocal and instrumental versions.
The second release from Holic Trax sees Tuccillo deliver the title track House 19 in a blaze of House flavoured Techno that seeks to capture the spirit of 1988, and quite frankly succeeds – smiling faces all round. Eves Sky is next and gets deeper with provocative drums and deliciously moody bass, while teasing you with haunting voices and a killer arrangement. PercussHolic then invites into you into a creative play on instrumentation with its excellent combinations of beats and fiery percussion. These tracks appear on ltd 10” vinyl while the digital release features the added bonus of Dubao, whose addictive electronic rhythms become uplifting in the most pleasing way.
Benjamin Quint and Markus Schwarzbauer aka Bara Bröst deliver their second album for BBE and if you’re not already familiar with their unique sound then prepare yourself now. Quirky, lively and thoroughly excitable the music and words play with each other while seeking to let you in on the party. Having said that, this will either work for you or you may find it all not quite serious enough with titles such as Juicy Lady, My Mess and Tony Curtis (try the soundcloud link below). Despite the eager wordplay there are some fine \House and tech grooves which reveal themselves as on the instrumental Tiger Milk and as with everything else it all boils down to personal taste.
Franck Roger & Mandel Turner Through The Motions Real Tone Records
You may recognise the beats from the eighties but if they’re fresh to you then you can relive the excitement generated for new. Through The Motions goes through anything but that with smooth vocals feeling soulfully refreshing in the summertime, as layers of keys build up the tension on yet another rewarding release from the label. An excellent Dub version pays compliment by stripping back the voice to highlight the cool bassline and hot House groove.
Next single to be lifted from their self titled album Into The Night is accompanied by a typically hot video along with a series of excellent remixes courtesy of Prince Language, CFCF, Nicolas Jaar, Renaissance Man and Seth Troxler, Masomenos & Jaw. All of which you could simply say speaks for itself. Like them or love them, you know this is good already from hearing the album.
Diynamic contains the letters D.I.Y. What is your personal/musical philosophy and who are the people that have inspired it?
Do it yourself is still the philosophy behind everything. Every decision you make is part of your personality and taste, from me or my crew.
Can you tell us about the idea behind the new compilation: Five years of Diynamic and about the charity set to benefit from it?
The idea behind the charity compilation is to give something back. We have been supported by people since the very start and now we think it was time to give something back by donating all the benefits to Kinderhospiz Sternenbrücke, who take care of children who are suffering due to incurable diseases.
What software/ hardware do you like to use when producing music. Are there any favourite instruments you use?
I still use logic 7.3 as a working tool. The most important thing is that you’re familiar with any tools you use. There is lots of good stuff, it doesn’t matter if it’s software or hardware.
For me, the last remix I finished is for Luca C & Brigante feat Roisin Murphy, which you will hear soon: I found a great baseline sound on my Nord Stage keyboard. It was elemental part of the track. Besides that I’m very happy about my barefoot speakers.
Can you tell us about how your club Ego is going, and is the scene in Hamburg healthy in 2012?
Ego is going pretty well. Summer season is always difficult for a nightclub, but here in Hamburg we don’t have a great summer, so it’s going pretty well.
What do you use to DJ with? What for you makes a good DJ?
A good DJ is not about the beat matching or adding FX. It’s all about the selection and order of tracks.
What would say are the positive/ negative aspects to Dance culture today?
First of all, we have a dance culture almost everywhere which I find is very positive. I think that our existing dance culture is very unforced. When visiting a club with good House music you can really let yourself go and nobody will blame you for that. Unfortunately it has become much harder to go for it and organize events, because everything has to pass these strict rules and laws.
Outside of dance music who do you listen to?
Currently nothing. But when I’m driving I like to listen to classic radio.
Solomun plays Diynamic Neon Nights @ Sankeys Ibiza every Tuesday from 10 July to 11 September. Solomun’s ‘Watergate 11’ is out now. ‘5 Years of Diynamic’ is out on July 16.