I wasn’t quite expecting this most welcome blast of cool, syncopated European Hi-Nrg to hit my airstream but the EP’s excellent title track introduces itself in a big way. Beyond the grinding bassline and sassy drums are lots of more subtle, striking, imaginative sounds and ideas all positively brimming with possibilities. This is music to transport you somewhere else, expanding the safe constructs of what plays for a lot of the more formularic releases out there, never mind the fact that it is simply exceptional. Darius Syrossian supplies a remix that inevitably employs a tougher, more robust slant while Kevin Yost plays host to a warmer introduction of percussive rhythms alongside deeper bass on his great version. Which then leaves the remaining two originals; the Acid inspired Love Fool and the sizzling guitar infused Take 4 to complete another cut-above release from both the label and the producer.
Art Of Tones
Elephants & Flies
Lazy Days Recordings
Ludovic Llorca aka Art Of Tones first release on the label comprises three originals plus one dub version. And it’s all too easy for me to say that title track Elephants is a simply outstanding slice of music that cuts the atmosphere it generates with a knife. I’d be intrigued to know what the Elephant reference is, but in the meantime this captivating exploration of tones sees punchy keys and swirling notes feel cinematic and thoughtful against a backdrop of shuffling rhythms and stinking sounds. The Dub tweaks the elements providing something altogether more dancefloor orientated, although doesn’t capture quite the same emotions. Next Myself, My Body has bluesy voices over tougher beats, bass and accompanying strings, while The Right Movement’s intense, jazzy inflections provide yet another reason to pay attention.
Anything Weird EP
Another Darius Syrossian production, time for another killer bassline. I’ll Do Anything does anything but disappoint with its funky Detroit flavoured bass offset by soulful vocals and abrasive yet seductive drums. Straightforward and straight to the point, how could you not like this? The remix is from label heads Leftwing & Kody and they give it a fresh sheen with snare rolls and infectious House riffs complimenting the original perfectly. Second track I’m Not Weird, You’re Just Normal says all that needs to be said as jazzy keys get lost in another slammin’ succession of big time beats completing a great debut for this brand new label.
release: July 22
Don’t know why, but I wasn’t expecting Bonar Bradberry’s vocal to be quite so appealing in such an infectious way, but it is. The title tracks deep, shuffling rhythms underpin it all as the voice intones with a uniquely English quality which provides such a refreshing change here, that of course and that the music’s so hot too. Mario Basanov provides the remix with trademark eighties influences sounding tastefully funky as always, and indeed gives the vocal that extra something. Rollerball doesn’t have the same charm but is none the less is an atmospheric journey through the landscape of European electronics.
release: July 22
F For You
Overground/ Underground? Never mind all that. I’d much rather this deeper, funky number in the charts then most of the rest of it. Lifted from their album and with remixes forthcoming their latest single sees Howard Lawrence on vocals sounding rather fine. Judge it all for yourself….
release: August 18
Hold Your Horses – Expanded Edition
You know that expression: beg, borrow or steal? Well, this is exactly what they were referring to. Time to get very excited!! The history bit reads a little something like this: After scoring major dance classics such as Let No Man Put Asunder in 1977 the group went on to record their second album also in part produced by Norman Harris, but now with the additional magic of Tom Moulton and Thor Baldursson was released in 1979. Not only does it include Let Me Down Easy but also the seminal Love Thang with that ‘gets you every time’ vocal delivery from the trio, and Double Cross which both appear here via various remixes including Larry Levan, Tee Scott and Bobby DJ Guttadaro. Once again there a superlative sleeve notes care off Christian John Wikane whose invaluable reading of history is essential.
Apparently inspired by the music played A.M at the Barcelona club of the same name (flight booked) its music like this which makes it all worthwhile. Shuffling percussion sets you up for the launch of one an almighty kick drum and is followed by possibly the best bassline I’ve heard all month! Again there are plenty of classic House music references to be had from the perky piano chords to the somewhat unsubtle ‘Can you feel it’ vocal to keep you hooked. Darius Syrossian then retains the bass, adds crisp hats and clap, plus a killer arrangement that works the piano to distraction. What else is there to be said, great remix. 9
Excellent debut from Manchester’s Jini Cowen and if this is anything to go by…
Opening track, Canyon is simply stunning with the deep bass combining with dreamy synths and atmospheric swirls to evoke somewhere between melancholy and ecstasy. An original piece of music for sure which is followed by the more dance floor orientated, Into The Deep and again has shimmering electronics conjure up future/ retro moods perfectly. The notable thing here is the organic feel to the music which doesn’t feel either too static or overly programmed. Plucker adds melody to the fuzziness and haunting notes while, Space Guitar rounds off with creative percussion and yet more juicy bass. 9
Available on Beatport August 29