Review: Club Quarantane is a 36-hour virtual rave brought to you by RA, YouTube and creatives from all over the electronic music community. It has hosted various online parties with some high class DJ since soon after we all entered lockdown. The results have kept people together while the selectors have served up plenty of sweet musical memories, some of which are now available to keep, forever, in the real world, thanks to this first compilation on vinyl. Assured newcomers like Solid Blake sit next to vital mainstays like Marcel Dettmann for this top notch tech outing.
Review: We all taking up right about now and Yosh is the one to do it. Four crucial cuts flexing around the UKG/breaks axis, all heavily entrenched in the turn of the century breakbeat, dark garage melting pot. Classic vocal samples galore and really punchy drums, highlights include the classic "What I Need" and the pure kick drum militancy of on the title track "Take Me Up". Serious vibes for all ages and all floors.
Review: Following some essential drops from the likes of Etch and Yosh, Vivid welcome Tamoshi into the fold for some sweet and cerebral trips through cut up breaks and moody soundscapes. "Come In" keeps things meditative thanks to harmonious pads lingering in the distance behind the amen chops, while "Check One" has a certain cheekiness not least round the low end. "Five" gets a little breakstep wriggle in its groove, but there's just as much focus on the other old-skool tropes that make up Tamoshi's sound. "Hold Tight" gets further towards 2-step rhythmic accents as it charges forth, sealing the deal on a laser-focused, bassweight record for all the breaks heads to get lively to.
Review: Robert James' BODY MVMT label returns
with its second release. The platform, an
extension of his parties, is centred around
quality electronic music whether it's
techno, deep house, minimal or electro.
On this new EP Rob has curated four
tracks produced by some of his talented
buddies including, Frazer Campbell, North
Phase, LCVA, SIDD and a collaboration
with Jack Michael.
Review: Marco Lazovic has been burning up dancefloors for over four years with his potent blend of house grooves and feisty jungle breakbeats, and so it continues on this new drop for Craft Music. "Dance System" is predominantly shaped out by gorgeous Detroit-inspired synths, but there's also some seriously spicy breaks choppage going off throughout the track. "The Dredwerkz" is a tight and punchy electro jam with plenty of melodic delights fluttering around the 808 drums, while "Daydreaming" gets further up the tempo range to outright ambient jungle a la early Good Looking. "End Theme" stays in jungle mode for an acute exercise in classic rollage.
Review: Simona Drive and Alps 2 are outfits with pedigree: as performers, Simona Drive have toured with Maribou State; as individuals, Alps 2 and Simona Drive have released on 2020 Vision and Fatboy Slim's Southern Fried Records. And as a collective, they've launched Selby Sounds, receiving support from Radio 6 Music. Now, Ad Hoc Records proudly presents Simona Drive and Alps 2 on The Burnt EP, alongside Manchester legend, Goddard, on remix duties.
The Burnt EP is a showcase of ambient mastery - a wistful folktronic collage akin to the mellower stylings of Four Tet, Seb Wildblood and Ross From Friends. Listen for an eternally poised array of mesmeric shuffles and eclectic vocal chops that hint at its creators' genre-skipping technical expertise.
Slipping between states of rhythmic formality (Duck Tape) and freeform soundscapes (Empting), The Burnt EP vibrates on multiple levels. Threads of hip hop and lo-fi house (Burnt) embroider the tracklisting, uncovering a finessed sound that is at once both mellowed and full of intent.
Review: Following his joint drop with Denham Audio, Bristol's Borai fires up the third installment of his Higher Level label with another two precision-tooled rave bombs. Building on a catalogue 10 years deep and a versatile production style that spans deep house, techno, garage and breakbeat, Borai has been busy feeding his heavyweight productions into the scene via his Club Glow project (also with Denham Audio) - first as a mixtape in 2018 and now expanding to encompass events too. As with much of his recent work, HL003 leans heavily on early rave tropes re-figured for flexible assimilation into open-ended, genre-agnostic club music zeitgeist. "Carpet Bagger" has a propulsive 4/4 thrust, but its nightmarish bass drops and stabs are pure darkside. "Sanctuary" (surely shouting out the seminal '90s Milton Keynes spot) takes a sweeter direction - silky smooth chords and diva vocal licks riding over a rolling Hot Pants break. This is classically informed rave tackle given a gleaming finish - heavy in the low end and bright on top for maximum devastation in the dance. Take note too - HL003 also welcomes a new artist into the fold for the sleeve design, Nuff Gal. The Bristol-based illustrator perfectly captures the playful energy of Borai's productions, ushering in a striking new aesthetic for Higher Level.
Metro - "Here For The Love" (Metropolitan Acid mix) (8:19)
Vitess - "133cc" (6:24)
Review: REPRESS ALERT: The third trip out on Nuances De Nuit brings together another killer selection of ear-snagging club cuts that appeal to the deep-digging community. Kolter's "Don't Kill My Groove" has already been drawing plenty of favourable attention from the likes of Moxie with its deft breaks and electro-funk stylings. T. Jacques' "Control" is a peppy tech house jam with a sleek garage bump that should go down a treat with serious heads and passing trade alike. The real treat here though is Metro's "Here For The Love", a seriously in-demand jam from 1994 finally getting the repress treatment to take it out of the hands of the sharks. Vitess completes the package with "133cc", a dynamic wiggler with enough tripped out elements to take out a tank.
Review: Stojche is a Berlin-based veteran of labels ranging from Dogmatik right up to a.r.t.less and Tangible Assets, and he's already had a strong 2020 with drops on Sungate and Grounded In Humanity. Now he comes to Infiltrate with some electro-wired sure shots that keep the tempo up, the synth work bold and the moods intense. "Trauma" rides on rich pads and a harmonious monosynth lead, while "Phobia" takes things freakier with some rapid fire percussion and icy stabs. "Thug Life" keeps the pressure up on the flip, albeit with some dubby melodic flex to temper the rabid beats. "Conflict" completes the set with deep-diving top lines and a decidedly nasty low end squelch you could lose your shoes in.
Review: Back in 2011, Shawn Lee recorded an album in tribute to the legendary Incredible Bongo Band - whose extra-percussive cuts and cover versions played a key role in the early development of hip-hop - under the name the Incredible Tabla Band. Here, two of the more sought-after cuts from the hard-to-find set appear on seven-inch for the first time. Lee's take on "Apache", in which Indian instrumentation, Hammond organ licks and a touch of psych-rock fuzziness are thrown into the mix with incendiary results - is a guaranteed dancefloor hit. That said, his "Tabla Rock" take on "Bongo Rock" is arguably even better, and certainly a little more revolutionary in terms of the sounds you hear. It's naturally rooted in bongo and tabla-powered funk, but attractively veers off script at key moments.
Get Out Of My Way (Retro Roland Riso Eterno Regroove) (3:47)
Review: Earlier in the year, Matasuna Records reissued two rare and exceedingly hard to find tracks by Peruvian band Bossa 70. They'll soon be offering up more original cuts from the band's sought-after debut album, but before then they're treating us to two dancefloor-focused re-edits of Bossa 70 classics by American DJ/producer Retro Roland Riso. On the A-side he delivers a DJ-friendly "Perfecto Edit" of Think, a horn-heavy slab of Peruvian funk rich in rubbery beats and hazy bass. Just as cheery and life affirming is his interpretation of "Get Out Of My Way". This is an altogether heavier, faster and more stomping revision, though it's the vibrancy of the psychedelic era Latin funk backing track that really sets the pulse racing.
Review: Those who love classic Afro-Latin music should already know "Lupita", one of the standout tunes from the sole 1971 album by Belgian composer Nico Gomez (real name Joseph van het Groenewoud) and his Afro-Percussion Inc backing band. That album was reissued a few years back by Mr Bongo; here 'Lupita' is given a rare airing on 7" single by Matasuna. This time round, the deliciously percussive mambo workout - all punchy horns, wild organs and vocal breakdowns - comes backed by a fresh remix courtesy of Bosq. This version is arguably even better, with Bosq wisely choosing to focus on the drums, horns, bass and organs for added dancefloor pleasure.