Roger Van Lunteren - "On And Dna No (The Sun Riser)" (5:06)
Phil Gerus - "Prelude To Love" (4:37)
Review: The XXX crew are on a mission to celebrate the adventurous and utterly well-informed dance music scene of Amsterdam, and they move to the fourth release on their label with a strong cast of characters that all have something different to say. Alterleo opens up the 12" with the low-throbbing psyche out of "Train To..." before Al Gobi takes over with the aqueous hardware house bubbles of "Rule Of Three". On the B side, Jack Pattern & John Parsley work together to lay down a fierce blend of industrial and disco that will send shivers down your spine. Roger Van Lunteren meanwhile revels in the squelchiest kind of esoteric acid with a new age mystique thrown in for good measure, and then Phil Gerus provides a soothing soliloquy to finish this distinctive record off.
Review: Lost In Time has laid down some killer 12"s to date from the likes of Ralph Lawson and Tuccillo, and now they welcome London-based scene staple Alex Arnout to the label with an on-point EP of explorative house music variations. "No Borders" features long time US house veteran Jovonn, and the pair whip up a tracky tech house roller with serious percussive pressure and a subtle lick of dub in the mix. "Downtown 500" is a rough and tough, bashy house jam with a fresh drum palette, and by contrast "Riddim" brings a straight up deep house vibe with classic organ licks aplenty, that almost sound like they should be the handiwork of Jovonn as well. "Jam The Dance" finishes the EP off with a twitchy house cut peppered with vocal slices.
Review: Atjazz & Jullian Gomes released their "Big Bad Crazy" album nearly a year ago to wide acclaim, and here is one of the LP's standout tracks which receives a rework from Freerange/Delusions Of Grandeur chief Jimpster. He replaces the sensual late night deepness of the original version of "It's My Time" with a slinky, hypnotic and absolutely mesmerising vibe, awash in shimmering melodies, delay drenched snippets of the original vocals and an absolutely addictive bassline. There's a handy instrumental on the flip too. Braintree's finest delivers the goods once again on this hit that's sure to have wide crossover appeal.
Review: Originally released back in 2018, this collaboration between UK broken beat/nu-jazz pioner Martin Iveson aka Atjazz and rising South African deep house star Jullian Gomes was featured on their full length album Big Bad Crazy. The track in focus, "Love Me" in its original form is a glassy-eyed and heartfelt affair, accentuated by immersive dub chords and powerful symphonic arrangement. It gets the Kaytronik treatment on this 12", and if the name sounds familiar that's because it's the alias of legendary Baltimore producer Karizma. A side houses the stripped down and hypnotic "Kaytronik Difibrillator Dub" that works those orchestral sounds really well against dusty barebones rhythms, while "Kaytronik Difibrillator Beats" on the flip sees him serve up a handy and functional bass-driven dub for DJ use.
Review: Atjazz chief Martin Iveson teams up with South African producer and label staple Jullian Gomes for a collection of sublime hi-tech soul expressions on the second part of the Big Bad Crazy album. It follows on five years after their exceptional debut collaboration The Gift The Curse and 'points out the broken state of our world, and .. the ongoing struggle to make it through the pain.' Indeed, they're all emotive offerings here: from the life-affirming daydream fantasy of "Decoded", the perfect chord progressions on "Don Esquire" (sure to get everybody's hands in the air) right through to the mysterious dancefloor drama of "Love Me". Here's to hoping it's not another five years before the pair choose to collaborate once more.
Review: It's been six years since Martin "Atjazz" Iveson started mentoring South African producer Jullian Gomes, and five since they last released any collaborative material. Perhaps they shouldn't have left it so long, because the material showcased here is exceptionally good. The standout for us is undoubtedly breezy soulful deep house jam "It's My Time", though EP opener "Daggers Drawn", a suitably symphonic and musically complex cut that pairs atmospheric orchestration and electronics with a snappy, tech-house beat, is almost as inspired. Elsewhere, "Blow By Blow" is a spacey and woozy number rich in broken house beats, and "The Pursuit" is a swinging, triple time workout that draws heavily on Gomes' South African heritage.
Review: Battista, John Swing and EMG's first hook-up under the SPS moniker - the thrillingly hard-to-pigeonhole Sintomi Di Gravita 12" - was arguably one of 2014's most slept-on records. Here they join forces for round two, delivering another two tracks that neatly sidestep the accepted norms of house and techno. A-side "Movimento (Consico Mix)" is a wonky chunk of well-swung, jazz-flecked deep house, smothered in filters and tipsy chords. Flip for the Inconsico Mix of the same track, a brilliantly far-out fusion of odd electronics, glitchy rhythms, shimmering synths and bubbling found sounds. It's hardly dancefloor-centric, but it's certainly really, really good.
Review: The second volume of Bushwick Is Melting features original unreleased material by Brooklyn-based producers Black Meteoric Star, Lorna Dune, and J. Slusher. Gavin Russom apparently has a new Black Meteoric Start LP on the way and we can't wait based on the epic, sweeping grandness that is the 18 minute A-side hogger "Unearthed Arcana" which is quite hypnotic when in full flight. The B-side finds Lorna Dune putting her experiments with the piano to one side to focus on some celestial house moves with "Reflux" which will appeal to fans of Legowelt's more star gazing moments whilst the wonderfully named J. Slusher closes out the record with the face melting techno cut "Night Train".
Review: Blind Box heads Julien Sandre and Konstress know a thing or two about deep, undulating house grooves, and their continued exploration of immersive cuts for hidden corners of the dance yields further delights on this sixth instalment in the Blind Box series. The first side of this 12" finds the two label bosses twisting out immaculate jams shot through with playful sound design. "Would" locks into a subtle swing and revels in lopsided synth stabs, while "Hedone" plunges into a stunning intricate techno landscape peppered with glitchy tones. On the flip, Julian Alexander follows suit with the crisp, funky "Baku Man" and the more experimental tones of "Casserole".
Body In The Thames - "Silver Threaded Crystal Beads" (6:02)
Peach - "Silky" (7:13)
Jay - "Balsam Drum" (6:30)
Webstarr - "The Muse" (7:02)
Review: Midland's Graded launches a new diffusion imprint: Intergraded. Featured here are four cuts from emerging producers. With Graded now focusing on the label boss's solo work and ReGraded catering to a different style altogether - the logical progression was to start a new label that could help introduce this music to a wider audience. Body In The Thames kicks things off on the A side - despite the name he's actually Swedish. His track "Silver Threaded Crystal Beads" is an emotive piece that sits somewhere between early Detroit techno and electro, in the vein of the Motor City godfather Juan Atkins. This is followed by the slinky tech house of "Silky" by London's Peach - a sturdy number supported by ethereal elements. On the flip, NTS host Jay (Siren) presents some moody, heads down techno for the late night on "Balsam Drum" while Yorkshire native Webstarr (De Grey/Mistry) goes deep into the afterhours on the darkly hypnotic "The Muse".
Kerri Chandler - "Peace Of Mind" (D'Julz remix) (6:46)
Lafayette - "Better Late Than Never" (Kettama Garage remix) (5:00)
Jiletta Riley - "The Way It Was" (Marquis Hawkes Classic club vocal) (6:57)
Review: There's little better, house-wise at least, than vintage Kerri Chandler productions, though these fresh remixes of tracks by the New York maestro would certainly run them close. German producer Henrik Schwarz steps up first to re-imagine Chandler and Jerome Sydenham's "Powder" as a fluid but hypnotic chunk of building, synthesizer-heavy house in his usual melodic, tech-tinged style, before D'Julz turns in a wonderfully warm, locked-in revision of "Peace of Mind" full of drum machine handclaps, woozy chords and fizzing electronics. Over on side B you'll find a superb Kettama Garage mix of Lafayette's Chandler-produced classic "Better Late Than Never" - think late '90s UK speed garage and you're close - as well as a partoculalry reverential take on Jiletta Riley jam "The Way It Was" by Marquis Hawkes.
Review: Needs (not-for-profit) is a new label that aims to raise awareness about different issues within society with each release. Their first offering highlights the importance of mental wellbeing, with all profits being donated to mental health charity Mind, and calls upon a strong cast of deep house producers to impart the kind of Smallville-friendly sounds that discerning heads should snap up in a heartbeat. Hubie Davison's "I Know" is a melancholic affair with heart-nagging strings, while Johannes Albert injects a little spice into proceedings with a choice breakbeat and some excellent bird song on "Vigilia". DJ Swagger's "21st Century Slow Jam" is a peppy little shuffler with warm acidic bass and a kick ass swing in the beat, and then Bobby Pleasure finishes the record off with the wistful but tech-edged "Cloudspotting".
Review: No violence or fighting talk here, just pure love for innovative dancefloor gold from the heart of Prague. Deejay Astral sets the scene with soft focus breezes and a wonderful bumping subby low-end on "Polygon", Dx2ov gets a little freaky with a super cool spoken word sample, twisting around a wonked beat pattern and warped textures on "Teacher" while Jeals strips things back for a warehouse shattering machine funk meltdown on "Woolan". Finally Jus Jam close the show with two stellar tracks... The misty, loose-footed shuffle of "Y'all Ain't Ready" and the classic 1990 synth bass of "Make Ya Move". Czech it out.
Review: The 3rd outing from Legwork comes from one of our label heads in Lance DeSardi and singer/song writter Jesse Rennix. This one's been a long time in the making, but the final product is well worth the blood, sweat and tears. With a heavy nod to Prescription Records and the 1st & 2nd wave Detriot pioneers, emotion is the order of the day. The heavens await.
Dance With Me (Malik & Javonntte Side By Side dub) (7:50)
Dance With Me (Andy Compton Bristol mix) (8:22)
Dance With Me (Andy Compton dub) (6:18)
Review: When David Armin-Parcells (aka Lafleur) first opened MotorCity Wine back in 2009, it quickly established itself as a premier underground spot for both house and disco deejays as well as the city's prolific jazz artists. Fast forward 8 years and the venue is thriving as one of Detroit's go-to venues, boasting an excessively high quality line up of both house and jazz residents, from Monty Luke and Rick Wilhite, to OG funk brother Dennis Coffey and Ian Finkelstein, to Shigeto and Underground Resistance, to the Hughes/Smith Quintet and B. Williams, to Norm Talley & Carl Craig. After a 3 year residency at MotorCity Wine, Lafleur tapped in Peter Croce of Rocksteady Disco to make the venue's mark outside of the city with a label, highlighting the half house half jazz sound that makes the venue great.
Review: First volume of house tracks picked from the Velocet catalogue, Nail's previous label, which he ran very badly between 1995 and 1997. Most of the unsold, OG copies now lay in his ex-wife's cellar, covered in mushrooms.
300 on clear vinyl, no repress.
Review: Time for a legend session as one of Italy's most respected DJs - Serendipity's Marco Socci - makes his debut on the iconic Skylax imprint with a dream-filled Mr Fingers style vocal soul-burner. Guaranteed to soundtrack the perfect sunset or sunrise, it's complemented by a two killer versions: the filtered mix is a powerful slice of lavish piano-tickled soul while Jason Groove lays down a classic Trax style jam loaded with 808 bass and crisp percussion. Loaded with an acapella, too. This covers every base and beyond.
Review: While the title evokes images of the Uncanny Valley crew getting up to sitcom-style scrapes while bumbling around Germany in a rickety old bus, there's an altogether simpler explanation for the Uncanny Vacation tag. Basically, it's a hook-up between the Dresden label and their pals from Munich's Permanent Vacation imprint, featuring tracks from both camps. Musically, there are plenty of thrills on offer, from the looped deep house-disco of Jacob Korn's "Eieiei" and bodypoppin' electro-meets-classic Italo of DMX Krew's "Astro Logical", to the woozy, almost Balearic analogue deep house of Drvg Culture's winding "See You Again Someday". It's as off-kilter but on-point as you'd expect. We'd still think the bus trip idea is a goer, mind.
Review: The latest release on Nicetraxuk sees Danny Ward share wax space with JCub under his Dubble D alias. Ward is best known as Moodymanc, a long-standing figure in the UK house scene, and he's on especially strong form with "Evans Above," where gorgeous strings and meandering live bass cascade around a journeying beat in mesmerising fashion. For those wanting the same musical delights but in a more club ready format, the subtly fired-up "Club Dub" on the flip should be just the ticket. Meanwhile JCub's "Mestizo Beats" reappears after an outing on the last Nicetraxuk release, this time remixed by deeper-than-deep stalwart Tony Lionni with scintillating results.
Review: The 4th and final part of Hudd Traxx 10th Anniversary series comes from Ekkohaus, Mihai Popoviciu, Rio Padice & JT Donaldson. Previous parts featured tracks from the likes of Chez Damier, Agnes, Iron Curtis & Luna City Express. Part 4 keeps the high standards that Hudd have set and Ekkohaus steps up to open proceedings. 'Modest Fun' is a peak time house cut with a big sub bass, shuffling hats and lush keys to boot. Mihai Popoviciu's 'Two Minutes Ago' plays a hypnotic Xylophone hook mixed with the dreamy vocal chant of 'Don't stop, let's go' to round off the 'Now' side in a classy fashion. Rio Padice & JT Donaldson close out the EP on the 'Then' side being 2 of the label's biggest sellers to date. Hudd Traxx have been swamped with requests for a repress of Rio Padice's 'Dirty Belvedere' so it was a no brainer for this to make the cut. JT Donaldson's 'Just Bounce' was played by any DJ worth their salt in 2009, and it's clear to see why, as once you've listened once, it goes on repeat a good few times. A great way to close out this 4 Part 10th Anniversary series.
Review: Interesting things appear to be happening at base camp ClekClekBoom on the evidence of recent releases from Jean Nipon, Chaos In The CDB, and those Fred P and Chevel refixes of French Fries. The mutant brand of bass, techno, ghetto flavours and more that has characterised the Paris label seemed to have taken new shape on those records and continues here with this Various Cuts 12". French Fries teams up with NS DOS for the percussive burn of "8 Hours From Nation" which pulls from Chicago House and NYC ballroom but pushes in all new directions. From here CCB regular Aleqs NOTAL provides perhaps the deepest cut to appear on the label with "Mare Imb" whilst there are shades of Kassem Mosse in Jean Nipon's excellent "Cause Of Action". A label newcomer rounds out the 12" in style with Dutch producer Barbara Ford instigating a mesmerizing exploration of ocean deep acid in "Frostbite".
I'll Take You There (Directors cut Classic Signature remix) (7:48)
I'll Take You There (Dimitri From Paris re-edit) (7:48)
I'll Take You There (The Shapeshifters remix) (7:42)
Review: Back in 2011, Frankie Knuckles and Eric Kupper debuted their Director's Cut project by teaming up with old pal Jamie Principle on "I'll Take You There". Here it gets the reissue treatment, with a trio of classic mixes being joined by a fresh revision from scalpel maestro Moplen. His version is delicious, with Principle's loved-up vocal rising above bubbly synth-bass, evocative organ lines, swirling synthesizer motifs and sunrise chords. There's another chance to enjoy Director's Cut's own warm and glassy-eyed "Signature Remix", a second spin for Dimitri From Paris's slightly breezier (but no less loved-up) re-edit and a boisterous funky house rework from the Shapeshifters that some may have missed first time around.
Set Your Mind To It (Mr Fingers Jazzy instrumental) (7:13)
Set Your Mind To It (radio vocal) (3:12)
Set Your Mind To It (Gallifre Drums & club) (9:51)
Set Your Mind To It (Winelight instrumental) (3:22)
Review: Quintessential Chicago deep house; Brett Wilcots' last release as Gallifre landed in 1990 and came with a sublime Mr Fingers edit. Reissued for the first time ever, the whole EP surges with soul and feeling as we're treated to versions for every occasion. Fingers gets his jazz on with a hypnotic, slightly dubby take (and an arousing sax solo), Gallifre provides a powerful percussion heavy dancefloor twist and a peppy original that really brings Jimmie Lee's vocals to life while the Winelight mix adds a soft sunset filter for a sensual finale. Timeless.