Bongbeck - "The Robber's Daughter" (Ghiz Retouch) (6:06)
Makebo - "Unknown Beauty" (9:09)
Review: Moscow's Shanti Radio imprint has been on fine form of late, offering up must-check 12s from DSF, Lost Desert, Volen Sentir and many more. Here they offer up their first multi-artist EP of 2019, an undeniably attractive and ear-pleasing affair that effortlessly joins the dots between deep house, tech-house and more percussive tribal flavours. Highlights are plentiful throughout, with our picks including the string-drenched, bittersweet brilliance of Makebo's "Unknown Beauty", the sub-heavy throb of Ghiz's tasty rework of Bongbeck's "The Robber's Daughter" - all rolling hand percussion, insanely weighty bass and picturesque melodic flourishes - and the sunset-ready dancefloor bliss of Cornucopia's impeccable "Nature Boy".
Review: Ovine build on the momentum of their first EP with another new house offering that is beautifully deep. It features two tracks each from Dan Piu and Pohl, and they all hack back to dreamy Italo, classic Mr Fingers and the more pensive Chicago greats. "Depresismatica" is a real highlight with its meandering basslines and infinite cosmic horizons. "Mello Phone" offers more pixelated melodies and busy beats and "Space In The Distance" has the sort of freaky edges and dusty analog textures house lovers always fall for. Already, then, this is a label that is setting a high standard.
Review: Mint Condition is a reissue label doing things properly: unearthing choice cuts from the house and techno spectrum that are not the most obvious, but are always high quality. Enter Deanne Day, a little known project from UK legend Andrew Weatherall in collaboration with David Harrow. It was an alias reserved for club focussed productions back in the mid-nineties and this EP offers up three of their best: the majestic melodic minimalism of "Horicho", the rubbery and driving dub of "Body Control" and the quickened techno funk "Honk (If You've Seen The King)". These are oldies but goldies, make no mistake.
Review: DJ Slyngshot's resurgent Yappin label is back with a second sizzling EP of 2019 after lying dormant from 2014 to 2017. We couldn't be happier about its return when it is unearthing the mind behind deep house like this latest one from Deesigner. Unsettling opener "Bringin The Funk" is a spaced-out late night rhythm with hints of jungle, and "Too Many LFOs" is a lumpy dub cut with muted, woolly synths sending you all gooey inside. "CY-39" cloys things out with some deft drum work and percolating rhythms that are clean, crisp and weirdly pleasing.
Review: It's always a treat to spot Edward donning his Desert Sky guise for another trip into the hinterland of minimal techno, where expression reigns free and all kinds of sound sources tumble into a truly exotic mix. On this album for PAL SL, all bets are off as we get whisked down a mysterious and meandering path where organic and electronic matter merge in the shadows, all strapped to subliminal but pronounced grooves that make this some of the most potent, intriguing club material in circulation right now. Buy the ticket, take the ride and dance out under that Desert Sky.
Review: British artist Desert Sound Colony appears outside of his brilliant Holding Hands imprint here with a new one for Scenic Route - a new London-based label and party run by Bryce's Brother, Jon Phonics and Sean OD. Real name Liam Wachs, his productions have gained support from a wide variety of DJs such as Midland, Raresh, Andrew Weatherall and Lena Willikens, and you can count his new EP "Cartogropher" as another guaranteed dancefloor killer. The A side houses the title track - a fierce, rolling, bass-heavy backroom dub, followed by the trippy and off-kilter UK vibe of "Gypsy Moth (feat. Guava)" plus deep minimalist concentration of "Budapest" on the flip.
Review: The latest Hands Off joint features three artists making waves in intriguing corners of the deep house firmament. Desos opens up the A side with the dreamy groove of "Dubs", before Space Age lays down the classic, Mr Fingers-flavoured haze of "Sunday Rain". Desos returns on the flip with another subtle yet punchy cut, keeping the melodies submerged and sublime on "Jaaa" before Common Mode takes things in a distinctly dubby direction with "Beauty Queens".
Review: Much like its name would suggest, Outofstock's releases are pressed in small amounts for the dedicated Rominimal fans out there - and indeed they believe in quality over quantity. Following up some great releases by local young guns like Audiotheque, Sublee and Timofti, they now present the debut of Deweekend. While information is scarce on this enigmatic producer, we can sure bet they're on to great things if this eponymous EP is anything to go by. The A side houses the rolling, dubby and cavernous tech house action of "Nose Trauma" which is perfect tackle for the main room, followed by the super trippy afterhours thumper "Rabeat". On the flip, they go for more of a minimal house vibe and deeper into the morning hours with the woozy microfunk of "Makes Sensi" and the ultra deep glitchiness of "Re Searching".
Review: Originally active around the turn of the century, Difusion are back in action with a mission to champion real songwriting in the deep house scene. "Playin' With Fire" rides a funky disco groove and works around some seriously catchy vocals, while Daniel Maunick dubs the track out and rides the filter to deadly effect. "Shining" rounds the EP off with a sweet, sensitive jam that strikes the kind of melancholic tone that wistful dancefloor memories are made of. Once again the vocals lift to the track to another stratosphere of heartfelt expression - this is sure to go down a storm with the late summer crowd.
Review: Next up on Acid Pauli and Nico Stojan's Ouie imprint are two veterans of the electronic music scene, but the label bosses are pretty tight lipped about their identity beyond that. Showing off some serious night moves on "Slow Down", the title track is perfect Berlin sunrise material: a lush serving of low-slung techno-pop that makes the perfect summer soundtrack. On remix duties is Lovestruckk, the duo comprising of Stojan and Holmar Filipsson (aka Thugfucker) inject more dancefloor dynamics before closer "Slow Down", a slinky and hypnotic tech house cut moves the EP into a moodier sonic territory.
Review: "Der Say Ah" has long been a banger on dance floors tuned into international sounds. It's the sort of bouncy afrobeat and sax-laced classic that has been fetching huge amounts online. DJs like Gilles Peterson and Nightmare on Wax have been playing it for yonks and now, after many years of it being out of print, it is back courtesy of Push The Fader. The Akoya Re-Rub mix here was mixed by Ben Kane who worked on D'Angelo's Black Messiah, so this sounds beyond good. The 7" version comes from DJ Spinna with extra keys from Ticklah, psyched out bass and extra dub feelings.
Review: Clone is one of the oldest active labels in the game, and DJ Fett Burger has been the most singular soundsmiths in the scene for seemingly as long. This coming together of two giants is another successful one with the Sex Tags co-founder flipping Red Scorpions' "Enjoy This Limousine" into a dubbed out techno roller with jittery snares riding on bleeping electronics. Speckgurtel then tackles "Harpo" with an old school rave energy that is muted yet euphoric, before rounding off with his Drumapella version of "Sonnenambiente", which makes an effective early evening house tool.
Review: No-nonsense German label EXT has gone back to basics here, delivering their first split-artist EP since 2016. DJ Gonzo and Dr Yes handle side A, unfurling a tactile but wonky techno jack-track ("Ring Center") full of jaunty, all action synth-bass, bleeping computer electronics, fluttering synth riffs and clanking drum machine beats that doff a cap to both Chicago jack and Motor City futurism. Rough Thought takes over on side B, charging through a bustling combination of rising and falling intergalactic synth lines, deep space chords, surging arpeggio bass and a drum track so sweaty that it could have been laid down by a drummer who has just downed four cans of the world's most repulsive energy drink.
Review: Berlin deep house stalwart Hans Schaaf aka DJ Honesty is most known for being part of the local Cabinet Records crew, regularly collaborating with ZKY & Daniel Paul over the years. Outside of that, this will be the second time he's appeared on Losoul's Another Picture, following up 2017's "Janeiro" EP with yet more subtle groove magic here. On the A side we have the sublime minimal dub of "Santo Antonio" awash in hypnotic dub effects perfect for setting the vibe at the afterhours. On the flip, we have some jams which are more typical of Schaaf's usual work: the deep boompty swing of "Mais Populares" and the bleepy minimal funk of "Green Door".
Review: The man himself would probably say "it's Ed - Jus Ed that is!". To directly quote the Underground Quality chief himself, the man says he is back as Bridgeport Connecticut's all time champion of house and techno, undefeated since 2001 - and still! The guy sure ain't modest, but we couldn't have said it better. From the smooth and meditative vibe of "Favignana Sunset", to the fierce acid banger "I AM" as well as the brooding and doom-laden dancefloor drama of closer "Impulsive Curves", this is unlike anything we have ever heard from the UQ boss before.
Review: Earlier in the year DJ Seinfeld returned to action with the "Galazy EP", a wonderfully spacey, breakbeat-driven affair that arguably contained some of his most mature and developed productions yet. There's more of the same on the "Lilium EP". The title track boasts serious percussive weight - a result of the producer's layering of bongos and congas above a sturdy kick drum pattern - with a trance-inducing synth bassline, fluid electric piano lines and flowery chords providing the loved-up musical accompaniment. He doffs a cap towards both mid 1980s NYC freestyle and Italo-disco on the Bobby Orlando-influenced brilliance of "Lovejoy", whose drums and synth sounds are impressively authentic in their style and execution, while "Exterrestial" is a pleasingly fluid fusion of breakbeat-driven deep house and late '90s style NYC "dark garage".
Review: New label Nuances de Nuit kick off in fine style with a various artists 12" that draws on some emergent names to lay out a vision of cross-style dance music that favours the deeper end of the pool. Things get going with an organ-rich house bumper from DJ Steaw that pumps in all the right places, before Armless Kid switches things up with an untitled slice of dynamic, richly layered electro. T. Jacques thumps out a crafty, swinging cut with techy inclinations and oodles of groove, and E. Wan takes things in a more linear, deep techno direction laden with gorgeous synth work and plenty of artful effects processing.
Review: Tomoki Tamura and Tuccillo are back together once again as Doublet, with both seasoned tech house champs having fun in the studio jamming out the kind of stripped back, heads down grooves you'd expect to hear them play out. "Tee's 8" is a cheeky A side jam with the kind of acid line that goes down easy and then works you from the inside out. "Three Thousand Men" has a slight dubby thread to it which sits comfortably amongst the sturdy groove of the drums, and then "Tentation" switches gears for a bright and melodic creation that skips around in funky syncopation without even needing to worry about a kick drum.
I Don't Want You Anymore (Dr Packer extended remix) (6:38)
When Love Breaks Down (Dr Packer extended remix) (8:24)
No Price (Dr Packer extended remix) (8:09)
Boogie 2nite (Dr Packer extended remix) (6:55)
Review: Legendary edit master Dr. Packer digs deeper for part three of his "Different Strokes" series and churns out four more tasteful reworks of soul, house and disco classics. His take on The MuthaFunkaz's "I Don't Want You Anymore" is big in every department - bass, instrumentation and vocals as well as The Shapeshifters' "When Love Breaks Down" which gets reworked into a sumptuous vocal disco anthem. Flip over for "No Price" and "Boogie 2nite", both extended remixes that soar to the heavens with plenty of glorious strings and irresistible diva vocals. For lovers of all forms of disco, this is another vital release from scene leaders Packer and Glitterbox.