Review: When it comes to hybrid blends of intoxicating world music sounds and contemporary dancefloor rhythms, few producers are quite as accomplished as Nicola Cruz. He's at it again on "Hybridism", the Equador-based Frenchman's first EP for Multi-Culti for almost three years. Opener "Aima" sets the tone, with Cruz wrapping lilting synth lines, weirdo electronics and chanted vocals around a bubbling electronic groove, while "Naeku" makes the most of echo-laden drums, what sounds like an African children's choir and faintly foreboding acid lines. "Drom Tradisie" is an exercise in trippy sounds and layered percussion, "Third Eye Dub" is a darker and moodier slab of techno-exotica and "Kawe's Dream" is a blissful blast of clarinet-sporting musical positivity.
Review: Multi-Culti has invited us to join their "Calypso Cult", a shadowy musical organization with two named leaders. First to set out their tropical pagan manifesto is Mexican maverick Inigo Vontier. He first layers trippy, dubbed-out spoken word snippets and whistling synth lines atop a chugging arpeggio groove on "Jubile Is OK", before reaching for the hand percussion, dark electronics and weird noises on heavyweight throb-job "Masicka". Fellow cult leading light Thomass Jackson steps up to the podium on side B. His message is a little hazier and more spaced out, with the hypnotic eccentricity that is "El HiHat" being followed by "Naive Song In E Minor", a wonderful combination of undulating melodies, locked-in tropical percussion and feverish Balearic flourishes.
Review: Having set out their stall via a fine first collaborative release on Bordello a Parigi a couple of months back, Mytron and Ofofo pitch up on Multi-Culti. As you'd expect from a label with such a strong track record of multi-cultural musical fusion, much of the EP defies easy categorization. Sure, you'll find a chunk of Italo-influenced electro ("Non-Binary Joys on the Venus Holodeck") and a couple of slabs of madcap disco-funk fusion ("Si Jambo" and "2Tac Onana"), but also a heavyweight slab of low-slung punk-funk/post disco ("Czary Mary"). Oh, and the skewed electro-funk-meets-intergalactic synth pop insanity of "Something for Your Mind", which also boasts some notably brain-melting vocoder action. More, please!
Review: Andi Otto is a talented chap, frequently performing his own hybrid electronic/acoustic compositions with a "sensor-extended cello bow" (known as the "Fello") developed in cahoots with STEM in Amsterdam. Here the Hamburg-based artist continues his exploration of unusual instruments via a first studio album (his third in total) for Multi-Culti. There's much to admire throughout, from the chiming bells and exotic melodic motifs of opener "Gavotte Mantra", and the intoxicating, slo-mo mysticism of "Six (feat. MD Pallavi)", to the clandestine brilliance of "Manu Roto" and Steve Reich-on-an-acid-trip ambient bliss of closer "Sheepbells". For added dancefloor interest, Otto has also included fine reworks by rising star Nicola Cruz and Gomma alumnus Golden Bug.
Review: Irishman Peter Power has become quite a well known figure in Berlin since moving there several years ago and has been one of the figures behind some of the city's now legendary haunts like Kleine Reise (RIP) and the successful Loftus Hall/Bertrams: which has had a great run thus far too. Now the man behind the Ufordia imprint returns with his second outing on Thomas Von Party's Multi Culti, which itself has also made the move to the German capital. Power delves deep into the exotic here, borrowing heavily from African music and getting very atmospheric and esoteric in the process. The life affirming raindance of "Adama Waro" (original mix) is certainly geared for some moments of truth on the dancefloor. Equally spiritual is the traditional percussion based journey of "Mori Baka" (original mix). There's some great remixes by label manager Dreems and Bucharest duo Khidja: the latter's contributions which shine the most, particularly on their balearica infused/Second Summer of Love sounding remix of "Dansakoni".
Review: The second installment of Multi-Culti's Moon Faze Sun Gaze series is a typically psychedelic affair, with an impressive cast of producers delivering a quintet of trippy workouts. Von Party & Dreems join forces to present "Wet Raga", a spaced-out combination of delay-laden drums, space disco electronics, and Eastern mysticism. The ever-reliable Red Axes fuses heavy post-punk bass, with punchy percussion and minimal wave melodies on the excellent "Boosha Gdola", while Dreems go solo on the weirdo acid-electro bubbler "Sine O'The Tymes". Nick Murray and Kris Baha underpin psychedelic disco electronics with the heavyweight throb of house on "Say Something", before Cocolo draws proceedings to a close with the pitched-down shuffle of analogue wobbler "F33lings".