Ed Ed & Petja Virikko - "Sundroina" (feat Jinadu - Jimi Jules remix) (7:18)
Review: Zurich based DJ and producer Jimi Jules is one of the most promising upcoming artists within the international underground. With previous releases on top labels like Superfriends, Cocoon and local imprint Zukunft - he tops all that by being picked as selector for esteemed Berlin institution Watergate's 24th mix album. Here we get treated to a few exclusives from the mix on special vinyl format: on the first side we have Jules & Jesaya's +4 BPM Update of Ame's "119 BPM", there's also his collaboration with Domenico Ferrari on the sleazy lo-slung pop of "Parkuhr". On the flip, we soon discover its almost entirely a Jimi Jules affair (naturlich!) with his remix of Swiss/German duo Egopusher's "Flake" (venturing into truly sublime territory) and the dreamy and bittersweet tones of Ed Ed & Petja Virikko's "Sundroina" (feat Jinadu).
Review: Crew love is true love: Beste Freunde 05 is upon us and it's not likely to hang around. Once again it's a whole new collective of like-minded souls together for a fresh expedition. Anil Aras leads the mission with a rippling Detroitian understated number simply called "Track 1". He's flanked by Paolo Rocco and Moises. The former ups the temperature and gets us in a lather with the insistent pace of "Ill" while the latter sooths our souls and oils our joints with the slippery hypnosis session "Easy Beauty". Finally Esposito & Nadje run point with the heaviest tool of the trip - the bubbling technoid "HBP". Friends till the end!
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: You should know by now that Plastik People is the go-to spot for the most upfront garage house done in a classic style, and they're spelling it out good and proper with The Sound Of Garage House. Marc Cotterell leads the way with the jazzy vibes and deliciously liquid chords of "Those Days" before Ed The Spread brings a nagging shuffle and sharp string stabs to hard-stepping bumper "The Bauhaus Movement". Grant Nelson keeps things tuff with the natty piano hooks and diva slices of "Move Close" while Rocket Dubz ups the funk to 11 for hands in the air party starter "Dirty Bath".
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.
Henry Hyde - "Every Day's A Good Day For A Swim" (6:18)
Review: The ever-charitable Needs project continues apace with another stunning cast of characters offering up their dancefloor creations to help a good cause - the environmentally-focused Cool Earth NGO. On this 12", Eris Drew delivers the uplifting breakbeat celebration of "See You In Snow", while Edward takes things deeper with the tripped out minimal house groove of "Mind Loop". D. Tiffany brings a particularly crafty approach to her own drum funk science on "Sun Trip" and Henry Hyde cools things down with the mellow, new age 2 step stylings of "Every Day's A Good Day For A Swim."
Review: Earlier this year, Mark E returned to the re-edit scene in which he made his name with the first E Versions 12". For those who remember his brilliant early work on Jisco Music and Golf Channel - all hypnotic disco loops and slow-house attitude - it was something of a surprise treat. Here he delivers more clandestine reworks in a similar vein, delivering two deliciously hypnotic, drawn-out grooves that transform familiar favourites into wide-eyed Balearic chuggers. "Magazine" is particularly potent since it slows down and smacks out Madonna's "Vogue", in the process turning the track into a creeping endorphin blast of epic proportions. "Xam" ups the tempo slightly, building the action around baggy accordion samples and rising and falling melodies.
Review: Fresh from a fine vinyl debut on Let's Go Swimming, William Earl pops up on freshly minted label Cherub. There's much to admire here, too, not least the fluttering, sunrise-ready melodies, dreamy chords and rolling deep house grooves of opener "Figure of Skate". Doppelate doffs a cap to the Vancouver style of new age deepness on his fine remix of the same track, before Earl serves up a "Stokey Waltz". This hot-stepping concoction packs a punch thanks to its loose and sweaty drum machine programming and some trippy, effects-laden vocal samples. Pepe remixes, craftily combining the futurist sonics and farsighted ethos of Detroit with the drifting melodic warmth of vintage Italian dream house.
Review: Long-time collaborators Earth Trax & Newborn Jr collide once again for another London/Polish lesson in house music rudiments. Bumping with a classic 1990 feel but 2019 muscle, "Truth" hits home in two different ways; the big room hooky crossover vibe (Main Street remix) and a deeper, acid-tinged introspective twist (Back Alley mix). Flip for two more blasts of foundation magic; "Old Way, New Way" hits with classic synth-pipes and Mr Fingers dreaminess while "And Then" closes the show with a wry Balearic head nod. Turns out you can handle the "Truth".
Review: Prolific producer and sometime Eastenderz label chief East End Dubs is back with two more top-notch tools for discerning tech-house DJs. A-side "Spells" is a bouncy roller: a smooth, groove-based excursion where deep and spacey chords and riffs wrap themselves around a restless, locked-in, early morning rhythm track. Flipside "Ruby" is altogether moodier, crunchier and low-slung in feel, with creeper electronic loops, pulsing chords and crackling textures rising above a snappier, Parisian-style tech-house rhythm track. While a little bolder percussively, it's just as hypnotic and gently mind-altering as its predecessor. If you're looking for some sturdy, mid-set material, this EP is well worth checking.
Review: Having built his reputation via a regular series of self-released 12" singles, East End Dubs is now beginning to make guest appearances on selected labels. Here he pops up on the long established, vinyl-only INFUSE imprint with a trio of club-ready concoctions. On the A-side you'll find "Gradual Steps", a rolling and attractive fusion of bouncy deep house drums, spacey, Motor City chord, thickset bass and glitchy tech-house flourishes. As usual, there's a wonderful swing to his drums and the stretched-out chords are hazy and evocative. You'll find more of these sumptuous pads and chord progressions on similarly-minded flipside cut "Mind Traps", while closer "Enhance" is another deep house/tech-house hybrid blessed with a notably epic breakdown.
Review: Debuts all round as young Swiss producer Ecar makes his bow on the freshly minted Royalties Rates Recordings label. It's an EP that not only shows great promise, but also contains a string of club-ready jams. He's in re-edit mode on the A-side, putting a house rocket underneath and woozy, synth-laden disco jam ("Diana", whose cascading synth solos are sublime), before delivering a throbbing, pitched-up version of a Quincy Jones produced electrofunk slammer. On the flip, you'll find more bustling, synth-heavy peak-time fare in the shape of acid-flecked stomper "Untitled Wave" and a wide-eyed, piano-sporting anthem seemingly inspired by rave-era warehouse jams.
Review: Edanticonf has been a mainstay of Silent Season for many years now, first delivering an album and EP to the Canadian label back in 2012. Since then he's travelled to labels such as M_REC, Wolfskuil, Phorma and Linear Movement, but he's back home to roost with this gorgeous four-tracker that plays on his trademark sound. Rich with melancholic synth work and moving with a purposeful but thoughtful pace, this is exactly the kind of evocative techno that makes Silent Season a buy on sight label. Every track tells its own story, but the starry twinkle of "The Metamorphosis Of Plants" is especially captivating.
Sleazy McQueen & Vinyl Addicted - "Hot To Trot" (5:41)
Patchworks - "Batracien" (5:08)
Le Blanc - "We Can Fly" (4:40)
Review: Detroit/Houston joint venture Kolour are back with another instalment in the Tale Of Two Cities series - and this is one serious all star cast if we've ever seen it! The creme de la creme of nu-disco appears here, starting with crazy Canadian Eddie C kicking off the A side with the sunny slo-mo antics of "All Time Freak", followed by the one and only Napoleon! Simon Mills throws down some more of his usual sexy and lo-slung grooves on "Over & Done". On the flip, current scene favourite - the Whiskey Disco boss Sleazy McQueen teams up with Vinyl Addicted on a seriously hot edit of an underground classic (to those that know) on "Hot To Trot" while Lyon's Patchworks hands in another similarly 'respectful edit' on the sultry late night blues of "Batracien". Finally they head down under (to Adelaide, Australia that is!) for Le Blanc's funked up disco house jam "We Can Fly".
Review: The Untold Stories shine a light on another lesser known practitioner from the field of adventurous minimal techno. Sebastian Eduardo has been previously spotted on Crosiere Musique and Kommuna Tapes, so you can be assured of his quality, but this EP makes the perfect opportunity to hear just how rich his sound is. "Twelve D Soul Connection" shimmers with deft synth interplay and a dense fabric of crooked percussion. "UI Enhancement" channels the spirit of old-skool micro house to great effect, and then "Lyhne's Death (But The Flowers Are Laughing)" brings a tougher techno undercurrent to the trippy pings and wavy pads that dart around the top of the mix. The whole record is a richly detailed trip well worth your attention.
Review: Edward's graceful take on modern house and techno is a perfect fit for Trelik, and the German producer sounds comfortable as he unfurls swooning threads of otherworldly music for the tripped out dancefloor. The "Ogermania Mx" of "Mikko" is a hazy, string soaked affair pitched somewhere warm and dreamlike, but there's plenty of energy churning away in the lower register. "Lottery" is a more twitchy affair for darker times, all moody bass bounce and looming drones around a shuffling set of percussion. "Groaning Ghosts" is the techiest of the bunch, and there's a whole lot of freaked out sound design swirling around in the mix as well. This is simply stunning, highly advanced dance music from a modern day maestro.
Review: We have seen some pretty inventive remixes and mashups on the new EEE imprint, but this could well be the most exciting yet. Once again it's another hand stamped one-sided vinyl on offer, featuring a groovy minimal/tech-house arrangement with vocal samples of one certain pop princess - namely one of her very famous hits of yesteryear. The artist behind it, as always, is being kept under wraps but there's no hiding the fact that this is some seriously heavyweight club ready business.
Review: The shadowy EEE series has already brought us tasty and much-played tech-house interpretations of a familiar jazz-house gem and a string-laden '80s synth-pop shuffler. Their third single-sided affair - as championed by Zip and Riccardo, no less - takes on a much-loved early noughties R&B classic, placing carefully selected and sequenced vocal snippets around a seriously snappy and sub-bass-heavy groove. Although tech-house in style - note the glitchy electronic noises and spacey effects fixed to the beats - the track's infectious rhythm track was clearly influenced by the current electro revival. This added swing and shoulder-swinging looseness, coupled with the familiarity of the vocal elements, makes EEE03 a guaranteed peak-time winner.
Review: The first volume in the mysterious EEE series simply flew off the shelves. It featured a tidy, on-point rework of one of the most celebrated jazz-house records of all time. This time round, the mystery remixer - who seems to prefer subtly beefing up tracks with new beats and one or two new musical elements - sets his or her sights on a classic chunk of moody British synth-pop from Basildon's finest. The new rhythm track sits somewhere between metallic electro and hypnotic tech-house (think clipped, fizzing electronics, and squeezable kick-drum sounds), while much is made of the original synthesizer strings and recognizable vocal. It's a tidy and undeniably floor-friendly version, all told, and will no doubt be very popular with DJs.