Review: There's much to enjoy about the output of the Kimochi label, not least the bespoke, spray-painted sleeves and their habit of releasing only the deepest, most hypnotic electronic music. Their latest must-have release is another super-limited affair that drifts lazily between ultra-deep cuts shot through with dub-wise rhythms, atmospheric shoegaze motifs, echoing ambient chords and beats straight out of the early '90s ambient techno playbook. It's utterly gorgeous and deliciously hazy, with slow-burn melodies and undulating electronics slowly rising above reverb-laden chords, warm basslines and occasionally skittish rhythms. There's something particularly special about the locked-in drums and hypnotic bassline of "Elljus", but the ambient soundscapes "Heden" and "Inland" are also superb.
Review: Marcel Vogel and Intimate Friends seems to be an equation that always results in vinyl bliss - see last year's inaugural seven inch from the label which had input from Vogel along with Jordan Czamanski, Ruf Dug and other talented friends. Expanding matters to the 12" format for this third release only means there is more room to fill with sonic excellence and Vogel is clearly up to the task. It's a diverse affair with four takes on "Doin' It", with the predominant mood on the A Side soul heavy and dubby on both the original and refix from African Shakedown's Noema. The 12" is fairly ruled by the flipside refix from NY AK however, with the UK producer recasting the original as dusty Detroit influenced house!
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.
Don't Walk Out On Love (Frankie Knuckles club remix) (7:28)
Don't Walk Out On Love (Frankie Knuckles Dream version) (4:08)
Don't Walk Out On Love (Latin remix) (6:21)
Don't Walk Out On Love (radio edit) (4:22)
Review: While the original mixes of Gallifre's Larry Heard co-produced '89 deep house groover were naturally superb, it was always the remix 12" that the majority of DJs reached for. That's because it contained a pair of brilliant Frankie Knuckles remixes in his distinctively luscious, loved-up style. As this timely reissue proves, those reworks have lost none of their allure. Knuckles' "Club Remix", which is built around warm and tactile analogue bass, rich chords and Mondee Oliver's sublime vocal, is undoubtedly the stronger of the two for club plays, though the shorter "Dream Remix", with its rush-inducing ambient sections and nods towards contemporaneous Italian deep house, is arguably even better. Simply essential.
Cody Currie - "As Of Yet" (feat Joel Holmes) (5:09)
Grant Nelson - "In The Dark" (5:59)
Pontchartrain - "Don't Change It Up" (5:43)
Goddard - "Almasti" (6:11)
Review: With such a star-studded line-up of old and new talent involved, it's little surprise to find that De La Groove's fourth vinyl release is seriously good. It's that good, in fact, that there's no space to go into each and every highlight. Instead, we'll point you in the direction of some of our personal favourites. Check first the breezy and soulful US garage revivalism of Art of Tones' impeccable "So Sweet", before turning your attention to the dreamy, vibraphone-laden deep house sexiness of Cody Currie's "As of Yet (featuring Joel Holmes)". Grant Nelson's "In The Dark" is a fine slab of late '90s style UK garage, while Goddard's "Almasti" sounds like a nu-disco era riff on Pepe Bradock deep house classic "Deep Burnt".
Review: Chicago veterans Glenn Underground and Boo Williams are old studio buddies, having first collaborated on vinyl way back in 1995. For their latest hook-up, they've come up with a new joint alias: Guboo. As you'd expect from such experienced and high quality house producers, the three tracks on offer are top notch. They begin with a superb chunk of swinging disco-house, where spacey synth solos, rich chords and select spoken word snippets dance around a killer disco groove. After delivering a chunkier, vocal-free dub of the (track 2), they offer a deeper, more stripped-back interpretation on the flip, allowing greater space for the groove, disco strings and spacey synths to do their thing.
The Rotating Assembly - "Seasons Of My Life" (feat Billy Lo)
Green Pickles - "Feedback" (feat Billy Lo & M Pittman)
Review: Sound Signature kick off the new year with a pleasing reissue of some smoky soul from Theo Parrish's outlet for his most jazzy tendencies. On "Seasons Of My Life" Billy Lo croons over a muted trumpet while a surprisingly rough stomp gets hammered out of a live kit. It's a dreamy, sunkissed jam with all the loose, free-flowing elements you would expect from something with Parrish's stamp on it. Marcellus Pittman helps out on "Feedback", as a sparser, meandering groove does the nasty with some restrained keys. For that Detroit beatdown flavour away from the dancefloor, this is as good as it gets.
Review: This year, Theo Parrish seems to be doing his best to breathe new life into the careers of broken beat-era producers and musicians. Having previously released an excellent EP from Dego and Kaidi Tatham on Sound Signature, his latest missive comes from one-time conscious hip-hop producer Ge ology and one-time go-to jazz keys-man Mark De Clive-Lowe. The latter's brilliant synthesizer and piano work is arguably the highlight of both tracks here. On the spacey, P-funk influenced space-house swing of "Moon Circuitry" he does his best impression of Herbie Hancock, while "Escape On The Lodge Freeway" boasts intricate jazz solos atop a slightly tougher, chunkier deep house groove. Both tracks are, of course, impeccable.
Jerrald James feat Genevieve Marantette - "I Only Have Eyes For You"
Jerrald James - "Vanished"
Review: New from Sound Signature is "I Only Have Eyes For You", from the multi talented percussionist Jerrald James (aka Jerry The Cat). Jerry aptly demonstrates his own production prowess in covering the Flamingos' "I only Have Eyes For You". He smartly chose Genevieve Marantette to provide vocals on this piece, and she gives her best recorded performance to date.
Review: The latest tidy deep house 12" from West Australia's consistent Red Ember Records is the work of producer Pablo Arrangoiz. It's his debut release and as first attempts go, it's pretty tidy. Rich in analogue hardware manipulation and jaunty, jammed-out musical elements, there's more than a little jazz influence amongst the undulating synthesizer basslines and fluid machine percussion. In terms of highlights, we're particularly enjoying the deep, dreamy and bass-heavy electro/deep house fusion of "Formix" and "3MV", though the skewed analogue jazz-house of "Tortilla Flat" and "Sifting" is also tickling our tummies, too.
Review: Promising new label Criminal Practice is based in Kiev, Ukraine and headed up by DJs and producers Ghetto Sunrise, Hopper Field and Roman Khropko. They're certainly aren't messing around on their inaugural release, getting straight down to business in bold fashion. Grec serves up the hypnotic blip, blurp and bleep of "Worm" on the A side, followed by the infectious retro techno bounce of Sasha Zlykh's "Coulda Play For Dynamo" which will appeal to fans of Art Of Dark or Time Passages. On the flip, bust out those robotic dance moves to the sci-fi electro breaks of Hopper Field's "Big Ben" and take a trip down memory lane courtesy of Ghetto Sunrise's early UK techno tribute that is "Mocujin".
Review: Chiwax inaugurate a series of ten planned releases from Mr Spencer Kincy aka Gemini with this timely reissue of one of the producer's most sought after releases. Quite where Kincy has been for the past 12 years or so isn't exactly clear but the potential prospect of some new Gemini material should be salivating for any self proclaimed fan of Chicago house. Traxx Vol 1 features all the tracks from Untitled, the EP Kincy released as Gemini on Cajual back in 1995 though not in the same order as that original pressing. Regardless, the chance to own the brilliant percussion workout that is "Joker" or the mind bending "Psychosis" should not be passed up.
Review: Iranian born and now Ibiza-based scene stalwart Nima Gorji of NG Trax returns to Bondage-Music after nine years to present his first EP. "White Metal Rat EP" boasts a quartet of vinyl-only tech house weapons. We're particularly enjoying the entrancing polyrhythmic groove of "Love You Feel", slinky and seductive late night deepness of "In Da Dessert" and the groovy minimal funk of "Like This", which is perfect mood music for the warm-up or afterhours.