Blood Moon (Dawl & Sween Tone DropOut remix) (7:17)
Blood Moon (Violet remix) (5:56)
Review: Kim Ann Foxman takes a break from her own Self:Timer label to pop up on [Emotional] Especial. Her track "Blood Moon" hinges around rolling breaks and a globular monosynth bassline, but it's Foxman's vocals that give the track an electric, mystical energy that will cast a spell over the dance. Roza Terenzi takes the original and jacks it up, sharpening the focus of the rhythm section without losing the crunchy breaks. Dawl and Sween channel some bleeps n' breaks vibes of their own with a version that keeps things darkside and wiggy for the old-skool crew. Rounding things off, Violet's remix emphasises the acid as it plunges into the depths of the dungeon in a hooky, hard-edged style.
Review: Harry Wills hail from Frankfurt and is making himself an increasingly vital voice in the tech house scene. His latest floor facing missives are as tight as ever on the new 2XYellow label. "Snap & Crackle" goes first and almost falls over itself it is in such a hurry with its tech funk drums and microcosm of pops, clicks and synth daubs. "Rubix" is built on hefty, hard hitting kicks that are perfectly well swung and come with more tripped out synth details that get right under your skin.
Review: Nobody does tough rolling tackle for the peak time quite like the Audiojack boys. The Leeds-based duo head up the revered Gruuv imprint and have left their indelible mark on The White Isle with their legendary parties. Indeed, their sound is a worthy addition to the Mannheim-based 8bit imprint; Jorge and Nick Curly, like Rial & Birkenshaw themselves, churn out proper tech house that is aimed squarely at the main room. The track in question is "Are We Here", that sees them deliver something a bit more restrained than usual. This is a smooth and euphoric slow burner that's perfect to build up to the bangers in your set, harnessing all that 'energy'. Speaking of which, that's the operative word throughout the B side cut "Higher" with its deep and bass-driven pulsation that's sure to get the sweat dripping from the walls.
Review: Jackmate, the king of off-kilter house, makes a welcome addition to Matthew Herbert's Accidental catalogue - matter of fact his style is right at home! The 'Werk' EP is the Philpot co-chief's first release in six years and he's in fine form as always. From the dry and disjointed shuffle of the title track, to the smooth and sensual deepness of B-side cut "Skeletones" - a Moodymann-ish cut which is perfect mood music for the warm-up or afterhours alike. Closing out the EP is something much more offbeat for the Sunday afternoon slot - the boppy summertime groove of "The Clarinettes' which like its namesake has some irresistible wind instrument action to get you on your feet and shaking your behind.
Review: Since 2013 Tijn (not to be confused with J. Tijn) has been issuing a steady stream of high grade minimal and tech house for labels like Decay, Memoria, Moss Co and more recently Vuew. Now he comes to Aesthetic for a varied EP that leads in with the dusky, blue-hued tones of "Waves" - a moment for true immersion and introspection. By way of contrast, "CC" captures the energy of classic mid 00s minimal a la labels like Cynosure - all bugging samples hopping around a swinging groove - and we can't get enough of it. "Sundayyzz" takes things in a spookier direction, keeping that stripped back shuffle but holding down a more mellow energy compared to "CC".
Review: Lee Burridge's All Day I Dream label continues to roll out the most dreamy and escapist house grooves around. Always tinged with beauty and melancholy in equal measure, this latest offering comes from Argentinian Valdovinos. There is a new age ambiance and yawning architecture to these tunes that takes you out into wide open, sun drenched spaces. There is a real cosmic majestic to "C Moon" that makes it more suited for the after dark hours while "Night Whispers" also gets a little darker and freakier for the trippier moments of a set.
Review: It would be fair to say that Mr Fingers 2016 is something of an event release, at least for those who love deep house. While Larry Heard has kept busy - largely with remixes and reissues - this marks the first 12" release under his most famous moniker for over a decade. He begins in contemplative mood, fusing tumbling music box melodies, creepy electronics and nagging 303 lines on "Outar Acid", before laying down some typically blissful, atmospheric deep house on the wondrous "Qwazars". Flip for "Nodyahead", an effortless mixture of heavy dub-house bottom end, African-influenced percussion and moody late night refrains, and the ultra-deep, piano-laden bliss of "Aether".
Review: Colin Chiddle's Art Of Dark is back with more tripped-out retro techno, following up some great releases of late by the likes of Alec Falconer, Z@P and Santiago Uribe. The 'Mind Control' EP comes from Berlin-based Matthias, who runs Superluminal and co-runs Foundation with Modex. On the A side, we have the bleepy and futuristic banger that is the title track, followed by the strobe-lit energy flash of "The New Dominion". On the flip, the party vibes continue with "Wide Open" hailing 'all aboard the Hoppetosse!', while the acid flashback of "Fatal Crusher" will surely help to get on your tunnel vision. All killer, no filler - tip!
All I Do (Ryuhei The Man 45 edit instrumental) (4:05)
Review: Japanese live outfit, A Hundred Birds has a thing for creating classic covers. Over the course of their career, they've recorded countless covers, including organic, string-laden interpretations of techno scene staples such as "Blackwater" (originally recorded by Octave 8) and "Knights of the Jaguar" (The Aztec Mystic). Last year they offered up another warm and wonderous cover, this time of Stevie Wonder classic "All I Do". Here it gets a new lease of life courtesy of scalpel fiend Ryu The Man, who has delivered tightened-up, floor-friendly vocal and instrumental edits of the warm, rich, soulful and undeniably summery cover version. Both are rather good, though it's the vocal version that will win over dancers.
Review: The Atipic catalogue has certainly grown exponentially in the last couple of years, with some particularly fantastic releases coming from Rominimal scene heroes like Vincentiulian, Vlad Arapasu and Cosmijn. The latest addition comes from Bucharest-based newcomer Florin Serban aka Aparte, who label boss Priku has chosen to present a smashing debut here on "ATIPICLAB 007". Teaming up with fellow debutante Dan Blatov on the sparse and hypnotic Sunday morning vibe of "Guidance", before going solo on the flip with the moody bass-driven groove of "Distant Thunder".
Review: The enigmatic Au Pair imprint resurfaces for its third edition, featuring yet more dusty and understated grooves. On 003, be utterly hypnotised by the deep and woozy boompty business of "An Understanding", while tripped-out grooves that are perfectly engineered for sleep deprived Sunday mornings are catered for on "Nothing Else". The moody B-side cut "Wild In The Isles" is similarly perfect for those moments of solitary paranoia on the dancefloor. Overall, this release will certainly appeal to fans of afterhours minimal house, in the vein of recent releases by 'Rominimal' heroes such as Crihan and G76 - tip!
Review: Labels were queueing up to release Cinthie's high-quality music last year. She kicked off that release spree with a tidy 12" on Aus Music, so it seems fitting that she's returned to Will Saul's label to put out her first EP of 2020. Opener "Bassline" is a deliciously loved-up and saucer-eyed chunk of warehouse-ready retro-futurism - all crusty lo-fi house beats, swelling chords, sweaty vocal snippets and Tuff City Kids-esque piano motifs. "No One Can Take You Away From Me" sees her switch to tactile, melodious and enveloping Italo-disco mode, before devoting the entire B-side to the sunset-ready warmth of "803 Meme Queen", a deliciously melodious affair that explores similar sonic territory to Orbital's rave-era deep house classic "Belfast".
Review: Aze's reissues continue with this latest one from Janeret which actually only came out in early 2018 but sounds effortlessly timeless. "Neptune" gets underway with a far sighted cosmic deep house groove. The keys are soft, the drums delicious. "Abyss" then ups the pace, but stays just as silky and fluid with its rolling final drums and "Atlas" then just things up with a more punchy drum line and busy groove. The trip is completed with the superb "Odyssey", with frictionless drum rotations and balmy, bendy pads all proving irresistible. House music doesn't come more seductive and smooth than this.
Review: Frankfurt producers and DJs Michael Melchner (Omega Men) and Patrick K (Traffic) formerly teamed up on the KMR project with Dario Reimann, but have returned with their sophomore release as a duo here for Berlin-based Blank Slate. "Critical Mass" sounds like pitched-down jungle until that pumping and hypnotic four-to-the-floor groove comes rushing in. This is followed by the tripped-out and funky retro techno of "DUSTWUN". On the flip, the pair take you deep into the afterhours on the woozy minimal techno affair that is "Nazare Swell" and going out all guns blazing on the acid rave frenzy of "Call Me Freddy" which is reminiscent of second wave Detroit techno classics.
Review: We've heard plenty about the underground electronic music scenes in Napoli, Milan and Rome, but not so much about the new wave of deep house and broken beat producers currently emerging from Bologna. This EP from Bristol's Boogie Cafe Records tries to put the record straight by bringing together a quartet of cuts from some of the city's fast-rising producers. Check first the insanely funky, broken house brilliance of Sam Ruffilo's blues-sampling "U Make Me Sing", before bathing in the jazzy solos, drowsy male vocals and jazz-funk-flecked cheekiness of D'Arabia's "Straight Outta Fire". Brine takes over on the flip, first joining forces with Ruffilo on the revivalist '90s NJ garage flex of "Request Line", before going solo on the ultra-deep, woozy and sun-kissed deep house warmth of "Star Chaser".
Review: Ascendant Romanian producer Dinu Pancov aka Suolo continues his prolific output here with his third release for Bucharest-based Capodopere, following up some great ones in recent times on More Than Music, Aforisme and RORA. "No Proof" is totally on point: a deep, groovy and hypnotic roller from a dub techno state of mind and perfect tackle for the afterhours. On the flip, we have the ethereal and mesmerising drifter that is "Rudiment", while "Oasis" is an eerie minimal tech house tool that will appeal to fans of fellow homeboy Sublee, Alci or even Ion Ludwig.
Locossolus - "Next To You" (Kiwi remix - Harvey edit) (7:35)
Apiento & Tepper - "Blossoms" (5:52)
FYI Chris - "SWH (No Boundaries)" (6:53)
Luke Vibert - "That's Ill Folks" (3:37)
Clark - "Laptop Stand" (3:21)
Review: Plenty of big hitters feature on this new various artists collection from Care4Life. It's a Harvey edit of Kiwi that kicks off with a slow, darkened grubby dub disco workout then Apiento & Tepper link for "Blossoms", another deep and dubby cut but with thoughtful pads and icy electro twinges. FYI Chris ups the ante with a warm and atmospheric house cut that carries you away on a spaced out vibe and Luke Vibert gets typically wonky and electric on his playful downbeat jam "That's Ill Folks." The biggest curveball of the lot is Clark's "Laptop Stand", an acoustic guitar piece with a curious folk vocal.