Review: Roots For Bloom hits its tenth release and welcomes Carlos Sanchez & Alex Kaddour to the label. This EP is made for the floor, its no nonsense, groove based house music at its best. Tough basslines drive the A side Black Freddie's Moustache and echoey vocals stab through. On the flip the basslines remain at the forefront of your attention, but this time layered alongside more mysterious synth lines and twisted vocals. With previous releases on the likes of 8Bit and Poker Flat its easy to see why these guys will fit right in at the Roots For Bloom camp.
Review: Ilian Tape continues to be code for "absolutely killing it mate" with the Zenker brothers introducing us and you to the production talents of Sciahri with the Mysterious Love 12". Spend some time with the sound clips here and you'll be hard pushed to believe this is Sciahriar Tavakoli's debut 12" as Sciahri, such is the standard of productions. Tavakoli's stated interest in the loop techno pioneered in 90s era Birmingham is very much evident on a cut like "The Dream Is True" but there's some nice little touches slipped in that give it some true personality such as the spin back in the breakdown. The title cut is a stern faced dubby number that just tunnels and tunnels away, whilst there's a cheeky strut to the way Tavakoli implements the filters on "Mind". The final track "Emblema" is the kind of techno number you want to drop right when everyone has forgotten their names.
Desire (Dilated Pupils Repeat The Vocal remix) (7:26)
Review: Illusion Limited is the limited press sister label to Illusion Recordings. The label will shine light on new artists and sounds not currently represented on Illusion. The first release kicks off with the highly talented Manchester based Artist Seelie who delivers two slices of subtle, classy deep house. This EP has been a while in the making and shows a real development in Seelie's sound from classic house to deep textured and hypnotic house. BLM provides a huge remix on the A side stripping things back and letting the analogue bline and minimaistic drums create a heady, yet dancefloor track. Dilated Pupils provide a unqiue broken beat remix of the hypnotic 'Desire' on the B-side to round things off and kick off this label in style.
Review: REPRESS ALERT!: Serenity is a new label geared towards raising money and awareness around mental health in the music industry. The label kicks off in fine style with the supple, expressive techno of John Shima and Mihail P offering up two tracks each. Shima takes the A side with the warm and bubbling synth expressions of "Seasons" before taking things in a more hypnotic direction on the ever-so-slightly trancey "Hunter Mind". Mihail P maintains a similar vintage techno sound palette, but pings for positive constellations with the jubilant "Momentum" before veering into blissful breakbeat on "Neon Hologarden".
Review: Commencing proceedings on the Construct label comes a release from the newly formed partnership of Kitty Yo artist Richard Davis with perennial tech house champs Swayzak. Their resulting "Shut Me Down" is a distinctive beast laden with pained strings and sultry trumpet lines of a driving rhythmic undercarriage. The Mole and Hreno team up to deliver two remixes of the original that delve into separate characteristics of the music. The "Wet Hog Mix" creates an immersive bath of low-end melody and reverb washes with just enough of that bittersweet content from the original to see the link, while the "Dry Hog Mix" goes all out on the drums for a heads-down tool of a rigid nature.
Review: Russian producer Martin Schulte is nothing short of prolific. Amazingly, this is ninth album of original material since 2006. Arguably, it's also his best yet. Filling in the gaps between sparse deep techno and melodic deep house, while retaining the hypnotic pulse of dub techno, it bobs along on waves of spacey chords, quietly shuffling rhythms and decidedly cosmic effects. Some tracks, such as the winsome "Horizon", sound like dancefloor-focused takes on Sun Electric's more ambient moments, while others, such as the curious "Rotation", are pleasingly rough around the edges. As ever with this kind of music, it's the subtle variations that are the key. Thankfully, Schulte has a masterful touch.