Vincenzo De Bull - "Don't Tell Me Tell Her" (6:56)
Napoleon - "Gotta Keep Moving" (6:46)
Queen & Disco - "Satisfied" (7:35)
Review: Almost 18 months in the making; Derry doyens Q&D return with another beautifully detailed four track edit collection that's limited to 500 presses. Alan Mooney starts with bus with less of an edit and more of a stunning lesson in samplecraft as the ghost of Jacko creeps in and out of the filters. Vincenzo De Bull ups the tempo ante with a big loopy disco house gem while Napoleon conquers any dance with an edit of a Costa Rican disco delight. Finally the whole crew wind the EP with instantly distinctive strings and a thundering diva-drenched groove. You won't be able to stop yourselves...
Review: Having previously blessed us with "Ocean Side" two years back, Benedek and Tom Noble return to Superior Elevation with two more Balearic gems. One for the night time, one for sunrise; "World Gruuv" hits the boogie spot with spiralling keys wandering freely up and down a tight shimmering synth-bass led groove. Meanwhile "Profesora" on the B brings us back into reality softly with its addictive percussive hook, aquatic backing and totally tropical taste. Imagine Art Of Noise on Claremont 56 and you're on the right route.
Review: The Dessert Island Discs series continues with yet more arch remixes from across the disco and boogie spectrum. Bubbles The Pimp kicks off the A side with a tasteful treatment of Gil Scott Heron's "Winter In America," which gets rustled up into a sweet and sassy house number with a cheeky acid b-line underneath. Nelly Wilson whips up a storm on the tightly clipped, peak time-oriented "Trapped & Confused". Pierre Pressure's "Love & Beyond" takes it easy on the B side with plenty of fluttering synth wobbles to offset the choppy funk of the guitar - it's a cosmically enhanced floor burner to get you all astral under the collar.
Review: Three releases deep and every move has been matchless; Bristol-affiliated Boogie Cafe are making a very impressive name for themselves right here. Here the label rep their wider family circle with each artist making their debut; Chezz lays down a cowbell homage with lush dreamy chords and a vocal snippet that will instantly raise a steady eyebrow. Newman follows and gets his jazz on in a similar way to Mark Farina when he's deep in his Mushroom Jazz persona; all vibraphones and stretchy elastic bass. Finally Childs & Moore's "Low Key Disco" conjures feelings of Moodymann at his most cosmic. Tasty.
Review: The second sampler to precede Hometaping's forthcoming CD compilation snappily entitled Hometaping Is Fun has our stamp of approval thanks to the mammoth contribution from Deep Space Orchestra. "Louisville Slugger" is a truly epic future techno composition that ripples through various movements as its struts through the ten minutes that hog the A Side. The duo have impressed already with drops on Kirk's ART imprint and FOTO but "Louisville Slugger" has elevated them to a new level in the production stakes. On the flip Andy Ash delivers an icy punch of a track in the deep groove dynamics of "Dime Piece" whilst Italy's finest Nicholas continues his gravitation towards a pure house sound on rough bump of "Where I've Been".
Review: Neil Diablo's To Rack & Ruin edit series has been on fire of late, delivering killer reworks by The Rejected, Phil Gerus, and Que Sakamoto & NT. Volume 13 contains a quartet of collaborative reworks by Italian pals DJ Rocca and N2B. First up is "Inergy", a dirty and full-throttle disco workout that contains a fantastic extended percussion break midway through. Rocca and N2B reach for the disco delays on the super-sweet shuffler "Mister Cheryl", before whipping their shirts off for a muscular disco-funk hoedown (the sax-laden stomp that is "Music For Your Lose"). Finally, the tape delays return on the dense, disco-goes-proto-house closer "Powa", which may well be our pick of the bunch.
Review: The Africa Shakedown label coined one of last year's surprise hits with it's debut release, and the label's second release is likely to prove just as popular. Noema features once more and the Salon Zur Wilden Renate resident has collared contributions from Eddie C, Axel Boman and the Soft Rocks crew. Eddie C is first up with the irresistibly groovy "O Ye" which wouldn't look out of place on a Red Motorbike 45 dinker, whilst Noema conjures up the spirit of Bill Laswell on the dubby, scratchy production "The Shake". Studio Barnhus co-founder Boman is probably the biggest draw here and his rerub of the uncredited "Bayaya" should be familiar to anyone that's caught a DJ set from the fun loving Swede. Soft Rocks bring it home with the heavily delayed jammer "Disco Machine". Strong moves all round here sir.
Review: Big twelve from the Wurst imprint which pairs NYC underground hero Eli Escobar with the sultry tones of Jessica6 icon Nomi Ruiz. Armed with a knowledge of music that is positively enviable and a raft of releases for the likes of Plant and Money $tudies, it's strange that Escobar isn't on the receiving end of wider recognition. Whilst "Desire" is unlikely to turn him into an overnight sensation, it is a devilishly good record for the dancefloor - splaying uptempo disco rhythms over a beat reminiscent of Strafe's "Set It Off". Within all this are intricate electro arpeggios which are ridden with ease by the diva tones of Ruiz. The final echo chamber refrain is quite thrilling! On the flip Wurst boss Royston Dank dons his Beg to Differ costume with cohort Nick Chacona for a remix that swerves towards the deeper end of the house spectrum with natural aplomb.
Review: It would be fair to say that 2014 has been a vintage year for Melborune's rapidly expanding music scene, with a veritable brigade of producers from the Australian city making their mark. It's fitting, then, that local indie-dance heroes Cut Copy have decided to celebrate the city's scene with the Oceans Apart CD. This second vinyl sampler delivers more thrills, from the bongo-laden, horn-heavy boogie-funk revivalism of No Zu's "Raw Vis Vision" and the broken deep house beauty of Fantastic Man's "Robotic Temptation", to the curious analogue throb of Bell Towers' "After Party at Jackson's House", and the piano-laden Balearic blast of Ara Koufax's "Brenda".
Vamos Pintar (Let's Paint) (Max Essa Slo Mo Bubble dub)
Vamos Pintar (Let's Paint) (Max Essa extended club mix)
Vamos Pintar (Let's Paint) (Paradise 90 dub)
Review: Faze Action teams up with Nina Miranda for the jazzy disco tones of "Vamos Pintar", and the results are magic. This is unabashedly joyous, flamboyant dance music rich with vibraphone licks, synth stabs and a catchy vocal hook about painting, which Max Essa then slows down to a Balearic strut on his "Slo Mo Bubble Dub" mix before offering up a more energetic "Extended Club Mix". The real gem on the record comes on the B2 "Paradise 90 Dub", which faithfully champions the Larry Levan school of party music, and everyone knows that means guaranteed club heat.
Review: PNP is a new sub-label from the Axe on Wax family, with this first 12" single offering "re-edits of classic tunes" by a quartet of production talents. First to the plate is Fede LNG, who magically transforms a familiar chunk of dewy-eyed, loved-up soul into a crunchy chunk of party-starting deep house. Jessu Bru impresses with the brilliantly tactile and stomping "Don't You Know (909 edit)", where killer disco loops and a thickset synth bassline are underpinned by thrusting TR-909 beats, before Deejay Astral delivers the sound of summer in the shape of "Say Yes", an impeccable fusion of smooth R&B vocals and deep house nous. Finally, Nostalgia doffs a cap to Tiger & Woods via a sparkling, loop-funk rework of an eighties soul era gem.
Review: Arthur Russell and Nicky Siano... You'd donate a crucial limb to be in the studio when these were conjured, right? Expertly extended with full emphasis on the groove, Sleeping Bag have treated the heritage with the utmost respect. The guitar and horn noodles and dynamics of "Tiger Stripes" are given heaps of space to do their thing while the percussive groove takes on an even more hypnotic edge. Meanwhile on "You Can't Hold Me Down", the scratchy, unrelenting guitar rhythmic backbone remains the main focus while more attention has been paid to the drums, most notably the weightier kicks. A very respectful revisitation.
Paxton Fettel - "Ambling Waves In Eternity" (5:26)
Paxton Fettel - "Marble Street" (5:37)
Norm De Plume - "Rhythm & Sound" (7:33)
Norm De Plume - "Step In Time" (8:34)
Review: In a bid to expand the horizons of his Plumage label, Norm De Plume has begun recruiting like-minded producers. For this split EP, he's recruited Greta Cottage Workshop regular Paxton Fettel. The Copenhagen-based producer delivers some deceptively atmospheric goodness on the A, first travelling into deep space ambient house territory with the shuffling "Ambling Waves In Eternity", before effortlessly joining the dots between sultry jazz-funk and languid deep house on "Marble Street". As for Norm De Plume, he delivers a wonderfully rich and loose chunk of piano-laden jazz-house ("Rhythm & Sound"), before enhancing his deep disco-house credentials with the loopy "Step In Time".
Nachtbraker - "You're Out Of Your Element" (Detroit Swindle remix) (7:02)
Detroit Swindle - "Alright We'll Be" (M Ono remix) (7:17)
M Ono - "Delaware State Route" (Nachtbraker remix) (6:10)
Review: Detroit Swindle's Heist Recordings serve up a bunch of sweet remixes for proper house heads. Irish lads Brame & Hamo remix Fouk's "Lefty's Bar", its a sweet slice of slow-mo house that's worth a listen. Fouk then returns the favour, remixing their track "Hotshot", giving it a sleazy deep funk flavour that's unashamedly indebted to KDJ. On the flip are label head honchos Lars Dales and Maarten Smeets giving Nachtbraker's "You'e Out Of Your Element" a deep trippy tech house makeover that's perfect to use as your pre-peak time track. Oh, their track "Alright We'll Be" gets a sultry and adrenalised rework by Leipzig's M.ono. The confusion all ends in spectacular fashion with Maurits Verwoerd aka Nachtbraker's turn at a remix. He gives M.ono's "Delaware State Route" a tracky and percussive house remodel that could have equally been at home on Sascha Dive's Deep Vibes imprint.
Great Weekend - "Let's Do It Again (Do It Yourself)"
Noelle Scaggs - "Cherry Pie"
Noelle Scaggs - "Cherry Pie" (instrumental)
Review: Easily winning the imaginary award for sleeve design of the week is the third volume of The Do Over's highly prized 10" series - and the music is just as impressive! Housed inside the 3D package that comes with red and blue acetate inserts is a custom printed inner sleeve that keeps the purple marble wax nice and snug. The ten inch itself sees Wurst act Great Weekend share sides with The Rebirth's Noelle Scaggs. The former's "Let's Do It Again (Over & Over)" is the kind of vitamin D infused disco funk associated with The Do Over and demands repeat listen. On the flip, Scaggs' "Cherry Pie" sounds like a sex starved Grace Jones covering "Tainted Love".
Review: Cosmic Pint Glass, a Norwich imprint with the best label name ever, now tap Slovenian duo Ichisan & Nakova for some truly adorable nu disco goodness on the "Princesa EP. The title track's electronic piano solo above a funky bass and a cheesy yet infectious arpeggio totally rules! But it's the Ruf Dug remix which really gets a groove on, with the addition of those 80's FM synth xylophone presets: nice touch. The Jonathan Krisp remix of "MRK" is a smooth and emotive groove with some razor sharp synths and bleepy bass. Nice one!
Review: As with its' 12 predecessors, the latest compilation style EP from publicity-shy French diggers Unlimited Love gathers together an impressive selection of sought-after gems. This time round, many of the cuts are taken from eye-wateringly expensive and hard-to-find private press records. Check, for example, the fizzing 1982 boogie of Jeancy's "Reservation", the sweet breeziness of Karizma's "Will You Dance With Me" (an original 7" copy of which would set you back around L300) and the skewed, orchestra-smothered quirkiness of Marion Javius's "Waiting in the Wings". Elsewhere, Makonde's "Manzara" is a heavy chunk of psychedelic-minded Afro-funk, while Neo Experience's sumptuous "Human" is a lesser-known chunk of Philly soul bliss.
Roger Damawuzan - "Loxo Nye" (Pushin Wood remix) (5:39)
Napo De Mi Amor - "Cacatchoule "Berceuse Bassari"" (3:04)
Sewavi Jacintho - "Miade Dua" (5:35)
Review: Hot Casa's latest must-have release is a veritable smorgasbord of Togolese treats. It focuses specifically on obscure soul music made in Togo in the 1970s, with two hard-to-find original cuts being joined by two contemporary re-edits of similarly obscure classics. The EP opens with Bosq's smooth, dancefloor-focused tweal of Yta Jourias's breezy, horn-heavy tropical soul workout "Adome Nyueto", before Pushin Wood takes over and adds a little contemporary electronic bounce - and some particularly colourful synths - to Roger Damawuzan's "Loxo Nye". Over on side B, Napo De Mi Amor's "Cacatchoule Berceuse Bassari" is a fuzzy soul shuffler rich in bright, Juju style guitar solos, hazy vocals and Hammond organ stabs, while Sewavi Jacintho's "Miade Dua" is a sweatier and heavier concoction powered by loose-limbed drumming and sun-kissed instrumentation.
Review: Nominally a second volume of the recent Lectric Sounds 12" sampler exploring New York's synth wave scene, the kind of 100% Silkish saturated aesthetic there has been eschewed in favour of allowing the two production entities that make up Zoovox, responsible for the label's best work in it's fledgling life so far. King Ludd calls shot gun and opens with the lolloping synth experimentation of "Beautiful Neoteny" which brings to mind the quite excellent Philippe Laurent LP for Minimal Wave last year. It's complemented by the uber slow "Bucket Brigades", which sounds like carousel music stretched over itself and aligned with a thick syrupy groove. Night Manager counters with two equally idiosyncratic productions, demonstrating how to utilise space between sounds on the epically expansive "The Sound Of Sound", whilst "Squitty, Meet Squilly" is a beatless, supremely angelic exercise in incandescent synth tonality.
Ben La Desh - "Lotion" (Norm De Plume remix) (7:06)
Ben La Desh - "Lotion" (8:07)
Norm De Plume - "Roll On" (Ben La Desh remix) (7:27)
Review: Founded back in 2010, Norm De Plume's label Plumage really hasn't delivered the volume of records it's artfully punned name deserves with this 12" featuring the man himself alongside Ben La Desh only the third release. Perhaps the Plume is more about quality than quantity, and there is certainly plenty of the former on display across the four tracks on Give To Receive. As you might expect from the title, both Norm and Ben contribute an original production and both also remix each other's original production, making for a unique twist on the collaborative approach. Norm's production skills have developed some now, so there is no cut and loop tactics present on "Roll On", it's all his own work and the funk is still very much there whilst Ben La Desh's "Lotion" really shows off his mastery for toying with vocal loops - nice old school bell sample too! For the remixes, Norm goes sparse and deep on Ben whilst the opposing tweak offers a more tropical vibe.
Review: For anyone who considers themselves knowledgeable on electronic music's past, seeing the words Nitzer Ebb should flash up vivid memories of pounding, visceral early Mute classics like "Join In The Chant". Founding member Douglas J McCarthy is on the verge of dropping Kill Your Friends, a long overdue debut solo album for the Pylon Records imprint, and the label whet many a veteran EBMer's appetite with this intriguing 12" issue. The A Side sees "Death Is King" remixed by Soulrider, a rarely used alias of Tampa born producer Omar Torres, which results in a strangely infectious deep house number permeated by thick synth waves and swooping harmonies. It's the flip that finds particular favour here, with Rong's DJ Spun teaming up Jonah Sharp for a killer cut n paste refix of "Taken" that really keeps the industrial spirit of McCarthy's work with Nitzer Ebb alive.
Review: Some two years after their Rogue Cat bow, the superbly named No Stress Express roll back into town to show everyone how it's done with Runaway Bay. It sounds like they might have pop music's no 1 villain in crimes against the steel pan (Jamie xx) in their sights too, with the original rendition featuring a smattering of the misused percussive instrument amidst the kind of blinding '80s disco not disco groove you might expect from the Idjut Boys. Complementing this original are remixes from Location 141 and Soft Rocks with the latter's dark Balearic journey quite special.
Mistura - "Do You Love Me?" (feat Angela Johnson - Joey Negro Disco Blend) (6:20)
Sylvester - "I Need You" (Opolopo remix) (7:55)
Neapolitan Soul - "Welcome To The Dub" (11:44)
Raquel Rodriguez - "We Go Together" (Joey Negro club mix) (6:21)
Review: Over the years, Z Records' "Attack The Dancefloor" series has proved to be a serious source of tried-and-tested club cuts in a disco-centric style. Volume 13 is full to bursting with must-have tracks too. Label boss Dave Lee sets the tone, donning his famous Joey Negro alias to deliver a sumptuously summery "Disco Blend" of Mistura's Angela Johnson-voiced "Do You Love Me?" before Opolopo steals the show by turning Sylvester's surging disco anthem "I Need You" into a synth-sporting chunk of revivalist disco-boogie. Neapolitan Soul's "Welcome To The Dub" is a punchy chunk of disco-house laden in percussion and cute instrumental touches, while Lee's Joey Negro Club mix of Raquel Rodriguez's "We Go Together" is a sweet and seductive fusion of jazz-funk instrumentation and celebratory disco grunt.
Review: To complement the 123villa 34 minute epic rendition of Moebius & Neumeier, Endless Flight enlist the equally hirsute Prins Thomas to deliver two remixes of "Jiro" from the highly sought after Zero Set II album. Clearly opting to retain the kraut leanings of the source material, the A Side remix from the Full Pupp boss is distinguished by a bassline that accrues several layers of feedback fuzz as the track progresses, driven by an insistent tom-filled groove that bubbles with acidic intent. At just over five minutes long it feels like the remix finishes before it has a chance to find its natural strut, something that is remedied on the flipside rendition. Twice as long, this remix adds several layers of crisp percussion which imbue the groove with more intensity as Thomas fully unfurls kaleidoscopic swirls of synthesized hypnosis. The gurgles of acid that were mere hints on the shorter mix expands and becomes entangled with the increasingly cavernous drum rolls as the track arrives at its final destination.
Review: Following his recent appearance on DFA, Ricardo Villalobos turns in a suitably epic remix for Endless Flight in the first of two Moebius & Neumeier retweak twelve inches from the Japanese label. To set the scene, Dieter .Cluster' Moebius & Manfred .Guru Guru' Neumeier collaborated with Kraftwerk drummer Conny Plank in 1983 on Zero Set, an album of lean electronic experimentalism. A subsequent Zero Set album from Moebius & Neumeier was recorded in 2007 as tribute to Plank who had passed away some 20 years earlier. And whilst the first album has been treated to several reissues over the years, a blanket of rarity cloaks the second album, with it not being readily available outside of Japan, thus rendering a comparison of the album version of "Mango Solo" and Villalobos' epic reworking somewhat impossible. Clocking in at nearly 34 minutes over two sides of vinyl, this is classic Villalobos built around fluttering percussion, breathy discordant textures and the repetition of "one, two, three".
Review: Gassed up on the most cosmic of eastern sweets, N Gynn got our motors running with this immense four-tracker before the summer. It's been so well received this is the second run and it still sounds just as delicious. Each cut packing bulbous basslines, all polished up with rich mystic sheens, we kick off with the technicolour whirligig that is "Turkish Delight" where things get juicier and juicier the more the bassline cuts through. The same can be said for "Disco Boulette" where the groove takes even more of a cosmic turn. Flip for more rhythm based tracks as "Marmaris" layers up the drum machines amid the dusky textures and "Berka Beat" goes all out acid b-boy. Delightful.
Review: Keeping up with Legowelt's productions is one thing, whereas keeping up with his aliases is another. Danny Wolfer's steady flow of Nacho Patrol releases continues, and this time it's via Mike Simonetti's fledgling label New Jersey. The opener and title track, "Cimmerian Funk", sounds something like a demented version of the Doctor Who theme meeting the funk drums of The Stone Roses' "Fools Gold". Squealing Dr. Dre synths may have been some of the inspiration behind "Nubian West Coast", while the housiest track on the record goes to "Glide To Xanadu". The Wuka-wuka funk of "Falcon Cruise" maintains an electric pace and its night time drive motif is something French producer Kavinksy could only dream of, all that is missing is a cheeky "Shaft" vocal.
Review: The woolly jumper wearing don known as Legowelt (real name Danny Wolfers) turns to his Nacho Patrol alias for the Africa Jet Band Experience on M Division. Here we are treated to six tracks of hazy analogue disco, with the dense gurgling chaos of "Fuzz Party" our pick of the A-Side offerings. It's a tougher call on the flip, with the frantic lo-fi antics of "No Angry People" and "Ghetto Compressor" both getting frequent play on the Juno office 1210. We shouldn't be surprised when Wolfers drops such an excellent array of tracks on us; he has one of the best collections of analogue kit on earth, and, importantly, knows how to use it - but once again he's left us gazing adoringly at his work. This serves as the perfect vinyl-shaped addendum to the full Africa Jet Band Experience album, which hit the CD shelves this week.
Review: REPRESS ALERT: Bastedos returns hosting two disco objects lovingly versioned by Nad. One side features the vocal talents of a mystery man with low riding balls imploring those gathered to hear him to 'join his party'...if you look at his backside, so to speak, you will head off down to sunny rainbow filled Castro for a happy sing along and dancing tune versioned from vaults of Moby Dick.
Review: Tel Aviv groove ambassador Naduve gets his sweat on as he pegs it to the first hairy palm he can find... And crosses it with pure cosmic silver. "Ready Set Go" is a star-gazing web of twinkles over a slow-and-low drum arrangement while the Saturn Memories remix takes us into much more unforgiving aluminium territories. "10k From Essaouira" adds more fuel to his creative fire with a tech-edged groove lightly sugared with Tuvan throat singing. Finally, the in-demand Israeli gets the shake of his dreams as we strut steadily into a deep filtered loopy experience that sparkles in all the right places. Magic, as with everything else from Disco Halal.
Review: This promising Israeli talent delivers two slow burning tracks oozing with eastern influence and informed by the modern sounds of dance. Part of the 84% Creativity crew, Naduve presents his second release with Cocktail d'Amore in the form of a two track EP which revels in it's dark and seductive energy. "No Good News" builds over it's 7-minute run layering mystic vocal synths and coupling them with splashing hats and tight shakers to give just enough beat driven energy to keep a crowd to attention. The flying guitars and staccato synths of "A Trip In Tel Aviv" slither over half beat percussive structures to give this track a sinister feel ideal for late, late, late nights. Wunderkind Man Power drops a tab on "A Trip..." giving it a fresh take perfect for psychedelically inclined moments.
Review: Rothmans are back with release 9 of their ever growing vinyl only, retro football themed label and this time paying homage to the silky smoth Italian Maestro Paolo Rossi we have Berlin based Israli outfit Naduve. The debut release from this Naduve & friends finds Rothmans bringing another new dimension to their already beautifully diverse rosta with another unique record. 2 original tracks and in support on remix duties they welcome Manpower & The Claydermans to the Rothmans family. The first track Miracles From Erdine sees the guys bringing that slowed down chuggy sound that Rothmans are well renowned for whilst Nein ups the tempo a little more with a fat italo beat whilst both remaining to bring with them a unique sound oozes the Tel Aviv vibe. Bringing up the rear we have Manpower doing his thing the only way he knows how with a classic Manpower take on the track that enevatibley ends up kicking as hard as a Paolo Rossi penalty, and The Claydermans finish off the record with what can only be described as an absolute banger. If anyone wondered what the connection is between Tel Aviv & Berlin then I dont think you will hear a record this year that exemplifies it better than this . Rothmans score the winner yet again!
Review: NYC-based Japanese groove guru Takuya returns with two alluring, highly cosmic funkers and a whole stash of dope remixes. "Spacetak" lives up to its name in every possible way. Big juicy synths that flap and fold over a nicely slouched groove; this will aid and abet many people looking to lose their minds this summer. "Sun" is also fittingly titled thanks to its premium vibrancy and latent feels (not to mention a wry bit of slap bass) Remix-wise Tronik Youth get all dubbed out on "Spacetak" while Jonny Sender whips us back to early 2000s City Rockers vibes with some superb use of the trumpet elements. Talk time is over.
Review: Brooklyn label Free Association arrives with the following label mantra; "The importance of Free Association is that the members speak for themselves, rather than repeating the ideas of others; they work through their own material, rather than parroting anothers." Their debut release sets a tone of quality with which Free Association will hopefully maintain, pairing original material from Stockholm trio Name In Lights with remixes from celebrated compatriot Axel Boman and Brooklyn newcomer Cameo Culture. Operating at a chunky sounding midtempo pace, "Naughty" sees Name In Lights spread incandescence across the channels with some star reaching synth patterns that tease out the inner glee from a chopped up soul vocal; it's an unashamedly happy track that the more considered selectors will consider a secret weapon over the summer months. Boman's remix is a typically eccentric take on house music, displaying a dizzying degree of musicality as it builds which will probably feel as equally ecstatic as the original when employed at the right moment. Cameo Culture's remix is a much more straight forward proposition, maintaining the original's chunky feel but adapting it to a bouncy deep house template
Review: Those who keep an eye on the more discerning end of the disco spectrum will know the Stockholm trio Name In Lights for their fine work on the FEED imprint, as well as gracing the good ship Wurst with a remix of Nick Chacona late last year. The latter should act as a beacon of taste, as does this full release for the always solid Under The Shade label which should see the trio gain wider appreciation. There's an undeniable quality to the deftness that lead track "Disco Touchdown" switches from the opening chunky disco groove into an even more substantial house bump replete with an all encompassing piano hook. Dr Dunks arrives next on remix duties and retains the originals' conceptual switch, growing from glistening dubby disco into something wholly more euphoric once the rising arpeggio pulse pushes its way to the fore. On the flip "Touch The Sky (E Track)" is a leaner groove, filled with expansive melodic touches that suddenly burst into a loose disco jaunt with a delightful vocal hook. Brooklynite Eddie Mars adds some nice electronic bass bounce to the track on a nicely paced cosmic shuffler of a remix.
Review: Kalita Records and CC:EDITIONS (a new venture by Australia's CC:DISCO) come together to release a 12" EP containing four of Nana Tuffour's greatest electronic burger highlife tracks (including the massive 'Sikyi Medley' and 'Asamando'), accompanied by interview-based liner notes.
Big support so far from Gilles Peterson, Hunee, Antal, Norman Jay, Palms Trax, Alexander Nut, Dan Shake & Bradley Zero!
Review: According to the brief press blurb accompanying this first 7" release from the Sudden Edits imprint, Napoleon is the chosen moniker of a previously unheralded Costa Rican disco digger. This may or may not be true, of course, but there's much to suggest that the mysterious producer is a serious talent. His "Cosmic Cheetah" is an eccentric, synth-laden affair and sounds French in origin. Half whispered, sleazy vocoder vocals ride a chugging and slightly exotic rhythm built around winding synths and fuzzy guitars. On the flip, Honey Soundsystem man Hristo drops another gem; a sinewy, string-laden chunk of dewy-eyed slo-mo soul that sounds like it was designed to soundtrack Balearic sunsets and chilly autumnal sunrises.
Roman Bezzina - "I Want You" (Gary Low re-edit) (4:58)
Roman Bezzina - "Fly Away Jack" (instrumental mix) (3:55)
Bent - "Exercise 4" (5:42)
Review: Manchester's Red Laser: look no further for the highest calibre nu disco and edits. Napoleon is back, following up from his great Moogie Wonderland release on Secret Life Recordings earlier in the year. "Step off" is an infectious slice of feel-good, boogie down vibes this side of Bent or Tensnake. Paris' Romain Bezzina actually appears twice; firstly with a sweet edit of "I Want You" by Italo disco legend Gary Low and then with the delightful, summery, slow-mo drifter "Fly Away Jack", a collaboration with Simon Mills aka Napoleon and one half of Bent. Speaking of which, the legendary Nottingham duo appear also with the classic "Exercise 4" taken from their highly praised 2004 album, Ariels.
Natasha Kitty Katt & Dennis Probert - "Master Of The Moon" (5:40)
Glitter In The Dark (6:17)
Review: Edinburgh's Natasha Kitty Katt has previously proved to be a more than reliable source of contemporary disco sleaze. Here she returns to action after a 12-month absence with another batch of throbbing, floor-friendly cuts. Chief amongst these is opener "Master of the Moon" - co-produced by regular collaborator (and daddy Kitty Katt) Dennis Probert - which elevates the Winners' underground disco classic "Ready For The Future" to dubbed-out new disco-house heights via new beats, synths and tons of trippy effects. It's a party-starting winner, all told. Similarly impressive is chunky and throbbing flipside "Glitter In The Dark", a bouncy dose of Italo-disco/house fusion rich in thrusting arpeggio bass, glassy-eyed synthesizer melodies and sweaty layered percussion.
Review: Edinburgh's Ghetto Disco Records are back with their second release, a label run by Natasha Kitty Katt and her father. When two creative minds join and bring a modern take on disco, this is the result. Kitty Katt & Twisted Soul Collective 'have aligned forces to bring you an array of ideas, thoughts, sounds and feelings.' Definitely for the disco dancers, you can visualise grooving to this number under a mirror ball. "Twisted Katt" on the A side brings the funk, complete with liquid bassline and breakbeats (hear the drummer get wicked) assisted by a tough four the floor beat for dancefloor dynamics. On the flip is "Cosmic Bitch" with its Salsoul Orchestra style strings section looped up to perfection, over another reliable house rhythm and some nice filter sweeps.
Review: Since discarding illicit disco re-edits in favour of original compositions, Roy Dank's Wurst Music label has barely put a foot wrong. Echoing the revival in interest in New York for off-kilter house, Wurst has thrived by specialising in house music that appeals to the nu-disco generation. This new EP from veteran Brooklyn house producer Henry Maldonado is another great example of Wurst at its best. With Craigslist-recruited singer Javi on vocals, "Till It Hurts" is a nagging underground house/disco singalong that doffs a cap to Funhouse-era Jellybean, Prelude style synth disco and even Wurst's penchant for delay-laden piano riffage. There's also a decent dub for those who prefer instrumentals. "Push 4 Love" continues in this past/present vibe, utilising some excellent Freestyle percussion sounds, classic basement bass and even hookier vocals. The accompanying Son of Sound Dub is, if anything, even better - all Latin Rascals style edits, a stripped down groove and copious amounts of delay.
Review: Given the runaway success of the recent reissue of DJ Nature's 1993 gem Necessary Ruffness Volume 1 - an early outing under the alternative Nature Boy alias that has long been regarded as a British deep house classic - it was inevitable that Volume Two would quickly follow. Like its predecessor, the EP is something of a cut-and-paste deep house treat, with the former Wild Bunch member wrapping vocal samples from classic disco, boogie and jazz-funk tunes around chunky, bass-heavy grooves. We're particularly enjoying the rolling late night pressure of "On Your Side", with its relentless bassline and fluttering Mystic Merlin samples, and the Dream II Science smoothness of "Relax Man", though the more disco-fired bounce of "Whatchusay (dubwize)" may well be the premier peak-time treat.
Review: After one half of the legendary Optimo Dj's broke out with his side line in Betty Botox edits last year, now it's the turn of Jonnie Wilkes to try something solo. Named after a Russian sculptor, the collaboration between Wilkes and James Savage from Oscuro P has already yielded one 12", and this second gets two stunning remixes from a couple of top-name producers.
Wonderboy producer Joakim, who got global props after his mix of Dj Mehdi's Pocket Piano unleashes a beast with his version, an epic acid disco track that ebbs and flows to perfection over ten glorious minutes. It's hard to imagine something this deep and well crafted will be slept on and it could well turn out to be a bit of a classic over the next few months - it's that good.
Former DFA and UNKLE helmsman Tim Goldsworthy did an initial mix of Pictur under his alias The Loving Hand. It was a 6 part, 24 minute long mix that thankfully has been edited down by Naum Gabo for the single into two Dj-friendly excerpts. Even in it's edited state it retains the original's sense of odyssey, as Goldsworthy takes the listener on a real journey over the two tracks. Remixes this accomplished and sophisticated don't come around every day, so it's well worth picking these up sharpish.
Review: Optimo Music, the record releasing branch of the Optimo Espacio empire overseen by messrs Twitch and Wilkes has to date been punctuated by an emphasis on putting out music that truly reflects the kaleidoscopic nature of the duo's legendary DJ sets. Equally, the releases have tended to fly under the radar of general consumption, finding a home with the more discerning of ears. That won't necessarily change with this homage to Glasgow's musical heritage from Naum Gabo, Wilkes' collaborative project with James Savage, but it's likely anyone who attends a club over the coming months will hear their devilishly good reworking of Simple Minds "Theme For Great City". Wisely deciding not to mess with the template of what is considered a balearic classic, Naum Gabo's rework is a faithful one that adds some sonic drama to those distinctive synth stabs. Equally good is the B Side cover of the 1979 punk funker "Wet Job" from Fingerprintz that retains the jagged nature of the original but infuses the mood with a decidedly noirish sensibility. Look out for the forthcoming Factory Floor single "Real Love" on this label which features a truly mind melting Optimo remix.
Review: Dublin label Apartment Records return with their fourth release sporting yet more humorous runout inscriptions ("it takes a grand of yours for me to rush like a motherfucker" being the latest gem) and seemingly a new addition in the shape of Pharoah & The Goose. But wait, this is in fact another alias for West London producer Nick Wilson who contributed the inaugural release on Apartment as NCW. Whereas Panther Veil was three tracks of supreme dusty house, this latest emission from Wilson is something different altogether meshing elements of jazz with techno across two untitled 12 minute productions. Those averse to the words jazz in close connection with dance music should not worry as Wilson fuses these elements deep into his productions with largely intoxicating results. The slow burning B Side is a particular delight!
Review: The Golden Lands EP marks the second release from Vivod, the limited pressing vinyl only boutique label from famed Cestrian Robot Ali Renault. Whilst Renault himself handled the Vivod debut - with meaty aplomb - this second release from the label turns to sometime Apartment Records artist NCW for two productions, the first of which features the distinctively named Piss. "Golden" evokes early wave and primitive synth sounds, with droning, delay laden vocals floating over a backdrop of gurgling analogues and gazey guitars - one for Minimal Wave fans! Complementing this "Lands" sees NCW draw out an expansive Cosmiche synth scape in a Steve Moore meets Michael Bundt style.
Review: DFA continue to hit the right note in the second half of 2010 with this encouraging debut release from NDF aka Bruno Pronsato and Sergio Giogini, hot on the heels of essential releases from The Crystal Ark and Jee Day. The original version of "Since We Last Met" is steeped in melancholic beauty which spreads from the warm synth melodies to the undulating kaleidoscopic chords and intermittent bursts of languid vocals. Beyond the mid point inclusion of some sub heavy kicks, this is a track that has no illusions towards crescendo building, its purpose is to enchant and delight - something that is achieved with ample success. Ricardo Villalobos makes his DFA debut across the B Side with a 12 minute plus abridged 12' edit of the suitably expansive 17 minute remix which appears on the digital release. Giogini's vocals cascade in the mix around off kilter drum programming and a bodily function sampling bassline that combines with dubby melodies for a truly hypnotic effect. Top release!
Review: You can always rely on New York's Razor-N-Tape for high quality respectful edits. Cut in Brooklyn, here's another disco killer that is great for dancing - courtesy of JKriv & Aaron Dae out now via their Reserve imprint is Londoner Ali Gibbs aka Nebraska, who tweaks a soulful sample with signature finesse; it's part disco, part house and all vibes on "Usin' Me". Lovebirds then get in on the action to deliver a soulful and bittersweet early Chicago house perspective, the legendary DJ Nature never fails to deliver either and gets properly deep and emotive with his terrific remix. As does Scottish veteran The Revenge on the flip, taking the track into the late night on his stellar effort.