Thursday, 31 December 2009
Faze Action - Stratus Energy
Tiga - Ciao (Wall Of Sound)
Liquid Stranger - The International Slapstick (Interchill)
Filipsson & Lindblad - A Splendor In The Grass (Nang)
Mystikos Quintet - Wup Bup
Snuff Crew - Snuff Crew (Gigolo)
Joey Negro & The Sunburst Band - The Remixes (Z Records)
Kikumoto Allstars - House Music (Gigolo)
Namito - 11 (Kling Klong)
ATP - Energy Currency (Vibration Records)
The XX - xx (Young Turks)
But there can be only one, as the saying goes… and while the Faze Action, Liquid Stranger and Kikumoto Allstars albums all got mucho plays, without doubt the ALBUM OF 2009 for me was
The Phenomenal Handclap Band – The Phenomenal Handclap Band (Tummy Touch)
Monday, 28 December 2009
Previous releases from this Polish duo have apparently found favour with the likes of Digweed, Fanciulli, Cattaneo and Warren. That, coupled with the fact that the World EP is on What Happens, should give you some idea of what to expect: deeper vibes from the prog/tech end of the spectrum.
Panama is indeed a deep, rolling groove in classic proggy style, that reminds me a little of Age Of Love. Siberia is a little more contemporary-sounding/Berlin-ish, being an altogether sparser affair topped off with rather disconcerting spoken male vocal samples (eg, “just to give you one last joyful memory before you die”). Y’know when you hear a mix album by the likes of Howells or Lawler, or indeed the aforementioned Hernan C, and the first half-hour is always nice deep vibes? Well, that’s the kind of tackle we’re talking about here. And it’s out on Jan 11.
About: What Happens is the label run by Tim Andresen – perhaps Denmark’s biggest DJ, and a former iDJ correspondent don’tchaknow? – with a neat line in tech-house and deep prog. More info at their website and they've also got a MySpace where you can HEAR THESE TRACKS.
This is a digital-only label sampler from murmur, the still-relatively-newish London-based imprint run by Geddes, the young producer who as I recall still had a first name when he used to work in PR. It’s a five-track affair, with five different artists involved, and it’s well worth investigating.
Talking Props, AKA Brazilian newcomer Diogo Accioly, delivers a real deep house gem in the form of Catraio, while Tom Demac and Mic Newman serve up a couple more decent deep groovers, to wit Find Another and The LOVELY Whore (their caps) respectively… the former continuing the recent trend towards the return of soulful vox, the latter having just the tiniest hint of the E2:E4’s about it. Geddes’s own Rom is quality, too, blurring the boundaries between jazzy house and minimal, and then Inxec & Matt Tolfrey drop a seriously, seriously deep dub techno bomb called Decisions (with the emphasis on the dub).
In fact, so high is the quality on offer here that picking a favourite is nigh-on impossible. Right now Inxec & Tolfrey are edging it but that’s probably just cos it’s Sunday morning as I write this… overall though there’s plenty of delights on offer and it’s only been out since Dec 16 so it’s still pretty fresh. Go seek.
About: murmur opened for business in 2008, and have since put out stuff by the likes of Bearweasel, Inxec & Matt Tolfrey and Nima Gorji. You can find out more by visiting their website.
One of my most favouritest records in the entire history of the whole world ever ever EVER is Kingdom Come’s Groovy Baby, which came out on the legendary (and now revitalised) Strobe Records back in 1992 – a slab of deep house/deep garage that’s so unutterably soothing and beautiful it does funny things to my spine.
I mention this cos for the first couple of minutes, Siragusa’s Himba Raindance sounds just like it… and I don’t mean that in a bad “it’s-a-rip-off” way, I mean in a good “okay so it’s the same piano chords but basically can more people make more records like this, please?” way. It then goes a bit more Balearic-y but that’s okay, for once the hand percussion does actually add something to the track and the chants are used deep in the mix, not right up in your face… think somewhere around classic Orb, A Man Called Adam or A Certain Ratio’s ACR:MCR album, and you’re in the right ballpark.
Yeah, generally speaking Himba Raindance is purr-retty damn spiffing in my book. Which this review is rapidly turning into. So just quickly, the other half of this split EP comes from The Runners (AKA Luke Turner and Kevin Cook), and it’s called Ushuaia, and it’s kinda similar and very nearly as good, except here the Afro chants don’t work quite as well…
About: This is on Welt Sounds, run by Nima Gorji, and it came out on Dec 20 when most of us were thinking more about buying Christmas presents and cranberry sauce and stuff. Find them on Facebook here or on MySpace here. Enzo Siragusa, meanwhile, is the man behind the Fused parties, which are held in that London on a Sunday and which I’m told are rather popular.
Right, first of all, I categorically refuse to believe that Disco & Martini, whose contribution to this four-track EP is the excellent Flatliner, are actually called Gilbert Martini and Joseph Disco. I bet they’re really called Kevin Nogglethwaite and Damian Dull, or something.
We’ll let ’em off though cos Flatliner is ace, the kind of chunky groover that straddles, nay completely ignores the house/techno divide like a young East German in a bad anorak dancing atop the Berlin Wall in 1989. It’s tailor-made for Ibiza terraces but it’ll rock pretty much any spot, to be fair.
Label boss Luetzenkirchen also chips in with two tracks, I House You and Say Say Say, both of which operate in similar territory to Flatliner, albeit they’re perhaps a bit housier (and there’s thankfully no Fab-Macca-Wacky-Thumbs-Aloft samples in the latter, in case you were worried). And finally a little number called Canciones De La Selva rounds out the EP, another Iberican-terrace-friendly, housey-techno-y affair with sparingly used spoken Spanish vox, a fat-ass, hip-shakin’ bassline and some weird out-there noises for people on drugs.
Incidentally I only just recently found out about the whole ‘death of the umlaut’ thing (as in, for instance, why Luetzenkirchen isn’t called Lützenkirchen any more), and I was a bit upset about the whole thing. Come on Germany what are you playing at?! What are shit American heavy metal bands gonna do for that added hint of Teutonic menace in their names, now? Go round calling themselves Gilbert Virgindefiler and Joseph Thorhammer, I guess.
About: This has been out since Dec 14 (I’m so behind the times) on Platform B, which is Luetzenkirchen’s own Great Stuff-affiliated imprint: more info here.
No idea when this is coming out, but if you like reggae/dub-tinged vibes it’s well worth checking. Despite the somewhat bizarre lyrical references to buying your Mum flowers for mother’s day.
The original is a slo-mo steppa with a toasted vocal from Brother Culture. Think Dub Pistols in skankin’ mode and you’ll know the kind of, er, ting. If the original’s not floating the proverbial boat, however, then you’ve a fair choice of remixes. Jazzsteppa drags No Love into the murkier, sub-heavy realms of dubstep, as does Caper who provides both vocal and instrumental rubs. Finally, the US of A’s DJ Love infuses the original with some party/big beat-style breakbeats and a light dose of very silly scratch noises, the result being a track that’s more summer barbecue japery than red-lit underground dancefloor, but useful nonetheless.
About: This on Ali B’s Air Recordings, about whom you can learn more by clicking here.
**UPDATE 31/12: Just had an email from the Jellybass chaps AKA Joe & Chix, who've kindly sent a link so you can HEAR THIS for yourselves... thanks, Jellybass chaps!!
Monday, 21 December 2009
Sunday, 20 December 2009
Saturday, 19 December 2009
Thursday, 17 December 2009
Tuesday, 15 December 2009
Another new-ish label gets its first dose of TIWWD love! This time, the label in question comes from Italy, and is called Blackrose Records. You can see what they've done with the EP title, then.
Do You Want A Rose? features five tracks from five different producers. Of those five, I'd only heard of V.Sexion before, but as I seem to recall reviewing a previous release of his with the words "let's hope we hear more soon", that name was enough to pique my interest immediately. Truth be told his To The Beat Of The Base (sic) is by far the standout track here, not to mention the housiest, but the rest of the tracks - from AeN, Luca, Mirco Violi and Andy Kohlmann, and again mostly in that hard-to-quantify deep house/deep techno kinda vein - aren't too shoddy, either, with Luca's Curtidas in particular being a pretty decent dancefloor groover with an ever-so-slight Latin-y kinda edge.
About: Blackrose is a Turin-based "house/techno/minimal" (in their words) label set up earlier this year, and this is a sampler for their forthcoming introductory label compilation of the same name. You can find out more about the label by clicking here
Only the second release on this fledgling German label, and it’s a four-tracker operating in that blurry house-cum-techno zone that Germany seems to specialise in at the moment.
Actually, saying that, lead track Moved is pretty much a straight-up techno cut, albeit techno of the deeper, more abstract variety rather than a nasty jackboot stompathon. The remix from Igor Tchkotoua (AKA Pig, of Pig & Dan fame) is slightly groovier, though, while Toolin’ Around is just a deep, tracky workout that will suit any floor where they like things heavily electronic, the funky feel to the bassline just kind of edging it towards house territory. Rounding out the EP is Niedremeier’s remix of Oliver Deutschmann’s For Those About To Dub, which for me is the best track here (though I was drawn first to the Pig mix of Moved): it’s got the deep, dubby feel you’d expect from the title, and some serious bottom-end that’s pretty much a cert to get YOUR bottom-end shakin’. There’s a nice little piano interlude, too.
About: This comes on Blitz, which as stated is a new label out of Germany. Visit their MySpace here and you can hear Toolin’ Around for yourself. Niedermeier, meanwhile, was formerly one half of Notenshun, who you’ll no doubt recall put out some great releases on Chillifunk earlier in the decade.