Review: Max Essa made his name through swathes of releases for Bear Funk, but broke through once more with his essential "Lanterns" LP for Music For Dreams back in 2018. His appearances have been scattered since, but now he makes a welcome return on Hell Yeah with some of that plush, full frequency synth disco business. "Tombolo" is defined by its rich layers of lead chords and cascading electronic percussion, but it's also made even more seductive by subtle splashes of dubby processing. "The Great Adventure" is a cooler jam for more mellow moments, but it's still no slouch in the funk department. "Fool In The Pool" finishes the record off with a truly laid back combination of tabla drums, electric piano and dreamy pads. Blissful, beautifully composed music to let the mind drift to.
I Can't Sleep (Sol Levante remix By Leo Mas & Fabrice) (6:36)
I Can't Sleep (Pete Herbert remix) (7:17)
Review: Japanese Balearic crew Okinawa Delays have long been friends with Tokyo-based Brit Max Essa, while the latter previously remixed one of their tracks for Mudd's Claremont 56 label. Now they've taken their musical partnership to a whole new level by offering up their first joint single. In its original form, "I Can't Sleep" adds an attractive female vocal to a sparkling, ear-catching backing track rich in bubbly nu-disco bass, White Isle-ready piano riffs, swirling synthesizer pads, typically Japanese melodies and mid-tempo beats that boast just the right amount of dancefloor weight. The accompanying remix package is strong, too, with a wonderful dream house interpretation by Italian veterans Leo Mas and Fabrice being joined by a funky Balearic disco take from nu-disco master Pete Herbert.