Cody Currie - "As Of Yet" (feat Joel Holmes) (5:09)
Grant Nelson - "In The Dark" (5:59)
Pontchartrain - "Don't Change It Up" (5:43)
Goddard - "Almasti" (6:11)
Review: With such a star-studded line-up of old and new talent involved, it's little surprise to find that De La Groove's fourth vinyl release is seriously good. It's that good, in fact, that there's no space to go into each and every highlight. Instead, we'll point you in the direction of some of our personal favourites. Check first the breezy and soulful US garage revivalism of Art of Tones' impeccable "So Sweet", before turning your attention to the dreamy, vibraphone-laden deep house sexiness of Cody Currie's "As of Yet (featuring Joel Holmes)". Grant Nelson's "In The Dark" is a fine slab of late '90s style UK garage, while Goddard's "Almasti" sounds like a nu-disco era riff on Pepe Bradock deep house classic "Deep Burnt".
Review: Ron Wilson's 777 serves up more raw and rusty house jams on a new various artists sampler entitled Internal Affairs: this is serious! On the A side is newcomer Brighton with "Tesla" (Leaves Remix), while Frankfurt's Orson Wells gives us "Ratio" where Saarbruckens finest: Roger 23 gets on the remix and delivers a lush deep acid rendition this side of Tin Man. On the flip, Leaves returns with the impressive "Third Floor" getting an awesome remix by Pablo Mateo; working those drum computers to impressive effect as always. Finally, Orson Wells stays on too; working the nightshift on his remix for Glyn's "Kevin Lomax" and giving it a lo-fi, neon lit makeover that will appeal to retroverts dancing well into the morning at Robert Johnson next Sunday morning.
Review: You should know by now that Plastik People is the go-to spot for the most upfront garage house done in a classic style, and they're spelling it out good and proper with The Sound Of Garage House. Marc Cotterell leads the way with the jazzy vibes and deliciously liquid chords of "Those Days" before Ed The Spread brings a nagging shuffle and sharp string stabs to hard-stepping bumper "The Bauhaus Movement". Grant Nelson keeps things tuff with the natty piano hooks and diva slices of "Move Close" while Rocket Dubz ups the funk to 11 for hands in the air party starter "Dirty Bath".
Review: Rising Greek producer G.U.S. steps up on Equivalence with some pumped up vintage techno sounds that take more than a few cues from the UK. "Shelf Cloud" strikes a fine balance between tough and dreamy, using a twitchy set of drums moving at a decent pace and flooding them with atmospheric pads and a slice of vocal that forms a central hook to the track. "Halo" goes even deeper into British territory with its chopped up breakbeat funk calling to mind the dexterous sample magic of Stasis, and then "Haze Phenomenon" heads into deep tech house territory riding a pumped up shuffle beat and swooping pads.
Review: "Rituale is a brand new label for 2016 setting off with a beautiful structured EP called (Bury Me Where I Fall) by the talented producer known as G76. This EP is made up with 2 original track's lasting up to a good 16 minuets each. A1 - Youth Riot & B1 - Four For Four. The heart and soul of this EP is represented by the rioting youth struggling for a better future in a society riddled with corruption and selfishness."
Review: After an excellent first release featuring Freerotation lynchpin Steevio, Russ Gabriel's Rivers Of Groove label returns with a pair of excursions into lush, bubbling techno from Gabriel on his own. As a first generation UK techno stalwart, it's little wonder that he can turn out productions as accomplished as these, but there's no sense that he's treading water. "Ambulate" bears the hallmarks of modular production, all twinkling, morphing synth tones chiming around a delicate beat, while "Dover Calling" favours a snappier electro palette, but both stand out from the crowd for the sheer quality in the production, the warmth in the composition and the needlepoint focus given to every shred of detail in this crucial cuts.
Set Your Mind To It (Mr Fingers Jazzy instrumental) (7:13)
Set Your Mind To It (radio vocal) (3:12)
Set Your Mind To It (Gallifre Drums & club) (9:51)
Set Your Mind To It (Winelight instrumental) (3:22)
Review: Quintessential Chicago deep house; Brett Wilcots' last release as Gallifre landed in 1990 and came with a sublime Mr Fingers edit. Reissued for the first time ever, the whole EP surges with soul and feeling as we're treated to versions for every occasion. Fingers gets his jazz on with a hypnotic, slightly dubby take (and an arousing sax solo), Gallifre provides a powerful percussion heavy dancefloor twist and a peppy original that really brings Jimmie Lee's vocals to life while the Winelight mix adds a soft sunset filter for a sensual finale. Timeless.
Don't Walk Out On Love (Frankie Knuckles club remix) (7:28)
Don't Walk Out On Love (Frankie Knuckles Dream version) (4:08)
Don't Walk Out On Love (Latin remix) (6:21)
Don't Walk Out On Love (radio edit) (4:22)
Review: While the original mixes of Gallifre's Larry Heard co-produced '89 deep house groover were naturally superb, it was always the remix 12" that the majority of DJs reached for. That's because it contained a pair of brilliant Frankie Knuckles remixes in his distinctively luscious, loved-up style. As this timely reissue proves, those reworks have lost none of their allure. Knuckles' "Club Remix", which is built around warm and tactile analogue bass, rich chords and Mondee Oliver's sublime vocal, is undoubtedly the stronger of the two for club plays, though the shorter "Dream Remix", with its rush-inducing ambient sections and nods towards contemporaneous Italian deep house, is arguably even better. Simply essential.
Review: Surely one of the finest record labels operating out of Russia right now, Udacha welcomes Gamayun back for a second time to admirably dive into the particular spirit that surrounds the label. Somewhere between loose-fit soulful house grooves you might hear on Downbeat and a more mystical, far-out spirit, this mysterious producer is a dab hand at weaving a particularly enchanting spell. The jazzy fluidity of "C-Music" could easily sit alongside some of Vakula's more wayward works, while "Aerial Dance" pirouettes off into an abstract rhythmic space that truly stimulates even as it confuses. Records this fresh-sounding don't roll around every day.
Review: Diego Gamez is a US-based house producer who has previously appeared on big man Jus-Ed's Underground Quality stable. That, in our opinion, deserves an applause in itself and instantly turned our attention to his new EP for his very own Deependance label. The mood is similar to his last outing but there's something more molecular about these tracks and it feels like Gamez has added a slightly darker edge to his sound design. "No Depen-dance", for example, is a deep and dubby house tune with an interstellar sensibility, and the same goes for "Travelling Through Phases", a beautifully spacey jam with plenty of funk twists. Over on the flip, "New Horizon" is bumpier but nonetheless cinematic, and "Psych" squelches and morphs its way across desolate and starry landscapes. Deeper than deep space.