Review: REPRESS ALERT: From the label: Especial starts its 3rd set of releases welcoming Frankfurt's Hotel Lauer for an EP of unadulterated uplifting club music. A meeting at the Garden festival finale in idyllic Croatia last summer along the lines of 'I love your records' / 'I love your label' came to the instant conclusion to bring Team Lauer to Especial. Things starts with the most club friendly and definitely head-rushing track ever on Especial, in "Tamzarian". Acid, tick. 909, tick. Piano, tick. The sound of the summer encapsulating in 6 and half pulsating minutes. The pace continues on "Sanger". A tougher beast, with a nod to Especial homeboys Mr Fairplay and Mr Sen, this is no pastiche, but takes classic Lauer production of water-tight percussion, snapped hats, layered loops, drops and lifts and brings it all together for the personal favourite of the EP. "Perry Patch" brings the 303 to the fore, arpeggios underpin, while trademark cut-up vocal stabs create a melody to swirl in your subconscious for days. Like a song you feel you've always known but never heard. Finally, the electro inspired "Klutzny" rounds this off. Kraftwerk keys, 1981 golden years TOTPs on the mind.
Review: It's been a hot minute since Timothy J. Fairplay slipped on his Junior Fairplay guise, but he's done just that for this bleep-tastic new 12" on (Emotional) Especial. "End Of Love" is unabashed in its embrace of early Yorkshire techno tones, making a fine job of resurrecting the bleep spectre and letting it shake up the dance once more. Roy Of The Ravers is a smart choice of remixer, and he brings an off-kilter acid rub to the table in his idiosyncratic, braindance-inflected style. The B-side is equal laden with purposefully dusty dance grooves transplanted from the late 80s / early 90s, with "Faxes From The Future" hitting a particularly sharp point in its lazy breakbeat roll and the clanging harmonies of the stabs.
Sexy Merlin - "See You In The Dark" (Jamie Paton remix)
Guy Schalom - "Habibi" (Jamie Paton remix)
Blancmange - "Feel Me" (Jamie Paton remix)
Gatos Negros - "Overdrive" (Jamie Paton remix)
Review: Jamie Paton has been a regular fixture on [Emotional] Especial since the label first came to light, conjuring up a seductive blend of leftfield dance music with a broad range of influences. This time around he's turning out some of his remixes, leading in with the sweaty, dense throb of Sexy Merlin's "See You In The Dark". Guy Schlalom's "Habibi" by way of contrast becomes a lighter confection peppered with bubbly synth lines and an almost poppy persuasion. Blancmange's "Feel Me" has a more cosmic lilt in its voluminous tones, and "Overdrive" by Gatos Negros drifts out on an off-kilter kind of boogie for all manner of deviant dancers to get head-nodding to.
Review: Peter Riley's back story as Persian reaches back to the early 90s - his back catalogue of crucial, sought after deep house cuts is a must-grip for any serious digger of globetrotting grooves. [Emotional] Especial taps up this vaunted producer's archives to present two of the finest productions he's ever committed to wax. "Khaab" is a subtly bumping jam with gorgeous square wave bass, smoky pads and evocative vocal trysts. "Parvaaneh" is a spacier cut that puts the bass front and centre and does away with the drums, making for a powerful, atmospheric statement to create tension mid-set. Project Runaway remix "Khaab" in a respectful, immersive fashion, and Alphonse nudges "Parvaaneh" into a dense and chugging roller.
Review: Hailing from Tel Aviv and featuring Antinote-affiliated Alek Lee, Project Runaway make good on their initial promise with a sterling club-ready record for [Emotional] Especial. "Met" is a perfect statement of intent - a dynamic peak time record with an urgent, insistent groove peppered with organic percussion, zippy FX and a freaky vocal to get overground and underground party people shaking unanimously. The dub on the flip takes things out to weirder territory for the freak-out crew, without losing sight of the necessary functionality of the track. This is as direct a hit as you could ever expect from [Emotional] Especial, but loaded with bags of personality to satisfy the more curious minds out there.