Review: Canadian maestro Jay Tripwire is a long time underground stalwart with countless gold-dust releases to his name, and still the modest artist keeps pushing on with more stellar tech house immersion heaters. Here he's been invited to Euphoria for an EP that burrows into the most shadowy corners of his sound. "H3misphere" is a spooky jam driven by a shuffling groove and offset with some dubby flourishes - a perfectly balanced workout for the club with a seductive air of mystery lingering around the rhythm section. "Werqles" is a lighter affair, but it's no slouch in the freaky department as a plethora of disembodied machine wriggles ping around the crisp 4/4 throwdown. The whole B-side is given over to SIT's "Remux" of "H3misphere", which holds the groove down in a more linear manner but keeps that chilling atmosphere intact just behind the beats.
Review: Romana Records 003 Takes a slightly different route this time we got a original from Ted Amber Botanic Minds sunset Series and a remix from Magnus Asberg and a stella remix from TIJN Curte Vache,Moss Co. The original has been been a firm favorite for Arapu for some time now. Early support: Arapu, Vincentlulian, Sepp, Nu Zau, Iuly.B, Viceversa, Silat Beksi, Archie Hamilton, Miroloja, Cesar Merveille, Direkt, Fabrizio Maurizi, Barut.
Review: Since 2013 Tijn (not to be confused with J. Tijn) has been issuing a steady stream of high grade minimal and tech house for labels like Decay, Memoria, Moss Co and more recently Vuew. Now he comes to Aesthetic for a varied EP that leads in with the dusky, blue-hued tones of "Waves" - a moment for true immersion and introspection. By way of contrast, "CC" captures the energy of classic mid 00s minimal a la labels like Cynosure - all bugging samples hopping around a swinging groove - and we can't get enough of it. "Sundayyzz" takes things in a spookier direction, keeping that stripped back shuffle but holding down a more mellow energy compared to "CC".
Review: Berlin scene stalwart Nico Stojan is back on his respected Ouie imprint that he co-runs with Acid Pauli, with their seventeenth edition here. On the 'Cardano' EP you can sure bet that it is jam packed with glassy-eyed and bittersweet dancefloor narratives, as evident on the sublime title A side title track. Soothing melodies, warm bass and subtle rhythms underpin this melodic deep house journey throughout. On the flip, we have two more numbers aimed squarely at the Sunday morning dancefloor in the form of "Together" and "Inhale", the latter in particular will take you into the exotic with its chilled-out summertime island vibes.
Review: Following a sterling first drop from Nick Holder, Selections return in fine style with this EP from Tobi Danton. This is proper deep house in the modern mode - crisp beats and silky smooth synth lines shot through with a spaced-out attitude. Just tune in to "That's Right" and find yourself transported to the dancefloor of your dreams. "1988" is equally light and limber, with a classy vocal sample heralding the Chicago roots of the music, while "Last Dance" takes on a more anthemic tone with its strong melodic core and uplifting bump. Kevin Over comes on board for a remix of "Last Dance" that treats the original with care, edging some 90s motifs, dubby flourishes and a tougher jack into the mix without losing that hazy mood.
Review: Colin McGraw's MDA Analog project continues to enjoy a renaissance after more than 20 years of silence, serving up the third instalment of vintage techno with a house-spirited warmth. "Lost But Not Broken" capitalises on some particularly soaring synths to create a uniquely uplifting flavour, while "A Theory Of Everything" takes things deeper with dubby pulses underneath an ear-snagging set of keys. "Mimico Creek" has a particularly playful arrangement marked out by nimble arps and bleeps, and "Scavenger Hunt" completes the set with a punchy rhythm section and yet more plush layers of harmonic interplay.
Review: Andalucian imprint Rationalism is back with its first EP for 2020, featuring straight-up club beats from two young and prominent electronic music producers. Homeboy Cajal (Madtech) takes care of the A side with the groovy and swingin' minimal funk of "Housy Beat" which reminds us of that classic Minibar vibe, while second offering "Morning" is classic deep house for the afterhours - just like the name suggests. On the flip, we have Argentinian Juzel (Frost Plates) who delivers the Todd Terry influenced tool that is "Esouh" followed by the lean and trippy boompty-boomp of "Tetris In The Club". Basically, more great tunes from Martin Bellomo's respected label.
Review: Those stylish minimalists at Meander are back with more of their superbly stripped down sounds. At the helm for this latest trip is Alci, who brings the clipped electronic funk to his opener "Can't Dance" which will surely have many people trying to prove they don't suffer from the same issue. "Sonsuz Seconds" is more airy and deft, with incidental chords floating above a rugged drum line that is nice and rickety. "Kelime Bir" gets into melon twisting late night territory with its bendy tones and freaky pads, then "Kelime Iki" almost falls over itself its drums areas quick and kinetic. Fantastic stuff once more from this label.
Review: Graded, Regraded and now Intergraded? Label chief Midland has stated that it is a new label intended to focus on releasing music by new artists; whether unknown, emerging or established but working under different aliases. For the sixth release, we have Em and Stav. Well established in the vanguard of Bristol and beyond's electronic music scene, both individually in their own right and as a duo, they are partners in real life and behind the decks. Great stuff on this one: from the hypnotic and bass-driven broken beat of "Afterglow", to the soulful futurist electro of "Inner Space" and the emotive off-kilter IDM of B-side cut "Atmospheric Love" - this is a terrific effort from the promising pair.
Review: Jackmate, the king of off-kilter house, makes a welcome addition to Matthew Herbert's Accidental catalogue - matter of fact his style is right at home! The 'Werk' EP is the Philpot co-chief's first release in six years and he's in fine form as always. From the dry and disjointed shuffle of the title track, to the smooth and sensual deepness of B-side cut "Skeletones" - a Moodymann-ish cut which is perfect mood music for the warm-up or afterhours alike. Closing out the EP is something much more offbeat for the Sunday afternoon slot - the boppy summertime groove of "The Clarinettes' which like its namesake has some irresistible wind instrument action to get you on your feet and shaking your behind.
Review: Juliche Hernandez is the young Canarian owner of Downhill Music, with releases on ViVA Music, PIV, Decay and MadTech. His very deep and dark style of sound is right at home on Brooklyn Bridge Music Company, who present his 'Tormento Bridge' EP of last year which has been recently repressed due to high demand. Tough rolling and dubby tech house for the main room can be heard on the title track, while the bouncy funk of "Como Los Triuleros" calls to mind the sounds of iO Mulen or Djebali. On the flip, you have the mental groove of "Old Birds" and its sexy vocal which is perfect mood music for Sunday morning boat parties.
Review: Pathway Traxx's diffusion label OFFPath returns with its fourth installment, featuring four heroes of the minimal house underground curated by label boss Niko Maxen. We have Londoner Adam Monti (4plae) up first with the sunny tech house of "Camberwell Blues", then Dudley Strangeways & Tijn close out the A side with some deep afterhours boompty business. On the flip, Rising star Josh Baker out of Leeds delivers more of his reliably hypnotic and slinky groove action on "Rewriting Old Methods" and Shacklo's "Bermuda" channels the very best of Todd Terry style classic house.
Review: Nobody does tough rolling tackle for the peak time quite like the Audiojack boys. The Leeds-based duo head up the revered Gruuv imprint and have left their indelible mark on The White Isle with their legendary parties. Indeed, their sound is a worthy addition to the Mannheim-based 8bit imprint; Jorge and Nick Curly, like Rial & Birkenshaw themselves, churn out proper tech house that is aimed squarely at the main room. The track in question is "Are We Here", that sees them deliver something a bit more restrained than usual. This is a smooth and euphoric slow burner that's perfect to build up to the bangers in your set, harnessing all that 'energy'. Speaking of which, that's the operative word throughout the B side cut "Higher" with its deep and bass-driven pulsation that's sure to get the sweat dripping from the walls.
Review: Debutant Drew is up next on Fabrizio Sala's Animae LTD. The mysterious producer, who we assume to be a fellow named Andrew, presents two bouncy minimal tech house grooves here that are guaranteed to work the dancefloor. A-side cut "God Seducing Me" is exactly the kind of mesmerising and bass-driven tackle that will mix well with Northern tech house sounds by Jack Wickham or Josh Walker, while on the flip "Devil Catch Me Tonight" will hypnotise you into submission with its ethereal charm and is perfect for the afterhours dancefloor.
Review: Viktor Talking Machine are back on Monaberry, only this time their limber, discofied house music is getting the remix treatment from two choice operators. "Joko" is up first, getting a buoyant seeing-to by Andhim who injects the track with all kinds of nerve-jangling excitement. There are MIDI brass stabs, lush pads and a percussive workout to get people working the floor with all their might. "Line" gets a more tender touch from Till Von Sein, whose playful approach is imbued with sunshine and good vibes while sporting a little Balearic slouch in its easy tempo and airy atmosphere.