Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Luvverly Trax

Title: Cloaks
Artist: Victorville
Label: Hypercolour Digital
Cat Number:
Genre: Tech House

Cloaks (original)
Cloaks (dub)
Cloaks Losoul remix)
Cloaks (Alex Jones 'Should Have Been On Vinyl remix')

Who is/are "Victorville"? He/They sounds like some Dickensian double-agent trading in laudenum, ladies toiletries and doing a nice sideline as a gentleman thief. Enough of the scatology. This is a seriously groovy package that is more than a little enigmatic. I don't notice a huge amount of difference between the original and the dub, so it'll hopefully suffice to say that neither disappoint in the dancefloor dept. Good, solid driving gear with an ethereal feel. Losoul's remix is a quirky take that sounds little like the original. Some similar noises, that sound like someone blowing across the top of a milk bottle a little too earnestly, are used to exaggerate the groove. The Alex Jones 'Should Have Been On Vinyl remix' has a dubby feel in parts and takes the track in a slightly different direction. On balance it's probably my favourite. A good package that further develops Hypercolour's digital arm and blurs the lines between vinyl and mp3.

Title: Mainline
Artist: Kris Wadsworth
Label: Hypercolour
Cat Number:
Genre: House

Mainline (original)
Mainline (Sei A remix)

'Mainline' is simple sophistication, a very basic backing track lets a vocal take centre-stage, but the arrangement is such that the vocal never overwhelms the track, indeed the kick gets louder half-way through, as do the snares. Everything is perfectly paced and tracky, just how I like my house music to be. It's a peak time banger that simmers with constant intent. Sei A's remix offers a different take on the original, with a much fuller sound and a rolling bass. It's a warmer version, perfect for those moments when nothing else matters. Two sides of the same coin, both different enough to fit into the same set without feeling repetitious. For sparseness and aggression go for the original, for warmth the remix. Good work chaps.

Title: Nashu
Artist: Cally
Label: Fear Of Flying
Cat Number:
Genre: Tech House

Nashu (original)
Nashu (Anonym remix)
20 Hours Left

Starting off and taking no prisoners, 'Nashu' uses some very basic dancefloor elements to drive things relentlessly along. A powerful bass kick and a synth stab that rises and falls in intensity are it's calling cards. The eq is worked nicely and things level off just when you want them to. Love disembodied voices in anything. Anonym's remix keeps a powerful kick and the stabs, but is a little bit more subtle. About half way through the track takes on a spacier dimension with the addition of a slightly discordant melody that eventually melts away. 'Farmacistul' uses a Marc Houle - inspired groove (only saying that because it reminds me of his Actual Jakshun remix on Minus a few years ago) and ploughs a disciplined, funky furrow. '20 Hours Left' falls into the category of tool, and while I like the voices, it's nine minutes of repetition. All good but use '20 Hours Left' sparingly.

Title: Lovin' EP
Artist: Ryo Murakami
Label: Morris Audio City Sport Edition
Cat Number:
Genre: House


'Beyond' is simple, understated funkiness. A mellow groove saunters along not giving a toss while a croaky voice punctuates proceedings saying what sounds like "night . . .fall." 'Swing' is what Mike Dixon should have sounded like at the turn of the century, instead he made a load of old shite that sounded like "Doop!" on uppers. 'Voices' is the moodiest cut here, and the least complicated. Some bongoes occasionally tumble over a bass-heavy groove while in the background you can here a muffled loop that sounds like a busy pub. Pick of the bunch has to be 'Beyond' but this is a solid release that sounds very sure of itself.

Title: Fiends And Family Vol 2
Artist: Various
Label: FVF
Cat Number:

1.QiK - Undead
2. Lado - Fog
3. Donk Boys - Biscotti
4. Alexx Wolfe & Sabb - Golden Snake
5. E C 5 0 - Dave Edmonds
6. Reagen - Monster Singer
7. Pheek - Williamsburgh Android
8. Siphon - Ich Mag Sie
9. Hoito - Fuori
10. Metrotek - Couchlock
11. Sjaakflut - Combination 2
12. Station F – Recovery

Dublin-based FVF Records' largest release to date sees them capitalising on the momentum gained by Siphon, Lado and Metrotek's recent releases. The label has carved out a nice little niche for itself by concentrating on the housier, more off-kilter side of techno and this compilation showcases their sound nicely. Without giving a blow-by-blow account of each and every track it's fair to say that the craftsmanship is of a high standard throughout and, although it can get a bit too glitchy at times it's always interesting. The Donk Boys, Pheek, Lado a stand out but it's a package that attains a homogenous high standard. Lovely!

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