Monday, March 22, 2010

Reviews, Reviews, Reviews

Title: Halal Prepared Vol 1
Artist: VA
Label: Boe
Cat Number: BOE007
Genre: House

A1: Kiss The Sky - Kink
A2: Back Up - Iron Curtis
B1: Diamond - Ladzinski

Deep house just how I like it, with a kick and synthesis. Kink won't lose any of the new friends he's recently made with the impressive knee-in-the-bollocks funk of 'Kiss The Sky.' It's a game of two halves this one. Swirling Detroit-influenced synths, tinkling, spaced-out keys and that rimshot-driven percussion, so beloved of the seasoned warehouse party goer. 'Back Up' is a rougher cut, bogged down by thick synthetic squelches. This is no bad thing as a tense, stressed situation is created that makes the inevitable release feel all the better. Finally, Ladzinski rounds things off nicely, picking up the baton from Iron Curtis with renewed momentum with a hypnotic groover destined to take you clear through to the other side. For a perfect example of how depth can be a dancefloor weapon, look no further.

Title: Hush EP
Artist: Jimmy Edgar
Label: Glass Table
Cat Number:
Genre: Esoteric

Hush (Kyle's Detroit Retro Metro mix)

The first release from Hypercolour offshoot Glass Table, sees Detroit native Jimmy Edgar behind two slo-mo pieces of fragmentary disco ambience characterised by eponymous repetitive female vocals. Both OK in their own right, but both leaving you slightly underfed and dissatisfied. A little extra helping next time please Mr Edgar, even if it wasn't originally the point. The same cannot be said of current flavour of the month Kyle Hall. He can be very abstract and, dare I say, noodly, can Hall, but his remix of 'Hush' pushes all the right buttons and then some. Recognisably Detroit and very much on a house tip, this is still idiosyncratic enough to be refreshingly original. Lovely bass..

Title: Joint Custody EP
Artist: Gadi Mizrahi & Soul Clap
Label: Double Standard
Cat Number: DS01
Genre: House

A1: So Addicted To You - Gadi Mizrahi
A2: Yer Body (Kills Me) - Gadi Mizrahi & Soul Clap
B1: Funk Sex - Soul Clap
B2: Romantic Comedy - Gadi Maizrahi & Soul Clap

A vinyl-only release, the download of which was ripped from said plastic, all of which serves to envelop the sound in what can only be described as self-conscious analogue warmth. Whether this was intentional from the outset is neither here nor there. All good in any case as this release couldn't be more typical of the whole Wolf & Lamb/Soul Clap sound if it tried. Heaven forbid pigeonholing, or stereotyping, which is why I've referred to this release as very definitely house, rather than re-edits or a reinvention of the sensual, libidinous slowie, that end-of-night dance when you step up with your best girl and let the whole place know you're together. Maybe I'm saying that because the last time I ever indulged in such foreplay was a while back, when these tracks probably took their initial inspiration. In any case this is a good release, and has four tracks each diverse enough to make a difference on their respective floors or respective times. Nothing new as such, but reverent hands have been at work, and it shows.

Title: Soul Skool EP
Artist: Subb-an
Label: One Records
Cat Number: ONE003
Genre: House

A1: Soul Skool
B1: Soul Skool (Shaun Reeves remix)
B2: Tool 01
B3: Tool 02

It's a nice touch to incorporate tools into a release, but are they really necessary in this day and age of digital DJing and endless loops? One Records obviously think so, as this type of surprise has characterised all of their releases so far. I was reasonably impressed with Subb-an's first release on the label, 'The Musik' a lot less so with the second release by Little Fritter. This is, in its original form, a good old heads-down no-nonsense tech-house banger, driven forward by an insistent bass, subtle percussion and a gospel-inflected vocal. You can't go wrong with this. Shaun Reeves' remix slows things down and emphasises the bass so it throbs. Nice handclaps too. Things are a little bit spacier and dubbier and it's a decent rework.

Title: Your Reference To Positional Stability
Artist: Retail & Leisure
Label: Retail & Leisure
Cat Number: RNL001
Genre: Techno

A1: Your Reference To Positional Stability
B1: Your Reference To Positional Stability (Adrian Ross Augment)
B2: Track 3

City Centre Offices, Sandwell District, Forward Strategy Group and now Retail & Leisure. There are doubtless others who use technically obscure, and shadowy business/ council monikers to create an atmosphere of insect menace, but I can't be arsed looking them all up now. The title as well 'Your Reference To Positional Stability' creates an instant feeling of intrepidation before the record has even reached the turntable. Taking its cues from Axis, this track takes its inspiration from, amongst others, the mighty 'Growth' and goes forth to reside in a nether world of swirling winds and disembodied voices. The 'Adrian Ross Augment' doesn't, as its name suggests, improve on the original, just turns it into a bouncy, industrial symphony of of controlled discord. 'Track 3', so good they couldn't think of a name for it, is paced similarly to the 'Augment' and is a sparse accompaniment to a night in the sweatshop, making cheap clothes to dress people with no style. Ominous and fascinating.

No comments: