Substantial Bay Area house overview from the Northwest/LA-based Ecstasy crew. The title track is a hypno-house epic with subtle drum programming and atmosphere which belies C.L.A.W.S.' day job as the drummer in RVNG Intl. act Bronze. "John Hetero" plays the convincing diva over the classy Fingers Inc./Gottsching influenced arrangement. 100% Silk mainstay Bobby Browser turns in an excellent rework of the track which sounds like an unremembered Hacienda classic. "It's Tragic" keeps the quality level high with a psychedelic hardware jam enveloping the descending bassline. John Barera takes the track to big room territory.
Buy That Magik
Rosite 12"/Fear Eats the Soul 12"
L.I.E.S. seems intent on doubling-down on 2012's breakneck release schedule - 2013's first quarter has seen five new releases. Impressively, the label has worked with all new producers for these initial shots. Here we have an introduction to 24-year old San Francisco (via U.K.) producer Oliver Vereker. Getting the cosign is one thing, but here we have two 12-inches, nearly an album's worth of bleak material from the upstart. From the moment "Rosite" starts, it's apparent Verker isn't f*cking around. Much of what's contained on the two 12 inches could be likened to an extremely corroded reading of Sandwell District's dark magic. This is brutalist techno at house tempos. "Rosite" contains EBM-like drum breaks against a maddening acid line. "Next" (off the "Fear Eats the Soul" 12-inch) builds a menacing atmosphere over a decayed, oscillating synth. For late night enduro-runs.
Buy Fear Eats the Soul
Test Pressing 001
Insane new 12 inch from the duo of old-media fanatics that comprise Demdike Stare. The opener, aptly titled "Collision" represents the unlikely meeting ground of Neubauten's precussive approach and a massive jungle breakbeat. The end result is a 80/160 bpm crusher that will stun even the most erudite genrehounds. The B-side continues down the unpredictable path, succeeding with a gamelan breakbeat that also uses birdsounds as a rhythmic element.
Buy Test Pressing 001
Dope new three-tracker from the Italian house veteran. The title track bears a heavy Burell Bros. influence, treating a sublime Rhodes progression with reverb while toms and subtle bongos fill-out the perfect deep house track. For the warm-up or relaxed early morning hours. On his remix, the prolific Nicholas bangs it out with a driven kick drum and late night bassline. "You Treat Me Right" marries the aforementioned Nu Groove aesthetic with low-slung bass and party samples recalling Motor City Drum Ensemble.
The second release from UK producer, The Cyclist, is a cohesive, sprawling statement with a 1,000-yard stare. , the sound swings from childhood standup pianos, to vaporwave/Oneohtrix-inspired nostalgia, to autobahn idealism and dark room pulse. The end result is not a trainspotter's paradise, rather an oddly emotional album. From his bedroom to yours.
New release from the prolific Tad Mullinix finds the producer more comfortable than ever with melody, while refusing to abandon his more asocial impulses. Opener "South Brooks" is a prime example of this balance. Here, JTC places accomplished deep house against a rubber band synth that could have been used on an early Robert Armani banger. "Creal" floats a classic Detroit progression before dropping into odd atmopheric work over a hopscotch bassline. Closer "Gallup" has JTC playing a beautiful, minimal synth solo over Terry Riley-esque inspired organ. Beautiful stuff.
The latest in Studio Barnhus' split color 10" series finds the idiosyncratic label showcasing two newer producers and covering a stunning amount of ground for a small record. Boska kicks things off with the Moog-driven "British Funk Museum No. 808". Boska proves he has a knack for rhythm as well as melodic chops, unleashing a beautiful synth progression for the track's melodic apex. The b-side, "Theme Song" by Pedrodollar is unlike any track I've heard, and it's amazing. Imagine pre-teen MJ emoting over a music box melody with Joe Meek behind the board. No drums to speak of on this track, yet your heart (and perhaps your hips) will sway.
Shakarchi & Stranéus
Cool new release from Malmo's newish Geography records, Shakarchi & Stranéus' second appearance on the label. The tracks combine the exuberance of the best French filter-house; deft Detroit-influenced sample work and Border Communiy-style emotional progressions. Opener "Either Way" is the obvious floor-filler here, filtering a lyrical synth line to maximum effect. The irresistable house track that builds upon the aforementioned synth's promise is pristine, but the record also possesses an endearing homemade quality.
New/Restocked This Week
Andres 'New For U' 12'
Dust "Past Future" 12"
Scott Grooves "Bitter Sweet" 12"
Omar-S "Thank You For Letting Me Be Myself" CD
Andres / Mike Grant "Moods And Grooves Classics v1" 12"
Nina Kraviz "Marcellus Pittman and Urban Tribe Remixes" 12"
Andrew Ashong 'Flowers EP' 12'
Brand New Heavies/SELF TITLED (180g) LP
Brand New Heavies/HEAVY RHYME VOL. 1 LP
Coki/BOBS PILLOW 12"
Psychemagik/SYSTEMATIC LOVER 12"
Maxxi Soundsystem/STELLA'S WAY 12"
Ozone/WALK ON & SEND IT CD
Kingdom/VIP EDITION EP 12"
Clubroot/CLUBROOT III-MMXII DLP +CD
Amit/KILLER DRILLER 12"
Various/GENESIS EP PT. 4 D12"
Paris Underground/VOL 1-REMASTERED 12"
Various/HOSPITALITY D&B 2012 (MIXED) CD
High Contrast/AGONY & THE ECSTASY CD
Various/HOSPITALITY D&B 2013 CD
Nu:Logic/MORNING LIGHT 12"
Psychemagik/LUNAR ESCAPE EP 12"
Shoes/IT'S A SHOE DAY 12"
Sade/BALEARIC SOUND OF... 12"
Whitney Houston/BEST OF WHITNEY LP
Volta Cab/MADISON AT THE BLUE LAGOON 12"
Simoncino/OPEN YOUR EYES DLP
Woolfy/JUNIOR'S THROWN CRAZE 12"
Wilkinson/TAKE YOU HIGHER 12"
Rob Black/BOSS THE RIPPER 7"
Thievery Corp/EL PUEBLO MIGS DUBS 12"
Tugboat Edits/VOLUME 1 - TZ EDITS 12"