Another month in techno wonderland as seen through the eyes of our resident technosseur...
The Jaydes - Step On Light - Dame Music
Release date: 28/10/13
There is clear excitement from Bloody Mary and Attan when it comes to their new project "The Jaydes". A forthcoming album, due out February 2014, has seen them locked in the studio at all hours getting the most out of their drum machines and synthesisers. So it's an exciting first taste of what we can expect from The Jaydes with "Step On Light", a house record so dripping with class it should be served up on a golden platter at the Berlin ambassador's warehouse.
The drum machines are the star of the show, right from the off rhythmic hi-hat patterns flutter across syncopated bass before rich warm chords overlap. As the hats subside we are treated to fist pumping, open filtered pads before the refrain and the heads down, energetic rhythms return. It's dark and extremely moody, a surefire club hit that sounds wonderfully analogue. The arrangement does not surprise, it is however very functional, sounding very much like a live jam. This gives the music a human quality that is ever more welcome in this era of throwaway EDM producers and their unimaginative laptop arrangements.
As an introduction to the Jaydes this is a strong one and definitely one which bodes well for the forthcoming album which I am really looking forward to hearing. Great stuff from Dame Music once again.
Mike Gill & Taymor Zadeh - Coppin' A Feel EP feat. John Dimas Remix - Roots For Bloom
Release date: Out now
The sixth release on Jamie Trench's highly regarded Roots For Bloom imprint see's Mike Gill and Taymor Zadeh take the reins with a dubbed out, underground deep house ep strong on groove.
"Coppin' A Feel" seeps it's low-fi vocal through a big claps, skippy snare patterns and a bouncing, heavy bass line. The vocal is almost inaudible in terms of the lyrics but still manages to be catchy, one that will be mouthed along to inaccurately on the dance floor perhaps.
"The Message" has a real French vibe to it, instantly remennisant of Djebali and Apollonia, it's no wonder it's been picked up by Dyed (Sondorom) who recently dropped it in Panorama bar. The bass line is pure funk, rotating gloriously and continuously, the beat never subsiding, just carrying everything along nicely. Kerri Chandler-esque chords sweep in and out. The vocal sample is deliciously slow and smokey, it really adds to the track rather than just being thrown on for the sake of it.
To top off this already strong EP is a remix from John Dimas, who seems to have hit a particularly rich vein of form of late. This remix does not disappoint, taking the drums up a notch and warming everything up. The vocal becomes twisted and warped, rim shots and bass work their magic while excitement simply builds and builds. The "alarm sounds" are clever in that they build tension, as does the emerging pads which filter in slowly. One for the late night heads.
Tom Demac & Will Samson - It Grows Again EP - AUS
Release date: 5th November
Aus's consistently strong and busy release schedule continues with this offering from Tom Demac and Will Samson. "It Grows" again substitutes dance floor weight for richly textured, glorious home listening. That's not to say the title track wouldn't work in a club environment, far from it, it's just that there is much more to this track than just a solid speaker busting, crowd pleasing banger would have to offer. The track's gorgeous vocal and continuous, low, rumbling bass is enriched by melodic yet subtle pads. It has a real "Innervisions" feel to it, indeed feeling like a record Dixon would reach for in one of his epic sets.
This is followed by the no less enjoyable, "Chasing Shadows" which ramps up the wonky keys, un-quantised, humanized stabs work well with the shuffling percussion to add swagger. It all works so well and is immediately rewarding to listen to although perhaps not as breathtaking as the title track. I do enjoy an inaudible vocal though, this has plenty of it!
The Formula remix adds toughness to the package, bringing heavier drums and, ultimately, real dance floor appeal for DJs looking for a more middle of the set roller. The vocal is used sparingly and the bass is given a notable resonance that has the potential to excite but falls short in my eyes. It's a little disappointing, almost boring (especially the breakdown) which is a shame as the originals are so good. Still this is well worth checking out and another on point release for Will Saul's label.
(Editor: Unfortunately no audio we can embed... FAO techno labels, please put clips on Soundcloud!!!)
Dense & Pika - Colt - Hotflush
Release date: 28th October
I have a real soft spot for Dense and Pika, they are really capturing a sound and style that is beginning to be appreciated more and more here in the UK. With previous releases they have showcased a stripped back, almost harsh interpretation of warehouse techno but with "Colt" they combine this with a sense of emotion and melody. "Colt" adds a new dimension to something usually so uncompromising. The simple piano melody over the typically uniform D & P analogue beats refreshes the style fans will be used to.
"Black Deep" immediately reverses any beautiful "hands in the air" imagery that "Colt" created and replaces them with snarling, angry bass gargles. The squelchy stabs, pounding kick drum and rabid vocal "YESSS" hiss and builds but it never goes over the top it just works it's magic. An absolute stomper.
"Vomee", which I believe means "vomit" in French (maybe that's unintentional but…) seems slow in pace but made my ears prick up more than the other tracks on my initial listen. It has some traditional techno stabs, sparse percussion and some great atmospherics all over it. It's the warped, seemingly random analogue bass teases that capture you the most, leading you into an oddly structured breakdown before all hell breaks loose. I love a good hi-hat and the 909 delivers in droves as wobbling, crackling bleeps and cut up, industrial noises add even more interest. I love this tune, can you tell?
There is one last treat on this EP, "Airless (Live)" gives you a slice of D & P performing something organically, something I love about their records anyway. There is a sense of unpredictability and joy that comes from the way they work their machines and it shines through here and throughout the entire record. Essential.
TLR002 - VA 1 - Tough Luck Records
Release date: 18th November
I wanted to take this opportunity to preview the next Tough Luck Records release. Initially a 4 track Vinyl VA with a further 4 tracks to be released later on as part of the digital package, the release showcases some of the new talent the label has to offer. Ocu from Italy, Adrian Fairless, Freeman and Farrelly and HoH all from the UK. You can check the release out below.
Agree with my selection(s) this month? Anything I've missed, or anything that I should be checking out for next? Get in touch via firstname.lastname@example.org or hit me via @jonnyRebel_uk on Twitter.