October 1999 Reviews
This month's guest reviewers are Scott Lazaruk and Thomas Robbs, a.k.a. ones & twos, a techno & house tag-team from Toronto, Canada. (Click on the link for contact & realaudio sets). The following are reviews of promotional material.Copyright © 1999 Scott Lazaruk & Thomas Robbs. Reprinted with permission.
(artist :: release :: label :: cat # )
September Techno/House Reviews
T e c h n o
Ghoti :: (self-titled) :: Woodwork Recordings :: WOOD1206
Ghoti is a new artist on Woodwork Recordings, a Toronto based imprint run by Peter Grove (aka Sunkissed). This release is somewhat more stark and minimal than other Woodwork releases, although still aimed firmly at the dancer. On the a-side is "Ironlung", a minimal techhouse track that oscillates in and out, with a gradual, constant progression of sounds and synth loops. The first b-side cut is Peter Grove's remix of "Ironlung", a fuller, more layered interpretation of the original that somehow manages to be deep and introspective, yet bumping and sizzling at the same time. The final cut is Neepawa, a very deep abstract track that will keep the techno snobs nodding. A nice variety of moods and textures that will find a place into most techno crates.
H o u s e
Matthaus :: Mouth Music EP :: Stickman Records :: STIK 068
Matt "M1" Dimaria lands on Toronto's Stickman Records with a full house arsenal. "Mouth Music" kicks things off with a tribal house feel using vocal snippits reminscent of "Din Da Da". A bonus beats track is also there for those armed with a second copy. Flip to the B-side and we get two varying filtered and funky house tracks. My pick is "Bedroom Gymnastics" which is a deep, funky, full-body work-out with a great groove.
Recloose :: Spelunking EP :: Planet E Records :: PE 65248
With his second release on Planet E, Matt Chicoine serves up a sweet piece of Detroit lovin' as Recloose. "Soul Clap 2000" opens up the EP, a lazy house track with shifting claps and a bassline that throws you into a wiggle. "Get There Tonight" works an inviting synth melody with a sultry breakbeat pattern and vocal snippits for the sexy dancefloors. "Landscaping" has a serious jazz appeal to it. Allowing only a bassline to try and make sense of things for you, Recloose takes you to many spectacular places, high and low. Closing out is "Insomnia in Dub", which is definitely for those sweet early a.m. moments - a clock's tick morphs its way into a late night journey through dubby beats. Solid love from the Planet E camp.
DJ Feelgood :: Fly :: F-111 Records
F-111 Records and DJ Feelgood bring us a test pressing of Feelgood's latest single, "Fly", featuring the original and a remix by the man behind Jinxx Recordings, Jason Jinx. The original hits me like a swimming pool of the elements of that filter-funk sound. You literally feel like you're swimming in the sound with the effects, filtering, and panning sounds. Jason Jinx drops a rough and ready bassline in for regularity and tweaks things just so with a cut-up vocal.
Bassment Jaxx :: Rendez-Vu :: XL Recordings :: XLT 110
Bassment Jaxx drop their latest single as a follow-up to their success with "Red Alert" on both sides of the Atlantic. Taken from their album entitled "Remedy", the title track "Rendez-Vu" pushes the Bassment Jaxx sound into a twisted vocal over a crazy guitar line that will send you into the madhouse. On the flip, "Miracles Keep on Playin'" (Red Alert Remix) is the Jaxx reworking of elements from "I Believe In Miracles" performed by The Jackson Sisters. With the vocals from their hit track dropping in, this one is jumpin' off the hook. BJ take us for a trip to the mental side with "All U Crazies", treating us with a hard tweaker full of feedback and vocals that dare you to dance.
Parliament of House :: The Returning :: Deep Touch Records :: DT 102
Deep Touch Records, a division of Sounds for People Records, brings us the sounds of Christian Kistler and Marc Zehnder in the form of "The Returning". The original and the dub work a heavy bass groove with synth stabs that give the track a spacious tech-house feel. Domenico Carluccio is featured on the flip side with his "DPN Club You Mix", bringing things a little more up front in the mix while still maintaining the same spacey feel in the track. Maurice Knight closes out the 12" with his "NiteStart Version" which ruffs things up with harder beats, a drop in the atmospheric feel, and a cut-up sample.
Calico :: The Basic Funk EP :: Deep Touch Records :: DT 103
Christian Lappalainen brings us this 4 track EP under the Calico moniker on the Deep Touch label. As you would expect from this label, this 12" is full of deep, pumping house. All four tracks on this EP work that rich jazzy house groove with a different overall ride and destination. Solid beats and sweet melodies are the recipe for this one.
Timeline :: Clockwork Orange :: Yoshitoshi Recordings :: YR 039
Yoshitoshi has been on a mission with consistantly solid releases. Christian Smith and Lucas Rodenbush (aka E.B.E.) keep things rolling with the release of "Clockwork Orange"/"Perpetual". The title track is down right subliminal. With a heavy bass and a wash of effects over the high end, this makes for a deep and smooth ride. "Perpetual" is a steady build from start to finish, all with a deep and heavy hitting feel. Synth stabs work in and out of the beats and only let up to lay down another piece of the puzzle.