November was another excellent month for music of all genres and tempos, with releases coming thick and fast. As ever our diligent team of staff writers have whittled down the deluge of material on offer in to a nice bite size chunk for your listening pleasure on this month’s installment of ‘Pick-Your-Own’. Smoothed out Deep House, Future Grime-Trap hybrids and Acid inflected tech all feature as part of the cream of this rather tidy crop. Check it out…
Visionist – ‘M’/’Secrets’ (Ramp Recordings)
Grime and Techno have come together more than ever before this year, but not quite like this. Unlike Pearson Sound and Kowton’s aggy hybrids, these two tracks channel the eerie sound of grime into streamlined, melodic 4×4.
Point G – #3 ( Self-released )
DJ Gregory is onto a real winner re-visiting his short-lived Point G moniker. The third in a new series of self-released records is a double pack, consisting of four stripped-back house/garage crossovers equipped for peak-time play. They’re more subtle than ‘Braka’, the underground hit from Point G #2, but worthy of all the same attention.
Kyle Hall – Skeeter (Wild Oats)
If someone told you that a quality track could be made sampling the theme tune of a distinctly average early 00s Nickelodeon TV show centring around a puppet inexplicably co-existing with humans, you’d probably think they’d gone a bit mad. But lo and behold, Kyle Hall has stepped up to the plate with Skeeter, taking the RnB strains of the eponymous lead character’s entrance theme and turning it into a smooth as anything deep house excursion. It’s part of the follow up 12″ from Hall’s excellent first LP, The Boat Party, which managed to be a house album that didn’t bore me to tears, something of a rarity.
Pender Street Steppers – Life in the Zone (Mood Hut)
Tape-only release of what I believe to be a mix of 100% original material from Canada’s Pender Street Steppers and boy is it good. If this lot have this depth and breadth of quality at such an early stage in their production careers, you can guarantee they’re going to be ones to watch for the future. Warm and soulful trax that sound like they come straight out of the mid-90s, all in the best possible way. BOMB.
Chord Marauders – Groove Booty Vol II (Chord Marauders)
It was Congi, Geode and B9’s track ‘She’ that lead me to this compilation. A seriously consistent collection fronted by the Chord Marauders, made up by the aforementioned along with Jafu, this one’s an exercise in the clean, subtle side of dubstep and focuses heavily on melody. After you’ve bathed in the second, check Groove Booty Vol I.
Neville Watson – ‘Hot & Heavy’ EP ( DBA Special Editions )
It was only a matter of time before Neville released a full 12″ for DBA. After providing the label with one of their most requested tracks, in the form of a remix of Semtek’s ‘Lotus Eaters’, it’s unsurprising that Mr. Watson has been asked back to supply the goods for the second in their DBA special editions series. This one is directed straight to the dance-floor and takes an interesting route away from Watson’s usually outgoings, definitely more for the techno terry’s. ‘Wired’ is a must to check…straight banger.
DJ Haus – Addicted 2 Hauz ( Hot Haus Recs )
Feeling rather underwhelmed by the recent Bicep EP, I had to look elsewhere for my fix of good times retro-styled House music last month. Thankfully Unknown To The Unknown label head DJ Haus was on hand with this, from his forthcoming ‘Thug Houz Anthems Vol. 2: Addicted 2 Houz’ EP ( out December 18th, available to stream in full now here ), a bumping organ driven beast thats laid a late claim for the title of most jackin’ tune of the year. Any tune called ‘Addicted 2 Houz’ isn’t going to win any prizes for originality, nor should it try. Rather this cut finds DJ Haus on vital form where many less competent producers have come across sounding turgid and derivative. Top drawer stuff, with a typically excellent video to boot, that puts DJ Haus in the lofty bracket occupied by the likes of My Love Is Underground and Bicep ( on their better days ).
Evian Christ – Salt Carousel ( Tri Angle )
Rather than wear his ‘Yeezus’ production around his neck like an albatross of expectation, it would appear British beat maker Evian Christ has taken a jolt of confidence from his new found fame. Eschewing the vague air of stoned restraint the previously characterised many of his tracks, ‘Salt Carousel’ finds Evian Christ adopting an aggresively maximalist approach-and it suits him. Bass drops arrive with seismic force, rave synths pierce the ether like Diamond Cutters and Drums clap hard as just about anything out there. When one of the hazy interludes of old arrives, its merely a pause before another ground shattering drop. A preview of his ‘Waterfall’ EP on Tri Angle next year, don’t be in the least bit surprised to find this guy orbiting the same stratosphere as Hudson Mohawke at some point in the near future.
Logos – ‘E3 Night Flight’ ( Keysound )
As evidenced by his extraordinary debut LP ‘Cold Mission’, Logos’ penchant for re-contextualising raw grime aesthetics is unmatched, but it’s the whimsical, mystical chimes of ‘E3 Night Flight’ that really stand out for me. It’s like an oasis of calm nestled in amongst the restless heat and unabashed power of tracks like ‘Seawolf’ and ‘Menace’; think of it as a some sort of weirdly intriguing, super unconventional lullaby. Stunning.
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Dark0 – ‘Sweet Boy Pose’
Dark0 is certainly going to be one to watch in 2014 but for the time being, his recently released ‘I Ain’t A Sweetboy’ EP is making all the right noises. The playful, synth-rich ‘Sweet Boy Pose’ is my pick; full to the brim with swirling, romanticised melodies and underpinned by killer neck-snap snares, it’s quite honestly, just a really enjoyable listen. Great stuff.