Author Archive: Jean-Robert Saintil

Pezzner, The Tracks Are Alive EP

On The Tracks Are Alive EP, the first taken from his debut album of the same name, Pezzner gets sit back and be remixed by Rozzo, Ryo Murakami, and Jay Shepheard.

Soul Clap, Action Satisfaction

Soul Clap’s Action Satisfaction shows just how far this duo has come in a relatively short amount of time, further refining the sample-centered house sound to which they’ve cottoned on.

Kirmann & Hodge, Piano Interrupted

For their third release, Lobe Records looks to Kirmann as he takes his music to a rather beautiful and contemplative place with the help of experimental pianist Tom Hodge.

Stimming, Ben Watt & Julia Biel, Bright Star

Coming on like some kind of disparate super group, the Bright Star EP brings together Hamburg-based producer Stimming; the owner of Buzzin’ Fly, producer for ’90s act du jour Everything But The Girl and man behind legendary London party Lazy Dog, Ben Watt; and the vocal talents of jazzy singer Julia Biel. With this much talent you might expect sparks to fly — or fizzle.

Curator’s Cuts 06: Jean-Robert Saintil

LWE’s Curator’s Cuts podcast series features our reviewing staff mixing together recent favorites and providing explanations for their selections. Contributing writer Jean-Robert Saintil was in charge of putting together Curator’s Cuts 06. We will post the tracklist later in the week, as each curator discloses and describes the tracklist as part of the podcast.

Michoacan, In The Dark Of The Night

San Francisco-based Michoacan (aka Fernando Miranda Rios) is one of those artists who’ve thus far managed to make a pretty decent name for themselves while remaining mostly hidden from view. No real bio, a couple of Q&As dotted around but bar that, nada. Up until now, that is. Prior to this release Michoacan had been dropping a slew of low slung ’80s disco-pop on the likes of Lecktroluv and Grayhound Recordings, as well as dance floor-baiting cosmic disco cuts for Bear Funk or Tiny Sticks. But with In The Dark Of the Night the game has changed: DFA is involved, videos have been made, and buzz has been growing louder as the record creeps into springtime playlists and mixes.

Ilija Rudman, Call Me Tonight Remixes

Croatian disco DJ/producer Ilija Rudman first appeared on my radar back in early 2007 with the After Midnight EP on Love Is War. Its killer cut bore a distinctly different lean than many records at the time, sounding like a mix between Steve Kotey’s Bear Funk productions and LFO’s rather exceptional electro. By this time he’d been kicking around for a number of years, releasing tracks on his own Red Music as early as 2003. Since then Rudman has slowly risen through the ranks, courting remixes from the likes of Pete Herbert, The Revenge and Mark E over the years. The original “Call Me Tonight,” which dropped in February, was a sharp turn for the boogie — all slapped bass, cowbells and 808 drums. Here, however, he teams passes this joint to a few of his old friends for a workout.

Abe Duque, Following My Heart/Disco Lights

Some artists have the luck of being in vogue innumerable times in their career. This can be said especially for the acid loving techno chap Abe Duque. From his brief time as a keyboardist for NYC techno group Program 2 with Gene LeFosse and Victor Calderon in the early ’90s, through to his explosion into the clubs with oft acid soaked solo productions such as stone cold classics like “Champagne Days, Cocaine Nights” on his eponymous label and most notably the 2004 EP What Happened. Indeed, the latter EP was so influential that all three cuts (including “Disco Lights” which gets a retouch on this recent EP), tend to reappear in sets and mixes with an eerie regularity. This EP is simply an extension of his dumbfounding omnipresence.

Mike Monday, Yoppul

For the past decade the oft underrated U.K. producer Mike Monday has been busy dropping inspired remixes and tracks which range from understated to bleeding obvious. For those who know his style, the phrase “house music with a splash of humour” tends to ring pretty true. His tracks are all wonk and weirdness twinned with rudely competent production which befits an Oxford music production graduate. And as he’s found his releases on a number of labels of note, from Freerange, Simple, Buzzin Fly and even Om, it’s apparent that label owners are rather partial to his idiosyncratic take on house. This time it’s the Get Physical crew who buy into the Mike Monday experience with Yoppul on their Get Digital imprint. Once again it’s rather impressive, if not as memorable as his releases on Playtime.

Clement Meyer, Midnight Madness EP

Clement Meyer is somewhat of the youthful upstart. Emerging back in 2007 through Get The Curse, his influential electronic music blog focused on dirty house and electro, he’s seen his stock rise quicker than eco-energy. First earning a residency at hipster Parisian haunt Social Club, he’s since become an associate (and eventual co-owner) of Fondation Records with Danton Eeprom, lined up residencies at East London’s T Bar, and released the double A side Get The Curse on Seinan Music with apparent partner in crime Olibusta. Now he’s launched the Get the Curse Records imprint and begun its tenor with his own Midnight Madness EP. It’s not that this type of rise is unusual in the slightest, with cats such as Fredski from Tartlet Records, or fellow Social Club resident and infamous blogger for Fluokids, Casper C rising in a similar fashion. However, unlike some of his contemporaries, Clement’s music has a maturity that seems to reflect more than his age.

Joshua Iz, Vizual Rydims #2

Back in 2000 at the apogee of Classic Records and Music For Freaks, DJs and producers such as DJ Sneak, Justin Harris and of course Derick Carter were de rigour. The entire Chi-Town bent on boompty bass lines and a serious penchant for fun sounds, be it the unfortunately too short lived Charleston house sound exemplified by Greens Keepers’ “What’s Your Man Got To Do With Gan” (and check the Igloo Records and G-Swing imprints) to bells, whistles, meows and barks blew up dance floors and headphones. On the flip side there were the deeper house sounds of Chicago with Iz & Diz’s enduring “Mouth” on Classic and “If You Love It, Dub It” on Silver Network. That’s probably how you know Iz; these days he’s all about his new imprint Vizual Records, using it as a vehicle to release music across the gamut of electronic music from Jamaican dub to Detroit techno. As with many contemporary solo artist led imprints, all the initial releases have been by Iz himself, but they’ve not lacked diversity. After an honorary bow to boompty on the first Vizual Rydims release, he decided to take a slightly deeper, Detroit lean while attempting to retain a hint of breeze from the windy city.

Greg Wilson, Credit to the Edit 2

There’s something about the name Greg Wilson that tends to inspire awe in even the most hardened of musos: His legendary turns DJing and creating re-edits from reel to reel tapes through to spreading the sounds of electro-funk throughout Manchester via his 1983 residency at The Ha├žienda. That’s combined with his abandonment of DJing at his pinnacle to concentrate on producing the likes of the once timely Ruthless Rap Assassins and Yello. As one would expect, he made a rather loud return to the fray in early ’00s during the heady days of nu-disco, dropping the killer LP, Credit to The Edit, on Tirk. Consisting of hand cut edits a la 1983, one saw a number of tracks which harked back to the ’70s and ’80s. Cuts such as Chaka Khan’s “I Feel For You,” “I Can’t Turn The Boogie Loose” by the Controllers and “Rockers Revenge” all made an appearance, complete with the excellent, seams ‘n all cuts and bounces. The LP was such as classic that after speaking to one of the Tirk chaps, apparently it’s still shifting units today. CTTE 2, however, is something of a different breed — as if Wilson’s been fully updated with the contemporary technology and his forays back onto the dance floor have provided him with some new inspiration.

Lopazz & Zarook, Studiorevox Taperecordings

Former Output Records labelmate, Get Physical cohort and all round badboy Lopazz aka Stefan Eichinger and Italic records chap Eddie Zarook get back together after a slew of remixes to drop this sample ridden double A-side. And if you’ve not heard their wonky remix of Gus Gus’ “Add This Song,” I advise you do so — it jacks like a iron fist in a padded glove against a brick, sweat covered wall. They do it again here, and the producers’ respective styles complement each other perfectly with Lopazz’s somewhat warm in tone, house-fused vocal stylings together with Mr Zarook’s stripped back, near minimal techno leanings.

Various Artists, Significant Others Too

While out in Tokyo, I once read a review in which a DJ was described as playing “insidious house” due to his ability to get said reviewer from “happily sitting with a drink to dancing thirty minutes later without knowing what happened.” The kind of deep, warm groove ridden sound which creeps under your skin and is as conducive to listening as it is to shaking it on the floor. Unfortunately I forget the DJ referred to, but the term captures the trend which has been prominent during the past few years. Injecting soul and an infectious warmth back into house as an anathema to glacial minimal sound that came before it. And it is this non-pejorative, soul-infused “insidious house” which Wolf + Lamb have made their signature and stock in trade. This collection of new projects, first releases and previously digital only tracks sounds strangely more like an EP pulled from a Best Of compilation rather than a showcase — each of the tracks presenting themselves as dusted down nu classics. Even the title Significant Others Too bears the hallmarks of a quiet confidence Wolf + Lamb have created for themselves over the past four years.