Runaway, Brooklyn Club Jam

Illustration/book by Lisa Brown


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Taking after the piano-driven house of Still Going and Osborne, Runaway’s “Brooklyn Club Jam” starts with the same impetus but makes sure to contort itself. First released on Runaway’s Myspace page, the track was surprising almost to a fault; as a stream of an unreleased track, “Brooklyn Club Jam” sounded like it could (and more importantly, should) help the catalog of a number of labels. Months later, “Brooklyn Club Jam” has ended up on the REKIDS imprint, home of pummeling wide-screen epics and it doesn’t sound a bit out of place. For a group like Runaway, with a wurst-sized edit and single to their name, the journey from Myspace to REKIDS should’ve been improbable. But Runaway includes Jacques Renault, a member of DFA’s roster and one of the hardest-working DJs in New York, crowned best DJ of 2007 by NYC night-life guide Paper Magazine. As you could imagine, the success of “Brooklyn Club Jam” sounds less flash-panned than finely honed.

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The first thing you notice about “Brooklyn Club Jam” is how dry the drums sound, how the hi-hat fizzes, and how the rest of the track sounds soaked from a humid night. Not settling for instant melody like Osborne’s “Outta Sight,” Runaway takes the shimmer of the piano and cuts it into shards. Piano lines might still shine through but always refract when they reach the surface. The piano turns out to be a red herring after it peaks halfway through, letting the track dive back into an 909-churn. The balance of “Brooklyn Club Jam” is the best part of the track -– it never pigeonholes itself as dark, tribal, or uplifting house when it touches upon each sound. The L.S.B. remix streamlines the tease, introducing a meaty bassline, firm hi-hat and drum breakdown for the piano to play around. It’s a fine re-branding, but sounds far less nimble. Toby Tobias’ remix takes the alternative approach. He carves out the heart of the original – drums, piano, all but a shard of the melody — and finds how many angles he can hear a round of handclaps on top of the remains. It’s an idea, but the track never finds a structure to cling to.

OochyKoochy  on March 7, 2009 at 9:49 PM

Runaway RULES !

‘Brooklyn Club Jam’ is THE track of 2008 !

those men… THEY’RE THE REAL SHIT !

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