Promotional Reviews February 2015

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Happy New Year TBC followers, this is our second and very belated post for 2015. Apologies for the delay but with the festive period, a busy January and a disrupted February we have been unable to publish anything new until now. ‘Quality not quantity’ and ‘patience is a virtue’ are both sayings that come to mind in this time and fear not as we are bringing you a brand new promotional article now and this will be followed shortly by the end of year playlist for 2014 as well as our ‘Best Of’ 2014 article. This coupled with a very active 2015 for new music and you will see a lot of activity over the next month or so.

This article is being brought to you by a one armed, lame TBC writer as I unfortunately fell victim to the icey conditions in Sheffield in January. I slipped and managed to break my shoulder resulting in a long lay off, currently 3 weeks but due to be 4/5 in total, and extended rehab spanning a few months! It wasn’t pretty and I would not wish this injury on anybody. It hasn’t been nice, the pain has been bad and the partial lack of use in my left arm is frustrating. On the positive side I have had plenty of time to listen to music including an array of new promotional material from One Records, Eskimo Recordings, Culprit Records, Hot Creations, International Feel, Crosstown Rebels, Firehouse, Viva Music, Hot Trax, Rebellion and BLDG5 Records. I have also had access to plenty of pain killers to take the edge off so every cloud and all that. I hope you enjoy the article, the structure will be a short review for each of the 13 records and I will then select the TBC top 5 with a favourite which will get some extra write up.

This article has been a joy to write and we have enjoyed listening to the new records from artists such as Subb-An who recently completed his Essential Mix on BBC 1 and two great offerings from one of our favourite labels Eskimo Recordings. Skream also chips in with a new release – he has become an interesting prospect in the house and techno scene since his transition from dubstep. All this plus an array of new artists that have excited and entertained us at TBC HQ over the last few weeks.

Subb-An – Warp (One Records) 

Two great tracks on this EP; Warp and TV. Bass heavy, chunky tech-house with the A-side Warp focusing on a more stripped down groove and bassline while the B-side TV really excelling with its reverberating bassline and haunting vocals from Jacob Phono. This is Subb-An’s first release on the label he co-founded. Great first release and looking forward to the next one already.

Du Tonc – Every Song (Eskimo Recordings)

What you come to expect from Eskimo Recordings; they have such a nose for artists that deliver their signature sounds and with such a timeless quality. Du Tonc provides an uplifting summery pop/disco track with a great male vocal. Reminiscent of an Aeroplane/MGMT track which is testament to how good this track is. The only downside is that this is a single track release only.

Maxxi Soundsystem – Medicine EP feat. Name One (Culprit Records)

Culprit have a great array of artists who have featured over recent years; Lee Curtiss, Adriatique, Shonky, Subb-An and Hot Natured. Droog, a collective of DJ’s, have done a great job in developing their label. Uk based Maxxi Soundystem provides a three track release for Culprit titled the Medicine EP.The tracks sit in a nu-disco, house genre with a great vocal on each track from Name One. The title track is the standout track with wonky disco/electro infused house that accompany the vocal perfectly.

Denney – Pimp Out (Hot Creations) 

This is a two track release from Denney on Hot Creations (always such a busy record label) with Pimp Out. The title track is a catchy, nice paced and infectious house track that verges on G-House with its ghetto feel. There is even time for some acid house samples to leave this track sounding slightly old school-esque. The B-side Low Frequency has a slightly slower pace but where it slows down it adds groove and a superb acid squelch. The vocal is far more ghetto which again leaves this house near the G-House genre. Overall a great release from Denney and we could imagine dancing away to this one at Kater Blau in Berlin.

Satin Jackets – Shine on You (Eskimo Recordings)

As with Du Tonc Every Song, Eskimo Recordings are able to churn out quality disco and house with ease. Satin Jackets are stalwarts for Eskimo featuring on the label for a few years now and Shine On You doesn’t disappoint. This is a 5 track release of Shine On You and remixes: Radio, Original, Mighty Mouse, Ben Macklin Remix & Dub Remix. Ester’s vocals are perfect for this uplifting, summery, emotional and atmospheric pop/disco track. Mighty Mouse chips in with a more energetic and club ready remix while Ben Macklin slows things down to create a remix that oozes disco sophistication.

Double Knots – Double Vision EP (International Feel)

“Imagine Tangerine Dream soundtracking Miami Vice through Todd Terje’s ears” is the summary of this EP on the press release, nuff said. This is a three track release, on International Feel who specialise in the more alternative side to electronic music, from Double Knots. Each track is slow, atmospheric, cosmic disco that seems to come from a film score which is testament to the production quality on offer here. Its hard to pick a favourite but I would say the title track Double Vision mixed by Toby Tobias as it reminds us of a DJ Supermarkt Too Slow To Disco track, lets see those disco fingers!

Skream – Still Lemonade (Crosstown Rebels) 

Crosstown Rebels, as Hot Creations above, continue to churn out quality releases. This time Skream offers his Still Lemonade track with a remix from Redshape on the B-side. Skream’s transition to house and techno from dubstep shows that a quality producer can perform in any genre of music. The original is a progressive techno stormer which builds to an electro infused breakdown. The bassline, drums and synths are epic. The Redshape remix cranks it up a notch and leads the track into a more full on techno track with a thunderous grumbly bass.

https://soundcloud.com/factmag/skream-still-lemonade-redshape-remix

Kim Ann Foxman – Firehouse 002 

The second release on Kim Ann Foxman’s new record label Firehouse and Kim delivers more solid house production as she develops her style since pursuing a solo career outside Hercules & The Love Affair. A 5 track release, Open The House with 2 remixes from Eli Escobar, The Lady is a Vamp and Eye See Me. The Eli Escobar remix is the stand out track as it spices up the house formula to provide an uplifting feel with strong beats, key and percussion. The Lady is a Vamp is a quirky B-side with freak show-esque horror sounds and effects. Eye See Me completes the diverse record with a cosmic, futuristic sounding progressive track with a nice breakdown.

Mark Jenkyns feat. MC Chickaboo – On Me (Hot Creations) 

This is yet another Hot Creation release and another quality one at that. Mark Jenkyns provides us with a 4 track release named On Me which has 3 iterations; original, club tweak and Skream remix plus Like This. The vocal is the standout element to this track courtesy of MC Chickaboo. The Skream remix is the best of the 3, providing a club ready, well produced and polished track remix. The remix builds and develops around the vocal perfectly with an excellent breakdown for the dance floor.

Monday Club – Blackout (VIVa Music) 

Steve Lawler’s record label provides the next release from Monday Club who are Luke May and Paul Sidoli. They have been on the electronic music scene for some time and are a duo of high calibre. Blackout is a 5 track release; Blackout has two mixes (one from the recent on form Luke Solomon), Footprints and Girls Jacking. The theme for this record is ‘Accciieeeed’ and lots of it. Each track features the signature acid house sounds and squelches. Blackout has an old Speak and Spell computer vocal, Footprints is rave with a great male vocal and Girls Jacking is the most party track and does exactly what is says on the tin ‘jack’. Hard to pick a favourite as each is a solid release, the Solomon remix was not his best and doesn’t take Blackout to a new level, shame.

Raumakustik – Raider (Hot Trax)

Hot Trax is a sub-label for Hot Creations to release some tougher techno style tracks and Raumakustik provides Raider with a remix by the head honcho at Hot Creations Jamie Jones. The original is a marching tech-house track with heavy drums and effects that build, warp and reverberate the dance floor or speakers or both. Jamie Jones provides a tougher take on the track more towards techno focusing on the key elements of the track to produce a more bass heavy, sub-shaking track.

Dino Lenny – Dont Believe (Rebellion)

Another sub-label this time for Crosstown Rebels and Dino Lenny who has 90’s notoriety from remixing INXS, Underworld, Missy Elliot & Timbaland. He steps up with his newest production Don’t Believe. A two track release with Plastic Man on the B-side which is right up the street of Maceo Plex or Ten Walls which means this track is one that TBC like. The A-side is deep, progressive with haunting vocals and roaring chords that create a sinister sounding track. The B-side is dark and moody with keys that provide a ‘wub…wub….wub”  throughout. Progressive again in style with an array of effects, sounds and vocals. Couldn’t choose between the two as they are both excellent productions.

Garden City Movement – Modern West EP (BLDG5 Records)

The most alternative music offering of this article and to be honest it wasn’t strictly TBC material but we are always open to new music. Garden City Movement are an alternative urban group who produce experimental, urban sounding, dubstep,grime and pop crossover. A five track release with the title track being the weakest offering as it was just too cheesy. Each of the other 4 tracks were interesting with uplifting dubby track Rebellion and an alternative disco track with balearic sounds called My Only Love. Sorting Things Out was a crackly hubby number with nice percussion and beats while When We Had It Easy provides a broken beat pop record. Sorting Things Out was probably our favourite but the whole record was a nice alternative offering.

Our Top Five, in no particular order:

  1. Subb-An – Warp (One Records)
  2. Denney – Pimp Out (Hot Creations)
  3. Skream – Still Lemonade (Crosstown Rebels) 
  4. Mark Jenkyns feat. MC Chickaboo – On Me (Hot Creations)
  5. Monday Club – Blackout (VIVa Music)

Just choosing a top five has been difficult as there are some great records covered in this article. Dino Lenny’s Don’t Believe and the Eskimo Recordings releases were very close to squeezing in. Unfortunately we had to shortlist otherwise we would just be selecting every release from the 13 which is not only lazy but a failing when writing up a review article. In the shortlist we have a great Subb-An record on One Records (who were kind enough to share this promo release with us). He has been on a roll recently with his Essential Mix on BBC that was well received – we are sure he will have a good 2015. Denny is a new artist to TBC but his sound isn’t and this release is a great addition to our G-House collection, we can’t fault a good G-House record as we have become hooked since discovering the genre last year via Amine Edge and Dance’s Essential Mix and our experience at Kater Haus in Kater Blau, Berlin. Skream provides a sample of his upcoming album, which is to be released via Damian Lazarus’s Crosstown Rebels label, with Still Lemonade. This is a well produced club stormer with a great remix from Redshape, we challenge you not to be impressed with this record and we can’t wait to hear it out in a club. Mark Jenkyns is another newbie to TBC but MC Chickaboo isn’t as she featured on one of my all time favourite songs by Timo Maas which I loved so much back in the day I even invented a dance called the ‘Shifter’, I am not joking! On Me and Like This are great tracks plus the Skream remix is superb, he is on a roll at the moment. Monday Club was the surprise of the bunch as we weren’t expecting much from this one but it has provided the most fun at TBC HQ with the warehouse rave tracks, great acid house style and quirky effects, vocals etc. including the excellent ‘Speak & Spell’ vocal effect on Blackout which is so retro its excellent.

As you can tell from the positive words above selecting a favourite is difficult and to be honest has divided opinion at TBC HQ as it is between Monday Club and Skream and both are excellent. The remaining entries in the shortlist have to be commended and it is great to see such a great selection of new tracks from just the 13 we have been lucky enough to review. Having spent a great deal of time listening to each of the favourites we had to go with Monday Clubs latest EP Blackout. The duo have created a superb 5 track EP that captures the Acid sound and warehouse party vibe perfectly. Each track would be well received at a party but could be equally enjoyed at home on a nice bassy sound system. The reason this release sets itself apart from Skream’s release, only just mind you, is that Monday Club deliver on three different tracks and even throw in a Luke Solomon stripped back remix along with an Acapella mix for good measure. It isn’t often an EP provides entertainment from start to finish so not only is this the best release it is also the one with the best value for money. Please have a look at Monday Club’s Soundcloud page below and check out Blackout once it is released, unfortunately there isn’t a streaming link we can offer currently.

Congratulations to Monday Club – Blackout (VIVa Music)

soundcloud.com/mondayclubmusic

Many thanks for reading and we hoped that you enjoyed. We will be back soon with more on TBC.

We would like to thanks Maouris, One Records and all of the individual record labels mentioned above for the opportunity to review their latest releases.

Nick

Maouris Promotional Reviews – January 2015

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This will be our third promotional review linked with Maouris promotions and we are grateful for the opportunity to listen to and review their latest releases. This time we have been fortunate to have access to 15 of their latest single/EP releases from November/December 2014 and January 2015 which have ranged from blissed out electronica to techno including some disco, house and electro. The format of this review will be a brief summary of the releases, labels and tracks followed by a more in depth review of the best three releases from which we will select our favourite release.

We were kindly informed by the Maouris team that our access would include a greater range of labels this time round including; Visionquest, Rebellion, Hot Creations, International Feel, Crosstown Rebels, Eskimo Recordings, Soul Clap Records, Firehouse Recordings (Kim Ann Foxman’s new label), BOSO (Mario Basanov/Ten Walls label), Play It Say It (Seth Troxler’s label) and boy were we pleased to have such great access to this cross section of the electronic music market. A great deal of time has been spent listening, repeat listening, researching and providing our feedback to Maouris, now it is time for us to spread the joy to our followers and friends at TBC. The artists which featured along with their release title, record label and short summary are listed below:

  • Jay Haze – The Mulatar House (Soul Clap Records) – This EP features the bizarre and interesting Mulatar 3 sided string instrument which provides the foundation for the three tracks. Wonky, dreamy, balearic sum up this release.
  • Kim Ann Foxman – Firehouse 001 (Firehouse Recordings) – Hercules and Love Affair vocalist Kim Ann Foxman has been toying with electronic music production and featured vocals for a while now which has lead to her setting up her own record label fresh out of Brooklyn. Groovy, Acid Squelch, Haunting vocals and trip breakdown sum up the release.
  • Subb-An feat. The Million Plan – Vapour Trails (Crosstown Rebels) – Very extended player should be the format of this release as it features 6 tracks including the title track, Oasis and Black fire plus some great remixes including a Mathew Herbert classic. Bassy, Dubby, ‘Herbert-ised’ (new word for Herbert’s ability to create a new track with his remixes), Acid Arab sum up the release.
  • Johannes Brecht – Enjoy the Void (BOSO) – Mario Basanov AKA Ten Walls has helped set up and launch the label with this immense Ten Walls tracks over the last 12/18 months and this new release is cut from the same cloth with the signature sound that the label is now renowned for. Progressive, Emotional, Atmospheric, Uplifting, Eclectic sum up the release.
  • Len Leise – Music for Forests (International Feel) – the most bizarre release of this promotional selection and it needs to be heard to be believed. The words used to introduce this track by Maouris cannot be topped so I would recommend having a read – http://maouris.co.uk/music-detail.php?c=ifeel035-music-for-forests. Chilled, Dreamy, Nature, Percussion, Animals, Meditation sum up the release.
  • Luca C and Brigante feat. Roisin Murphy – Invisions (Hot Creations) – The follow up track to Flash of Light from the same team gives us Invisions which is another great release featuring Roisin Murphy who is a TBC favourite through both her Moloko and solo artist releases. Deep House, Summery, Amazing Vocals, Luke Solomon Remix (which is epic), sum up this release.
  • NTEIBINT feat. Birsen – Riptide (Eskimo Recordings) – George Bakalakos or NTEIBINT has releases on Warp, Kitsune and Bang Gang which ticks a lot of boxes that TBC admire in regards to record labels and musical genres. We were intrigued and interested with this release which is a blend of pop and disco. Electronica, Amazing Vocals (from Birsen, a Belgian vocalist), Pop, Disco, Electro sum this release up.
  • Berkson & What – Make it True feat. JoJo De Freq (Play It Say It) – in 2014 Seth Troxler set up his own label which has featured Sharam, Clarian and Steve Lawler releasing tracks with a sound that you would be familiar of having listened to Mr.Troxler’s own DJ sets. Sunshine, Groovy, Acid Squelch, Luke Solomon Remix (he is on fire at the moment, Essential Mix on the cards for Friday 16th January, don’t miss it!) sum it up.
  • Davi – Gates of Babylon (Rebellion) – From a subsidiary of Crosstown Rebels vast music empire comes a release via Rebellion and it is on the back of a recent wave of Arabic inspired tracks that Acid Arab have brought to the masses over the last 12/18 months. House/Techno, Progressive, Hazy, Summer, Arabic sum this one up.
  • Laura Jones – Eskipade (Visionquest) – Laura Jones is a fan favourite since her rise in the DJ ranks over the last 3/4 years courtesy of great DJ sets and releases. TBC were fortunate to see Laura in her early days when she played with Ellen Allien at Sankeys in Manchester (October 2011 – Queens of Sankey’s) where she was excellent. This new release is more straight up dance floor music with a heavy groove consistent throughout, perfect for the bass rich club sound system. Tech-House, Heavy Groove, Acid Squelch, Kick Drum, Hand Clap sum up the release.
  • Steve Lawler – House Record (Hot Creations) – Steve Lawler is a house music legend and provides the latest release for Jamie Jones and Lee Foss on their Hot Creations label with a sound that you would expect from the label; catchy, groovy house music. Acid House, Old School, Energy, Hand Clap sum this one up.
  • SEFF – Jack’s Back (Hot Creations) – a great EP from a new artist to TBC but SEFF has worked with Steve Lawler and Dave Seaman already which gives him a great pedigree. House music with electro and great basslines which sound excellent played loud. We will keep an eye out for SEFF in the future. Electro House, Old School Vocal, Sub Bass, Evil Synths sum this one up.
  • Sandeman and John Monkman – French Girl in Berghain (Rebellion) – Another release from Rebellion/Crosstown Rebels with a bizarre house track and a porno sounding female vocal that was born out of an experience at Berghain in Berlin for the tracks producers. Freaky, Shonky, Wonky, Epic Breakdown, Bizarre, Berghain sums this up.
  • Moreon & Baffa – A Mental Process (Visionquest) – This producer team hail from Venezuela and now reside in Barcelona, which is one of TBC’s favourite places in the world, and their roots and environment suit their production style. They are traditional producers who understand music at a ground level and are renowned for their music ‘architecture’ and sonic landscapes. Progressive, Structure, Minimal, Deadbeat Remix (heavy, synth noises and storming bass) sum this one up.
  • Dave Angel – Revelation (Crosstown Rebels) – A new release from a UK techno legend who has been around in the music industry since i was born in 1983. Dave Angel is well know for his 1990 mash up track featuring Sweet Dreams from the Eurythmics titled the Nightmare Mix (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pegKuWUR84Y) which is an acid house/rave stormer. Since this time he has released over 50 singles and albums making him a stalwart for the UK techno scene. Progressive Techno, Old School Vocal/Sample, Synths, Keys, 90’s, Bass sum up this release

As you will have identified from the diverse selection we have reviewed and summarised above selecting our best three releases and our favourite was very difficult. The variety of musical genres, some great remixes which transformed the EP, brilliant producers and featured artists have both entertained us over the last few weeks and had TBC asking themselves which releases stood out above the rest. The shortlist in no particular order:

1. Davi – Gates of Babylon (Rebellion)

  • Over the last 18 months Acid Arab have brought us their collection of tracks, an amazing RA podcast and influenced a whole scene in House music where the arabic sound has become very popular. TBC have enjoyed this direction in House music and always keep an eye out for new records that sit in this sub-genre of which Davi has now added his production work via Rebellion/Crosstown Rebels. This EP is excellent, it oozes quality production skills and the progressive style used works perfectly with the arabic sounds. You can play both tracks back to back and they mix perfectly which is proof of the quality in the production. It is hard to pick a favourite out of Gates of Babylon and Eclipse so we can only recommend them both.

2. SEFF – Jack’s Back (Hot Creations)

  • SEFF’s credentials over the last few years would enable you to predict that a great release was on the cards, working with Steve Lawler and Dave Seaman (two of the all time dance music greats) on their respective labels and with Great Stuff Recordings which is a TBC favourite label, however having not heard of the DJ before we were both surprised and excited with this release. Jack’s Back features three tracks; Like That, Jack’s Back and Zoot, and they are all excellent in their own way. Jack’s Back, the title track, is probably the weaker of the three but it still provides a great party feel and would be more suited to earlier in the night. Like That and Zoot are right on the money and provide energy, basslines, synths and old school sounds which sit between House and Techno perfectly, with Zoot being our favourite due to its marching beat and evil sounding synth sounds. We look forward to more from SEFF.

3. NTEIBINT feat. Birsen – Riptide (Eskimo Recordings)

  • The most leftfield of our selections in the top three but we would expect nothing less from an Eskimo Recordings release and an artist that has featured on WARP, Kitsune and Bang Gang which is a diverse yet excellent array of record labels in their own right. NTEIBINT has produced a track which sits well within the urban electronic pop genre which has been very popular over the last few years nesting nicely between commercial pop music and the gritty urban club scene. The radio edit is probably our least favourite version of the track as it doesn’t provide you with enough of Birsen’s beautiful vocal and NTEIBINT’s electronic production skills. The extended version sits at around 7 minutes and is the perfect duration to enjoy both aspects of the song. You will definitely find yourself bopping away to the tune, humming to the vocal and wanting to play on repeat. The Dub version even provides an option to play out in the club during a disco or house set which is nice.

We would highly recommend all three releases but our favourite has to be SEFF as it is the most suited to TBC and we could imagine dancing around to Like That and Zoot on the loud sound system at one of our nights. The EP features three great tracks, doesn’t worry about remixes and just focuses on the dance floor and production. We hope to see SEFF playing out at some stage and hope the next releases maintain the same quality and style.

Notable mentions go to Johannes Brecht’s Enjoy the Void on BOSO and Subb-An’s Vapour Trails on Crosstown Rebels who were close behind the selections above but didn’t quite make it. There are also some notable tracks also that did not make it onto the shortlist but they were true gems on their respective EP. Luke Solomon’s remixes are standout for Luca C & Brigante feat. Roisin Murphy Invisions  and Berkson & What Make it True. These are the two most recommended remixes across the selection. The Mathew Herbert remix of Subb-Ann Vapour Trails is a close third.

We hope you have enjoyed reading, look forward to your feedback and we will bring you more promo reviews soon.

TBC

TBC Review – BBC Essential Mix of the Year 2014

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Pete Tong announced the shortlist for the Essential Mix of the year 2014 last weekend (6th December) and TBC thought it best that we had our own review of the shortlist and select our favourite.

The shortlist:

  1. Bicep
  2. Caribou
  3. Jon Hopkins
  4. Joy Orbison
  5. Ten Walls

Over the last week at TBC we have been re-listening to the Essential Mix of the year shortlist and boy have we had a good time. Boogying at lunch time at work, while driving in the car, walking to the shops and, of course, loudly at TBC HQ, basically whenever we got a spare second we have had the essential mixes on. It has been incredibly enjoyable to review some mixes which we hadn’t given too much time to when they were aired; Caribou and Joy Orbison, as well as reviewing the other mixes which we had thoroughly enjoyed on multiple occasions this year. It has to be said that 2014 was a great year for the essential mix and some great mixes didn’t quite make it into the shortlist. Amine Edge and Dance introduced us to G-House. Marcel Dettmann delivered a monstrous techno mix for the Easter holidays while we were away in NYC and Green Velvet blended his signature techno and electro sounds during the Summer which got us very excited at TBC. We were also throughly entertained by a multitude of music genres and diversity from the likes of Finnebassen, Bonobo, Anja Schneider, Gaiser, Matador, Jimmy Edgar, Kink, Steffi, Subb-an, Heidi and Huxley to name a few. We must all say thanks to Pete Tong and his team at the BBC for again curating an amazing year of Essential Mixes. Roll on 2015!

We have reviewed each mix individually, reduced the list to a top 3 and then selected our favourite, so here it goes.

-Bicep – Deep house’s representation in this years essential mix of the year shortlist. A great party vibe from the Northern Irish due Bicep with the odd harder edged electro or techno track thrown in for good measure, especially nearer the end. Highlights in the mix are; Agoria la Onzieme Marche and Ferrer & Sydenham Timbuktu (Jerome’s Afro Tonic Dub). There is also a superb sample courtesy of Arnold Schwarzenegger in reference to his body building days in Ireland which Bicep have found to introduce their mix and, we assume, hint at the basis for their DJ name. This mix is not quite a TBC favourite but is a great mix to have on at a party whether its pre/post clubbing.
-Caribou – A mix of two halves, one half by Caribou and one half by Daphni, who are the multiple personalities of the Canadian Daniel Snaith. The former is more eclectic, disco, alternative and the latter more dance floor and club focused. Unfortunately the mix doesn’t really take off at any stage and is mainly focused around the representation of the diverse musical knowledge of Caribou, which while providing a great opportunity to appreciate his musical talent does mean that there are less opportunities to get dancing and party hard. It is well mixed, the tune selection is excellent and it has a great structure but it doesn’t make it into the top 3 for TBC.
-Joy Orbison – This mix is raw, filled with amazing eclectic electronica with an urban feel that builds from slow, reggae style tracks at the start to banging techno towards the end. Turn the bass up, treasure the tracklist, find the artists and tracks who feature and track down a Joy Orbison live performance. This mix is so entertaining it had us listening to it back to back for 4 hours! That’s a rare occurrence at TBC, especially when considering we had missed this mix earlier in the 2014 Essential Mix calendar. The highlights of the mix; Lady Blacktronika Getting Heavy, Bruce Technostatic, Kowton Glock & Roll, Barnt’s double selection of Under his Own Name But Also as Sir and Chappell (one of TBC’s current big tunes), Fourtet Buchla and the tracks from Joy Orbison (solo and with Boddika).
-Jon Hopkins – the perfectionist live  show performance feel is what sets this mix apart. The progression and structure of the mix is excellent and is testament to Jon Hopkins skill as a live performer and composer. The mix is delivered via Logic, Ableton and various samples and tools which show off a more technical offering. A particular highlight is one of the best mixes and tune selections we have ever heard from I Breathe ak Horses called Faith (Field Remix) to Gary Beck’s Algoreal, this mix literally leaves you with goosebumps! The musical landscape created by Jon Hopkins is an aural pleasure! Also featuring are great tracks from Daniel Avery, Boddika and Joy Orbison, Clark and Mux Mool to name but a few.
-Ten Walls – This is the most club ready of the mixes and is brought to you by Mario Basanov in his live, progressive techno/electro guise Ten Walls, who produced one of the tracks of 2013; Gotham. This set is the tracklist of Summer 2014 for any one who ventured to dance music festivals at home or abroad, for TBC it was a perfect accompaniment to Melt Festival in Leipzig. The mix has the perfect balance; a great intro track from the Mass Effect Videograme Soundtrack (which is epic), then it builds through eclectic tracks such as Atom TM Ich Bin Meine Maschine to Helium Robots Jarza (Theo Parrish Translation 2). It then progresses with fan favourites such as &Me After Dark, Moderat Bad Kingdom (Dj Koze remix), his own Walking with Elephants. Ten Walls then shows off some of his favourites and less well known producers; a few tracks from Few Nolder (upcoming artist from Lithuania), an Eastern European sounding electro stormer from C.A.R. called Angelina, a beautiful moody track from Robinn called The Game is Now Over and ends with Plastikmans dark and haunting Consumer plus a final outro from the Mass Effect soundtrack.
The Top 3
  1. Ten Walls
  2. Jon Hopkins
  3. Joy Orbison

The top 3 is summarised by Club vs Perfection vs Raw, respectively. Ten Walls provides the mix most representative of TBC clubbing in 2014 and in particular Melt Festival which was one our highlights of the year, Jon Hopkins delivers a perfectionist live performance that you would expect from a live performer (similar to John Talabot currently, Paul Kalkbrenner a few years ago or, for the older ones, Junkie XL) and Joy Orbison hits you with a devastating raw mix of techno and dub that makes selecting one of the three as a favourite very difficult. The decision was difficult and the countless hours spent listening to the mixes, some a multiple of times for the full 120 minutes and others in segments to identify those key tracks, mixes and transitions that make a mix excel. However, finally after a lot of consideration, we made our call and gave Essential Mix of the year 2014 to Joy Orbison. It wouldn’t have been our selection when we first saw the list announced and choosing this mix over Ten Walls and Jon Hopkins was difficult when there were so many good things to say about these mixes but Joy Orbison literally blew us away. The style of the mix, the fact that he rarely performs live or records mixes, the severity of some of the tracks on the scale of heavy techno and the fact that we had rarely heard a mix from this DJ/producer before created a package that is hard not to love.

We look forward to hearing from the Essential Mix team and Pete Tong himself on who they will vote for the Essential Mix of the year 2014.

Looking forward to next year when we hope the level of the mixes remains of this calibre. The artists we would like to see next year are listed below, we hope that some feature.

Ellen Allien, Helena Hauf, Ben Klock, John Talabot, Modeselektor, Acid Pauli, Mister Saturday Night, Robert Hood, Pan Pot, Gary Beck, Shed, Oliver Koletzki, The Hacker, Oliver Schories, Objekt, Model 500, Tube & Berger, Spektre.
Thanks for reading and check out the mixes for yourself below. Tell us what you think.
TBC

Promo Album Review – Mister Saturday Night pres. Weekends and Beginnings

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Welcome back to another of our Promotional Album Reviews for TBC. This time we are announcing another of our amazing opportunities to review a great record label release; Mister Saturday Night. When we visited New York in April 2014 we got caught up in the hype that accompanies this amazing night as we planned our partying over the Easter Weekend and visited the local record shops in Brooklyn. Unfortunately there wasn’t a Mister Saturday Night party that weekend but we heard plenty about the label from local record shops owners and employees who were keen to promote the latest EP release. TBC feel an affinity with Mister Saturday Night (MSN) based on our experience of their nights, musical stance and dedication to a good party and their mission on their website:

“Mister Saturday Night strives to do a little more than a typical party. With a love of great music and a passion for bringing people together, we try to create an experience that’s truly fun and engaging for everyone involved – party people, DJs, bartenders and doormen alike.”

We were very excited when we were offered a chance to be added to their promotional mailing list and couldn’t wait to review their next big release in November which was to be a new compilation CD. We will also be reviewing the back catalogue including the amazing LP Brother and Sisters (released back in July 2014)

Eamon Harkin and Justin Carter, commonly know as the duo Mister Saturday Night, provide the DJ collaboration for their record label’s (which shares their duo name) latest release called Weekends & Beginnings. The mix CD was released on the 18th November and is available through on line retailers and iTunes. It was recorded live at an MSN party in August 2014 and from the outset you know this one is going to be special when the French vocal led track from Le Chanteur graces your speakers. This is followed by a great disco track from Terrence Jerome and then slips nicely into a groovy, piano infused, vocal house track from Alice Smith titled Love Endeavour.  This track eases you into the mix and helps you to imagine the mood in the club with the musical flow developing a great party vibe. It doesn’t take long for the MSN duo to introduce some heavy drum beats and show off their eclecticism with a heavy percussive, tribally track from Nebraska and a new track from Cobblestone Jazz (Mathew Jonson lead trio) which pulses with an acid sounding baseline. The mix continues to develop and features some great artists and tracks; Mr.G, Anthony Parasole and Caribou. The mix really steps it up a notch at around the half an hour mark with a superb remix by Motor City Drum Ensemble of Caribou’s Leave House which builds on the haunting vocal to deliver a atmospheric progressive track that sits well within the mix and shows off the remixers signature sound. This is then followed by a great samba style track featuring trumpets and piano keys from Adessa Versions that makes you shake your ass. The proceeding tracks maintain the uplifting vibe of the mix CD with gospel style, funky and samba style percussive house that lead up to TBC’s favourite track Take That from Jurgen Paape which is a true TBC classic. Take That does exactly what is says on the tin and thrusts a bouncy, electro synth track right in your face, we couldn’t help but turn the mix up at this point, throw some shapes and even enjoy a cheeky ‘rewind’ moment as we had to listen to the track again. Next, Ike Release brings you down with a moody, hazy progressive track called Phazzled which then leads on to quirky, dubby,  broken vocal track from Recloose and then to Bassclef’s dreamy soundscape. Finally ending the mix with an amazing track from Sam Orwell which features an awesome saxophone solo to provide you with a sublime yet eclectic finale.

Tracklisting:

01. Le Chanteur – La Passion des Collines**
02. Terrence Jerome – Believe**
03. Alice Smith – Love Endeavor (Maurice Fulton Remix)
04. Nebraska – Green Marimba
05. Cobblestone Jazz – Traffic Jam
06. Mr. G – Daily Prayer
07. Anthony Parasole/Elgato – Quickstrike/Zone
08. Caribou – Leave House (Motor City Drum Ensemble Remix)
09. Adesse Versions – Modal
10. Jasper Street Company – Solid Ground (Tommy Musto Remix)
11. House of Gypsies – Another Worry
12. Lord Nelson – Shango (Daniel Haaksman and DJ Beware Remix)
13. DJ Duke – Sun Beats
14. Jurgen Paape – Take That
15. Ike Release – Phazzled
16. Recloose – Can’t Take It (Herbert’s Some Dumb Dub)
17. Bassclef – Ghost Kicks In The Spiral
18. Sam Orwell – Secret Nothings**

Weekends & Beginnings is top notch eclectic house party set that leaves you envious of not experiencing it live, the added crowd noise just adds to the jealousy. This style is exactly what TBC HQ love in a good mix CD and it will remain on our playlist for a while. Disco, ‘eclecticity’, techno and house all feature and yet at no point, despite the diverse tracklist, do you ever feel like the mix is disjointed, it flows so well that it highlights the Mister Saturday Night party formula creates the perfect party mix. We need to get our asses back to Brooklyn NYC, fast!

We hope you have enjoyed the review and we cannot recommend this mix high enough.

Thanks for reading, and thank you to the Mister Saturday Night team.

If you would like a sneak peak at the NYC loft party vibe then check out the great feature on Resident Advisor below:

TBC

Promotional Album Review – Eskimo Recordings pres. The Green Collection

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Good evening TBC. Hot on the heels of our last promotional review post, thanks to our recent tie in with Eskimo Recordings via Maouris Promotions, we have another post featuring a new compilation called The Green Collection. If you have been fortunate to listen to the previous two releases titled the Pink and Blue collection you will know that Eskimo Recordings releases are as cool as their name suggests, they seem to effortlessly select the most upfront disco, deep house and house that is currently on offer. We would highly recommend that you check out the previous collections along with the record labels back catalogue which is extensive and equally as impressive.

The most difficult thing in the dance music industry is to be able to continuously put out single releases, albums and compilations while remaining at the forefront of your specific music genre. If you were to base your assessment of Eskimo on their last two releases you would believe that they were up there with the best in disco and deep house. They have managed to secure tracks by big artists such as Freeform Five feat. Roisin Murphy on their last Blue collection and have their own label favourites such as Satin Jackets who have a track on each of the three albums in the series. The Blue collection is one our favourite releases of 2014 at TBC and therefore we were apprehensive when we heard that a new collection was out so soon. Could it live up to its predecessor?

You first notice when listening to the new Green Collection compilation that a shift has taken place since its predecessor where the focus has moved to a more dreamy, percussive disco track structure on the first half of the album and a more upbeat, ‘spacey’ disco, synthesiser lead structure on the latter half. If you had your heart set on more of the same you may well be disappointed but you shouldn’t be because Eskimo have provided an alternative side to their label which should excite and captivate you. The earlier tracks from Knight One, Alexander Skancke and Horixon (the latter two were reviewed on TBC in September – follow this link https://technobreakfastclub.co.uk/2014/09/28/album-and-single-releases-promo-reviews/ ) are well produced, dreamy disco tracks with each one having its own quirky take on the Eskimo sound. Vinny Villbass (an Eskimo favourite who provided a great remix to the Found my Place track by Skancke), Mees Dierdrop and NTEIBINT pick things up a bit with their funky, spaced out disco sounds that have a more eclectic feel featuring wonky strings, ‘trancey’ lullabies and space funk respectively. From track 7 onwards is where this album moves onto a different level, lead by an amazing new track from Kraak & Smaak who are underground house legends from Netherlands. Their track Ghostnote has to be the standout track, oozing class and showing off an 80’s power track that wouldn’t go amiss in a stylish movie soundtrack like “Drive”. The synth lead piano track rises and falls throughout the track leaving you powerless to avoid grooving away. Duncan Grey, Blende, Trulz & Robin and Man Power continue the more upbeat focus of the album with tracks well suited to follow the monster Ghostnote. Blende’s track Sparkle would have to be the second stand out track, another great, classy, synth lead, space disco track (see sample below). The album ends with an almost Moderat-esque euphoric track by Satin Jackets featuring a superb vocal from Patrick Baker that will emotionally move you, a great way to end the album.

Overall this is a great edition to the Eskimo Recordings catalogue and creates a superb trilogy that all disco and house fans should own. Is the newest release better than the Blue Collection in TBC’s opinion I hear you asking? We wouldn’t say so, but the former collection was an exceptional release where each track shone, whereas the latest Green Collection provides a more diverse selection of what Eskimo have to offer that impresses in its own way.

We hoped you enjoyed and we have another great promotional label tie in to announce soon so keep you eyes peeled.

TBC

 

Album and Single Releases – Promo Reviews

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Evening TBC followers, as promised in our latest TBC Playlist blog (hopefully you have all had a chance to read the latest edition) we have a special surprise and great new feature to our review section. We have teamed up with Maouris, who are responsible for promotions for some of the best labels in house, disco and techno. Currently bringing you new and current single & album releases from the likes of Eskimo Recordings, Crosstown Rebels, Culprit, International Feel, K7, Global Underground, Cadenza and Turbo to new name but a few. We hope to give you an upfront guide to new and upcoming releases in addition to the normal playlist feature.

The format will be a summary of the upcoming and recent releases and we will select our top 3 releases in each review blog. There will also be special review blogs for our favourite albums or releases, so please check regularly for our newest articles.

  • Fernando – Infinite Ways (International Feel – Released October 2014)
    • An Argentinian producer who has released a low BPM EP with three great spaced out disco tracks. Infinite Ways is the title track, it is the fastest of the three tracks and is obviously the main release track. A great guitar baseline and ‘synthy noises’ create the foundation for this track which is accompanied by an electro sounding vocal from Dom Wrong. Road Music is spaced out vocal number and  The Reason is a slow, chunkier sounding track with a great vocal and progressive, uplifting keys section.
  • Jozif – Waikiki (Culprit – Released October 2014)
    • Under The Thumb feat. Jenny Jones is a progressive/deep house track with an uplifting, happy vibe and floaty vocals, a nice track which is chopped up and made more ‘dancey’ in the No Regular Play remix. Waikiki is a blissed out, haunty piano influenced progressive track. Good Man is a groovy number which features a nice trumpet & piano combo & some bizarre sound effects along with a deep vocal, the Matt Tolfrey EC1 mix of Good Man is a much more chilled affair. Good Man is definitely the best release on Waikiki.
  • Horixon feat. Robert Owens  – Brighter Day (Eskimo Recording – Released 22nd September 2014)
    • Brighter Day starts the EP and its a 90’s influenced house track with a great vocal from Robert Owens, the remixes (one is a vocal dub mix) from Locked Groove take the record to another level. Titled the ‘Marching Trumpets Remix’ the Locked Groove edit is more bassy, it feels club ready and has a tough, tech-edged groove (pardon the pun). Great Things features vocals from Jacques Teal and is a more dreamy track that reminds me of a Hot Chip production which is testament to the quality of this track from Horixon.
  • Joel Hood – Gone EP (International Feel – Released 15th September 2014)
    • Gone is a great summertime feeling track, uplifting & progressive with a number of great sound effects and samples going off throughout the track. The vocal is similar to the indie/electronica bands of recent years; MGMT, Phoenix, Friendly Fires. While You Were Waiting is a dreamy, chilled house track and could feature on a Cafe Del Mar album. Pissholes in the Snow is one of the more randomly named tracks that I have ever seen, the track itself is more in the vein of Gone, an indie dance style track out of the Friendly Fires mould again. Twisted electro sounding guitar riffs and uplifting beats make this a catchy little number. In Turmoil is a super slow, low BPM track that almost feels as though the music is being blown away, super dreamy and very chilled track with ghostly vocal samples. Gone is the outstanding track on this release.
  • Alexander Skancke feat. HEwrote – Found My Place (Eskimo Recordings – Released 8th September 2014)
    • A Single Release with 3 alternative remixes of Found My Place provides the dubby, percussion lead original with some great alternatives where the remixes seem to have more to get your teeth into. The House Mix and Tropical Mix by Vinny Villbass are both excellent, the former utilises the dubby, percussive foundation of the original to create a twisted version where the vocals really shine through, the latter slows things down and emphasises the percussion with what seems like a steel/kettle drum, just need to find a beach to enjoy this track on. The last mix by Oskar Offerman is the hardest of the three but by stripping down the track to minimal elements seems to lose the best parts of the original which Villbass managed to harness on his house mix.
  • ValentinStip – Sigh Remixes (Other People – Released 25th August 2014)
    • Stips’s Sign Remixes are the most experimental of the 6 records in this review. The first track Pendule mixed by LoVil doesn’t really hit the spot based on my music preferences, the track is very chilled & experimental and doesn’t do enough to keep me entertained. The second track Tableaux mixed by Ratowsky and Solpara is much more to my liking, the broken beat is accompanied by a haunting riff and stabby kick drums that keep the track flowing nicely up and down throughout the 8 and a half minutes, the breakdown in the middle provides great aural entertainment.

The three standout releases above are, in order:

  1. Fernando – Infinite Ways
  2. Horixon – Brighter Days
  3. Joel Hood – Gone EP

All three artists selected are new Artists to TBC and we look forward to hearing more from both them and the relevant record labels.

Many thanks to Maouris and the record labels for this opportunity. Please have a look at the website (see below link).

http://www.maouris.co.uk/insight

Ta Ta for now,

TBC

Hope Works 1st March 2014 Ben Sims and Kyle Hall

Hope works

TBC had promised ourselves a quiet March after the debauchery of our February and in particular our first party –  TBC Loved Up. Hope Works on the other hand had other ideas for us and when we saw the line up for their event on 1st March, any good intentions were thrown right out of the window! Not only had they secured UK techno god Ben Sims as the headline act but supporting him was Detroit’s fresh faced techno newcomer Kyle Hall. Well, tickets were booked without a second thought and excitement reached fever pitch in the days before the event. You see TBCers, Ben Sims playing in Sheffield was pretty damn special. Not only does he rarely play in the North of England but we at TBC had never seen him despite his tunes being regularly pelted out at TBC HQ and us having an all round humungous admiration for the guy! So yes, we were VERY excited!

We got to the club around 1.30am. By this time Detroit’s very own Kyle Hall was on the decks and his music was raw to say the least. It took a good 10 minutes and a shot of tequila for TBC to get to grips with the industrial, griminess that was being pumped through Hope Works. Once we did however, well ……. we really bloody liked it!  It wasn’t the easiest music to dance to as it was rather disjointed and brash however, its rawness suited the grittiness of Hope Works down to a tee. The set was varied and unusual. Mr Hall was also pulling off some very bizarre and ambitious mixing which shed a light on what a true DJing talent this guy is.

The layout of the club itself had also changed since the last time TBC came here. The dance floor had been widened and the place was generally more open than it had been which created a much easier space to get down and boogie in.

Ben Sims came on at 3am and his opening number made sure everyone on the dance floor stopped what they were doing and turned towards the DJ booth in awe. He played a gorgeously, rich and unexpected 1920’s swing track with footage of jazz musicians projected behind the DJ booth complimenting it perfectly.  It was a magnificent set opener and marked the bar for the rest of the set which was absolutely superb. Whereas Hall’s music had been difficult to dance to, Sims’ was the complete opposite. It had such an amazing flow and groove that made dancing to it a real pleasure. This was evident whenever TBC looked around the dance floor and was greeted by a sea of ecstatic faces and clubbers bopping away like nobody’s business. The night wasn’t a sell out which was a surprise considering the calibre of the line up. Come on Sheffield clubbing collective – what were you thinking if you missed this one? It did however mean there was ample space for TBC to throw our limbs around in wild abandon to the delicious techno that Sims was bestowing on us. His set varied from funky techno to hard as nails and at some points the intensity on the dance floor did make TBC think they might have a heart attack! Ben Sims was everything we had expected and so much more and the Hope Works team have a lot to be congratulated on and thanked for in bringing such a techno legend to the Steel City.

The only downside of the night was that despite the fact the music was awesome, the sound system wasn’t all that great. TBC still had slight ringing in their ears after a good nights sleep – hmmm not really what you want at work on the Monday! Aside from that though it was a monster of a night which appeared to be enjoyed thoroughly by all in attendance.

‘Wilde Liebe’ – new album review

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When asked to review the first compilation from the Wilde record label its safe to say that TBC were whooping for joy.  Wilde is home to an amazing array of artists as diverse as Tiefschwarz and Heidi. Furthermore, TBC went to the Wilde boat party at Sonar a few years back and despite some seriously choppy waves and questionable dance moves it was clear that Wilde know how to throw a super cool party.

“Wilde Liebe” is the first compilation release from the Wilde family to mark its 10th anniversary and it showcases recent releases from the Wilde artists. “Ok”, I hear you cry, “it’s a great label but is the compilation any good?” Well TBCers its not exactly bad but it isn’t all that good either. There are some great individual tunes such as: Tiefschwarz  – “Voices” which is a classically Tiefschwarz haunting, dark, electro number with some soul grazing bass. Atapy – “Finding You” has some really satisfying noises going on and continues the dark theme with a rather disturbing, distorted vocal. The compilation closer is a perfect little Burning Man style trippy, spacey number, “Albin” by Kenny Leaven.

All in all however, this album is inoffensive but distinctly mediocre. TBC have had a good few listens now and found that each time we did, we kind of forgot we were supposed to be reviewing the album and ended up having to remind ourselves to listen which really isn’t how it should be. It just didn’t grab us. You may feel differently so take a look at the track list below and if it seems like your thing give it a download. We would recommend the individual tracks listed above but as a whole, from us, the compilation doesn’t get a thumbs up.

01 Pilocka Krach – Superboy

02 DIA – Spot On

03 Djuma Soundsystem – Chick

04 Daniel Wilde – Prairie

05 Lewis Boardman – Yeah

06 Daniel Dexter – Eclipse

07 Sierra Sam – House in my house

08 The Jaydes – Hidden Pleasure

09 Ian Pooley – Flash 78

10 Tim Xavier – Memory Man

11 Tiefschwarz – Voices

12 Atapy – Finding You

13 Christian Prommer – Betchugona

14 Chris Wood & Meat – Make it Raw

15 Acid Washed & Stuff – Move On

16 Kenny Leaven – Albin

Cargo 9th November 2013 – Axel Boman Secret Warehouse Party

Well TBCers, if you have been living in some kind of hole (k or otherwise) for the past few years and you don’t know already, Cargo is Sheffield’s longest running techno and house night. It’s varied selection of DJs, everyone from Mark Broom to DJ Sneak, has helped to gather a diverse following for Cargo and TBC have been known to shimmy on down under their gargantuan disco ball on many an occasion! When the most recent party was announced 2 things instantly grabbed our attention. Número uno: headline DJ Axel Boman. Número duo: Secret Warehouse Location. What’s not to love TBCers? Pre- existing Boman admiration, intrigue and a love of industrial party settings meant that tickets were quickly snapped up by yours truly.

On the night itself we got to the club around 1.30am to be told that Axel was on at 2- perfect! The warehouse was located opposite Hopeworks and certainly packed a punch. It was on the cleaner, less grimy side than HW which TBC found preferable and it still maintained that rawness and industrial edge loved by so many Steel City Clubbers. It was the perfect size with bar area on entry and curtained off dance floor and DJ booth at the end. Cargo had really made an effort with the visuals. Gorgeous, shapes and symbols in soft, pinks, purples and greens were projected on the wall. This made a nice change to the cool but frankly sometimes rather disturbing visuals generally seen in warehouse venues and certainly suited the bill of music for the night.

On that note, enough about pretty lights and dancing space, “what about the music?” I hear you cry! Chris Moore, one of the Cargo Residents, and one half of Growmore was on when TBC arrived and we saw the last half an hour of his set. Gotta say, it wasn’t exactly doing it for us and there was a very noticeable change in quality when Axel B graced the decks. What can be said about his set? Where the hell do I start? It was phenomenal! If you have heard his production work then you would probably expect, as we did, some pretty dreamy, luxurious , mellow house from Mr B but no, his DJ set was in a different league. He stepped up his set perfectly for the club and delighted clubbers with a set of upbeat, driving, immensely pleasurable house, techno and disco. He did that thing that only a master DJ can do where he literally makes you feel like he is reading your mind and each song played is exactly what you needed to hear next. His crowd reading was second to none and as good as TBC favourite Ellen Allien, which is really saying something coming from us. Not only this folks but he was billed to play for 2 hours yet carried on playing for 4 when James Maplebeck, one of the Cargo boys, told him how long he’d played he uttered in disbelief, “what, your kidding? I told you to kick me off!?”. Hmmmm yeah, don’t think that was going to happen some how! 3 words party people: “IN THE ZONE!”. He would have carried on as well and the Cargo boys were trying madly to keep the bouncers from stopping the party with revellers treated to way more tunes than the original curfew had provided for only stopped when the killjoy bouncers turned all the lights on! Standard Sheffield party goers/promoters/DJs flagrant disregard of the rules in favour of a huge carry on!

This night was frickin awesome, the best Cargo that TBC has been to (and there have been a lot)! Well done guys this one was a real winner and not even the rude boys, with the gold teeth, shouting at the end “WHERE THE AFTER PARTY AT???” (erm anywhere you’re not!) could wipe the huge grins off our faces!

So if you like the sound of that, get yourselves down to Cargo v Ryad presents Subb-an and Adam Shelton on New Years Eve. Venue to be announced.

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Axel Boman – ‘Family Vacation’, new album review

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For those of you that are already feeling the Axel B sound after some of his previous releases such as ‘Purple Drank’ and ‘Holy Love’ hit the big time, you won’t be disappointed by his new, debut, album, ‘Family Vacation’. ‘Family Vacation’ is a sublime little album which takes the listener on a magic carpet ride throwing lots of experimental sounds and influences in along the way but maintaining that hallmark dreamy, blissed out Axel Boman style of house throughout.

If any of you TBCers were lucky enough to see Axel when he played at Cargo earlier in the month then you’ll know how varied this guy’s musical knowledge is and that certainly shines through on the album.

‘No Sweden’ has an Arabian Nights sound to it, Betty was strutting her stuff doing an impression of the Prince of Persia to this one!

‘Son of a plumber’ (not sure if the this is the sequel to ‘Son of a Preacher Man’?) has a really nice chunky percussion groove. Definitely one of the more danceable numbers on the album.

‘Barcelona’ is as delicious as the city itself with a slightly old school RnB tinge but seriously DO NOT let that put you off, it’s ace!

Word of warning though TBCers and this is especially going out to those who did see Axel at Cargo, his production style is very different to his DJing style. The album is far more relaxed and laid back than his upbeat, energetic club sets. In TBC’s view the perfect time to listen to ‘Family Vacation’ is on a train. Betty did and according to her it suited her environment exquisitely! All aboard! This isn’t one for blasting out before a big night out peeps be sure of that, it may have you reaching for your pjs rather than your spangly dancing shoes! Its brilliant for winding down at an after party though (when those pjs will no doubt be out and proud!)

All in all, ‘Family Vacation’ is an extremely well crafted debut which isn’t afraid to push those genre boundaries and sounds goddamn gorgeous to boot. Our recommendation? Get downloading mutha flippers!

https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/family-vacation-bonus…/id730902587