Roman Rauch – Heliocentric Mini LP (Klamauk)
Roman Rauch is a bit of a fucking don to be fair. I’ve always been a big fan of his dusty, downtrodden, funky as shit records and he’s got an impressive list of them to his name too. To date he’s graced some of my favourite labels such as Michael Baumann’s Philpot and Mule Musiq offshoot Endless Flight. The Austrian got involved with the Mainz based Klamauk on their last VA release and now he’s stepping up to the plate again and stretching himself a little further with this mini LP “Heliocentric” and it’s proper boss. Oh and Roman even gets a Carole King sample in there too which means he’s officially my favourite person right now. Mmmm hmmm. I love Carole King more than is healthy.
With Heliocentric Roman really pushes himself and lets his productions wander and cover some more expansive territory than a simple EP. His deep love for hip hop shines through with some nice, wonky, mid-tempo groovers but there are also some cracking dancefloor workouts too. And all of this is nicely glued together with some crazy, mind bending sample ditties in between. Highlights include the dancefloor deepness of “u don’t smoke what i smoke” (sic), the weird groove of “i’m gonna take all i can take” (sic) and the slow-mo funk of “it’s too late”. But this isn’t about highlights, just stick the record on, kick back and enjoy it from start to finish.
Out on wax on 16th March
Linkwood – Expressions LP (Firecracker)
Firecracker are one of the best labels out there and I’m genuinely surprised that I don’t own more of their records. It happens this way sometimes, and I think I’m going to have to start to redress the balance. I might just start by grabbing this latest LP from the mighty Linkwood – that’s if there’s any copies left by the time payday comes around (damn you Levon!) A start-to-finish listening experience with spacious atmospherics, weirdo rhythms and warm, creamy house music. Stone cold classic. JUST SAVE ME A FUCKING COPY WILL YOU??
Samuel – Static on the Dancefloor (Not So Much)
Mosca’s ace Not So Much imprint is back with their 3rd release and this time it’s from Bristolian artist Samuel and he moves into some much heavier territory than his previous productions. It’s a pretty mental 2 tracker with “Static on the Dancefloor” churning its way to a big, wonky mess and “Pump Room” being an atmospheric, slightly paranoid affair. The releases just keep getting better and better with NSM so keep your ears well and truly peeled.
Out 30th March on wax
John Osborn – Desire is Mono (TANSTAAFL)
TANSTAAFL returns after a two-year hiatus while they’ve been focusing on their sub-label TANSTAAFL Planets with this absolute belter by John Osborn. TANSTAAFL focuses on the work of label founders Osborn and also October and it’s felt a bit like the under-label of late and I hope that there’s going to be a lot more material by these guys coming up because their productions are second to none.
The two tracker kicks off with the title track which all hinges around a huge but spacious, meandering arpeggio. It’s cold but emotive, simple and very effective. Over on the flip is “FX06” and, for me, this is the killer. Again simplicity is the key but it’s a deceptive simplicity, with plenty of nuance and depth. There are lovely washing pads, an absolutely killer groove and some lovely bits of dissonance that work their way in every now and again. To quote a grumpy Welshman I know – “proper job”.
Out on wax on the 9th March
VA – City Fly Visions Vol 3 (City Fly)
Y’all know I’m a big fan of City Fly who have been truly reppin the East Midlands house scene for years now. They’re bringing up their 10th release with Volume 3 of their Visions compilation series and it’s up to the usual high standards as you’d expect. 4 tracks of the deepest, funkiest and groove inducing house tracks as you’re likely to find. We’ve got offerings from Marlow, Ugly Drums, Red Rack’em and Simbad and they’re all stone cold belters. Marlow brings pure heat with “I’m Riding High”, Ugly Drums takes things wonky with “Who’s Getting Down” Rack’em’s “Dark Boxing” is a stripped down banger and finally Simbad takes things percussive and soulful with “My Time” featuring Erik Rico. Cracking stuff.
Diego Krause – Unison Wax 03 (Unison Wax)
Diego Krause has just dropped Unison Wax numero 3 and it’s another cracking house workout. This label does chunky-yet-understated dancefloor pumpers better than most and so if you see any of their wax in the crates you may as well just snap it up. This time there’s a nice little twist with a bit of a slower, broken rhythm on A2. But it still has all of the same punch that all of these guys’ records seem to have. Good stuff. Crack on.
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