by Brent Crampton ~ Whether it be funky and deep, bompty and quirky, or just click-click beepy – this is your monthly house music source for what’s hot and churning on the dance floors at the moment. And with the Winter Music Conference just behind us, so many great choons are now on the market.
Matthew Bandy - Man of Soul EP - Blue Iguana
Starting off Blue Iguana’s first release (scheduled to come out within a month), things are on the right tack – nice and deep. With future releases and remixes by Jay-J, Halo and Demarkus Lewis, Blue Iguana is promising label for the deeper side of house.
On this release, Matthew Bandy from Limestone Recordings is really coming out swinging with these great tracks. The main cut, “Man of Soul,” is a breezy track with a funk-fueled base line. The top feature in the song is the trumpet timing throughout the track. With light keys and a subtle flute in the background, this 10 minute groove gives you plenty of time to layer up your mixing or just sit back and let the smooth rhythm lay out.
Jay-J breaks out his classic formula for remixing “Man of Soul.” With crisp, clear drums, funky guitar riff and symphonic melodies, Jay-J takes this track to a whole new level. Concluding with a dub version which I have yet to hear, this release is an instrumental number that is lacing a sealed deal for a solid house record.
Stacy Kidd - The Remixes EP - Muzique Boutique
As the title suggests, Kidd is bringing back and re-doing past house tracks. Scheduled to come out in late April, this three-tracker won’t disappoint Kidd fans. “In My Arms” takes on Kidd’s signature heavy chunk-o-funk rhythm with a fun and sped-up vocal. With complementing guitar riff and keys snaps, this tracky and filtered number is all over that Chicago house head scene.
Swinging a remix of “Let Love Enter” (the original version made it to Derrick Carter’s “Live at OM” mix and thus became an instant classic). The only noticeable change was switching the background horn to a filtered guitar synth. But towards the end of the track, Stacy Kidd lays out a trumpet explosion for a few bars.
The “I Wanted You” remix is a jacked-up jazz jammer with a swinging base line and vocal that rides on the melody. With a tip of soul, Stacy Kidd brings it like only he can.
Various - Night Train EP - Peaches International Records
Justin Long is undoubtedly an ambitious and aspiring Chicago talent. Having made a name for himself through his countless gigs in Chicago and jackin’ tracks, Long finally took the step and started his own record label. And this first release is all about acid! All artists on the release were selected by Long so you know what that means – dance floor madness.
“Acid Dolphins (Re-Edit)” by Wooly brings an anti-climatic acid groove. Caressing the dance floor with a hypnotic base line, this track has all the quirky blips and bleeps we have come to expect from Long’s taste in music.
Mike Dixon sends his blessings in “Beatz to Chicago” with a bouncy acid line with a hummering base. Bringing the beat from Chicago, Dixon splurges us with a mind-twisting “I bring the beat from Chicago” accapella on the flip side.
The peak track on the release is DJ Total M’s “Blow Da Box” which sets out to do exactly what it says in the title. Drums rolls and panning acid goodness, I swear this track has some sort of subliminal message beckoning jackers from their seats.
The highlight and most-played track for me on the release is “Warm and Wet” by the No Assembly Firm (Long and Dan X) and Wooly. Having a stomping drum rhythm and a ass-smacking clap – this track’s got groove!
Jake Childs - Life Of A Hustler - Drop
Boy, I remember the days when Jake Childs would get on www.undergroundhouse.net to get feedback on his tracks. Back then he was a no-name producer who to my surprise made impressive funky tracks. Now with his own label, Uniform, and a number of releases under his belt – it’s now no surprise he’s getting signed. Bringing versatility and repeated quality, Childs is an up and coming producer to keep your eye on.
“Goin’ Down” on the A-side is a dirty hip-house cut. The prime track on the release comes on the B-side with “What Can I Do.” Bringing the chunk and funk, what can I do from wanting to play this track out every set? Watching the dance floor work it out, I’m not sure if it’s the bouncing base line, catchy vocal or quirky and stripped down piano samples, but people respond to this track.
Reel People - Can’t Stop feat. Angela Johnson - Papa
We’ve all heard the track, “Can’t stop, the way I feel – every time I look into your eyes.” Kenny Dope brings in the remixes of the classic with his garage style synths and piano and overlaps it with a dirty base line. This four-tracker includes a full vocal, a stripped down beat version and instrumental. Let’s not forget the dub cut which has an original sound with climatic features that’s perfect for keeping the crowd guessing.
Lawnchair Generals - You Got To - Aroma
Need I say more than Lawnchair Generals? Well I shouldn’t have to, but this track is so good I will. “You Got To” has that building LCG feel with their classic smooth drums and base line. A sexy female voice proclaims, “You got to get up and get looser.”
“Stop Frontin’” brings a disco and funk feel. When you got that dead-beat crowd that just needs a mass-appealing fun and funky jam – reach for this!
Mr. V - Jus Dance - Vega Records
Talk about deep! Stripped down with a meringue dub feel – a spoken word by Mr. V carries you on a musical proclamation to “Jus dance baby.” I must add as a disclaimer, this track is for the true deep house heads. “This is the way we are, we feel our music . . . “ as Mr. V says in the track. The flip-side has a spacey and dubbed out number titled “Cosmic Ritual Dub.”
Special Forces - Family Business Remixes - Blockhead
What good would a house review be without a Joey Young record? Special Forces is a production duo with participants Youngman and Mike Frugaletti. This release is a peak time dropper with busy stabs, heavy percussion and as we have come to expect from Youngman, thick base lines. Remixes are provided by Natural Rhythm and Jason Hodges. That means this record is hot, hot, hot!