reviews by Jon Freer

Courtesy of Jon Freer ( here are 22 reviews of released and soon to be released 12″es (sorry no cover shots or tracklistings this time):

Moses McClean feat. Nedra – Dream (Still Music)

Still Music take a slight diversion from their usual sound with this gorgeous vocal House effort from Moses McClean aka Mitch Moses and Vince McClean. The original is a day brightening vocal number, with darting guitar work, life loving keys and high-flying synths. Normal business is resumed with Isoul 8’s moogified mood deepener and Patchwork’s understanding chord touched retouch. DJ 3000 presents a startling technoid remix, where spiralling chords, focused beats and satisfying stabs pull the punches.

Voice – Know Rhythm / Guerilla Hustlin’ (Public Transit)

Scorching lyricsmith Voice makes her thoughts known on this spiky rhythm driven EP, which features production work from Alister Johnson and Moonstarr. “Know Rhythm” is Johnson’s tune, where beautiful keys, clappin’ percussion and brass blasts team up behind Voice’s Rucker esque suitor slaying delivery. On Moonstarr’s “Guerilla Hustlin’”, Voice comes through with a diatribe against those that make her feel claustrophobic, backed by a strengthening flute and clap slap beats. Moon’s instrumental is home to heavily fractured beats and an ear catching flute.

Max Cole – Star Charts Sampler (Wah Wah 45s)

Wah Wah continue to their run of excellent form with this rather ear catching EP from broken jazz magician Max Cole. “Wall Flowerin’” is an apologetic number, with slippery synths and keys that are careful where they step. Flashing keys, a squidgy bass and walking pace beats line up behind the yearning vocals on “Who Got The Keys?”. Synthy goodness coats those fascinated vocals on “Ay Calor”, whilst a flute from the heavens lets rip on “Silver Linings”.

V/A – Blueprints # 01 (Dealers Of Nordic Music)

DNM release distinctly Scandinavian future jazz, broken soul and organic techy tunes, which demand repeat listens. The highlight of this sampler EP is Hird’s “Running Low”, where stooped in concentration strings and closely held keys lose themselves in melancholia. Quant gives us a shocking string display and acid key washes on a track called “The Shadow”, whilst Solar Sound’s “Things We Do (Nils Krogh Edit) is all dinner jazz love and butt swinging beats. A bright synth display and gorgeous bass work dominates Tennis Hero’s “Alone”.

Rasiyah – U Better Run (Antipodean)

Neo Soul newcomer Rasiyah shows promise on this EP, which has been produced by future soul and broken jazz don Mark de Clive-Lowe. Rasiyah’s positive vocals are backed by slippery keys and strolling beats on “U Better Run”. Rasiyah tries to be strong on “Untitled (My Love)”, but gooey keys and serous strings block her path.

SUMO – The Danceband / Unlove Me (Heya Hifi)

Stockholm’s hefty SUMO twosome team up with Swedish MC Aaron Phiri for some straight-talking, posterior shaking House action. Determined beats, high reaching strings and dance praisin’ vox meet on “The Danceband”. “Unlove Me” is a thoroughly frustrated vocal number, with crazed keys and familiar cowbells.

Candidate – Anticipation (Arcobaleno)

Serge Santiago and Chris Bones hook on this release, which is more about the immediate thrill of losing yourself in music than foreseeing the future. A hypnotic bassline, angular beats and pondering synths combine on the magical “Anticipation”. Forceful beats and a pounding bassline hit home on the ‘Beatapella’.

Mister Leisure – The Bitching Hour (Genericide)

Matt Corwine goes for a slightly left of centre House attack with the premier release on his Genericide imprint. “The Bitching Hour” is a charming number, with business meaning drums, nervous synths and cheeky key work. Prodding beats, funny keys and spacey vocoders create “My Perfect Little World”

Jol – Life In The Sun (Dealers Of Nordic Music)

Jol thanks nature on this ear glowing EP for DNM. The title track is a lazy guitar touched and key kissed number, whilst Embee’s remix calls on electric guitars to enliven the mood. “Psycholude” is a weird keyed intermission, as “Spaceman” looks to the outer reaches of the galaxy for string driven inspiration.

Hansel The Unicorn - £5 an hour EP (HID Productions)

Jazz fiend HTU is probably not a unicorn, but he creates some fun little ditties under his fairytale guise. “That’s Killing” is all falling down stairs keys and thrown at wall percussion, whilst “£5 An Hour” wiggles courtesy of madcap percussion and a jiggling sax. “Milla and Margarita” is more sax horseplay, as a fun poking croon attempts to woo the “Rat Faced Girl” and the delusionally keyed “The Situation Is This” completes the tale.

V/A – House Invaderz EP 2/5 (HY:BR)

This EP of jacked up acidiness might be retro in focus, but the tunes have been programmed in a way to make them relevant today. The pick of the bunch is A Jackin’phreak’s “Pong Jacks”, where jolting digital keys and foghorn synths are put through their paces by rough kit percussion and manipulated scratches. Another quality track is Fafa Monteco’s “Bleepnotize”, with reliable percussion and a supple bass falling victim to all the usual acid trappings.

V/A – House Invaderz EP 1/5 (HY:BR)

The House Invadorz treat another quartet of production outfits to an acidious House bath. Arcade game keys, an evil bassline and filthy synths meet on Mazi’s great “Protons For Toddlers”, as waterful synths and no good keys colour Sam Karlsson and Gaffy’s “Invader’z Crazy Funk”. Jacked keys and scowling synths make their thoughts known on Alexkid and Chloé’s “Afterblaster”, with computerised synths and filed beats getting their way on Catwash’s “Nine Tendons”.

Cosmic Groove Transmission – It’s Not Blue EP (Phono Graffiti)

CGT get down for more jumpin’ funked out House business on the Leeds based crew’s own Phono Graffiti imprint. The choice mix comes from David Duriez, with breezy synths and a squelchy bass taking centre stage on his revision.

Alex Smoke – Never Want To See You Again (Soma)

The talented Smoke drops “Never Want To See You Again” and the original is accompanied by some tasty remixes. Smoke’s own ‘Floor Mix’ sprinkles thin vocal slices over mind losing keys and a moody bass. Ada’s remix sees synths pour out their feelings, whilst drummed percussion rouses heartbroken vocals. Slam’s revision is a heady mix of bleeping keys, jagged synths and powering beats.

Joseph Arthur – Can’t Exist (Remarkables RMX) (14th Floor)

Chris Tubbs of Atlantic Conveyor fame and the Next Men’s Brad Ellis have given NY singer-songwriter Joseph Arthur a simple House up. Feel good synths and sturdy kit percussion provide a great foundation for Arthur’s getting on with life vocals.

The Black Dog – Riphead EP (Soma)

The Black Dog is a revered name in electronic circles. Now comprising original member Ken Downie alongside Martin and Richard Dust, the trio have opened a new chapter in the musical canine’s history. “Ripheadv” is a distressing number, with melancholic keys, probing beats and a tearing bass. “Gawble Vianag” is an eerie number, where bass fuzz obscures kickin’ electroid percussion and creepy strings. Water drips into the “Mental Ward Sleep Machine”, which is powered by a petrifying bass and oddly shaped synths.

GarcyNoise and Davomat – Vending Machine (Justified Cause)

Spanish Housers GarcyNoise and Davomat team up for some dark teched up House business on Barcelona’s Justified Cause imprint. “Vending Machine” places nagging synths, well-shaken keys and a powerful bass in front of the listener. Brett Johnson and Tres Manos’ remix gives the track an energy injection, courtesy of some vigorous beats, stumbling vocals and wobbly synths.

V/A – House Invaderz EP 3/5 (HY:BR)

Not content with previous attacks, the House Invadorz return for another instalment. D.R.D’s “Motoracer (Jon Georgsson Remix)” is a skippily beaten digitised synth driven number, whilst Da Fresh’s “Hi Score” is all blinding keys and keen percussion. “Mind Your Head” from DJ Linus sees a bass attack tambourined percussion and stuttering synths, with Mr Barcode’s “Electronik Invadorz” pitting trilling keys against gargling acid.

John Stammers – The Fridge (Gardensticks)

Tender folkified compositions are the order of the day on this EP from John Stammers. “The Fridge” is a tale of heartache, backed by affectionate guitars and rather pretty strings. “Lonely Bird” gazes at nature, as “My Reply” sends sweet guitars over rough percussion.

Simian Mobile Disco – Hustler (Kitsuné)

Simian Mobile Disco turn up on the angular Kitsuné imprint with a pulsating floor batterer. Head straight for “Clik”, where vulgar synths jostle mind elevating keys for attention.

E-The-Hot pres. Franchising – The People (Distinctive)

Chic electronic button pusher Cagedbaby does the business here, giving E-The-Hot a mind twisting overhaul. Sprawling synths and messy keys spew their guts over steady beats and an unflinching bass on ‘baby’s retouch.

Timmy Vegas & Barbara Tucker – Dutty Funk (We Can Do) (MN2S)

The only mix worth the time of day here is Johnny Fiasco’s bumped up acied revisitation. On this overhaul, Barbara’s chewed up and spat out vocals are laid between sharp beats, a biting bass and dirty keys.


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