Dimitri From Paris – Dirty Larry (Dim’s A La Old School Flava) (Yellow Productions, 1996)

Here’s some classic bizniz from the many monikered Dimitri. Arriving on the scene as France awoke from its musical slumber in the mid nineties and casting the net wide in the search for influences, the cosmopolitan Dimitri championed a jet setting sound. Although a House DJ at heart, Dimitri took his early inspiration from the sounds of 50s Jazz, Exotica and Film Scores, creating in ‘Sacrebleu!’ (Mixmag’s Album of the Year in 96) a set of sumptuous downtempo muzak, lush and layered yet at the same time playful and full of character. However, if one were to peer through the Gauloises fug, inside that suave exterior was a house head sipping the same disco punch that the Idjuts and Harvey were serving up. This 12″ on Yellow Productions (a consistent label for cultured house co run by the consistently questionable Bob Sinclair) is an absolute gift for anyone with even a passing interest in having a good time.

The track first appeared on the Sacrebleu! LP in somewhat sophisticated fashion. Intended as a ‘tribute to the late Larry Levan and the great Lalo Shiffrin(sic)’, Dimitri serves up a house track incorporating the otherworldly melodies of Lalo Schifrin complete with not only harpsichord, jazz drums and bass, cinematic horns but also a bumping house kick and some far out dancefloor psychedelia a la Levan. If the more restrained LP version fell into the Lalo Schifrin camp, geared for lounge bars and home listening, perfect for an evening inside a Stella Artois advert, then the ‘Old School Flava’ mix was Larry’s revenge. Uptempo, proto house drums, dub disco bassline, lazers and the same far out synths as the LP version. If you’re a fan of the excellent Night Dubbin’ compilation on BBE then this one’s for you.

If you like what you hear then I strongly recommend finding a copy of this vinyl as the Crue-L Grand Orchestra and Idjut Boys mixes are also superb.

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art department feat. soul clap & osunlade – we call love (crosstown rebels, 2011)

Things might have been slow on the big release front lately, but the past fortnight has seen a deluge of quality records fall into our laps. This is one such blinder.

Art Department came to prominence with last years moody druggy groove ‘Without You’. A dark and sprawling late night odyssey underpinned by a repetitive bassline and rhythm that took global soundsystems by storm and polled at top spot on RA’s tracks of the year. Well, they’ve done it again. ‘We Call Love’ is the standout track from their recent long player ‘The Drawing Board’ and is similarly dark, custom made for sweatbox clubs. It takes you on a trip deep into the middle of the floor, updating a chicago warehouse sound with a hellish kick and some dark vocals. However the track’s real appeal is in the magnificent bass sound with square waves rounding out and filling the frequencies.

On remix duties are man of the moment Caribou, in his Daphni guise and the legendary DJ Harvey. Daphni serves up a oddball psychedelic revision of the track incorporating syncopation, free jazz and a oizo esque bassline. Oh, and some flat saxophone. It’s not for the fainthearted, and whilst it’s not for me to question innovation, I’m not sure we’re ready for this. Maybe our kids will love it.

Harvey on the other hand keeps things fairly close to the original, but supercharges the track. The vocals are dubbed out and the bass line is turned way up for maximum body movement. He extends the psychedelic synth breaks and adds otherworldly vocal effects and guitars, stretching the track out and pulling all the power out of the original parts. This is huge remix, completely stealing the show.

The record is available in all good retailers as we speak, and you can check out a youtube video of the brilliant Harvey mix below.

torsk vs todd

Massive record alert!!! As featured on Gilles Peterson’s radio 1 show on tuesday, a mysterious track called Torsk vs Todd. After some enquiries on DJ History, Todd has been kind enough to reveal that it is his remix of Bjørn Torske’s ‘Langt Fra Afrika’ which will be released on Smalltown Supersound with a DJ Harvey remix on the flip. Both men have been stars of recent posts here, so anticipation for the release is high. Todd’s remix extends the afro drum track way beyond its original 2 minutes, adding some weird synth noises which sound a bit like the ring collecting noise from Sonic, some great live trumpet and some chanted vocals. This track will not suit everyone, and could definitely split a dancefloor, but does have the potential to create a great moment if treated with care. Apparently Harvey’s side is not yet complete but I’d be intrigued if he turns out something as surprising and refreshing as this leftfield bomb. Here’s the track at low quality, taped off the radio like it was the mid nineties again.

dj harvey presents locussolus lp (international feel, 2011)

International Feel have this week announced the tracklisting and details for the forthcoming Locussolus LP, and caused great excitement in the bearded world. Whilst some will be disappointed that the CD version is essentially in the form of a collection of the three previous singles, albeit with the inclusion of a new track ‘Bloodbath’, this is made up for with the heady promise the new remixes show. Andrew Weatherall will be turning his dubby little techno mitts to ‘Gunship’, Norwegian cosmic ambassadors Lindstrom and Prins Thomas are delivering a new version of the brilliant and banging ‘I Want It’ and bleepy Komische king Emperor Machine is stretching Balearic groover ‘Little Boots’ into a 20 minute odyssey. In addition to this already impressive roster of remixers, Harvey will provide his own Dub of “Throwdown’ for our listening pleasure. I have no clue how these remixes or the new track sound, but have high hopes for a strong release. Those not wishing to be jipped by the CD release can buy a vinyl double pack of the four remixes for heavy club use, but at the cost of the loss of ‘Bloodbath’. Whatever the quality of the new tracks, any record containing ‘Next to You‘ is worth a listen…

Tracklisting:

CD:

1. Gunship
2. Little Boots
3. Gunship (Andrew Weatherall Remix)
4. I Want It
5. Throwdown
6. Bloodbath
7. Tan Sedan
8. Next To You
9. I Want It (Lindstrøm & Prins Thomas Remix)
10. Throwdown (Harvey’s Dub)
11. Little Boots (An Emperor Machine Special Edit Version)

Vinyl Double-pack:

1. Throwdown (Harvey’s Long Dub)
2. Little Boots (An Emperor Machine Special Edit Version)
3. I Want It (Lindstrøm & Prins Thomas Remix)
4. Gunship (Andrew Weatherall Dub)

dr dunks+bastardos ‘keep it cheap’ / locussolus ‘i want it’

Today saw the arrival of two storming releases sure to put an end to any winter blues from two of the biggest names in the game.

First up is the new release from Eric Duncan’s Keep It Cheap imprint. For vinyl number 3, Eric lets a buddy in on the action as Felix Dickinson (the man behind the recent Originals comp, which we reviewed a couple of weeks ago) presents the b side “Beef” edited under his Bastardos moniker (for the more curious, the original is apparently Zeus – Cowboy on the Beach). Wait a minute isn’t this the wrong speed? Exactly, Foolish Felix has lived up to his name here and given us a slow motion psychedelic chugger. As this speed the groove is awash with reverb, the guitars sound other worldly, the vocals sound like something out of Twin Peak’s red room (The owls are not what they seem) and the synths swirl around like a 70’s horror flick nightmare. It’s smoggy and it’s dirty, a good tip to take a room leftfield, or if you want to space out at home.

On the flipside, play that funky music whiteboy, Dr Dunks gives us an edited up slinky punk funkin rendition of Modern Romance’s ‘Best years of our life’. It grooves, it moves, the percussion sounds like saucepans, the bass sounds like magnificent seven by the Clash. It’s a disco not disco belter. Essential party music.

My personal favourite of these two releases however comes from DJ Harvey’s Locussolus project. The third release from the Loco crew on the respected International Feel label comprises two powerful weapons for dancefloor detonation. On the A side (I Want It) we get straight into the groove with a bouncy bassline riding a steady beat before all many of synth melodies start to float over the top. We get treated to some vocals from Harvey himself, with a pervy call and response “You want it? I want it? etc” and then the track enters a full on head down throb, maintaining a focussed tension. This builds to a lull in the middle, an eye in the storm, before things build back up into a fizzing driving finale.

On side B (Next To You) the pace drops but the quality keeps up. The track lulls the listener into a false sense of security with some gentle keys, before dropping into some reverb heavy drums and an impeccable bassline, which soon provides the basis for a fantastic loose boogie number. This track has everything, roving world percussion, piano breaks, a liquid bassline, a steam whistle synth reminiscent of summer madness by Kool and the Gang, whispered vocals, and some Levanesque synth noodling. Sublime. Modern day JazzFunk Odyssey.

You can purchase both of these releases here, and as a treat, here is a link to a ludicrous interview with Harvey, in full on El Duderino mode…

© Patrick Ryder @ gluefactorymanchester