Archive for the ‘House’ Category

The Poem – G. Cheung aka Nookie aka Cloud Nine [1993]
November 14, 2014

I heard a deep house track that had an almost identical baseline synth earlier this week which got me thinking of this cracker from Nookie aka Gavin Cheung. A man that needs almost no introduction as he is responsible for some classic early to Mid-Nineties Hardcore and Drum n’ Bass cuts.

This track has a real crossover flavour with shades of House, hardcore and even acid techno from around that period of late 93. Definately not a track you would have heard a lot of around that time, I dont ever recall hearing this on any mix, with the Wave Station track from the double A side of this EP getting the most air time. A shame really because this track really does feel light years ahead of its time.

Slacker – Scared (Of Tomorrow) [1996]
October 30, 2014

An absolutely classic slice of Mid-Nineties progressive house from Shem McCauley. A killer driving bassline and an actual percussion track is what really set itself apart from the glub of 4 to the floor House tracks of the time. Couple that with the insanely catchy riff that just relentlessly repeats over the top of that brutal bassline and your in for 6 minutes of pure bliss. Definately one of those tracks that would just drop and have the entire place staring into space, locked into some of the purest house of the time. I cant tell you the number of times ive lost it on the dancefloor to this beast.

Sadly for reasons unknown, Shem McCauley decided to end his own life in Bangkok in January of 2012. Whatever his reasons, he left behind a catalogue of classics with this being his Magnum Opus. RIP man.

Gorgon City – Here For You Ft Laura Welsh [2014]
October 7, 2014

So I have been digging back through all the Soundcloud finds from the last 6 months. Kicking off with this belter from Gorgon City. A proper UK House banger if every there was one with that wonderful twangy bass contrasting perfectly with Welshes vocals AND the wonderful string sections of the bridge. A cracking summer track and one ive been caning the hell out of for months.

Boomshanka – Do You Have The Power (This Side Mix) [1993]
April 21, 2014

Comming from the seminal Cowboy records, I first clocked this track playing on Neil Macey’s Fantazia 92/93 NYE set. In itself, the mix is a classic as far as I am concerned, a real showcase of what the UK was doing with House music at a time when the whole dance music scene was fracturing into what we know now.

This track is easily one of those tracks that transcends genre’s though, a bonafide dancefloor destroyer. Its got everything that made that time so exciting like the exceptional electronic production and brilliant sample work. This track never feels overlong, just a relentless pounder thats got you locked into a deep ass sound on the dancefloor. Well, for about 5 minutes it does, it lulls you into thinking its another well produced Progressive banger. Them around the 5 minute mark, you suddenly notice the track beginning to build up, with glorious sweeping synth strings swirly around you and that stacatto vocal hook. All culminating in a fade that makes you think the track is over. But its not, nope, your about to get smashed in the face by a piano riff so uplifting that you and thousands of others will find yourselves swinging from the rafters, going harder, smiling wider than you have ever done before. What a fucking tune this is.

From Discogs
This record was one of my most wanted for years until I managed to get it ID. A very simply prog house tune with one of the most uplifting piano’s I have ever heard with the stuttering vocal sample “Do you have the power”. Was played out a lot by sasha early 1993.

Frankie Knuckles 1955 – 2014
April 1, 2014

I found out last night that Frankie Knuckles had died aged 59 and I cannot overstate how gutted I was. Frankie Knuckles wasnt just a DJ or Producer, he was one of a very small cadre of people responsible for creating the sound that has played in my head and heart for as long as I can remember. Sounds a bit spiritual I know but its hard to explain that music to me has always been about the kickdrum, the high hat and piano or soulful vocal hook. Sure my tastes have mellowed over the years but at the very beginning of my own personal musical journey, it was House music and specifically the Soulful House sound synonymous with ChiTown/NYC that I loved. Imagine me. locked onto as a young 8 year old lad, the John Peel radio show on a Sunday night, taping the imports that he played during the show. House music is probably the first thing I would say that defined me as my own person with my own taste. The first thing I found on my own.

Frankie Knuckles was responsible for the music at the Warehouse in Chicago, often credited with the origin of the name “House”, a shortened version of “The Warehouse” music that was in such demand in early 80’s Chicago record stores. The history of House Music is littered with DJ’s and producers held in high almost godlike reverence but almost all agree that Frankie was deserving of his title as the “Godfather of house”. A guy who took the records available to him after the death of commercial disco, rolled in a drum machine in the booth thanks to Derrick May and helped pioneer a sound that has dominated global music for over thirty years. Sure it was going to happen sooner or later but this soon, man I wanted to see Frankie just one more time…

So today the web has been rammed full of tributes to Knuckles, Twitter exploded last night with tributes, Facebook has been busting at the seams with friends all posting their favourite Frankie Knuckles cuts. He has a legacy that transcends his death for as long as there is a Kick Drum, a snare, a highhat played over a soulful vocal and an uplifting piano riff, therein lies some of Frankies DNA, a fingerprint that will outlive all of us left here reflecting upon his body of work.

Thank you for the music Frankie.

Kraze – The Party (Tunnel Mix) [1988]
January 9, 2014

There’s a riff, that I often find myself humming. On those rare occasions when I get a quiet moment, its a good chance that this riff will be there, floating around in the background. You might even say, its a riff that haunts me. That riff is the bassline to Kraze’s “The Party”. Its so damn perfect in its execution, its as if the sequence of notes were always meant to be played next to each other in this way. Like there really is no other way for them to be woven together.

Now that might sound a bit off the wall but stick with me. This came out in 1988, I was beginning to listen to House music, moving away from the hip hop and soul I had been listening to. There’s a good chance that I probably heard this, like so many others on a John Peel show on a Sunday night. But, like a handful of other tunes, this has a riff that has just stayed with me since that day. Its so simple, so iconic that its not hard to see why its such a beloved track by so many. Sure, the vocals can grate a little but you know you have a wry smile in the corner of your mouth when you head “Y’all want this party start right? Somebody Scream!”. Its a snapshot of everything that made these dance music releases so damn brilliant. Its got a huge slab of Detroit Techno in its veins with a bucketload of NY House sass thrown in for good measure. Its a song who’s sole purpose is to make you dance. At home, at work, on the bus, in a club, in a field, at your desk. Consider my Party well and truly started.

PSI – Inner Understanding [1993]
November 11, 2013

What a tune this is, taken from the excellent album Twice as Nice from Fantazia and its an album that really showcases where Fantazia were taking themselves back at the beginning of 1993. Leaning heavily on more progressive house sounds than the jungle that was emerging around the same time, this album has such a fantastic range of sounds that showcase just how the scene was fragmenting at the time.

This track is a real bridge tune with big piano’s evoking the arm waving tracks of the past 12 months along with a really quite ambient through to progressive synth and bass arrangement that sounds more like the tracks you would start hearing in the later months of ’93 at clubs all over the uk under the moniker of “Progressive House and Trance”.

For me, the intro is lifted straight out of an FSOL or Orb track and if I could criticize the track in any way, it would be because there’s not enough of this broken up ambient led intro.

From Fantazia.org
PSI was formed by Simon Kemmett from Cheltenham, who wrote and produced all the tracks. The vocals were performed by Caroline O’Shea. PSI played at many event during the rave years but were manly known for playing at the big Fantazia parties as well as for their signature tunes on the Fantazia albums The First Taste & Twice as Nice, including the classics Feel It – Fantazia, No Way & Forever.

Vindahl – Sometimes ( 12″ Groove Version ) [2011]
June 17, 2013

If you havent purchased Tokyo Dawn’s seminal Electro/Groove/NuDisco/Funk compilation “The Boogie”, get right on that now. Its a huge assortment of the freshest sounding electro work i’ve heard in the past 10 years with Vindahl’s Sometimes being a real standout belter of a tune. This doesnt just rock you slowly, its a moog driven behemoth of electrofunk evoking memories of ’84 Freestyle flavour with a solid and unstoppably crisp modern delivery. Its so slick, its almost unbearable but that bassline just carries your ass along for a cracking ride.

For the record, this compilation has about 12-14 different, practically unknown artists that contribute to it and absolutely every single track sounds better than anything any of the heavy hitters have put out in recent memory. Anyone wanting to hear some seriously progressive Electropop would be doing themselves a serious disservice by not diving into that back catalogue. Start your journey right here.

From TokyoDawn.com
Co-founder of the vanguard soul collective Boom Clap Bachelors, Vindahl has been involved with numerous offspring projects such as Ivory & Gold, Robi, Kris Mars and Non+.

“Vindahl – Serendipity”, the first album project to be released under his real name has been his secret heart project for more than four years now. Musical influences as diverse as Talking Heads, Trevor Horn and Prince shimmer through, complemented by lyrics often based on themes of duality.

Lisa Lisa & Cult Jam ‎– Let The Beat Hit ‘Em (Paradise Garage Club Mix) [1991]
April 6, 2013

We dont often get to revisit a track around these parts because usually i’d like to think ive uploaded the definitive version of that given track. However, since I had this mix rocking my socks all afternoon at work, it seemed prudent to give it a revisit.

Gone is the exceptional vocals from Lisa Lisa, replaced with a genre spanning house banger that will have your head bouncing for hours after you’ve stopped listening. You’ve got huge slabs of synth work in here, some light breakage and a truck load of classic house rhythm. Topped off with the occasional vocal stab and some cheeky nods to the original and your laughing. I just cant get past how great some of the remixes of this track are.

Sphinx feat Sabrina Johnston – What Hope Have I (Our Tribe Mix) [1995]
February 6, 2013

Get in! Is there anything better than hearing Sabrina Johnston opening her pipes and belting out a face tearing vocal for 6 minutes? The rest of the track is a pretty laid back house bouncer that as per usual gets trounced by Johnstons amazing voice. One of many a vocal house tune released in 1995 but often overlooked for the bigger crowd pleasers. Junior Vasquez gave this a more banging workout with his Junior Factory Dub/Mix but for me, as with most of Johnston’s tracks, its all filler. Let Sabrina do what she does best and give it a bass drum!