Highlights: June

N.O.I.A. / Rubicon / Rude 66 - Morning Bells [Crimes Of The Future]

In one track the trio of N.O.I.A., Rubicon and Rude 66 have brought electro back to the forefront of summer sunsets. 'Morning Bells' is music made for listening to while bussing through the city to your mates house, to the club from drinks or striding out the office to meet up with revellers. The London label is known for getting pulses rising and 'Morning Bells' does not disappoint.

An acid high line which sounds all-to-like Donna Summer’s 'I Feel Love' squeezed through a synth is the unrelenting sound through a track which builds from flat high-hats and stilted snares, through to a wave of electrostatic which fills the body of the record with Chemical Brothers power. It gets the shoulders rolling.

Euphoric at times, and calm and patient in the breakdowns, N.O.IA., Rubicon and Rude 66 have brought out a record on Crimes of the Future - the head of which, Timothy J Fairplay, provided a B-side remix which takes the track to a more ethereal place, featuring what must be a digital church organ - following their first track of 2018, 'Forever In Boccaccio', in style.

Buy: Vinyl / Digital

Various Artists - The Sound Of Love International 001 [Love International Recordings x Test Pressing]

Sound Of Love International is a series, masterminded with London’s Balearic culture website, Test Pressing, curated by some of the festivals favourite artists and DJ’s. A place for them to choose 12 records close to their heart, and with ties to the festival, that they love and want to share with the world.

001 has been compiled by Gatto Fritto a.k.a Ben Williams. A lifetime working in the better record shops of London and Berlin and DJ-ing in Europe’s finest underground clubs. This release is a collection of tracks that Ben played across his last two sets at Love International’s open-air club Barbarellas. There’s a dubby wildness in the stereo field that sounded good on the soundsystem. The clever part is how well suited these sounds are to the balmy outdoor vibe and where and when this music comes from. You can’t copyright these emotions, it would seem, and no-one told them in Cologne, Sheffield, Jamaica that the music they were producing would soundtrack a blinky-eyed sunrise in Croatia.

Having previously made freaky Disco mutations for Dissident Records, then an album of Kosmiche inspired sounds for International Feel, it’s proving to be something of an advantage not being easily hamstrung by genre. Musically adventurous, disparate yet harmonious and dance floor friendly. Mad Professor’s son, Joe Ariwa’s, demented Gabber tempo stepper played on 33- which is about as House as Reggae is ever going to be. A crash course in Skwee’s yearlong diversion into Afrobeat turned out the cream of the crop in Anaalivaihe’s ‘10.11.2012’ or Mi Ami’s outlier release on Pure Silk that sounds like, in Ben’s words, “Francois K being forced to make a record with a Juno 60”. Or crazy vari-speed tape dubbing from Sonny Okosun in the dub version of ‘Highlife’.

Buy: Vinyl / Digital

Lava La Rue- Letra [NINE8 Collective]

The 20 year old Lava La Rue founded the West-London based D.I.Y collective NiNE8, a group of friends and collaborators who create music, art, and clothes. Her debut EP, 'Letra', came out this week, and it has all the makings of your summer soundtrack.

Lava’s hazey, melodic style of hip hop combines smooth R&B with loose rap that is evidence of her talent as a spoken word poet. Her tracks combine thoughtful lyrics, delivered in a glassy, velvety, voice, with distorted, jazzy beats, and sound distinctly more mature than her years whilst remaining youthfully whimsical.

Lava’s music is audibly contemporary, and sits easily within the current culture of excellent female hiphop cultivated by the likes of Abra, S4U and IAMDDB. Within this, there are definite influences from hiphop’s 90’s heyday, and comparisons to Erykah Badu and Slum Village are sure to follow this girl around.

However, her style is refreshingly genre-fluid and impressively creative. For me, the title track is probably the highlight, but the variation between the four tracks on the EP makes it hard to pick an obvious favourite. Give 'Letra' a listen, and see for yourself, and keep an eye on Lava La Rue- she’s sure to have lots more goodies to come.

Stream: Spotify / Apple Music

Teluric - Orange Sunset [Yoyaku]

Romania’s Teluric delivers three deep cuts on French label, Yoyaku. Title track, 'Orange Sunset', bubbles along an atmospheric synth line, bouncy kicks and progressive hi-hats make up the main body of the track. An A-grade groove and one for those late afternoon sessions. 'Nova' is a punchy hypnotic roller that dips and swirls. 'Bouncin’ Tanz' is super deep with an intriguing funkiness, a fresh vibe to finish of the EP. Overall a strong release from Teluric which emits the energetic, minimal Romanian sound, that is going from strength to strength. 

Buy: Vinyl

Jamie 3:26 / Masalo / Sameed - Testify [Local Talk]

A lot of magic comes out of the Swedish house scene and Local Talk can definitely hold their hands up and shoulder some of the blame for it. Its been run by Mad Mats and Tooli since it started in 2011 with the sole aim to churn out house beats that they love. Its been a real platform over the years for artists to release a mixture of raw and stripped back house to more exotic disco flavours with hits from Art of Tones, Erol Alkan and Session Victim.

This month see's a repress of Local Talk regular Sameed, Chicago legend Jamie 3:26 and burgeoning producer Masalo. Expect low-slung disco from ‘Testify’ on the A-side, a darker side of the disco with ‘Can’t U’ and the sample-heavy jazzy house track ‘Dusty Jazz’ on the back. It’s a well timed repress with summer well and truly here, great for the long evenings burning up in the sunshine.

Buy: Vinyl / Digital


Words: Bill, Ben, Dora, Ed & Jack