Charles Green - New Found Energy
Over, or during lockdown I had a few extended mixing sessions at my place going well into the early hours of the morning. During this time I realised that a sudden switch in mood can sometimes provide you with the extra energy when in a festival or clubbing environment, it took me to be removed from that situation to explore this idea in it’s full potential. Some realisations happen at the strangest times and for me this one was that rather than playing heavier and heavier, actually bring the mood down slightly into some more deeper grooves can push the brain into a new state of focus. It’s not like I didn’t know these things beforehand, but rather that everything just made sense in a different way, a break through perhaps. Here are some early morning grooves that can keep that energy alive, sometimes sparse, never boring, always soulful.
The Martian - Medicine Man
The ever illusive Martian here on Red Planet, a label that has built up some cult status over the years - of which I own a fair few. I have a habit of finding certain labels then suddenly wanting to buy a good amount of their back catalogue, the Red Planet bug was a few years back now. This one on a double pack and is such a simple groove but just has some organic nature between the natural percussion and bizarre evolving electronics sprinkled over the top. Add a harp like instrument at the end, for maximum effect of course..
C.K. - Log Off
Some overwhelming sense of euphoria is captured in this little groover. One I purchased a while back and admittedly not played a whole bunch, but when layered over the right groove it can add that sense of musicality that is sometimes missing. Somewhere between Tech House and early UK Hardcore.
Um River - Night Ceremony
This is one of those records which fits into the newer UK techno/broken beat kind of area in terms of sound. Seemingly, the label had two releases back in 2017 and has not been around since. Sometimes when it comes to owning records the difference in searching for tracks is that you have no idea about the person who made it but more so, judging on the sonics alone. This one sounds like an intro for something to me or a good bridge in between styles.
Eco Tourist - Magelonic
Most lists that I could make on my record collection could include an early ‘UK’ Techno or Warp influenced release, as they bridged so many gaps at that time. Here we have something from Plaid and Dave Hill under Eco Tourist, release via Ifach back in 1994. I always think what an interesting time to have been alive this must have been, due to the amount of breakthrough sounds being produced. Often the UK around the early 90s is talked about due to the Jungle / Garage breakthrough that was happening, I guess down to the level of popularity. But on the more Electronic side of things there were also some incredible things happening. This label has a multitude of interesting releases, which are not always cheap but I can guarantee it will be a record which will bring some interesting textures in the mix.
Urban Jungle - Bad Man
Whilst on subject I guess we could also include this early UK roller from Black Dog. If you listen to any tracks coming out around 94-95 in the Jungle realm it’s quite possible there’s a sample from an early Black Dog record in there, I think this must be down to the atmospherics they were hanging to achieve with early digital synthesis. You can hear in this one they combine a rolling Dub baseline and vocals with more contemporary digital sounds to create a really nice crossover. I’d say possibly one of their most underrated jams.
Phlash & Friends - Look At What We've Done
This record fits more into the Deep House realm I guess but sometimes within that world you can achieve something which matches no other in terms of vibe. Again it’s using a lot of organic sounding drums or instruments alongside electronic sounds to gain a deeper sound scape. Phil Asher captures some sense of melancholy here which really this style can only portray sometimes, alongside Mathew Herbert I think they both captured this perfecetly. Give into the groove..
Mixworks - Berlin Dub
It’s one of those from around 2008 time where the ‘Minimal’ sound was getting big, lots of throw away sounds from around that time as everyone was copying the narrative. However, there are some gems to be had and this one seems to have some low key energy which always works in the early hours.
Velv.93 - Sense
Well, as the name suggests it’s Velv.93 and there are only 93 copies of this one out there, making it a bit tough to get on wax. If you do manage to get it then rest assured that low end will perk some ears up when you might need it. I always find grooves like this are better for the come down than the warm up, for some reason the sluggish vibe almost lends itself to sunrise, seductively dragging you into the new chapter.
The Phantasy - Love Will See Us Through
I remember when I got the All Possible Worlds email in my inbox for this and the Metatron EP. Naturally it was buy on sight, but at the time he’d never put out a Phantasy release so it was complete buy blind territory. Obviously when it had arrived I had no idea why I doubted the Prince’s ability to create timeless grooves. This one probably pick of the bunch for me, a low slung Mr Fingers esc loop with floating chords and soulful vocals layered over the top. The way this guy produces this style of music is totally unique for me, always making interesting and one off snare rolls or edits, often the vocals aren’t even in time (check early Traumprinz releases to really get this). As said before timeless house grooves really, I think as left field as you can go I would always have a deep underlying love for this style of track.
Pryda - Armed
Am I really putting an Eric Prydz track in a picks list you ask? Well yes. I tell you why, because part of what I love is playing records that occasionally cause controversy over what people ‘think’ they like. Often we are quick to judge based on opinions we have, rather than taking the art for it’s pure form. This one a slightly progressive number but when the strings kick after the break I have a fizzle of extra serotonin dancing around in my brain every time. I’ve been listening to this for years but recently I have heard a few DJs drop this such as Paramida and Job Jobse, so probably less of a secret weapon now but that takes away none of it’s beauty.