Dirty Dancing: April 2012

Greetings electro fans, welcome back to another Dirty Dancing! Summer is almost upon us and with the promise of several large dance festivals looming on the horizon, it’s time to get well and truly in the mood!

Once again I have a wide variety of hand-picked electronic new releases to tempt you with, from ethereal minimalism to speaker punishing dubstep darkness, so if you’re ready, let’s get stuck in…

Double A-side single: Dub Mafia – Danger/Breakneck (Dub Mafia)

The latest offering from Dub Mafia is set to be one of my sounds of the summer. 'Danger' – a seamless blend of old school vibes and modern dance funkiness, layered with Eva Lazarus’ warming vocals is an absolute pleasure. No less impressive is 'Breakneck', balancing the upbeat vibe of its sister track with a pulsing dub monster, interwoven with a hint of jungle drum and bass.

Energetic throughout and guaranteed to get people moving, Dub Mafia are definitely ones to keep track of for the party season.

Bootleg single: A.Skillz and Nick Thayer – Foreigner: Cold as Ice (Authority)

I have to admit that I was a little apprehensive when this appeared in the inbox. ‘Cold as Ice’ has been reworked, remixed and sampled so many times (perhaps most famously by M.O.P in 2007), that it seemed unlikely that anything fresh could be produced without sounding a little boring.

Fortunately this is not the case here, thanks to the innovation and creativity of A. Skills and Nick Thayer - and a large helping of bass synth! The original version is sped up slightly to match the bouncy bass line and synth effects but not (thank God) enough to make Foreigner sound like chipmunks.

Album: Jake Dubber – Bring on the Cannibal Android Robots! (Cognitive Dissonance)

Listen to the first (and title) track of Bring on the Cannibal Android Robots! and you could be forgiven for assuming that Jake Dubber is hovering on the edge of mainstream dubstep, just a few radio plays away from joining the ‘wub wub wubbers’ determined to take over the world with the stereotypical dubstep sound.

But you would be wrong. Look a little deeper into the Cannibal Robot’s heart and you will find a much darker, twisted beast. Yes, the ear hammering dubstep drops and hooks are still there, but added to the mix are a host of sinister noises and undertones, rife with haunting synth moods, waiting to pounce on the first unsuspecting listener. Stay in the underground Jake, we love you here….

Album: Michael Canitro – Playboy Sessions (Defected Records)

Whatever your feelings towards the Playboy brand, you have to admit that Michael Canitro has done a pretty good job of mixing the Sessions album here. Effortlessly smooth and of course, very sexy, the mix hovers somewhere between house, classic disco and light dance for a genuinely enjoyable, pre-summer listening experience.

Pretty much delivering what it says on the tin, the Playboy Sessions may take a while to be accepted into the inner circles of underground dance culture, but lingers just outside of the mainstream to still be cool.

Guilty pleasure? Possibly. Veritable DJ’ing lesson? Most definitely.

Single: Talk In Colour – Rocking Horse [Portico Remix] (Authority)

Some of you may remember Talk In Colours’ previous single, 'Nightshifts', being featured in the first edition of Dirty Dancing. 'Rocking Horse' continues in much the same vein, with characteristic haunting vocals and drifting synth.

The track is enhanced further with input from The Portico Quartet, also previously featured on The Music Fix. Their characteristic minimalism is apparent throughout and works well alongside an already fairly minimal outline.

Beautifully arranged and quietly brilliant, a full album from Talk In Colour would not at all be a bad thing to hope for.

Single: Sub Focus - Out The Blue feat. Alice Gold (UKF)

Although softened slightly at the start by Alice Gold's vocals, 'Out The Blue' soon transforms into an energy rich, drum and bass anthem - standard stuff from the mighty Sub Focus. The drop comes early and from then on you may as well just hang on and enjoy the ride!

Expect plenty of memorable signature synth and a driving bass line to match, from a producer with clearly a great deal of experience in creating music for people to go absolutely mental to.

Sub Focus - 'Out The Blue' by Sub Focus

Album: Kris Menace - Electric Horizon (Authority)

Mixing innovative nu-disco with glitched semi-experimentalism, Electric Horizon is a superbly crafted, super cool journey into all that modern dance music should encompass. By turns funky and slightly dreamy, a cocktail of space age synth effects are employed to match equally sublime bass lines.

There's perhaps a hint at old school disco roots, but refreshingly, the album largely looks to the future - the title track in particular, which is laden with bleeps and technological noodlings. Pure electronic class from start to finish.

EP: Gosteffects – Kick the Bass (Afterlife)

It’s becoming increasingly rare nowadays to find an EP with more than two tracks on it. Either that or artists release a single and bulk it up to EP status with four or five remixes by people you’ve never heard of (yes, you know who you are).

Thankfully, this is not the case with Kick The Bass, which more than delivers on quantity as well as quality, delivering massive, sexy, room shaking bass lines lodged between dubstep and house, coupled with flawless, growly synth overlays. It’s a well put together, guaranteed party starter of an EP which (I really hope) is headed for big things in the British summer party scene.

Gosteffects - Kick the Bass EP [Out Now on AFTERLIFE] by Gosteffects

That’s all for this month folks, as always I appreciate any feedback or comments so feel free to get in touch at the bottom of the page. Have a great month; hope you are enjoying the build-up to festival season as much as I am and are using your time wisely by researching as many great new artists and gigs as possible. Don’t stay in!

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