Lonber Attract EP by Anthea on Air London
Air London’s quest for electronic individuality continues with Londoner Anthea’s debut solo production, stepping into the fray for the first time without Alex Celler, and with excellent results. The DJ and producer’s been a feature of the capital’s scene for years now, putting in the hours at institution Phonica, as well as playing parties as diverse as Faith, Fabric, Circo Loco and T-Bar, and her studio work with Celler brought success on Freak n’ Chic and Cecille, but that experience has been transformed into the Lonber Attract EP, marking her out as a purveyor of deep, emotive and sultry house of the highest order.
Not afraid of putting out elongated house that’s aimed directly for late-night moments of druggy abandon, the title track, enlisting the vocal talents of Leigh Kelly (as LK) enables the listener to lose themselves in its hypnotic structure. Stirring in curious spoken vox, off-beat percs, earthy stabs and a rasping bassline, the track grows organically, in no rush to reach its end point, and in the process weaving a floating, spacey narrative that makes full use of all of its ten-minute plus length. What Where employs similar tactics while focussing on a more structured approach, its bright, choppy percs allowing the mumbled, echoed vocals to float around its centre, with only a low sub and fleeting pads providing melody alongside their force. German producer tlNI’s remix of the A-side slices it in half, taking it into deep, percussive territory, an interesting, skilful counterpoint to the original’s floating patterns.
2020 Vision EP by PBR Streetgang – 2020 Vision
Leeds’ own disco miscreants PBR Streetgang have been quietly proving over the last year or so that, while their existing reputation may lean towards the d-word, their canon’s far more wide-ranging than that, with their recent EP on Hot Creations drawing the line under this once and for all. While eclecticism has always been their watchword behind the decks, Tom Thorpe and Bonar Bradberry’s production work encompasses four-four in many of its forms, and their debut on 2020 Vision – the culmination of a long association – is another step in this direction, with four tracks of fantastically groove-enveloped house.
Opener At Dez throbs along, blending analogue basslines and metallic shakers to build the spine of the track, with a falling chord pattern and vocal clip adding presence before the low end rumbles away into a minor frenzy at the midway point, changing emphasis but never diluting the groove. 2Square goes for more simplicity in form and function, the melody driving a relentless curve, flirting with vocal, slap bass and bongos in a heads-down late night dancefloor slab. Make Your Mind Up refreshes early 90s memories with filtered piano, strings and vocals before the bassline muscles in, giving it a characteristic modern edge, while Sexay Time focusses once more on rich analogue b-line melodies, using reverb and delay clevery to add colour, and keeping the vocal samples bubbling in the background. If this is the PBR house sound, then it’s clear that the groove is king. Long live the king.