Jam & Spoon
Follow Me (Jerome Isma-Ae Remix)
It’s almost become de rigueur that the party season be defined by a functional, yet undeniably effective rework of a record that was kind of a big deal about 25 years ago (raise your hands, ‘Age Of Love’ and ‘Cafe Del Mar’). Early '90s classic ‘Follow Me’ is up next, admittedly an inspired choice that’s positively ripe for a rework — and Jerome Isma-Ae deserves kudos for smashing it out of the park. A progressive bomb that’s certifiably crossed over to the house and techno festivals, his genius move is to rework the iconic rise-and-fall synths of the original into a blockbuster breakdown, making sure he’s prepared one hell of a drop to follow it up.
'All I’ve Got (Mathame Remix)'
Another massive vocal anthem from RÜFÜS DU SOL earns another appropriately huge remix. The likes of Yotto, Sasha and countless others have demonstrated time and again the Australian trio provide the ideal framework for a killer club rework, though Italy’s Mathame turn in a remix that stands out in particular. Taking the core vocal refrain and working it into shimmering, richly textured soundscapes before really slamming in the four-four, the dramatic moments come thick and fast in the form of brassy synth stabs, that are beautifully detailed. Mathame worked hard on this, and it shows in what’s definitely more than your run-of-the-mill remix.
ANNA & Kittin
ANNA and Miss Kittin collaborating is exciting enough of a prospect that you wanna give it a tick of approval before even hearing it. Fortunately, neither are afraid to blow the roof off with sheer gusto, and all three mixes of ‘Forever Ravers’ are thunderously huge. Kittin nails her vocal delivery to the point where the line between irony and sincerity just dissolves, and it’s packing the same melodic techno ‘oomph’ that ANNA has demonstrated time and again she’s such a pro at delivering.
The B-side on David Broaders’ ‘Everlasting’ EP for the Pure Trance stable wades successfully into deeper progressive territory, for a record that’s imbued with momentum aplenty thanks to some rather grunty, powerful synth bass and some tasty 2000-era progressive trance vibes. One of those standout records that slides right in perfectly between the progressive and trance scenes.
'Need You feat Thomas Oliver'
An early single from the upcoming new Tinlicker LP on Anjunabeats sees the Dutch duo reuniting with their favourite vocalist for what’s perhaps their most effective pairing to date. Thomas Oliver’s vocals are as warm and seductive as ever; his lyrical themes are a little more obvious this time around, though his delivery is just so good it’ll defeat any cynicism. Fittingly, Tinlicker lay off the vocal processing this time to just let it speak for itself, focusing instead on seriously revving up the melodic, progressive euphoria. Silky smooth and irresistible.
If the aforementioned ‘Stimulation’ provides the laid-back peak for the chilled component of Hernan Cattaneo’s new ‘Sunsetstrip’ compilation, fellow Argentinian Arias provides the accompanying breakout moment for when the driving, deep percussion explodes into a late-stage melodic payoff. Imbued with the same sexy Latin percussion and melodic mystique that’s defined so much of the excellent prog emanating from the South American scene, the slow build towards the trancey climax of ‘Púrpura’ makes it a perfect peak-time weapon.
Last Night On Earth
The first Sasha solo offering in more than a year doesn’t rank among his more memorable efforts, sounding rather indistinct alongside recent bombs like ‘Out Of Time’ — though it’s nonetheless a solid and perfectly functional effort that’s allegedly been grabbing attention in his sets. Brooding and competently arranged in its builds and breaks, it’s the haunting, reversed-pitch vocal snippets that offer a fleeting glimpse of that ol' Sasha magic.
Hernan Cattaneo & Soundexile
It’s a fine day indeed when Argentinian progressive god Hernan Cattaneo decides to drop an entire double-disc blend of immaculately mixed tunes for the Balance imprint. His ‘Sunsetstrip’ mix is packed with gems, and ‘Stimulation’ makes for a fitting climax to this opening sunset-themed mix, the ideal mid-tempo melodic groover to perfectly channel the spine-tingling vibes of a South American progressive party. Importantly, Cattaneo and Soundexile don’t overplay their hand with their harmony, or let it outshine their groove.