Jam & Spoon
Odyssey To Anyoona (Markus Schulz vs. Jam El Mar Remix)
‘Anyoona’s been around the remix block a few times. No one’s done it in tandem with one of the original artists though, which sets up an interesting equation. What unfolds is a revision that further ups its entrancing qualities, while dialling down the original’s percussive quirks. Teamed with lump-in-the-throat pad and chord swoops, its drop culminates with a singularly punchy final act.
'Came Here To Forget'
Future Sound Of Egypt
Twenty years ago, Viper’s ‘Titty Twister’ was the first track to recognise the club floor merits of Duran Duran’s ‘Save It Till The Morning After’ riff. ‘Came Here To Forget’ reframes that lamenting lilt in a melodic trance context. Crucially though, it’s not overly reliant on it, using it as a significant sub-melody to set up a better yet mainline.
“A travesty” was how one online commentator railed against Nick Bracegirdle’s ‘Gorecki’ cover. I suspect they may be significantly invested in the Lamb original. If you’re not, what you’re likely to hear is an interpretation produced (and sung) by people with a clear and present love of the source material. The only detectable intention is bringing a worthy, if somewhat-overlooked-these-days trip-hop classic classily up-to-date.
Purveyor of trance almost wholly effervescent, Giuseppe is the last artist you’d imagine to ‘go techno’. Here we are though, and oh boy has he thrown himself into it. ‘Legacy’ is a breakneck fast, anvil-hard, zero-punches-pulled trip-rip down the European techno wormhole. As dark and disconcertingly ominous as it gets, you may never view Ottaviani in exactly the same light again.
‘Mika’ does not wield a mainline of the classic weight of, say, ‘L’Esperanza’ or ‘Destination Sunshine’. It’s arguably within touching distance though, which hopefully should give you some idea of the level of primetime elevation we’re talking about. If you’re looking for much more zip in 2018, you may be found wanting.
Iversoon & Alex Daf
Iversoon & Alex Daf knew exactly what they were going for when they made ‘Nagoya’. Specifically that’s a cool and cruising harmonic trancer, aiming straight for your melodic Achilles. Aside from a fraction too much distortion in a couple of its developmental sequences, the word’s all good. With a captivating (if teasingly fleeting) vocal and a fully authentic vibe to its most prominent riff, this’ll work a treat on more progressively disposed floors.
Marco V & Paul Denton
Any trancer that intones words like “bust”, “bankers” and “depression” in its vocal needs to be beyond confident in its cheer-raising abilities elsewhere. ‘Network’s unexpectedly grooving b-line begins the upswing, as does its lively (and loud) percussion drive. The thrust of its leadline sees it onto dry land, but you have to wonder how much further this would have gone sans vocal.
Aly & Fila vs Scott Bond & Charlie Walker
Future Sound Of Egypt
While I like a bit of opera in my trance, I’m not a fan of ‘Shadow’s. Its theatrics tip into the overblown. That notwithstanding, what you’re looking at here is another cross-the-board A&F (& Co) slam-dunk. Various parts and elements jostle to be MVP. Its impressive scene-setting super-string riff initiator is an early shout. It’s actually its mainline — fit to burst with the heartfelt stuff — that prevails, though.