“We felt really honoured when Damian Lazarus asked us to do an album for Crosstown Rebels,” deep tech Venezuelan duo Fur Coat tell DJMag.com. “This is a special label for us, and basically the dream for our debut album release. When we started writing music together, we always had the label in mind – we just didn’t know it was going to happen so fast.”
It certainly has happened fast for Israel Sunshine and Sergio Munoz. First Lazarus got them to remix Russ Yallop in 2010, then their cosmic disco ‘Space Ballad’ cut kicked off, thanks in no large part to an enormous Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs remix.
Now their ‘Mind Over Matter’ album is dropping, but the guys haven’t come out of nowhere. They met at a house party in their home city of Caracas in Venezuela in 2004. “From that day on we built up a really nice friendship, to the point where we consider ourselves like brothers,” they say.
They embarked on separate DJ careers for several years, Sergio as Delete and Israel under his own name, before deciding to combine forces when in Barcelona together in summertime a couple of years ago.
“We have always shared the same taste in music, we already played many times together and really enjoyed working as this duo, so what we were missing was finding a sound of our own,” they say. “We just sat down in the studio and developed the whole concept.”
Sergio tells DJMag.com how they both share a love of disco, funk, salsa and hip-hop. “Even though there's an age gap, we are really connected music-wise,” he says. Sergio’s dad was into DJ culture, and the young Sergio started mixing at 14 before landing a residency at the Boogie Nights parties in Caracas. Israel, meanwhile, really got the bug after a trip to Ibiza in 2000, and they haven’t really looked back.
Their album is a gorgeous mélange of deep tech and found-sound house, inspired by “life, food, our girls, trips, day to day experiences, special DJ sets…” they say. Although there are choice samples of things like the Venezuelan speaking clock, this isn't a body of work where they've just nicked a few choice samples from classic old tracks.
It’s an album rich with vocal contributions, including a chirpy, cut-up r&b vocal on ‘Falls Away’ from Mel Blatt, the member of ‘90s girl band All Saints who isn’t Shaznay or an Appleton married to a Liam. Elsewhere, seductive whispering chanteuse Rap Lisa guests on ‘Those Days’, and there are warm organic Metro Area basslines on tracks like a jaunty ‘Going Nowhere’ and latest saucy single ‘You & I’ which references “Cocaine and ketamine”.
The guys are about to set off touring the arse out of this album, and so have to dash off before we get the chance to ask them about their moniker – and the topless girl on their album sleeve...