dj Sulli - Things I Say (Hype & Soul Recordings)

After more than twenty years behind the decks and dozens of original releases, the outspoken artist known as Sulli has put together his first full length record, Things I Say. As the title suggests, and like most of Sulli’s original work over the years, this project has no shortage of provocative insights. The album features twelve tracks of unadulterated house music, harking back to a time before the velvet ropes and the corporate sponsorships, from a committed DJ who chooses to remain faithful to the sound and vibe of the underground.

Sulli is a product of the early ’90s US west coast house community. With tales of making pilgrimages from his Reno, Nevada home base to San Francisco’s The End Up as well as parties thrown by the renowned Wicked crew, Sulli certainly has the foundation on which to build his own underground house music reputation. In 2005 Sulli founded the label Amfibius which quickly became respected with releases from the likes of Jay Tripwire, Alexander East, and Rick Preston as well as Sulli’s own projects. Juggling his ‘day time’ profession as a respected action sports photographer with his late night musical activities, the ambitious Sulli launched Hype & Soul Recordings to further focus on his expanding output as well as his collaborative projects with fellow Reno DJ Cody Nasir aka 5657.

Things I Say is the culmination of all this activity. The twelve cuts all draw on Sulli’s house music education and represent different styles and flavors that have touched his ears (and feet) over time. There’s an emphasis on the classic underground sound of the late ’90s, which holds a special place in the hearts of many west coast house veterans, with contemporary production sounds and elements thrown tightly into the mix. On top of all this there is a bit of introspection and deep wondering about the state of the world, evidenced through the vocals on tracks like “Black and White,” “I’m Not Your Nobody,” and “My Life,” as well as in the song titles themselves, hinting at something more than your standard house music track. Of course, there are also the beats and bass lines, potent reminders of this music’s natural habitat: behind the decks and on the dance floor.

Referring to his production style as ‘soul-tech,’ Sulli does admit that, despite his hard work on Things I Say, what happens in the studio is secondary to what goes on in the nightclub or warehouse. “To me production is the natural evolution of things, but in the end it all leads back to the dance floor,” he says. “I am a DJ first, and as such I live and die by the turntables”. Spoken like a true devotee of the house music underground.

Brett Johnson - “Awesome … every track is jumping!”
Spettro - “Loving ‘I Feel You’ and its huge beats over sexy chords.”
Tyler Stadius - “Cool tracks. I like the hypnotic sounds.”
Kirsten Sees (Area38) - “Wicked tracks! A superb range of styles from raw, gritty, and filthy to deep, sultry, and seductive.”
Chris Fortier (Fade) - “Good stuff.”
Chris Udoh (Tiger Hook, Wamdue) - “Deep, hypnotic tech house … I love it!”
Pete Moss - “‘I Feel You’ is excellent.”
Joey Silvero (Distant People) - “Deep and rolling vibe … I like the synth and vocal effects.”
Deepshizzol - “Stonking release from Hype & Soul Recordings and Sulli.”
SimonG (Deep South Audio) - “Hot! This producer has been dropping nuggets for some time now.”
Bobi (Global Movement Radio Show) - “‘I Feel You’ is a warm, seductive house tune … big atmosphere here, sensual and strong!”
Alexandre Klimow (Pure Dance, Belgium) - “Great production and great sound as usual with dj Sulli. Bravo.”
Ornette (Radial Blur Radio Show) - “I’m loving the vocal work on Sulli’s tunes . dark and grimy with just the right amount of energy. The vox on ‘Nobody’ echoes the angst and moodiness of Depeche Mode. Top productions!”
Jamie Topham (CDPool) - “Strong and heavy tech-house sounds. ‘Footprints’ is pretty bloody good!”
Darrell Stout (Next Level Radio Show, WRUW FM) - “Wow! The perfect blend of tech-house going on right here through every track.”

Available now from Beatport and Traxsource.

Sulli & 5657 feat. The Skatt Bros - Walk the Night Remixes (Hype & Soul Recordings)

Hot on the heels of Hype & Soul Recordings’ well received single from Jeromy Nail comes a special sonic surprise for dance music denizens high and low. After months of detective work and negotiation, Hype & Soul forged a relationship with Richie Fontana, one of the last remaining members of renowned disco-era act The Skatt Bros, and were granted permission to release this updated version of the classic track “Walk The Night.” This is one of those cool cuts that gets nods of recognition whenever it’s heard; a slinky, dark groove with rousing vocals, hefty guitar, and serious late night appeal. Hype & Soul’s in-house production team Sulli & 5657 boldly tackle to tune with an aim to bring it to underground house music dance floors, full stop. While keeping the original vibe intact, S&5’s version pumps up the BPM and layers a stronger kick under some snappy house music rhythms making for an effective peak time version. For a take that’s closer to the original, look no further than Rong Music’s NYC disco champion DJ Spun. Spun’s Disco Edit is just that, elongating the intro and outro and keeping the depraved low slung vibe of “Walk The Night” in place. For a more mangled treatment, Spun also presents his Rong Music Distorto Mix which dubs out the original adding heaps of low end and an electric, gritty feel. Prime after hours basement tackle, here. San Francisco bay area DJ/producer Sparkinzi (Selekta Recordings) is on hand for a dubbed-out driving house music version in a Sound Factory-esque dark room vibe. Deep house elements share the stage with thick drums and a pounding bass line making for a definite DJ set enhancer. Philadelphia’s DJ Dennis, proprietor of Selekta Recordings, also tackles “Walk The Night” with big house music energy in his sights. Like Sulli & 5657, Dennis uses the vocal, surrounding it with beefier house music rhythms and a rolling, solid low end to update the cut for today’s nightclub speakers. Finally, TekFreaks are a duo based in San Francisco but also frequent inhabitants of Burning Man’s Black Rock City. They take the jam onto the playa and hang it outside during a sandstorm resulting in a ragged-edged electro rumbler that shows elements of the original now ordained with pink fur boots and giant steam punk goggles. All in all, these six tracks make up a diverse and exciting package that confidently thrusts The Skatt Bros into the year 2012.

Nick Warren - “Wonderful stuff. Spun’s disco edit is like the `glitter band on E.”
Ewan Pearson - “It’s such a classic - so it’s Spun’s Disco edit for me here.”
Justin Robertson - “The DJ Spun edit is top revival pressure. I’ve been playing this a lot again recently.”
Jim Stanton (Horse Meat Disco) - “At last someone who knows what they’re doing with an untouchable record like this! Bravo SPUN on his disco edit and dark dubby thing. 5 stars!”
Mark Farina - “Great. Classic tune.”
Phat Phil Cooper - “Great, loved the original … nice freshen up of the classic track.”
Chris Duckenfield - “Spun manfully handles this big beast!”
Severino (Horse Meat Disco) - “Major release! DJ Spun’s edit is my fave, and the Sparkinzi mix is very good, too.”
JD Twitch (Optimo) - “All time classic that I feared was untouchable but some nice reworks here.”
OOFT! - “Spun’s Disco Edit will come in handy for sure. Also digging the Sparkinzi remix - big house!”
DJ Rocca (Ajello) - “Great remix package on this timeless classic.”
Cosmo Vitelli - “This is forever in my box. The 2 Spun remixes/edits will be very useful.”
Deadbeat Disco Radio Show - “At first we thought ‘oh no- you just can’t!’ A few listens to both of Spun’s mixes changed that. True to the original - this is the key. Also, Tekfreaks make a valiant effort to modernise the sound.”
DJ Morpheus (Lysergic Factory) - “I loved and played the original version to bits, but the DJ Spun mixes, and the DJ Sulli & 5657 mix, and the excellent breakbeat mix from Sparkinzi are all adding something fresh to the old classic. Top stuff!”
Michael Stukes (Mystic Vybes Radio Show) - “This is how you revisit a classic!”

Additional support from Rayko, Robin Lee (Faze Action), Sleazy McQueen, Dirt Crew, Tiago, Justin Harris (Freaks), Gavin Hardkiss, Social Disco Club, DJ Schwa (Shades Of Gray), Makossa & Megablast, Eric Duncan (Still Going), Stereo 77, Nico De Ceglia, Jota Wagner (Colors Sound System), Rick Preston, and Psychemagik.

Available now from Beatport.

Jeromy Nail - Nothing's True (Hype & Soul Recordings)

On the heels of their slammin’ first release, Reno, Nevada’s Hype & Soul Recordings have upped the ante with their second installment of True House Jamz courtesy of the Northwest’s best kept secret: Jeromy Nail.

A staple in the west coast house community, Jeromy has been quietly going about his business of captivating Seattle and Portland dance floors for over a decade. While known and respected for his prowess on the decks, Nail has only recently come out of the proverbial studio closet and shown himself to be an absolutely gifted production artist. This release not only shines with Nail’s talents but also backs them up with remixes by some legendary underground figures.

Opening up the release is Jeromy’s original version of “Nothing’s True,” a lush trip into after-hours deep house territory featuring hypnotic synth lines, building pads, and effective vocal placements. Hanssen, AKA Seattle’s Bob Hansen from Jacob London fame, is up first on remix duty. Hanssen’s mix successfully captures an old school vibe within the context of his evolved contemporary programming. The third version of “Nothing’s True” comes from Costa Rica’s rising stars Mobius Strum (husband and wife duo Leo and Eles Falfan), who have been tearing up dance floors recently with their heady live sets as well as a string of well-received original productions. Here they move the track into a deeper, more disco-inflected groove with snappy high hats and a funky bass line.

The second track on the single, “GTFO,” is a complete departure from the lush deepness of “Nothing’s True.” The original mix relies on big tribal rhythms to back up techy synth stabs and a badass vocal snippet. Taking a cue from the new school, Johnny Fiasco's Fakes & Phonies Mix steps it up with his signature driving tribal layers that evolve into a finale of moderately acidic, pitched-out, synth stabs. Dance floor proven! Completing the package, Reno OGs Sulli & 5657 close the shades with a pumping low end number built around stripped-down tribal elements and a haunting filtered loop. Backed-up with those wicked vox stabs, a bass drop at the half way point shakes the building.

Demarkus Lewis - “Johnny Fiasco … need I say more?”
Brett Johnson - “Nice set of tracks … will play. Cool Eddie Murphy sample, by the way.”
Pezzner - “Fantastic music all around. I’m really connecting with super shoegazey version that Hanssen put together.”
Giom - “The Mobius Strum remix is for me.”
Pete Moss - “The original of ‘Nothing’s True’ is the one for me. Killer.”
Inland Knights - “Liking both the Johnny Fiasco and Mobius Strum remixes here.”
DJ Craig C (Pound Boys) - “This is one sexy-ass deep house release!”
Manuel Sahagun - “The Mobius Strum remix made me jump out of my chair!”
Chuck Daniels - “Johnny Fiasco’s mix sounds awesome!”
Al Bradley (3am Recordings) - “Johnny Fiasco drops a deep and techy bomb on his ‘GTFO’ remix, and the Mobius Strum reworking of ‘Nothing’s True’ is outstanding - a sublime slice of bass-heavy house. Love it!”
DJ Mes (Guesthouse) - “Fiasco kills it!”
UnaBombers - “Love the old school / nu skool jack vibe of ‘GTFO.’”
Tony D’Onghia (Radio Koper-Capodistria) - “My choice goes to the Mobius Strum remix. Gorgeous groove.”
Russell Deeks (This Is Why We Dance) - “‘Lush deepness’ is right! ‘Nothing’s True’ is wicked.” Charl Chaka (Radio 1 Dubai) - “My man Fiasco kills it. That’s house music right there!”

Additional support from Luciano, Claude Von Stroke, DJ T., Andy Cato (Groove Armada), Orde Meikle (Slam), Nick Holder, Robert Owens, Tyree Cooper, Tommy Largo, Omid 16B, Benji Candelario, DJ Harri (Sub Club), C-Rock, Jason Hodges, DJ Linus, Onionz, and Doc Link.

Available now from Beatport.

Sulli & 5657 feat. Adam Baptiste - I Like It (Hype & Soul Recordings)

Veteran west coast artists Sean Sullivan and Cody Nasir, teaming up under the name Sulli & 5657, are proud to announce the launch of their new label Hype & Soul Recordings. To get things moving they have solicited the vocal stylings of noted Swedish vocalist Adam Baptiste for a hard hitting house music track aimed squarely at the floor, titled “I Like It.”

Sean Sullivan AKA Sulli has a long history in the west coast house scene, inspired by such bay area legends as DJ Spun and Wicked crew DJs Thomas and Jeno. His Amfibius label was a definite player on the scene, releasing vinyl singles from the likes of Jay Tripwire, Alexander East, and Rick Preston. His recent activities have found him collaborating with Cody Nasir, a prominent DJ from the Lake Tahoe/Reno scene, as Sulli & 5657. Together they’ve combined Sulli’s ‘soul-tech’ sound with 5657’s funkier leanings for a fresh dance-floor house music style.

This first Hype & Soul release features five takes on “I Like It" for a package tackling a few different house music vibes. The S5 Tech Mix features a stripped down vocal treatment over deepish tech house elements and a modulating synth line. A low slung bass-line adds a suggestion of dub to the mix. The Drop 2 Dub mix flips the script with a 70 BPM deceleration into tree cutting synths over dub breaks. A climb back up to 127 leads to a pumping tech house outro (stylishly answering the question “gotnee dubstep?”). Sulli’s Murky Revamp is a 120 BPM ode to the old school with classic vocal snippets strategically placed over chunkin’ house beats and an updated big room sawtooth synth. Let it rip! The Synco Dub takes a more proggy approach with syncopated rhythms and a chunky house foundation. Finally, a remix from Reno, Nevada’s Sean Carlson AKA DJ Ahns (Amfibius. Aspect Audio) takes “I Like It” deep and minimal with heady drums and abstract bass drops. These tunes are baked and ready to go!

DK Watts (Short Bus Kids) - “Really nice release. I used to rock the original on Amfibius before.”
Pedro Goya (Troia) - “DJ Ahn did a great job on his remix. Bouncing as hell, this one. Good usage on the vocal shouts. Groovy!”
Joey Silvero (Distant People) - “Heavy, heavy bass line, just blows you away. This will move the floors and get some reactions in the clubs.”
CheckPoint Charlie (MyCuppaT) - “Wow - what a first release! S5 Tech and Drop 2 Dub mixes are the absolute tits! Dirty, naughty and fantastic!”
Bobi (Global Movement, Macedonia) - “All the mixes are beautiful. I am looking forward to playing it loud this weekend!”
Cherokee (Cherry Global Radio Show) - “FRESH!! I like all remixes will certainly play!”
Igor Marijuan (Ibiza Sonica FM) - “Love it, thanks!”
Tony D’Onghia (Radio Koper-Capodistria) - “I Like the S5 Synco Mix. It sounds like summertime!”
DJ Phil T (DJ Times) - “Love the big, chunky beats.”

Additional support from Roger Sanchez, Claude Von Stroke, Omid 16B, Paul van Dyk, DJ Style, Nico De Ceglia, and Matt Star.

Available now from Beatport and Stompy.