Brett Johnson - Illusion (Subplot Recordings)

Brett Johnson fills a critical role in house music’s underground history. His work for iconic imprints like Classic, Seasons, and 2020 Vision displayed a playful nature missing from most of the electronic landscape. Coupled with recent projects on Get Physical, Visionquest, and Freerange, Brett’s abilities as an innovative artist are undeniable. Subplot Recordings is happy to welcome Brett to the label with three versions of a dizzy concoction called “Illusion.” Each selection is wholly unique and showcases the versatility of Brett’s brain.

B’s Acid House Dub of “Illusion” builds on underground house foundations, riding cutoffs of dusty 303 devices. This acid excursion dances through rounds of playful interpretation keeping bodies moving and brains quaking. B’s Rave Mix is an unforgettable favorite on the project, with stunted Arp baselines and Brett’s classic percussion design. B’s Lost in Thought Mix tempers dizzying effects and sonic spills. An implied heady house jam, Brett covers impressive sonic territory. Listening too closely might drive one a little looney.

Diz Washington (Classic Music Company) – “Just what the doctor ordered!”
Severino (HorseMeatDisco) – “Oh yes, bring it!”
Hector Moralez (Fries & Bridges) – “Nice acid!”
Anthony Mansfield (Roam Recordings) – “Gimme dat Aceeeeed.”
Al Bradley (3am Recordings) – “Class as usual from Brett. The super spaced out ‘Lost in Thought’ mix is the pick for me, wicked.”
Jimmy Le Mac (Loophole Recordings) - “This is a banger.”
Rees Urban (5 Magazine) – “Love the acid mix, killer.”
Snooba (Radio Panik) – “Infectious Energy.”
Robot84 / Scott Ferguson (Paper Recordings) – “Oh yes. Banging Acid house, love it.”
Simon Kirk (Stag Beetle Radio Show) – “Oh yes. This is the business. 3 storming tracks with the “rave mix” being my fave. 10/10”

Available Now From: Beatport, Traxsource, iTunes, And Spotify.

Patrick Gideon - I Hope You Robot (Soulgrab Records)

Soulgrab Records is a recent addition into the ring of Texas house music labels, proving there's hardly just a 'Lone Star' in that state's electronic music community. For Soulgrab's second release they touch down in Dallas with three original productions from Patrick Gideon. Titled I Hope You Robot, the EP's individual cuts are each made up of very different parts. From an early age, starting in his early teens, there's something in Gideon's wiring that has made him seek out his own methods of programming, whether it be DJ'ing parties or producing music. He broke with the predominant sound at his early rave experiences with explorations into house music. This desire to break with the status quo in favor of more personal pursuits is shown by the range of this work. "El Camino" is a minimal and deep tech-house vehicle with a meaningful message provided by an expertly placed vocal sample breaking through the hypnotism of the track's laid back lounge appeal. The slower "City Rhythm" serves as a complete 'one-eighty,' busting out unexpectedly in a broken electro funk and nu-disco party-starting blend. Once again nothing like its predecessor, "Shameless" is a flashy, hard-hitting piece poised to drive the dance floor into a frenzy with tires burnt-out and squealing like its pitched up synths. All together, I Hope You Robot will have listeners unable to sit still -- much like its creator.

Da Sunlounge (Myna Music / Bambino) - “‘Shameless’ is cool … nice, chunky underground house.”
Marques Wyatt - “Nice beats.”
Robert Owens - “Cool tracks.”
Soul Minority (Kolour / Pack Up And Dance) - “‘Shameless’ for me here … nice work on vocals.”
Alvaro Hylander (DeepWit Recordings / Balance Alliance) - “‘El Camino’ has some proper robotic groove to it … lovely!”
Daz-I-Kue (Future Soul Records / Bugz In The Attic) - “Liking this.”
Distant People (SSRadio / Foliage) - “Yeah, love that bounce and bass … ‘Shameless’ is my favorite here!”
J. Caprice (High Maintenance / Juiced Music) - “Very smooth release … looking forward to hear more from Patrick in the future!”
Graeme Park - "This is quite appealing."
Matt Prehn (Oh So Coy / Large Music) - “Intresting textures here … will try.”
Vincent Kwok (Eight-Fifteen / Transport Recordings) - “I love the funkiness of 'City Rhythms'.”
Kid Enigma (Great Lakes Audio / 1200 Traxx) - “I really love ‘Shameless’.”
Sumsuch (Colour and Pitch / Mega Jawns) - "Awesome trio of tunes … I'll be playing at least one of them tonight!"
Taigo Onez (The Essence Radio Show, Chicago) - “Jackin' … quality release from Patrick Gideon!”
SimonG (Deep South Audio, New Zealand) - “Smoking quality … ‘El Camino’ is the bomb … I’m looking forward to more from this label.”
Deron Delgado (Stompy) - “I’m diggin' ‘City Rhythms’ … the other two tracks are solid deep house, too.”
DJ Nova (Rodon FM, Greece) - “The deep funk of ‘El Camino’ -- with its echoes, space effects, and random keys -- is a carefully done, dubbed-out house piece.”
Al Bradley (3am Recordings / Fabric) - “From the stabby, hypnotic grooves on ‘Shameless’, to the bouncy Brett Johnson-esque beats on ‘El Camino’, and the brilliant ‘80s future-disco on ‘City Rhythms’, this is a winner all round … top class EP!”
Michael Fossati (Spirit Of House Web Zine) - “Utterly sexy slice of deep house.”

Available now from Beatport and Juno Download.

Abstrakt Audio - Back 2 Basics + Remixes (Whiskey Pickle Records)

For its final offering of 2013 Whiskey Pickle Records is proud to present the second release from Austin’s own rising star of house music, Abstrakt Audio (the ‘nom de plume’ of one Fern Argüello). Producing since the age of 15, starting with a Roland TR–909 and a banged-up Juno–60 synthesizer, Fern has always been drawn to the sounds of ’80s boogie and Italo disco thanks to his father’s hip record collection. Previously, Fern was a part of production duo Retrovox with Rey Aguilar, releasing a number of tracks for PBR Recordings and playing shows and festivals all over Texas and Mexico. His latest project, Abstrakt Audio, soldiers on with “Back 2 Basics”, a dance floor monster of Kraken proportions, unleashed from the murky depths and sure to wreak havoc from coast to coast. A root-chakra-rumbling organ bass line carries the tune over garage-influenced rhythms while dubby vocals punctuate its deep pads. The single is then rounded out by a trio of fine, equally monstrous remixes. Remixer du jours Vanilla Ace and Donny Bravo twist the original into a beautifully melancholy masterpiece that ebbs and flows around sparkling beats and filtered chords. Austin’s up-and-coming mystery duo Eagle Mountain take a classic ’90s flip on the track and jack it up with all manner of vintage percussion and throwback flavors. Another fellow Austinite, Robert Roman, minces the original into tiny bits with his sparse and brooding version, amplifying its deep leanings and taking the listener 10,000 leagues below.

Tensnake - “This is a nice deep house single.”
Q-Burns Abstract Message - “It’s gonna be the Vanilla Ace & Donny Bravo remix for me … I dig the rolling synth work and melody.”
Alinka (Classic Music Company / Plus Plus) - “Solid release … I’ll play every mix!”
Al Bradley (3am Recordings) - “Great release. All four cuts have the right ingredients for ace club action. The original stands out for me as well as the Vanilla Ace & Donny Bravo mix … it’s a wicked stabby affair.”
Alkalino (Estimativa / Audaz Recordings) - “The Robert Roman remix is the deep one for me.”
Carlo Gambino (Midnight Social Recordings) - “I’m feeling this! The Robert Roman mix is on the money … that bass line is a killer.”
Richard Hardcastle (Solid State / All Out War) - “Love all versions, Robert Roman’s mix wins out on deepness, Vanilla Ace and Donny Bravo win on the dance floor, but I’ll be playing all these to establish an outright winner. Great stuff.”
Trevor Vichas (Robsoul / Flaptraxx) - “The Eagle Mountain remix is cool … nice ’90s vibe.”
Adam Collins (Euphoria Records / Omni A.M.) - “This one is awesome. Trippy and deep. Nice.”
Bruce Tantum (TimeOut NY / East Village Radio) - “And a nice one to end the year on! Loving the boogie-tech groove and overall feel of the Vanilla Ace - Donny Bravo version.”
Michael Fossati (Spirit of House) - “This is a truly mind-blowing deep house gem spreading a mesmerizing late night feel you can’t resist to dance to.”
David Dunne (Hed Kandi / Galaxy FM) - “Niceness!”
Jaysoul (S:R Soundsystem) - “Stellar work on this one … sparks nostalgia.”
Deadbeat Disco Radio Show - “Yeah … chunky! Robert Roman’s mix is some great wobble but still has some real shuffle. One for the graveyard shift. The original sounds like it came off tape from 15 years ago … not a bad thing! We’ll have some of this.”
Mygaff (Play FM, Dublin) - “Finally people are getting back to fecking basics! Love this pack …”

Available now from Beatport and Stompy.

Spettro and Trent Johnson feat. T-Rent $ - Side by Side / Bring It Back (DingBat Records)

DingBat Records claims to have the “best in baroque funk” but, until now, no one has really been sure what that means. If such a sound actually exists it’s manifested in the new EP from Spettro and Trent Johnson, Side by Side. With past releases between them for the likes of King Street, Bush Records, and Nightshade Music, the veteran Texas house music duo has been making waves with cool dance floor cuts running the gamut from deep house to big room breaks. Joined on this single by the mysterious vocalist T-Rent $ (though you can probably unravel the mystery), Spettro and Trent have busted forth with two totally powerful and effective after hours jams. First off, there’s “Side by Side,” rich in color, mood, and space, moving from dark to light. It’s got all the best elements of deep tech-house with a tribal underbelly. This is followed by “Bring It Back” which is part electro acid robot noise and part tribal hip-house. This is the dirty house sound of the South, ready to bump in the Jeep as well as the club. On the remix tip newcomer Ian Bortolotti, a staple of the mid-west DJ scene and part of the DingBat family, unveils a version of “Bring It Back” that captures the sound of the newborn offspring of a Korg M1 and a TB–303. This mix has a totally different vibe from the original and is something for seedy basement clubs and dark warehouse parties where people like to do bad things. DingBat approved!

Johnny Fiasco - “Slammin’!”
Leigh Morgan (Urban Torque) - “‘Side by Side’ is a quirky little thing. I dig and will play.”
Tyler Stadius - “‘Side By Side’ … always loved that Aphrohead beat!”
Tensnake - “‘Side By Side’ is quite nice!”
Louk (Compulzion / Druck) - “That ‘Bring It Back’ remix is definitely my favorite … Korg M1, 303 vibes, and lovely choir chords a-plenty! Yes, mate!”
Sumsuch (Colour and Pitch) - “Really loving Spettro and Trent Johnson’s recent output and this is no exception. ‘Side By Side’ is huge! I’m really liking the Ian Bortolotti acid remix, too … can’t wait to play these!”
Manuel Sahagun - “Loving it!”
MIke Clark / Agent X (Strictly Beatdown) - “Nice and groovy … I love the energy in ‘Side By Side.’”
Joey Silvero (Distant People) - “This is a funky sound that’ll make you move.”
Al Bradley (3am Recordings) - “Cool vibes right across the release here. I’m feeling the stabby ‘Side By Side’ and Ian’s acid tinged remix of ‘Bring It Back,’ but the original ‘Bring It Back’ is the pick for me - quality freaky beats!”
Bogdan Taran (Dance Box Radio Show) - “This reminds a bit of the Spirit Catcher sound … very nice EP.”
Still Rob G (Smoke N Mirrors / Om Records) - “‘Side by Side’ is nice, but I really dig the more eccentric ‘Bring it Back.’ Ian did a nice job combining the acid and garage genres on the remix.”

Available now from Juno Download and Beatport.