Smooth Agent Records reaches out to Europe, and a decidedly European flavor, for a new single from Italian duo The Zars. Made up of Alex Tessarolo and pAd, The Zars’ music moves easily from techno-dub to house to disco but always executed with a deep touch. After previous releases on the likes of Progrezo, Till2012 Records, and Ampispazi Recordings, the pair grace Smooth Agent with the cool, nasty groove of “Some More Dope.” Over a popping mid-tempo four-on-the-floor the track is filled with layers of sound, including a rousing, dubbed out vocal part. This slinky affair builds, and is ready to create some spicy after hours action on the dance floor. “Some More Dope” gets the remix treatment from Glasgow’s acclaimed OOFT! (Foto Recordings, Midnight Marauders) who delivers a dark and slinky synth-led masterwork containing many subtle twists and turns. The cut also gets an evocative version from fellow Italian Luminodisco (Danny Was A Drag King, Hell Yeah) who treat the tune to their rollicking percussion, bouncing Italo bass lines, and rich, crystal clear production.
The Zars close out the EP with a couple of exceptional bonus originals, starting with the churning “Saxa Rubina.” With its echoed stabs, crisp rhythm, and rising energy the track feels like a trip on a midnight subway headed to parts unknown. This is followed by “Bagheera,” another mid-tempo house music stomper, this time characterized by a low, throbbing bass, exotic instrumentation, and curious exclamations of the track’s title. All in all, The Zars have offered a top notch package here ready to hit all the right notes in the adventurous house DJ’s more cosmic sets.
Peter Kruder (Kruder & Dorfmeister) - “I love the original track. Great, tripped out stuff. The OOFT! and Luminodisco remixes are cool, too. I’ll play this.”
Tensnake - “What a great pack. OOFT! and Luminodisco deliver some great remixes.”
Sunshine Jones (Dubtribe) - “Dope. I really like this release.”
Kraak & Smaak - “‘Saxa Rubra’ has a nice drive to it.”
Lars Behrenroth (Deeper Shades of House) - “The Luminodisco remix is KILLLLERRRR. ‘Saxa Rubra’ just oozes deepness, too. Dope release!”
Brett Johnson - “Nice cosmic funk!”
Q-Burns Abstract Message - “Solid package all around, but it’s the Luminodisco mix that’s got me psyched the most. Stellar stuff.”
Severino (Horse Meat Disco / Up Yours) - “Good stuff here … ‘Saxa Rubra’ (great name) is pumpin’!”
Sleazy McQueen - “More dope? Yeah!”
Ulysses (Neurotic Drum Band) - “The original is bananas and the remixes are all top notch. Will play for sure!”
Ant Plate (Rhythm Plate / YSE) - “I’m liking the heavy beat and loopy, bouncy vibes of the originals.”
Sumsuch (Colour and Pitch) - “Wowzers … the OOFT! Remix is off the chain! I’m feeling ‘Saxa Rubra,’ too. Dope!”
Craig Stewart (DCSTrax / Montana & Stewart) - “The OOFT! Luminodisco jams are very hot. Nice work.”
Deadbeat Disco Radio Show - “Deepness par excellence! OOFT! and Luminodisco both conjure up sultry grooves, however we’re down most with the super-deep ‘Saxa Rubra’ and ‘Bagheera.’ Loving that break on ‘Bagheera’ … a wicked dance floor surprise!”