Claudia Cazacu – Lies

Claudia Cazacu - Lies

Claudia Cazacu has been well-known in the world of trance for years. But she recently showed the darker side to her tastes with her 2015 remix of Frank De Wulf’s “The Tape.” Since then, she has released many techno tunes, mostly through her own Haute label and Andrea Frisina’s Gate Null Recordings. Every one of these tracks demonstrates Cazacu’s unique sound, and in particular, her love for dark and driving beats. “Lies” is her third single for Gate Null, and it is no different.

The track is a massive club-ready tune with her typical dark and driving bassline, this time coupled with a powerful synth hook and beautiful vocal pad. The percussion is expertly arranged to create a sense of hypnotic flow and takes the listener’s mind on a journey.

“Lies” is out now on Gate Null Recordings.

Follow Claudia Cazacu: SoundCloud / Facebook
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The Reactivitz & GNTN – Gravity

GNTN & The Reactivitz - Gravity

French producer The Reactivitz has found his way back to Respekt again, but this time for a full EP in collaboration with a name that recently got on my radar, the duo GNTN. These German producers released their first track mid-2015 and have been featured on labels like Familia and Selected, but are now taking the next step to take over the world by storm. In this joint effort they’ve created an attractive sound that comes in the form of the “Gravity” EP, featuring two originals and two remixes, courtesy of Drumcomplex and Giorgio Rusconi.

“Gravity” is an introspective track that presents a mixture of rough bass sequences and light, celestial pads. Adding to these elements is an arpeggiated synth that acts as the driving factor in this track. Even though the composiotion lacks a main melody, the pads are quite engaging and mix well and interchange often with the other melodic parts of the track.

Giorgio Rusconi’s remix of “Gravity” lacks a bit in the low end, but the Italian producer makes up for that with the calmness he’s created by removing the acute snares and the rough basses from the original. This makes the role of the pads more prominent and gives the track a bit more breathing room. The catchy, tumbling percussion, starting at the four minute mark, also helps in that regard and is simply icing on the cake.

“Think Different” is a bit more static and opens with straightforward percussion in the unmistakable style of The Reactivitz. The main theme of the track is a rigid chord sequence (with slight variations) that has the potential to escalate into something bigger, but mostly simmers for the duration of the track. Airy atmospherics and occasional vocal spurs bring some more ambiance to the composition, but they also can’t live up to the “different thinking” that’s being suggested by the title.

German duo Dumcomplex delivers a very modest remix of “Think Different” that doesn’t stray very far from the path of the original. Apart from some softer touches and the use of ill-placed and slightly clashing sound effects, there is not much of their involvement to find here. I hate to say it, but it sounds like this remix was made in a hurry and I don’t understand why it was even included on this EP…

The “Gravity” EP is out now on Respekt Recordings.

Follow GNTN: SoundCloud / Facebook
Follow The Reactivitz: SoundCloud / Facebook
Follow Drumcomplex: SoundCloud / Facebook
Follow Giorgio Rusconi: SoundCloud / Facebook
Follow Respekt Recordings: SoundCloud / Facebook

Alan Fitzpatrick – You Got Me

Alan Fitzpatrick - You Got Me

Techno heavyweight Alan Fitzpatrick brings with “You Got Me” his third installment on his own We Are The Brave platform. Besides being a label, We Are The Brave also serves as an event project, which has already led the British producer on a remarkable tour around the UK, where he performed in the houses of fans. If that hadn’t garnered enough attention already, this release will certainly do the trick. With a brand-new track from Alan and a remix from producer duo Slam on the flipside, this EP is guaranteed to end up high in the charts.

The first two minutes of “You Got Me” showcase dynamic percussion layers and a wobbly bassline, which are then quickly interrupted by the ecstatic vocal chants from Emmanuel Top’s “Play It Loud”. From this moment on, the track kicks into high gear, but except from a short melodic break at the three minute mark, the track doesn’t bring much variation to the table. Despite its carefree energy and use of vocals that are full of life, the track falls a bit short of really intriguing the listener.

Slam brings their own flavour to this release with a stripped back version of “You Got Me”. In all honesty, they’ve stripped it to the bone, because except for the memorable vocal chants, there’s nothing in it that links it to Alan’s original. In true Slam-fashion, the Scottish producers have fused the vocals together with a massive kick and an addictive, visceral lead. The arrangement is simple and the range of elements is limited, but I’d still say that this dancefloor stormer is highly effective.

Alan Fitzpatrick’s “You Got Me” EP is out now on We Are The Brave.

Follow Alan Fitzpatrick: SoundCloud / Facebook
Follow Slam: SoundCloud / Facebook
Follow We Are The Brave: SoundCloud / Facebook

Gary Burrows – All Your Dreams

Gary Burrows - All Your Dreams

It was at the end of last year that Gary Burrows made an impressive debut with two tracks (“You & Me” and “Why Can’t We See?”) on the “Prospekt EP01” compilation. Around that time, Spektre was already hammering “All Your Dreams” in their livesets and podcasts, which was destined to be released on their label as well. It was a bit of a wait, but now the highly anticipated track finally sees the light of day. It comes with a remix by Ukrainian producer Yan Oxygen and an additional track by the British producer as well. I’m very excited to share this release and I hope you’ll like it just as much!

Opening track “All Your Dreams” is a thundering track that’s firing on all cylinders. Gary uses a combination of oldskool vocal samples and a chilling arpeggio that’s been made out of the hardest of materials. The underlying, distorted bass, which materializes and vanishes at certain intervals, adds to the rave portion of the track and cements it all together. In just five minutes, this high energy festival track will manage to lift your spirits and get your heart pounding at a rapid pace.

Yan Oxygen brings the listener into deeper territories with his remix of the title track. While the changes made to “All Your Dreams” aren’t revolutionary, the softer percussion, the slowed down main riff and the additional pads definitely bring a certain calmness to the track. In the process, the track has also lost some of its momentum, which is a bit unfortunate. This could’ve been avoided by a less drastic BPM change.

Final track “Koda” shows a completely different side of the British producer. Even to the point that I wonder if I’m actually listening to a new Shelley Johannson production. This isn’t a bad thing, of course, for this deep track with its ominous vocals definitely speaks to the senses. The percussion is soft, yet still energetic and provides something for everyone on the dancefloor.

“All Your Dreams” is out now on Respekt Recordings.

Follow Gary Burrows: SoundCloud / Facebook
Follow Yan Oxygen: SoundCloud / Facebook
Follow Respekt Recordings: SoundCloud / Facebook

Raffaele Rizzi – Secret Combination

Raffaele Rizzi - Secret Combination

After debuting on “The Blokk Vol. 2” last year, Italian producer Raffaele Rizzi returns to Unrilis for the release of his first EP on the label. On this EP, which features two original tracks plus a remix of the title track by German duo Drumcomplex, Rizzi returns to his usual style, which is a bit of a surprise after the release of his “Hybrid / Under The Lights” EP from a few months ago. Even though this release isn’t as refreshing as his Tronic EP, “Secret Combination” is still a solid effort and definitely worth checking out.

Title track “Secret Combination” opens with a hard hitting kick and a somewhat restless melody that slowly fades in. This combination results in a calm, but also driven effort that has some hypnotic tendencies. While the arrangement is fairly straightforward and doesn’t contain many twists or turns, the journey is still intriguing and definitely keeps you going.

Even though the Drumcomplex remix of “Secret Combination” does not stand in stark contrast to the original, the German duo has certainly made some positive changes to it. Aside from bringing in additional percussion layers and rearranging the main riff to make the track more dynamic, they’ve also supplemented an extra synth, which brings some more depth to the track. Thankfully, its use is subtle enough to not draw too much attention away from the main melody.

Final track “Total Black” is not so melodic. The first three minutes consist of soft percussion, airy atmospherics and irregular synth bursts and vocal loops. Except from the melodic break at the three minute mark, the track doesn’t deviate from its course, which results in a bit predictable, but certainly not a lifeless effort.

Raffaele Rizzi’s “Secret Combination” EP will be out today on Unrilis.

Follow Raffaele Rizzi: SoundCloud / Facebook
Follow Drumcomplex: SoundCloud / Facebook
Follow Unrilis: SoundCloud / Facebook

Paride Saraceni – Memento EP

Paride Saraceni - Memento EP

UK-based producer Paride Saraceni returns to Dema’s Redrum label with a new two tracker firmly rooted in his house-influenced techno style, while diverging in two entirely different directions.

The first tune and title track, “Memento,” is built on a thick and bouncing groove, using a vocal hook and short, powerful stabs as it builds. Part way through the track introduces an interlude of a synth pattern, which is a bit reminiscent of guitar harmonics and leads into the main break. This track is pure dancefloor energy, and while it retains a recognizable Saraceni sound, its beauty is in the unique and immediately notable rhythm.

Track 2, “Never Feels Right,” is a bit reminiscent of the artist’s previous releases for Truesoul, and as such it had some early support from Adam Beyer on his Drumcode Live radioshow. The groove and percussion in this one is far more subtle, and the tune is mostly driven by the resonant, thick and flowing pads, backed by a vocal singing the title phrase in a wistful voice.

Paride Saraceni’s “Memento EP” will be released on April 17th on Redrum Music.

Follow Paride Saraceni: SoundCloud / Facebook
Follow Redrum Music: SoundCloud / Facebook

Vinicius Honorio – Through The Darkness

Vinicius Honorio - Through The Darkness

If you’ve been following Adam Beyer and listened to one of his Drumcode Radio Live episodes recently, then you’ve most definitely heard of Vinicius Honorio. The London based producer has a proven track record with releases on labels such as Funk’n Deep, Renesanz, Unity and Elevate, which is only the start of more great things to come. With his first Drumcode release in the pipeline (that’s scheduled for release next week), he even got a DCR172 tattoo, which speaks volumes about his passion and dedication to the music. The four-track EP he’s releasing, conveys just as much emotion, but leans more towards the melancholic side. All in all, a worthy Drumcode debut!

The EP opens with “Walking Shadow”, which quickly sets the tone with moody pads and howling synths. This is offset by drum’n’bass inspired percussion and rough bass grooves that make their way into the mix at the 2:30 mark. Both sections complement each other nicely and make that the melancholic portion doesn’t overshadow the solid, danceable backbone of the track.

Second track “Through The Darkness” starts out with a light percussion repertoire that gently leads the unsuspecting listener into a much darker place. Honorio has used a mixture of haunting arpeggios, ominous basses and lamenting vocals to turn this track into a dark, brooding expedition. While the arrangement is fairly straightforward, it carries just the right balance of anticipation and intensity to be mesmerizing throughout.

“Desolate” is a lighter affair, but it does express stronger sentiments of sorrow. These are conveyed through a dreary synth loop and mournful vocals, which have been used more sparingly. Driving percussion and subtle atmospherics provide an industrial setting, which gives the track quite a desolate feeling. This won’t make it the ideal candidate for your average spring-themed set, but it’s still a solid production nonetheless.

Final track “Out For Blood” stands out most on this EP, mainly for its use of industrial hits and stabs that instantly reminded me of the prevalent style of techno from five years ago. The arrangement alternates between the desolate synths, which provide a modern touch and the mechanical sounds, which are the definitely the tastemaker in this track. This hard hitting track is meant to be played loud and will instantly turn your party (or even your late night study session) into a massive, industrial rave.

“Through The Darkness” will be out on April 10th on Drumcode.

Follow Vinicius Honorio: SoundCloud / Facebook
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