Sunday, 16 September 2012


(Giving a warning that this POST is all about House Music,
as this is not at all a specialised house, dance or music blog.
And I don't want to alienate anyone just dropping by to read otherwise.
!While you could give it a go! :)  )

There has been & is good stuff around at the moment, so time for some stuffing of stuff onto blog.

I should do a couple or more of HOUSE! posts per week, and at least one anyway.

3 HOUSE TRACKS in this post today (or tonight, rather, it's late and I've been ill unfortunately).

(1) One track I've only heard a few times and clearly already, to me, is a classic of early this year ("Wayne County", Omar S remix, by Omar S).
(2) One track has been around for a few months (though I heard it around 5 months ago first), has been popular, is getting very popular, or already is, and is still growing, house of the moment
("Preset" by Crooked Man).
(3) One track I regard as a classic from last year which reminds me of Old School early house days (the Screendeath remix of "Song For Lisa" by The Japanese Popstars).

(1) "Wayne County" or "Wayne County Hill Cop's (Part 2)", Omar S, Omar S Remix. Early 2012.

An excellent track, find yourself suddenly in the middle of Detroit, listening to classic Detroit Techno from the mid to late 80s. Wayne County is an area in Detroit.

A sample of the vinyl, the analogue sample rather than digital, had me feeling like it was 1988 again. Or even '86, I'm not sure and I was young though living on house with every chance. Not young enough to miss ALL the clubs! :) If you ask, I don't really remember.

The Omar S remix is featured on the release with the original mix (available to buy from the links below). The original mix is more classic house, and IS so classic, and I love it and probably prefer it, but I share the Omar S mix here anyway, as it's what I'm listening to. It was a shorter version that got me sharing this, some time after I'd heard it a few times before (though I've not been out much anywhere this summer past, or Spring for that matter). That shorter version, mix, or a radio cut / edit, that has me sharing this, was played by Seth Troxler and Jamie Jones on their Essential Selection show on Radio 1 (BBC, UK) this summer. Certainly a best classic of 2012. That much was sheerly obvious right at the start of the year.

Follow these links for more info and to buy the music:

(2) "Preset", Crooked Man. (From "Preset" / "Scum" E.P. on Crooked House label.)

"Preset", Crooked Man - promotional from radio mix Ben Watt (BBC 6 Mix, UK) by lcb

Good luck finding the track to purchase, online stores still say it is sold out (mid September 2012) for both MP3 and vinyl. It's a brilliant house track, sounds like a classic or anthem to me, so is worth looking around for. It was released in April this year, as far as I know. Yet I checked a few times in the last 4 months or so and the online stores said sold out. Maybe it was released for a week or something, just for DJs, or something, a digital equivalent of a white label, or something, or something.

Mysterious - I don't know anything about this track by Crooked Man, who've published on their own label, also called Crooked Man, it seems. They've been around for a while and I think are lead by an old shool DJ from the north of England, from a club I think I must have poked my head into when I were a little teen. Or something. While those are serious house - jazz vocalists on that recording, sounding like a soul groove house classic within a very few listens. It's not just a man in a studio with electronics. While said man really does have the most amazing, incredible digital percussion production facilities - it's beyond most serious balearic stuff, while also a bit minimal acid and more mainstream Chicago at the same time. I can't tell if it's real percussion bars sampled and looped, or all created from some amazing digital boxes. (Some sources online refer to the label as Crooked House.) And the record seems to have been unavailable for some time. Would love more information.

*** Added in a post edit, 17.09.2012: Here's some information now, including vocalists names found on the vinyl record itself: Info - Crooked House

(3) "Song For Lisa", The Japanese Popstars, Screendeath Remix.

The Screendeath remix is classic house from 2011. It brings me back to a time of classic after classic, week after week, weeks full of classics, from the mid to late 80s through the around the mid 90s or so. Things aren't really like that anymore.

Screendeath is a Northern Irish DJ and producer, still based in Belfast, I think, who I've seen some at local house clubs in the city. Really cool. After hearing his "Song for Lisa" remix and being amazed and falling in love with it (some time after I'd thought "Song for Lisa", JP's, was kinda shelved in current club stuff), I saw him do a set and I wasn't disappointed. Brilliant. I think he was one of the names before Ben Klock's visit to The Stiff Kitten club last year (or Steffi from Panorama - Berghain). (Ben Klock back next week at SK.)

The Japanese Popstars are also musicians from this region, DJs and producers, still based in Derry I think. They had a remix featured in "Tron Legacy Reconfigured" (2011), the remix album of Daft Punk's 2010 film soundtrack. (Added 13.10.2012: I forgot to mention they have a really good global name as a live dance act, particular in stadia and festival stages.) They were one of the names at the last time I went to Belfast's huge club SHINE. You might call ir a superclub but it always has been and is based in a perfectly nice, but typically basic (but for a nice back bar) students' union - it's not a student club though.

Unfortunately, I missed The Japansese Popstars completely that night, and nearly all of the headliner Alex Metric, as the DJs in the very back bar were playing great house all night and I couldn't move away. Anyway that's typical for me at Shine, where I went to see Paul Oakenfold last year, but spent most of the night enjoying an amazing set by Questhouse DJs in the first bar (Questhouse have their own club in Belfast, "Questhouse", formerly The Warehouse, Boucher Rd.) That was surprising as Questhouse are fast, trance, techno - not so much my thing, but the set was SO cool, amazing. And Oakie was not doing so well on that night (and the place was absolutely heaving). And the main hall speakers sounded really bad by the time he came on anyway. That's unusual for Shine, in recent times at least, for the times I've been, the sound is usually at least good.

I made it to check out the Questhouse club this summer, actually too tired to bother going anywhere after a few drinks in the bar downstairs, and feeling like a few more beers. The techno was so fast, not my scene, a nice venue though. Maybe it looked fun for those into that. Maybe, as a long time total house head, I thought they need real house music at a danceable tempo. Or a whole night of Ce Ce Roger's "Someday", repeatedly (OK all mixes that can be found, to root the place in something with roots.) This was a Friday night, and from what one of the promoters said, I got the feeling that Saturday should be more housey techno, or that week anyway. (Though checking out one of the DJs online, Moog I think, his stuff can be really fast.)

I remember I missed Paul Van Dyke at Shine the week afterwards, quality trance if you want. Illness can be really annoying at times. While for classic later - noughties trance house - rave, Eddie Halliwell is headlining Shine in a week or so from now. I don't know if I can do rave anymore. I think it died in me soon after a few visits to 'Rez' near Edinburgh in the late 90s. While earlier classics live on. There was a time when many types of mainstream house and even pop house and techno and rave were often kind of married in tracks (tracks like Sunscreem's "Love You More", Sunshine Valentine Mix or others, even the original). And even before that when tracks of each genre were all often - indeed probably mostly - kind of married in clubs, along with slower dance such as Soul II Soul and Movement 98. There were the genre clubs - a lot, just like today - house, garage, techno, rave etc. And there were many dance clubs which incorporated charty RnB (meaning swingbeat - swingbeat was OK or at least OKish at the start) and the dance clubs with all of that without the swingbeat (which I much preferred). That kind of thing is really hard to find now. It seems there are underground dance genre clubs, and a commercial play anything or most things nightclub / pop disco, that's that. With recent pop music, the latter aren't worth even directing your mind to. Common or garden discos used still to be nice fun. Once upon a time. Nowadays torture is the name of the "game" in popular music and the lives of those who are somehow attatched to it.

Returning to Shine and my missing huge names in the main hall, last year Sasha was a headliner, who of course I'd thought was a really cool DJ, since a mid teen at the beginning of the 90s,and he played a long set. Of which I heard one track early on and the end of his very last track at the end of the night. Because 808 State were playing in the first bar also that night, and it was an amazing set, with guest appearance by one of the biggest current names in house in Belfast, Space Dimension Controller (getting a big name in the wide world). He also played WITH 808 State. It was a highlight to see the amazing 808 Sate play along together with SDC, great sets and combination. I made a promise to myself to see Sasha again, somewhere, wherever.

But illness means nothing is sure. I usually don't buy tickets in advance. The last I bought in advance, for Kerry Chandler in Belfast (Stiff Kitten) I couldn't go to and lost. I even waited until the morning of the night, thinking, I can force myself to go tonight, I'm not too bad, but there's no predicting.

The Japanese Popstars are playing at the upcoming Shine birthday night in Belfast (is it 17 years old, now? While I always thought Shine went back to nights I sometimes went to at Belfast Art College in the 80s, when underage, house nights I thought people "called" Shine. Or maybe they were telling me to shine, dunno.) John Digweed is the headliner (really looking foward to this), and Julio Bashmore is playing. I saw one or two sets by Bashmore last year and I loved them. But his "Au Seve" is absolutely killing me, I hate it. It literally kills me. Dead. For weeks or longer, with just 1 minute or less of hearing it. Piece of mod retro crap.

There is also an excellent Pete Tong remix of The Japanese Popstars' classic, "Song For Lisa". The original anyway is a lovely electronica - maybe indie - house piece.

The Japanese Popstars - Song For Lisa (Screendeath Remix) by screendeath

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