Austrian Ken Hayakawa keeps up Stripped Down Records’ fine run of form with two new tracks that get remixed by John Tejada and Whitesquare. Superbly soothing opener ‘Sonic Wave’ is a brilliantly warm and spaced out deep house track that voyages into the cosmos. American tech house titan and long-time Kompakt associate John Tejada steps up to remix and takes things even deeper, with pulsing, sonar-like acid blips and icy hi hats all working on melting your mind as warm, gurgling bass drives things forwards. It is Italian producer and DFTD, 2020 Vision and Freerange house master Whitesquare who then remixes. He brings plenty of spine-tingling chords to his version, which is deep yet driven, with layer upon layer of rich sound all oozing real soul. Hayakawa then finishes things off in style with ‘Lost,’ a brilliantly atmospheric track that is cavernous, dubbed out and finished with exquisite ambient details that cannot help but calm you. This is a beautiful EP of deep, dynamic house music.
Claudio Ricci returns to his own label with a fresh new single that comes with superb remixes from Uner, Brigado Crew and Makossa & Megablast. Ricci is a veteran of the scene who was born in Vienna but is based in Ibiza. He has a weekly radio show on Ibiza Global Radio and takes cues from all styles of house music. He mixes organic sounds with proper melodies to enthralling effect and after EPs on the likes of MoBlack, Compost and Sudam, serves up his best work on his own ever more vital label. His original here is ‘Yano’, a perfectly paced track with loose, jumbled percussion. Dark, broad and sweeping chords bring tension and menace to the grooves, but a soulful vocal cry off in the distance means it also has real heart. A tribal track that is designed to unite the floor, it’s a perfect later summer anthem in the making. This excellent EP offers various house styles that will connect with a wide range of audiences.
Stripped Down Records continues with munimuni & Seelenwald and featuring stellar remixes from label founder Claudio Ricci as well as Sasse, Tiefschwarz and Kollektiv Turmstrasse. The excellent original is ‘Missing Link’, a strikingly emotional track with slow, lurching drums and a menacing bassline. These are five fantastically expressive and emotive tracks that bring a whole new world of feelings to the dance floor.
With new track ‘Warschauer Strasse’, Claudio Ricci has created an expansive seven minute workout of twisted synths and deep house drums. The first remix comes from long time techno heavyweight Timo Maas and the prolific and inventive Basti Grub. Their singular remix speeds up the original and layers in fluttering toms and percussive sounds as well as broad, groaning synths and the distant sound of a bustling city at rush hour. Sudam label boss and Ibiza based artist Kintar flips the track into something spacious and haunting. Eerie keys and sweeping synths keep you on edge as the rubbery techno groove rolls on into the night. Bulgarian based Metodi Hristov loves to experiment and has a distinctive techno style that gains support from the likes of Richie Hawtin, Carl Cox and Adam Beyer. In his hands the track becomes a peak time tech banger!