|Release date is in November 2013|
Led by luminaries like Rick Wilhite and Marcellus Pittman, the compilation “In The Dark: The Soul Of Detroit”, paradoxically released on a label from Chicago, was a high-resolution snapshot of Detroit’s deep house in 2005. After last year’s reissue of the album, the fall of 2013 sees the arrival of the next installment, again on Jerome Derradji’s Still Music. It comes as a triple vinyl and double CD, the latter containing a larger selection of tracks.
Considering Still Music’s preference for soulful and dynamic dance tracks, the CD1 is unsurprisingly filled with sizzling grooves and soluble pads, thus focusing on the deep house side of the Detroit produce.
Bright moods prevail in Craig Huckaby‘s jazzy “The Answer” and in mid-1980s Chicago house grooves by Alex Israel (“Bubble Wrap”, later “Cash Neutral”) while Reggie Dokes hails digital romanticism (“Cyber Love”) and Patrice Scott looks into the space (“Cosmic Rituals”). Nice picks are vocal-backed sexy body-mover “A Message For The DJ” by Delano Smith Feat. Diamondancer and Mike “Agent X” Clark‘s hypnotic proclamation “Free Your Mind” with velvety keys and rhythmic claps. More tender vibes come from Todd Modes, Patchworks and others. Jerome Derradji‘s intense acid mix of Tony Ollivierra‘s “Hemoglobin” rounds up the compilation’s first half.
On the second disc Pittman and Israel keep it deep for a while, but after the day comes the night in the presence of fortified Detroit sounds when Terrence Dixon opens futuristic explorations with “The Fall Guy Pt 1”, immediately matched by Keith Worthy‘s swirling pads’n’bass cut “Cyclops” with corrosive undercurrents. Compared to his early Motech material DJ 3000‘s “Faygo” is of different breed, a progression of synthetic horns and modulated leads, while UR and Los Hermanos textures come up in vocoded techno jazz “Strongholds” by Gerald Mitchell.
Alien force is met in Dixon‘s “The Fall Guy Pt 2”, unfortunately excluded from the LP version, a track built on dark and spiraling symphonic riffs interlaced with fluorescent pads. Deep house smoothness returns with the strings of new acquaintance Gabbamonkey (it’s not really about gabba as we know it) and after the original “Hemoglobin” by Ollivierra, DL Jones Meets Amp Fiddler open the door to R’n’B moods, followed by concluding house grooves by Delano Smith and Mitchell.
The overall atmosphere of the compilation is on the bright side, but darker shades are not missing either. Again, a tremendous job by the artists and Still Music.