Freshly arrived in our inbox a couple of days ago is the latest Dirt Crew summer wax offering. For their 90th release in a history that spans 11 busy years, the legendary german label invited over the hot-on-the-heels-of-love Russian rising star Ponty Mython. Known not only for his admiration of british culture (hence his chosen artist moniker), but also for his exemplary and diverse synth work, heavy cosmic disco roots, eclectic house jams and warm summery compositions, the Sankt Petersburg-based producer landed a fresh stream of releases on No More Hits, Eat More House, Tusk Wax, Arma and Beats Delivery in just under 3 years of hard work. His most recent release on Quintessentials saw him collaborating with our favourite Mexican producer Sebastien Vorhaus, and the result was simply put one of the freshest and most original Quintessentials EP of 2015 so far. So good the fruits of their collaboration tasted, that Ponty and Sebastien decided to keep it going and thus the subject of today's review was born.
'Mila, It's Not Over' is exactly what the groove doctor prescribed for the relentless summer heatwave we've been experiencing for the past month. To sooth your sleepless sweaty nights comes 'Face Down' which brings the boys' collaborative efforts into the spotlight. From the slick percussions and groovy bass-line to the steady kicks and bubbly stabs to the plethora of synth lines, strings, keys and pads and finishing up with an array of subtle vocals touches, and acid tingles, the opening track is one hot sexy beast that will keep you up all night with or without company :) 'Apple Arp' sees Alex working alone this time, bringing his love for analogue synths into play. The aptly titled track is centred around an overdriven melancholic arp melody around which acoustic drums and swinging percussion elements congregate. The arrangement is soon joined by a wistful low-fi synth madness, sorrowful vibrating pads and crying strings giving the entire track a heavy daydreaming feel.
Side B continues Alex's solo work with the title track of the EP and my personal favourite of the bunch. 'Mila, It's Not Over' has that jazzy touch we've come to love and appreciate in house music lately with it's smart use of electric piano, rhythmic acoustic elements, warm grooved-out bass-line and charming string bursts. All this is happening through a quirky arrangement with plenty of breakdowns and build-ups, excellent layering of ambience, field recordings and subtle fillers and just the right amount of reverb to tingle your every sense. To close up this magnificent collection of daydreamers and sleepwalkers is 'Narcolepsy', a hypnotic voyage through layers upon layers of trance-inducing flutes, ethereal choir pads and enthralling wind chimes. With your mind drifting into deep mystical soundscapes, your feet are kept firmly to the ground, pulsating to the old-skool drum-machine sound of tight kick-drums, playful snares, slapped claps and a deep driving bass-line.
From Russia with love... From Russia with love indeed!