Reed & Radley – Bongo Lover (Grass Green Recordings)

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From Manhattan to Manchester, from Brooklyn to Bradford. With love.
For some mad reason, garage, the dominant sound in a buzzy New York/New Jersey scene, found a willing underground audience in northern England in the early 90s.

 

Clubs like the Hacienda and Hard Times embraced garage gurus like Todd Terry and Tony Humphries like they were their own.
Reed & Radley were among that audience, spending lost nights on the dancefloor then buying shrink-wrapped gems on labels like Strictly Rhythm and Easy Street.

 

Now living in New Zealand, this EP is their tribute to the New York/New Jersey garage sounds of the early and mid 90s.
Filtered through the styles and scenes that followed it’s both of a time and bang now.

 

Built around smooth pads and an ever-morphing rubbery synth riff, Keep On is kicked along by skipping snares and hopping hats. That riff’s kept in check initially before some jiggery-pokery with the filter sets it free, sending fizzing, twisted stabs whizzing through the mix. There’s a hint of Wild Pitch about the reversed stabs, rides and vocal refrain but the main riff and panned toms bring things right up to date.
Don’t Let Me Down

 

Even the most underground dancefloors need a piano anthem now and again. Here’s one. Bright, simple chords are underpinned by a bouncing bass, hypnotic Korg organ motif and cut-up vocal line. If that’s the ‘then’, the ‘now’ comes from pitched-down stabs direct from a Detroit basement. And it’s all wrapped in a string so warm and enveloping it should be used to advertise Horlick’s.
Keep On (Shallow Taxi Club hard dub)

 

More like Taxi Driver than Taxi Club. This is an uncompromising and aggressive take from the self-pronounced producer-not-DJ. It’s verging on Mr G-style techno but retains enough swing and bounce to appeal to peak-time, bigger room garage floors.

 

Buy digital release…

 

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