The enjoyment surrounding Leon Vynehall’s recent growth into one of today’s more prominent figures in house is no coincidence. In just two years he has delivered some of the most chiselled and vivid house records that commands nothing but respect.
Less than 4 months after his debut album ‘Music For the Uninvited’ on Martyn’s 3024 imprint, Vynehall returns with a monster two track EP on Clone’s offshoot Royal Oak. Relentless, most definitely.
‘Butterflies‘ is the kind of track that strikes a chord immediately as it still does well over the hundredth listen. The inventory of elements and modulations Vynehall puts on display seems infinite. With its obsessive piano chords raining down and percussions gently thrumming along a march of stomping kicks and blurred claps, ‘Butterflies’ is as catchy as it’s deepening with every listen. The vocals add a playful, yet welcome smoothness to the track and Vynehall lets the vocals fade out through the instrumental when needed, allowing him to focus on the groove.
‘This is the Place’ follows on from somewhere between Moodymann’s funk-indebted ‘I’m Doing Fine’ and Lone’s ‘Restless City’. Vynehall looks back to Chicago 4/4 classics with a stop-over in a more instrumental hip-hop, jazz-tinged sound. It certainly does more than keep the record afloat, adding depth to his well-known house weaponry and giving a new approach to his music as a whole.
The English producer once again unrolls his skills with the ease of a kid and groove science of a veteran. Both surprising and masterfully crafted, contemplative and inviting. Butterflies marks a new step in Vynehall’s direction to house music’s hall of fame. Is this one of the essential house tracks of the year? Without a doubt.