Though some may not agree with this statement, house music’s currently living a quite exciting period. Of course, there will always be those for which some of the raw-sounding, unrefined accents of today’s dusty house excursions feel nothing but incomplete and barely fit for purpose. It is actually a quite common thing to read sweeping comments and patchy explanations on most of the interested forums about how this movement is just another hype phenomenon and its affiliated artists way overrated. But hey, guys, success doesn’t mean shallowness or brief durability.
Moodcut‘s Tame Cats, the new 12″ freshly put out by Berlin-based label Nous is the perfect excuse to explore the new considerations everyone should keep in mind when ‘evaluating’ or ‘criticizing’ (whatever is the most objective) say, “dusty house” material – for the sake of sticking an ugly label on it – being released these days. Since its beginnings, house music has always tunneled its way to the nearer dancefloor via narrow paths and fierce home-studio activism which, with the growing importance of the internet in our lives, has nothing but strongly increased the home-cooking method and kept relocating the epicentre of music nearer and nearer to its original source while significantly reducing the amount of go-betweens.
As one of the most recent additions to this long list of emerging house producers, Moodcut will most certainly not convince those who’ve already got a deep-seated perspective on the subject and well… let’s forget them. Nonetheless, Tame Cats represents everything one should love about this new wave of producers that keeps breaking from everywhere on the planet because that plate definitely encapsulates house music’s most essential soulfulness. And rather pleasantly, the guy got it packed into a few fast-moving, sun-soaked tunes, both spontaneous and finely crafted. Not harking back the old-fashioned motifs but well looking ahead.
Stuck in Socks is definitely the highlight of the release, putting on display its herd of bouncing bass lines with a delightful, acutely-sparkled dose of funk and subtlety when the piano notes shift to pads in a languid, hyper-sexy unfurling of housey curves. Both feelingly spot-on and straight killer on a Saturday night, one of this year’s finest house tunes. For its part, Late Night Ham is enrooting more deeply in lo-fi soil, developing a nice although perhaps a bit too blatantly repetitive leitmotiv with its locomotive-like groove that fortunately finds an interesting outlet and dusty echo in Moon B‘s rework. The Californian producer brings in the broken beat patterns for a successfully half-syncopated groove, half-spaced out synth ride that will have you caught from the first second to the last.
On the flipside, Space Dub and its hard-beating kicks and claps take you to the stratosphere in rather muscular style, opting for a much more tonic stepper session than the previous tunes. Less dub than Coni‘s version though, which leaves full space to a stretched-out and reverbed horn-like sample floating over tribal percussions in a hazy forest of sounds. An almost mystical, brilliantly hypnotic revamp by the well-settled French producer that proves if needed that the original, raw clay that could turn Moodcut into an essential is right here already but still needs some more modeling and experience. An exciting premise without the shadow of a doubt.
Tame Cats is out now on Nous, order a vinyl copy from Rush Hour.