The Jaydes: The Jaydes

While hardly a game-changer, The Jaydes self-titled collection certainly provides more than its share of of listening pleasures. The Berlin-based project is the brainchild of two friends and studio partners, Bloody Mary (Marjorie Migilaccio) and Attan (Sebastien Marseille), who deliberately crafted their debut album using vintage analog gear that by today's standards would be considered dated. As such, the material often sounds as if it's purposefully plundering the historical catalogues and styles of house and techno in a way that reflects their own histories as individuals growing up within the ‘80s and ‘90s scenes. The Jaydes came together when a temporary production alliance proved to be so satisfying that the duo decided to establish a more long-term creative partnership.

Though Migilaccio and Marseille account for most of the sounds on the nine-cut collection, they're not averse to bringing others into the fold, as guest shots by Mama, Hollis P. Monroe, and Overnite illustrate. “Tears & Fears” inaugurates the album promisingly with a late-night house jam that oozes a slightly decadent vibe in its underground moodpainting and Bloody Mary's whispered accents. The Jaydes' dancefloor material is strongest when it's at its most hell-raising, a case in point “Minor Change,” which receives a significant charge from its aggressive house chords, lacerating hi-hat patterns, ringing ride cymbals, and rolling groove. In like manner, the stoked swing of “Obsession” (featuring Monroe and Overnite) gets its boost from a drawling voiceover that's as creeped-out as it is ear-catching (“You might think that I'm obsessed / Not at all…”). As strong is “Race for Embrace,” which has got club anthem written all over it, especially when it features Mama's soulful vocal alongside the tune's body-moving slink.

In addition to those tracks, the album includes a number of techno-oriented cuts, including “Step On Light,” a hard-charging number powered by blindingly bright synth chords, as well as tripped-out, synth-heavy house jams (“Friday Ride,” “Temper Control”) and jittery acid-techno (“Area 89”). In the long run, Migilaccio and Marseille earn full marks for their enthusiasm and production skills, but perhaps lose a few in the originality department—not that any release that sounds like a quintessential Crosstown Rebels full-length is all that objectionable.

January 2014