VA: My Love For You Is Analogue

Though its dozen cuts are all remixes, My Love For You Is Analogue nevertheless provides a superb introduction to Somethinksounds' luscious house sound. Ostensibly designed to be an anniversary compilation celebrating the label's three years of operation, the collection functions as a convenient all-in-one document of the label's fine-tuned blend of electronic, garage, and house forms. For Somethinksounds founders Kazim Kazim Kazim and Andy Lemay, My Love For You Is Analogue is both a mini-recap and a recontextualisation of the label's sound. Based on the evidence at hand, Somethinksounds' vibrant house tracks are about much more than simply supple dance grooves. Yes, they're body-shakers, for sure, but the producers and remixers also repeatedly demonstrate a concern for fashioning harmonious compositions that develop through multiple stages. Contrasts of dynamics and mood are commonplace, and a given track's focus is as much on melody as it is rhythm.

There's no shortage of aural stimulation on offer, such as, for example, the beautifully snappy groove Artifact works into his brooding remix of EVM128's “Make Me Feel,” and the compilation is generally infused with a spirit of uplift and jubilation, as exemplified by Lokiboi's “Loves Saves the Day,” a crisp deep house dynamo whose funky swagger won't be denied, and EVM128's “Make Me Feel,” which is elevated (in its El-B remix) as much by a soaring lead vocal by BB. James as it is a boisterous funk pulse. A few well-timed melancholy cuts provide contrast to the compilation's generally sunny vibe. Though there's lots of sparkle to Lucky Paul's “Demonspawn,” there's a mournful quality to it as well, something especially audible in Guillermo Brown's soulful lead vocal (“I try to look away but I can't…”); an aura of sadness also pervades Baby Prince's “Nobody,” and there's an undeniably haunting quality about the Midland makeover of Lucky Paul's “Elephant Island,” too.

The Gang Colours remix of Lucky Paul's “Thought We Were Alone” (featuring Milosh) is deliciously soulful, and the level of craft exemplified by the material is oft-remarkable, with no better an example the Black Orange Juice remix of Bwana's “Baby Let Me Finish,” an iridescent, synth-goosed jam that memorably weds soulful lead vocalizing with the accelerated chirp of a female backup (“So you'll be all better, baby, once I'm finished…”) as it snakes its way through numerous head-spinning twists and turns. It's a typical example of material that rewards equally well on purely listening grounds as it does in a club context.

December 2013