VA: Time Dilation
Soiree Records

Soiree Records never disappoints, and Time Dilation is no exception. Once again the Detroit-based label run by Derrick Thompson (aka Drivetrain) has given us a four-track EP that's experimental and innovative but never loses sight of the fundamental importance of groove. It takes about half a minute for his “This Toxic Tempest” to kick into gear but when it does, it does so with an acidy punch that's as alluring as it is syncopated. Plunging ever deeper into a hyper-charged realm of lush pads and pounding kick drums, the tune also works a relaxed spoken word turn by Goddess Stephanie into its electrified fold. Deep, too, is CloudMasterWeed's dizzying “LoVe,” which sprinkles an irrepressibly soulful female vocalist's musings across a tick-tock keyboard riff, massive bass pulse, and stoked house groove. In the raucous party jam “Fireside Warm-Up,” J Garcia has created a soulful thumper laced with claps so sharp surgery could be performed with them. Syncopation appears to be a recurring theme on the EP, with In2itive Motion (Jay Ramsey and Jennifer Xerri) also crafting a blend of jacking pulses and off-beat percussive accents in “Subliminal,” while also sweetening it with silken washes. With the EP's material flowing so smoothly, the producers responsible make it seem as if creating twenty-four classic minutes of soulful house music is the easiest and most natural thing in the world.

June 2012