Andy Vaz: Bicycle Love
Yore Records

Ralph Hutter isn't the only electronic producer who loves cycling. It's a passion of Andy Vaz's, too, so much so that he's titled his latest Yore release, a three-tracker featuring Vaz's “Bicycle Love” original and two versions, in homage to it. A slinky hi-hat figure does, in fact, give the original a bicycle-like quality, but the tune's otherwise an ultra-smooth deep house jam whose carefree spirit Vaz bolsters with creamy Rhodes chords, congas, and samples of a soulful Robert Owens-styled singer. The cut oozes warmth and uplift, so much so that one can't help but visualize while listening to it a cyclist breezing through the countryside on a warm summer day.

Damon Lamar, who co-runs with Specter the Chicago deep house music label Tetrode, contributes a remix whose slink grooves as insistently as Vaz's though does so with a kind of panther-like stealth that emphasizes its US connection. In augmenting the tune with a generous smattering of twilight synths, Lamar recasts the cut as a night-time ride through the city streets. The release is rounded out by a languorous “Real Keys Mix” that's as tasty as the others if a tad funkier (and jazzier) due to a tiny hiccup that subtly arrests the groove and a thudding bass pulse that kicks in halfway through. Collectors also might be interested to know that each of the twelve-inch release's 250 copies is housed within a unique, handmade sleeve that Vaz has adorned with a red-painted bicycle wheel pattern (see above) and that the vinyl itself is a combination of red and transparent crystal to match the cover. 

July 2013