With the ’90s house revival, underground classics are popping up again for a new generation to treasure. The Fathers of Sound mix of Pacha’s “One Kiss” is a true classic, with a full-on deep bass and groove workout for six minutes before the vocals of Debbie French/Majuri come in to heat it up even further. A longtime Vasquez staple and still being played around the world by DJs in the know, this new mix by Federico Scavo keeps the original vibe firmly intact and adds a sprinkling of modern flavor (and a bit of Federico’s trademark bouncy groove). Also included in the package is the Classic mix by Fulvio Perniola (half of Fathers of Sound with Gianni Bini), which is a long-awaited digital version of the vinyl classic. While the length is different (the original is 10:19 and the new one is 11:17), even the most devoted house heads would be hard pressed to hear the difference.
Where are the girls that can sang? With this big EDM revolution we are experiencing, the focus is on producers and DJs – definitely not the singers. While there are a few voices that regularly end up on the best dance records (Jes, Nadia Ali) where are diva vocalists at? Aside from Kimberley Locke “Feel the Love,” Deborah Cox “Leave the World Behind,” and Frenchie Davis “Love’s Got a Hold on Me,” there haven’t been big female vocal club records lately. Welcome to the stage, miss Brittany Campbell. Already buzzing in the NYC scene, the singer/songwriter has been called “Brooklyn’s pop princess.” While her songs vary in styles (pop, tropical, go-go, R&B) “House of Glass” is a stadium house record with tribal undertones that features, get this, a full-on song with verses and a chorus. What a concept! Brittany has an amazing voice and great control, so at no point does she oversing, but instead captures the emotional effects of a complicated one night stand. As a longtime producer for Junior Vasquez, Gomi’s influence is apparent – “House of Glass” is what a Vivian Green or Tamia remix would sound like in 2013. With a great music video and some incredible live performance clips online, I have a feeling we will be hearing a lot more from Brittany Campbell in the future.
Sometimes looking forward is looking back. Part of the appeal of classic house music was the underground and raw, unpolished feel that was captured in the original productions of the genre. Close your eyes when you are listening to “Heartlight,” and it could easily be a lost David Morales or Junior Vasquez track. Coming from the underground UK garage scene, producer TS7 stays true to his roots and adds just a touch of pop polish. Taylor’s voice is perfectly sweet, barely-processed so that it evokes the emotion of a freestyle singer – raw and real, with minimal effects for background depth. Put together, there is a beauty in the simplicity, if not the magic, of a classic house anthem. If Back to Basics is looking for a theme song for a true house night, “Heartlight” would fit the bill perfectly.