Miami Picks

Jersey Maestros featuring Renee "He's so real" (Unsigned CD-R)

"He's so real" is a brand new production by the Jersey Maestros that yet has to be picked up by a label, but we are sure it is just a matter of time as it features a passionate vocal performance by Renee which gives the track an uplifting feeling, with the musical backdrop being smooth yet fierce, built around deeply thumpin' beats that are enriched with sweet percussion, warm melodic keys, jazzy horns and a lovely funky guitar riff, altogether taking you on a journey through soulful house at its best.

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Various "Waiting 2 Xhale EP" (Consortium Muzik Records CD Promo)

This lovely EP is kicked off by "U don't know" courtesy of songstress Carolyn Victorian, with Alan Smithee in BlueBlackness on production and mixing duties. "U don't know" is a laidback affair built a round a deep and mellow groove, with Carolyn Victorian providing a sensitive vocal that is accompanied by melodic keys. "Confusion" by Miss Yvonne gets the remix treatment by Jason B who reworks the track into a deeply groovin' yet smooth affair featuring lush chords and a great organ. Lastly there is "Love high" by Tmjaa featuring Monte Carlo Method, a summery track featuring sultry vocals over a deeply rumblin' beat that is enriched with spheric chords, bird chirping and sounds of the sea.

Various "WMC 2003 Promo" (MiCasa Records CD Promo)

Slammin' three track sampler by the Canada based MiCasa Records. "X-girlfriend" by Lester McLean is wonderful laidback production featuring a passionate r&b styled vocal performance alongside a jazzy sax and great keys and chords over a deep yet smoothly groovin' beat. Johan Greaves goes deep and laidback on the percussion enriched "Hold on" that features sweet'n'sexy male vocals together with wicked keys. "Take 2" by The Wisemen goes even deeper and keeps the vibe laidback, with some sultry male vocals being accompanied by warm chords and jazzy keys.

Various "The Boy Wonder Remixes - WMC 2008 Promo" (MiCasa Records CD Promo)

Here we've got a remix promo sampler of work done by Robin 'The Boy Wonder Eccleston (from the group The Wisemen). First he takes on two songs from Kayte Burgess' album "Checked baggage". Her ballad "Got what I want" gets a soulful yet stormin' makeover for the soulful house floors with a groovy beat and melodic keys, while the acoustic r&b song "Don't throw it away" gets reworked into an electrofied yet soulful deeply rumblin' house track. Fritz Helder's Red coat" is nothing for the fans of soulful house as this is on the harder side of things. Lastly there is the magnificent 'Deep Syncopated Mix' of Johan Greaves "Hold on" that is deep and hypnotic, with some deeply thumpin' beats leading the way for the vocals and keys.

Matt Hughes "WMC '08 Promo" (SoulDeep CD-R)

Matt Hughes is an up and coming producer from the UK who presented this wonderful sampler in Miami this year. "Evolving" is a deep and groovy track featuring melodic keys alongside side cool spoken word, altogether creating a captivating feel. His interpretation of Ledesi's "Good lovin'" (from the 2003 album "Soul singer") is a deep and soulful affair that keeps the jazz-funk flavors of the original alive, while Osunlade's deep and laidback "Moonlight" gets fired up while not letting down the soulful overall feeling. "Sessions C" features a wicked organ ride and jazzy keys over a deeply rumblin' groove, while "Hope over fear" is deep and jazzy featuring male spoken words on top. "Outside" is a powerful funked-up affair that sounds raw and rough, with "What a day" turning things back to deeper vibes with thumpin' beats, spoken words, jazzy flute and laminar chords. Lastly there is Matt Hughes take on "Brave bird" by Amel Larrieux which takes this beautiful laidback song (from her 2004 "Brave bird" album) to the soulful dance floors with a mellow house groove serving as playground for the original orchestration.

Various "Miami 2008 Sampler" (Thaisoul Records CD Promo)

It has been a year since we last heard from Jask's Thaisoul Records, but now they return in a big way with this hotter than hot three track sampler. First up is "The latin dream", a laidback Latin house track featuring sexy spoken words by Shirley Marte alongside a jazzy trumpet and lovely keys over a smoothly stormin' groove. Next is "Tears in the rain", a funkily groovin' production that features lovely melodies created by sweet chords and keys. The last track featured on this sampler is "Set me free" which features Kolai on flute and strings and Shirley Marte with another sexy spoken word performance over a deeply groovin' beat. The package includes various instrumental, beats and spokenapella versions for your mixing pleasure. The perfect soundtrack for the coming summer.

Dawn Tallmann "Try now" (Soul 45 Records CD Promo)

"Try now" features the unmistakable voice of Dawn Tallmann over a DJ Nermin produced musical backing that is smooth yet fierce, built around a percussion enriched funk soaking groove, with melodic keys, a jazzy piano and lovely guitar accompanying Dawn Tallmann's sensitive vocals. Patrick Bo takes the song to a deeper but still funky level with thumpin' beats leading the way for the vocals and synths. The alternate edit of Patrick Bo's mix is slightly deeper yet a tad less funky.

Various "Mark Mendoza Re-Edits & Mashups" (CD-R)

Seven re-edits and mashups can be found on this CD, with the afro house track "Afrik" by Kevin Reynolds featuring some hot vocal chants over a relentless beat. Next is "Slang shouter" that melts the new wave classic ""Slang teacher" by (Wide Boy Awake) with distinctive Depeche Mode sounds ("Shout"). "My sound joy" cleverly combines the Reese & Santonio classic "The sound" with the beats from Quentin Harris' smash hit "My joy". Then comes a lovely re-edit of DJ Oji's "Esteban", followed by the favorite of many DJ's: "Jesus creates sound" by Marlon D that is spiced with many great samples such as Ofra Haza or "Pump up the volume" to only name two. "Check out Mary" is all about Grand High Priest's "Mary don't weep" fused with Cevin Fisher's "Check this out". Lastly there is another mashup composed of "Rock to the beat" by Reese with "The sun can't compare" by Larry Heard (which is based on the ToT remix of later track).

Eric Levan "WMC 2008 Sampler" (Soul Elevation Music Records CD-R)

Here we have another truly hot sampler showcasing the creative work of DJ and producer Eric Levan. "Subway sound 2008" combines that notorious synth loop from the Sueno Latino classic with an old school beat, acidic tones and a wicked vocal sample. "2008 ADMX" gets deep and keeps things on an old-school tip, with excerpts from classic political speeches sampled over a relentless beat (sounds reminiscent to "Work it to the bone" by LNR to us) that is enriched with lovely synths. Last but not least we get "Work it '06" that shamelessly samples one of those resistless tribal grooves Masters at Work have invented in their career and spices it up with a hot "Work it" vocal sample.

Zone 7 Entertainment "WMC 2008 Sampler" (Zone 7 Entertainment Promo CD)

Zone 7 Entertainment (founded by their front man St. Lawrence back in 1988) present a wonderful sampler for an upcoming remix project to be released soon. "Early evening" by Internal Society (St. Lawarence used this artist name for his 2001 release on WestEnd Records) features Nu Soul Giants & Big U and can't deny the influences from the Jaydee classic "Plastic dreams" on the beat and drumz, with the cool spoken words and lush keys creating a deep and laidback yet mesmerizing feel on the 'Plas T-CatS Wind & Rain Remix'. The 'Jazz & Flow Mix' drops the vocals and beats for a mellow vibe perfect to chill, while the 'Plas-T CatS Edit' just drops the vocals and extends the track for a hypnotic dance floor experience. The second featured track is "Revisit the zone" by Internal Society in the 'Warrior Zone ReEdit' (we guess this is an updated version of their 2001 release "Feelin' the zone") being on a deep underground tip featuring wicked keys and chords over a smooth groove.

Various "WMC 2008 Deep and Funky Sampler" (Tarantic Records CD Promo)

It's great to see that Tarantic Records return to action with this slammin' sampler of forthcoming material to watch out for. Ivan I & Jason Howell present "Funky moves" featured here in three versions. Their 'Original Mix' is a deeply thumpin' funk soaking affair that is creating a captivating feel. The 'JasWho? Remix' intensifies the funky flavors and turns the track into a groovier direction, while Amit Shoham goes for a gritty attack on his take. "Name that drug" by Ben Tom & Amit Shoham in the 'Homero Espinosa & Allen Craig Remix' is a deep and slightly electronic affair with a mesmerizing feel created by catchy synths. Amit Shoham goes all deep and techy on his remix of Mandala's "Turborcharged", while Andy Sant's "Inbetween dreams" is on a deep and laidback tip with a lovely funky edge to it, featuring sexy female vocals on top.

Alex Finkin & Reverend P "WMC 2008 Sampler" (Animal House CD Promo)

French based Alex Finkin & Reverend P are going from strength to strength with their recent smash "Fight for love" and upcoming release on Planet La Funk titled "Lion in a cage" (see your Miami Reviews Part 1 for details). Beside those two productions, there is more fresh music from these two to be discovered on his sampler. "Can't get enough" features Jocelyn Mathieu with a passionate vocal over a funkily groovin' backdrop that is enriched with a beautiful piano, while on "Gone away" she sees herself accompanied by melodic chords, all nicely arranged over a deep'n'smooth groove. "War house" is a deep hypnotic track built around thumpin' beats and mesmerizing synths that is guaranteed to set the floor on fire. "The power" is an uplifting affair featuring a gospel vocal by Michelle Weeks over a stormin' groove that is enriched with a jazzy piano and phat organ. The dub gets deeper and adds some additional electrofied synths.

Various "WMC 2008 Sampler" (Bounce Muzik Records CD Promo)

This WMC sampler features the recently reviewed "Beautiful love" by Gabriel Horizon featuring DeShun as well as last years tracks "Lift me higher" by Tony Powell featuring Dejah and "Good vibes" by Gabriel Horizon & Jesse Powell. "Vibra azul" is a laidback Latin flavored track by Aaron Arce that features a lovely vibraphone together with classic strings and lovely keys over a smooth percussion enriched groove. "Da one" by Gabriel Horizon & DJ La Rok is a heavily stompin' funky house extravaganza with some clever effects and disco flavors used to create a frenzy on the dance floor. Lastly we've got "Muzik" by Gabriel Horizon, a fiercely stormin' disco-funk tinged track for those peak time moments.

Rocco "Da man" (Map Dance Records CD Promo)

With "Da man", Rocco presents a deep and moody track based around smoothly thumpin' beats that are enriched with wicked spoken words and some spaced-out synths and laminar chords that give the track an electronic feel. Claude Monnet is responsible for the remix, taking the track deeper and smoothing the vibe down a bit, with the chords and synths used creating a more melodic feel compared to the original.

Bangana featuring Clarisse Muvemba "Dead end" (HEYA Hifi CD Promo)

With "Dead end", Bangana and HEYA Hifi are guaranteed to continue their success with dance floor erupting releases as this deep and slightly techy release that features a sultry vocal performance by Clarisse Muvemba alongside mesmerizing synths and chords and infectious percussion over a smooth yet deeply stormin' groove creates an irresistible feeling. D'Julz contributes a remix that gives the track a more minimal yet more intense and hypnotizing vibe.

Filta Freqz "WMC 2008 Sampler" (CD-R)

Filta Freqz (Simon Cortez and Marco Manrique) have been a regular guests on Spirit of House for the last year or so thanks to the resistless funky house grooves they unleash with each and every of their tracks. At this years WMC, they presented a phat eleven track sampler that includes tracks we've already reviewed in the past as well as new material such as "Pressure" which uses the main vocal hook from the Sounds of Blackness classic "The pressure" over a deeply groovin'' funk soaking groove, or the deeply rumblin' "Soul heaven" oozes with lovely harmonies and the funk enriched groove. Simply put, each and every track on this sampler has got what it takes to rock the dance floors with the feel good funky and disco vibes.

Halo & Mascaro "Travel EP" (Proceed Records CD Promo)
Haldo "Miami 2008 Unreleased Tracks" (Proceed Records CD Promo)

As every year, our man Haldo drops some hot tunes right in time for Miami. Gladly his hard work from the past years paid off and his great music found home on various labels in recent months, but Haldo also continues to release on his own Proceed label as well. The "Travel EP" with partner Mascaro features four tracks, with "Together" being a lovely deep house track featuring wicked synths and chords, while the tribalish "Floor" goes electro on the keys, with a wicked organ added for your pleasure. "Miles away" is deep and groovy, with the funky ingredients creating an uplifting feel. Lastly there is the laidback "Save the last time" featuring wonderful jazzy piano and vibes together with great chords. Then there is the "Miami 2008 Unreleased Tracks" sampler kicking off with "See U in the sun", a laidback track featuring melodic chords alongside electrofide keys. Next is the deep "Be back" featuring a sweet vocal by Loryn alongside lovely keys and organ over a fierce yet smooth groove. "Come into my life" featuring Erika Scherlin on vocals is included in two versions: the 'Haldo Mix' is a melodic laidback affair, while the 'Deepred Mix' is a deeper take perfect for the bigger rooms. Lastly there is latinesque jazz-house track "I believe" that will bring a smile on every dancers face thanks to its uplifting vibe.

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