Miami Highlight

Exclusive Preview: Vick Lavender "The Evolution" (Sophisticado Records CD Promo)

Vick Lavender is ready to launch his brand new label Sophisticado Records, with his artist album "The Evolution" to be released soon. Seven tracks from the album are on the exclusive promo copy we've got, with the wonderful jazz houser "Ancestors will dance" making the start, followed by the laidback disco-funk fused "Better baby". "Shujaa" is a on a midtempo tip, combining a smooth afro-tribal groove with jazz elements - something you would not necessarily expect but it is gorgeous, just give it a chance and let it grow on you. "Superwoman" is a beautiful blend of a deeply stormin' house groove with an orchestral jazz-funk instrumentation, while "Take me with you" features soulful vocals alongside jazzy keys over a percussion enriched groove. "The african spider" kicks of with a deep afro beat before a jazzy piano line, killer organ and sweet percussion come in. The final track "Sophisticado theme" smoothes things down for a  laidback, almost chill out feeling with its sweet jazz house vibes. A masterpiece not to be missed.

Miami Reviews Part 1

Hector Lavoe "Mi gente" (Louie Vega EOL Remix)(Fania/V2 Records 12" Promo)

Louie Vega reworks the Hector Lavoe classic "Mi gente" in a respectful way on a vibe reminiscent to the Elements of Life sound, keeping the original vibe and flavors alive while giving it a smooth reworking with Luisito Quintero providing additional instrumentation. A perfect example how a timeless classic can be reworked for the dancefloor.

Mustafa "Mustfa WMC 2007 Sampler" (Staff Productions CD-R)

Born and raised in France, Mustafa now lives in Brazil and got his debut artist album released in Japan recently. At this years WMC, he showcased a selection of upcoming remixes (to be released on various labels in the coming months). Each 12" release will feature reworkings from different producers and remixers, covering different musical genres. Both well known names (such as Groove Assassion, Dom Navarro, Anto Vitale and MJ Cole) as well as lesser known - in some cases even unknown names - (such as Leo Cuenca or Louis Subsole) will be involved in the project.

Various "Jamsteady Vol. 10" (Bootleg 12")

The Jamsteady series goes to round 10, bringing you JoJo Flores mash-up of "That night" with the legendary vocals of Sagat's "Fuk dat", Carlos Mena's 'Casamena Bassment Rub' of John Legend's "Save room" (which has already been hot since doing its round on CD-R), a Jesse Outlaw remix of the Diplomatics' disco classic "Your foolin' you" and a JoJo Flores edit of Yotam Avni's "Jay Dilla's dream".

Various "Grooveland Music 2007 WMC 2007 Sampler" (Grooveland Music Records CD Promo)

Right in time for the WMC, Grooveland Music extended their sampler with two additional tracks: a groovy reworking of KC Jackson's "All things praise" by Soul Basics on a jazzy laidback vibe, and the next single by Jarrier Modrow titled "Sunrise", a wonderful deep house with beautiful chords and warm melodies.

Gene King featuring Darnell Kendricks "Good love" (Philosophie Music Records 12" Test Pressing)

Philosophie Music are soon to drop another beauty with "Good love" by Gene King, a deep yet smooth production featuring a passionate vocal by Darnell Kendricks alongside melodic keys over a bouncy backing groove, with the keys and vocals giving the track a nice laidback feeling.

Diviniti "Can't explain" (Women on Wax Records CD Promo)

Not much needs to be explained here as "Can't explain" is a beautifully crafted production featuring a wonderful vocal performance by Diviniti over a deeply strormin' groove that is enriched with funky flavors and jazzy keys, with a beautiful orchestral breakdown adding that something extra to the track.

Various "Midem 2007 Music Sampler" (DeepHaven Music Records CD Promo)

What a musical treat for the ears this sampler is!! Showcasing the forthcoming releases on DeepHaven Music, this sampler offers a wonderful journey into soulful house music. Kicking off on a laidback and mellow tip with "Song & rhyme" by Albert Menendez, the marvellously produced and instrumentated "Be with you" by Carolyn Harding is next (watch out for hot remixes by DJ Man-X and Groove Assassin). Scott Wozniak presents the deep "Your unconscious mind" featuring spoken words by Drity Turk, while Arnold Jarvis' "Justified" gets a reworked by Blvd. East into a deeply groovin' affair with great keys. "All I want" sees Big Brooklyn Red return with an inspirational vocal, while KT Brooks scores big with the heartfelt "Love". A label to watch in the future.

Eric King "2getherness" (Whasdat Music Records CD Promo)

"2getherness" is a beautiful production written by the team of Pirahnahead, Diviniti & Eric King which features wonderful vocals alongside a great instrumentation that give the track a true organic feeling seldom found in house music. There is a beautiful 'Keyapella' that is all about the vocals, keys and guitar for the more sensuous moments.

Groove Assassin "Remixes & ReEdits March 2007" (CD-R)

Groove Assassin has become a household name in recent years for outstanding remixes and reedits that keep the flavors of the original alive while adding a distinct dancefloor vibe. This latest selection includes reworkings of Angela Johnson, Jill Scott, Donell Jones, Kelis, Peven Everett, Amp Fiddler, Jamiroquai and Jocelyn Brown whose "I love you" is nothing less than an exceptional piece of groovy'n'soulful house music (expect a full release soon).

One Touch featuring Colin Corvez "Its all on you" (CD-R)

The duo of Mirco Esposito & Roberto de Carlo returns with the uplifting "Its all on you" by Colin Corvez who sings his heart out on this beautifully instrumentated production that has a jazzy-funky orchestral touch to it. The dub mixes (included in vocal and instrumental takes) take the track to a deeper level, giving it a more sexy feeling.

Exclusive Preview: Marquito featuring Duane Harden "Face it now" (CD-R)

Marquito's "Face it now" is currently unsigned, but hopefully this will change soon as it is a beautiful production on a retro tip with a great arrangment and instrumentation alongside a wonderful vocal performance by Duane Harden. With its classy keys, strings, horns and the funktified backing groove, "Face it now" has all it takes to become an instant classic.

Rachel Claudio & Nicolas Vautier "Miscommunicate" (JaffaMusic Records CD Promo)

JaffaMusic is a brand new soulful house label by australian singer Rachel Claudio and french producer Nicolas Vautier. The first release on the label will be "Miscommunicate" featuring a sexy vocal performance over a deeply thumpin', funktified backing groove. Soul Harmonics smooth it down on their take, while Dom Navarra takes the track to a deeper edge. Finally rising star Yass delivers a slammin' remix with wicked keys and a killer organ solo.

Various "Miami 2007 Sampler" (Equal Records CD Promo)

Luis Radio has secured some quality releases for his Equal imprint, including the tribal house track "Snake shake" by Mr. Mama (reviewed previously here on Spirit of House). The release will include a new edit by Luis Radio as well as "Strangeness", a deep and moody track. "Don't keep me" by Sergio D'Angelo & Cucky vs Sharon May Linn is an uplifting production featuring a melodic instrumentation, with the 'Soulful Piano Mix' being a beautiful jazz take with a live feel to it. City Heads present "The farm" and "Tube game", two deep underground house tracks with a slight techy edge. "Now that I found you" by Dawn Tallmann is inclucded in the funikly groovin' Mark Stone vocal mix on a classic vibe with great keys, while the dub takes it to deeper grounds with a catchy piano and great strings riding on top of thumpin' beats.

Haldo  "Miami CD Sampler 2007" (Proceed Records CD Promo)

Every year Italian producer Haldo comes up with a sampler that features at least one bomb - and then last year he had "My brazil" on the Tony Records WMC sampler which became an instant classic (the track is back this year in a brand new and hot Maurice Joshua remix). This years sampler is no exception, featuring a nice selection of deep and soulful house productions, with Wendy Lewis supplying the vocals on "Never lose" and "I do". All tracks incorporate beautiful instrumentation and arrangement, making it hard to pick a favorite.

Various "Lazy Days WMC 2007 Promo" (Lazy Days Records CD Promo)

The label by Fred Everything (Frederic Blais) and Mike Fresco presents two new productions on their WMC sampler. First up is "Think of a place" by Marko Militano, a thumpin' deep house track with male vocals, sweet percussion and clever keys. The dub slightly electrofies things, while Fred Everything phattens the bat and adds wicked keys to it. Second is "On my mind" by Iz and Everything, a deeply rumblin' deep house track with wonderful laminar keys and female vocal that give it a laidback vibe. The dub takes it to even deeper grounds.

Deep Factor "Down on it" (Feelin' Music Records CD Promo)

After the wonderful "Warriors theme", Deep Factor present a worthy follow up with "Down on it" which is spreading classy old school flavors through its jazz-funk vibes which are inspired by the beloved (and unfortunately long time gone) disco/funk era. The music together with the vocals create an intense feeling reminiscent of the days when funky grooves dominated disco. The dub version puts the the four-to-the-floor beat centerstage while keeping the jazz-funk feeling alive.

Pattie LaBelle "Too many tears too many times" (Geoffrey C's Raw Mix)(CD-R)

We called him the 'mighty Geoffrey C' last time when we reviewed his reworking of Jaheim's "The chosen one" - and we did this rightly as his latest offering of Pattie LaBelle's "Too many tears, too many times" proves. The track is raw and moody, pure underground vibes with a deeply rumblin' bassline, dirty beats and wicked keys - just the way we like it.

Exclusive Preview: Jersey Maestros featuring Sara Dash "Something inside" (CD-R)

The Jersey Maestros team up with Sara Dash for the uplifting "Something inside", a classic New Jersey style garage production featuring melodic keys and a passionate vocal performance courtesy of Sara Dash that are beautifully arranged over a funktified groove.

Nermin featuring Ayaah "WMC 2007 Sampler" (Soul 45 Records CD Promo)

Soul 45 is a small label from Germany founded and run by Nermin which compiled a lovely three track sampler for the conference. All three tracks feature Ayaah on vocals who adds a sexy touch with ther sensual voice. "Truth (Club Mix)" is a stormin' deep house track with great spheric keys, while "Suddenly (Patrick Bo: Remix)" is built around a deeply rumblin' grooves and features melodic keys. Lastly there is the laidback "Won't let you" which oozes with jazz-funky flavors.

Various "WMC 07' Sampler" (Paradax Records CD Promo)

Miguel Plasencia returns with "The Journey Tracks" which includes "Music to my ears", a deep and laidback track featuring sexy spoken words by Alysa alongside wicked keys over a deeply stormin' beat. "Step into the club" features spoken words by Womina Wells and comes in three flavors. The main version features spacey keys over a deeply rumblin groove, while the 'Miggi Mix' has got a slight techy edge to it. Lastly the 'Collision Mix' is something for a rave with its acidic keys over the pumped up beat. Soulato return with "So good so real" coming in two dub variations: Tony Largo delivers a smooth yet powerful interpretation that keeps it soulful while Jerry Flores smoothes it down further to create a deeper and more laidback interpretation with jazzy keys.

Various "Miami Sampler '07" (Bubble Soul Records CD Promo)

It has been quiet around Bubble Soul in recent months, but this will change soon as their Miami sampler includes some gems. UPZ present "Ti-moune", an uplifting production with jazzy keys and male african chants over a smoothly thumpin' beat that is spreading a feel good vibe. The 'Deep Voodoo Mix' gives the track a darker vibe. Next up is "God is love" by DJ Pipp vs Danny Marquez which was already included on last years sampler and features male spoken words. The 'DJ Pippi Rasta Deep Mix' is a fiercely rumblin' affair using a deep bassline groove that has influences from reggae and dub, while the 'DJ Pippi Ragga Style Mix' uses ragga beats as base. The 'Pierre Ravan & Uranus Lounge Mix' takes the track to the chill out territory, using a downbeat groove. The 'KOKI & DM Hypnodelic Dub/Instrumental' mixes take the track to deeper territory. Lastly there is another track by UPZ included: "Moment with U" features a sexy female vocal over a smoothly stompin' groove that is enriched with melodic keys and a funky rumblin' bassline. Kiko Navarro provides the remix, powering things up and adding additional jazz-funky instrumentation.

Various "Deeptown Music WMC 2007 Sampler" (Deeptown Music Records CD Promo)

This brand new label presents a truly hot sampler that is kicked of with "I get deep" by DJ Le Roi featuring Roland Clark (which we presented in our Miami 2007 (P)review two weeks ago already). Next up is the uplifting "Feeling" by Mirco Esposito & Tommy Mads, a piano driven stormin' house affair with a soulful vocal by Andrew Robinson. The dub mixes (vocal/instrumental) take the track deeper, with extra techy keys added. Dario Dattis provides the remix, giving it a deep rewoeking with electrofied keys. "The Soulpreachers Groove" is a laidback groover featuring jazzy keys over deeply thupmin' beats,  included here in a rough demo version. Closing down the CD is "Be free" by DJ Le Roi featuring M.W., a deely stormin' track featuring an incredibly hot organ ride alongside male spoken words and ad-libs. The 'Bonus Mix' of the track uses the music from "I get deep".

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