Artist : Gennaro Mastrantonio & Billy Johnston
Title : Basement Noise EP
Label : Yellow Tail Records
Release : Out Now
Genre : House
Germany has always been a breeding ground for quality house and techno labels, Yellow Tail Records hails from Cologne, the brainchild of Andrea Engels. New release Basement Noise EP by Gennaro Mastrantonio and Billy Johnston is one of those timeless records only someone like Danny Howells seems to unearth and play to death.
Lead track, Basement Noise rumbles into life with the kind of 90s elastic bass line Kerri Chandler would use. Added to it are nuanced percussions tricks to keep interest, and well placed piano stabs which further augment this track into the mists of time. Remixer Jay Denham has a pretty unenviable job insomuch as taking this near perfect original some place different enough to make it stand out, without completely ruining the EP. He’s done a good job.
The drums are crisper, the bass is rumbling but with a keyed bongo line running alone with it, all slowly creeping toward a white noise break around the 3.30 mark. In fact, my only complaint – and its a personal thing more than a fault with the track – the use of the word ‘minimal’ throughout which adds nothing at all.
B-side track Sword Lead is a darker, more claustrophobic affair. The opening 16 bars being a deep subby kick, barely audible sonics and little else. Things pick up pace around the 1.30 mark as a mutated horn stab draws us closer. Suited to the late morning session, this is the kind of grimy techno you need to get into your own space and dance all night.
Remixer extraordinaire Samuel L Session has of late, been making some fierce tracks of his own. Already featured on a recent podcast by fellow countryman Oliver Lieb, Samuel’s version is tougher but less claustrophobic. Reverberated bells punctuate the groove periodically, adding a tension and darkness as Samuel expertly mutates the sound in to something far sinister.
Top Marks all round!