Monday, 12 January 2015

Various Artists - Tribal Roots - Batti Batti Records

It is pretty cold round these parts this time of year, not to say a little cheerless following the festive overload, but if there is one thing guaranteed to warm the cockles then that is a new release from the beauteous Batti Batti.

And Tribal Roots, the eighth EP from the ever-consistent deep house label, is a particularly heart-warming treat.

Indeed, featuring old favourites, stalwarts and newcomers too, tracks inspired from across the house and techno spectrum plus more deepness than a Jacques Cousteau expedition, Tribal Roots once again showcases the Malta-based imprint at its very finest.

Take the title cut from label boss Owen Jay and regular partner Melchior Sultana. Just when I thought I had the measure of the pair, that I understood their dark twisted tendencies versus their moody Mediterranean-influenced leanings, they go and flip the script and knock out a track so outrageously funky and infectious that all you can really say is ‘wow’. Teaming up with drummer and percussionist Antoine from Malta’s leading live act, Tribali, the track is a lengthy bongo workout par excellence, underpinned carefully by Jay and Sultana’s restrained kick, that suddenly bursts brilliantly and warmly into deep house heaven with the sound of summer stamped all over it. Simply stunning.

It is a tough act to follow for sure but fortunately the other artists on board are more than up to the job. 1Dan, a returnee to Batti Batti, is one of those producers who seems to have slipped below the radar for many but really shouldn’t have. He’s obviously not escaped Jay’s attention and here on the rather splendid Recovery Process serves up some tough beats balanced by a melancholic undulating synth and an erotic-temptress vocal sample.

Marco Nega, another member of the Batti Batti family, is also back with Inside Out, yet another slab of soulful and infectious deep house featuring the vocal talents of Leen Vivid. On another occasion this excellent cut may have grabbed top billing but hasn’t such is the strength in depth on Tribal Roots.

Proving this point ably is closing track Depth Of The Ocean from the underground’s First Lady, Rai Scott. It’s trademark Scott; ambient, atmospheric and delivered with aplomb. This time with more of a techno-bent, Depth Of The Ocean is the kind of quality deepness that has elevated Scott to sought-after status on the circuit. It’s her first appearance on Batti Batti. I doubt it will be her last.

Check out:
Batti Batti Records online
Batti Batti @ FB
Tribal Roots @ Juno

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