With a fast-and-furious release schedule, a preference for remix-stuffed EPs over simple two-trackers, and growling hunger for unheralded talent, New York's Throne Of Blood is grabbing contemporary dance music by the horns like few other labels right now. Favoring tracks classic in form yet wildly contemporary in sound, the label has found a staunch ally in Luv Jam, AKA Andrew Cole, whose peculiar sides for the likes of We Play House and Black Sheep Trax are as seemingly incongruous with house mores as they are resonant with them. In terms of mood, Luv Jam's Nesta Nip EP might be one of label head James Friedman's (and Luv Jam's) lowest-key releases in a minute. But it might also be the highlight of their recent run.
Luv Jam is a minimalist at heart: rather than build and break down by stacking or subtracting huge numbers of instruments and effects, he keeps a pretty steady ensemble and moves things along with more subtle compositional strategies. "Nesta" is the embodiment of a highly musical approach, employing just a couple of key elements—a humble electronic kit, a ping-ponging chord, a couple well-placed crescendos—for the sort of epicness most guys would crash their computers trying to achieve.
Anything Cole left to our imagination is filled in by newcomers Infields, who don't so much remix as expound upon "Nesta"'s original intent. Even for Luv Jam, "Ponciau" is subtle, with slivers of Autechre-esque melody and tastefully druggy asides drawing listeners ever inward. Closing with the crisp snares, tough-to-place strums and playful acid of the ebullient "Circle," Cole sums up the release's allure in full: sophisticated yet unpretentious, minimal yet never brittle, it's a pleasure whose richness takes you by surprise.
Buy Luv Jam - Nesta Nip EP at
Tracklist: Luv Jam - Nesta Nip EPA1 Nesta
A2 Nesta (Infields Remix)