Nick Höppner didn't just compile his recent Panorama Bar 04 mix after a casual look through his record crate. Keen to create something special, Ostgut's A&R manager commissioned new cuts from several producers. Sadly, when the tracks came back, not all of them could fit into the mix. One of the upshots, however, is Bobby Tacker, Phillip Lauer and Gerd Janson's first record of original material as Tuff City Kids. It's also the second on Unterton, Ostgut's new sub-label. Fittingly, the EP sounds like it was made with Berghain and Panorama Bar in mind. It's house, but with techno's attitude.
"S.F.S." powers out of the blocks with a jagged, brightly-hued synth arrangement, only getting larger as time goes on. The bassline used doesn't sound like acid, but the way the duo manage to whip it away for savage, barking asides is reminiscent of the 303's speedy versatility. On the B-side, "Bias" has a more soulful patina by way of delayed, rhythmic vocals, but underneath, its drums are just as tough and dry-sounding. So too does its synth refrain tear at the periphery of the canvas, rather than caress. The final cut, "Begger," is both the record's most funky and bruising. Simple filter house at heart, it nonetheless manages to sound complex, its thundering toms and sinister bass twirling in a sickening, high speed dance. Like the other two, it shows that personality need not be sacrificed in the name of simplicity or functionality.
Tracklist: Tuff City Kids - Bobby TackerA SFS
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