Sergeant Watt has picked his grunts carefully – these two are heavyweight artists well-prepared for gruelling club workouts. Round one is a dogfight with Âme taking on the lush, electric and deep Rodamaal track ‘Insomnia’. Featuring the vocals of Portuguese singer Claudio Franco, the original was low slung, slow and sexy number, but Âme’s rethink kicks in more for peak time with Chinook-sized basslines and samples stabbing and driving around the gorgeous vocal. Vocal are tricky – people are quick to rubbish them as too pop or too easy, but they work here, giving the track a bona fide groove. The Âme remix strings out the lush horns and driving keys, serious, sad and dangerous, halfway through building chord progressions to really involve the crowd. This is no three-minute Fruity Loops Sunday project, production duties from these two Germans are as precise, accurate and on point as ever.
Second on the assault course are Nova Dream Sequence, aka King Britt, remixing Lephtee’s ‘So Far Back’. King Britt has previously produced lush deep house with Alma Horton (Sylk 130) and created an Ibiza dancefloor weapon of choice with his remix of Josh One’s ‘Contemplation’, but in his new NDS guise he really bridges the distance between deep house and its tech, electro, micro and minimal cousins. A stealth bassline chops and charges while atmospheric chords, cosmic keys and samples wash around emotive, dark stabs. With re-worked synths, metallic clicks and hisses referencing Carl Craig and Kraftwerk, the track is emotional, full of groove and a definite strand of life for the dancefloor.
Overall, I am impressed with Ben Watt’s recruits here. These days he’s far from his Lazy Dog days and the West London yuppie club Neighbourhood – I popped down to his new East London party at Plastic People where DJ Rocco from Rodomaal was creating a definitely deep vibe, but Ben seemed to dissect the deck at peaktime in an attempt to imitate a German Get Physical night. Premier UK deep house labels shouldn’t be jumping on that bandwagon, but this release is a return to roots, a nice two-track epic where Âme and Nova Dream Sequence justly earn their stripes. I am already hearing the tracks at parties like Secret Sundaze and on Radio 1’s Essential Mix. The future is looking healthy at Buzzin’ Fly with Sergeant Watt at the leather whip – all aboard and please stand to attention.