A staple of German deep house looks to breakbeats.
Moomin - Concrete Grounds
The German deep house scene Moomin emerged from, best associated with the Hamburg crews Smallville and Dial, was known for lush pads and straight drums. Broken beats, which can now be heard in scenes from Berlin (Slow Life) to Vancouver (Mood Hut), weren't as common as they are today. The new release from Moomin, who hasn't released a solo EP since 2015, features one track that feels very much of the moment. "Concrete," an atmospheric house tune with strings, bird calls, sampled vocal snatches ("yeah!," "woo!") and, you guessed it, a fat breakbeat, feels like a bridge between 2010 and today. The groove is nimble but the atmosphere is thick, soaking the sampled break with a range of thick tones. It's not the first time Moomin has toyed with such sounds—he sampled Antonio's classic "Hyper Funk" on a 2016 remix for Acasual—so "Concrete" feels natural.
"Grounds," the EP's other track, feels less natural. Its thumping kick is the heaviest Moomin has ever put out, and is the backbone of the kind of directionless tune that became too common in the German deep house scene. Functional and straight, it's like a Head High record without the character. Stick to the more colourful A-side.