I spent a lot of the weekend tidying up and reorganising my studio, as it was frankly a disgusting mess. During the process I was listening to a lot of records that I haven’t had time to play of late. As a matter of course I also started ripping some of them as I went, most of it 90’s house, but out of about the 20-30 tracks I ripped the one that jumped out and stuck with me right through till today was Ian Pooley's – Balmes (A Better Life).
It’s a 5 minute Samba-House work out by Berlin based Pooley, and I guess the most obvious comparison/reference point is a track like Samba Magic by Basement Jaxx/Summer Daze, yet in many ways this is a much stronger track than Samba Magic (which in itself is a truly great song). I don’t know if it’s a sample or an arrangement but it’s looped and built to perfection, with melody and key changes that really convey that same sense of energy that you get with Samba and other Latin based music.
I first heard this track back in around 2001 at a party and having enquired what It was I then spent about two years trying to track down a copy. The LP version is nice, but for some reason I prefer the one on the 12” – it’s actually a vocal track but the instrumental for me works so much better. It starts very averagely with a beat and a filtered bass line that you could be forgiven for thinking doesn’t promise much, that drops out in a long pad tone and then you hear the flamenco guitar building in the background. Till it all kicks off and you’re shuffling around the room knees together and a sway in your hips that you never knew was there before.
The thing I really like is that unlike so many sample based Latin tracks it really understands the fact that whilst it seems to be all about a groove it’s more about building to those uplifting moments (Latin dance music is very emotive in my opinion), and Pooley gets this absolutely spot on, with the building filtered stabs and the switches in energy making truly arms in the air, a smile on your face, moments.
Anyway, I'm the first to admit that I’m no expert on Latin music, or even Latin House but I like what I like, and I really like this.
Playlist Wednesday 1st August 2012
I've had the luxury of late starts this week, so I've been able to take my time in the morning, see my family before i head out and generally laze my way into work. It's a rare luxury but one I intend to enjoy to the max this week.
My journey is a little longer but as a result I've been reading a lot and mixing up a bit of work and listening and so on. Which has resulted in som quite short playlists, but hey it's summer right?
Today I hopped on the train and after a little bit of reading (le Carre) I decided it was time for some music. I plugged in and, probably due to the sun i decided it had to be Ian Pooley and Balmes, from there i kept it latino and took in Summer Daze – Samba Magic and the original Airto Samba De Flora. Took it 90's house from there, Master at Work – Deep Inside, Black Science Orcehstra – New Jersey Deep and Todd Edwards – Saved my life.
I needed something with a bit more meat though and rarely for me decided I was going to rock out andlistened to Led Zepplin – Whole Lotta love (if you've never heard it check out Ike & Tina turners version of it) followed by Fleetwood Mac The Chain. I hit the door to work just as Buckinghams screaming guitar solo faded.
Not too shabby a start to the day.
Playlist: Ian Pooley – Balmes, Summer Daze – Samba Magic, Airto – Samba de Flora, Masters at work – Deep Inside, Black Science Orchestra – New Jersey Deep, todd Edwards – Saved my Life. Led Zepplin – Whole lotta Love, Fleetwood Mac – The Chain