Source : IVoice

Various Artists – This Is Bass Culture mixed by D’Julz

D’Julz has always been the kind of dance-music artist who comes across as being a DJ foremost and a producer secondly. That’s not a statement that should be considered dismissive of the Frenchartist’s studio work, but rather that his productions have always sounded to a large extent informed by his identity as a DJ. His inspiration comes live and direct from the floor. It’s a fact attended to by the Bass Culture label that he’s been running since 2009.

The imprint is named after the legendary Bass Culture night thatD’Julz has been running at Paris’ Rex Club since 1997 (the venue’s longest standing residency), a party which can take the credit for introducing figures such as Loco Dice and Steve Bug to the Frenchcapital. In the nearly forty releases that it has put out, the imprint has largely stuck to the ethos and sounds of the Bass Culture club nights. That is, a variety of house sounds from the freshest underground producers, incorporating everything from minimal to techy to deep grooves, all unified by one common denominator: incredible, undulating low-end rhythms.

Unsurprisingly, it is a quality that is mirrored in the label’s inaugural compilation, This Is Bass Culture. D’Julz has selected and mixed fifteen tracks from the label’s back catalogue and future releases that encapsulate the imprint’s impressive breadth of house sounds, all unified by the ever-prominence of their basslines.

Proceedings begin with three of the label’s most loved, deep cuts. The bottomless bassline and dreamy synth work of Fred P.’s remix of ‘Jaia’ ease the listener into the mix, followed by the stirring DJ Quremix of Joel Alter’s ‘Rules Of Love’ and the hypnotic climbing chords of Alter’s ‘Silence Is Golden’.

This isn’t a mix where one sound is allowed to dominate for too long, and the submerged vibes gradually give way for a more percussive tipple, with numbers from Rio Padice and Art Alfie & Mr Tophat. Continuing to build, the energy peaks mid mix with Franco Cellini’s shuffling vocal number ‘Home’, whose samples of an MC and a baying audience manages to bottle the energy of a club at midnight. Taking another turn, the arrival of D’Julz’s own edit of Anonym’s ‘Lov Is Easy’ takes the mix back to techier territories, followed by a forthcoming collaboration betweenD’Julz and Cassy that combines soulful vocals with menacing synths and a whirring bassline.

The kind of dance-music that fixates on basslines can sometimes be a little, let’s we say, ‘unsubtle’. Productions with scant attention paid to anything but the low-end rhythms, might work fine on a packed dance-floor but for home-listening offer very little. Perhaps the most refreshing aspect of both this compilation and Bass Culture in general is that isn’t the case. The basslines might be the most important ingredients, but never at the expense of other components.

Point in question, the two back-to-back offerings from Mr G. Here, thunderous chords, hypnotic gospel samples and techy drum-work weave into an overwhelming cacophonous canvas that works on the mind and the body in the same instance. Whilst, the jazz instrumentation and alto-horns of album closer ‘Besides’ from Oleg Poliakov make for a track that radiates beyond the functionality of its groove and becomes something quite special indeed (the only criticism being that it’s a strange choice to finish on, with it building to a burgeoning momentum that is followed by sudden silence).

As you might expect of a DJ who has been releasing mix CDs at regular intervals since the early nineties and who has been a longstanding figure at Circoloco at DC10, the mixing here is seamless. What’s more the selection is unfaultable, a journey through the imprint’s nuances that eschews grand statements for grooves of subtler, yet just as potent, power. Joining the dots between Bass Culture’s past, present and future, and offering an impression of D’Julz’s impeccable tastes as a selector, This Is Bass Culture presents a fantastic snapshot of both one of Paris’top house talents and best underground labels.

Various Artists
Title: This Is Bass Culture mixed by D’Julz
Label: Bass cultureTracklist01. Kasper – Jaia (Fred P. Remix)02. Joel Alter – Rules Of Love (DJ Qu Remix)03. Joel Alter – Silence Is Golden04. Rio Padice – Deeptstation05. Mr Tophat & Art Alfie – Ressle’s Restroom06. John Jastszebski – Work07. Franco Cinelli – Hom08. Chris Simmonds – The Way U Want 2 B (instrumental mix)09. Anonym – Lov Is Easy (D’Julz Edit)10. Cassy & D’Julz – What U See in Me11. D’Julz – Da Madness (2013 mix)12. The Analog Cops & Alex Picone – Out Of Passion13. Mr G – Got That Swing14. Mr G – Sunday Blues (Kasper Remix)15. Oleg Poliakov – Besides

Our rating: 8/10