Tribute To Disc Shop Zero
Idle Hands/UK/12
Idle Hands is a record store and label based in Bristol, England. The label has been operational since 2009 and has released material by artists such as Peverelist, Kowton, Shanti Celeste and Rhythmic Theory. It’s hard to pin down Idle Hands generically as it covers a lot of ground from dubstep and garage to house and techno.

This EP is dedicated to the Disc Shop Zero in Tokyo’s Shimotikazawa district. The owner, Naoki E-Jima, has been an ardent supporter of the music coming out of Bristol since the days when Smith & Mighty were running things and he continues to do so with the music of Bristolians like Pinch and Peverelist. The EP contains two tracks; the first is “Lost Soul” by Outboxx remixed by Rob Smith, of Smith And Mighty.

The track, in its original form, appeared on the project’s debut album on Idle Hands in 2013. Smith’s mix was supposed to be on a remix EP that didn’t materialize. He takes the 2-Step meets boogie feel of the original and skillfully morphs it into a deep, rolling reggae stepper with shimmering, glassy keyboards and cavernous dub effects, which are especially apparent on the delicate, soulful vocals of Naomi Jeremy.

On the flipside Atki2 delivers the fluid fusion of techno, classic US garage and UK garage that is “He’s Royal.” An angular, technoid bass line conspires with Rhodes chords, drifting synth chords, whistling keyboard textures and rolling, skipping beats to create a track that will move any dance floor on which it is unleashed. It’s techy but melodic and the rattling snare work really drives the track forward.

This one should be out by September 8th. Grab it when you see it, whether you like some reggae-inflected bass music or techno-tinged garage. Christopher Orr