Are these long days getting you down? Are the falling leaves reminding you about the awful impermanence of life? Never fear, I have just the thing. Homegrown in the UK, imported via Belgium and crafted to warm and soothe in equal measure, this is NZT004, Soul:Motion & Colossus – Bittersweet / Living A Lie
I was pretty excited when I saw all three of Centrik (the soul), Mos (the motion) and Colossus (just Colossus) on a release together. The Soul:Motion boys have been hard at it down south, honing their gorgeous sweeping liquid sound to a fine point, while Colossus has been grafting up north both as a solo producer, with his own brand of tightly engineered rollers, and running his Rush Records imprint.
They’ve come together on Limitless Recordings, a relatively new Dutch label with a short but illustrious history. Their last release was a stunning four track EP from London duo GLXY, the title track of which stood out enough to get featured on UKF. In the past Limitless have played host to the likes of Northern Zone, Hugh Hardie, Loz Contreras and Phase, establishing themselves some fairly impressive liquid credentials in the process and they’ve definitely kept the end up here.
Like I said above, getting Soul:Motion and Colossus on a track together is noteworthy. They all compliment each other, bringing something different to the table that makes their tunes more than the sum of their parts.
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Bittersweet, on the A, is just that. It’s a fast-paced soulful affair, rich in vocal sample and supported by some crisp, weighty drums and a tasteful bongo loop. It’s not just the drums though, but the rich tapestry that’s woven in the movement between the vocal sample, the Soul:Motion signature piano riff and the playful bassline. It’s a track with a less-is-more approach to ornamentation, subtly experimenting with the occasional lonely growl and tactful pauses at the end of the bar. Bittersweet’s clean and understated and deep without being cheesy.
The B side, Living A Lie, is built along much the same lines as it’s brother on the A, but don’t let that deter you: it’s a thing of beauty in its own right. This one’s more about the vocal sample than anything. It gets pride of place in the mixdown and, pared off against a set of sweeping strings that give the whole track an open airy feel. It’s melancholy and thoughtful, without being cheesy.
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Detractors will point to the lack of variety between the two tracks but I don’t think that’s a bad thing. Both tunes are stunning expositions of liquid D&B lovingly crafted by three young producers on their A game. I’ve seen strong looks and this is one of them.
Pre-order here. Full release 16/11/15
Written by: Thomas Benjamin