- The DJing, the festivals, the A-list lifestyle—being Jamie Jones looks like a lot of fun. But for Jones, it's the studio time he values most: "The jamming bit is probably my favourite part of my whole job," he told Hunger TV in 2014. That year was quiet on the production front for Jones, so fans must've been happy to see him back at it in 2015, releasing three EPs, including one on Green Velvet's Cajual Records, and starting a second label alongside Lee Foss.
Jones continues this run into 2016 with Illicit Behaviour, a five-tracker on Kerri Chandler's Kaoz Theory. With two originals and remixes from Matthias Tanzmann, Stephane Ghenacia (brother of Apollonia's Dan) and Fuse London resident Seb Zito, it's an eye-catching package, but the reality is less exciting. Jones's thing has always been basslines, and both the title track and "New Skool Acid" feature slightly different takes on a signature—and, by now, somewhat stale—style. The former has more swing, brought to life by crisp, punchy kicks, while the latter shuffles with a muted growl. Both feel more like tools than fleshed-out songs, the kind of records Jones might play to bridge together more interesting ideas.
"New Skool Acid" is the flattest of the originals, so it's strange that it gets reworked three times. Jones's Circoloco cohort, Tanzmann, goes first, turning out a tech house roller as uninspired as any you'll hear this year. Ghenacia rescues the EP with a balmy deep house version, all softly lit chords and a bassline that's warm to the touch. Zito's version is more techy, but there's a similar depth and subtle rhythmic flair that keeps you locked. Neither of the two final remixes are extraordinary, and yet they outshine Jones and Tanzmann's efforts by a considerable stretch. Perhaps that's because those DJs regularly play for large, faceless crowds, and entertaining big rooms calls for tracks with big drums and big basslines. Ghenacia and Zito, on the other hand, are both less established than their counterparts here, still able to favor nuance over basic pleasures.
01. Illicit Behaviour
02. New Skool Acid
03. New Skool Acid (Matthias Tanzmann Remix)
04. New Skool Acid (Stephane Ghenacia Remix)
05. New Skool Acid (Seb Zito Remix)