- The title track of Sandboards' Visa EP begins with a quote from Frankie Knuckles. In a now-famous 1986 interview, Chicago documentarian Phil Ranstrom asks, "How hot is house music right now?" To which the Godfather Of House replies with slightest of smiles, "On a scale of 1 to 10? It's 12." New Zealanders Tomas Krammer and Eden Burns seem to use this audio as either a show of authenticity or an easter egg for clued-up listeners, but regardless of their intentions, the music adheres to the implied ethos of classicism. With standard synth tones and no-frills dance beats, the duo's debut for Bicep's Feel My Bicep label delivers big-room energy in an enjoyably familiar package.
"Pinnk Slippz" does this with more gusto than "Visa," nearly overplaying its hand. The five-note bassline is a touch on the nose with its brooding verve, and the ever-present arps that keep the music lifted just off the ground never build on the tension they create. But some rolling drum patterns and stratospheric synth lines give the fixed arrangement more dynamics. On "Visa," Krammer and Burns stick to their gummy, off-the-cuff bassline and bouncy 4/4, but slowly fill out the structure with airy digital pads, subtle effects and drops of the titular sample. There's nothing all that special about it, and yet the music's winsome confidence is striking. London producer Shinra gives the tune a glossy electro makeover, a welcome bit of future-funk on an otherwise conventional EP.
A2 Visa (Shinra Remix)
B1 Pinnk Slippz