- Plenty of DJs play eclectic music, but few do so with the gusto of Hunee. During the final minutes of his recent Boiler Room set in South Korea, Hunee was grinning, his shirt flapping wide open. The vibe was jubilant as an obscure calypso record was greeted like a well-worn classic. His ability to move clubs and festivals with such unconventional music sets him apart. His new compilation, Hunchin' All Night, shows the range of sounds you're likely to hear in one of his best sets.
Two tracks make the compilation a must-buy. Larry Heard's "Burning 4 Love" and Blak Beat Niks' "Ritual Of Love" are as good as house music gets. "Burning 4 Love" is a cult favourite plucked from Heard's astonishingly strong catalogue. "Ritual Of Love," produced by Ron Trent, is a deep house high-point. There's not a huge deal going on, but what's there is somehow perfect. Classic house records are bolstered by excellent techno cuts from Kenny Larkin, as Dark Comedy, and Jan Svensson, AKA Villa Åbo.
From there the music spans continents, styles and eras, but it always has the dance floor in mind. Highlights include several sought-after African records: Pat Thomas's "Yesu San Bra: Disco Hi-Life," Don Laka's "Stages," Stanislas Toho's "Owhaaou !" and Boncana Maïga's "Komya Hondo." All of them cross-pollinate funk rhythms with Afrobeat or highlife to fantastic effect. There are also introverted moments from Mappa Mundi and the experimental Portuguese musicians Carlos Maria Trindade and Nuno Canavarro. Trindade and Canavarro's "Blu Terra" is an evocative opener, full of Fourth World-esque flutes and percussion. Hunee once studied systematic musicology, which deals with the acoustics, aesthetics, psychology and anthropology of music. As Hunchin' All Night shows, he remains a devoted student, eagerly discovering new sounds in record shops as he travels the world.
He also thinks deeply about the emotional impact of music and its connection to the crowd. As he told Aaron Coultate during the Dekmantel festival conference, "There's a psychology about persuasion in DJing. I want to create a shared experience. In terms of dynamic, you have a room of people with many different interests and many different reasons for being there." Almost every track on Hunchin' All Night has an earworm quality that could make it the standout tune of a long night of dancing. The compilation, filled with music that's instantly memorable and far from obvious, shows the special something that makes Hunee a great DJ.
01. Carlos Maria & Nuno Canavarro - Blu Terra
02. Aby Ngana Diop - Michael Ozone's Liital Rhythm
03. Boncana Maïga - Komya Hondo
04. Tohon Stanislas - Owhaaou ! (Raphael Top Secret Edit)
05. Don Laka - Stages
06. Blak Beat Niks - Ritual Of Love (Ron's Beat Down Mix)
07. Larry Heard - Burning 4 You
08. Villa Åbo - Made On Coffee & Wine
09. Mappa Mundi - Trance Fusion (Hunee Tempo Edit)
10. Pat Thomas - Yesu San Bra: Disco Hi-Life
11. Unknown Artist - Akal Akal
12. Dark Comedy - Without A Sound (Long White Label Version)