- Raunchy, unbridled ghetto house, juke and footwork for the club.
- Just moments ago, New York's dance music scene was on a steady ascent. It was easily the place to test your chops as a successful artist, and the natural birthing grounds for those to-be. We now face an entirely different reality: clubs are shuttered, bars struggle to stay afloat and once-touring DJs have grown attuned to the perks of live stream culture. As it stands, the fate of the dance music scene in New York sits precariously in the air. But many of us continue to turn to dance music for cathartic release while indoors, and early into the city's lockdown, the weight of uncertainty looming over the scene was somewhat lifted when Towhead Recordings released New York Dance Music. In a prescient move, the compilation captures a moment in time, joining a solid cast of artists currently at the helm of New York's high-energy sound.
Though the focus is on New York, the influence of '90s Chicago is written all over this release. The jittery pulse of footwork shapes Color Plus and AceMo's "In The Spot," a cinematic opener with battle-ready ambient interludes, gun cocks, and grizzly vocoder vocals. DJ SWISHA gives Cajmere's Percolator a fresh twist with "Juke-A-Later," a fool-proof and destined juke staple. AceMo's "Yup (Mhm)" is a baffling deluge of whiplash claps, whistling sirens, carrying the propulsive energy of DJ Assault. And much in line with that raw, bombastic ghetto house of yesteryear, the lyrics are slick and raunchy. There's talk of freaks and ass-shaking on DJ John Brooklyn's "Real Freaks," a house-influenced track driven forward by gritty claps and the occasional "Ha" crash. In MoMA Ready's "Booty Ass-O-Matic," Stevens himself says, "I slid into her DMs for her OnlyFans, but it's cool 'cus we're only friends." The less subtle "Pop n Shake," courtesy of DJ SWISHA and Kanyon, is booty music with a darker, futuristic touch.
It would be negligent to omit jungle from the conversation on New York's dance music, and Kush Jones arises to the challenge with "Acid Jungle ID," a zippy jungle track topping 180 BPM with blistering-quick acid lines and an addictive bassline. AceMoMA's "Booty Optics" is a breakbeat highlight complete with heady rim knocks and wirey, intergalactic melodies. Color Plus shines on an explicit club-meets-ballroom offering "Pum Plate," and once more on "Dogscan," where he balances deep-house ambiance with obliterating bass. Then bringing things down a notch, J. Albert's "Dimensional Phrasing" is a black hole of distorted, chiming melodies, and James Bangura's "LAX" is introspective club, full of fantastic breaks and brilliantly gravity-defying frequencies. If the future of New York's dance music is in these hands, we'll have much to look forward to.
01. AceMo x Color Plus - In the Spot
02. MoMA Ready - Booty Ass-O-Matic
03. J. Albert - Dimensional Phrasing
04. DJ SWISHA - Juke-A-Later (DJ Tool)
05. DJ John Brooklyn - Real Freaks
06. Kush Jones - Acid Jungle ID
07. Color Plus - Pum Plate
08. James Bangura - LAX
09. AceMoMA x Kanyon - Untitled
10. OSSX - Kid Cutty (Pissy Pampel)
11. AceMo - Yup (mhm)
12. Kanyon - Taste
13. Color Plus - Dogscan
14. J. Albert - Get In, We're Going Out
15. AceMoMA - Booty Optics
16. Loud Provider - Juke-A-Later RMX
17. DJ SWISHA x Kanyon - Pop n Shake