Pound Shop Alex Petridis
Get past the cover youâ€™d expect to see on a CD in the supermarket you buy and take home for your little sister, and this icy collection of quality progressive house becomes a serious contender for your cash.
Flavour-of-the-moment Beckers does well with Road Movie, a cracking psybooty-packed groove going on with it. It picks up the energy nicely, breaks, then comes back with a sweet, simple melodic run in the middle. Gather more pace with some added twist and crunch in the background, some nice Detroit stabs, and we have a winner.
The Funky Badgersâ€™ Funky Tramp builds neatly into a Global Underground-friendly lost-in-music groove, and Fitalicâ€™s Farscape has a space-funk feel to it thatâ€™s simultaneously oldskool and futuristic. Conny Gâ€™s Cliff Drum is great, itâ€™s hypnotic and tribal up to a delirious breakdown, where it picks up an insane tecchy vibe, atonal lines and a ticklish high-end, really setting things off, while Giftâ€™s Please Donâ€™t Go is deep-as-ya-like with a smokey, hypnotising lead.
Space Safariâ€™s Groovy Time is a great record ruined by an over-long, too-quiet, and distracting Austin Powers sample. Seriously. The appreciation of the tune itself is wrecked, by a sample that detracts from the depth, soul and passion underneath. Bah.
Thomas Pentonâ€™s Distorted Reality is â€“ and Iâ€™m not kidding here â€“ possibly one of my favourite tunes of the year. Itâ€™s just breathtaking. Itâ€™s not progressive, itâ€™s not psytrance, itâ€™s not techno, but itâ€™s a staggering combination of all three. In fact, if someone told me that this was actually by Underworld Iâ€™d believe them â€“ itâ€™s got that timeless, effortless, superlatively energetic buzz flowing all the way through it, and when it drops into its final run the tears of quality are literally streaming down your face. Utterly bloody fantastic.
Finally Robert Eslterâ€™s Random Reset Machine doesnâ€™t really cut the mustard and sounds very tacked-on to the end of anotherwise solid-enough compilation. Groove Control may not offer quite the organic progressive experience that a lot of DJs on the psychedelic end of prog are looking for, but anyone caugfht by the PsyBooty buzz who likes chucking a bit of funk into the mix is well catered-for here. The crossover is happening, kids, and Nervine have contributed a decent effort to the cause.