For Club Use Only is your one-stop guide to the best underground dance music from across the world. Each month, The Astral Plane’s Gabe Meier forecasts the next wave of sounds due to break through into the mainstream.
September brought a darker tint to the usual club fare and found a range of DJs exploring truly outré material. There were moments of brightness, of course, particularly Colin Self’s latest for RVNG Intl., Ana Caprix’s ‘Long Dark Summer’ mix and DEBIT’s Love Discipline tape for Quiet Time, but albums from Bliss Signal, Eartaker and Teresa Winter came off as deeply physical mood pieces. Miss Kenzo, Odete and Sentinel & SmallLittleCupid dove into the abyss on mixes for JEROME, Discwoman and Unseelie respectively, proving there is plenty of music to cut through to the bone.
‘Just Because This is A Funeral It Doesn’t Mean We Can’t Rave’
This lithe, speedy techno number from Paris’ crystallmess is a real pleasure, anchored by a somber piano line and buoyed by hyperactive percussion encircling a central kick march. Like Nkisi with more uplift.
There’s a theory that human evolution is not a matter of survival of the fittest but a process of creating the optimal vessel for bacteria. SCAM, a Sydney-based producer who is releasing his debut Vibrio EP on Air Max ‘97’s DECISIONS label, explores the relationship between body and bacteria on ‘Host’, an effortlessly floating track punctuated by the refrain “everybody in this room is a host.” It’s biologically-inclined music with a fundamental humanism, a new framing for body-oriented club music.
‘What I Need’
Jasmine Infiniti matches the spirit of ballroom with junglist energy on ‘What I Need’, the closing track of her debut SiS EP on Club Chai’s label arm. The effort is sparse and militant, a natural, if somewhat more raucous, end to an EP full of deep, hypnotic grooves and subterranean vocal samples.
Cape Town’s Angel-Ho firmly returns to the dancefloor on ‘Doll’, a percussion-heavy track that comes on the heels of a series of eccentric pop experiments. Arguably since their debut on Halcyon Veil in 2015, we haven’t seen the NON co-founder push the pedal to the metal like this and it’s exciting to have them back in this arena if only for a moment.
‘Good In My Hood’
‘Good In My Hood’ is the latest effort from BSNYEA, one of the guiding lights of New York’s Litefeet sound and a producer excelling at making kinetic, body-focused dance tracks. This one is driven by a particularly elastic bassline and abetted by chipmunk vocals, welcomingly giving it a distinctly mid-2000s sound.
‘Dimples In Ha Back’
KAYY DRiZZ always brings an unbridled energy to her productions, which are often aided by her own hooks and ad-libs. ‘Dimples In Ha Back’ is the latest in that vein from the Chicago-based artist, replete with her immediately recognizable chant vocals and an arena-ready lead synth line.
Ohio’s BUILD crew have been releasing some of the most creative edit packs around and the fifth edition of their RECONSTRUCTIONS series may be the best yet. With bits of D-Lo, Heart and Orphx, it’s genuinely eclectic — and not in a contrived post-modern way. More importantly, its five tracks absolutely slam. Rafa Maya’s take on Sami Baha gets the nod here, but Mistress, v1984, Alex Compton and Syn also provide standout moments.
This seven minute epic from Cairo-London’s FRKTL is an exercise in the relationship between organic and electronic sound, matching bird sounds, sub low frequencies and voice. Initially sludgy and baroque, the track gains propulsion through piston-like drum programming five minutes in, enhancing its already corporeal energy.
‘Call On Meht’
This edit could have gone horribly wrong, but Sunareht has made magic out of Eric Prydz’s comically melodramatic ‘Call On You’, atomizing its core melody and giving the whole thing just enough French touch to get us through.
Future x Organ Tapes x Lechuga Zafiro
‘Wet Diamonds (Why Be Blend)’
Organ Tapes and Future have proven to be a winning combination in the past and Why Be’s smash up of the two, alongside a new Lechuga Zafiro cut, is as sublime as you might expect.