'Deep Africa' is the first single from Lawton's soon-come debut album
Two of the main men behind Newcastle's highly respected Deep Fix Recordings join forces on the first single from Lawton's debut long-player (due June), which is brought to you by brand new UK label House Music Matters. And with Lawton having racked up a highly impressive production CV over the past half-decade or so, racking up a long string of releases on some of the most respected house labels in the game, it's fair to say anticipation for the album will be high, so naturally they've called in some high-profile buddies to help out on remix duties.
What you end up with are three rubs that are all really quite distinct. In its Original form, Deep Africa is exactly the kind of rolling Afro-house groove you're probably already thinking of, with filtered, chant-style vox, organic-sounding percussion and the kind of classy, accomplished production we've come to expect on from Lawton. Somewhat ironically, perhaps, Matt Prehn – a stalwart of the South African scene pretty much since it got going – then supplies a chunky, chuggy remix that tones down the more overtly 'Afro' elements and has both a slightly techier edge and hints of disco, before the EP's completed by a mix from Sen-Sei & Stranger Danger that takes us into smoother, dreamier deep house territory, with a jazzy feel but still packing plenty of low-end punch.
The latter rub takes the gold for me but there's not a duff mix in sight – deep house lovers of many persuasions would do well to check this one out.
Words: Russell Deeks
Release date: Out now
Review Score: 8