Oslo's hWah serves up three classic US-style cuts that'll delight the more specialist floors
Given that Marc Cotterell's excellent Plastik People imprint has been known, on occasion, to license and re-release classic deep house and garage nuggets from days gone by, I actually had to check to make sure this three-track EP from Norwegian producer hWah wasn't one of them. If there's a finer compliment to pay the traditional US-style grooves contained herein, I certainly can't think what it is right now!
Body Talkin' is up first, a raw, New Jersey-style garage cut with a one-line male vocal ("I feel your body talking") that could've been lifted straight off an early 90s Strobe or Movin' Records release. The beats go skippity-skip and a fluid bassline propels the groove along without getting all up in your face, as flutes flutter, saxophones wail and pianos tinkle on top, all tied together with some lovely old-skool synth washes. Soulful and melodic yet with plenty of dancefloor energy, they've chosen the lead track well here.
That said, the other two cuts aren't too shoddy either. N'Don't U Know is another male-vocalled number, but it's a housier proposition than the title track, with driving 4/4s and synth chords/stabs that are highly redolent of early 90s Italo-house, as well as more of the flittery, fluttery, bird-like sounds found on Body Talkin'. Completing the EP is My Love, a pacier cut that comes on like the very earliest stirrings - round about 1994/95 - of what would eventually become 'UK garage' a few years later. Think early Tuff Jam or Joey Musaphia productions and you're somewhere in the ballpark.
None of these tracks, let's be honest, are going to have anything like the impact of the latest Diynamic or Hot Creations release - and you're certainly not going to hearing them at Electric Daisy Carnival or any other mass-market dance/EDM event. But in those more exclusive corners of clubland where the purist "house 'n' garage" faithful still gather, they'll go down a storm. And that's what Plastik People is all about...
Words: Russell Deeks
Release date: 7 April
Review Score: 8