It's only the second release (and the first vinyl outing) from Milton Keynes label Tahanen
Some of you may know Lee Clarke from his Chicago House FM show, his Milton Keynes club night Good Music, Great People, or his previous releases on Savoir Faire and Large. But what we have here is the second-ever release from his own Tahanan imprint - and the first to be available on vinyl - and if you're a deep house lover, then you should find something to satisfy no matter what your preferred sub-flavour.
In its Original form, Mikio Kenzo is a dancefloor groover in that traditional DiY/Smokescreen style whose defining characteristic is a wobbly, muffled keyboard line that sounds like it's being played on an old Walkman whose batteries are running out (which for younger readers means it speeds up and slows down disconcertingly), while some hefty, almost UKG-ish bass drops do their best to loosen your sphincter muscles below. There are some barely-there vocal snips, too, but James Benedict makes much more use of those on his bumpin', organ-enhanced, garage-y (as in the New Jersey kind) pass, while The Wheel Man opts for pounding, stuttery drums and cavernous, echo-y production on his techier rub. The EP's then completed by the second original, Mind Control, a more late-night deep house jam with indecipherable vocal bites, another fat, buzzy bassline and pads that don't stop.
Benedict's rub of the title track is the standout for me, but the quality's impressive throughout, making this an excellent way to get acquainted with a new label I hope to hear a lot more from.
Words: Russell Deeks
Release date: 15 July
Review Score: 8