Probably about 10 years ago, Mark Farina told me about a theory he had about the nature of dance music, or at least how it is in the underground. It would take a few years, sometimes it would be a bit unrecognizable but every genre had its day and would have its day again. It wasn’t feelings of nostalgia or a retro revival driving it, but just the cyclical nature of the scene itself. DJs are competitive, forever looking to add a record or series of records no one else has and stay a step ahead of the charts. Producers want to push the envelope and reach into the past to neglected sounds that have fallen out of fashion. Sometimes – this was the case of disco as well as ’90s deep house – wonderful music gets buried under an avalanche of trash and it takes the perspective of time to separate the trash from the treasure.
So we see with a soulful (or maybe better said, more “musical”) sound which dominated a certain part of the scene in the early- to mid-’00s is echoed in quite a few new records I’ve been hearing from erstwhile deep house producers, capturing the soul and spirit of some of the best of that scene without decaying into a loungey sleepy vibe that characterized the worst.
Alex Agore’s new LP, Perspective, is certainly indicative of this. Alex Agore has always been too isolated from his peers to be personally part of any general trend, I think, but whether he’s consciously searched these grounds for new inspiration or not, there’s been a seismic shift in his approach to making music. “Conversation” leads off with some beautiful chords and a latin-esque shuffle and what seem to be the first traces of live instruments appearing in his music. The Afro-Latin influence is powerfully woven throughout this album, succumbing to the smooth jazz of “Hideaway” and “Secrets.”
This is going to shake up a lot of fans of Agore’s previous work. It doesn’t feel like a completely realized vision, but rather a prospective direction, a trailhead into the unfamiliar territories and places unknown.
Alex Agore: Perspective (Closer To Truth)
1. Alex Agore: Conversation
2. Alex Agore: Drums Of The Valley
3. Alex Agore: Forgotten Memories
4. Alex Agore: Hideaway
5. Alex Agore: Illustration
6. Alex Agore: In The Zone
7. Alex Agore: Onça
8. Alex Agore: Perspective
9. Alex Agore: Secrets
10. Alex Agore: Message – Feat. Verodna