Alex Arnout, late of Hot Creations and Crosstown Rebels, is throwing down thunderbolts from the high mountains on his Turquoise Blue imprint, and the label has reached some kind of apotheosis with the Sound-Byte EP. I mean that in the purest sense of the word – apotheosis (n): the ideal; exaltation to the divine – because when his career is finished sometime in the distant future, I’m not sure he’ll ever get much closer to God than in the modestly-titled track called “GiveU”. I’ve listened to the original mix at least a dozen times now, and I’m still picking it apart. Do you want something quotable? Okay: this is an unbelievably good deep house record.
The original mix has a floating bassline that draws as close to nirvana as I think music can take a fella, hitting the perfect pitch between a sound that’s man-made and machine-honed. Like a glorious gurgling engine, riffs churn out of painfully sharp percussion seemingly at random, with blurry, reverbed vocals smeared all over. There’s a long, slow, lugubrious build – this is indulgent to the point of obscenity, and that’s where the sweet spot lies. If you’re crouched over a computer, listening to 92kps MP3 samples then you need to stop now, because with something as wonderful as this, it just won’t do it justice.
I understand why people want remixes, I understand why labels release them, and I have nothing but respect for Gwen Maze and especially Jef K, but I’m gonna have to double down on the original here. Remove one chord, add one drum and you’re lost.