V/A comps on most labels have become dreary affairs, more often representing split costs and horse trading rather than an aesthetic statement or sneak peak into the future. Most labels aren’t Hudd Traxx, though, the strangely resilient Huddersfield imprint run by Eddie Leader which has consistently pushed quality house and techno of varying stripes for 15 years.
Hudd is also doing a retrospective in a delightfully “wrong” way and in doing so has actually made a compilation so interesting you’re going to want to buy two copies rather than none. 15 Years of Hudd Trax: Here And Now is a two part release that actually features new music contributed by friends, family and admirers of label that has never been heard before, featuring scene legends Nightmares On Wax, Jovonn and JT Donaldson, label stalwarts Iron Curtis and Agnès and even a few producers making their Hudd Traxx debut.
Black Loops leads off with “Forster Funk,” an energetic basement groover that working deep house DJs will get a lot of mileage from. Nightmares On Wax contributes the off-the-wall “Authorpe Road,” a bass-lovers delight that marshals every dark art of compositional voodoo to make a fairly restrained and understated track into a sound system anthem — in the best sense of the term.
Jovonn raises the flag for dancefloor-driven deep house on “The Avenue Brooklyn Sound,” rocking that Korg M1 Organ 2 patch the way that only he can. There’s a distinctly throwback sound with the Voice of God (in this case, Jovonn himself) chanting “House…. Bring It Up… Uh huh… Let’s Go…” On any other record this would be worth the price and shipping and handling fees alone. Eddie Leader closes Part 1 with the blazing, hypnotic “Fade Away,” which does anything but.
Part 2 opens with JT Donaldson, a man of musical multitudes, with a slapping, clapping deep jam called “What I Got.” Mark Hawkins (formerly Marquis Hawkes, and before that… Mark Hawkins) contributes the soulful and quite beautiful “Chasing Paper.” Two mainstays from Hudd Traxx’s flourishing early 2010s period, Iron Curtis and Agnès, close out the vinyl collection with the homage to the master “Kerri On (Chandelier Dub)” and “Embryonic Connections” respectively.
A couple of digital bonus tracks showcase two entirely new additions to the Hudd Traxx circle, DFRA on the chopped up “Candelaria” and No Different on a track dripping with the residue of early Detroit techno on “Nobody Thought.”
These 10 tracks “perfectly instill why Hudd started this label of love 15 years ago; to showcase fierce, uncompromising dancefloor workouts in as sincere and stylish manner as possible.” Eddie Leader is the best judge of it, and that seems right. The label has never been slavishly chained to one particular sound nor any particular producer or clique. They’ve released records from prominent figures and unearthed new talent and given them a platform to shine. What more do you want?
V/A: 15 Years Of Hudd Traxx: Here & Now Parts 1 & 2 (Hudd Traxx / May-June 2021 / 12″ Vinyl/Digital)
15 Years Of Hudd Traxx “Here & Now” Part 1:
Black Loops – Forster Funk
Nightmares On Wax – Authorpe Road
Jovonn – The Avenue Brooklyn Bounce
Eddie Leader – Fade Away
15 Years Of Hudd Traxx “Here & Now” Part 2:
JT Donaldson – What I Got
Mark Hawkins – Chasing Paper
Iron Curtis – Kerri On (Chandelier Dub)
Agnès – Embryonic Connections
(All above tracks Except Nightmares On Wax – Authorpe Road (Vinyl Only))
DFRA – Candelaria
No Different – Nobody Thought
⚪️ Disclosure Statement: This record was submitted as a promo on behalf of the label.