Seeing as this is the last Friday Night Tune of the year I thought I would do it slightly differently and play my favourite tune of 2014. I’ve heard a lot of tunes this year, we all have, and if I were to base something like this on purely technical or statistical information – such as amount of plays or something equally thrilling – we’d have ended up with an 8 bar loop of 150 BMP acid techno I did in Ableton one night when I was in a mood about something. And none of us wants that.
The fact is I don’t think I could do a top ten or 5 or whatever without some serious consideration and work. There have been a few stand outs, tunes which I have listened to far more often than I possibly expected to. Waltz from Dario Zenker’s ‘Morsin’ EP on Trilogy tapes was fairly rinsed around these parts, as was Buzzsaw by DJ Spider and Franklin De Costa. Person Of Interest’s Side Serena on his Russian Torrents release, Impressions by Zemi 17 on The Bunker NY and TX Connect’s Cheetah Blades from his ‘Real TX Jaxx’ EP on Bad Mums all did the business too, as did another hundred which came and went throughout the year.
A.A.S (Nite and Day mix) by Denis Sulta on Dixon Avenue Basement Jams wasn’t even a tune I’d heard in its entirety until a few weeks ago, but after that first listen it began nagging at me. In a year where the trends in house were towards more frayed edges, more scuff or full immersion in a retro sound of your choosing I think what got me about A.A.S was the fact it was one of the very purest of house tunes I’ve heard in a long, long while. Quite a lot of house these days is ever more abstract or detached – a sonic form of post modernism but this is a different breed. What marks A.A.S out from the pack is that it shines with an emotional energy that should always be present in house music but often isn’t. Critics could claim that it is maybe too in thrall to a particular time, a particular place. But that is missing the point. It’s isn’t so much the sounds of the tune that catches but the echo of darkness at its heart which is something all the very best house tunes carry with them. It doesn’t reinvent the genre, it doesn’t seem to fit with either the grubby, knackered house posse, nor the over-precise retro brigade but it brings back an atmosphere that had really began to vanish. A stormy, sultry tune that should be wrecking havoc everywhere. My favourite of 2014: A.A.S (Nite and Day mix) by Denis Sulta.