Juan Deminicis – Strange (Moonchild Records)

The 30th release on Costa Rica’s Moonchild Records is out this week and it sees Juan Deminicis making his first appearance on the label. The Argentinean producer is fresh off his EP on Guy J’s ‘Found’ imprint along with a remix of Funk D’Void on Lost & Found. Juan’s debut single for Moonchild is entitled ‘Strange’ and it comes with remixes from Dale Middleton and Javier Portilla & Sotela.

Unlike some producer’s Juan’s production hallmarks aren’t always that recognizable. His tracks tend to vary quite a bit and that’s why I always look forward to listening to his music. For as varied as they are at times they are always excellent and even though he’s reached a pretty elite level you can still hear him evolving from production to production. ‘Strange’ is an exceptional track and one of my favourites of Juan’s this year actually. It’s irresistibly groovy and the sequence of lead bass tones is absolutely sensational. Add to that a uniquely soulful vocal and you’ve got a production that just grows on you with each successive listen.

The first remix on the project is supplied by Dale Middleton who is also making his first appearance on Moonchild. Some of the most impressive signings of Dale’s career have come this year, most notably on Solee’s Parquet Recordings imprint and his interpretation of ‘Strange’ shines here as well. Dale has reworked the strong themes from the original over a delicate and more fluid sounding groove for what results in a contemporary hypno vibe that’s still rich in musicality. The smoothness of Dale’s productions can’t be overstated and that’s likely a major reason why so many DJs are drawn to his sound. There’s a maturity about his work that most producers are sorely lacking and it’s really evident on his remix here once again.

The second and final remix on the release is provided by Javier Portilla & Sotela. The Costa Rican duo are the brains behind Moonchild Records and are also active on many musical levels in their home country. Their interpretation of ‘Strange’ is my favourite version on the release with the original being a close second. Javier & Sotela have slowed the tempo down just a touch and reinvented the vocals and lead over a spacious but still moderately trippy sounding groove. There’s an added bit of character on the bass tones and the strong rhythms which carry the track through its second half climax are damn cool. Wicked remix from Javier and Sotela and an all round great release for Moonchild Records once again.

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