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Michael & Levan and Stiven Rivic – Sabotage (Kunai Records)

The 11th release on Kunai Records finds Michael & Levan and Stiven Rivic returning for a brand new single.

Michael & Levan and Stiven Rivic

The Kunai bosses are enjoying what is perhaps the most fruitful time in their career. With forthcoming releases signed to Sudbeat, Replug, Tulipa and more this is a production trio certainly on the rise. Michael, Levan and Stiven now present their latest studio creation entitled ‘Sabotage’ alongside remixes from Lutzenkirchen, Hot TuneiK and SQL.

The release gets underway with the original mix which finds Michael, Levan and Stiven crafting a gorgeous slice of deep techno. Anchored by a smooth, pulsating groove it’s sultry, contoured waves are irresistible. Indistinct atmospheres and phasing motifs intertwine for a wonderful psychedelic sound collage. Trailing effects along with tonal hooks fill the air and eventually initiate the main break. With the kick keeping the groove locked, the indistinct motifs gradually decay for a powerful return and equally groovy finale. A wondrous production from Michael, Levan and Stiven which may be one of their most diverse this year.

The first interpretation of ‘Sabotage’ is provided by Lutzenkirchen who is making his first appearance on Kunai Records. Tobias Lützenkirchen aka Lützenkirchen hails from Germany and his unique take on tech and deep house has found a home on Blufin, Great Stuff Recordings and Baroque Records. For his ‘Sabotage’ interpretation Lützenkirchen has injected some of his trademark funk into the framework while adding an energetic, percussive flair. Indistinct vocal stabs lock down the groove just before the bass line drops and from there the track goes on a smooth and exhilarating journey. Long gaseous sweeps combined with offset bass tones initiate the breakdown, before a barrage of effects builds tension and the warm, driving groove drops back in for a great moment. Lützenkirchen has also provided a ‘Deep Dub’ which strips the framework down a touch and focuses on a reworked bass line which emanates a funkier sensibility, add to that a shimmering main break which might be the tracks shining moment. Two solid versions from Lützenkirchen which will certainly do damage on the appropriate floors.

The second interpretation of ‘Sabotage’ is provided by Hot TuneiK who is making his first appearance on Kunai Records. The Mexican artist has quickly become one of his country’s most recognizable progressive house producers. Introduced to electronic music through artists like Paul Van Dyk, Hot TuneiK eventually discovered Sasha and Digweed, and not long after Guy J which changed his musical taste pretty quickly. Now immersed in Mexico’s electronic music culture Hot works with the infamous Hookah group and also heads up their new digital imprint. His productions have grown leaps and bounds this year and he’s delivered a beauty for his ‘Sabotage’ interpretation. In going with a deep and dreamy approach the Mexican’s groove crafting skills become very apparent early. Wicked slabs of bass roll off each other perfectly for a well shaped foundation, while knocky stabs and a wave of hypnotic synths carry the track into the break. The serene interlude flows through a delicate, buzzy haze before warm bass swells present a subtle melodic theme which runs through an exhilarating third act conclusion. Excellent remix from Hot TuneiK.

The third interpretation of ‘Sabotage’ is provided by SQL who is also making his debut on Kunai Records. Amsterdam-based Pim van Horssen aka SQL has a very impressive discography with appearances on Chameleon Recordings, Traum and Outpost Recordings all in the last six months’ Add to that a busy gig schedule, particularly during the festival season and SQL remains one of the most in demand remixers. His ultra polished style is undeniably Dutch in nature and it’s certainly worked wonders on the ‘Sabotage’ themes. A wealth of bleepy motifs combined with rough beats and a smooth, exhilarating build all perfectly wrapped up in a techno state of mind, makes for a mix not only worthy for the dance floor but also your mind. Outstanding remix from SQL and perhaps the best Kunai Records release date. Highly Recommended.

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