Progressive House Reviews

Nevee – Steel And Stone (3rd Avenue)

As 2012 was nearing its conclusion Dominique Heyninck’s (aka Madloch) Sound Avenue imprint had broadened its musical scope considerably. Ultimately this led to the creation of 3rd Avenue which has now become one of the premier outlets for a more pure progressive house sound. Dominique seems to have an uncanny knack for sourcing out some of the most intriguing, undiscovered talent that the world has to offer. The labels 11th release features the debut of up and coming Canadian producer Nevee. Her first single for 3rd Avenue is entitled ‘Steel And Stone’ which comes with remixes from: Mehmet Akar and Beat Syndrome.

After earning a bachelor’s degree in electroacoustic studies from Concordia University Nevee has continued to put her passion into electronic music and it really shows with ‘Steel And Stone’ The composition is immediately striking with its brooding techno sensibility and contemporary outlook. The rolling electronics create a vivacious foundation which sets the perfect backdrop for the introduction of her incredible voice. It’s rare that you’ll hear vocals with such depth in the electronic music underground but enchanting, inviting and sultry are all words that come to mind here. The incredible character and grit that sits at the foundation is the ideal contrast for her pristine sounding vocals and melancholic musical themes. It’s an emotionally gripping piece and one that more than affirms Nevee’s bright future in electronic music.

The first remix is supplied by Mehmet Akar who is making his first appearance on 3rd Avenue but fifth overall on the Sound Avenue label collective. With the third quarter of 2013 now underway the Turkish producer has continued his strong studio work on Mirabilis, Agara and Baroque. For his ‘Steel And Stone’ interpretation Mehmet has crafted a groovy foundation which maintains the theme of the original very well but adds a considerably larger dance floor presence. Like a true studio veteran Mehmet has reworked Nevee’s vocals into a sonic spectacle with a wealth of cool gates and effects. Void of any large drop the intricate techno framework keeps things cool and contemporary allowing the vocal elements to shine and the energy locked on the dance floor.

The second and final remix is provided by Beat Syndrome who is making his first appearance on 3rd Avenue but 13th overall on the Sound Avenue label collective. Hamed Safi’s Beat Syndrome alias has taken a decidedly more musical approach in recent months. The exquisite ‘In Your Shadow’ released just two weeks ago furthered a more harmonic sound from Hamed’s studio and the electronic music underground has chimed in heralding it as his best work to date. Beat Syndrome’s ‘Steel And Stone’ interpretation begins to take shape after a warm, hypnotic intro. A tough, driving groove drops in and instantly the piece is charged with an electric energy. Mesmerizing rhythms and captivating chord changes push the momentum to new heights. This serves as the ultimate tension builder before Nevee’s vocal drops in and delivers a moment of both exhilaration and relief. With the groove still charging and the vocal elements now weaving their magic Beat Syndrome brings some new musical themes to fruition which sees the Canadian producer perhaps stretching his sound even further. Following a gorgeously crafted break we are graced with Beat Syndrome’s most grandiose production sequence to date. The exhilarating climax takes the piece higher with epic lines that shimmer with emotion and Nevee’s heart wrenching vocals hitting all the right senses.

Beat Syndrome has also provided a downtempo radio edit which further showcases the Canadian producer’s ever growing studio chops. Backed by a shifty underbelly the glitchy electronics really come to life as the rolling beats propel the piece forward. A wide array of heavenly gates combined with the full vocal complement and enchanting melancholic themes makes for a subversive journey that puts a perfect cap on another brilliant release from 3rd Avenue.

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