kool vibe is part of a new mini-wave of house producers who like their 4/4 ruff and tuff. elements of the us garage that found fortune in 90s new jersey are also littered throughout his records – and those by brawther, tomska and more, with imprints like vibes & peppers and my love is underground seemingly leading the way in terms of releases. adding itself to that list is a new italian label, traxx underground, run by italians samann and washerman: this is the debut release and it bangs in all the right places. snares snapping in the wind, neon organ stabs and kicking kicks are the predominant characteristics here, with all sorts of “woos” and “yeahs” carefully deployed throughout to make each mini drop that bit more urgent.
‘kv’s groove’ shoves all those components into a loose, jazzy arrangement, where ‘be someone (kool mix)’ is more barrelling and tunnelled. distant tom patterns add a sense of tribalism with sparks of melody and warm chords keeping things nice and human. ‘i want it’ sounds like what jazz house specialist ludovic navarre aka st germain would if he brought out a new record (here’s hoping) for the way loose chords weave their way between more trilling ivories, darting basslines and skittish snares. the grooves and rhythms kool vibe creates are sort of patchwork in composition; lots of little snippets and phrases tacked next to and on top of each other. it’s dynamic and physical if nothing else. my favourite comes in the often over looked b2 slot: ‘open up baby’ burrows deep underground, dry claps help the charge and a cry of ‘b-baby’ disappears behind you over and over. it’s cool, dance-y and tough. though unarguably with at least one foot rooted firmly in house heritage, kool vibe roughs up a tried and template just enough here to make this an ep worth checking.