ANDY VAZ feat. Eva Soul
Tragedy Park, a Drivetrain EP by DJ-producer and Soiree Records International head Derrick Thompson, appeared on Andy Vaz's Yore imprint in 2009, and now Thompson returns the favour by issuing a three-track EP featuring Vaz's own “Feelin'” original (from his superb 2011 full-length Straight Vacationing) and choice remixes by Drivetrain and Norm Tally. Drivetrain's fabulous “Reflection” version is up first and is, to these ears, the EP's standout. Thompson strips away much of Eva Soul's sultry vocalizing on the original to instead shine the spotlight on a tight and exuberantly jacking house strut. Clubby and soulful in the extreme, Drivetrain's instant classic works up a heady lather in its tripped-out mix of synth smears, vocal snippets and exhalations, and unstoppable electro blaze. Vaz's original hardly suffers by comparison, as it's a sumptuous ride in its own right. More laid-back than the opener, Vaz strikes a luscious balance between the singer's rapturous exclamations and the multi-layered, hard-grooving background, and what results is six minutes of breezy synthetic-soul splendour. The longest of the three tracks, Tally's nine-minute mix catches one's ears with its shaker percussion and bold, off-beat punctuations but ultimately ends up being a tad less satisfying than its brethren for being too repetitive and lacking the kind of dramatic development heard in the others. Even so, the Drivetrain version alone makes the release worthy of recommendation.