For his second release on the label this year, Culprit welcome jozif and his ‘Standard Rising’ EP. Sharing the former’s anticipation and buzz, ‘Standard Rising’ is the middle installment in the LA-based imprint’s anthemic summer trilogy. Exuberant and profoundly catchy the EP is bursting with fresh ideas that are uniquely jozif and perfectly matched to Culprit’s forward moving sound.
‘Standard Rising’ forms a fascinating companion to jozif’s first full Culprit EP, ‘The Lady B.’ While bound by the same sonic ethos, the two releases showcase the artist’s and the label’s two harmonious and complimentary sides: ‘The Lady B’s’ wistful and intensely personal musicality and ‘Standard Rising’s unbounded joy and e sweep. Culprit’s commitment to creating a catalogue that appeals as both listening and dance-floor, moving experiences of personality and depth are represented by an artist who is fast becoming of one the label’s producers-in-residence.
Titular track is a special one for Culprit, having been written specifically for jozif’s return appearance for the label’s signature party, Culprit Sessions at The Standard Hotel rooftop in LA. The song is a perfect and timeless encapsulation of this party series’ feeling, crackling with irresistible melodic elements, deep sub-bass, all peaking with a vocal hook that will leave no summer dance-floor safe from it’s blissful bombast.
‘Guitar Player’, a favourite of the Culprit clan’s, is all live drums and bassline, swelling strings, staccato piano riff and wah-wah guitar driving a spoken word sample that could have been picked only by jozif. jozif’s sense of dynamic is flawless, yet again.
‘Benny Benjamin’ is the modern disco piece par excellence, with a Stax soul-style orchestra of one, combining an incredibly rich palette of instrumental elements blending into that singular bit of music that could have been created at any point in the dance music’s four decade continuum but being unmistakably jozif – and Culprit.
Rounding off the release is a much welcomed label debut of Djebali, part of a long-term brotherly relationship between Culprit and the former Freak n’Chic clan. Djebali brings his trademark old-school house verve to ‘Benny Benjamin,’ led by the pulsating deep bassline, perfect percussive groove and subtle organ keys. The remix compliments this strong release with impeccable taste and execution.
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