Tosca - Birthday (Grant Phabao Remix)
Tosca - Pony - No Hassle Versions
(CD/Digital) G-Stone Recordings, 2010-03-26
Tosca - Birthday [Grant Phabao Version] by WetPaper.ro
01. Springer (Smith & Mudd Version) (5:12)
02. Birthday (Grant Phabao Version) (5:41)
03. My First (Nicola Conte Version) (5:04)
04. Elitsa (Kotey Extra Band Disco Version) (6:27)
05. Rosa (Rodney Hunter Version) (6:56)
06. Elektra Bregenz (Bottin's Disco Spritzer Mix) (5:21)
07. Joe Si Ha (Spirit Catcher Version) (7:04)
08. Joe Si Ha (Reverso 68 Version) (5:52)
09. Oysters In May (Kalabrese Version) (5:33)
10. Rosa (K&K Streichquartett Version) (3:56)
Press Release :
If you’re looking for the meaning of it all, better not try to decode this record: "Somewhat absurd... like, Pony", says Richard Dorfmeister about the conceptual side of "Pony - No Hassle Versions". No meaning might have a meaning here. A certain lack of meaningfulness describes the nature of Tosca pretty well; on their equine record even more so.
Releasing an album of remixes of their most recent work stays in tradition with the Tosca modus operandi. There's been at least one remix album for each 'original' Tosca album to date. In the case of "No Hassle", Tosca’s 2009 longplayer, this might make even more sense than before, since "No Hassle" was an introspective work. "Pony" brings the more club-oriented face of Tosca to the forefront. To put it simply, Tosca, the project of the two Austrians, Richard Dofmeister and Rupert Huber, combines bass-heavy downbeat music with abstract soundscapes of found sounds and material from numerous studio sessions. When these recordings are handed over to remixers, everything changes; texture, dynamics, structures. Still, "Pony" is a true Tosca album; the sound signature of Dorfmeister and Huber cannot be superseded by a remix.
Let’s take a look at the remixers. Smith & Mudd, Steve Kotey and Pete Herbert are three London-based producers, whose musical credit-lines reach back to the 90's. Paul "Mudd" Murphy (with partner Ben Smith) delivers a 'classic downbeat' --what's called 'Balearic' these days --production of "Pony"’s opening track; but not the superficial kind that has given the genre a bad name. "Rather brilliantly subtle, like early Fila Brazillia", as Richard Dorfmeister states. Aimed straight for the dancefloor are Pete Herbert’s "Joe Si Ha (Reverso 68 Mix)" and Steve Koteys collaboration with brothers Lee on their "Elitsa" remix. All three versions share a musical heritage that points to the sound of London dance-archetypes such as the Idjut Boys or Faze Action. And of course there’s a connection to the various former acts and aliases of the remixers themselves: Bushflange, Chicken Lips or Akwaaba for example Clubmusic history lurks around each corner... Quite similar in sound to the London heads is Venetian remixer Bottin. His "Disco Spritzer" remix of "Elektra Bregenz" is, despite its name, more hip-swaying longdrink than appetizer. And Kalabrese, who, being from Zurich, would call that an Apéro, has made his "Oysters In May" into anything but a mere starter. This is more like a main course á la Henrik Schwarz, including some additional vocals from the young dj himself. Grant Phabao is a Parisian dj- and producer-legend, ever since first droppping his frenchified Rubba-Dub styles on the Pro-Zak Trax Label at the end of the 90's. When he's not doing Reggae takes on Tosca, he's busy mixing some riddims with the latest Q-Tip or the likes. His version of "Birthday" sounds like something hot off the press from Compass Point Studios in Nassau.
If you ask Nicola Conte for a remix, what you'll get is a proper re-interpretation of your music. While others would try to evoke such via sampling, the man from Bari takes his crew of handpicked musicians into the studio for a new recording. His jazzy reconstructions are always refreshingly unique like a custom fitted Italian suit. Rodney Hunter is a veteran member of the G-Stone family. His suprising version of "Rosa" is fairly soundtrack-ish. No looking for the perfect Disco beat this time, none of his trademark Rave/Funk groove workouts. The public get's to see another face of the the man who sometimes sounds like he's a lost member of the Stereo Mc's. The "Spirit Catcher Mix" by Belgians Jean Vanesse and Thomas Sohet of Tosca's "Joe Si Ha" is designed to be danced to and leaves nothing left to be desired. The Spirit Catcher sound is a sure bet - as long as you dig their electronic Disco / House take of course. To close the album, Tosca went a bit experimental. Besides giving their music to a handful of remixers, they also contracted a contemporary chamber music ensemble to record an adaptation of "Rosa". The two Tosca producers then took these recordings and re-edited them, resulting in a closing track by the Kuk String Quartet.
If, after listening to this elegantly sequenced collection of remixes and versions, you still long for a deeper meaning, take a good look at Markus Roessle’s horse photography. If, after that, you’re still filled with a desire for deeper meaning, you’re probably making too much of a hassle. Understand that Tosca is about 'the meaning of no meaning'. Free your mind and your pony will follow.