At first glance, Times Are Ruff, (soundcloud & facebook), may look like an outlet for the production outfit of the same name to get their music out there, but there are a handful of releases by other high calibre artists such as Larry DeKat and Awanto 3. The label has a knack of putting out limited cuts of sample heavy house music that is both in high demand and of high quality. Last years ‘Double D’s’ from the Just Checking The Walls EP is a sublime cut and a perfect example of the type of house music we have come to expect from them.
What we have here is the 2nd EP on Times Are Ruff by the man they call Junktion (soundcloud & facebook). As one half of the production duo Fouk alongside Daniel Leseman, he has released on labels like Heist, Razor-N-Tape and under his own name, Sleazy Beats, Rose and Slow Town. As a fan, I look out for everything Junktion, Fouk and Outplay related so when this release was announced, I was like a kid at Christmas.
Todays Premiere is the Times Are Ruff remix of the track Baby I Need. Remixes are such a hard thing to approach, especially when faced with an original by an artist with such a defined sound like Junktion. The beats on this remind me of one of my favourite Phife Dawg lyrics ‘I like my beats hard like 2 day old shit’. A pounding 909 kick drum and snare + clap combo ensure maximum dance floor presence. The track is centred around the funkiest guitar lick, spinning from ear to ear. Layers of lush rhodes chords build with the percussion to create what is a simmering, funk-laden piece of house music. A short respite from the beats sees long and flowing pads behind a filtered drum loop, all the time with that infectious guitar burrowing into your sub-conscious. Times Are Ruff have done a superb job of flipping the original into a brooding funk stomper. The 12” will be out mid April, grab at Juno & Decks.