While the ongoing global pandemic means our chances to gather and dance beneath deep blue skies are likely to be limited, there’s never been a greater need for warm, positive and life-affirming music. NuNorthern Soul has decided to do its bit by offering up a brand new “Summer Selections” sampler that’s packed to the rafters with magical musical treats lifted from some of the label’s most potent forthcoming releases. Including tracks from Igor B, George Koutalieris, Chris Coco remixing Yggdrasil, Mike Salta and Mortale, label boss Phat Phil Cooper remixing Faint Waves and NuNorthern Soul regular BJ Smith, there’s a balearic gem inside for even the pickiest of listeners.
The EP begins with something rather special from Canadian producer Igor B: a gentle, sunrise-ready soundscape rich in languid hand percussion, bubbly synthesizer lines and glistening guitars. Entitled “Deep Breath”, the track is just one of the many highlights you’ll find on his forthcoming debut album, “Stranded Seaside”.
With its’ latest full-length release, NuNorthern Soul continues to champion soothing, seductive and sun-kissed sounds from producers on the up. “Stranded Seaside” is the most expansive release yet from label debutant Igor B, with its eight becalmed, colourful and fluid cuts offering a particularly languid and alluring take on nu-Balearica rich in enveloping ambient chords and global percussion sounds.
The Canadian producer is still in the formative stages of his career but has already delivered a handful of must-check releases. After debuting on Rocksteady Disco in 2018 with two dusty cuts shot through with clear Brazilian influences, Igor has appeared on hyped London label Church and established his own imprint, Breathing Room Records.
“Stranded Seaside” offers a wider exploration of the Canadian’s influences and inspirations than previous excursions, sashaying between warm and heady downtempo cuts – see the ambient bliss of “Southern Dawn”, “Secret Garden” and “Deep Breath”, as well as the new age-inspired percussion-based workout “Into The Wild” – and inspired moments of humid dancefloor warmth.
Even within this broad category Igor B displays much versatility. Compare and contrast the steel pan-led tropical grooves of “Tangerines” and the bassline-driven headiness of the track that follows, “King Island”, where thumping, restless drumbeats and acid-style low-end are peppered with woozy chords and impeccable, eyes-closed melodies. Or for that matter that breezy, percussion-heavy cheeriness of “Pelican’s Coif” and “Stranded Seaside”, an undeniably loved up, atmospheric and melodious affair whose kaleidoscopic, club-ready dreaminess recalls the halcyon days of the Italian ambient house movement.
Considered as a whole, Igor B’s first album-length excursion is not only impressively evocative and emotive, but also representative of his developing trademark sound. Expect big things in the months and years ahead.