label:CLAREMONT 56(UK)


A:Sandbar Caviar
B:Inland Island


As Claremont 56 continues to celebrate its first decade, founder Paul Murphyremains on the look out for talented producers to add to the label’s slowlyexpanding family of artists. The imprint’s latest debutant, Blair French, is hardly anewcomer to music production, though, having put out his first release – under theDial81 alias – this time 10 years ago. French is something of a musical chameleon. Over the years, he’s been a member ofnumerous musical collectives – most notably Cosmic Handshakes and FormlessFigures – established his own well-regarded DIY record label (Fat Finger Cosmic) anddelivered material on imprints including Delsin, M1 Sessions and, most recently,Rocksteady Disco (the deep and jazzy Afro-house brilliance, S tanding Still Is AnIllusion). The Detroit based musician, producer and graphic designer is also notoriouslydifficult to pin down. Trawl through his releases and you’ll come across blissfulambience, experimental hip-hop, skewed techno, hazy deep house, beach-friendlyBalearica, neo-classical, an award-winning film score (documentary Detropia) andeven a dash of bassbin-bothering grime. On his first Claremont 56 10", French is in full-on, head-in-the-clouds,feet-on-the-sand mode. The A-side boasts the soft-spun delight that is “SandbarCaviar”, a gently undulating exercise in aural bliss built around sparse drum machinehits, pitched-down Balearic disco aesthetics – think bubbly bass and humid flashes ofAfro-influenced guitars – and the kind of fluttering synthesizer melodies that wouldonce have been described as “new age” in tone. The sticky, tropical-tinged humidity continues on the flip, where “Inland Island”showcases French’s love of dub disco bass, atmospheric field recordings,bongo-laden South American rhythms and the kind of hazy, tactile vocals thatseemingly drift between the speakers on a cloud of pungent marijuana smoke. It’s anintoxicating and loved-up experience; you can dance if you want to, but it soundsjust as good if you’re lying flat on your back.

A:Sandbar Caviar

B:Inland Island
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