Any new record company that describes itself as combining the best of the “old school values,” with “new school digital thinking,” has gotten my attention. Not only that, but it’s gotten my respect. All too often, in music, the past is dispensed with way to freely and quickly. It’s discarded like yesterday’s newspapers. That’s wrong. If you think about it, without the past we wouldn’t have gotten here? Think about it logically, without disco, house wouldn’t exist. Similarly, without all these sixties and seventies soul, jazz and funk albums, would hip hop have ever have been invented? So the past got us to where we are now. So for a new label to not only respect the past, but incorporate into its way of music is quite refreshing. That’s what San Francisco’s Handmade Records have done. This must be working, because they’ll soon release their eight release, Jay and Mendoza’s Fantasy, which I’ll now tell you about.

Fantasy is the second collaboration between Billy Jaz and Eduardo Mendoza. Jaz and Mendoza are a production duo based in San Francisco. Great things are forecasted from Jaz and Mendoza. It seems, not only they looking to be going places, but do so quickly. From the opening bars of this slice of funky house you just know something special is unfolding. Hesitant becomes moody and then melodic. A broody vocal flits in while pounding drums drive the arrangement along. Warm washes of melodic keyboards, bursts of urgent, teasing vocals and a moody synths then join. Each play their part as the drama builds. The broody vocal briefly rejoins, while crunchy drums help build the drama. Soon, you realise this a quality slice of funky house. Not only that, but it’s infectiously catchy, melodic where hooks certainly haven’t been rationed. 

On what we used to refer to as A-Side of Fantasy, is the original mix and flip it over, so to speak, and you can hear the Jay Tripwire Remix. This means double helpings of Fantasy, albeit with a twist, that reinterprets this delicious slice of funky house.

Although Fantasy is only Jaz and Mendoza’s second collaboration, I’m sure they’ll be looking to grow their back-catalogue in 2013. They’ve put their considerable experience and talents to good use, proving that two heads have double the chance of filling and rocking dance-floors. Given how good Fantasy is, they’ll be continuing to fill and rock dance-floors, but much further afield than San Francisco. 


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