My ear was first caught by Paul Revered at a Hipnosis loft party earlier this year. Listening to him weave together the new throwback and warehouse sound (currently permeating Toronto’s underground after-hours Deep House scene) and the older styles of House and Detroit techno opened my eyes to the local demand for this type of jam. The mature crowd knew their House music and the vibe was amazing. Dancing and chatting with old friends and new acquaintances at the party, the night flew by amidst a gathering of smiling, friendly strangers all grooving to a sound of House that first flexed itself back in the late 80s and early 90s.
Paul, a Toronto-based producer with releases on Soul Shift Music, recently began djing about 3 years ago due to “selfish reasons.” During our interview he explained, “It’s kind of a selfish thing that made me want to DJ. There was a type of music I like that I didn’t hear anyone playing.” For those of you unfamiliar with Paul and the sound of the Hipnosis crew that he runs with, that type of music is Deep House.
Inspired by DJs like Paul E Lopes, Jason Palma, and Man Called Warwick among others, Paul’s DJ sets and production work also nod to the sounds of House legends like Larry Levan, Frankie Knuckles and Ron Hardy. But, he’s quick to add, “I’m rarely listening to just House music…I’m listening to Disco, Funk, Soul, Boogie and Hip Hop and trying to explore every nook and cranny of those [genres].”
However, his drive to produce didn’t come about trying to replicate the “esoteric” connections he had with the vintage sounds of yesteryear.
Rather, he was motivated by an aesthetic reaction to the popular sound of Electro House that dominated the Toronto electronic music scene in the mid to late 2000s.
Adopting the buzzsaw excesses of Blog-driven Electro House, he and “a buddy started a group called Pseudonympho and we made a few tracks with chainsaw basslines and sawtooth ‘this’ and big farty bass lines ‘that’ with rapping and stuff.” Basically, he says, “I did it to take the piss out of Electro music.” Although the group wasn’t meant to last, it oriented Paul to the world of production.
While his current solo productions are more House oriented, he is also working with Persian female rapper Sya Sky on a new demo track. He was first introduced to Sya through the “network of Persian hipsters.” Rapping in Farsi and critical of the Iranian government, Sya is part of a new generation of Persian music in which Paul wished to play a part as her producer.
The set below offers insight into Paul’s sonic palette and sounds like vintage, quirky, deep and techy House for a mature crowd who are familiar with the history of the genre. Dubby elements reflect against detuned pads and piano chords with wailing sax and plenty of reverb on the vocals. This music doesn’t command attention, rather it steadily entices, hypnotizes and draws you in to the dark throbbing pulse of classic House.
In the second part of the mix, Paul goes way back to the time of Soul and Disco before transitioning to contemporary Deep House and finishing with the classic sound of Larry Heard.
MK – Burning (Vibe mix)
Michael McLardy – Deep Nothing
Joss Moog – That Old Feeling
Dubtribe – Corster
Gabe Slick – Old Records
Moodyman – 4meandnjb
Secret Ingredients – Chicago Chicago
Shatrax – Champagne Dancer
Love Birds – The Beast
Darou – Yeah Yeah
Brawther – Do it Yourself
Dominic Martin – Homage New Jersey
Microform – Game On
Abacus – We Cooking Now
Eddie Kendricks – Date with the Rain
George McCrae – I Get Lifted
Donald Byrd – Wind Parade
Gwen McCrae – All this Love
David Joseph – You Can’t Hide Your Love
Rayko – Getting Down (Billy Ocean – Nights)
Kasso – One More Round
Motor City Drum Ensemble – Raw Cuts #3
Herbert – Going Round
Crystal Waters – Gypsy Woman (dub)
Larry Heard – Black Paint