I-Robots – Glamouflage EP
After being one of the many standouts on the ‘We Are Opilec…! Vol. III’ compilation back in 2016, I-Robots’ ‘Glamouflage’ is now getting a full vinyl release with artwork by Tomozo Kevorkian, who was designer for NYC’s Body & Soul, and remixes by a standout team of producers from Japan to Switzerland to South Africa and the USA.
Opening up the EP is a fantastic new Take II version from label boss I-Robots, who added exclusive Chinese vocal samples recorded on the streets of Huang Jiang City many years ago. The track is inspired by Ennio Morricone and Supermax and is a loose and infectious groove with brilliant drums and percussion and an elastic bassline that really gets you moving. It’s a subtle update to the original—also included here as a bonus cut—which itself is a steamy and tropical sounding groove.
Swiss electronic pioneer Schaltkreis Wassermann then features on a version of the original that reaches for the cosmos with its rugged bass riffs, tumbling toms and busy, ever evolving groove. It has a big breakdown with exotic synths wandering through the night and oodles of effects and big guitar licks. As one of the three bonus tracks, Wassermann also offers a brilliant remix that has acid twitches and psyched-out synth lines all weaving through the deep mid-tempo drums.
The first of the remixes comes from Kuniyuki Takahashi who has been a big supporter of I-Robots since 2000. He is a sound designer from Japan who had a compilation of his works put out by Music From Memory back in February. His version is laden with cosmic synths and chants, grunting and organic drums and is sure to be massive this summer thanks to its open air vibes.
Detroit’s underrated but vital Gary Martin is the boss of the Teknotika label and his version featuring Colten Decker playing an unusual sax line shows another side to the Motor City. It’s a curious and mysterious tune that makes for an unsettling atmosphere that keeps you locked throughout as it snakes along.
To accompany the original and Schaltkreis Wassermann remixes amongst the 3 bonus tracks we have a mix from Djembe Monks. Djembe Monks is a regular on Opilec Music and he shows the truly deep vibes of South Africa with his version, which sucks you deep into an enchanting groove. Afro percussion, chanting and sun-kissed xylophone sounds all bring the heat and make this another summer anthem in the making.
This is a fulsome package that brims with character and sunshine vibes and is sure to make its way into plenty of influential record bags this summer.
01 I-Robots – Glamouflage (Take II)
02 I-Robots – Glamouflage ft. Schaltkreis Wassermann
03 I-Robots – Glamouflage (Kuniyuki Takahashi Jungle Remix)
04 I-Robots – Glamouflage (Gary Martin Teknotika Remix ft.Colten Decker)
05 I-Robots – Glamouflage (Djembe Monks Remix) (digital bonus)
06 I-Robots – Glamouflage (Schaltkreis Wassermann Remix) (digital bonus)
07 I-Robots – Glamouflage (Original Version) (digital bonus)
I-Robots present: Craxi Disco – Brennero Express
Opilec Music is pleased to announce the re-release of Craxi Disco’s 2011 classic ‘Brennero Express’, which has been specially remastered and now includes a remix from Spanish producer James Rod.
Craxi Disco, aka Gianni Crucini, is an Italian producer based in London. After years playing synths in a krautrock band and as resident at the famous Italian music temple Link, he also promoted plenty of Italo disco nights in the UK. Nowadays he is known as a heretic of Italo cosmic tradition who has brought the sound into the new century with a strong emotional and transcendental vision that separates him from the crowd.
His tune ‘Brennero Express’ is a cosmic adventure soaked with a parochial ‘80s Italo’s mood and a worldlynostalgia linked to the hippie culture of the 70’s that ended in a sewer overrun with post punk and football hooligans. The track is like a hypnotic night drive on the Brennero Autobahn which connects the Italian Adriatic Riviera and Germany. It’s like a motorik jamming session between Pink Floyd’s David Gilmour and La Dusseldorf and will really carry dance floors away.
Then comes James Rod, a disco, funk and boogie talent who releases on labels like Paper and Midnight Riot as well as his own Golden Soul Records, always with a dynamic style. His Power Guitar Remix is a slower, squelchy, 80’s soundtrack-style stomp which has been extended for the new generation of nu-disco cosmic turntablists.
This is another cultural release from the ever classy Opilec Music label.
01 Craxi Disco – Brennero Express
02 Craxi Disco – Brennero Express (James Rod Power Guitar Remix)
I-Robots – Brother Man (Rouge Cover remixes)
Opilec Music’s eclectic remix series rolls on with another essential package, this time tackling a single from label boss I-Robots’s Law of Robotics album back in 2008. Adding their own spin to things are Red Axes and Hiroshi Watanabe aka Kaito after the likes of Kuniyuki Takahashi, Djembe Monks, Danny Ocean, Los Hermanos, Gary Martin, Alexander Robotnick, Daniele Baldelli & Marco Dionigi have all stepped up previously.
Israeli duo Red Axes go first, a pair known for mixing up synths and guitars in exciting new ways on labels like Hivern Discs, I’m A Cliche and ESP Institute amongst others. Their excellent version of the track re-works it as a deep and spine tingling house cut. Moody chords lull you into a hypnotic and zoned out groove that is finished with some intoxicating spoken words.
Hiroshi Watanabe aka Kaito is next, an acclaimed Kompakt and Transmat artist who makes succulent techno with ambient atmospheres. His brilliant version here is just that, with cosmic chords and slippery rubber beats carrying you away into the night. Warm and inviting, it elevates you to the next level over its long length, it is a classy bit of techno that also comes as a stripped back instrumental version.
After this vital EP come more remixes from the same album, they will all then be put together on I-Robots – Laws Of Robotics 10 Year Anniversary album in 2018.
01 Brother Man (Red Axes Remix)
02 Brother Man (Hiroshi Watanabe Kaito Remix)
03 Brother Man (Hiroshi Watanabe Kaito Instrumental Remix)
Johnson Righeira – Vamos A La Playa: 35th anniversary
Opilec Music is back with another culturally significant release and one which is the first part of a forthcoming compilation series project entitled I-Robots – Turin Dancefloor Express – Piedmont Area Rare Grooves, Disco & Not Disco Sounds. It features a seminal Italo disco track by Johnson Righeira (who also re-recorded the vocals specially for the 2016 Remakes) in its original 1981 demo form as well as with reconstructions by the label boss I-Robots plus acclaimed Italian disco stars Baldelli & Dionigi.
This cult and pioneering track was found on a 1981 C90 tape in the vaults of Susanna Massaia, a close friend and fan of the man who made it, namely the legendary Johnson. He is the original solo songwriter of the tune and its great chorus of “Vamos a la playa, oh, oh, oh” (full lyrics can be read here). He recorded it with the mighty Monuments band at TKS studio and years after he formed Righeira (aka the duo of Johnson and Michael) and the track was produced with la Bionda and went on to sell more than three million copies, making it an evergreen and still classic hit in the worldwide disco scene. Hearing this track in early original form is a real landmark moment that takes us back to the hugely influential Turin scene of the 80s and re-writes the history of early Italo.
In original form ‘Vamos A La Playa’ is a dark and broody disco beat with tight drums and hits, robotic, de-humanised vocals and futuristic synths that laid a clear blueprint for years of dance music to come. The I-Robots Reconstruction is crisp and clean, with even more magical synth lines stitched in and a more spooky lead.
Contemporary stars Baldelli & Dionigi then step up to produce some great new versions. The first is a Cosmic Remake that updates the track for modern dance floors with hard hitting drums and stiff percussion that really demands you dance. I-Robots then edits this with a subtle touch that makes it even more direct.
Then comes a brilliant Cosmic Bizarre Remake that is skittish and kinetic, with busy synths and warm organ chords bringing lots of fast energy to the beat and finally, plus a Bizarre Remake that focuses on the freaky synth lines and a straight Remake that offers yet another sympathetic twist full of vibrant colours. Lastly for the remakes, I-Robots edits this one into a smooth and retro sounding but futuristic cut that bubbles and bristles with disco energy. Last but not least is an original demo version of ‘Disco Volante’ a much more carefree and playful track with quick and slick drums, fluttering vocals and al fresco synths bringing the good times.
Once again this is a vital project from the ever conscientious and culturally astute Opilec Music label.
1. Vamos A La Playa (1981 Original Demo Version)
2. Vamos A La Playa (1981 I-Robots Reconstruction)
3. Vamos A La Playa (1981 I-Robots Extended Reconstruction)
4. Vamos A La Playa (2016 Baldelli & Dionigi Cosmic Remake – I-Robots Edit)
5. Vamos A La Playa (2016 Baldelli & Dionigi Cosmic Remake)
6. Vamos A La Playa (2016 Baldelli & Dionigi Cosmic Bizarre Remake)
7. Vamos A La Playa (2016 Baldelli & Dionigi Bizarre Remake)
8. Vamos A La Playa (2016 Baldelli & Dionigi Remake – I-Robots Edit)
9. Vamos A La Playa (2016 Baldelli & Dionigi Remake)
10. Disco Volante (1981 Original Demo Version)
I-Robots – Kind of Intrigue (The Cosmic Disco remixes)
Continuing with a series that focusses on brilliant remixes of I-Robots originals, Opilec Music now bring together two more Italian legends of the scene in Alexander Robotnick and Daniele Baldelli & Marco Dionigi. They both turn out reworks of ‘Kind of Intrigue’ from 2009 as part of an on going project that is all based around the impact of Isaac Asimov’s Laws of Robotics and features art by Tamami Saito. Santiago Salazar and Mr. Raoul K, Los Hermanos and Gary Martin and more are all part of this on going concept which again comes up with the goods here.
Alexander Robotnick is a living electronic music legend from Italy who pioneered an Italo disco sound in the 80s and is still going strong. From scoring films to remixing big name stars via turning out essential electro tracks, he is a top talent who proves that once more here.
His excellent version of the original is built on firm kicks and has big colourful chords, wavy bass and twinkling melodies all making for a serene, spaced out groove. Muttered vocals and sci-fi signifiers all make it a hot and steamy affair perfect for summer sessions.
Daniele Baldelli is a cult star from the Italo world and here he teams up with Marco Dionigi to make for a dream production pairing. Dionigi is boss of Quantistic Division and has turned out many seminal albums and EPs since the mid 90s. He was there at the birth of digital technology, has created new genres such as Slow Motion and knows how to cook up a hypnotic melody, as evidenced here.
Their take on ‘Kind Of Intrigue’ is more subtle and stripped back. It has widescreen synths stretching in all directions, wet and gurgling disco arps and spoken word monologues musing on robots. It is perfectly trippy and analogue and is stuffed with classic Italo vibes of the sort that will make it a big hit with boat parties crew and Balearic lovers everywhere this summer.
This package is another in a long line of classic but modern disco releases that prove Opilec Music does things properly each and every time.
A. Kind Of Intrigue (Alexander Robotnick Remix)
B. Kind Of Intrigue (Daniele Baldelli & Marco Dionigi Remix)
I-Robots – Dirty Talk feat. Donna McGhee (European Connection EP)
The next project on Opilec Music is a fine EP produced by label boss I-Robots together with the legendary Piatto brothers, Alessandro and Davide, and comes with an unreleased dub as well as a remix by Rekids boss Radio Slave.
Davide Piatto is a member of N.O.I.A. who co-produced the original ‘Dirty Talk’ single and seminal De-Ja-Vù album of legendary proto-house outfit Klein & M.B.O. in 1982 while Donna McGhee exclusively agreed to provide the vocals for the I-Robots remake released by Opilec earlier this year.
The new version of this track presented on this great new EP uses exactly the same vintage equipment and as such the “Unreleased Dub” is six minutes of dubbed out bliss with pixelated chords, soaring synth lines and slick grooves that come laced with arpeggiated disco dazzle. A rugged bassline underpins the whole thing and it is easy to see why this one is already in such hot demand.
The “Original Acapella”, without any beats, is also included for DJs who like to do their own tricks, and then there is the incredible “Radio Slave Magnetic Feel Remix” already played by Dixon and thus one of the most sought after tunes of Sonar 2015.
Radio Slave is a big Italo Disco fan who wanted to remix this classic for Opilec Music and already Felix Da Housecat is playing it, whilst DJ Hell, youANDme and Rocky Jones from D.J. International Chicago all personally requested it. And no wonder because it is eleven minutes of seriously steaming, slow building and long burning house pleasure with massive rubbery kicks, cleverly filtered vocals and a slowed down bass line from the original that adds serious weight. This is a standout track that cannot fail to get the whole floors attention, and a bonus “Radio Slave Magnetic Feel Acapella” version is also included on the digital release.
After the label put out the original of this track earlier in the year (see the video below), there has been much demand for these remixes, and now they are here no one can be disappointed.
A. Dirty Talk ft. Donna McGhee (Radio Slave Magnetic Feel Remix)
B1. Dirty Talk ft. Donna McGhee (Unreleased Dub)
B2. Dirty Talk ft. Donna McGhee (Original Acapella)
Digital only. Dirty Talk ft. Donna McGhee (Radio Slave Magnetic Feel Acapella)
Giorgio Moroder vs I-Robots – Utopia – Me Giorgio
The concept of this release was simply to create longer versions of the track that was originally included in the From Here To Eternity partially mixed album – incredibly no one else has officially done this since the original release date in 1977. Importantly, though, because the track is so seminal, the remixes are all hugely sympathetic affairs that don’t change the atmosphere or intentions of the original artist.
Up first is the ‘I-Robots 1977 Reconstruction’, which has just seen the original extended from 3:23 minutes to almost 7 minutes (all these reconstructions are long). The result is a fantastic thing that is now perfectly suited to club play with fulsome modern production, a revisited version that is a perfect reinterpretation maintaining the spirit of the ’77 original.
For the ‘I-Robots 2014 Tape Reconstruction’, the remixer had a dream that he found an old original Moroder tape in a flea market and used it to beef up this track. The addition of analog tape background noise gives the mix a dirty and dusty vintage sound and as such it now has a strong and powerful impact with infectious drums, frazzled synth lines and plenty of meaty disco dazzle.
Finally, The ‘I-Robots 2014 Reconstruction’ is the clean version of the Tape Reconstruction with a powerful tech-house beat underpinning it, making it the version most suited to heavy dancefloor usage.
The vinyl release includes only the 1977 and the 2014 Tape Reconstructions and is handled exclusively by Opilec Music. The artwork comes from Maque Studio, Turin, Italy.
1. Utopia – Me Giorgio (I-Robots 1977 Reconstruction)
2. Utopia – Me Giorgio (I-Robots 2014 Tape Reconstruction)
3. Utopia – Me Giorgio (I-Robots 2014 Reconstruction) digital only