Here’s a combination for the ages. In the first corner, for the first time on the Binary Blog (sorry we’ve been holding out on you guys), we have Ghosts of Venice. He’s a 23-year-old producer/DJ based out of Leeds who’s been bringing pure, unadulterated disco back to the dancefloor since his debut last year. In the second corner we have the prolific Binary favorite Bit Funk, who has been churning out new material and remixes like butter the past few months–hallelujah. Both producers have quite the ear for grooveable rhythms and a healthy nostalgia for bygone music eras, and as a result they turn out old school disco and house like nobody’s business. The collaboration of the two marks the genre’s biggest “well it’s about time!” moment of recent memory.
Ghosts of Venice burst onto the scene last year with his blog hit ‘I Learned From the Best.’ It was an excellent piece of Daft Punk-influenced filter house intent on getting you grooving. Since then Ghosts of Venice (real name Lee Dunn) has been honing his sound and craft, releasing some pretty fantastic remixes and original pieces along the way. He’s now eschewing French Touch in favor of a more disco-revivalist sound. Channeling his efforts into disco may seem a risky marketing move what with the triumphant return of the Daft kings themselves just around the corner, but Dunn isn’t one to hop on the bandwagon of others’ success. Instead, he serves as a prime example of someone carving a name for themselves by virtue of pure talent versus hype. The good news is he’s got the chops to get noticed, as evidenced by the release of his first EP, Her, with Solid Bump Records. A follow-up full length is expected next year on Strictly Rhythm. The Her EP marks a foray into mainstream disco and sees Dunn making good on his promise to deliver “music to make girls dance.” What could possibly make this pulsing funky lounge masterpiece better? Enter: Bit Funk.
When we got word that Bit Funk was doing a remix, I was expecting his distinct brand of synth heavy nu-disco to pull Dunn’s old-school throwback ‘Her’ to the modern era. Not quite. Instead, he capitalizes on his Chicago residency and makes the track even funkier by drawing influence from the Chicago House movement. Sorry Dreamwave purists, don’t expect any sort of ‘Love Scientific’ here. That’s not to say this isn’t a modern work—the production quality and filter use (yes, they’re still there) distinguish it from a Warehouse-era original—but it’s as strong of a nod to Bit Funk’s Chicago predecessors as I’ve heard. Bit Funk has crafted a remix that would get even the legendary Frankie Knuckles’ toe tapping. A subtle disco house gem, its funk bass line and compressed guitar riffs render the mix more ‘homage’ than ‘nu.’ Does Bit Funk know that people don’t wear leisure suits anymore? No? Alright, well please nobody tell him, because his 80s-house-cum-70s-disco revival work is pure gold. Maybe it’s my Chicago roots suffering a serious case of nostalgia, but listening to this remix all I want to do is fly back home and seek out the haziest smoke-filled club I can find under fading neon lights. Once inside I expect to post up on a wine-stained couch, cocktail in hand, and listen to Bit Funk’s ‘Her’ remix being played by a live ensemble dressed in inappropriate garb for our decade. If only.