Over the years, the electronic & dance music alone have seen some of the most eyebrow-raising, yet intriguing collaborations of them all. But from Pnau’s work with Elton John, all the way to features from Toto on the most recent What So Not record, none seem quite as generationally gap-bridging yet head-smackingly obvious as the upcoming Golden Features and The Presets EP ‘RAKA’, and it’s lead single ‘Paradise’ will leave you with a sense of familiarity to have you wondering why the two haven’t done so sooner.
No strangers to each others work, 2014 would mark the first time Tom Snell, under the Golden Features moniker, would combine efforts with industry darlings Julian Hamilton and Kim Moyes of The Presets, resulting in the red light district vibes of Snell’s bass-driven remix of Presets single ‘No Fun’. It’s by contrast then, that the sun-drenched ‘Paradise’ isn’t so nearly as concerned with making the foundations of your listening environment rattle and shake as it is with establishing groove and perhaps most importantly, space.
The ensuing 3:35 balladic minutes detail an escapist desire to abandon responsibility and flee from one’s mortal shackles, but is left so consciously ambiguous so as to allow one’s own interpretation and subsequent application of the evocative and chorusing lyrics “There’s a paradise, let me take you there”.
The motif of mysticism is underpinned by a simple house groove, accompanied by pristine percussion that cuts through a mix of a swirling Rhodes, funky low-cut FM-synthesized bass, and the trending 16th-note feel of the emerging ‘melodic-house’ sub-genre. It’s a much more refined and dare-say, radio-friendly combination reminiscent of fashionable ‘Anjunadeep’ label stylings that falls much more in tandem with the direction of Presets remix-mates Rüfüs Du Sol than it does the Jauz-like bass-house gut-punch of Snell’s early work.
It goes without saying then that we’ll soon get to see wether this is a permanent change in direction for the Sydney-born producer, or rather some carefully crafted experimentation come November 15 when we finally get a chance to sample the fruits of the pair’s labour with the cornucopia that is sure to become full ‘RAKA’ EP.