Aihki - Karesuando (Is It Balearic)

Well, with the holidays now safely behind us we are suddenly left with much less cash, a few extra pounds (not the good kind!), coughing, sniffly kids and some colder weather that's kicked in for many of us. Fortunately though we've been pretty lucky discovering a few good tunes to kick off the new year in proper fashion. One shining example that immediately comes to mind that dropped just before the holidays is the latest outing by the Is It Balearic guys (who are completely on fire at the moment) . With a musthave record that came out last summer - 'Slower' - a blisteringly good 4 tracker by I Boat Captain - aka Tiago, with tight remixes by the Backwoods and usual suspect Coyote...the ever dependable IIB boys are back for more once again. This time it's in the form a lovely 12" by newcomer duo Aihki from Helsinki, along with Coyote and Eddie C on remix duties - needless to say this is just what the doctor ordered on these here cold January nights.

All four tracks here on offer are more or less ace I think, however my two favourites are probably the two mixes of 'Samarkand'. On the A side it's difficult to disagree with 'Karesuando' though - a deep and chunky flute and sitar-backed affair that actually hits the spot in a big way, despite such an odd description. Coyote's Scanarama remix does the trick too, possibly coming off as a slightly more spiced up cousin to Mark Seven's 'Deep Seoul' from 2010, a great track. 'Samarkand' on the flip is such a fun chugger though, and as I listen now might just be the pick for me. With a crisp driving beat and pulsating bassline, guitar and kindof robotic vocal hooks that keep everything alive, this tune just plain rocks. The canadian bacon then spices things up beautifully with dreamy pads and cunningly blissed out reverb sounds, creating one of the best early morning tracks we've heard in ages. Love this to bits.

Have a listen and do yourself a favour by picking it up at a fine shop near you.