We can safely claim that this 10" record by Frank Booker is the year's first essential release. We've been staunch fans of Mr. Booker since we first started this place (I just went through the archives and we first mentioned the New-Zealand based producer in 2009 when we covered his second release on Untracked) so everytime his name pop up in some obscure pre-order section or newsletter we get just a little excited (pulse goes up, dilated pupils and trachea etc). He doesn't put out much music (a handful of EPs over the past few years), but the tunes that do find its way onto vinyl are invariably exceptional. Frank's chuggy, fuzzy understated drums and driving basslines are some of the finest in the game, and he has found a way of weaving samples of old and forgotten soul nuggets into his productions that is neither obvious nor easy, layering sound upon sound and effect upon effect while still letting a track 'breathe' and retain the natural swing of the source material.
"Hope", the title track of his latest outing on London's Fine Art recordings, is a fine showcase of Frank Booker's impeccable taste and skills. The percussive intro, reminiscent of an old Marvin Gaye tune, gently eases you into deeper and headier territories with Mr. Booker's trademark drums helping things move along rather nicely. Once the bassline kicks in you're locked in for good. I've had this on repeat since getting my hands on the record, nine minutes of absolute glory. On the flip there's No Delay, a classy deep uptempo filter fest. I doubt I'll ever play that track though, as the A side is just too damn good.
Pick up a copy here