M.ono - The Royal Juice Cuts No. 01 [Rose Records]

Leipzig label Rose Records - run by a sharp crew boasting the talents of Luvless, Martin Hayes and M.ono - is back after a little over a year with a solo effort from the latter. The imprint is renown within our little corner of the scene for polished deep house cuts that effortlessly weave samples and hardware together for quite the warm effect. After initially starting with a run of three V/A EPs, the label transitioned to artist-focused records (both from their crew and like-minded friends such as Junktion or Laurence Guy) aside from sneaking in a nice little compilation last year as their 10th release. The 11th entry in the catalog is the aforementioned M.ono's first full solo EP since the beautifully heady Volle Schnauze EP on Heist Recordings. It might be strange to say, but after six years of operation, the Rose crew and label are somewhat of an institution in these parts. I've come up listening to these guys and it still gives me pleasure to see them maintaining.

Anyways, let's take a swig of The Royal Juice Cuts, shall we? "Sweet Paranoia" starts the affair with the producer's preferred drum machine work providing the backbone for some sweet, chopped soul samples. It's a familiar vibe for anyone who's been following this crew, and that's not a bad thing. Uplifting textures adorn the track to fully synthesize Rose's trademark bright mood. Then, on the same side, a hidden track sits waiting to provide some stealthy disco action. This one is a bit more low slung than it's A-side compatriot, funking it up with hand percussion and clever samples reminiscent of Razor-N-Tape's Rose Cutz. The combination of tracks works, in any case, tied together by similar aesthetics and sweet soul strings and vocal stabs.

Flip the wax over and you get "Cognacschwenker", a super jazzy groover that layers and layers pads and keys like only the Rose boys can. This one will likely steal the show for many; it's delicious rhodes and organ stabs and smartly arranged hat work sure to set the perfect happy mood. The last sip of Royal Juice comes via "Matzuya Romance", again lacing together the keys for maximum vibe. It's a pensive deep house joint that's built for a properly chilled mood.

Overall, the EP is sure to please fans of the Rose crew. It's essentially what we've come to expect from the collective; intelligent and effortlessly pretty deep house jams that nod to both the future and days past.

The record appears sold out on a few outlets, but there seems to be a few left on deejay, HHV and more. Discogs: https://www.discogs.com/sell/release/10816161?ev=rb