Andy Vaz: Humanization EP

“Style is the answer to everything…” a male voice intones during “One for Charley,” the concluding cut on Andy Vaz's Humanization EP, and no better words might be used to describe the Background head's glorious contribution to Yore's 12-inch series. Naturally, the material's deep fusion of House and Techno is given the lush production treatment we've come to expect from Vaz but the EP is also, without question, his most dance-floor-oriented release with all three tracks exuding a laser-sharp club focus. Another distinguishing feature is that the material locates a perfect middle ground between exuberant extroversion and carefully calibrated restraint. Of course, Vaz is no stranger to the world of minimal Techno—in his Background releases, he's been pushing the sound for years—but his sound is rendered even more irresistible when wedded to Yore's sleek Detroit-edged vibe.

Setting the EP's tone with an infectious, eight-minute journey, the A side's “Humanized” breezily moves through episodes of locomotive swing and jazzy technofunk. Having been tested live over the last three months, the flip side's “You Got?” regularly incites “hands-in-the-air” results when played during club dates. While a female singer repeatedly chants the mantra-like title, a disco-house strut grows around it, powered by classic ‘70s bass lines and horns; the tune's as funky as it gets, and oozes serious hit potential. Shifting stylistic gears, the aforementioned deep house cut “One for Charley” becomes even more alluring when Berlin's Tilman Ehrhorn lays enticing sax melodies over Rhodes keys and a classic swinging groove. Much like the inaugurating Yore releases by Rick Wade and .xtrak (Todd Sines), Vaz's Humanization EP feels both old-school and contemporary, and represents a bold new stage in his ongoing musical evolution.

September 2007