Here you have it, dance music in its purest form. ‘Tomorrow’s People’ is the debut record from Shire T, AKA one half of the mighty Maribou State. And as the album’s been released via an imprint of the duo, Dama Dama, you very much know it’s come from solid, revered backing.
This nine-track collection is a nod to British club culture, while still incorporating various influences from global scenes. Every loop, hook and sound effect has been skilfully, flawlessly curated, leaving me with an urgency to jump on the dancefloor and be amid the strobe lights. It’s got feel-good, throwback vibes, with some show-me-the-future ones, too.
If you’re into your classic drum machines, it doesn’t get much better than ‘Blue Kiss’, the knockout lead track, for me. That TB-303 bassline will have you on your feet immediately — you’ll be rinsing it soon enough as well. It’s got ‘Saturday night’ written all over it, with those divine female vocals delicately placing the cherry on top of this absolute tune.
The album opens, though, with call-to-action spoken words laid atop pulsing synths on ‘Full Attention’. It’s a strong builder into what’s to come — and, yep, you’ve got my ears at this point, undivided and gripped.
There’s something initially a bit more hip-hop in the beat of ‘Under The Sun’, which slowly climbs into a slower dancefloor anthem. But it’s the fading into ‘L.D.R.A’ with Wish & Fonda Rae that gives the illusion of just coming back from the bar, full noise of the speakers not yet in range. It’s got a repetitive main line, as many songs of its kind often do, but that just adds to its catchiness.
And speaking of, ‘Mind Games’ also rears its melodic head to supply nothing but a bop-along-to-me hit.
If the very fabric of ‘90s club bangers is what does it for you, then the roof-raising ‘Over You’ is a hypnotic delight. Its enchanting pace is something else. Then, by way of upping the ante and almost making me want to tee up some Chic to play after this, the ultra-funky ‘Burnin’ Jungle’ is a whopping masterclass in ‘70s-tinged disco.
Fans of the slower groove or even Bonobo should make a beeline for the soft ‘London. Paris. Berlin.’ and the even gentler closing track, ‘Serve No Tea’. I’m even drawing on Justin Vernon/Bon Iver piano parallels here.
There’s just so much to be relished on this album.
If you only download one track, let it be: ‘Blue Kiss’