The guys at Donky Pitch have had an exciting 2013. With releases from the likes of Lockah, Friendzone, Lil Texas, and not to mention the label’s first full length project from The Range, we submit that their time spent flying under the radar will undoubtedly come to an end in 2014. When we heard that North Carolina based producer Tokyo Hands was teaming up with the Brighton boys for a five track EP we were all pretty excited, and after dipping our toes in the electronically fuelled pond that was “Valleys”, we were enamoured. It became a waiting game, that was until last week when Tokyo Hands dropped his Islands EP, filling our ears with beautiful melodies, and our heads with visions of loveliness. We guess we’re a bit late off the mark, but to be honest we’ve spent that time taking it in, and take it in we did. In an interview with Dipped In Dollars the man himself said that last year he spent his time “listening to to a lot of Bobby Caldwell, Drake, Björk, and Outkast”; as advocates of most of these, it’s not surprising we took a shine to the young producer and founder of Tom Crew Label.
The EP kicks off with “Rainforests”, then brings in what we can only describe as a vibe like those 90’s floor fillers except without the cheese. There’s a Rustie element to the track and this, coupled with tropical, feel good synths makes the opening a strong one. Everything cools down a bit when “Letters” chimes through your speakers. There’s a sensuality to this track: infusing beautiful synth melodies with meticulous footwork percussion, it tilts only slightly to an ambient feel at the beginning only to gradually slide smoothly into such a seductive undulating rhythm that you’d be hard pressed not to feel like this tune has passed through you. If Letters enters unexpectedly into your system we imagine “Wana”, the third track, is what leaves when you let go with the music. There’s that punctilious nature again, proving that even though this is only his second ever EP, this man has honed his production technique flawlessly. “Down 4 U”, according to Tokyo Hands, was the longest and hardest nut to crack on the EP. After originally having about 9 minutes worth of track to cut back and refine the seemingly arduous task doesn’t show through whatsoever. What remains is that thick, punchy sub bass along with an infectious vocal sample which kind of reminds us of those early Damu tunes we love so much. The EP ends rather fittingly with “Valleys”, the track that first whet our appetite; it’s a slow, well thought out, groggy and foggy tune, with a lilting vocal sample that will thoroughly leave you wanting and wondering. Islands is an EP that we’re sure you’ll love, and we thank the guys over at Donky Pitch for backing this talented man.
Stream: Tokyo Hands – Islands EP (Donkey Pitch)
Tokyo Hands’ Islands EP is out now on cassette and digital format via Donky Pitch’s Bandcamp.