Lee Jones is fast becoming my favourite producer on the block (I’m not sure how I define “the block”, but you know what I mean). The ex-pat Englishman is the backbone of Berlin’s My My DJ/production team, whose Songs for the Gentle LP was one of my favourite records of ’07 and, judging from the results and red carpet chatter of our recent TAPE Awards, probably one of yours too. Jones can produce really intense, skyscraping house and techno without sacrificing spaciousness and bubbliness and low-slung funk, resulting in tunes that sound as good on an E-ridden dancefloor as a hungover sofa, as befitting to a stroll down the street as to a journey through space. This may have something to do with his anchoring background in chilled, downbeat gubbins, when he recorded and remixed for labels like Ninja Tune and Talkin’ Loud back in (the not too distant) day, under the name Hefner (not to be confused with the now-defunct indie no-hopers Hefner, whose ‘Hymn For The Cigarettes’, much to Carnage’s disgust, used to be and still is one of my best-loved indie no-hoper anthems). Jones can excite without agitating, and he’s got a sense of musicality and melody that’s rare even among some of the most talented producers we praise in these pages.
Of course, My My is a joint project with Carsten Klemann, Nicolas Hoppner, but Jones (pictured left, with some bloke), I gather, is restless and productive enough to pursue a parallel ‘solo career’ as remixer/producer – and it’s in that capacity that he’s really been catching my ear. His version of Sideshow’s ‘Philly Soundworks’ , with it’s delicately picked-out piano notes, sweeping Detroit synths, chunky analogue riffage and a whole load of other disparate elements skilfully teased into compatability, was utterly brilliant – and possessed a warmth, a generosity if you will (you won’t, will you?), which is to me the hallmark of The Lee Jones Sound. I thought the Sideshow track (check Sideshow’s album, incidentally, which places his own refreshing, dubby excursions alongside reworks from Mathew Jonson, John Tejada and, of course, Lee Jones) might be a one-off, but then I heard Lee’s mix of Jacapo Carreras (pictured way up top), on the ever-reliable Lan Muzic, and entitled ‘Olanto’. As with ‘Philly Soundworks’, Jones manages to take things way deep even as he prioritizes making arses shake; there’s little more to say other than that it’s incredibly satisfying and incredibly GOOD. I all but guarantee you’ll love it.
Promos are doing the rounds at the moment; keep an eye on Phonica et al and snap up a copy at the earliest opportunity, yeah? Yeah.