The Exotic Delight Bay
Released: 8th Mar, 2009
Label: Tru Thoughts
This is French producer Azaxx’s first album on Tru Thoughts (although his track “Fiesta Tropical” was featured on the ‘Shapes 07:02’ label compilation) but he is no stranger to acclaim – most notably for his track “Bahia”, a funky breaks head-nodder which came out on Freddy Fresh’s 45s label Howlin’ Records. Hand-picked by electronica guru Fresh as one of his essential tracks of the moment, the “Bahia” 7” went on to nail the ultimate crossover seal of approval, being played on the John Peel Show.
A native of Rennes in North-East France, Azaxx has long been a major player at the funkier end of the city’s dance music scene, DJing drum ’n’ bass and beats in the early days through to an eclectic cocktail of Latin beats, jazz, soul, funk, breakbeat, broken beat and ‘60s and ‘70s grooves. With a knack for working a dancefloor, he has manned the decks at clubs across Europe and as far afield as Brazil, and is a regular DJ at the major Trans Musicales Festival. In an excellent and intriguing addition to his CV,” Azaxx”:/artists/azaxx has also produced records for the harpist Alan Stivell, one of the most respected players of traditional Celtic music from his native Brittany.
‘The Exotic Delight Bay’ – more dancefloor-orientated than previous Azaxx productions – is definitely an album for the DJs, but anyone who digs a tasty rhythm will find much to treasure in his style. Cherry-picking from a vast array of musical sources, using an MPC, a sequencer and some carefully deployed VSTs, Azaxx has chopped, mixed, stripped, layered, added his own personal stamp, and built a unique sound which combines a ‘less is more’ aesthetic with big, friendly beats and track-defining hooks. Azaxx dreamt up most of the track names (“Happy Mango”, “Wild Strawberry Jelly”, “Ooba Ooba” to name a few) while sipping coconuts on the beach in the South American sunshine and, if that doesn’t conjure up an idyllic enough mental image for you, the achingly picturesque scene on the album cover is a photo that he took while he was there. ‘The Exotic Delight Bay’, true to its title, is an ideal soundtrack to the start of the summer – and for vinyl junkies.