Available on: Hessle Audio (in conjunction with the British Council) 12″

While the fathomless self-aggrandisement, unjustifiable hyperbole and elementary spelling mistakes that comprise many press releases can be diverting, and sometimes more entertaining than the actual records they seek to describe, only the most desperate hack, careering headlong towards a deadline, is ever genuinely influenced by the contents of a press release. Or so I thought, until I received the document that accompanied Ramadanman’s Wickeda remixes.

This record is the result of a project between the British Council and Bulgaria, for which the good citizens of Bulgaria were asked to vote for their favourite Bulgarian pop songs of the 90s, which were then compiled into a top ten, before three young British producers, including Ramadanman, were invited to remix one of the chosen tracks. The results were showcased at a British Council-organised club night in the Bulgarian capital, Sofia, where the British producers led a workshop for a group of their Bulgarian counterparts. Wickeda were, apparently, very popular in Bulgaria in the 90s.

The snappily titled ‘A Nie Dvamata S Bobi Piem Kafe’ (Ramadanman Refix), three versions of which are included on this EP, is a clattering percussive track, propelled by more drum timbres than are probably strictly necessary, although the addition of a garbled (presumably Bulgarian) vocal sample creates a distinctive staccato counterpoint to the busy rhythm. Bearing the record’s bizarre provenance in mind, ‘A Nie Dvamata S Bobi Piem Kafe’ is the result of a seemingly worthy project, and while it’s perhaps more of a curiosity than a great track in its own right, it would make a useful club tool; allowing an imaginative DJ to segue between house, soca, garage and funky, adding character and texture to any set.

Colin McKean



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