Pets Recordings, the Polish label headed by Grzegorz Demiañczuk and Wojciech Tarañczuk, the visionaries behind Catz n' Dogz, has been releasing refreshing deep house and quirky techno since 2010. Their impressive roster of artists including East Everything, Maceo Plex, J Phlip and Martin Dawson, along with lesser-known names such as Eltron John and Bubba, has been pumping out consistently charting music that fits in with richly percussive modern techno and off center bass-heavy sets alike.
The latest release, “Remixes 2012,” from Unknown Artist, includes three subtly powerful tracks rife with vocal samples and front-and-center key stabs. The first, “Anxiety” (Breach Remix), opens with a sparse yet captivating bassline and descends into a chugging house groove before breaking down into swirling arpeggios. The second, “The Time Has Come Back” (Breach Remix), starts out somewhat lackluster—a generic house vocal and lazily rolling kick-snare. Things start to get interesting after an open breakdown just after the two and a half minute mark; the track hunkers down and gets deeper. It digs further as the key line is switched up and another vocal line added—by the song’s end it has transformed entirely into a trippy, beautiful mess. Finishing out “Remixes 2012” is “What You Need” (Coat of Arms Remix), immediately accessible with it’s catchy reverbed-out vocal loop and sound that is equal parts UK garage and modern house.
While none of these tracks are instant classics, they all hold their own in the often dangerously bland world of tech-house and deftly carve out a unique and memorable space between the perhaps more sparkling (if shorter lived) peak-time bangers.