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  • Filed under: Review
  • 11/13/2013

Magic Touch Nothing More EP

  • Words: Tim Gentles
  • Label: True Romance
  • XLR8R Rating: 7.5/10

As one of the first artists to release music on Not Not Fun's sister label 100% Silk, the reputation of recent Los Angeles transplant Magic Touch (a.k.a. Damon Palermo) might be forever tied to the murky disco and house approximations embodied by that label. For Palermo's latest release though, the producer has opted issue an EP via Tensnake's new True Romance imprint. The involvement of Tensnake—the German DJ/producer known for his slick, '80s-inspired sound—signals something of a shift towards increasingly polished, lush sounds from Magic Touch. Indeed, the Nothing More EP finds Palermo working with NYC vocalist Fatha Green on the luxurious title track, and the two cuts featured on the record's flipside also a showcase an increasingly decadent, disco-meets-rave sound.

"Nothing More" opens with glossy, low-key synths before a big-room bassline, kicks, and Fatha Green's soulful vocal enter the picture. The tune then takes on a decidedly theatrical feeling with its delirious synths and the sexualized dramatics of the vocals, which feels like a substantial departure from Palermo's previously cut-and-pasted, loop-based hi-NRG house tracks. The track is a compelling departure from Magic Touch's by now familiar production style, but also comes across as a bit dated, recalling the neo-disco of Hercules and Love Affair and the aforementioned Tensnake. More effective are the record's two b-sides, the aptly titled "Enter the Rhythm" and "Move Your Body Into Me." The former is a bouncy piano-house tune with a looped disco vocal that suggests Palermo has always been more interested in the flamboyant side of disco than the rest of his 100% Silk brethren. It's incredibly simple, but masterfully executed, with the tune's disembodied vocal loop perfectly evoking ecstatic club energies. "Move Your Body Into Me" is another perfectly elegant, high-energy take on classic diva and piano house, which at times approaches the psychedelic. The EP also includes an instrumental version of "Nothing More." While Nothing More's a-side is slightly disappointing, the EP's other offerings showcase what makes Magic Touch one of the 100% Silk camp's most compelling producers.

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