Describing itself as a showcase of “the brightest and most talented house producers from Poland”, Transatlantyk Records‘ new compilation – Polo House: A Look Into The Bowels Of The Polish House Underground – is an interesting and varied look into an under-appreciated scene. The compilation plucks nine songs from mostly under-the-radar artists and spreads them across four sides of vinyl in an attempt to showcase the talent emerging from the country.
The collection kicks off with a trio of buttery smooth house tunes leading into Universo’s ‘Nes Sous’, where a looped orchestral sample is underpinned by a bouncy organ bassline that ends up sounding something like a Polish cousin of Pépé Bradock’s ‘Deep Burnt’. Following this is the rougher ‘Thissisterisall’ from Lutto Lento, all stomping drums and organ chords it uses classic house ingredients but has enough character to stand out from clichés. However, it’s the compilation’s second half that really shines.
Naphta’s ‘Claws’ is probably the most original thing here – using a colourful collage of samples of traditional music and pairing this with tribal drums, it’s guaranteed to get heads nodding and shoulders bouncing. Freux provides swirling pads and driving basslines on ‘Amplified Youth’ before a raging sax solo emerges, pushing the energy levels up a notch in a track that will surely be popular amongst DJs. The best-named artist we’ve heard in a while, Eltron John then reminds us that it can be sunny in Poland too with ‘KCK’. Built around a looped string sample, lazy drums and some subtle guitar licks, it’s the kind of tune you’d want to hear on a beach somewhere, preferably with a mojito in hand. In putting together Polo House, label boss Zambon has provided a view into a scene in fine form, which surely signals some bright things to come for the featured producers.