For over a decade, Giles Smith and James Priestley have been taking club music in the capital where no one else dares. First changing the face of London’s Sunday landscape, their secretsundaze parties now dominates nightlife calendars across the weekend, not just for their lineups, but Giles and James’ own prowess as residents. Aided by a tireless devotion to collecting records, we call upon one ambassador of said London institution to channel his encyclopedic knowledge into the back catalogue of New Jersey double act, Blaze. Together, Josh Milan and Kevin Hedge helped pioneer the deep house sound in the New York metro area of the 90s, conceived in sweaty back rooms and taking over the world in the following years. Below, Giles triesf to narrow down their extensive catalogue into five favourites and, before you jump in, here’s some words from him:
“Just as a foot note, I’d say that it was ridiculous to single out a Blaze top five. I picked out ten as absolute essentials only getting half way though their catalogue. The Blaze team of Josh Milan and Kevin Hedge provided anthem after anthem. Eternal respect and love for Blaze!”
Blaze – Sacred Sex (Slip n Slide)
Taken from the Basic Blaze LP this is just a sublime driving atmospheric cut that shows Blaze are not just about soul heavy vocal tracks. Things get super hypnotic three-quarters of the way through.
Star Suite – Mondo Grosso (Shelter Vocal Mix) (King Street)
Without doubt one of the most epic and dramatic house tracks. So many twists and turns. Funkineven dropped this at secretsundaze Sonar back in June and it sounded as fresh as ever. Apologies for the horrible YouTube image on this upload.
Blaze – Lovelee Dae (Classic)
Shouldn’t need any introduction. Total anthem and one of the most unique vocal house tracks, period. Really trance like and a much more modern aesthetic than some of their productions. It’s always a toss up between this and the 2020 Vision remix which is stunning too.
Blaze – The Garden (Slip n Slide)
Just an amazing vocal on this. So sweet and heartfelt.
Blaze – How Deep Is Your Love (Timmy Reisford Shelter remix) (Shelter)
Timmy Regisford tweaked this so well. I remember playing this the week it came out at one of the Faith bank holiday double headers in Brighton back in 2001.The bass line is just off the scale on this!
Giles Smith plays alongside WBEEZA, Galcher Lustwerk, Kai Alcé and James Priestley at the secretsundaze Summer Closing, this Saturday at Village Underground. For further upcoming events, check their Facebook page.