Groove Theory @ Undertone, Cardiff
Fri 5 Feb
Groove Theory’s first party of the year follows a superlative 2015. You can’t overstate the strength of their DJ bookings throughout last year, including West London broken beat king Dego, NYC disco hero Sadar Bahar and Baltimore house auteur Maurice Fulton.
Jay Daniel’s first release was signed by Theo Parrish himself to his esteemed label, Sound Signature, arriving, it seemed, at his spiritual home. The influence of the hometown heroes who came before Jay Daniel is channelled clearly through his own music. The jazz-minded, freeform approach to deep house music pushed by godlike Detroit producers like Theo Parrish, Moodymann and Marcellus Pittman is hard to teach and impossible to fake. They seem to have been born with a feel for instinctive rhythms that creep into the body and can only be from Detroit.
The city’s house music is in his blood though, it has to be acknowledged – his mother is Naomi Daniel, who in the early nineties sang on Stars and Feel The Fire by another Motor City luminary, Carl Craig. Whatever it is that allows certain people from Detroit to make drum machines sound like they’re alive and breathing (“groove theory” perhaps) – Jay Daniel has it. Luckily for Cardiff, he’s also reputed to be a seriously good DJ, confirmed by eagerly-received appearances at Movement Detroit festival and in the Boiler Room podcast series.
Tickets: £13/£12. Info: 029 2022 8883
words GWYN THOMAS DE CHROUSTCHOFF