REVIEW: Booka Shade — “Honeyslave EP” & “Honeyslave Remixes” (Dim Mak Records)


The Honeyslave EP was the first release for German house duo Booka Shade on Steve Aoki’s Dim Mak Records, and what in the old days would have been considered a “double A-side,” a single where both songs were intended to be hits. Released this past August, the original EP featured the dark house title track plus an even more minimal and dark — to the point of being spooky — Club Mix of the same name. This clubby version has all the requisite builds and drops for the floors, only they are enhanced by its shuffling and haunting quality. The other A-side is the Extended Mix of “Tomorrow Belongs To Us,” a tinkling, borderline quiet number whose blipping rhythms force you to pay closer attention to its subtle dimensions. Its Club Mix swaps the tinkles for booms and the blips for synthesizer stabs that give bassbins something to work toward. “Honeyslave (Club Remix),” Honeyslave EP

The same two tracks are remixed again, and yet again on the separate, 5-track Honeyslave Remixes EP. Bookended by two retakes of “Honeyslave,” the first, Matador Remix is a saucier take on the spookiness of the Club Mix while the Beltek Remix is a punishing, twisted electro take. Nestled in the middle are three retakes of “Tomorrow Belongs To Us.” The Acme Remix goes in a softer, moody house direction; the Shameboy Remix goes in a harsh, tech-y direction; the Sound of Stereo Remix combines electro with techno in a direction that is melodic and aggressive in turns. Whatever your style, these two EPs will provide a version that will work for you. “Honeyslave (Matador Remix),” Honeyslave Remixes