Thursday 21 May 2015


This is a lovely and super delicious meal of music arriving courtesy of Vancouver-located production duo Jack Juston and Liam Butler, better known as the musical entity that they engineer and inhabit, Pender Street Steppers. It's called 'The Glass City' and usually with names such as this I'm just completely besotted with them because they conjure sceneries for the imagination that can then be soundtracked with the music once it's actually playing.

But I found out that "City of Glass" is a nickname for Vancouver (one of many, according to Wikipedia), coming from the title of a Douglas Coupland book of the same name, referring to the mainly steel-and-glass nature of the city's architecture.


The track itself 'The Glass City' is a not over-complicated yet totally bustling journey, moving along in a progressive fashion, picking up and dropping different elements as it slides glisteningly and blissfully along.

Organic drums with super-subtle delicate feather-touch hi-hats and punchy kicks, punctuated with the occasional muffled tom fill, are the foundation for the track, with plenty of percussion jumping in to add extra spice and flavour to the mix: güiros (or scrapers if you want) provide a flush of white-noise-esque insectoid chattering of humid crepuscularity, lassitudinal open hi-hat sounds shuffle with a sleepy-disco feel, gloriously crafted handclaps alternate with and lock into satisfying snare hits. It's all there.

Add to this the founding lounge-leaning chords of soft electronic piano, caressing your ears like sunlight on skin, syncopated spheroid bloops of synth bass, and slightly disorienting, seemingly directionless gentle rapid-fire horn sounds, and you've got yourself a winner of a track, something fit for the blissful afternoons of summer, and something very worthy of associated with that real-life El Dorado of chilled-out house music, Café del Mar. 8:46 minutes of understated rapture.

It arrives in vinyl form as a single on collective/label Mood Hut (of which Pender Street Steppers are a part). The B side is another very, very tasty number called 'Golden Garden' (place names again – name of a Vietnamese restaurant in Vancouver says Google), a slower track with a steady beat and a definitive groove in the form of bulging peals of bass, all of it veiled with ultra-chill soft synth chords, a 100% atmospheric flute fluttering in towards – listen to a snippet of that below.

  • You can buy 'The Glass City'/'Golden Garden' courtesy of Mood Hut.

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