Hyenah - The Wish EP on Freerange

Words by: Sean-Michael Yoder
Posted: 31/3/14 7:30

Hyenah makes his Freerange debut with “The Wish” and that’s exactly what this record sounds like – a beginning. There are flashes of brilliance on the record but only in the various remixes and only on occasion. Leading off a single with a dub version is not the best place to start and things only go downhill from there before ending on a high, digital bonus note.

It is rare for a single to feature a dub version on the A-side but on this record there is no definitive original version, only the dub followed by two remixes. That is often typical of a label’s first release by a talented new producer that is still developing a sound. “The Wish” has a detectable Freerange sound that is appropriately deep with touches of house and tech but with few of the hooks that often separate the mediocre from the inspired releases on this label. The biggest element on this track is decent percussion that is good enough for an easy dance floor on a DJ’s home turf but far from outstanding enough to win over a tough crowd.

As counterintuitive as it sounds, it might have been a wiser choice to replace the only original track on this single, “King Kobra”, with yet another remix of the “The Wish”. The bass line here is decent enough with some above average garage elements going on, but the music surrounding it is dry and predictable feeling more like a DJ tool than a proper track. There are way too many examples of this going on in house music, especially with newbie producers, that it really doesn’t need to be said anymore (but we will anyway). Labels need to stop signing tracks like this from up & comers to discourage them from making more (and more…and more) just like it.

French producer Manoo saves the day with two good remixes, including a version that is quite funky, especially in comparison with the other tracks on this single. The “Manoo Likes Apfelschorle” remix is bubbly and effervescent just like the beverage but almost as light and airy. There isn’t much going here except energy, which in the context of this somewhat dreary release is a nice change of pace. The digital only bonus is Manoo’s Darkside mix and is the best of the bunch, bursting with relentless momentum. It’s dance floor candy that sounds good on a system but is also musical enough to standalone. It’s a shame that it wasn’t on the 12” single, but in reality it is not a strong fit with the label’s overall sound and was probably better that it ended up as a download instead.

Artist: Hyenah
Title: The Wish EP
Label: Freerange

TracklistThe Wish (Dub)King KobraThe Wish (Manoo Likes Apfelschorle Remix)
The Wish (Manoo Darkside remix) Digital only


Our Rating: 6/10


Roberto Capuano
Politics Of Dancing
Ralph Lawson