Maya Jane Coles' second single stands apart from the rest of the tech house scene
There’s a lot to love about Maya Jane Coles. In the realm of ‘Tech House,’ or at least the most popular 2017 definition of the genre most popularly now used to categorise the sound of parties like Paradise, Music On or Elrow, she remains a unique entity in a scene populated mostly by identikit producers. While other ‘Tech House’ producers obsess over an almost feverish race to see who can devise the biggest breakdown, Coles prioritises musicality over muscle. ‘Weak/Werk’ is the second single from her forthcoming album, ‘Take Flight,’ and is just one in a list of big moves the artist is currently making. This summer the producer toured as support DJ for Depeche Mode, an accolade that illustrates just how far she’s come as an artist since her breakthrough hit ‘What They Say’ in 2010 (a time when the major players of 'Tech House' were were commonly described as 'Deep House').
She is clearly playing on a bigger field to many of the rest of her contemporaries and appealing to an audience that lies beyond the claustrophobic pulpit of clubland. But is her music? On ‘Weak’ her approach to writing songs is ambitious. The reverb soaked melancholy of ‘Weak’ lies somewhere between the sound of the The xx and Massive Attack but falls short of feeling as momentous as the best works of either act. ‘Werk’ is the club bound B side, that’s a little more by numbers MJC house: sparse beats and sanitised production that is neither offensive nor screaming for attention.
Ibiza Voice score: 7/10