Last updated on October 19, 2020
Shingo Nakamura’s deep house was the music that really got me into electronica, so I have a soft spot in my heart for the genre. A.M.R‘s A Place For Everything is absolutely excellent deep house. It’s a record that takes everything that makes deep house great and implements it perfectly. He doesn’t mess with the formula, but adds his own melodies and sounds to the mix to make it his own.
After a neat intro, “Crystal Fountain” really kicks in the record; the rubbery bass, the driving (yet not harsh) beats, the chilled-out atmosphere contrasted with the punchy tempos–it’s all there. The vocals float above the locked-in mix, admitting a mysterious, elegant vibe. A.M.R is not afraid to drop out the beat for effect, and in the middle of the song, it’s just vocals, piano, strings and light background static. It’s a gentle, hypnotic breakdown before the beat comes back in big and bold for the finale.
That model holds throughout the rest of the album: strong driving beats, strings (“Light-Years From Here”), impressive melodies, and clever arrangement moments. “Fireflies” has a short, syncopated percussion clip that serves as a hook; “Sailor’s Cry” and “We Fell Out of Love” make impressive use of female and male vocal melodies (respectively) throughout. “Hidden Sun” amps up the drama with chant/sung choral work as the vocal element. “In the Mornin'” is a highlight, with the melodic keys and the sampled vocal giving the piece a friendly, fun vibe without leaving the orbit of the deep house planet.
Each of the tracks (except the intro) are fairly long pieces, and yet the album closes with three extended mixes that amp up the club-friendly nature of the work. So in addition to being really solid, it’s really long–you get a lot of A.M.R work on this release. This strong, engaging deep house collection is one that I will be coming back to for a long time.