De Lux x Love Is Hard Work

"Love Is Hard Work" is a continuous 29 minute recording and something that Sean Guerin from De Lux has been wanting to make for a while. According to Guerin: "Before De Lux, I used to write long songs, but never really finish them. Written and recorded in mid 2021 for two months, it felt like a breeze to make 'Love Is Hard Work' because I had been thinking and talking about it for so long. Influenced by a lot of artists from ‘79-‘82, like Peter Gordon, Electric Mind, Evans Pyramid or Dizzy K, the track is intended to feel like a continuous flow of dance music. Instead of a stream of consciousness in lyricism, this is more of a stream of consciousness in instrumentation and songwriting; where ideas flow from one to the other without too much thought." 

Purchase the limited edition vinyl, download or stream the track.

De Lux x Idjut Boys

L.A.'s De Lux are a post-disco dance-punk DIY duo that sound like they could have come out of 1979 or 1982 just as easily as today. Founders and multi-instrumentalists Sean Guerin and Isaac Franco didn’t meet so much as simply appear to each other, sometime before high school ended and after learning to correctly fall off skateboards began. Even at age 18, however, it was the kind of connection that had been years in the making. Sean had been writing songs since he was 15 and had spent recent years recording and re-recording his own songs. And Isaac had been on a strict diet of classic and obscure disco and boogie music since he too was 15, figuring out the original source of hip-hop’s greatest samples thanks to an older brother with a DJ sideline and an enviable collection. They both were after the same thing in music—the groove, they say, where the bass and the beat align in a perfect way that makes you want a song to go on forever.

Ten years on from their well-received debut album, Voyage, the band now has four full length releases under their belt, including 2022's "Do You Need A Release?" Funny, profound & easy to groove to, De Lux has a host of influences ranging from 80’s new wave of the Tom Tom Club to the experimentation and imagery of The Clash’s “Sandinista!” to the cerebral DFA disco era.

Dan Tyler and Conrad McDonnell, aka Idjut Boys, are an English duo whose dub-heavy home songs incorporate their playful love of life. The duo met in the late '80s in Cambridge discovering that they shared a passion for similar music. Soon after, both moved to London and established the U-Star parties. The Idjuts' fusion of dub, house, and techno soon caught on and landed them gigs DJing all over the world.

McDonnell and Tyler established U-Star Records in 1993, releasing their debut 12" Idjut Boy. They continued releasing numerous 12"s throughout the 90's up to the current period consisting of original productions, along with remixes & re-edits of obscure and not-so-obscure material by other artists and a handful of DJ mixes. A proper Idjut Boys studio album, Cellar Door, was released on Smalltown Supersound in 2012. This was followed by Versions, an album of reworks of material from throughout the duo's career, in 2015.

On this 12" vinyl, the Idjuts remix a single, "What's Life" from De Lux's most recent "Do You Need A Release?"



De Lux x Jason Bentley


“De Lux have concocted the perfect mix of disco, post-punk and funk"

"New Summers" by De Lux - originally from their latest album Do You Need A Release? gets a reconstruction by Jason Bentley

Jason Bentley is a Los Angeles based DJ and Grammy nominated record Producer.   During his tenure as Music Director of acclaimed SoCal radio station KCRW, Jason consistently supported De Lux as host of the daily music program Morning Becomes Eclectic and ongoing Saturday night mix show Metropolis.  

“I love the band” remarked Jason “and after hearing “New Summers” I became obsessed with the idea of a different song arrangement - not so much a remix - but rearranging existing elements. The song already has all this smoldering Disco energy, and I wanted to bring that out more and shape it so the song hit differently. I reached out to the band with the idea, and thankfully the guys let me pull apart the original multi-tracks and create the version I was hearing in my head."

Listen to Do You Need A Release? here.

De Lux x Do You Need A Release?

After writing, performing, recording, and producing three albums themselves, De Lux have traded their typically hermetic recording process at their Burbank studio for a more collaborative experience. The result is their most dynamic record yet, titled Do You Need A Release? Founding members Sean Guerin and Isaac Franco invited their live band to record to tape at Jonny Bell’s Jazzcat Studio in Long Beach, CA. While De Lux has always been able to write immediately danceable and quirky pop songs with a strong dose of wit, these recordings get the sonic boost they deserve to match the quality and camaraderie of their intense and acclaimed live performances. 
On De Lux’s first two albums the duo tackled the innocence of youth and generational anxiety. More Disco Songs About Love flipped the switch to create an ambitious party record not about youthful musings and insecurity, but reflection and gratitude for the things and people they love. This go-around Sean and Isaac are still funny and profound and their sound remains easy to groove to, but the band is more influenced by the fun 80’s new wave of the Tom Tom Club and the experimentation and imagery of The Clash’s “Sandinista!” than cerebral DFA era disco.
Do You Need A Release? Is De Lux at their poppiest, their prettiest, danciest, but also their most abrasive. The record is built on an uncomfortable bed of tension which when released is immediately satisfying in unpredictable and surprising ways. The verses often pummel you with aggressive beats and grooves only to blossom into open, encouraging, and even angelic refrains. Or the other way around, like in “New Summers”, where the choruses don’t resolve and the drums are a never ending build up that disorients you—reminding you that summer will never be the same again. Similarly on the title track, a relentless glitch of a guitar chord repeats over a drum beat that sounds like it’s trying to break into your house. The band finally breaks the tension with a simple mantra: “Open, open you’re ready now.” These ebbs and flows are embedded in their new approach to songwriting which owes itself to another new variable: a Yamaha P2 upright piano made of walnut. 
De Lux’s sound has been built on iconic synths such as the Juno and Dx 7 and while those instruments are still trademarks of their identity, Sean wanted a place to sit without plugging in to write songs he could construct more organically. Playing the piano allowed him to create more emotive performances, playing with the give and take of the piano keys which lead to the new album’s organized mess of often beautiful but dissonant song structures. On the album’s opener, “They Call This Love”, it sounds like the band is announcing a special bulletin report for the upcoming apocalypse. Arpeggiated synths weave through beautiful vocal harmonies behind Sean’s urgent warning to beware of controlling lovers and then drops into an almost EDM like jam only to end with a gentle piano chord progression. Like a glimmering rainbow after a raging storm. 
The piano also reveals Sean at his most vulnerable: there are two shockingly pretty ballady tunes on the LP that feature Sean’s unique style of piano playing and his strange sense of melody and bizarre lyrical subject matter. “Morning Misses Me” is a song as seemingly silly as waking up too late, but it puts goose pimples on your goose pimples, making your eyes wet with its honesty and clarity. It’s a track about trying your hardest to be someone different, but ultimately deciding to accept who you are and always have been. It ends with a question mark of a chord just like the title of the album. 
Sean says that the record is filled with questions and not answers, but each riddle is its own answer as pseudo philosophical as that can sound… His lyrics are at once filled with uncertainty and affirmation. The irony is that the grooves are as solid as they’ve ever been and the band is pushing themselves harder than they ever have. Striving to make something danceable and beautiful and important. De Lux matters because they make music to dance to and be inspired by—they exist to ask us the questions we’re often too afraid to move our bodies to. That may sound hyperbolic but their ambitions are not an exaggeration. 
De Lux x They Call This Love

"As a lover of music and skateboarding, I thought They Call This Love would be a great song to mesh the two worlds. I've picked up skating again for the past 2 years and have met incredible people. Grabbed some of them for a session in downtown LA, as well as a bunch of high schools and notable spots.  Skateboarding is so community based that it felt good to just go out with everyone and have an adventure. The song is about love, the ups and downs, the good and bad, and the hard work it requires. Landing a trick after 40 tries in 90 degree heat only to have all your buds there to cheer you on, I think represents love in so many ways." - Sean Guerin of De Lux 

De Lux is out with a new single ("They Call This Love") today in anticipation of their upcoming "Do You Need A Release."