Ben Watt and Jay Hannan Lazy Dog Deep House Music

If you've ever wondered why the last two albums from Everything But The Girl showed such a strong affection for house, the answer is at Lazy Dog - the Notting Hill basement party EBTG's Ben Watt started up with Jay Hannan in 1998. The pair's DJ-style is strictly soulful garage-house, devoid of the melancholy that is otherwise associated with EBTG's name. Their current double-disc evokes the vibe of a wicked underground jam, where the grooves are pumping, the sounds are seductive and the mood is always on high. The session includes many favourites from the past year, such as Negrocan's "Cada Vez," Willy Washington's "Ain‚t No Running Away;" Kevin Yost's "Another World" and "Always," by ex-Torontonian Lisa Shaw. There a few moments when Watt slips in the cappellas from EBTG classics "The Future of the Future" and "Wrong," taking Tracy Thorn's laments into a completely disco-fied and anthemic direction. This contrast of emotions is also there when the pair drops the Urban Blues Project's "Love Don't Live" and Isolee's "Beau Mot Plage," but as other tracks (like David Anthony's "It's All Right" and Lee John's "Might Power of Love") insist, the thrust of this music is about inspiration, not contemplation. (Astralwerks)