It was not long ago Jesse Rose, a man who has continued to champion and release some of the underground House world's finest artists and music - had the epiphany that so much of what his labels' back catalogs contain is timeless and pure in its quality. When Play It Down congregated to decide who best to kick off the new Label Mates compilation series, which was to put a new sheen on the fifteen years of music Jesse has released - the choice was easy: Brillstein. Born and bred in sunny Los Angeles, Brillstein contains a combination of deep love and knowledge of music with a keen ear and refreshing outlook. It was obvious Brillstein would champion the catalogs - and that he did. Having been with Play It Down from the first ever inklings of the Brillstein moniker (where his pseudonym "Thee Mike B" has won him accolades of LA's Best DJ and appreciation from every single international DJ ever), Brillstein has released his first EP "Back To Bed" and been an important part of the label, from tracks to remixes to parties and beyond.
Throughout the last fifteen years Jesse Rose has not only created some milestone moments in house music as a producer, remixer and DJ but has also supported a huge amount of up-coming talent with his labels Front Room, Made to Play, Play it Down and A-SIDED (which is now incorporated into Play It Down). His love for finding new sounds and helping talent come through can been seen throughout the labels: starting with Dave Taylor aka Solid Groove's first mega hit 'This Is Sick' and Jesse's own collaboration with Henrik Schwarz 'Stop, Look and Listen' on Front Room, Riva Starr - 'I Was Drunk', Black Rose - 'Anthem' or Round Table Knights - 'Calypso' on Made to Play, Oliver Dollar 'Doin' Ya Thang', Dansson & Marlon Hoffstadt - 'Shake That', Brillstein - 'Back to Bed' album and Christian Nielsen - 'Do You Mind' all on Play It Down. These artists and tracks didn't just happen; Jesse put time into helping develop both the artists and the tracks, helping build and sustain the careers of artists from Riva Starr and Oliver Dollar to Claude Vonstroke and Axel Boman to name but few. Label Mates is a catalog of House and Techno history from the point of view of Jesse Rose. It's at home in Detroit and Chicago but also on BBC Radio 1. It's from events around the world, from residencies at Berlin's Panorama Bar and London's Fabric to festival appearances from Mysteryland to Summadaze. Every artist chosen to do a 'Label Mates' compilation can find a unique way to pick the tracks from the catalog that personally represent them: where Brillstein heads to Chicago grooves, Christian Nielsen will go to the techno elements and Oliver Dollar can find a treasure trove of his own discography. It's a way to shed new light on timeless classics, dig deep into the crates, and let artists tell a story. It's as much a compilation series as it is a moment in time to reflect on what has been a momentous fifteen years for Jesse as a label head and A&R.
'I'm quite certain I've put more thought and time into this mix than anything previous. Trying my damnedest to intricately weave the story together, while paying proper tribute to each track without being too obvious or linear in the execution. The catalog of each label is so impressive and brought back strong musical memories. Compiling it was a blast, digging through dozens of my favorite producers most legendary, or sometimes even overlooked tracks. All of them nestled in over 15 years of consistently funky house music... It was no small task to narrow that tracklist down, I promise. I even got to throw a few of my own lil' nuggets in there (including some exclusive edits.) It's an honor to be the first of our talented crew to have a go at the Label Mates concept and I like to think I set a high benchmark. I can't wait to see what everyone else does!' - Brillstein
"It's mad to me. feels like just last year I started Front Room - not a decade and a half ago. When I got hold of the whole catalog and sat with it, really it felt like my biggest achievement to have, with the labels, supported some of my now favorite artists and some of my favorite records. There's of course no stopping as there is always new talent to support, but for a moment late on a Tuesday night sat in my studio, I heard my adult life in music. And I have to say. it felt good." - Jesse Rose