Profile: ÜBER≡TONE

Formed in 2011 with members from London, Brighton, South Africa & West Africa, ÜBER≡TONE specialise in a heady fusion of Deep Funky House and melodic electropop, or "Synth-driven Human House Music."

Definition: über-/ˈo͞obər/
Prefix: Denoting an outstanding or supreme example of a particular kind of person, sound or thing.

Definition: tone/tōn/
Noun: The overall quality of a musical or vocal sound.

ÜBER≡TONE's sonic offerings include a blend of popular covers and superb original songs, and with their non-stop, DJ format live set, vibrant onstage energy, and distinctive lead vocalist, their wide range of musical and international influences heighten the thrill of their music and their awesome live performances.

The band are currently going out as a 3-piece, the excellent vocal skills of Dobi Kwe backed by the superbly driven musicianship of Steve Brandwood and Shaun Lee. ÜBER≡TONE had been up until recently gigging under the name Play Date for a good period of time, but decided to 're-brand' last year, and to dovetail this with a somewhat richer and more dancey sound. The slant here and now is very much that of a band that's all about live performance and bringing it on with a fantastic atmosphere.

That's not to say there's nothing happening in the recording department, their EP 1 is up for preview on SoundCloud and hopefully the near future will see the 4-tracker appear as the band's first official release. I can see it doing well on a vinyl pressing especially.

Personally, I find myself liking the tunes here a lot more than I imagined I would do (as I'm normally something of a wall-of-sound guitar fan). However, it's really not hard to get drawn in to the groove of the tracks. Something About Ü especially does it for me, it's got a lovely absorbing feel to it that makes me think it could easily be pulled out live into and epic dancefloor filler that mysteriously halts the passage of time.

Hit The Floor too certainly has to be praised for a wonderful '808 State' moment mid-way through. I enjoyed an unexpected flashback to a mis-spent youth right there!

There's something about the final two tunes that puts me in mind of some of the best output from what was once called 'Acid Jazz' - but blended perfectly with great funk lines and a marvellous swell of house beats grounding the bottom end of the sound. Absolutely a brilliant combination that, to used a tired but effective cliché, can simply be described as 'ear-candy'. The band's tagline is completely correct - A super-smooth blend of easily danceable electronica that retains a real human feel throughout.

Unfortunately for me, I missed ÜBER≡TONE's last gig (kicking myself for that) which was at Brighton's Komedia Club on New Year's Eve (Electric Cocktail). And judging from reports of the night - it looks like I definitely need to get out there and make it to the next date. Sooner rather than later I sincerely hope.

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