The Belgian disco don releases his first solo single in a couple of years
Collaborations and side projects aside, it's been a year or two since we heard any new music from Aeroplane, but he's back with a vengeance with this release on Defected's newest sub-label, Glitterbox Recordings.
Love On Hold starts with a woman's voice on an answering machine - a trick that used to be quite popular back when 'ansaphones' represented the cutting edge of communications technology (see: The Rah Band's Clouds Across The Moon and countless others). It's a neat, knowing touch that sets out Love On Hold's stall nicely, because what we have here is a loving tribute to the dancefloor sounds of, ooh, roughly 1982-84 - the period when disco was busy morphing into electrofunk and boogie. Hell, he's even got Mtume vocalist Tawatha Agee to sing on it!
As such, if it's a more forward-thinking, leftfield or experimental take on classic disco sounds you're after, this isn't the place to come looking. The chorus is vaguely reminiscent of Evelyn 'Champagne' King's Love Come Down, the vocal harmonies have something of a Cool Notes-y kinda feel, and of course there's the aforementioned Mtume connection and the Rah Band nod. But I can think of no higher praise for Love On Hold than to say you could drop it alongside such classics and I seriously doubt anyone would realise you were playing a tune that only came out this week!
Pure pastiche, yes. But there's nothing wrong with pastiche when it's done well - and this is done very well. Juicy fruit indeed!
Words: Russell Deeks
Release date: 24 March