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Ezel & Rona Ray’s ‘Take Me Home LP’: A Soulful Journey Through House Music.

Kono Vidovic January 23, 2024 67 11 5


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Hey there, Dirty Disco family and fellow rhythm aficionados! It’s your dedicated DJ, weaving through the vibrant tapestry of house music to bring you something extraordinary. Today, we’re delving into a masterpiece that’s more than just an album, it’s a narrative of sound and emotion. Imagine this: a tranquil evening, your headphones become a portal, and as the first track of Ezel & Rona Ray’s ‘Take Me Home LP’ envelops you, the rest of the world just melts away. This soul-stirring journey, released under the iconic Bayacou Records, struck a chord with me, reminiscent of a night where I got lost in the beats at a coastal gig, with nothing but the stars above and the rhythm below.

This album by Ezel & Rona Ray isn’t just a set of tracks; it’s a voyage into their artistic universe. Each song unfolds a unique story, immersing you deeper into their creative essence. Their music, a harmonious blend of house and soulful house, echoes those magical moments where life’s chaos fades into the background.

Join us as we explore this profound collaboration between Ezel & Rona Ray, a duo that has already captured hearts with their singles and is now ready to unveil their magnum opus. Stay tuned for an exclusive track talk where we dive into the heart of each song, exploring the inspirations and stories behind this remarkable album. Trust me, it’s an adventure you won’t want to miss.

Ezel & Rona Ray – Take Me Home LP Track Talk.

1. Somewhere (intro).

E: We were solid in having a formal intro to the album, who knows maybe one day we play as a live show, and as such this idea came forward inspired a little bit in sonic aesthetics from the UK group Disclosure

R: When I heard the demo it gave me amusement park vibes after sunset with all the neon lights, bumper cars, and roller coasters that give you a melancholic feeling of wanting to be a child again.

2.  Forest Gump. 

E: I’ve been sitting around this instrumental that gives a bit of throwback 90s house vibes and honestly she just murdered it as one of my favorite songs in the whole thing, fresh AF.

R: As the chord progression gave me a visual of a cartoonish suspect tip-toeing while trying to get away from the inspector (I watched way too much of ‘Pink Panther’ lol), the lyrics went in the direction of a girl’s chaotic thought process on the first date, which somehow gave me a Forrest Gump reference in the second part of the song. The changes in Ezel’s instrumentals always trigger the change in lyrics/melodies for me, that’s what always happens when we create songs together. 

3.  Floating.

E: For this one, we had the amazing live horn section that plays with Natasha Diggs at their Soul in the Horn events recording some tasty riffs as a call and response to the incredible Rona’s melodies. This one seems to be a huge favorite among the new and unreleased songs that the album brought.

R: Again, the song idea came from the feeling. The instrumental with these wonderful horns gave me a feeling of floating on the cloud, above problems and obstacles. Just a short break of peace in the chaotic world.

4. Hard to Stay Away.

E: Everywhere I go as a DJing person people have conferred on me that this is one of their favorite songs and this was Rona and I’s first collaboration together long before the thought of putting together an album. The simplicity and cheer and blissfulness of it always grab me. 

R: One of my favorite songs when it comes to chord progression, the instrumental gave such a great base for a strong melody. 

5. History Repeating.

E: Some of the songs in the album came out previously as singles and this one in particular had a huge impact in the spring/summer of last year. Being our fourth collaboration together I feel I kinda alerted people that we were up to something bigger and they were right as the album is here now encompassing the whole journey. 

R: Was written in a state of complete uncertainty when I moved to another country. A feeling, that all doors are closing and new ones are not yet found and you just don’t know what to do, cause every step you take is followed with 2 steps back and I’m not a fan of this dance. I was tired of history repeating. At the same time, it was related to certain historical events happening at this time, which also got me quite emotionally involved. 

6. Threes Don’t Hide underground.

E: I think we both share a vision of one day doing other music styles besides the ones we are mostly known for and during the creative process of this album, a thought of making a sort of non-house RnB type of EP came about. It was in the process of kinda feeling out that potential that we wrote this song and as we moved more into finishing the house album we were unsure if to include it but we did. I feel for the mere reason this album is like a picture in time of all the things we put together musically including diving into attempting to do other styles that we both love.  

R: This song was my breath of fresh air. I’m grateful to Ezel for giving me a chance to express myself outside the genre of house. I come from a complex musical background and I love music that makes you think. At this time I was simply obsessed with Hiatus Kaiyote’s music and this was my attempt to do something that was more me. This song is about a fear of being misunderstood when you are exposing your true self to the world.  

7. Endless Summer.

E: Hah, this one is one of my favorites as well. If you know anything about me, I have a proven track record of always fiddling with one of my favorite influences which is sort of boogie funk and disco from that late 70s and early 80s pocket. On this one, I proposed to Rona the idea of going there as I felt whatever she came up with was gonna be very interesting.  I feel the song sounds classic in a good way and hopefully it shows once again a little bit of our range besides the clubbier stuff.

R: This is another track that gave me a feeling of being in a peaceful, carefree environment that you don’t wanna leave. A state of mind where you wanna be all the time, even when your physicality is stuck in traffic on your way to work. I hope this song will give a listener a sonic ‘retreat’. 

8. Don’t Know Yet.

E: Another big winner for us back in 2022. I feel this one allowed us to start getting some praise from the top world-renowned DJs as far as how they felt about the distinct sound found in our collaborations. At that time Beyonce had hinted at her house-inspired affair with the “Break My Soul” jam and that prompted me to try something with that infamous bass organ sound which served as the starting point of the groove of this song. 

R: The song is inspired by the doubts you’re experiencing when in a new relationship, overthinking, trust issues, and slight brain malfunction when you are infatuated. 

9. If I Am Being Real.

E:  Just organically I feel the album took under its wing an undeniable UK house feel or at least we were out to fiddle with our interpretation of it. I feel the idea for this one was to create a little more contrast and range with regards to the previous more RnB / soulful-oriented exercises and try to do something that felt more electronic while keeping within range of the sound we’ve been putting together.  You can sense yet again a hint of disclosure vibes on the production side of this one.

R: My favorite ‘feel good’ song on the album. It’s just simple and on point. It makes me wanna dance! 

10. Take Me Home.

E: By the time this song came to be, we already felt the album was already done but something kept pushing back to the drawing board as far as needing just 1 extra single before the album release that could serve as a clear continuation of the sounds we’ve been offering our audience before.  The way Rona and I work, we would just feed each other visions first and hopefully that would spark a little music exercise on my part that she feels is worthy of pursuing just to see where we land. In this case when I got back the vocal writing and performance from her even though the music demo wasn’t exactly where it should be I got excited to elevate it to the point it could become the potential lead in a single of the album and it did. Conceptually my view of the album being named after this song is because in a sense by collaborating as tight as we have done, writing this album together, and making these songs we have in a sense gone through a journey of many years with people getting behind us. So the “Take Me Home” aspect makes allegory to a sense of yearning for that moment of completion which is now here. 

R: It’s when you, for whatever reason, stop talking to someone close to you, that only person you feel safe to share with, and suddenly home doesn’t feel like home anymore. Take me to that safe space cause I feel restless and hollow and I don’t want to feel this way anymore.

11. Nothing is What It Seems.

E: This idea came with a string of new demos after we did “History Repeating” we wanted to try new sounds/styles within the same framework of dance music. Not being afraid of anything (Both Aries) we went in and did this piece that was reminiscent of 2Step vibes once again nodding into that big UK dance sound influence we both sort of navigate into. 

R: And nothing’s what it looks like. Just a line my dad says a lot. Sometimes as a joke, sometimes quite seriously. He taught me not to trust anything I hear/see and always do my research. 

12. No Gravity.

E: Technically the most interesting song in the whole album. 5./4 over 4/4. People who don’t know about technicalities in music metering are always hmm… There is a little something odd about this one. I don’t know what it is but I love it like it appears to not have a “center” or “gravity” rhythmically. Again, I can’t overlook the genius of Rona to depart from this that she knows technically and poetically brings a whole new level of meaning with her songwriting. 

R: A legendary 5/4 ‘No Gravity’ originally was way slower and wasn’t supposed to be a house tune. It was one of the few ‘experimental’ tracks we did with Ezel. These sorts of records are usually harder to navigate when you are collaborating from different continents, but I’m extremely proud of this record! 

13. Can We Love and Be Free.

E: This and the other non-house jams could be seen as fillers in the context of a “house-themed” album but in my view, they ain’t. They are there for a reason as I feel they complete our story and give a nice little space for re-introspection outside of the thumping 4×4 beat. What Rona manages to convey in these songs is nothing short of magical, I am talking about the emotions, the poetry, all those feelings that take lyrical shape through her careful and sensible craft. 

R: It’s pretty much all in the title. 

14. Separate.

E: Started as a clubbier, more deep-oriented cut but in the final stages getting it closer to the other more soulful-oriented vibes or at least aiming at a middle point possessed the way to give it a green light and included it in the album. It’s such a worthy song in my view, unapologetic melodramatic, balances well against the more uplifting type of vibes you find on the album. 

R: The torture to end something that you know should have been ended yesterday, but the longer you wait, the harder it is. Something that no longer serves you but keeps lingering in your life, stealing your peace. 

15. UR in Control.

E: I feel this one is the last to remind me that it almost doesn’t get included on the album and what an oversight that would’ve been. Shouts to Rona’s mom who insisted we should be included and that resonated with me at just the right time for me to revisit it and give it its final touches. This song is also special because it belongs to that group of songs in the album that gives the audience a powerful spiritual meaning and teaching. In that sense, I feel Rona channeled some high vibes on this one and people are starting to perceive when it gets played.

R: That uplifting song that I needed to hear myself. That hype-up singing and dancing in front of the mirror we all do sometimes. That reminder to stop whining and start doing something, taking chances, steps, speaking up, being fearless! 

Final notes:

E: Want to give thanks to the people taking some time to read about our album. It was a pleasure and extremely satisfying experience to collaborate with Rona and create this tapestry of music that I hope will stand the test of time and help us elevate both our musical journeys into even higher altitudes as this is only the start. We benefit with gratitude from your love and support. Thank you!

Conclusion.

And as we wrap up this track talk, I’m reminded of a little anecdote from my early DJing days. There was this one night, in a small, packed club where the air was electric with anticipation. I dropped a track so resonant, so in tune with the crowd’s vibe, that for a moment, time stood still. That’s the power of music, the power that Ezel & Rona Ray have captured in this album.

So, to all you music lovers, if you’re seeking an escape, a journey through sound and soul, ‘Take Me Home LP’ is your ticket. A big thank you to Ezel & Rona Ray for this musical odyssey, and to you, my Dirty Disco family, for joining me on this exploration. Don’t forget to check out the full release and support these incredible artists. You can buy the album at Traxsource. Let’s keep the beats alive and the soul in house music thriving!

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Kono Vidovic at Dirty Disco
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Kono Vidovic

DJ | MUSIC CURATOR & SELECTOR | PODCAST MAKER | BLOGGER Professional online interpreneur. Coffee practitioner. Electronic music culture maven. Total music guru. Infuriatingly humble problem solver. Food & sports fanatic.

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