Hailing from New York City’s underground house scene, Slow Hands, aka Ryan Cavanagh, makes deep house music to dim the lights to. His tracks are sultry, laid-back affairs, with atmospheres as balmy as midsummer rooftop parties. Behind the decks, he keeps it deep and weird, bumping through subtle but epic sets that have made him a favorite at Wolf + Lamb, the dark and soulful Brooklyn label that Resident Advisor ranked #3 of 2009. With only a handful of releases to his name, Slow Hands is one of house music’s newest virtuosos.
Slow Hands debuted in 2009 with “Fast Tongue,” a punchy slow jam that saw release on Significant Others EP, Wolf + Lamb’s widely praised mini-comp. Later that year, Slow Hands outdid himself with his remix of No Regular Play’s “Ladyluck,” a track whose warbled crooning made perfect fodder for his languid production style. Both tracks were praised in print and online, described by RA as “make-out disco” that “sorely longs to be played outdoors.” 2010 will see several more releases by Cavanagh, as Slow Hands as well as various other eclectic alter-egos.
For an artist with such distinctive style, Ryan Cavanagh is surprisingly new to electronic music. He studied classical guitar and composition until 2001, at which point he dropped out of school, bought a copy of Logic and dove head first into house and techno. He started DJing constantly around Baltimore and NYC, and eventually got noticed by Gadi Mizrahi of Wolf + Lamb, who gladly took Cavanagh under his wing. He still keeps busy with a number of different side projects, like Male Madame on Fade Records, and Worst Friends, his spastic experimental group on Moodgadget. But Slow Hands shows Cavanagh doing what he does best: working with sexy rhythms that take their time, letting the groove unfurl with ease.