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Let It Be
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Let It Be (12")
Cat: 2032 BLACK. Rel: 04 Aug 14
  1. Let It Be
  2. That Feeling
Review: Having teased us all last year with "Fresh Fromage", Darkest Pumpkin make their first proper debut for 2000 Black and it's a bit special. Taking the rudiments and shimmering electronic soul of contemporary / cosmic disco and subverting them with techniques most favourably spotted in the new-beat scene, both "Let It Be" and "That Feeling" are as refreshing as they are accomplished. "Let It Be" does a really cool cut-up thing before the luxurious electro boogie bassline swathes into the blend with serious sassiness, softening the pendulum-like hypnosis of the vocal loop. "That Feeling" sees more really cool sample creativity over a slightly techier, sparkling arpeggio that's kinda reminiscent of Kirk DeGiorgio. Both kill it.
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The More Things Stay The Same
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Cat: BLACKLP 004. Rel: 06 Jul 15
Broken Beat/Nu Jazz
  1. Feminist Meetings (5:35)
  2. It Don't Get No Better (3:54)
  3. Star Track 7 (6:01)
  4. Greed & Power (4:40)
  5. Keep It Moving (3:25)
  6. Shine A Light (3:04)
  7. Help Me Out (4:41)
  8. We've Been Here Before (6:00)
  9. The Stronghold Of Lithius (3:26)
  10. The Middle Ground (feat TY) (3:34)
Review: Conscious pilot Dego looks deep into his past, present and future on his second artist album The More Things Stay The Same. Recruiting fellow musicians for the ride - Kaidi Tatham, Mr Mensah, Matt Lord - Dego's concept is understand the duality of truth and how it's just as painful as it is enriching. The end result of this philosophy is a collection of timeless compositions that flip between jazz-tickled highlight ("Greed & Power"), early zeroes Bugz-style buzz grooves ("It Don't Get No Better") and velvet, drum-heavy soul ("Shine A Light"). A true hero of proper UK music, Dego delivers once again... Pay attention!
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A Wha' Him Deh Pon?
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Cat: BLACKCD 007. Rel: 04 Jul 11
Broken Beat/Nu Jazz
  1. Start A New (feat Sharlene Hector)
  2. Sparkling Minds (feat Georgina Anne Muldrow)
  3. Da Fuzz (feat Lord Amercy)
  4. All That She Knows (feat Obenwa)
  5. We Are Virgo (feat Kaidi Tatham)
  6. They Never Know (feat Sarina Leah)
  7. Until It's Done (feat Nia Andrews)
  8. Whatever (instrumental)
  9. Interlude (feat Taylor Mcferrin)
  10. Love & Hate You (feat Obenewa)
  11. Monday Blues
  12. It's Nothing (feat Nadine Charles)
  13. Pushing You To Begin (feat Ferraz)
  14. Wispa Bar
  15. No Bother Talk It
  16. Right From Wrong (feat Tosin Tao)
  17. Not In My Disco
  18. Dego's Dancehall Cry
  19. Late Night Fright
  20. The Monach
A Thorough Study
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Cat: 2031 BLACK. Rel: 08 Sep 14
Broken Beat/Nu Jazz
  1. A Thorough Study
  2. Put It All Out There
  3. A Thorough Study (2000Black remix)
Review: This is the sort of back scratching we can get behind! After New Yorker Drew Lustman issued some typically nuts Dego material on his blossoming Blueberry Records label, the favour is repaid as the London legend issues this excellent 12" from the man also known as FaltyDL. Lustman's always made his love for the output of Dego McFarlane well known and his productions on A Thorough Study feel very much at home on 2000Black. The title cut could easily be a production for some underground 90s R&B cut, there's a really Teddy Riley dip to the groove here, whilst "Put It All Out There" is a typical FaltyDL polyrhythmic lick through jazzy shades that you can see Floating Points or Theo Parrish being charmed by. Man like Dego rounds out the release with a wonderfully rich and musically rewarding rework of "A Thorough Study".
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Fresh Fromage
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Cat: 2033 BLACK. Rel: 13 Oct 14
Broken Beat/Nu Jazz
  1. Fresh Fromage
  2. Someting
Review: Yes! It's time for another Shokazulu transmission from Mr Kaidi Tatham which naturally arrives via the good ship 2000 Black. If you checked last year's debut Shokazulu long player for the label, you know this Tatham project perfectly embodies the musical spirit of 2000 Black, linking themes of the past with contemporary production methods on cuts that are forever forward thinking. Don't think that's changed on this latest 2000 Black drop from Shokazulu! Lead cut "Fresh Fromage" sees Tatham calling on close friends Mr Mensah and Mark Force and the vibe feels that much stronger for it. Commencing in true '70s jazz fusion style, the cut goes up a level when Force's drums come in and the full weight of the arrangement is revealed. The tempo drops on the flip as Tatham goes on a solo trip into blunted and bruk hip hop with "Something".
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Where Was I?
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Cat: 2035 BLACK. Rel: 25 May 15
  1. Where Was I? (4:48)
  2. Cannes (3:50)
  3. Who Loves You? (4:12)
Review: Woah.... Dego's 2000 Black pull out a most unexpected treat with some productions from the studio of Dominic 'Domu' Stanton!!!! The music world was a lesser place when Domu decided to retire from production duties citing creative burnout back in 2009, but he's evidently found new inspiration in his sound which has resulted in these killer Sonar's Ghost cuts! Opening track "Where Was I?" is most appropriately titled, rolling out on a bed of chopped up breakbeats and swerving synth lines that sound like vintage Domu. However, the marauding bassline that comes in midway offers a sense of freshness. "Cennes" sees Stanton toy around with drums at a blistering footwork tempo, the ferociousness offset by some delicious harmonies underneath, whilst "Who Loves You?" expertly chops up a vocal sample over some frenetic drum programming.
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Tatham Mensah Lord & Ranks
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Cat: BLACKCD 008. Rel: 19 Nov 12
Broken Beat/Nu Jazz
  1. Seven4
  2. Naive (Fool That I May Be) (feat Bembe Segue)
  3. Celebrate
  4. Badly Persuaded (feat Eric Lau)
  5. Stars Shine For You (feat Mark Force)
  6. Mr Pickles
  7. Don't Give Up
  8. Mind Skies (feat Sarina Leah)
  9. Missing In Action
  10. Get Up Lift Up Yourself (feat Ferraz)
  11. You Know Its Like That (feat Nadine Charles)
  12. KENNY!!!
  13. THB
  14. Quantum Shift
  15. Ooh Monseigneur
  16. Tredjanous (interlude)
Review: Once upon a time, this kind of gathering of broken beat and nu-jazz masters - not to mention the stellar cast list of guest instrumentalists and vocalists - would have caused major ripples. As it is, Tatham, Mensah, Lord & Ranks will probably fall through the cracks. That would be a crying shame, because it's actually pretty tasty. Soulful, deep, jazz-flecked and brilliantly produced, it sounds like a long lost collaboration between IG Culture, Herbie Hancock and Bugz In The Attic (unsurprising since it features many Bugz collaborators and members, from Mark De Clive-Lowe and Bembe Segue, to Mark Force and, of course, Kaidi Tatham). Highlights are plentiful, from the liquid funk of "Mr Pickles", to the sweet modern soul of "Get Up, Lift Up", via the floor-friendly pulse of "Kenny".
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