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Latest reviews

Bari meets Detroit on these superb remixes on offer here of Alton Miller & Amp Fiddler's 2010 anthem 'When The Morning Comes'. On the A side, Rydm Sectors deliver a rolling stomper of a rendition that still retains the deepness of the original, followed by the ever reliable Nico Lahs who serves up a dusty, KDJ influenced perspective and proceeds to rework 'Ever Wonder' over on the flipside side in emotive late night fashion. As does local duo KETAMA (Cosmic Rhythm) who hand in a soulful Afro house inspired remix.
Riding SCORCHING hot on the heels of their recent self-titled debut, fans could be forgiven for expecting more of the same from Champyun Clouds' second long player of 2021. A hodgepodge of cutting-room-floor-fodder and experiments that would've been b-sides or Japan-exclusive CD bonus tracks in those halcyon days of physical formats' golden ages is not what we're getting. Let's save those for a deluxe anniversary reissue one day. Nah - sheer, unabashed creativity fuels this album; and weirdly enough, they've managed to branch out in interesting ways while also creating an album that is more immediate and banger-centric. Although Nail's eclectic psych-lounge tendencies and Asa's irreverent poetry and broad Nottingham lilt remain the key touchstones of CC's sound, opener "Check For Silt"s rough drum'n'bass beats offer an immediate and clear sonic progression for the Nottingham duo. The LP ultimately plays a bit like a haunted jukebox in outer space - with elements of dub, britpop, early house, trippy, blissed-out sunshine pop (reminiscent of mid-90s His Name Is Alive at their most Beach Boys-aping), William Orbit-esque 90s psych-pop electronica, distorted glam rock shuffles and garage-y funk. There's a particularly great moment of sequencing at the end of the first half where I got lulled into a state of near-euphoria with the Air-like "The Flowered Crown" before getting slapped 'round the face by "I'm Not Right For You", which sounds like Nile Rogers producing a demo for Sheila & B. Devotion, except he recorded it at the bottom of a well. Sophomore slump? Never heard of him, mate.
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Kettama - Steel City Dance Discs Volume 26
12"
$13.37
Evan Campbell has already delivered some killer club cuts under the Ketamma alias, including solo EPs on Shall Note Fade, G-Town and Homage, and a solid collaborative 12" alongside UK veteran Lone. He's in predictably fine form on this first Steel City Dance Discs outing too, first slamming down some DJ Duke style NYC 'power house' (heavy grooves, soulful vocal samples and addictive piano riffs) on 'Higher (Steel City Power House)', before brilliantly fusing techno and classic house sounds on 'Saint Laurent'. Elsewhere, 'Picanya 2400' is a bouncy, rushing peak-time techno treat, 'Bososoku' is a surging, riff-heavy stomper and 'Move Like Vibert' is a loving, wholehearted tribute to Luke Vibert's bonkers-but-brilliant Wagon Christ project.
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John Patton - Soul Connection
LP
$20.64
American jazz man 'Big' John Patton taste bout his career playing piano but move to the organ in the mid sixties. At that time he worked with Lou Donaldson for Blue Note and ended up releasing some 15 solo albums. By 1984 he was still on top of his game and dropped Soul Connection, a five track suite fusing soul and funk with jazz in deeply vibey fashion. It has become a much sought after classic by those who know but this reissue from Jazz Room means you won't have to play a pretty penny for it. With assistance form a strong backing band, this is one of Patton's funkiest works.
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Sheffield veterans The Black Dog has made some terrific albums over the last three decades, flitting between IDM, dub techno, ambient techno and purist ambient. Their latest full-length epic, which is stretched across four slabs of wax on this limited-edition vinyl version, is another beauty - and a conceptual one at that. Inspired by member Martin Dust's ongoing work photographing Brutalist architecture in Yorkshire, it offers a surprisingly attractive, atmospheric blend of drifting, ethereal soundscapes, throbbing, Tangerine Dream style synthesizer hypnotism, melancholic ambience, glistening electronic interludes and deep dub techno. Given the stark, angular, concrete-clad metallic visual inspiration, it's a surprisingly vivid aural treat.
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Long-serving French funk label Funkysize has not provided much information about this mini-album release, though it appears to be a scaled down compilation featuring previously unheard tracks from its roster of underground artists. There's plenty to set the pulse racing throughout, from the P-funk-influenced disco-funk cheeriness of Magic Juice's 'Fatility' and Bump Squad's Parliament/Funkadelic-esque 'Dexter Street Jock', to the smooth, bass guitar-driven Fatback style goodness of 'Funk Me Tonight' by Rudee Kane, to the talkbox-sporting electrofunk revivalism of Prodige Talkbox's 'It's Yours' and Prince-inspired 'Electrik Boogie'. This is funk, '80s style, laid down in 2021 by talented musicians and vocalists: what's not to like?
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Paul T and Edward Oberon have been working together for years, first appearing together some 10 years ago on Mars before settling into a rhythm on V Recordings. Now though they're stepping things up with a full fat album project, pooling their resources as producers into the mix with Oberon's stunning vocals helping shape the identity of the music overall. There's also a strong cast of collaborators passing through on Strange Days, from MC Fats and Cleveland Watkiss to Serum and Lorna King. This is D&B that leaps across boundaries, keeping one foot in the club while opening up to structured songwriting, trying different approaches across the run time and creating a varied, accomplished record.
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Xi - SUED 011
12"
$11.15
XI is a collaboration between DJ Fett Burger and SVN. They must have some fixation on the number 11, as their previous drops on Going Good and Sex Tags UFO were given the eleventh catalogue number and now this new joint appears on SVN's own SUED label as SUED11. By rights then it should have come out in 2015, but here we are and whatever the reasoning, the music is what matters, and it's predictably delicious. From springy boxjam house business to blown out after-hours cruisers, tweaked out electro techno and blissfully blurry Balearic, there's plenty of ground covered here by two artists with an imperious track record and impeccable taste.
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