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Various – Two Syllables Volume 4 review

Artist: Various
Title: Two Syllables Volume 4
Label: First Word
Genre: Broken Beat/Nu Jazz
Format: Digital
Buy From: Juno Download

Frustrated by the lack of opportunity to hear the music they were into, Aly Gillani and Andy H started First Word Records in 2003 to fill the void. Famed for its fusion of jazz and hip-hop, the label has grown from strength to strength. It is also now home to seven fully signed artists, all of whom have helped the First Word’s sound to develop, but all keeping its original foundation. Now, the label returns with the fourth instalment of their acclaimed Two Syllables series.

A true flavour of today’s First Word sound, this fourteen tracks compilation celebrates some of the label’s favourite tracks from recent months in addition to its staple of established artists. Amongst some exclusive cuts, the compilation encompasses the jazz tinged samplings of Mike L, FW favourites such as Kidkanevil, futuristic dance offerings from the likes of Eliphino and even introduces new members of the FW  family in Herma Puma, Red and One Eleven.

Amongst the highlights are veteran Mancunian Greg Wilson’s funky remix of 6ix Toys, Souleance’s new single “Le Plaisir” and Mercury-winning producer Lotek’s future-embracing, hip-hop meet dance offering, “ Control Alt Delete.”

First Word’s output can best be described as modern soul music. Jazz beats are joined at the hip by heavy basslines and elements of funk. Sensitive lyrics and subtle percussion make this a well rounded release, as apt for FW club nights as it for listening on your home stereo. A true reflection of the label itself, Two Syllables 4 has it all.

Review: Tom Jones