Review: If you've ever tried to track down Gaston's obscure funk-soul album My Queen, you'll know that second-hand copies of the 978 set regularly change hands online for eye-watering amounts of money. Happily, Soul Brother Records has managed to license it and have pressed 1,500 new copies of a special Record Store Day 2020 edition. Musically, it's one of the more interesting and hard-to-pigeonhole sets to come out of the North Carolina funk and soul scenes during the 1970s, with the obscure band offering up a mix of intoxicating, rock-tinged instrumental workouts (the decidedly cosmic 'Magnificent Choo Choo'), piano-laden Latin jazz-funk numbers ('Fantasy Garden'), sun-kissed songs ('Clock In', the twinkling 'My Dreams'), and hot-to-trot dancefloor cuts ('My Queen', the extra-percussive and alien 'Clap Song').
Review: If your musical tastes tend towards the more melodic and dreamily deep end of the dance music spectrum, we'd highly recommend this expansive, three-disc Summer Sampler compilation from All Day I Dream, an imprint that has long championed emotive, tuneful blends of deep house, progressive house and tech-house. There's no filler amongst the 12 tracks on show, just good quality cuts that combine solid grooves with ear-pleasing electronic instrumentation. Highlights include the slow burn, delay-laden late night hypnotism of Double Touch's 'Circles', the bass-heavy beats and fluid piano motifs of Makebo's 'Just a Dream', the ultra-deep bliss of Death on a Balcony's bittersweet 'The Source', and the simmering strings and subtle Middle Eastern influences on Nebula's tech-house shuffler 'Once Upon a Time'.
Review: REPRESS ALERT!: Amsterdam-based duo Wanderwelle presents their fourth full-length album titled A State Of Decrepitude. Inspired by the many aspects of impermanence and facets of decay, the duo composed their most intrinsic and detailed production yet.
After two successful albums on Silent Season and a recent collaboration album with Bandhagens Musikforening on Semantica, Phil van Dulm & Alexander Bartels have applied their talents to create a mysterious soundtrack focussed on the countless faces of deterioration. Recorded in 2018, Wanderwelle's first electroacoustic album is an anthological approach to a theme that is inseparable from our current global crises.
I Love You More Than You'll Ever Know (Timmy Regisford original version) (5:48)
I Love You More Than You'll Ever Know (Joaquin edit & Overdub version) (7:06)
Review: Second time around for Timmy Regisford's inspired rework of Donny Hathaway's 1972 classic "I Love You More Than You'll Ever Know", an unofficial revision that first slipped out on white label a couple of years ago. Regisford's revision is inspired, with the veteran New York producer layering Hathaway's heartfelt vocals and select instrumental elements from the original mix (guitar, orchestration) over a bed of rolling house beats and layered percussion. It's an emotional, life-affirming affair that re-casts the melancholic original as a stirring house classic. Over on side B, Joaquin 'Joe' Claussell offers an equally fine "Edits and Overdubs" version that adds some brand-new synth solos, spacey electronics and sweat-soaked percussion to Regisford's impressive revision.
Review: Planisphere is exactly the kind of cult deep house and techno producer that For Those That Knoe are all over. David Swatten's last release was 20 years ago, and that one now fetches sky-high prices online, but fortunately the good ship Knoe has taken charge of the situation and commissioned this full-length release of sumptuous electronics. As you would expect for the label, the vibe is primarily classic ambient techno with a spread of different energies from heads down club grooves to blissful back room excursions, all expressed through vintage synth tones. Consistently brilliant throughout, this is the kind of album you could happily melt into from start to finish, as well as having plenty for the mix-minded to get busy with.
Review: The mysterious Sault troupe is back with a call to action and revolutionary soul soundtrack that really bangs the box. "Ain't nothing gunna keep us silent" the lead singer yelps on 'Stop Der', which is an immediate banger after the soothing ambience and closely mic-ed whispers of the opener, which muse on what it means to be black. The rest of the record is a hard hitting mix of crisp drums and empowering vocals, with elements of classic soul as well as contemporary jazz colouring the grooves. This is powerful music with an even more powerful message.
Review: Here's something to seriously set the pulse racing: a limited-edition quintuple "Brazil 45s" boxset curated by the effervescent DJ Format, and featuring ten tracks unearthed on his most recent crate-digging trip to South America. In keeping with his much-loved style, most of the material can be loosely described as "psyche break-beat", all of which was initially recorded and released in the 1960s and '70s. That means a blend of hallucinatory Brazilian funk and soul rich in sweaty, often densely layered drums, booming basslines, trippy vocals, eccentric production, mazy Hammond organ lines and rousing horns. The quality bar is set so high that picking individual highlights is tough; suffice to say, you need all ten tunes in your life (and in your record box).
Alice Coltrane - "Journey In Satchidananda" (6:31)
Review: It would be fair to say that the latest instalment of Jazzman's popular Spiritual Jazz compilation series is one of its biggest yet. Stretched across three slabs of wax, it sees the label's dusty-fingered diggers raid the bulging back catalogue of one of jazz music's most important and celebrated labels of the '60s and '70s, Impulse!. It opens with 'Part One: Acknowledgement' from John Coltrane's brilliant A Love Supreme album and ends with Alice Coltrane's wonderfully exotic 'Journey In Satchidanada'; in between, you'll find essential slabs of cosmic and spiritual brilliance from such legends of the sound as Archie Shepp, Max Roach, Yusuf Lateef, Freddie Hubbard and Pharoah Sanders, as well as a handful of lesser-celebrated players.
Review: Mrs Dolphin by Pale Saints has only previously been available on CD in Japan, but for Record Store Day this year, 4AD finally press it to wax for the first time. It gets a full treatment, too, on limited, marbled green vinyl. The album is a compilation of early singles from both the group's early period 4AD EPs (Barging Into The Presence Of God and Half-Life) as well as a track that was on a Melody Maker compilation, Gigantic! 2, in 1990. As well as that, 'Colours and Shapes' is a track included here that was until now unavailable on vinyl.
Review: Since debuting on his own Simulacra Records imprint back in 2014, Todd Gautreau has released some seriously good ambient music as Tapes & Topographies. We attribute much of his success to a trademark style that blends fractured, heavily processed field recordings with opaque, comforting chords and melodies that are capable of winding their way into your subconscious. This trademark style once again comes to the fore on A Pulse of Durations, his first album for Past Inside The Present. Furnishing his usual fuzzy soundscapes with occasional melancholic piano motifs (see the gorgeous 'You Saw Nothing in Hiroshima'), swelling drone tones ('The Seashell & The Clergyman') and plucked strings ('The Modern Equivalent'), Gautreau delivers one of his most meditative and emotion-stirring sets to date.
Just (feat Pharrell Williams & Zack De La Rocha) (3:26)
Never Look Back (2:57)
The Ground Below (2:32)
Pulling The Pin (feat Mavis Staples & Josh Homme) (3:37)
A Few Words For The Firing Squad (Radiation) (6:46)
Yankee & The Brave (instrumental) (2:26)
Ooh La La (instrumental) (3:00)
Out Of Site (instrumental) (3:23)
Holy Calamafnck (instrumental) (3:57)
Goonies Vs ET (instrumental) (3:05)
Walking In The Snow (instrumental) (3:57)
Just (instrumental) (3:27)
Never Look Back (instrumental) (2:58)
The Ground Below (instrumental) (2:31)
Pulling The Pin (instrumental) (3:38)
A Few Words For The Firing Squad (Radiation) (instrumental) (6:40)
Review: Hip-hop super group Run The Jewels aka Brooklyn-based rapper-producer El-P and Atlanta-based rapper Killer Mike return with their fourth in their self-titled album series. Once again the American heavyweights call on a big roster of collaborators with DJ Premier, 2-Chainz, Pharrell Williams and Queens of the Stone Age's Josh Homme all appearing. The tracks remain hard-edged and direct, with cacophonous synths and oversized hits making each track an attention grab. The rhymes are of course on point throughout, with standouts including the machine gun bars of 'Walking The Shadow.'
Review: When it comes to modern soul albums of the mid-to-late 1970s, you'll find fewer more rare or sought-after than Timeless Legend's 1976 debut album Synchronized. Here the little-known Colmbus, Ohio-based group's masterpiece is given a special Record Store Day 2020 reissue courtesy of the soul diggers at Ohio Records. It's full of musically detailed, immaculately produced treats, with highlights including the summery grooves, dewy-eyed vocals and jazzy electric piano solos of 'Checking You Out', the snaking horn solos and impeccable group harmony vocals of 'Lonely Man', the heavy funk-rock-goes-R&B flex of 'River Boat Queen' and the pleasingly dubbed-out, effects-laden psychedelic soul of 'Ghost of Love'.
Just (feat Pharrell Williams & Zack De La Rocha) (3:26)
Never Look Back (2:57)
The Ground Below (2:32)
Pulling The Pin (feat Mavis Staples & Josh Homme) (3:37)
A Few Words For The Firing Squad (Radiation) (6:46)
Review: Hip-hop supergroup Run The Jewels aka Brooklyn-based rapper-producer El-P and Atlanta-based rapper Killer Mike return with their fourth in their self titled album series. Once again the American heavyweights call on a big roster of collaborators with DJ Premier, 2-Chainz, Pharrell Williams and Queens of the Stone Age's Josh Homme all appearing. The tracks remain hard-edged and direct, with cacophonous synths and oversized hits making each track an attention grab. The rhymes are of course on point throughout, with standouts including the machine gun bars of 'Walking The Shadow.'
Review: This is the solo debut album from legendary Belgian Jazz Keyboardist Marc Moulin, Originally issued in 1975 after Placebo disbanded. Having played the track B1 "TOHU BOHU" by Gilles Peterson (Acid Jazz Records), vinyl collectors and DJs were looking for this record fanatically. The members of Placebo were taken part in this album as support musicians.
Review: Terry Hall's album Home is the archetypal sound of gentle mid-90s pop rock, which is when it was released on Anxious. It was Hall's first solo record and spawned singles 'Forever J' and 'Sense', while much of the album was written with guitarist Craig Gannon and includes features with then-acclaimed musicians such as Ian Broudie of The Lightning Seed. As such, there are plenty of big jangly guitars, soaring and tender vocal deliveries and post-baggy grooves that might well still get festival crowds swaying along without a care int he world.
Review: If you were judging Kieran Hebden's 11th Four Tet studio album merely on the way it's presented, you'd immediately think he'd spent the last two years immersed in early '90s ambient house albums. While it's unlikely he's done that, it's fair to say that New Energy does owe a debt to classic electronica sets from that period. For all the exotic instrumentation and subtle nods to post-dubstep "aquacrunk" experimentalism and chiming, head-in-the-clouds sunrise house, the album feels like a relic of a lost era. That's not meant as a criticism - New Energy is superb - but it is true that his choice of neo-classical strings, gentle new age melodies, sweeping synthesizer chords and disconnected vocal samples would not sound out of place on a Global Communication album.
Review: Under the BVDub alias, ambient, drone and electronica explorer Brock Van Wey has amassed a vast discography of full-length excursions, though very few of these have been released on wax. The American producer has therefore pushed the boat out for new album Wrath & Empathy, which comprises four lengthy tracks stretched across two green vinyl plates. It's a hugely enjoyable set inspired by what van Wey calls the "magical realism" of Japanese writer Haruki Murakami. We're not well versed enough in Murakami's work to spot the sonic references, but there's much to admire, not least the San Franciscan's uncanny ability to create musical gold with little more than layered and effected instrumentation, slow-release ambient chords, gentle IDM beats, tactile aural textures and melodies that linger long in the memory.
Review: It's logical for Throwing Muses to re-release their startling, first-in-ten-years 2013 album Purgatory / Paradise right now. And it has nothing to do with the record's seventh anniversary. Until September's 'Sun Racket' arrived, this was the alternative rockers' most recent release and by all accounts the sprawling 32 track epic is among the finest Muses moments to date. So new fans will want to get properly acquainted, and vice versa.
The American alt-rock titans have a history stretching back to 1981, six years of inactivity around the millennium aside, but when it landed Purgatory / Paradise was only their ninth studio album. Think quality, not quantity in terms of discography - with this a case in point. Dense enough to lose yourself completely in, Kristin Hersh's effortless movements between wail and soft serenade, the jangling, hypnotic late-night guitar chords, groove-laden percussion and open-hearted tales of everyday characters are frankly incredible.
Review: The Art Of Us (TAOU) begins with the story of Blair French, a cosmic messenger raised in a house of 7 on the outskirts of a historic city. From dancing at mom's disco parties at a young age, to releasing rap tapes in middle school, winning best soundtrack for the multi-award-winning film DETROPIA and hitting the Billboard charts with his Pure Sounds of Michigan compilation; ultimately French found a home in the world of all things Detroit, Pan-African, Balearic, and ambient. TAOU is his first instrumental LP under his own name, (despite a 25 year career), bringing together his closest musical compatriots.
Review: It's 52 years since Thelonius Monk played the show at a California high school which makes up this new long player on Impulse. It happened after a 16 year old student at the school held a concert to raise some money for its International Club, and some how managed to persuade Thelonious Monk's manager that his charge should be the headliner. Monk obliged and turned up with his quartet, and in this recording you can hear every single detail from the creaks of the piano bench to Ben Riley's swishing hi-hats on 'Ruby, My Dear.' The backstory alone makes this one an essential purchase, while of course the music itself isn't too shabby, either.
Takeo Yamashita - "A Touch Of Japanese Tone" (4:21)
Tadaaki Misago & Tokyo Cuban Boys - "Jongara Reggae" (3:38)
Chikara Ueda & The Power Station - "Cloudy" (6:08)
Chumei Watanabe - "Downtown Blues" (3:38)
Kifu Mitsuhashi - "Hanagasa Ondo" (2:51)
Monica Lassen & The Sounds - "Incitation" (5:29)
Norio Maeda, Jiro Inagaki & The All-Stars - "Go Go A Go Go" (3:19)
Akira Ishikawa & Count Buffalo & The Jazz Rock Band - "The Sidewinder" (2:41)
Masahiko Sato, Jiro Inagaki & Big Soul Media - "Sniper's Snooze" (6:42)
Review: Some compilations manage to both educate, inform and educate in equal measure; this fine collection from Japanese crate diggers DJ Yoshizawa Dynamite and Chintam is one such set. Comprising mostly little-known tracks recorded by Japanese artists between 1968 and '70, it offers up a wealth of cuts inspired by American jazz-funk "rare groove". There's much to admire across the ten tracks, from the mazy Rhodes solos, fizzing big band jazz grooves and traditional Eastern instrumentation of Toshiko Yonekawa's "Soran Bushi", and the languidly-slung brilliance of Tadaki Misago and Tokyo Cuban Boys' multi-faceted musical fusion "Jongara Reggae", to the Jimi Hendrix-goes-funk heaviness of "Incitation" by Monica Lassen & The Sounds, and the drums-driven dancefloor madness of Masahiko Sato Jiro Inagaki & Big Soul Media's "Sniper's Snooze". Recommended.
Review: Long-serving Swedish producer Joel Mull, previously best-known for his club-focused techno sets, first started work on Nautical Dawn, his first album under his occasional Damm alias, over a decade ago. Inspired by the natural phenomenon of 'nautical dawn' - that point when the sun is not yet above the horizon, but bathes the sky in vivid colours - he wanted to make music for the break of dawn that combined home-made field recordings with suitably drowsy, opaque electronic motifs, slow-burn ambient chords, tactile aural textures and, when the mood took him, horizontal and hypnotic beats. It may have taken him a while, but the resultant set is little less than inspired: an evocative set of enveloping compositions that tease and tingle the senses.
Review: When it was initially released three decades ago in the summer of 1990, Slowdive's eponymous debut EP was heralded as an instant shoegaze classic: a drowsy, dreamy collection of hazy wall-of-sound, reverb-drenched songs that put the Reading band right at the heart of a growing musical movement. As this 30th anniversary reissue proves, it remains a fine collection of cuts. While lead cut 'Slowdive', a more orthodox fusion of shoegaze, dream-pop and indie-rock, was the one that chimed with listeners at the time, it's the two-part soundscape 'Avalyn' - and in particular the epic 'Avalyn II' - that resonates loudest in the 21st century. The latter track is so good that it's worth buying the EP just to get your hands on it.
Orquesta Olivieri - "Los Muchachos De Belen" (3:56)
Orquesta Olivieri - "There's No Other Girl" (3:22)
Ozzie Torrens & His Exciting Orchestra - "Mia's Boogaloo" (3:21)
Ozzie Torrens & His Exciting Orchestra - "Boogaloo In Apt 41" (3:19)
Brooklyn Sounds - "Ha Llegado El Momento" (45 edit) (4:27)
Brooklyn Sounds - "Guaguanco Tropical" (3:42)
Review: During the late 1960s and early 70s, New York's Latin music scene was the envy of the world, with a swathe of immigrant musicians from Central and Southern America joining forces to perform and record new variations on traditional themes and hybrid fusions of multiple styles, most notably Harlem-born Boogaloo. This Rocafort Records release pays tribute to some key NYC Latin combos of the period, delivering two tracks apiece from three acts over a trio of seven-inch singles. It's a hugely vibrant and enjoyable set, with highlights including the jaunty salsa of Orquestra Olivieri's 'Los Muchachos De Belen', two fiery boogaloo heaters from Ozzie Torrens and his brilliantly named "Exciting Orchestra", and the carnival-ready rush of Brooklyn Sounds' 'Guaguanco Tropical'.
Review: Smoked-out Texan psych troupe Khruangbin have picked a pretty apt moment to release this recording of their live show at Villain, Brooklyn. For starters, it's summer 2020, and if it weren't for a global pandemic there's a good chance a few of us would be recovering from the night before to a late-afternoon, or better yet early-evening performance from this lot at some festival or other. Secondly, because of said health crisis, we're all starved of the unique qualities that come from a band playing in the flesh. Dinner is definitely served here, then, via generous helpings of Laura Lee's bass-laden grooves and gorgeous, intoxicatingly airy vocal delivery. First laid down in 2018, when Khruangbin were touring in support of their second album, while 'Con Todo El Mundo' provides the majority of musical moments here, really 'Live At Villain' is a self-contained record - an hour or so of the band's typically magical and engrossing stage stuff, captured for keeps.
You Gon' Learn (feat Royca Da 5'9" & White Gold) (3:54)
Alfred (interlude) (0:29)
Those Kinda Nights (feat Ed Sheeran) (2:57)
In Too Deep (3:19)
Godzilla (feat Juice WRLD) (3:30)
Leaving Heaven (feat Skylar Grey) (4:24)
Yah Yah (feat Royce Da 5'9", Black Thought, Q-Tip & Denaun) (4:55)
Stepdad (intro) (0:15)
Never Love Again (2:57)
Little Engine (2:57)
Lock It Up (feat Anderson Paak) (2:52)
No Regrets (feat Don Toliver) (3:22)
I Will (feat KXNG Crooked, Royce Da 5'9" & Joell Ortiz) (5:05)
Alfred (outro) (0:30)
Review: Whether you appreciate the man himself, or even his music, there is no denying that Eminem's enduring ability to lay down the tightest wordplay and most cutting bars is second to none, even decades after he first shocked the world. His eleventh studio album - realised digitally back in January - shows off more of his technical skills and explores plenty of interesting ideas. The mood, as if often the case with this nasal rapper from Detroit, is defiant, and takes aim at critics as well as making superb use of a hook from Q-Tip, collaborating with 27-year-old Young M.A and plenty more besides.
Gladys Knight - "It's A Better Than Good Time" (Walter Gibbons Acetate mix) (12:25)
TC James & The Fist O'Funk Orchestra - "Get Up On Your Feet (Keep On Dancin')" (Walter Gibbons mix) (11:05)
Sandy Mercer - "You Are My Love" (12" version) (7:32)
Bettye Lavette - "Doin' The Best That I Can" (Walter Gibbons 12" mix) (11:05)
Arts & Craft - "I've Been Searching" (Walter Gibbons 12" mix) (9:54)
Dinosaur L - "Go Bang" (Walter Gibbons unreleased mix) (12:26)
Luv You Madly Orchestra - "Moon Maiden" (12" mix) (8:48)
Review: With the capabilities of modern discology allowing for the current deluge of disco 'edits', most of which do little beyond extending an intro for ease of mixing, it would have been an intriguing prospect to see what disco edit progenitor Walter Gibbons thought. Sadly we'll never find out, but current edit profiteers could do worse than check out this retrospective of Walter Gibbons remixes compiled by Strut. Nominally split between the 70s and 80s, the first section documents the imaginative reworks of the Salsoul catalogue that helped cement Gibbon's reputation whilst the second focuses on the mid eighties period where he worked closely with Arthur Russell. It was a chance encounter at the Salsoul office which afforded the then 22-year-old Gibbons an opportunity to remix Double Exposure's "Ten Percent", which became the first commercially successful 12inch release. That mix is one of seven tracks which aptly demonstrate the percussion heavy style Gibbon's branded Jungle Music, with the closing 11 minute mix of Betty LaVette perhaps the most impressive example. The second section provides more sonic intrigue, starting off with a previously unreleased remix of Arthur Russell's "See Through", which is followed by Gibbons seminal take on Dinosaur L's "Go Bang" and perhaps the masterpiece of his career - a nine minute remix of Strafe's "Set It Off". Strut have delivered yet another superlative retrospective here. Released on a double LP with a limited bonus mix CD, this is not to be missed!
Review: Welsh multi-instrumental troubadour Gruff Rhys has never shied away from tackling expansive subjects, whether that's the American Interior or the plight of 21st Century Britain, as seems to be the case here. The germination for this collection of original recordings, demos and songs happened back in 2016, a year when Brexit was beginning to loom large, Bowie died, and this album become the last thing recorded at Ali Chant's studio - another creative space bulldozed to make way for redevelopment.
The tracks themselves are less obtuse about that backdrop than the 'Plague' in the title, but the classic intensity of Rhys is very much at play here. A guy who manages to hook us in with a very gentle kind of witchcraft, tracks built around locked guitar hooks and smoothly give way to sprawling overtures, but there's also a potent campfire intimacy here, too - the hushed master storyteller holding his audience from beginning to end.
Review: This record is about love, grief, loss, and growth. Much of the music was written in the months leading up to my mother's death from pancreatic cancer in February 2020. Her prolonged illness taught me valuable lessons about impermanence and what it means to turn towards pain and suffering in order to remain connected with the world around me. Through not denying reality as it is, we are freed up to support those most in need of our love, compassion, and understanding. -Nick Turner
Review: Not all Record Store Releases are super special, but this one from Mello Musica Group certainly is. It is a never before released instrumental version of the critically acclaimed Retropolitan album. As such it is jam packed with tracks stripped back to the killer production from virtuoso Pete Rock, but is far more than just a collection of beats. Two legendary New Yorkers from different generations lay down their love letter to their home city and pull no punches in the process. Many of these cuts were made in the 90s, when Pete was working on the cult Was album Illmatic and in all the 12 tracks 12-tracks include features from Styles P, Benny The Butcher, Conway, Westside Gunn, Elzhi, and Raheem DeVaughn.
Review: Minimal Wave Records and Bitter Lake Recordings are happy to present their first collaborative release, a double LP by mythical Japanese underground electronic trio Portray Heads. Their self-titled double LP spans all their recordings to date including the songs from their rare Elaborate Dummy flexi (1985), follow-up Oratorio (1986) and several incredible newly discovered demos. Influenced by early 1980s European New Wave and Japanese synthpop, their songs range from circular poppy synth gems to moody dark new wave anthems - all led by strong female vocals. It's an absolute honor for us to release this long lost Japanese minimal synth classic. The release is limited to 999 copies pressed on 160 gram black double vinyl, presented in a high quality matte gatefold jacket featuring a rare photograph and the story behind the band.
Review: You can never really understate the impact Polly Jean Harvey had when she landed on the UK music scene, and the radars of tastemakers like John Peel, in the early-1990s. Guitar tracks at the time were usually split into unashamedly lager-soaked upfront Britpop, or nihilistic and self-sabotaging grunge and metal from the US. PJ Harvey was neither, and on 'To Bring You My Love' she perfected a particularly UK take on heavy, darkroom rock.
Pressing play means stepping into a world where the blues can either be a sparse, pitch black tome ('To Bring You My Love') or stomping and sweat-soaked juggernaut ('Meet Ze Monsta'), and that's just referencing the first two songs. Compare either to the trip-hop infused downtempo melancholia of 'The Dancer', and it's pretty clear why this was one of the albums of its decade.
The Sunshine Band - "Black Water Gold" (extended mix) (4:33)
Freedom - "Get Up & Dance" (5:56)
Joe Thomas - "Polarizer" (5:31)
Herman Kelly & Life - "Dance To The Drummer's Beat" (4:15)
T-Connection - "Groove To Get Down" (4:13)
George McCrae - "I Get Lifted" (2:44)
Queen Samantha - "Take A Chance" (7:35)
Ralph MacDonald - "Jam On The Groove" (5:48)
Blowfly - "Rapp Dirty" (6:46)
Review: Miami's legendary TK Disco presents a collection of classic breakbeats from their extensive back catalogue. In NYC in the late 70s and early 80s, the music that would come to be known as 'hip-hop' was in its formative stages in the city's Black and Hispanic neighbourhoods. Kool Herc, Grandmaster Flash, Grandmaster Flowers, Mean Gene, Jazzy Jay, Afrika Bambaataa, Charlie Chase and numerous others would go on to popularise the genre with a unique DJing style utilising the 'breaks'' - the unadulterated groove where the band on the record cut loose. Collected here are some of those most infamous beats, the very building blocks upon which popular culture and club music have been built, from the low slung B-boy vibe of Freedom's "Get Up And Dance", Herman Kelly & Life's "Dance To The Drummer's Beat" and the timeless hook of George McCrae's "I Get Lifted" amongst many more.
Review: Motor City artist Detroit's Finest doesn't do things by half - his electro is turbo-charged, with big booty bass and rave sirens underlining hard raps and streetwise swagger. He now finds himself on Casa Voyager outta France, laying out a double 12" vision that is varied and vital. After the urban opener 'Hands Behind Your Back' that is all about snapping snare loops and impromptu block parties, 'Undefeated' veers towards jungle madness. There are also sci-fi excursions, sample heavy and jazz tinged rollers like 'Blaxploitation' and pure ghetto bangers in 'Dis N Dat'. This one might be the mysterious producer's best yet.
Review: Unremembered, Remembered includes seven never before heard tracks and is often referred to as the final album from The Wolfgang Press that never was. Those tracks have been dug up from the vaults from a last ever session they had together at the famous Abbey Road Studios in London sometime between 1995 and 1996. By that stage only Andrew Gray and Michael Allen remained and the writing sessions came during times of political unrest, Brixton riots, IRA docklands bombing and the Dunblane Massacre. As such it has a heavy atmosphere that is well worth sinking into all these years later.