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).
Beastie Boys vs MFSB - "Check It Out People" (4:19)
MFSB - "People All Over The World" (dub) (4:11)
Review: On his last two singles on Soopastole, mash-up maestro DJ Soopasoul smashed together elements of Stevie Wonder and Redman/Method Man, and James Brown and Crooklyn Dodgers. For his latest trick he's decided to pepper an edited version of "People All Over The World" by Philadelphia Soul legends MFSB, with raps from a stone cold classic Beastie Boys tune. It's the sort of thing that shouldn't work, but the Beasties' flows work perfectly over the flanged guitars, undulating bass and unfussy 4-to-the-floor Philly Soul grooves of the MFSB track. You can hear his instrumental rework of that track on the flip; it's so good that it's arguably worth the entrance price on its own.
Review: Balearic titans Chris Coco and DJ Rocca team up on this new slab for Faze Action which celebrates all the finest qualities of these two veteran maestros. 'Discoteca (Heavy Fun Dub)' pours plenty into the mix, from sizzling disco and dreamy dub to slick 80s motifs, and yet it all comes off feeling very chilled indeed. 'Brute' plays around with analogue synths and raw drum machine punch to create a slow but intense cosmic workout, before Faze Action themselves step up to rework 'Discoteca' into a lean and mean club tool. For those who want to skip the breathy vocals, there's also an instrumental mix of 'Discoteca' included on the B2.
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: 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: Alison Limerick's 'Where Love Lives' is the sound of a generation, a reminder of one of the most vital cultural movements of the last 100 years. It is a perma-hit that unites all ages, colours and creeds, even now, 30 years after it first got hands in the air and tears in the eyes on dance floors of cult clubs around the world. To mark the occasion it gets a special remaster treatment and 12" release for Record Store Day. The Classic Mix - which is still the best - kicks off, followed by a big piano version from Mo Knuckles and a darker, more stripped back Cut To The Bone mix.
Review: Here's something for those looking to fill in the gaps in their classic hip-hop collection: a sizzling seven-inch boasting two of the Jungle Brothers hottest hits. On the A-side you'll find "Because I Got It Like That", a lolloping party hip-hop jam built around an assortment of complimentary samples, most notably a lift from Sly and the Family Stone's killer cut "You Can Make It If You Try". Over on the flip you'll find one of the most recognizable dance anthems of the late '80s, the early hip-house classic that is "I'll House You". Based on Todd Terry's similarly big "Can You Party", the tune is a warehouse-ready bounce-along that sounds as fresh now as it did way back in 1988.
Love Somebody Else (Glen Horsborough remix) (6:54)
Review: If anyone has turned out more seminal deep, funky and vocal house classics than Sandy Rivera, we're struggling to think of them. Now the enduring hit maker has done it again, this time with vocalist April Morgan on the Let There Be House label. 'Love Somebody Else' is a timeless tune with lung-emptying choruses from Morgan riding on top of a dense bed of piano stabs and sleek mid-tempo drums. It's the sort of universally accessible tune that could be dropped as an end of night send off in PBar, a floor filler in a commercial club or on some terrace in Ibiza.
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: In 1983 a group of Nigerian musicians in London headed into a studio in Hoxton Square and recorded their sole LP: a boogie and disco-infused set called 'Electric Murder'. The album was released the same year on a tiny Nigerian label, meaning that copies of this obscure classic have been sought after ever since. As this beautifully packaged and produced reissue proves, 'Electric Murder' has lost none of its lustre. Highlights come thick and fast throughout, from the slap-bass heavy celebration of opener "Funky Boogie Woogie" and the deep disco brilliance of "Electric Murder", to the low-slung, delay-laden disco-funk gem "Shake" and sugary, synth-laden slow jam "April's Girl", a track that boasts some suitably super electric piano solos.
Review: In his career to date, Jim Sharp has proved to be one of the bootleg remix and mash-up scene's smartest and most successful producers - a man capable of brilliantly breathing new life into a string of familiar favourites. He's at it again here, offering up fresh reconstructions of N.W.A's gangster rap classic "F*ck Tha Police". The killer flip is his A-side "Main Mix", in which he places the L.A crew's iconic acapella over a jumpy, party starting hip-hop beat rich in sampled short funk guitar riffs, snare and kick-heavy drums, James Brown style yelps and tight scratches. It's a great beat - so good, in fact, that the flipside instrumental mix is equally as essential as the club-rocking vocal version.
Joey Negro Presents The Sunburst Band - "Far Beyond" (6:37)
Review: Following on from the bumper compilation on Z Records of all the label's greatest hist, boss man Joey Negro offers up a third volume of 12"s. He goes first with a nice loose mix of 'Love Hangover' that bumps in all the right places. Opolopo's 'Get On Up' is a dazzling cut with cosmic chords and long legged drums that move you to your core, then Joey is back with a slick dubwise version of the classic TW Funkmasters cut 'Love Money.' Last of all, 'Far Beyond' is a reflective closer with far-sighted chords and a late night glow.
Review: Canadian Jorun Bombay is a long time remix master who now lands on Soundweight Records with his latest cut up and reworking efforts. The A-side finds him take on Blondie's legendary 'Rapture', which mixed slick raps with post-punk guitars. Here it becomes sweet rolling funk gem with molten chords and plenty of soul. The flip-side is a tropical rework of 'Don't Pay Any Fuller' that ups the bass and beefs out the drums, while layering in steamy chords and percussion that brim with character. These are two more classics in the spotless catalogue of Jorun Bombay.
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: Belarus' Iner launches a new label with a strong cast of international names all pushing a deep and distinguished strain of house music for those who want soul and invention in equal measure. Tilman is up first with 'Sweet Dreamer', a mellow, looped up roller. Sune's 'Flutes' takes a breezier approach shaped out by fluttering jazz funk motifs. Yann Polewka celebrates the sweetest Philly strings and some classic vocal licks for a disco-infused burner you can't help but love. Iner himself keeps things loose and organic on the wonderful 'Respectfull Kind Music', while Scruscru goes for a sleek approach to chopped up funky house. That leaves it to Buzz Compass to get heady and hazy with the bass-leaning cuts coursing through 'That Nighter'.
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: Nebraska's Friends & Relations label continues to yield the finest club tackle for those who need the real deal in their DJ sets. 'Deep Tune' casts its net as low as the Mariana Trench while riding a sweet disco loop, setting the scene for a teasing, dramatic drum throwdown with nimble synth flourishes on 'Drum Track 01'. 'Shift' takes things on a more interstellar trajectory with a heady beat elevated by star-strafing lead lines, and then 'Drum Track 02' whips up another killer percussive workout that keeps the organic intensity of the beat intact while still making it totally workable for the floor.
Jim Dunloop - "Espirito Do Rio" (Brazil Wave edit) (3:13)
Jim Dunloop & GRZLY Adams - "Different Sweetnuts" (Walk In The Shade edit) (3:58)
Review: For the latest "45" in the Dusty Donuts series of edits and mash ups, the Berlin-based crew has turned to long-time crew member Jim Dunloop, a jazz-trained pianist-turned-producer best known for his work alongside Marc Hype. He begins with "Spirit De Rio", a wonderfully warm, head-nodding, hip-hop style revision of a summery-sounding old samba gem rich in dewy-eyed female vocals and glistening guitars. Long-time friend, and occasional collaborator Grizzly Adams lends a hand on flipside cut "Different Sweetnuts", a deep and woozy revision of a fragile, female-fronted soul number that wraps drowsy elements from the pair's source material around a bass-heavy beat.
Review: For the latest edition in their ongoing series of golden-era hip-hop seven-inch reissues, Mr Bongo is taking us back to 1992 and Positive K's biggest hit - the 500,000-selling ode to unrequited love, "I Got A Man". Lyrically impressive, with the Bronx mic man delivering both male and "female" rap parts (the latter via voice-changing studio trickery), the song owes its success in part to a beat that makes great use of a funky loop from A Taste of Honey's "Rescue Me", which famously also formed the backbone of Funky Four + 1's early hip-hop classic "That's The Joint". Over on the flip you'll find the hazier and jazzier "SHakin", whose killer beat boasts judicious lifts from tracks by Wade Marcus and the D.O.C. In a word: essential.
Jensen Interceptor X Assembler Code - "Red Cell" (5:51)
CKFT (Keith Tucker X Carl Finlow) - "Coder" (4:55)
Voigtmann - "Subtopia" (6:07)
Cignol - "51D" (5:13)
Review: 20/20 Vision's electro mission continues unabated with this second compilation drop in the Exit Planet Earth series. The record opens up with Jensen Interceptor working alongside Assemble Code for a darkside workout heavy on the details and rude around the low end. Carl Finlow and Keith Tucker form a mini-supergroup for a new partnership CKFT, displaying their formidable chops with the body-rocking dystopia of 'Coder'. Voigtmann keeps things closer to the 4/4 spectrum on 'Subtopia', but with plenty of machine funk tropes woven into the mix. Cignol completes the set with a widescreen sound that's steeped in emotion and sci-fi noir from a dazzling array of finely tuned synths (including some essential 303, of course).
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.
Review: Expansion is pushing the boat out for Record Store Day 2020. Chief among the label's must-check RSD releases is this 12", which offers up fresh re-edits - courtesy of an un-credited re-editor - of two sought-after cuts by late-'70s and early '80s West Coast fusionists Halo. The headline attraction is undoubtedly the fresh edit of the ultra-rare extended mix of 1981's 'Let Me Do It', a warm and groovy modern soul/boogie jam primarily known for its' familiar "let me do until you're satisfied" vocal refrain. The band's shorter original version is also included in the package, alongside a shorter re-edit of their sparkling, synth-heavy 1988 single "Life". In keeping with the more celebrated A-side, it's an energetic, life-affirming earworm.
Review: Jim Sharp slows things down a little with a pair of edits from the American South. Early West Coast gangsta hit "Dopeman" is the subject of side a with original drums but extended breaks designed to get the floor pumping. On the flip is a dirty south classic with prickling 808 kicks and hi hats that hit hard. It's super sweet soul music with raw grooves that can get any party started topped with vocals from Willie Hutch finishing things off in real style.
Iwishcan William (Nad Tyler dub Strip version) (7:12)
Review: Washington D.C's The 3 Pieces initially put this out on their own private pressing on DL Records in 1982. It is a cosmic-boogie-disco-jazz and rap jam with lashings of funk and a curious spoken-word delivery and guest spot from a school aged vocalist that lends it plenty of character. The synths are glossy and harp-like, the bass grumbles are infectious and the whole thing overflows with feel good factor. The Lexx vocal mix is like an early house track with claps straight from a Peech Boys record and the Nad Tyler dub is even more ready for the dancefloor.
Review: Eddie C's Red Motorbike journeys on with another tasty 7" morsel from the boss himself, this time split with Elado. That is who goes first on the guitar licked, Americana tinged, disco dripped "Hipos" which is a perfect tune for gazing off at a distant sunset as you sway to and fro on an outdoor dance floor. Eddie C's "Crazy Heart" chugs a it harder, with busy melodic phrases riding up and down the scale over chunky drums. As always with Red Motorbike, this is grown up music for grown up dance floors, but that's not to say it isn't hella fun.
Review: The Blessed Madonna has remixed Dua Lipa's 'Levitating' featuring Missy Elliott and Madonna. This is the first track from 'Club Future Nostalgia', an entirely remixed version of Dua Lipa's global #1 album "Future Nostalgia", created in collaboration with The Blessed Madonna.
Review: There's a fair chance you'll already have heard "Cola", experienced production duo Camelphat's collaboration with vocalist Elderbrook. The original version, with its rumbling bass, atmospheric builds, subtle bassline house influence and "she sips the Coca-Cola" refrain, has become something of an anthem since first appearing on digital download earlier in the year. For this first vinyl release, Defected has packaged the now-familiar original mix with a trio of reworks. The most impressive of these comes from German veteran Mousse T. He brilliantly re-casts the track as a bumpin' chunk of celebratory disco-house complete with thrilling piano riffs and an elastic bassline.
James Brown & The Crooklyn Dodgers - "More Sex Cream" (Crooklyn Style) (3:44)
James Brown - "More Sex Cream" (instrumental mix) (3:44)
Review: Earlier this summer, mash-up maestro DJ Soopasoul raised our temperatures by layering Wu-Tang Clan vocals over a chunky, funk-fuelled backing track crafted from snippets of James Brown jams. He called it "Sex Cream", and now he's back with more sickly-sweet goodness based around the down-low greatness of the Godfather of Soul. A-side "More Sex Cream (Crooklyn Style)" delivers a similar-sounding JB-inspired beat, this time peppered with rhymes from "Crooklyn". It works wonderfully, of course, as does the flipside instrumental version. Bare party-starting fun for funk-loving hip-hop heads!
Review: Given the recent passing of Ennio Morricone, it seems fitting that we're being treated to a reissue of Babe Ruth's "The Mexican", a scorching funk-rock number based on the late, great Italian composer's theme from "For A Few Dollars More". The band's cover of that can be heard on the B-side, but it's the five-minute A-side, which boasts lyrics calling out the misleading narrative of John Wayne western "The Alamo", that you need in your life. Full of killer funk breaks that became staples during hip-hop's foundational block party era, plus driving musicality and some of rap music's best-known hooks, the track is still capable of slaying dancefloors 47 years after it was first recorded.
Review: A new one from Paris' Favorite Recordings. After two acclaimed LP's as Mr President released over the last decade, Bruno Hovart is back. One Night is soul and disco with a modern touch, fitting all the criteria to become an instant club classic. With special guest vocalists like Jennifer Zonou (Hawa), Cindy Pooch, Celia Kameni (Saving Coco) and Sabba MG - who you may recognise from previous releases. The title track is a sexy, loungey and jazzy deep house joint reminiscent of early noughties grooves on Naked Music or Hed Kandi. Plus, there's also a wonderful rendition of Roy Davis Jr and Peven Everett's classic 'Gabriel'.
Review: Here's something to get Talking Heads fans salivating: a fresh EP featuring previously buried, unheard alternative versions and outtakes recorded during the sessions for the celebrated New York new wave band's 1979 album Fear of Music. The EP begins with the completely unheard 'Dancing For Money', a typically undulating, off-kilter chunk of post-punk eccentricity that seemingly never went beyond the demo stage, before offering up a riotous alternate mix of the noisy, guitar-laden stomper 'Life During Wartime'. Over on the flip you'll find notably different arrangements and recordings of 'Cities' and 'Mind'; the latter, with its juju style guitar sounds and languid rhythm section, is particularly good.
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.
Crooklyn Dodgers (feat Buckshot & Special Ed & Master Ace) (4:30)
Return Of The Crooklyn Dodgers (feat Chubb Rock & Jeru The Damaja & OC) (5:06)
Review: Crooklyn Dodgers have had three different incarnations with members including Mos Def, Memphis Bleek, Masta Ace, Buckshot and Jeru the Damaja, making them something of a hip hop supergroup. They recorded soundtracks for Spike Lee films in 1994 and 1995 and always muse on topical subjects from urban life in New York City to there state of social and political affairs. Buckshot, Masta Ace and Special Ed was the line-up when they laid down their first single "Crooklyn", a sweet rolling bit of classic boom-bap with fluid vocal flow, then Chubb Rock, Jeru the Damaja and O.C came together for next single "Return of the Crooklyn Dodgers" which makes the b-side here. It's a piano laced late night jam with soul to spare and slick DJ Premier production.
Review: Mind Fair have been around the block with their strain of disco-infused house music, stopping off at Golf Channel, International Feel and Kinfolk amongst others, so you know they've got you covered for classy edits that are actually useful and interesting. This heavyweight drop for Magic Wand kicks off with the righteous stomp of "Holding On" before dropping into a reworking of uptempo jazz funk classic "Feeling Good" by Francine McGee. "All Night Soca" beefs a classic cover of Lionel Ritchie up for the dance, while "Mastermind" finishes the record off with some cool and deadly funk.
Make It Hot (Pete Herbert & Dicky Trisco remix) (6:56)
Review: JKRIV and The Disco Machine's Make It Hot gets the remix treatment here with mature disco don Ray Mangler's going first. He lays down train-track grooves that never let up and overdubs with shimmering chords and steamy vocals that will work any party into a lather. JKRIV then steps up with a retro-future mix packed with gauzy chords and old school keys before veteran Pete Herbet steps ups with Discky Trisco for the most upbeat, candied and accessible version, and possible the best.
Review: Much loved and always impassioned vocalist and producer Norma Jean Bell is a firm favourite with greats like Moodymann, and for good reason. here she lands on Pandamonium with a new EP that utilises the voice of soul herself, Miss Aretha Franklin. "Got Me A Mann" is a gossip tinged, chord laced house track that will make you shuffle on the spot as you rejoice your sins. "Libre Comme Un Oiseau (Free As A Bird)" is another roller, this time with more free flowing vocals that ring out above the chunky, organic drums and busted bass. Excellent stuff.
Sare Havlicek - "White Russian (Lazy Summer)" (5:20)
Oliver Cheatham - "Get Down Saturday Night" (7:10)
The Sugarhill Gang - "Rapper´s Delight" (3:34)
Gibson Brothers - "Cuba" (7:45)
Review: For the next installment of Argentinian label Music Broker's tribute series, they have selected some of seminal Parisian duo Daft Punk's finest works and remixes, spanning the last two decades, along with some of the music that inspired them. The Many Faces Of Daft Punk: A Journey Through The Inner World Of Daft Punk features disco royalty such as Niles Rodgers, Giorgio Moroder and Cerrone, while more contemporary producers from the house music spectrum feature also, such as Detroit's Scott Grooves (featuring Parliament/Funkadelic), The Micronauts and Versatile's I:Cube receive de Homem-Christo and Bangalter's midas touch. the latter's 'Disco Cubizm" from '96 being a particular highlight on the remix side of things. Not to mention their roaring rework of indie-pop darlings Franz Ferdinand's classic 'Take Me Out'.
Review: Paul Robinson had a rich and varied life in soundsystem music, from working with the Freedom Sounds label in Kingston to forming lovers rock outfit One Blood. Of his few solo releases under his own name, this early 80s treat was geared towards the smooth sound of Brit funk, with a crisp boogie groove down low and a cool mood on top. "Come On Sister" is the perfect easy going party starter, which sports a tasteful dubbing out on the instrumental version that bolsters this Emotional Rescue re-release. Always ones to draft in a choice remixer, the B side here goes to Bruno who teases out the original groove for an extended trip before the vocals kick in.
Review: Following two sterling turns from Dedication feat Danielle Moore and Smith & Mudd feat Quinn Lamont Luke, Adventures In Paradise returns with another effervescent, vocal-led bomb. Soma World team up with Falle for an energising track that fold high life, funk and Kwaito house into a potent blend given voice by the infectious singing of Falle. As well as the original version of 'Want This', we're treated to two remixes by Ray Mang, who dubs the track out into a simmering, bass-rooted groover that captures the moody allure of a picture-perfect sundown moment.
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.
Review: The first release on Kamarads pulls together a solid mix of established tech house figureheads for a classy, versatile set of club tracks. Politics Of Dancing goes up first with 'Ote', a deep and rugged groover geared towards hypnotism and total immersion. Djebali follows up with an equally stealthy roller that will appeal to those who like it stripped back. Terence: Terry takes things in a swirling, trippy direction with the afters-ready 'Eastern Boy' and Stephan Bazbaz finishes up with a gorgeous, lilting deep house lullaby to soothe the weary raver's soul.
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.
Review: Over the years, we've become accustomed to hearing Bottin push the boundaries of sleazy, analogue-rich nu-disco and revivalist late-night Italo. On this edit outing he successfully switches focus, delivering four re-rubs of a suitably Balearic persuasion. After opening with the huggable grooves, dreamy chords and hushed spoken word vocals of "Manifesto Balearico", the Italian producer brilliantly dubs out some slap-bass-propelled post-disco oddity ("2 Palmy Days"), before reworking a suitably cheeky chunk of Italo-disco/sleazy synth-pop eccentricity (the ace "Got Headphones"). To finish things off, he offers up "OK! Goodnight!", a fine fusion of glassy-eyed female vocal snippets and what sounds like replayed sections from Steve Miller Band's "Abracadabra".
Carolyn Crawford - "Ready Or Not Here Comes Love" (2:26)
Hodges, James, Smith & Crawford - "What Made You Think" (3:11)
Review: We'd advise serious soul heads to take a look at this one. Part of the "Kent Select" series of dancefloor-focused 45s, it features two previously unissued 1971 recordings, both of which were produced by Mickey Stevenson. In some ways, it's incredible to think that Carolyn Crawford's "Ready Or Not Here Comes Love" has never previously been released; it's a genuinely inspired, up-lifting slab of soaring, stomping soul that will get Northern Soul enthusiasts racing for the dancefloor in their droves. Flipside "What Made You Think", credited to Hodges, James, Smith and Crawford, is almost as good, even if it lacks the rushing, celebratory positivity of the sublime A-side. In a word: essential!
Review: Buckle up for the latest space crusade from Salty Nuts. This one finds Oden & Fatzo at the helm and the trip begins with the slick and seductive tech house perfection of 'Spaceship For Sale' which glides on silky synths to an imagined future. 'Casinomania' bubbles with all the sort of pixelated sounds and hyper real chords that you would get on the gambling floor of a Las Vegas hotel and '69 Party Boys' is another lithe, neon-lit future-tech-funk gem that gets a remix from Fabe. In the popular Brazilian's hands it becomes a little more thrown back thanks to its warm organ bass.