James Brown - "Funky President" (extended breaks special edition) (4:25)
The Vibrettes - "Humpty Dump" (part 1 - extended breaks special edition) (3:16)
Review: New 7" label Beats & Breaks present "Funky President" which is a funk song originally released as a single in 1974, by the hardest working man in show business at the time - the Godfather of Soul - James Brown. It appeared on his 4nd (!) album entitled 'Reality' released that same year. According to Brown, the song's title referred to U.S. President Gerald Ford - who succeeded Richard Nixon in the White House shortly before it was recorded. It is one of Brown's most frequently sampled recordings. The rhythmic portions of the song have been used on dozens of hip hop tracks. On the flip, The Vibrettes' "Humpty Dump" is another killer funk number that was recorded by one Roscoe Porter and originally released by Lujon back in 1973. The sample source for many a respected beat by such legends as J. Dilla, Four Tet, 2 Bad Mice and even Aphex Twin.
Review: In the early '70s, Cymande made a trio of killer albums that remain stone cold classics to this day. For this reissue 7", Mr Bongo has dipped into two of those albums - 1973's Second Time Around and 74's Promised Heights - and dug out two of the best-loved, most-sampled cuts. On the A you'll find "Fug", a low-slung, bassline-driven party full of killer drum breaks, righteous horn solos and, and conscious lyrics that call for global action against inequality (little, it seems, has changed politically since). It's one of those you should really own, as is the ever more familiar flipside "Brothers On The Slide", which boasts one of the most recognizable grooves in the history of dance music.
You Can't Miss What You Can't Measure (Alton Miller mix) (5:17)
Get Your Ass Off & Jam (Marcellus Pittman remix) (6:46)
Cosmic Slop (Moodymann mix) (9:26)
Music For My Mother (Andres Wo Ahh Ay vocal mix) (5:23)
Super Stupid (Dirtbombs version) (4:30)
Music 4 My Mother (Underground Resistance mix) (5:41)
Undisco Kidd (Gay Marvine edit) (5:46)
Take Your Dead Ass Home (The Fantasy version) (7:46)
Let's Take It To The Stage (Amp Fiddler Laugin @ Ya mix) (6:11)
Standing On The Verge (Anthony Shake Shakir & T Dancer remix) (5:37)
You & Your Folks (Claude Young Jr club mix) (6:43)
Be My Beach (Mophono & Tom Thump mix) (6:08)
You & Your Folks (Claude Young Jr dub) (5:55)
Let's Make It Last (Kenny Dixon Jr edit) (7:32)
Looking Back At You (Ectomorph Stripped & dubbed) (6:12)
Maggot Brain (BMG dub) (10:09)
Review: Given the brilliantly simple concept behind this fine compilation - contemporary Detroit producers remix Funkadelic - we're rather surprised nobody's done it before. With 17 varied re-rubs stretched across three slabs of wax, there's naturally plenty to enjoy. Highlights come thick and fast, from the deep house/P-funk fusion of Alton Miller's take on "Get Your Ass Off and Jam" and Andres' loose, hip-hop influenced revision of "Music For My Mother", to the thrusting loops and heady late night hypnotism of Anthony Shake Shakir and T-Dancer's version of "Standing on the Verge". While many of the versions stay relatively faithful to the original, the more "out-there" interpretations - see BMG's outer-space ambient dub of "Maggot Brain" and Moodymann's epic revision of "Cosmic Slop" - are also consistently impressive.
The Winstons - "Amen, Brother" (extended Breaks Special edition) (3:32)
The Chosen Few - "Candy I'm So Doggone Mixed Up" (extended Breaks Special edition) (3:25)
Review: The Beats & Breaks 7" series was founded to satisfy the desires of DJs, mainly by serving up re-edits that put some of the world's most recognizable drum breaks front and centre. This edition kicks off with a rearrangement of the Winstons' "Amen Brother", whose drum break not only became a staple of U.S hip-hop in the 1980s, but also the foundation of jungle and later drum and bass. This edit wisely gives plenty of air time to the infamous drum break, dropping into it at frequent intervals in between bouts of punchy, horn-heavy funk. Flip to the B-side for a tastefully chopped and rearranged version of The Chosen Few's super-sweet 1976 soul cut "Candy I'm So Doggone Mixed Up".
Review: Mr Bongo recently served up a tasty 7" single featuring two of Cymande's best-loved tracks, "Fug" and "Brothers on the Slide". Here they repeat the trick, slapping the two most-played tracks from the British band's incredible 1972 debut album, Cymande, on one "45". The A-side boasts "Bra", a killer chunk of funk/soul/reggae fusion with one of the most recognizable grooves around. Hip-hop heads will know it inside out, since DJs have been doubling up with copies of "Bra" since the mid 1970s. On the flip you'll find "The Message", a sublime, slightly more spaced out reggae-funk workout rich in snaking sax lines, memorable vocals and a groove so distinctive it couldn't come from any other band.
Review: Champion sound! Sampled over 500 times but still funkier than a sleepover at Kanye's, The Mohawks "The Champ" enjoys gold status for this limited Record Store Day special. Flip for the instant horn-heaved call to arms "Sound Of The Witchdoctor". Fresh from 68, and still as bewitching... You might call this a magnificent 7" (not sorry)
Review: 40 years has passed since the release of the Mighty Ryeders' one and only album, Help Us Spread The Message. To celebrate this fact, Dynamite Cuts has decided to release four of the album's most sort-after cuts on one 7" double-pack. Fittingly, it begins with the band's best-known track, the peerless "Evil Vibrations" (as famously sampled by De La Soul) before moving onto the bouncy Blaxploitation soul of "The Mighty Ryeders". The band's ability to musically shape-shift is explored further on the second seven-inch, where the glassy-eyed jazz-funk/soul fusion of "Lovely" is backed by the disco-era conscious funk brilliance of "Everybody Groove (No Woman Interruption).
Bob James - "Take Me To The Mardi Gras" (extended Breaks Special edition) (3:30)
David Matthews - "Sandworms" (extended Breaks Special edition) (4:22)
Review: The Beats and Breaks series of "Extended Break Edits" has so far succeeded in its stated aim to provide DJs with simple but devastatingly effective rearrangements built around lengthening key percussive packages. The mystery editors behind the series are at it again here, first looping up the distinctive, cowbell and triangle-driven drum passages dotted throughout Bob James' classic "Take Me To The Mardi Gras". On the flip, they take their scalpel to David Matthews' 1977 jazz-funk gem "Sandworms", casually making merry with the proto hip-hop beat, rubbery bass guitar, flanged guitar riffs and snaking saxophone solos.
Review: Back in 2014, Timewarp Music asked DJ Soopasoul to remix "Inside Man", one of the strongest cuts from Croatian producer Funky Destination's funk-fuelled debut album, Revolution is Only Solution. While one mix appeared on a digital-only label compilation, Soopasoul actually handed in two reworks. Here both get an outing on wax for the first time. The A-side version is particularly sweet, with Soopasoul layering the original's meandering and lilting trumpet solo over a rolling funk groove rich in big bass, jangling guitars and frenetic drum breaks. The flipside revision emphasizes this groove more, looping and extending the breaks for easier DJ use and a livelier dancefloor response.
How Bout Us (feat Steve Spacek - vocal version) (3:44)
How Bout Us (exclusive unreleased instrumental) (4:10)
Review: The latest single from Mukatsuku is from Australian DJ/Producer Katalyst who was one of the winners at Australian Dance Music Awards in 2002. 'How Bout Us' originally came out as part of the album ''What's Happening ' on Australian label Invada in 2007 before receiving a global CD only release for BBE a year later in 2008 but up till now has never been out as a single in it's own right. The track 'How Bout Us' features vocalist Steve Spacek with an exclusive unreleased instrumental version on the flipside. Killer production with massive string lines and charismatic vocals to ignite your dancefloor.As played by Coldcut,Mr Thing, Skeme Richards , Marcel Vogel,The Herbaliser,DJ Prestige, Boca 45, Smoov,Andre One Of A Kind, DJ Gilla (First Word Records) , Huw72, Dom Servini (Wah Wah 45's), Ben Gibson,etc
Review: Bjorn Wagner's Bacao Rhythm & Steel Band combo recently returned from a two-year hiatus with a killer new album, "The Serpent's Mouth". It's that set - a glorious fusion of funk, soul, disco, jazz and Trinidadian steel band music - from which these two top tracks are taken from. A-side "1 Thing" is particularly glorious. As one quick listen to the clips will confirm, it's a riotous instrumental cover of the Amerie R&B classic of the same name, which replaces the singer's vocals with ear-catching steel drums. The same killer combination of flash-friend funk guitars, bustling drums and tropical steel drum sounds can also be heard on B-side "Hoopla Hoop", which also boasts some suitably fuzzy horns.
Review: Powerful belters from soul supernova Baby Huey. The only solo 45s he cut for Curtom Records before he passed away aged only 26, this was released posthumously and OG copies regularly go for over 200 pounds. Now reissued on Soul Brother, the two sides give you the full fat Huey; "Hard Times" hits with a raw Lee Fields style gravelly, story-telling delivery while "Listen To Me" shows Huey's deft ability to band-lead an all-out rock jam. Raw and emotional, Huey left this world far too soon.
Review: When it comes to break-driven dancefloor reworks and cheeky re-edits, Canada-based cut-and-paste merchant Jorun Bombay has a very impressive track record. Here he returns to Scarborough stable Soundweight with two more chunks of break-heavy goodness. On the A-side you'll find "Edits Theme", a tasty fusion of extended James Brown style drum-breaks, meandering sax solos and sumptuous, orchestra-enhanced orchestration. Over on Side B, "Editing Gears" sees Bombay serve up a bustling re-work of Johnny Hammond classic "Shifting Gears" rich in fluid electric piano solos, extended drum breaks, flanged funk guitars and delay-laden vocal snippets.
Review: Since launching last year, the Dynamite Cuts has delivered a string of killer seven-inch singles featuring sought-after cuts from fantastic old albums and this is another must-have along the same lines. It boasts two tracks from Clarence Wheeler and the Enforcers' 1970 debut album, "Doing What We Wanna Do", neither of which have appeared on a "45" before. You'll find a riotous Hammond funk explosion rich in energetic, break-driven drumming and wild trumpet and organ solos on the B-side, with the similarly sweaty title track nestling on the A. This insatiable number is altogether deeper and looser in feel, with tasty group vocals rising above bustling drums, warm Hammond lines and punchy sax solos.
Review: Out as a reissue through the same label that put it out way back in 1971, the aptly named Dig, Friday, Saturday & Sunday appear on our shelves like nothing's happened, and we're still here wandering what the hell happened! "Potato Salad" is a hard nugget to find as an original, but its also such a groovy, light-hearted tune that is a perfect example of why disco was what it was, and why it was so fun - a super recommended tune. "There Must Be Something" is equally good and powerful when played out, and although it doesn't have the same charm as the A-side, it's still a rocking soul classic.
Review: Suncut's latest release offers up an affordably priced reissue of obscure US outfit, Pages' "Heartaches & Pain", a sought-after seven-inch single from 1979. Given that copies of the Sunstruck Records original regularly change hands for several hundred pounds a time, you could argue that they've done soul and funk DJs a massive service. The title track, which was apparently recorded in 1971 by producer Travis Biggs and the obscure Pages, is something of a breezy soul treat - a two-and-a-half minute slab of sweetness rich in attractive vocals, rising horns and a bustling bottom-end groove. Arguably even more impressive is Blaxploitation funk style flipside "Mack", where flanged guitars, punchy horns, sample-ready drum breaks and down-low vocals combine with devastating effect.
Review: Dynamite Cuts come back with a bang with four sublime cuts taken from the criminally short discography of funk soul troupe Leo's Sunshipp. The first half of their only album, we kick off with their cult solar celebration "Give Me The Sunshine" before "I'm Back For More" shreds through the stratosphere with a swooning Average White Band sparkle, "Get Down People" salutes with an Off The Wall style shine and shimmy before "Madame Butterfly" drifts back into the atmosphere with velvet falsetto harmonies and a groove so laid back it drips off the wax. Feel the sunshine.
Review: Previously spotted passing hands for over 5000 quid, this one-off 45" from North Carolina troupe Ice has enjoyed cult status over the years in both the deepfunk and northern soul scenes. Straight from 1980, there's a great balance of classic soul motifs and modern production as "Reality" swoons and sways unhurriedly but emphatically while "Hey Hey" ups the boogie ante with firm focus on the party, sharp switches on the chorus and some insane bass runs. Another ice cold reissue from AOTN.
Review: 1974's Coming Right At You, the sole album from 100% Pure Poison, has long been a sought-after jazz-funk gem. Soul Brother has previously reissued the rare (and increasingly expensive) LP, though this double 7" marks the first time most of these tracks have been available on wax since 2001. Check first opener (and title track) "Windy C", a superb chunk of lolloping, laidback jazz-funk that sits somewhere between Bob James and Cymande, before turning your attention to the slow-burn soulful delights of string-laden torch song "Puppet On A Chain". Over on the second 7", "No More City, No More Country" is a more hard-spun Blaxploitation funk affair, while "Hole In My Shoe" is a horn-fired slab of J.B's style funk-soul fusion.
Review: Larry Grant McGee is little more than a footnote in musical history, releasing the sum total of two seven-inch singles between 1976 and 80. Both, as any serious collector will tell you, are brilliant and - in the case of debut "The Burg (Pittsburgh PA)" - incredibly hard to find. Happily, Dynamite Cuts has given that release a new lease of life thanks to this much-needed reissue. The title track remains a fine slice of hazy, sunshine-friendly West Coast goodness that sits somewhere between Steve Miller Band, Steely Dan and groovy contemporaneous soul, with McGee's glistening jazz guitar solos heightened the baked, loved-up feel. Turn to the flip for "Happy Bicentennial USA", a celebratory tribute to his nation's 200th birthday that's as warm and delicious as they come.
Review: For their latest essential seven-inch single, the Dynamite Cuts crew has raided Chicago Gangsters' 1975 debut album, "Blind Over You". Neither of the two tracks on offer has been featured on a "45" before. On the A-side you'll find "Gangster Boogie", a seriously heavy, Clavinet and saxophone-laden funk wriggler whose snappy drum break has appeared on numerous hip-hop jams over the years (including LL Cool J's "Mama Said Knock You Out"). On the flip you'll find the even more riotous and life-affirming funk-rock masterpiece "Why Did You Do It". Rich in rasping horns, wild organ lines and gnarly guitar riffs, it's just crying out to be played loud over a heavy soundsystem.